LIVE: TIFF set to announce People's Choice Award for 2017 festival | Toronto Star

 thestar.com  9/17/2017 3:52:07 PM 

From Angelina Jolie appearing with the kids to George Clooney talking twins to Glenn Close having a gas, this year's Toronto International Film Festival delivered some memorable moments both inside and outside the cinema.

But what is in the cinema is what the annual festival is all about. The Shape of Water, Molly’s Game, Lady Bird and Call Me By Your Name have generated the most buzz for the Grolsch People's Choice Award.

Considered by some to be an indicator of films that will make it the Academy Awards, previous winners of the award include La La Land, Room, The Imitation Game, 12 Years a Slave and Slumdog Millionaire.

The TIFF ceremony announcing all awards kicks off at 12:30 p.m.

Here are some standout films from the festival, as compiled by the Canadian Press:

Bryan Cranston signs autographs as he attends a premiere for "The Upside" on day 2 of the Toronto International Film Festival on Sept. 8, 2017.
Bryan Cranston signs autographs as he attends a premiere for "The Upside" on day 2 of the Toronto International Film Festival on Sept. 8, 2017.  (Chris Pizzello / Invision/AP)  

Call Me By Your Name: At once a sizzling summer love story and a poetic capsule of sexual repression, this coming-of-age tale unfolds in the Italian countryside and captures all of the joy, pain and confusion of growing into manhood. During a getaway to his parents' villa, 17-year-old Elio (Timothee Chalamet) finds himself infatuated with an older student (Armie Hammer) who is working for his father. The two form a friendship built on their shared Jewish heritage, but there's a simmering tension between them that director Luca Guadagnino milks until even the audience feels like its suffocating in their attraction. But it's a monologue late in the film that puts their connection into perspective and will leave many viewers emotionally gutted.

The Disaster Artist: This comedy about the making of eccentric filmmaker Tommy Wiseau's notoriously terrible cult classic The Room was a hot ticket, with rush audiences lined up for hours. Director James Franco delivers an uncanny performance as Wiseau, whose swollen ego and lack of self-awareness make for a tyrannical mix on set. Brother Dave Franco also shines as level-headed actor/Wiseau muse Greg Sestero, whose memoir inspired this star-packed tribute. The film is flat-out fun and provokes just as many laughs as "The Room" did — only in this case, it's intentional.

Lady Bird: There's no shortage of movies about quirky, rebellious teens but writer-director Greta Gerwig crafts a vibrant, authentic take on the pangs of youth with Lady Bird. Saoirse Ronan is electric and relatable as a Sacramento teen who insists she be called Lady Bird and is fixated on escaping to New York for college. She's bold and outlandish, but deeply insecure about money and social status, while her deftly drawn friends never feel like cardboard heroes or villains. But the heart of the film is Lady Bird's intense relationship with her stalwart but devoted mother, played by a riveting Laurie Metcalf. Rarely are mother-daughter dynamics seen with such complexity and painful honesty.

Mudbound: Heartbreak abounds in this devastating Second World War epic about the intersecting lives of two families — one white, one black — sharing farmland in the 1940s Mississippi Delta. An unlikely bond forms between war veterans Jamie McAllan (Garrett Hedlund) and Ronsel Jackson (Jason Mitchell) as they face starkly different realities upon returning to the homestead and a world ravaged by the ills of poverty, racism and violence.

The Shape of Water: Guillermo del Toro ("Pan's Labyrinth") creates a new fantastical world in this genre mashup featuring some of cinema's highest talents. Sally Hawkins plays a mute janitor who convinces her colleague (Octavia Spencer) to help smuggle a secret classified experiment — an amphibious sea creature — out of the government lab where they work. That angers the testy agent (Michael Shannon), who is determined to retrieve the creature. One part monster movie, another part Hollywood love story, del Toro reaches back to the classics for inspiration and convincingly masks some of the Toronto area's nooks and crannies with a touch of 1960s flair.

MORE ON THESTAR.COM:

High ideals met harsh reality at TIFF 2017: Howell

Critical favourite Lady Bird snags three deals at TIFF

Long Time Running a funny, uplifting look at the Hip’s last tour: review

Capsule reviews from the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival

With files from Tara Deschamps and the Canadian Press

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