Blog TIFF 12

A lot of people (mostly politicians and Telefilm leeches) try to define Canadian cinema. We imagine them in some war room in Ottawa drawing up cross-cultural Venn diagrams, sipping their Double Doubles, gyrating to Rush.

Here’s the thing: Canadian cinema is the cinema Canadians make. It doesn’t need to be defined. It just is. This country has an armoury of amazing filmmakers who — when given space and respect — make films that can’t help but be uniquely Canadian. And this is why we’re thrilled that TIFF has released its 2012 Canadian lineup.

Below we list some of the films we're most looking forward to.

Laurence Anyways, Xavier Dolan

Set in 1990s Montreal, the films tells the story of a man who undergoes a sex change while trying to stay with his girlfriend, Fred. It is an exploration of relationships and their fragility in the face of internal and external pressures. Taking place over ten years, Laurence is a product of 23-year-old Dolan’s evolving ambition. The director embodies a new generation of Quebecois filmmaking — one loaded with bravura, yet removed from overt politics. 

Stories We Tell, Sarah Polley

In this new documentary, Polley interviews a family of storytellers, digging into their rich history while drawing contradictory answers to the same questions. The film explores ideas of truth, memory, and shared experience. Still glowing in the success of last year’s TIFF favourite Take This Waltz, Polley has emerged as one of Canada’s most gifted filmmakers. We’re intrigued to see how her confident yet sensitive voice translates to a medium where the director is more muted.

Krivina, Igor Drljaca

Showcased within this year's Discovery programme, Krivina is the debut feature of Torontonian-cum-Bosnian Drljaca. The film focuses on Miro, an immigrant of former Yugoslavia now living in Toronto. He returns to Sarajevo to find his missing pre-war friend, now wanted for war crimes. Set under the lingering spectre of the Yugoslav Wars, Krivina will surely be an intensely personal work.

Related >> Get Ready for TIFF's Midnight Madness

Related >> TIFF Announces its 2012 Gala Lineup

Photo Gallery DAILY TORO

It seems counterintuitive but somehow lingerie shopping with your significant other is never as fun as it should be. Still, when La Senza invited us to their fall preview at the Canadian lingerie brand's Eaton Centre location — complete with live models and complimentary cocktails, we thought why not?


Do you hear that? That's the sound of 1,000 cinephile boners pulsating across the Great White North.

Next year, former TORO cover boy Ryan Reynolds and current TORO favourite Atom Egoyan will film Queen of the Night in various locations around southern Ontario. In the film, Reynolds plays a father who discovers evidence of his daughter's whereabouts, eight years after she was abducted. Queen is based on an original screenplay by Egoyan and David Fraser.

The film marks a huge shift for both Canadian film stars. Reynolds is famous for his golden boy good looks and raunchy frat boy comedies, while Egoyan is praised for his psychological dramas and having Amanda Seyfried give Liam Neeson a handjob.

This film will either be an inspired collision of Hollywood and indie, or a terrific failure right at home in the CanCon Hall of What Could Have Been.

Related >> TORO Talks to Atom Egoyan!

Related >> Ryan Reynolds Is Riding High


Do you like your chicken wings with a side of titty sweat and girating phallus in your face? Then look no further than Applebee's.

The next time you're in Florida and feeling like a loathsome hog, visit the "family" restaurant after 10 p.m. That's when the franchise becomes a full-on club, trades the John Fogerty and apple juice for Top 40 and Budweiser, and sets back the feminist movement forty years.

Check out this gallery via our friends at Business Insider (really?) for Club Applebee's Best Of moments. Witness the drunk girls making out, the sweaty table dancing, and even more drunk girls making out. We think you can see a confused mother, clutching her daughter in terror after being grinded and offered MDMA, somewhere in the background.


Every day, until the closing ceremonies, TORO brings you the Top 3 stories of London 2012.

BRONZE: Weightlifter Somehow Not Dead After Barbell Scare

Defending Olympic champion Matthias Steiner survived a 432-pound barbell falling on his neck without the magic of CGI. After losing balance during the second lift of the competition, the German fell awkwardly with the bar landing on top of him. Steiner suffered only minor injuries and walked off the floor, fist triumphantly in the air.

We don’t believe in Social Darwinism, but if ever there was an Übermensch, Steiner is certainly he. Expect Steiner to soon eat and replace Mark Ruffalo in advance of the sequel to The Avengers.

