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MOVIE CHEAT SHEET: Likely TIFF winners

Louis CK stars in I Love You Daddy, one Brian Gasparek's picks for TIFF.

Louis CK stars in I Love You Daddy, one Brian Gasparek's picks for TIFF.

BRIAN GASPAREK/ 24 HOURS

The Big Story:

 TIFF Top 5

It’s finally here, people. TIFF 2017 has arrived and Toronto is preparing for its annual onslaught of killer films that will be premiered and showcased in the city over the next week and a half. Amongst the stellar lineup of titles screening this year, here are the top 5 flicks that I’m most excited about (and you should be too). Take note!

mother!

Darren Aronofsky’s heavily hyped, mysterious psych-horror flick starring Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem is finally being unveiled. Although we still have no idea what it’s about, it’s guaranteed to be terrifying and mind blowing.

Long Time Running

Canadian filmmakers Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier’s doc that follows Gord Downie on his final tour with The Tragically Hip last summer, while living with terminal brain cancer, is going to be a heavy, emotional tearjerker. Whether you love the band or not, this is going to be special.

The Shape of Water

Although Guillermo del Toro’s ’60s-set forbidden love story about a mute woman who falls for a government-protected fish creature sounds completely bonkers, the trailer is stunning and undeniably captivating. The flick looks like a mix of beautiful, creepy and sweet. It will be a hit.

Battle of the Sexes

Emma Stone and Steve Carrell are the perfect combo to re-enact the real life events that took place surrounding the 1973 ‘battle of the sexes’ tennis match between Billie-Jean King and Bobby Riggs. It looks both heavy on the heart and hilarious.

Molly’s Game

Aaron Sorkin’s directorial debut about the secret world of high-stakes poker, starring Jessica Chastain and Idris Elba in lead …this is a no-brainer.

Honourable mention:

I Love You Daddy

I’ll admit it. I’m dying to see what Louis C.K.’s secret black-and-white film is really all about.

FliCK HITS:

Pirates of the delusional

Following this summer’s god-awful Dead Men Tell No Tales, it became glaringly obvious that the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise needed to be sunk. Every sequel over the past decade and a half has managed to be shockingly worse than the last (an impressive feat in garbage storytelling). Despite the latest Pirates offering suffering a critical massacre and a $70 million dollar box office dip from its predecessor, producer Jerry Bruckheimer still saw it as a hit and thinks a sixth film should be made. According to crazy Uncle Jerry, “I think it did phenomenal … you’re talking about the fifth in the series in a down market … The media likes to run with the reviews and we didn’t get great reviews, so they like to say it didn’t do well. But god, it’s at what, $790 [million] now? It’s amazing … I hope we can continue to make it ...” Jerry, you’re so nutty. Enough with the pirate turds. Have some credibility.

A better Trevorrow

Another week, another director ousted from an upcoming Star Wars flick due to “creative differences.” It was just announced that Lucasfilm has relieved Colin Trevorrow of helming duties for 2019’s Episode IV. Let’s make a deal. Instead of freaking out about another creative issue within our beloved intergalactic franchise, let’s embrace this “mutual parting of ways” (firing) with open arms. We totally dodged a bullet here. Trevorrow’s last film, The Book of Henry, was horrendous. And his only blockbuster to date, Jurassic World, was totally average. Who wanted this guy tampering with Star Wars anyway? Now let’s cross our fingers for a solid directorial replacement, like Ava DuVernay. Or how about a J.J. Abrams return? Make the selection something special, Lucasfilm

Aladdin gets White Prince

It was just announced that blond-haired, blue-eyed, American actor Billy Magnussen has been added to Guy Ritchie’s upcoming live-action Aladdin film as a completely new character named Prince Anders, another rival to Aladdin. Come on, Disney, what are you thinking? Why do you feel the need to alter a classic story to accommodate a new main character? And why is that character a token American white dude? It’s based on an Arabian folktale. Sigh. I hope this makes even the tiniest bit of sense.

BEST AND WORST IN THEATRES:

Scary good: It

Talk about frightening, when the It reviews were held back until mid-week, I was terrified that Andrés Muschietti’s killer-looking adaptation of the Stephen King classic was going to end up being another deceptive bust. But rest easy. Critics are praising It for being a freaky, perfectly-casted film, that pays a strong homage to its source material. Think It meets Stranger Things. It’s a horror-adventure flick that’s worth all of our attention this weekend.

No one home: Home Again

Critics are calling Reese Witherspoon’s new rom-com a cinematic dumpster fire. It’s being described as neither funny, nor romantic. It’s superficial, bland and unrelatable. Skip it and never look back.

Reel Talk:

“I know that all the big stars hate me to say this, but I don’t want to risk 80 peoples’ jobs just to say I got big huevos on The Tonight Show. Because that’s what happens. I think a big star [Tom Cruise] just sprained an ankle doing a stunt, and 80 people are out of a job … we have stunt people who do that stuff.”Hollywood’s resident badass, Danny Trejo, on the selfishness of A-listers deciding to do their own stunts.