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TIFF: Day 7 lookahead

cooking-with-stella-392.jpg An honest nanny (Shriya Saran) threatens the security of duplicitous cook Stella when the two work for a Canadian diplomat posted to New Dehli in Dilip Mehta's Cooking with Stella. (Mongrel Media)

Clooney, Damon, Soderbergh et al. have long since left town. If it’s star power you’re after, I regret to inform you that we’re into the back half of TIFF ’09, and the wattage has dimmed considerably.

Still, this is shaping up as one of the strongest festivals in years, and there are many tasty offerings left on the table. Here’s a sampling of them, all premiering today.

Dilip Mehta’s Cooking with Stella is probably the highest-profile Canuck entry this year; the comedy gets the gala treatment at Roy Thomson Hall. Lisa Ray plays a Canadian diplomat who gets transferred to New Delhi along with her hubbie, played by Don McKellar. Seemas Biswas is the titular Stella, the chief housekeeper of the residence, who has been indulging in some slightly nefarious work practices before the couple’s arrival. As I wrote on Day One, co-star Ray recently revealed that she’s battling a rare form of blood cancer, so it promises to be an emotional screening for many reasons. McKellar is always wry and fun to watch; click here to read the 2005 diary he wrote for this site about his trip to that year’s Bangkok film fest.

Actor Samantha Morton (Minority Report, In America, Control) makes her directorial debut with The Unloved, a gritty drama about an 11-year-old girl heading into the care of social services. Inspired by Morton’s own hardscrabble childhood, the film is generating comparisons to Ken Loach, director of the stellar working-class dramas Raining Stones and My Name is Joe.

Werner Herzog’s second entry at this year’s fest is My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done, and it premieres here just one night after his other new film, Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans. My Son stars Michael Shannon – who stole the show in Revolutionary Road – as another trademark Herzog obsessive, a guy with serious mother issues.

-- Greig Dymond

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About the blog

The 2009 Toronto International Film Festival runs Sept. 10-19. Over the course of the festival, CBCNews.ca is keeping a blog, which houses all manner of TIFF-related intelligence, from quirky movie events to celebrity sightings to how the annual event transforms the city of Toronto.

Recent Posts

Mio Adilman’s Unlocked
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
TIFF: Day 7 lookahead
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Signs of the times at this year's TIFF
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Multi-layered Collapse
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
TIFF: Day 6 lookahead
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
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World »

Mud-slinging and Mexican flags define decade-long battle over Trump's Scottish golf course
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Analysis 'Confrontational, angry' inaugural address leaves no doubt about which side Trump's on video
It was classic Donald Trump — a hard-hitting campaign-style inauguration speech by the new president of the United States that used "America first" populist rhetoric, attacked Washington insiders and decried the state of the country.
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Canada »

Liberal peacekeeping decision paused because of uncertainty around Trump video audio
The Trudeau government postponed the delivery of its long-anticipated peacekeeping plan last month principally because it needed a better read on what the Trump administration expects of Canada in terms of international defence and security, sources tell CBC News.
Solidarity sisters! Why Canadians are joining the Women's March on Washington video
Canadian women are donning their "pussyhats" and heading south in buses and cars to take part in the Women's March on Washington on Saturday, which is expected to draw about 200,000 protesters who disavow the policies and presidency of Donald Trump.
Analysis Like Trump, Kevin O'Leary only needs voters to take him seriously: Aaron Wherry video
Perhaps all prime ministers end up becoming television characters, but Kevin O'Leary is the first TV character to run for prime minister. Now, the question is how serious O'Leary should be taken as a contender for high office.
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Politics »

Trump delights supporters, alarms trading partners with inaugural speech: Chris Hall
U.S. President Donald Trump's inaugural speech was tonic for the crowd that flooded Washington from those blue-collar, rust-belt states that turned on the Democrats last year when Trump offered them the brash guarantee of better days ahead.
Liberal peacekeeping decision paused because of uncertainty around Trump video audio
The Trudeau government postponed the delivery of its long-anticipated peacekeeping plan last month principally because it needed a better read on what the Trump administration expects of Canada in terms of international defence and security, sources tell CBC News.
Analysis Like Trump, Kevin O'Leary only needs voters to take him seriously: Aaron Wherry video
Perhaps all prime ministers end up becoming television characters, but Kevin O'Leary is the first TV character to run for prime minister. Now, the question is how serious O'Leary should be taken as a contender for high office.
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Health »

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Arts & Entertainment»

Jackie Evancho, Mormon Tabernacle Choir perform at inauguration, but A-listers gather at unofficial events
Teen singer Jackie Evancho delivered a soft-voiced rendition of the U.S. national anthem at Donald Trump's swearing-in ceremony on Friday, but the inauguration performances have exposed the obvious divisions in the country following Trump's election, with star-power turning up for unofficial, alternate programming, from the Peace Ball to protests in New York to the Women's March on Washington.
A Dog's Purpose Hollywood premiere, Canadian preview screenings cancelled
The Hollywood premiere of A Dog's Purpose has been cancelled amid growing concern and calls to boycott the shot-in-Canada film, following the release of a video — purportedly from the movie set — showing a distressed German shepherd being forced into turbulent water.
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Technology & Science »

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Trump makes cyberwarfare an official priority for new White House
The new administration announced an official position on cyberwarfare Friday, pledging to make the development of "defensive and offensive cyber capabilities" a priority in the fight against terror and the protection of American secrets.
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Money »

New 'There isn't a best card out there': How to choose a credit card that works for you
Credit cards with a lower interest rate may be more worthwhile than rewards cards for some people.
E-book publishers and Apple reach new deal with Competition Bureau over pricing
Three major book publishers have signed an agreement with Canadian competition authorities that will permit retailers to sell those publishers' e-books at a discount — something they couldn't do before.
Trudeau holds call with premiers to reassure them over Canada-U.S. relationship
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke with his provincial and territorial counterparts today in an effort to reassure them about Canada's economic and security relationship with the United States.
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Consumer Life »

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Sports »

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Humphries narrowly misses bobsled gold in St. Moritz
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