SILVER: Christine Sinclair Won’t Be Punished for Being Right

Christine Sinclair, captain of Canada’s women’s soccer team, will be allowed to compete for the Bronze medal against France this Thursday, despite her overt questioning of FIFA officiating.

After a controversial loss to the Americans in the soccer semifinal, Sinclair blasted Norwegian referee Christina Pederson, saying: “It’s a shame in a game…that was so important, the ref decided the result before it started.” During the match, Pederson called a seldom-enforced six-second violation on Canadian keeper Erin McLeod. That call led to the game-tying American goal, and then American victory in extra time.

While FIFA supports Pederson’s call, the ref will not officiate the final two matches of the Games — a tacit admission that Pederson screwed the pooch (and the dreams of a nation).

GOLD: Virgin Hurdler Loses Match, Gets Attacked by the Media

Yesterday American hurdler Lolo Jones failed to win a medal, and journalists pounced.

You see, Jones is a 30-year-old virgin with a pretty face who enjoys talking to the media. But after Jones’s loss, Time asked the world: Did she deserve to be heard?”

Journalists have criticized Jones for using her looks and voice to profit from endorsements. We all know that athletes at the Olympics shag more than a pair of Yorkies on coke, so what’s wrong with Jones scoring another way? Rarely do you hear the media criticize $20-Million-Man Usain Bolt for his cocky Superman act.

Remember, a subject can’t fuel hype without a willing machine. And are journalists really attacking a 30-year-old who still hasn’t had sex? Leave her alone!

Related >> Medal Count: Canada Not Dead Yet


This morning, Oakville’s Adam van Koeverden won Silver in K-1 1,000 metres and Burlington’s Mark Oldershaw won Bronze in C-1 1,000 m, thus restoring — at least temporarily — Canada’s relevancy at the London Summer Olympics. With a current total of 13, Canada can still best its Beijing medal count of 18, but 2008’s total included three Gold. Had Canada at least three Gold medals now, we would be 13 spots ahead on the leaderboard.

The People’s Bulldozer of China, the United States of the Bank of America, and Grateful Britain now have enough combined Gold to make Kanye West jealous.

Korea (the friendly one) is the only country with at least 10 Gold medals to have never engaged in the invasion and mass-slaughter of another people for resources, domination or purposes of religion. Think about that.

1. The People’s Republic of China: 34 Gold, 21 Silver, 18 Bronze. Total: 73

2. The United States of America: 30 Gold, 19 Silver, 22 Bronze. Total: 71

3. Great Britain: 22 Gold, 13 Silver, 13 Bronze. Total: 48

29. Canada: 1 Gold, 4 Silver, 8 Bronze. Total: 13

Related >> Highs and Lows of London 2012


Toronto's electro-pop darlings Austra have just released the new track, "Painful Like" via AUX TV. The video, below, shows the five-piece band playing in a basement (which in today's indie world probably means you're moving up) with typical jouissance. The simple arrangement allows lead singer Katie Stelmanis to shine and her spacious voice charms the song along. The rest of the band is spot on in execution. It's a terribly catchy song that resides at the intersection of Talking Heads Boulevard and Michael Mann Soundtrack Avenue.

Since releasing their debut album Feel It Break in 2011, Austra has been harvesting an increasingly larger following. Just this past weekend, they played with electronic giants Justice and M83 at shows in Toronto and Montreal. Little is known about their sophomore album, but we eagerly await its arrival.

Related >> Catching up with Austra

Related >> Do's and Don'ts of Osheaga 2012


The first official photograph of Daniel Day-Lewis as Abraham Lincoln (attached below) has been released by Entertainment Weekly and "uncanny" is too weak a word.

Directed by someone named Steven Spielberg, Lincoln, focuses on the last four months of the 16th President's life as he attempts to constitutionally abolish slavery and end the American Civil War (so don't expect any vampires, or ninja-fighting, or whatever the hell). The film also stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Robert Todd Lincoln, Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln, Tommy Lee Jones as Thaddeus Stevens, and Jared Harris as Ulysses S. Grant.

Last year an image of a costumed Day-Lewis surfaced via paparazzi, but this is first time we see the actor exactly as he will appear in the film, in character. Look at those pensive-ass eyes. Day-Lewis is famous for his towering performances and could there a more grand character to play than Lincoln? We can't wait for the Gettysburg Address.

Lincoln comes out November 9 (just in time to sweep the Oscars).


