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Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

September 8, 2009 at 1:08 PM

Off to Toronto . . .

I’m heading out tomorrow morning to attend the Toronto International Film Festival, which begins Thursday. It’ll be, for me, six days of nonstop moviegoing, interviews (on tap: Clive Owen, Penelope Cruz, Nick Hornby, Jane Campion and more), popcorn-and-Diet-Coke-and-hardly-anything-else consumption (this is going to be one embarrassing expense report) — and, of course, blogging. Here are just a few of the movies I’ll be catching there:
“The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus”: Terry Gilliam’s new movie, featuring Heath Ledger’s final performance (completed, in ways I don’t yet comprehend, by Colin Farrell, Johnny Depp and Jude law)
“Broken Embraces”: Pedro Almodovar’s latest, starring his frequent muse Cruz.
“The Men Who Stare at Goats.” This satire sounds wonderfully weird: George Clooney stars in a tale about a top-secret U.S. military unit with psychic powers.
“Up in the Air”: Clooney again, this time in Jason Reitman’s comedy about a professional downsizer. Big Oscar buzz for this one.
“Dorian Grey”. A new version of the Oscar Wilde tale, starring Colin Firth and Ben Barnes.
“La Danse”: Frederick Wiseman’s documentary about the Paris Opera Ballet. Wiseman is a legendary filmmaker, and ballet is my great love, so I can’t wait for this one.
Plus “Jennifer’s Body,” the Coen brothers’ “A Serious Man,” Francois Ozon’s “Le refuge,” and lots more, from a city that during the festival becomes crammed full of movie stars. A bit of Toronto name-dropping: At the festival I once shared an elevator with Anthony Hopkins — who, if you want to know, answers his cell phone with a charming “Hi, it’s Tony.” And passed Colin Firth in a hallway; he nodded at me most politely. And had a similarly random encounter with Orlando Bloom. And stood very close to Keira Knightley and her fabulous Chanel gown at a party. And, in a coffeeshop, had some guy who clearly was trying out his TIFF pick-up skills pretend to mistake me for Nicole Kidman. (No, I don’t look a bit like Nicole Kidman, more’s the pity. Hope the line worked better with somebody else.) Fun stuff. I’ll be back online Thursday, with plenty of news. See you then!

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