World Film Festival Midway Report

The 32nd edition of the Montreal World Film Festival is in full swing with plenty of interesting films from around the globe.

"The Magic Hour" is a hilarious comedy from Japan, written and directed by Koki Mitani. Bingo gets caught with the girlfriend of his crime boss. His boss gives him a chance to redeem himself by finding a legendary sniper named Della Togashi.
Bingo is pressed for time and has no idea where to find him. Keeping in mind that no one has seen a clear picture of Della's face, Bingo decides to hire a struggling actor named Taiki Murata to play the role of the sniper. Taiki is looking forward to playing a role in a gangster movie and Bingo must do his best to convince his boss that Taiki is actually Della. Just as a gang war is about to erupt, the lives of these characters are about to spin out of control. The script of this film is very well written. It's a barrel of laughs from start to finish and not predictable. It's not like many of the sleazy Hollywood "so called" comedy movies that look for below the belt (pun intended) humour. This film actually makes a real effort to find comedy in crazy situations. Acting and directing was also top notch.

"Absurdistan" is a co-production between Germany and Azerbaijan. This comedic story takes place in some remote village between Europe and Asia. The village is starved for water. Young couple Aya and Temelko want to be together but the village needs someone to step up to the plate to solve this issue as soon as possible. The men in this village are lazy good for nothings while the women slave away working at home and some are maintaining a day job as well. When they realize that their men will not make any effort to solve this problem, the women decide to go on strike and the gender lines are drawn. Temelko is the only male who makes an effort to figure out a solution before this feud gets out of hand. Overall an amusing movie.

There are still plenty of films to look forward to. "Mes Stars Et Moi" from France features well-known performers such as Catherine Deneuve and Emmanuelle Beart. The story is about a man obsessed with three particular film stars and these ladies get together to put a stop to his meddling ways. Alexandre Trudeau's documentary "Refuge" is also being screened at this year's festival. It gives viewers an inside look in into the horrific situation in Darfur. Those of you interested to know more about John F. Kennedy can check out the documentary entitled "In Search Of Kennedy," featuring interviews with members of the Kennedy family and the likes of Bill Clinton and Alec Baldwin. For more information on these screenings and others, you can call (514) 848-3883 or visit the festival's website at www.ffm-montreal.org

Photos by Stephan Legare (WFF)

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