1. Harmony Korine’s “Spring Breakers” starring Selena Gomez and James Franco screening at Venice in competition before TIFF. This is a hot one! BFF four friends, Brit, Candy, Cotty and Faith go way off track looking for something to take the edge off the banality of dorm life. James Franco is remarkable!
2. Daniele Cipri’s drama “The Son Did It” screening at Venice on route to TIFF is a directorial debut from this genius of cinematography. Set in Sicily, this visually dazzling story with an outstanding performance from Toni Servillo, will transport you to another world.
3. Walter Salles’ drama “On The Road” is based on one of this centuries’ great works, the cult classic novel by Jack Kerouac (1951) that defined a generation. The cast includes Kristen Stewart, Amy Adams, Kirsten Dunst and Viggo Mortensen. The story is based on Kerouac’s own experiences and is considered a “defining work of the postwar Beat Generation.” The ‘Beat Generation’ was inspired by jazz, poetry and drugs. “Experience is the Best Teacher.”
4. Nick Cassavetes’ “Yellow”, covers huge territory in the complicated life of LA beauty, Mary Holmes, haunted by a dark past. This dark comedy starring Sienna Miller, Gena Rowlands, Melanie Griffith and Ray Liotta is complex and riveting. This is what we might expect from a director who has such an incredible list of credits as a director (The Notebook), screenwriter (Blow), and many actor and musician credits to his name.
5. Bahman Ghobadi’s (Caméra d’Or–winner A Time for Drunken Horses)
“Rhino Season” stars Monica Bellucci and Iranian superstar Behrouz Vossough.
Ghobadi based the movie on the tragic story of his friend and Kurdish poet, who was unjustly incarcerated during Iran’s Islamic Revolution. This movie follows a mesmerizing, tragic love story over 3 decades utilizing the most beautiful and powerful cinematography that leaves an indelible impression with the viewer.
6. Dante Ariola’s directorial debut “Arthur Newman” stars Colin Firth, Anne Heche and Emily Blunt. Ariola has crafted a compelling story that allows us to experience the vicarious thrill of doing something we may normally only daydream about - throwing it all away, and living as someone else.
7. Directors Tom Tykwer (Run Lola Run) and Lana and Andy Wachowski (Matrix) have teamed up for “Cloud Atlas”, a movie based on the award winning post apocalyptic, sci-fi novel by David Mitchell. This intriguing and complicated story knits together characters across millennium in 6 interrelated stories. The characters are reincarnations of the same soul, identified by a birthmark. Starring Tom Hanks, Halle Berry and Hugh Grant expect something thought provoking and original.
8. Directors Scott McGehee and David Siegel (The Deep End, Bee Season) turn the Henry James novella “What Maisie Knew” into a contemporary movie, set in NYC. “What Maisie Knew” stars Julianne Moore, Joanna Vanderham and child star Onata Aprile. The story surrounds 7-year old Maisie who is at the epicenter of a custody battle between her divorcing parents one an aging rock star and the other a wealthy art dealer. “A grown-up film about childhood and a scathing look at two childish grown-ups, wickedly amusing and cuttingly insightful.”
9. Mike Newell (Four Weddings & A Funeral, Harry Potter) brings a new dramatic adaptation by David Nicholls of Charles Dickens’ classic Great Expectations to the screen. Starring Ralph Fiennes as Magwitch, Helena Bonham Carter as Miss Havisham, Jason Flemyng plays Joe Gargery and Jeremy Irvine is Pip. Filmed on location in Northamptonshire and Holdenby House in the UK, will the handsome lovelorn orphan turned London gentleman survive the tortures of Miss Havisham’s twisted mind?
10. Anurag Kashyap’s hindi gangster crime thriller “Gangs of Wasseypur”, comes with in two epic films. Seasoned Bollywood indie director Kashyap was spotlighted at Cannes and on myETVmedia for his bold approach to filmmaking earlier this year. “Gangs of Wasseypur” is his first ‘commercial, mainstream Indian film’. Kashyap was at TIFF in 2010 with actor/writer Kalki Koechlin for their award winning film “That Girl In Yellow Boots.”