TIFF 2018 Review: THE DIVE (Israel 2018) ***

Movie Reviews of films that will be playing at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) in 2018. Go to TIFF 2018 Movie Reviews and read reviews of films showing at the festival.

The Dive Poster
When a family patriarch dies, three brothers must put aside their differences to carry out their father’s last wishes, in Yona Rozenkier’s tender yet analytical debut examining what it means to be human.

Director:

Yona Rozenkier

When a family patriarch dies,  prodigal son Yoav (Yoel Rozenkier) returns to the sparsely populated kibbutz where he was raised.  He is greeted by his mother, his elder brother Itai (Yona Rozenkier), and his younger brother Avishai (Micha Rozenkier), who is about to ship off to perform his military service in Lebanon. Yoav is an ex-officer traumatized by his experiences, while Itai remains a serviceman and believes fiercely in a man’s patriotic duty. Their conflicting perspectives generate a deep rift in Avi. 

 The title THE DIVE refers to the act that the three brothers must perform – to deposit their father’s remains in an underwater cave, an excuse for the film to exhibit some superb underwater cinematography.  

Rozenkier (his first feature) successfully captures the male chauvinist world of the three bothers and how their lives are adversely affected

The film is ultimately about something much more profound: what it means to be human, made more believable as the story is autobiographical.

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysRi5yC2MRI

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TIFF 2018 Review: THE OTHER STORY (Israel 2018) ****

Movie Reviews of films that will be playing at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) in 2018. Go to TIFF 2018 Movie Reviews and read reviews of films showing at the festival.

The Other Story Poster
Strong female protagonists have been the mainstay of many Avi Nesher films. In ‘The Other Story’, two rebellious young women – one fleeing the chaos of secular hedonism for the disciplined …See full summary »

Director:

Avi Nesher

Writers:

Avi Nesher (co-writer), Noam Shpancer (co-writer)

THE OTHER STORY is one of the BEST Jewish films I have seen, succeeding for the fact that it has quite a good story, and one related to Jewish mores.  The film follows two rebellious young women, one fleeing the chaos of secular hedonism for the disciplined comforts of faith, the other desperate to transcend her oppressive religious upbringing for sexual and spiritual freedom, cross paths unexpectedly in Jerusalem — with startling consequences — in this empowering drama from Avi Nesher (PAST LIFE). 

 The film begins with Yonathan returning from the U.S. to Jerusalem, called by his ex-wife to do whatever crooked means possible to prevent their daughter Anati from marrying by defaming the groom.  Meanwhile, Yonatan’s dad gets him involved in another couple’s dispute over custardy of their child.   It is fucked up people doing fucked up things to un-fuck up their lives – a sort of dysfunctional family with a thriller element thrown in for good measure.  

THE OTHER STORY is totally unpredictable, hilarious while remaining smart and believable.  The best surprise in this crown-pleaser is the happy ending that had the audience applauding at the end credits.

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/283720820

TIFF 2018 Review: JEREMIAH TERMINATOR LEROY (USA/UK/Canada 2018) **

Movie Reviews of films that will be playing at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) in 2018. Go to TIFF 2018 Movie Reviews and read reviews of films showing at the festival.

A young woman named Savannah Knoop spends six years pretending to be the celebrated author JT LeRoy, the made-up literary persona of her sister-in-law.

Director:

Justin Kelly

Writers:

Justin KellySavannah Knoop (memoir) | 1 more credit »

Laura Albert (Laura Dern) writes tough, insightful fiction under a pseudonym, JT LeRoy. Her JT is not just a pen name but a whole persona, a teenage boy from West Virginia living a dangerous life as a truck stop sex worker.  Laura was born in Brooklyn a generation earlier, and grew up in New York’s punk scene.  Writing books such as The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things as JT gives her complete freedom to explore the darker regions of human experience. Readers and the media love it so much that they begin to demand JT in person.  

As journalists press for interviews with JT, turmoil mounts with Laura’s husband Geoffrey (Jim Sturgess) and sister-in-law Savannah (Kristen Stewart).  Partly from desperation, partly for kicks, they conspire to have Savannah don a wig and sunglasses, adjust her voice, and become the teenage boy author.   Despite everything being based on a true story, Kelly’s film is extremely dull.  He makes no attempt to make the events authentic or to make Savannah believable as JT.  Whenever she appears as JT, she mumbles all along and the media and everyone takes it in from Cannes to Paris to the U.S. 

 Worst of all is the pretentious bit at the film’s end where Laura preaches to the audience that everyone has to be the person he or she is.

JUNE 2018 EUROPEAN Films & Screenplays

May 2018 EUROPEAN Films & Screenplays

EUROPEAN Short Film and Screenplay Festival

festival posterPREY, 13min., UK, Thriller/Horror

festival posterCHERI, 6min., France, Thriller/Suspense

festival posterAFTER LOVE, 6min., Hungary, Experimental/Romance

festival posterHANDS, 6min., UK, Experimental/Dance

festival posterTRUMPETS IN THE SKY, 12min., Belguim, Sci-Fi

festival posterTHE SUPER RECOGNISER, 11min., UK, Sci-Fi

festival posterSOLUK (BREATH), 5min., Turkey, Sci-Fi

festival posterAFTER WE HAVE LEFT OUR HOMES, 8min., UK, Sci-Fi

****

Producer/Director: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Festival Moderators: Kierston Drier, Shepsut Wilson
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: Kimberly Villarruel

Festival Directors: Mary Cox, Rachel Elder, Natasha Levy

Camera Operators: John Johnson, Isabal Cupryn, Aser Santos Jr., Zack Arch

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