The Toronto International Film Festival brings new life to the city every year by attracting thousands of spectators from all corners of the country, acquiring the world’s best films, and inviting the biggest celebrities to premiere their movies. This year was no exception!
I, like many TIFF goers, fan-girled the eff out, and I have zero shame in saying this! I had the chance to cover the festival for the fourth year in a row for The Watchlist, and discovered some gems worth sharing. I must note that I am note paid to promote anything listed below. When you find something worth sharing, you should simply share them. 🙂
Here are my Top 5 TIFF favourites this year:
1. LA LA LAND
La La Land revives what has been a tired genre as of late. The imaginative musical sees Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone together again in Damien Chazelle’s latest masterpiece. The story revolves around a jazz musician and an aspiring actress who find love in the City of Angels. It’s a simple story Chazelle brilliantly paints into a colourful and whimsical portrait by incorporating influences from his favourite iconic musicals. It will inspire you to dream a little bigger and dig a little deeper for self belief and courage when the going gets tough.
2. MANCHESTER BY THE SEA
Ben Affleck who?! Casey Affleck proves that he is worthy of an Oscar and moreover, the most talented Affleck to come out of Boston in Manchester by the Sea. Affleck loses himself in the role of Lee Chandler, a man who after losing everything, is forced to return home to become the legal guardian of his late brother’s son. The film is written and directed by Kenneth Lonergan and co-stars Kyle Chandler (hubby hubba), Michelle Williams and newcomer, Lucas Hedges. It’ll make you laugh, cry, groan, moan – it’ll basically turn you into a slew of human emojis for two hours. IT’S SO WORTH IT!
3. STATION COLD BREW
Light, refreshing with a hint of sweetness. Station Cold Brew has become the IT beverage in Toronto for all the right reasons. They were a sponsor for The Watchlist, and got me through early morning interviews and late night prep work. I highly recommend this for all the coffee fans out there and those looking for some pep in their step.
4. MARC ANTHONY’S CLEAR DRY SHAMPOO
I don’t think I’m alone when I say unwashed hair is the best looking hair. It’s easier to style and it always photographs the better! I found Marc Anthony’s Clear Dry Shampoo in a gift bag given out by Elevation Pictures during the festival and I used it religiously. It doesn’t leave a white residue plus it smells uh-mazing! Try it out, ladies, and let me know what you think!
5. TORONTO POPCORN COMPANY
Popcorn for the win! Thanks to Elevation Pictures once again for this awesome find. Toronto Popcorn Company call themselves Toronto’s best popcorn which is a bold statement but damn it they sure know how to back it up. They have a unique line of popcorn flavours including Jalapeño Cheddar, Cinnamon Caramel, Maple Bacon, and my favourite, Honey Mustard. I’m very close to backing up their statement, but will fully commit once they create a cheesecake flavoured popcorn. Come on, guys!