Tokyo International Film Festival

October 7, 2008 at 9:44 am Leave a comment

The 21st Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF) runs this year from October 18 to the 26th, with a greener-than-Kermit theme. Not only is the traditional red carpet being replaced by a green carpet made from recycled bottles (don’t ask me how), an all-around emphasis on the environment will be highlighted in the film selection, according to Japan Today.

Films that deal with ecology, co-existence between man and nature, and preservation of the earth’s environment will be competing for a brand new award, the Toyota Earth Grand Prix.

Opening night of the festival kicks off with John Woo’s $80 million historical Chinese war epic Red Cliff, starring Tony Leung. Red Cliff is the most expensive Asian movie ever made, and it broke box office records in China when it opened there this July. A sequel is already set for release in January 2009.

Actor Tony Leung has great range. He broke my heart in the subtle romantic film In the Mood For Love at the Palm Springs International Film Festival a few years ago, but he’s equally at home in the thrilling Infernal Affairs trilogy, which was the basis for the Academy Award-winning Leonardo DiCaprio film The Departed.

Director John Woo is best known Stateside for the silly action flick Face/Off starring John Travolta and Nicolas Cage.

TIFF’s closing night will end with a screening of WALL-E, about the little trash compactor who could. It was one of my faves this year, though I thought the first half of the movie was much stronger than the second half.

Altogether, 300 films from 73 countries will be shown at the fest.

Sarah S.

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