PACKAGED GOODS: THE ART OF THE EDIT. See listing. Rating: NNNN
As the subtitle indicates, TIFF's latest collection of commercials and music videos is built around the rhythms of the cut, but that doesn't mean you'll be sitting through an hour of assaultive, frenetic spots. Instead, curator Rae Ann Fera moves things pleasantly from fast to slow and back again, shifting the pace as in a well-conceived dance mix.
That allows this edition to find room for some great long-form pieces, like a three-minute AVG ad that uses an intriguing toothpick analogy for its antivirus protection software, an infectious Lady Gaga endorsement of the social uses of Google's Chrome browser and a hell of a spot for the National Ballet of Canada.
A split-screen music video for Radiolab's Symmetry showcases the power of visual juxtaposition, while a BBC promo for its nature documentaries - with David Attenborough reading the lyrics to Louis Armstrong's What A Wonderful World - makes the song's overplayed sentiment feel fresh again.
I'm still not sure what Chrysler was trying to say in that Clint Eastwood Super Bowl ad about it being halftime in America, but there are worse things to listen to than two minutes of Eastwood's gravel-voiced exhortations. And fantasy spots for Cravendale and Canal Plus demonstrate that funny animals are always advertising gold.
The program will be followed by a conversation between Fera and Big Sky Edit's Chris Franklin. I'm thinking you'll want to stay for that.
Screens Wednesday (August 22) at at TIFF Bell Lightbox.