With an impressive medal haul this past weekend, third-place Team GB is putting big-time pressure on second-place Team USA. With 22 Gold, the Brits have already passed their Beijing total of 19, and are closing in on the United States’ 30. The Games’ second week has been loaded with Team GB favourites (Athletics, Cycling, Drinking, etc.) so things are looking up for the home team. We at TORO don’t really have a horse in this second-place race. As Canadians, watching Britain and the United States fight is like watching two older brothers kick each other in the balls — so we’re enjoying it.

Doyle’s Republic of China remained atop the leaderboard this weekend in terms of Golds won and medals overall. While China made gains in all events, particular success came in the geriatric sport of Badminton and the child-exploitation sport of Gymnastics.

As for Canada, we got a cycling medal over the weekend. Oh, and that cute trampolinist won Gold. That’s about it. Don't get us wrong, we're still proud of our athletes. But it seems Canada is following a disturbing trend. Like most Summer Olympics, the Canadian athletes pre-favoured to win medals are fizzling out, while the “unknown,” less sexy Canadians are doing the heavy lifting. But we've still got five days to go, right?

1. The People's Republic of China: 34 Gold, 20 Silver, 17 Bronze. Total: 71

2. The United States of America: 30 Gold, 16 Silver, 20 Bronze. Total 66

3. Great Britain: 22 Gold, 13 Silver, 12 Bronze. Total: 47

29. Canada: 1 Gold, 3 Silver, 6 Bronze. Total: 10

Related >> London 2012: Today's Must-Watch List


Alexandre Despatie Goes for Diving Gold After Brutal Injury, 2 p.m.

Just seven weeks after ripping open his scalp in Madrid, Alexandre Despatie will represent Canada in today’s 3m springboard diving final.

Despatie won Silver four years ago in Beijing, and seems to be Canada’s best hope for striking Gold on this the 14th day of the London Olympics. Despatie’s routine has admittedly become more conservative since the accident, so he’ll need a ballsy showing to get lucky.

Two Canadians to Face a Bunch of Drunks in High Jump, 2 p.m.

According to Athletics Canada Coach Alex Gardiner, Canadians Derek Drouin and Michael Mason have a great shot to win Gold in today’s high jump final. “[They’re] right back to among the Top 10 in the world,” he says.

Canada has not won a medal in high jump since we hosted the Games in Montreal. And like every other event at these games, Canadians are the underdogs going in, but Drouin and Mason face far less scrutiny then their competiton. Team GB’s Robbie Grabarz just last year spent two days in a pub after losing his government funding, and Russia’s Ivan Ukhov famously competed drunk at a meet in Switzerland.

Hopefully, the medal ceremony doesn’t end with nudity and remorseful making out.

Three Canadian Ladies Will Compete in Hurdles Semifinal, 7:15 p.m.

Awesomely named Nikkita Holder, Phylicia George and Jessica Zelinka will compete in tonight’s 100 metre hurdles, all with an excellent shot at glory. The three performed strongly in their individual heats.

TORO Woman Zelinka is looking rebound from her disappointing seventh-place showing in the heptathlon over the weekend. Zelinka was a projected Canadian star going into the Olympics, and we still have a lot of faith in her. Just look at those abs!

Related >> Highs and Lows of London 2012

Related >> TORO Woman: Canadian Olympian Jessica Zelinka


[html]Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master, which will not be premiering at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival (BOOO), now has a new poster, illustrating what the movie would look like to your average bumblebee. Visually it’s a clean break from the original poster, but again tells Joe Blow Movie Lover virtually nothing about the film’s plot or tone – unless “willfully obtuse” counts as a tone. The Master will see wide release September 21.



In times of tragedy and confusion, it can be hard to find the word to express our sadness. Thank God we have Will Ferrell.

Ferrell recently visited Conan O'Brien, video below, to publicly express his grief over the break-up of Twilight stars Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattison. Last week, Stewart admitted to cheating on Pattison with her Snow White and the Huntsmen director Rupert Sanders.

Evidently, Ferrell's depression is severe. We hope he pulls through.


BRONZE: Belarusian Hammer Thrower Thrown Out for Doping

Three-time world champion hammer thrower Ivan Tsikhan got the boot from London when his samples from Athens 2004 were found to be positive. The IOC stores doping samples for eight years after each Olympics to allow for retests.

It’s a shame that Tsikhan had to tarnish what has so far been a seemingly clean and successful Games. But we want to know more about this sample storing — that’s a lot of piss! Where do they keep it? What happens if there’s a fire? And where do they put the samples after the eight-year probation period? TORO asks the serious questions when no one else will.

SILVER: Canadian Makes It to Shot Put Final

Dylan Armstrong has made it to the shot put final on a seventh place throw of 20.49 metres.

