Page Eight – September 18

Last TIFF film for this year and the closing gala film. I saw it at noon on Sunday and both the Director David Hare and the leading actor, Bill Nighy showed up to introduce the film and do a Q and A afterwards. Quite a thrill. I am a huge Bill Nighy fan and he did not disappoint. This movie was shot in five weeks for three million dollars. Compare this to Moneyball at $47 million. The comparison? There is no comparison. Page Eight was the second best film I saw this year. Nighy plays an MI5 agent at the end of his career who is confronted with a combined intelligence/political dilemma that will certainly destroy his career if not his life. In a classic John LeCarre style the story unwinds in an intricate and enjoyable ride. This movie was made for the BBC and has already been broadcast in the UK. It deserves a theatrical release here so you can all see it. The cast includes Rachel Weisz, and Michael Gambon who are fantastic in their supporting roles. In fact the entire cast is fantastic led by Nighy who reminds me of a healthy Keith Richards. If you are trying to picture him think of Davey Jones in Pirates of the Caribbean and Slartibartfast in A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. He has been in many other films in small and supporting roles but this is a breakout for him. David Hare promises at least one sequel and the rumour is that the BBC wants a trilogy based on this character. My mouth is watering for the next film. The script – also written by David Hare – is witty and tight. I liked some of the wonderful puns that were slipped in here and there and the overall intelligence of the whole film. Highly recommended.

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