Toronto Film Festival 2009: Contemporary World Cinema & Visions

"Hiroshima", de Pablo Stoll


Toronto – The 34th Toronto International Film Festival adds 11 films to its Contemporary World Cinema (CWC) schedule and seven films to its Visions programme. CWC provides audiences with an annual snapshot of trends in global cinema. Works presented under the Visions banner are films from around the world by filmmakers who push the boundaries and challenge our notions of mainstream cinema.


Beyond the Circle Golam Rabbany Biplob, Bangladesh

World Premiere

In this political fable from Bangladesh’s leading filmmaker, a simple village musician gets swept up in the market economy of big city Dhaka.

Blessed Ana Kokkinos, Australia

International Premiere

During the course of one day and night, seven children wander the streets in an urban odyssey. Blessed is a film about mothers and children, about love and beauty, about being lost and finding your way home.

Down for Life Alan Jacobs, USA

World Premiere

Based on a New York Times article, this film depicts a single, fateful day in the life of a 15-year-old Latina gang leader. Leaving the gang, she discovers, is more difficult than joining. Shot in South-Central Los Angeles, the film stars local youths in the lead roles.

Giulia Doesn’t Date at Night Giuseppe Piccioni, Italy

International Premiere

A young novelist is intrigued by his daughter’s swimming instructor. When he asks her out, he learns that she doesn’t date at night and discovers that she is serving a sentence for a crime of passion. Tentatively they start a relationship that leads both of them in unforeseen directions.

Heiran Shalizeh Arefpour, Iran

World Premiere

A young Iranian girl falls in love with an immigrant student from Afghanistan, causing her family to react with anger.

The House of Branching Love Mika Kaurismäki, Finland

International Premiere

Family therapist Juhani and business trainer Taula decide to divorce in a civilized manner. Despite these good intentions, things turn ugly and the Pandora’s Box of their marriage flies open, releasing plagues of love and hate.

Rabia Sebastián Cordero, Spain/Colombia

World Premiere

Rabia is a romantic thriller about a construction worker on the run for killing his foreman who hides in the mansion where his girlfriend works as a housekeeper.

Sawasdee Bangkok Wisit Sasanatieng, Aditya Assarat, Kongdej Jaturanrasmee and Pen-ek Ratanaruang, Thailand

World Premiere

Directed by four distinctly talented Thai directors, this collection of tales about Bangkok is less a love letter than a funny, touching and surprising expression of the city’s reality.

Shameless Jan Hrebejk, Czech Republic

International Premiere

This film, freely inspired by stories form Michal Viewegh’s bestseller, Tales of Marriage and Sex, is a wry comedy about sex and marriage and a story about losing and finding love.

Slovenian Girl Damjan Kozole Slovenia/Germany/Serbia/Croatia

North American Premiere

A young university student solicits sex clients through newspaper ads, involving her in a hellish adventure.

Tanner Hall Francesca Gregorini and Tatiana von Furstenberg, USA

World Premiere

Tanner Hall a folkloric look into the private world of an all-girls boarding school. In a cozy but run-down New England town, the knot of adolescence is unravelled through the coming-of-age stories of four teenaged girls.


Between Two Worlds Vimukthi Jayasundara, Sri Lanka

North American Premiere

Rajith, a young man, flees the city in which he lives and where violent confrontations are common. He goes to a village in a valley where the inhabitants seem to be still strongly influenced by an old legend.

Gaia Jason Lehel, USA

World Premiere

A group of Native Americans discover a young woman, left for dead, in the Arizona desert and take her to their reservation. Through her relationship with American Natives she manages to re-connect with her own innocence, but is forced to make a choice between being reborn out of the chaos of her past and dying in the grips of her darkness.

Hiroshima Pablo Stoll, Uruguay `

World Premiere

Juan sings in a rock band, but he doesn’t talk much. He also works at a bakery during the night and sleeps most of the day. This is the story of one of his days and what happens when he wakes up. Hiroshima is a silent musical, based on real facts.

I Am Love Luca Guadagnino, Italy

International Premiere

Academy Award®-winner Tilda Swinton stars in this drama about the devastating effects of a forbidden passion between a woman who belongs to a rich northern-Italian family and her son’s best friend, a cook.

Lebanon Samuel Maoz, Israel

North American Premiere

Set in June 1982 during the Israel-Lebanon War, the film follows a young and heroic tank crew that finds itself in a situation that cannot be contained. The crew copes with impossible conflicts, losing its way amid the chaos of war.

To the Sea Pedro González-Rubio, Mexico

World Premiere

Before their inevitable farewell, a young Mexican man and his half Italian son, Natan, embark on an epic journey to the second-largest coral reef on the planet.

Trash Humpers Harmony Korine, USA/United Kingdom

World Premiere

Harmony Korine returns to Gummo territory in this handheld video of a loser-gang cult-freak collective who do antisocial things in a non-narrative way, except for the song-and-dance numbers.

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