Many consider Armstrong Canada’s best hope for our first Gold of the Games. He was Number 1 in the world last year but has struggled this season, thanks to an elbow injury. Armstrong's toughest competition in the final will come from the Americans, all of whom already have Olympic medals.

The Canadian big man is a proven athlete, but his greatest accomplishment has to be getting us excited about a sport that hasn’t been relevant since ancient Greece.  

GOLD: British Cyclist Admits to Crashing on Purpose

Yesterday, Team GB won Gold in the men’s cycling team sprint, but they did so via suspect methods. During the qualifying session, British cyclist Philip Hindes crashed on purpose, prompting a restart.

In sprint cycling, a team is disqualified when a trailing rider passes a teammate. Hindes appeared to be having trouble with his wheel in the qualifying round and so threw himself off the track. According to the rules, a crash is considered a false start.

“I just crashed. I did it on purpose to get a restart…it was all planned really,” said the German born Hindes. Team GB officials claimed the comment was lost in translation, as a result of Hindes lack of fluency in English.

In other news, a Toronto man tore up a winning lottery ticket because he couldn’t deal with the pressure of wealth, and a 43-year-old truck driver from Moosejaw turned down sex with Natalie Portman because he “had to mow the lawn that night.”

Related >> Medal Count: Team GB Arrives, Canada Meh


Team GB is making it harder for us to make fun of them. The home team now has six Gold medals and 18 in total. Even more distressing is their proficiency in canoe-related sports. That’s Canada’s shtick! What else is Britain going to take from us?

The Capitalists’ Republic of China has one more Gold medal than the United States of Chik-Fil-A. Somewhere in the darkest corner of hell, Richard Nixon is punching himself in the balls.

Canada still has only seven medals, and no Gold. This is good for the taxpayer but bad for patriotism. We’re proud of our medalists so far, but Team Canada could use some of America’s surplus chauvinism right about now.

1. The People’s Republic of China: 19 Gold, 11 Silver, 9 Bronze. Total: 39

2. The United States of America: 18 Gold, 9 Silver, 10 Bronze. Total: 37

3. Republic of Korea: 7 Gold, 2 Silver, 5 Bronze. Total: 14

27. Canada: 2 Silver, 5 Bronze. Total: 7

Related >> London 2012: Daily TORO Top 3

Related >> Samuel L. Jackson Really Loves Team USA


Brookyln indie band Grizzly Bear has released a new song, and it's terrific. With "Yet Again," attached below, the band has gone rock without abandoning their experimental roots.

The song is more up than Grizzly Bear's previous work. Particular emphasis is placed on the back beat and electric guitar. Remaining are the band's chapel-filling harmonies and Ed Droste's haunting baratone. The song then takes an abrupt left turn into what sounds like a zoo inhabited by wild instruments.

"Yet Again" will appear on Grizzly Bear's new album, ​Shields, out September 18. The band will make stops in Montreal on September 23, Toronto on September 26, and Vancouver on October 6.

Related >> TORO Reviews Grizzly Bear's Veckatimest


A Tennessee man is in custody for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend after mistaking Mitt Romney for her lover.

On July 22, Lowell Turpin, pictured above (sorry), discovered a picture of Mitt Romney on his girlfriend's Facebook page and became enraged. He then allegedly destroyed the laptop and punched his girlfriend in the face, even after she explained the identity of the man.

What an alledgedly stupid mound of turd. From the looks of him, Turpin could use lesson in justice, not to mention a bath. Our thoughts go to Turpin's hopefully ex-girlfriend.


Samuel L. Jackson has taken to Twitter to show his undying love for Team USA at these London 2012 Summer Olympics, and the Hollywood actor is one Bad-mothafucking-ton.

Jackson's fickle tweets take no prisoners, often deriding suspect judging or laughing at the misfortunes of lesser nations. Jackson tweets like the way he screams in his movies: Witness the all caps; the abundance of exclamation marks; the way "motherfucker" is shoehorned into every other word.

We knew Jackson was a sports fan (whenever he's filming in Toronto, Jackson gets front row seats to Raptors games) but this takes his passion to another level.

Below are some of Jackson's greatest hits, unfiltered for your enjoyment.

"Now That was a MUHSPRINTAFUKKAH of a race! GOLD FOR ADRIAN!!! Go USA!"

"WAIT A MINUTE! WTF?! Badfuqqinminton players tossed for THROWING games?! Really?"

