The 11 Must-See Movies at Toronto Film Festival 2016

New flicks from Damien Chazelle, Tom Ford, Eleanor Coppola, Werner Herzog, and more top our short list this year.

Courtesy TIFF
OF 12

If the summer’s shriveled crop of would-be blockbusters has you down, take heart: a tsunami of artistic ambition, stellar casts, and bravura filmmaking is on the horizon. After starting out in Italy at the Venice Film Festival (August 31 – September 9), that monster wave lands this weekend on North American shores: It’s time once again for 2016’s Toronto International Film Festival to ring in the mad scramble of awards season.

Yes, both Venice and Telluride (September 2 – 5) have stolen some of Toronto’s thunder of late: last year’s Best Picture Spotlight played both before hitting TIFF. But with 296 feature films, Toronto remains unmatched for the breadth and depth of films on offer. More importantly, it’s accessible to those without a direct line to Brad Pitt’s publicist. You may need a yacht for both Cannes and Venice, and mountain climbing experience just to survive Telluride or Sundance; but at Toronto, a passport, a passion for film, and a judicious look at the catalogue will get you far, indeed. If you find yourself out and “aboot” in Canada’s queen city, here are a few recommendations to get started.