I'm writing this column between TIFF reviews, because the festival has become a churning whirlpool, pulling everyone and everything into it; just yesterday morning, for example, I'm sure I heard the soft sound of weeping in a dark screening room, and I was watching a comedy.
We'll have time to discuss all that next week - don't forget to bookmark NOW's TIFF 2012 site for new interviews, capsules, updates and videos! - but what about this weekend? Sure, Labour Day is the slowest moviegoing weekend of the year and no studio would be caught dead dumping a good movie into it, but there must be something worth the price of admission, yes?
TIFF's wrapping up its Summer In France series with a 70mm run of Jacques Tati's Playtime, which is nothing to sniff at if you're a fan of Tati's meticulously composed comedies. It's only screening thrice - tonight (Friday) at 6:30 pm, tomorrow (Saturday) at 1 pm and Sunday at 7 pm - so book your tickets quickly. And if you notice any distortion, flickering or framing issues, alert the staff immediately; that 70mm rig has to be in tip-top shape when TIFF screens Paul Thomas Anderson's The Master next month.
Speaking of things that have wrapped up: I may be done with my Free Flicks hosting duties at Harbourfront Centre for the year, but the film component of this weekend's Ashkenaz Festival will give you good reason to go down to the Studio Theatre on Monday afternoon, when the Fern Lindzon Quartet supplies live musical accompaniment for Buster Keaton's magnificent silent film Sherlock Jr. at 2:30 pm.
Finally, there's always that restoration of Jaws, which TIFF is bringing back to the Lightbox to close out the summer schedule, screening tonight through Sunday at 3 pm and 8 pm. If you still haven't caught up to it ... well, what the hell, man? I've only been yammering about its wonderfulness for the last two months. Go see it. Go, go, go.
Alternately, you could catch up to Premium Rush, one of the best movies of the summer. And given that both Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Michael Shannon will be coming back to Toronto with big-deal TIFF premieres (Looper and The Iceman, respectively), you can even count it as a festival-related activity. Not that you need an excuse to see Premium Rush, of course. Tell them I say hi.