"Can't imagine what kinda Fuckin' up musta been goin' on for Russia to win Silver! Gotta be Ass Busting worthy of our amusement!!"

"Okay, that was Drunk Lady Staggering Flip dismount! Made famous by many girls missing the top step in da club!"

"GURL GUNZ!! These lil' chick weightlifters are AHHFUKYYNMAZEN!!"


Every day, until the closing ceremonies, TORO presents the Top 3 stories of the 2012 London Olympics.

BRONZE: Roger Federer is the Highest Paid Olympian

According to the Vancouver Sun, Roger Federer is the highest earning athlete at the 2012 London Olympics, with estimated earnings of $54.3 million, or twice the combined Olympic budget of Africa, some of Asia and that island in Cast Away.

Following Federer in yearly earnings is LeBron James ($53 million), Kobe Bryant ($52.3 million), and Maria Sharapova ($27.1 million). Basketball and tennis stars dominate the list, with Usain Bolt ($20.3 million) being the only exception.

Allowing professional athletes to compete in the Olympics admittedly makes the Games more exciting. But we’ve seen enough Home Hardware commercials to know that most athletes live modest, if not poor lives. The Olympics are their only time to shine (and make some extra cash if they’re lucky). Does Federer think about this when he’s swimming in his pool of hundred dollar bills?

SILVER: Canada Takes Advantage of Badminton Half-Assers

We take back all the bad things we said about those disqualified Badminton players that tried to lose on purpose. Their “poor” sportsmanship allowed Canadians Alex Bruce and Michele Li to surge into the semifinals. Bruce and Li play Japan today.

And while Canada celebrates, everyone else remains bitter. “The Chinese started this,” says Korean Badminton coach Sung Han-kook, “they did it first.” The London organizing committee has also decided not to refund the fans who booed the shamed athletes off the court.

Canada’s hokey reputation as a nation of good sports is finally paying off.

GOLD: Bradley Wiggins Gets Wasted

British cyclist Bradley Wiggins celebrated his recent Gold medal victory Wednesday night by getting ham-showed. Wiggins provided a live play-by-play of his indulgence on Twitter. The tweets were insightful: “Getting wasted,” read one. “Blind drunk at the minute,” read another.

Wiggins is riding an amazing high. Less than two weeks ago, he became the first Brit to win the Tour de France and yesterday he set Britain into a frenzy by becoming the second Brit to win gold on home soil.  

Good for Wiggins! It’s nice to know that super humans get wasted like the rest of us. We can’t wait until Canada gets another shot at public drunken Olympic glory.

Related >> Medal Count: Korea Kicks Ass, Canada Stll Gold-less


There’s been uproar over Chick-fil-A throwing its drumstick into the political arena by opposing gay marriage, but it’s certainly proven one thing: the way to reach the average American politically isn’t through their heart, mind, or soul, it’s through their (severely eroded) intestinal tract.

After former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee declared this past Wednesday “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day,” thousands of hungry Americans flocked to their local fried giblet emporium for the sweet, greasy taste of traditional values. “We’ve got to take a stand,” said one customer. “I can’t stand up because I just ate at Chick-fil-A,” said another.

The good news for gay people and their ever-growing fanbase: a lawsuit claiming Chick-fil-A causes cancer is still before the courts, so these fowl fundamentalists will probably be dead soon.

In Other News: Korea is Kicking Ass at the Olympics


Despite overwhelming evidence that no one is actually looking forward to a third Ghostbusters movie, Dan Aykroyd has again confirmed the film will happen, with or without Bill Murray. Speaking to Metro, he confessed: “Now we've got the studio on side. We've tried a few concepts which weren't right but now we've got a good structure and will make it happen ... I can tell you [Murray] won't be involved ... It's sad but we're passing it on to a new generation. Ghostbusters 3 can be a successful movie without Bill.”

The thing is, Aykroyd is right; people will pay good money to see Ghostbusters 3, whether it stars Bill Murray, Brian Doyle-Murray, or the guy who played Murray on Flight of the Conchords. They may not look forward to it, or remember it, or enjoy it any way, but they will pay to see it. Success!

In the same interview Aykroyd offers his thoughts on aliens, aliens who have clearly detached some nodes in his brain: “They're certainly alien to our four dimensions. I'd say some are alien to our planet ... We're looking at a phenomenon which is probably extra-dimensional and extra-terrestrial.” Probably extra-dimensional? We’ll have to wait for Carl Sagan’s CGI cameo in Ghostbusters 4 to get confirmation.

In Other News: Paranormal Activity 4 Trailer Drops