The Best Films From The 2021 Toronto International Film Festival

The 2021 Toronto International Film Festival is likely one of the most well-known festivals on the planet. And, as with yearly, it constantly contains a number of extremely anticipated motion pictures which can be headed to theaters later this yr and smaller content material from across the globe — listed here are the very best movies to premiere on the competition in 2021. 

TIFF has launched various movies, lots of which have gone on to win recognition on the Oscars and different notable awards ceremonies. In its forty sixth yr, the movie competition started on September 9 and ran via September 18. It featured a plethora of high-profile movies like Dear Evan Hansen, Dune, and The Starling to worldwide fare like To Kill the BeastSaloum, and Huda’s Salon. With the world nonetheless within the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic, TIFF supplied viewers and press alike the chance to see movies in theater venues and from the consolation of their very own properties. 

Associated: What 2021’s Movie Release Slate Looks Like Now

With almost 200 movies enjoying on the famend movie competition, it’s troublesome to slender down simply which of them are value searching for after they’re lastly launched. Every movie had one thing to supply — be it good writing, great performances by the movie’s actors, or emotional depth. Narrowing it right down to just some, listed here are the very best movies from this yr’s Toronto Worldwide Movie Competition (with a disclaimer that this author didn’t see each single one which performed), from poignant dramas like Petite Maman to The Electrical Lifetime of Louis Wain, a stunning biopic concerning the titular illustrator starring Benedict Cumberbatch. 

Petite Maman 

Céline Sciama’s follow-up to Portrait of Woman on Hearth, Petite Maman “paints a deeply considerate and compassionate story of grief and love that resonates emotionally” and consists of sturdy central performances by Joséphine Sanz and real-life sister Gabrielle Sanz. Read Screen Rant’s full review.


The movie is a biographical drama concerning the poet Siegfried Sassoon, so it’s apt that director-writer Terrence Davies suffused the story with a way of tender poetry. The movie sees Sassoon within the years following World Battle I, a conflict he spoke up towards after seeing its atrocities first-hand, and his private life, together with the affairs he had with males. Davies intersperses these components of his life with scenes which can be set many years later (with an older Sassoon performed by Physician Who’s Peter Capaldi). Davies masterfully weaves between time durations as Benediction explores remorse, the pains of morality, the unhappiness of dropping friendships and lovers to spite, and the loneliness it finally begets.

Mothering Sunday 

mothering sunday review tiff

“Directed by Eva Husson from a screenplay by Alice Birch, Mothering Sunday (based mostly on the novel by Graham Swift) leans into the heaviness of grief within the years after World Battle I. The movie is tender and considerate in its exploration of loss, lingering within the particulars and reminiscences shaping life, virtually reverent in its strategy.” Read Screen Rant’s full review.

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The Mad Ladies’s Ball 

Co-written, directed, and starring Mélanie Laurent, The Mad Ladies’s Ball explores the ladies who’re sufferers at Salpêtrière, a nineteenth century psychological establishment that handled girls horribly throughout the confines of its partitions. The movie’s protagonist, Eugénie (Lou de Laâge), is wrongfully despatched there after her father discovers she will see and converse to spirits, one thing that can undermine the repute of the household. The movie is fascinating because it hinges on its characters’ journeys, whereas additionally pointing to their lack of company as their our bodies and minds are abused and made “mad” for public consumption (the main physician, Charcot (Grégoire Bonnet) makes use of the sufferers for demonstrations). The enhancing, the costumes, and the performances all add layers to this emotionally devastating, tragic movie. 


violet review 2021

Written and directed by Justine Bateman, Violet is elevated by a shocking efficiency by Olivia Munn, successfully showcasing the challenges of dwelling in a single’s head and the way hindering it may be in a novel and memorable movie. Read Screen Rant’s full review.

Costa Brava, Lebanon

The financial scenario in Lebanon has been devastating for some time now, with the trash disaster being yet one more dire scenario the nation’s folks should unfairly endure. In Costa Brava, Lebanon, a household — Walid (Saleh Bakri), his spouse Soraya (Nadine Labaki), a former singer, their two daughters, and Walid’s mom — has left town of Beirut behind for the scenic mountains, exhausted from preventing and protesting when nothing adjustments, and wanting a reprieve from the heartbreak. A brand new landfill follows to interrupt up their avoidance of the issues which have bled into their day by day lives. Helmed by Mounia Akl, who confidently directs her function debut from a screenplay by her and Clara Roquet, the movie explores Walid and Soraya’s differing views on the matter of preventing for town that broke their hearts, hiding from the ache of their previous, and the divide that it’s creating inside their household. The movie is nuanced, imbued with depth and elevated by emotional performances from Bakri and Labaki. 

The Electrical Lifetime of Louis Wain 

The movie, directed by Will Sharpe from a screenplay by him and Simon Stephenson, examines the eccentric illustrator all through his private {and professional} profession in a poignant, beautiful story that’s as memorable as it’s uneven. The Electrical Lifetime of Louis Wain is whimsical, fascinating, and top-of-the-line biopics out this yr. Read Screen Rant’s full review.

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I’m Your Man 

I'm Your Man Review

Director Maria Schrader, working from a screenplay she co-wrote alongside Jan Schomburg, unpacks human relationships with expertise in a genuinely considerate method. Bolstered by improbable performances by Maren Eggert and Dan Stevens, who performs an enthralling robotic boyfriend, I’m Your Man is likely one of the most beautiful, articulate movies concerning the development of expertise and its relationship with people. The movie explores the way it can hinder interpersonal relationships, how people relate to one another, and the disconnect it creates regardless of craving for affection and closeness. It additionally contends with loneliness, whereas additionally subverting expectations of its romcom-esque setup. Read Screen Rant’s full review.

Subsequent: Netflix: Every Movie and TV Show Releasing In September 2021

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About The Creator | The Finest Movies From The 2021 Toronto Worldwide Movie Competition

Huynh Nguyen

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