After toiling thanklessly for the past fifteen years in the cinematic margins, writer-director Paul Schrader has produced a monumental work of passion, grace, and anger in the form of First Reformed.
There’s no way to prepare for it–not really–but that’s always what makes TIFF so much fun if you ask me. Before the festival started I saw nine films, I went to two gift lounges, and I had two pre-interviews with filmmakers. Then the real fun started on September 8, with a couple of days filled with interviews and events.
Each year, during the Toronto International Film Festival, I am fortunate to meet a lot of actors, directors, producers, writers, and other talent from film, and television. This year at TIFF 2016, I had the fortune of working with Toronto photographer Rick McGinnis to capture some of that talent in a series of special portrait sessions.
A strange thing happened during the mid-course of cinema history. It used to be that if you were to make a movie that featured Jesus Christ as a character the film was elevated to realm of classic just for that reason alone (The Robe, King of Kings, The Bible, The Ten Commandments) – but then, it seemed that, as in other genres like the western, those filmmakers with the guts and gumption to try tackling Christ have done so in a decidedly revisionist manner, and have had to weather fierce storms of controversy that were damn near indefensible. But what Mel Gibson has done with The Passion of The Christ could accurately be described as brilliant.