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Solondz, Audiard and Almodovar Among TiFF’s Special Presentations

Sony Pictures Classics will showcasing Broken Embraces, An Education and one of the best pictures of the year in A Prophet to North American audiences, while TIFF’s North American premiere of Todd Solondz’s latest means that Life During Wartime will be in Venice as well.

Sony Pictures Classics will showcasing Broken Embraces, An Education and one of the best pictures of the year in A Prophet to North American audiences, while TIFF’s North American premiere of Todd Solondz’s latest means that Life During Wartime will be in Venice as well. Among the eight titles added to the Special Presentations section, we find four world preems from: Renato De Maria (The Front Line), Stephen Poliakoff (Glorious 39), Yoichi Sai (Kamui) and Juan Jose Campanella’s The Secret of Their Eyes. Here are the selections:

Broken Embraces
Pedro Almodovar, Spain North American Premiere
Harry Caine, a blind writer, reaches a point when he has to heal his wounds from 14 years ago, when he was still known by his real name, Mateo Blanco, and directing his last movie. As the past is revisited, a story of “amour fou” unfolds, dominated by fatality, jealousy, the abuse of power, treachery and a guilt complex.

An Education
Lone Scherfig, United Kingdom Canadian Premiere
A coming-of-age story about a teenaged girl in 1960s suburban London and how her life changes with the arrival of a playboy nearly twice her age. Torn between her parents’ dream of going to Oxford University and a more tempting kind of life, she must decide if the new path is one that will trap her or set her free.

The Front Line
Renato De Maria, Italy World Premiere
Set during a turbulent period in 1970-80s Italy, the plot centres on passionate couple Sergio and Susanna, who have been living as fugitives. Pursuing an uncompromising cause as members of the notorious Prima Linea, they have become increasingly alienated from the real world. Their luck finally runs out when Susanna is captured and thrown in jail. Putting his life on the line, Sergio embarks on a radical plan.

Glorious 39
Stephen Poliakoff, United Kingdom World Premiere
This tense conspiracy thriller set on the eve of World War II and based on disturbing real events, focuses on a young woman who stumbles across evidence of a sinister Nazi appeasement plot. As her close friends begin to die in suspicious circumstances, she finds her own life in danger from an increasingly menacing and powerful enemy.

Kamui
Yoichi Sai, Japan World Premiere
A crowd pleasing, sweeping epic brilliantly directed by one of Japan’s finest auteurs, Kamui is the adventurous story of a fugitive ninja played by superstar Kenichi Matsuyama.

Life During Wartime
Todd Solondz, USA North American Premiere
Happiness director Todd Solondz returns with another unsettling dark comedy about sexual obsession between friends, family and lovers struggling to find love, forgiveness and meaning in a war-torn world. Allison Janney and Ciaran Hinds star. (See Pic)

A Prophet
Jacques Audiard, France North American Premiere
A young Arab man, Malik, is sent to a French prison where he is cornered by the leader of the ruling Corsican gang. He is given a number of “missions” to carry out, toughening him up and gaining the gang leader’s confidence in the process. But Malik is brave and a fast learner, daring to secretly develop his own plans.

The Secret of Their Eyes Juan Jose Campanella, Argentina/Spain International Premiere
Benjamin Chaparro, a secretary of a court in Buenos Aires, is about to retire and decides to write a novel based on a case that deeply affected him thirty years ago. Chaparro’s tale crosses Argentina’s turbulent years during the 1970s, when nothing was necessarily what it seemed to be.

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Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at IONCINEMA.com, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson’s "This Teacher" (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022, he was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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