TIFF 2007 (Eric’s diary): Waking late, feeling great

Our Rating

Today began, surprisingly, around 12:30 PM. Who knew I would require 11 hours of sleep after my 13 1/2-hour snooze-athon the previous night? It’s very, very fortunate that our first movie didn’t start until 2:45 PM, because it could easily have been a few hours earlier, and we would have slept through 50% of our TIFF screenings at that point. What a waste of time and effort that would have been… for Juliette Binoche.

That’s right, Dan and I were four rows away from the Binoche herself as she introduced her new film, Le Voyage du Ballon Rouge (6/8), and indulged the audience in a Q&A session after the screening. Binoche (she insists that I call her “Jules” when we’re out clubbing, but I’ll remain formal here) was adorable and engaging, although she was wearing something that looked like pieces of many horrible outfits stitched together to make a new horrible outfit. I’m just reporting what happened, everyone.

I can also report that the movie was very good, although extremely long. I can’t say my conflicting sleep schedules didn’t make it a little hard to keep my eyes open, but for the last half hour it was the movie’s fault. I mean, okay, the red balloon is a metaphor. Credits?

After a rather upsetting egg salad sandwich hastily purchased and scarfed down in line, it was time for a real meal. And boy, did we find one at Hero Certified Burgers, possibly one of the best burgers I’ve ever had. And the french fries were effing amazing, prepared exactly like “chips” served in the UK. So delicious. So fried.

By the time we had completed Food Orgy ’07, it was time to make tracks for the Winter Garden Theatre to see Guy Maddin’s My Winnipeg (8/8). This theater was truly stunning, built in 1913, classic and elaborate with a forest theme extending to synthetic foliage hanging from the ceiling. This unexpected brush with theatre history was made even more special when I found out it was totally a porn theater in the ’70s. (Read more about the Elgin and Winter Garden Theatres here.)

The screening itself was also unexpectedly thrilling, as Guy Maddin himself took the stage to perform live narration (not commentary) during the film. The movie was brilliant, and seeing it this way made it even more unique, as he admitted in the Q&A that he did not plan on providing live narration for this movie again.

Day 2 of the festival has been a rousing success: one good movie, one great movie, two Q&As, and a new desire to hang out with Guy Maddin’s mom in Winnipeg.


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