T.O. is loaded with artists who take the kinds of risks that keep the scene hot. Here's the cream.
1 Chris Landreth Landreth's 14-minute animated psychodrama, Ryan , is the best Canadian film of the year. Stunning computer animation scores it major points, but it wins top place on insight and empathy.
2 Atom Egoyan and Hussain Amarshi The filmmaker and the film distributor (Mongrel Media) teamed up to open the Camera Bar and Media Gallery in the Queen West art district. Best feature: the conversation pit, fireplace included. Now we can talk to each other about movies.
3 Alison Murray Recently landed in Toronto after making street-style dance films in the UK, Murray saw her debut feature, Mouth To Mouth , turn out to be the year's strongest unreleased film.
4 640 480 Video Collective 640 480 kept busy in 04, giving us everything from sharp Video Valentines to brilliant art clashes of performers remixed by "post-producers."
5 Ali Kazimi Kazimi's Continuous Journey documented the story of British Indian migrants spurned by Canada in 1914, and did it with rigorous original research.
6 Guy Maddin Maddin practically lives in Toronto now, so although the fevered The Saddest Music In The World is typically Winnipeg, Toronto made it happen.
7 Sudz Sutherland With Love, Sex And Eating The Bones , Sutherland revived the nearly dead black romantic comedy and brought it home to Toronto. His story of a porn-addicted brother looking for love was risky, hot and hilarious.
8 York University Department of Film AND Video Utterly transformed after moribund years, this is now the breeding ground of some of the best student films in the country. The faculty includes acclaimed filmmakers Brenda Longfellow , Lynne Fernie , Philip Hoffman , John Greyson and Laurence Green , with profs like Janine Marchessault and Michael Zryd injecting the theory.
9 Peter Raymont Raymont's Shake Hands With The Devil: The Journey Of Roméo Dallaire hit the crest of the Rwanda movie tide. It's even-toned and carefully constructed, but full of blistering images and ideas.
10 Nurjahan Akhlaq Akhlaq screened Flight at this spring's Images festival, where it stood out in the torrent of shorts. An elegy after murder, it makes sophisticated use of image and sound for emotional effect.