TIFF Update - Day 7: Ladder to Damascus, Kill Your Darlings, Walesa. Man of Hope, and Jodorowsky's Dune
Image: Clay Enos / Sony Pictures Classics
Dane DeHaan and Daniel Radcliffe in Kill Your Darlings

Editor's Note: We can't all make it to the Toronto International Film Festival (which is too bad, since it's where some of the best films of the next year will be shown). But CT has the next best thing: daily updates during the Festival from our critic Ken Morefield. Stay tuned for the next week for capsule reviews and reflections on some of the world's most important movies.

Ladder to Damascus, directed by Mohamad Malas
Kill Your Darlings, directed by John Krokidas
Walesa. Man of Hope, directed by Andrzej Wajda
Jodorowsky's Dune, directed by Frank Pavich

I was a bit of a cinematic Agrippa on Wednesday, saying to a series of films, "almost thou persuadest me." But not quite.

Traveling to TIFF each year usually means I am not in the United States on the anniversary of 9/11. I am happy to have the global perspective that the festival provides while still being among a community of artists and people who lament the tragic loss of human life in any form.

So given recent political events, it seemed fitting to screen Ladder to Damascus, a film from the man the TIFF catalog calls "Syrian cinema's first auteur." The film begins with a camera confessional, as the protagonist laments living in a country that "demands everything" of him yet gives nothing. It's a major achievement that the film was made at all, and that achievement alone engenders tremendous respect. As the film unfolds, it becomes yet another tale of a boy infatuated with a girl played out against a historical backdrop that most want to be foregrounded. Malas can't really be blamed for how difficult it is to frame the backdrop of Syria for under-informed Western viewers, but the film ends up (by necessity ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Subscribe to CT and get one year free.
Read These Next
Current IssueEvangelism, Iranian Style
Evangelism, Iranian Style
Amid persecution and a travel ban, Iran’s youth want community and transformation from within.
RecommendedWhy We Need Wonder Woman
Why We Need Wonder Woman
Even when it falters, the new female-led film brings freshness to the superhero flick.
TrendingKay Warren: 'We Were in Marital Hell'
Kay Warren: 'We Were in Marital Hell'
Through God's work in our lives, we've beaten the odds that divorce would be the outcome of our ill-advised union.
Editor's PickThe Vacuum Christian Indifference Creates
The Vacuum Christian Indifference Creates
The crisis we face when the church is silent on social justice.
Christianity Today
TIFF Update - Day 7: Ladder to Damascus, Kill Your ...
hide thisAccess The Archives

In the Archives

September 2013

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.