The Festival ends today and I am movied out for a week or so at least. I managed to get to 18 films although there will a couple more posts here from delegates I sent to two other movies. The best of which is Camion – a very nice Quebec film that deserves attention. I did not get to many of the big movies coming out this fall including The Master, Seven Psychopaths and A Late Quartet and really several others but TIFF really messed with the tickets sales to members this year specifically around the Day Pass which has been one of the best deals going for many many years but was totally nerfed this year.
Highlights were the Q and A’s that were very good for the most part and available at almost all the films right up until the final weekend. This was much appreciated by the fans. The buzz in line however was much more muted than previous years. The film selection was not as exciting I think although the overall quality was high. Usual opening line for conversation in line is “So, what’s been your best movie so far?” There were many more umms and ahhs to that one although everyone was able to come up with something they really liked. There was just no overwhelming enthusiasm as in previous years. My most interesting conversation was with two fellow members while waiting for Dangerous Liaisons. A volunteer came by and asked if we knew about membership and were we interested. Turned out we were all members and all had the same complaints. We were upset at how badly treated we were with our Day Passes which got us next to nothing despite the cost, and we were upset at how few films were scheduled for the mornings which meant you really had to go to movies over dinner or in the evening if you wanted to squeeze 3 films in. This has never been a problem in the past. Finally we all complained at the apparent random decision to name some films “premium” which meant they were not available for the already nerfed day pass and also cost twice as much for tickets if you wanted to buy individual tickets. Extremely annoying. The poor woman trying to sell memberships pointed out that we all had access to the members lounge – known as the Blue Room (except of course during the Festival). We again all had the same reaction: Members join because we like going to movies and having access to tickets not because we want to sit around private lounge downtown all year long. TIFF is new to the membership game and have not really figured it out clearly. I will be writing to them as will many others I suspect with the hope that it will get better next year.
Beyond that however, I have to admit the films were good, I had a good time and as usual I am a bit sorry that its over for another year. I will definitely be back in 2013.