Talk to any professional film critic, and they’ll tell you about the pleasures of the Toronto International Film Festival — and of its anxieties. It is, in many ways, the all-you-can-eat buffet of film fests, a smorgasboard with literally hundreds of titles to choose from, including most of the big fall titles vying for year-end prestige and awards consideration, and, well, there’s only so many hours in the day. Your film editor will be in Toronto for nearly a week, and even with that much time on the ground, I feel like I’m only getting a fraction of the experience, but nonetheless, here are a few of the titles I’m looking forward to taking in.
If Beale Street Could Talk
Two years ago, Barry Jenkins took the indie world by storm and pulled the most memorable Best Picture upset of this lifetime with his second feature, the stirring and gorgeous Moonlight. It was 2016’s best narrative film; the best documentary of the year was the James Baldwin essay film I Am Not Your Negro, so it seems fitting that our top one-to-watch at TIFF fuses those two important artists. Jenkins pens this screen adaptation of Baldwin’s 1974 novel, a Harlem-set love story; his cast includes Regina King, Teyonah Parris, Michael Beach, KiKi Layne, and Stephan James.