Dench is the queen of Venice, while Toronto highlights Streep in August, Jason Reitman's Labor Day, Swinton as a vampire and super-thin Dallas Buyers Club members McConaughey and Leto...
As the Venice Film Festival wrapped up last weekend with its surprising award winners, led by the Roman ring-road documentary Sacro GRA, the Toronto Film Festival got underway in Canada. Both festivals are launching pads for movies seeking awards momentum, so the stars were all out promoting themselves on the red carpets.
One of the big attention-grabbers out of Venice was Philomena, the true story of a woman's search for the son she was forced to give up for adoption. The film won two top awards at Venice, and Judi Dench has leapt to the top of the list of Oscar hopefuls with her sensitive, emotionally raw performance. The film opens in November in the UK and in January in America. Watch the trailer for Philomena.
The most notable Toronto debut this week was August: Osage County, with an all-star cast including Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Chris Cooper, Ewan McGregor, Benedict Cumberbatch and Abigail Breslin. Streep is catching everyone's eye as the sniping matriarch. Although the film doesn't open in US and UK cinemas until December, the trailer promises several ripping performances. Read the full piece here.
Jason Reitman's new movie Labor Day also screened in Toronto. And this week we got to see a key clip from the dark and gritty thriller featuring Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin. It looks like a striking change of pace for Reitman, best known for Juno and Up in the Air. The film hits cinemas early next year. Watch the first clip from Labor Day here.
Another Toronto film promises seriously offbeat performances from Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston. Only Lovers Left Alive is a quirky centuries-long romance between two vampires from art-house filmmaker Jim Jarmusch (Broken Flowers). The film also screens at festivals in London, New York, Australia and Brazil over the next month. And two new clips promise a vampire movie unlike anything we've seen before. Watch 2 clips from Only Lovers Left Alive here.
And finally, another Toronto premiere sparking awards talk is Dallas Buyers Club, a drama about smuggling alternative Aids medications into Texas. In the trailer and clips, we can see that Matthew Mcconaughey and Jared Leto give strongly resonant performances that transcend their astonishing weight-loss. The film opens in November in America and in February in Britain. Watch the trailer for Dallas Buyers Club here.