Last year I started to go through some of the common terms that you may see on the TIFF site in the summaries for the films as a way to help others learn from my past mistakes. I know one of the festivals former talented trained corporate communicators, an entertaining young man who in addition to his Masters in English took additional courses in learning how to use his words to seduce on behalf of The Man. This guy has the making of an old-tymey raconteur, and as such I know better than most that you can’t go by the summary no matter how good they make it sound. A great summary for a less than awesome film brings to mind the beautiful menu at the restaurant that gave me campylobacter jejuni. Once you’ve been fooled you have to just sit there and take it.
Today’s reading lesson:
Coming-of-age – These movies can go either way. You really need to look at the other details in the summary to find out if this is just another self-indulgent tale composed by someone trying to work out their adolescent issues with their parents/ex-lust object/high school bully/confused sexuality or is this something that is going to speak to you on a deeper level because the acting, story telling and set pieces come together to to transcend the genre. I know that if my cynical self were to read ‘the coming-of-age story of a young boy in a mining town who just wants to dance’ I would probably have some serious doubts, and end up missing out on Billy Elliot. For these films I can only suggest that you look at the other attributes to help make the decision. If I were to see that the coming-of-age story hailed from somewhere outside of the continental United States and was selected by Jane Schoettle then I would highlight that baby in the drop off selection book faster than you could say Persepolis.