As more and more TIFF press releases roll out, I always get excited for the Vanguard and Midnight Madness sidebars as they are pretty genre heavy and often transgressive or experimental without being too arty (i.e. Wavelengths). New films from directors Barry “Wag The Dog” Levinson, Rob “Devil’s Rejects” Zombie, Michel “Eternal Sunshine” Gondry, Ben “Kill List” Wheatley, Don “Beastmaster” Coscarelli, Martin “In Bruges” McDonagh and a host of new genre directors to discover which is part of the thrill of film festivals, both large and small.
Both programmes just went live on the TIFF website, for our thirsty eyes to devour and my initial reaction is that the Midnight Madness program has a significant American focus this year. No Asian Martial Arts flicks or Miike films; no rock documentaries; gone are the Euro-horror entries as well, signaling that the French New Wave (of horror) is taking a break. And this year’s films are loaded with celebrities: Colin Farell, Chris Walken, Paul Giamatti, Lena Heady, Sam Rockwell, Karl Urban, Eli Roth, Harry Dean Stanton, Woodey Harrelson, Tom Waits, Clancy Brown and Udo Kier. That is not to say in the slightest that the content of these films will be any more wild, gruesome and world class than they always are, but it might make for a very busy red carpet this year! Also, points to anyone who can make a coherent sentence using all the evocative titles on display for Midnight.
The Vanguard Programme is even weirder and more exotic and looks to be full of discoveries. If you are doing TIFF this year, you’ll pretty much find me at every one of these films.
All titles for both programmes can be found below:
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