TIFF 2014: Masters, Midnight Madness, and Vanguard Unveiled


One of my favourite things about the Toronto International Film Festival is the diversity.

TIFF announced a relatively large chunk of its line-up last Tuesday which featured some early award-season frontrunners and a slew of high-profile talent. Now, a week later, TIFF heads in a completely different direction with its Masters, Midnight Madness, and Vanguard programmes. This announcement is for all the die-hard horror fanboys and edge-of-your-seat thrill seekers out there! That said, we haven’t forgotten the art-house hunters and idol chasers.

As always, I’ve provided synopses and trailers/images for the flicks that caught my attention. You can check out the full list of films announced today by clicking the corresponding programme title: MastersMidnight MadnessVanguard. If you’re interested in seeing our TIFF post from last week, simply click here! Finally, for the full list of films screening at this year’s festivities, click here!

The remainder of TIFF’s 2014 lineup will be released in the coming weeks and will feature films from such programmes as Discovery, Mavericks, and Wavelengths…to name a few. There is still a ton of films to be revealed and I’ll be posting accordingly so keep it locked here at The CInema Monster!


Over Your Dead Body: Takashi Miike, Japan

A theatre troupe rehearsing a classic play of murder, betrayal and phantasmagorical vengeance find life bloodily imitating art backstage, in this wild cinematic detour from madly prolific Japanese auteur Takashi Miike (13 Assassins).


The Face of an Angel: Michael Winterbottom, United Kingdom

Kate Beckinsale and Daniel Brühl (Rush, Inglourious Basterds) star in this fictionalized version of the notorious Amanda Knox murder case from ever-adventurous director Michael Winterbottom (The Trip, 24 Hour Party People, The Trip to Italy).


Adieu Au Langage 3D (Goodbye to Language 3D) Jean-Luc Godard, France

Winner of the Jury Prize at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, the new film by Jean-Luc Godard is a visually sumptuous and richly complex meditation on history and eternity, being and nothingness, desire and death.


[REC] 4: Apocalypse: Juame Balaguero, Spain

Confined to a high-security quarantine facility in the bowels of an ocean liner, a ragtag group of survivors fights for their lives against infected zombie hordes, in the long-awaited climax to the spectacularly popular Spanish horror franchise.

Big Game: Jalmari Helander, Finland/Germany/United Kingdom

Trapped in the wilderness after Air Force One is forced down by a terrorist attacked, the President of the United States (Samuel L. Jackson) must rely on the survival skills of a 13-year-old woodsman, in this thriller co-starring Ray Stevenson, Jim Broadbent and Felicity Huffman.


The Guest: Adam Wingard, USA

Writer-director duo Simon Barrett and Adam Wingard (A Horrible Way to Die, You’re Next) serve up a slick, eighties-style action thriller with this story of a mysterious and devastatingly charming visitor (Downton Abbey’s Dan Stevens) who arrives at the home of a bereaved family claiming to be the best friend of their dead son.

Tusk: Kevin Smith, USA

Kevin Smith brings his comedic chops to a disturbing new milieu in this Canuck-baiting chiller about a popular podcast host who descends into straight-up madness when he heads north of the 49th parallel.


A BIG thank you to TIFF for providing a majority of the content in this post.

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Aspiring writer who absolutely adores film and television. thecinemamonster.com

Posted on July 29, 2014, in TIFF and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 21 Comments.

  1. Wow, there are some great looking films there! Its always nice to see Takashi Miike make something crazy

  2. Cool line-up. The Guest, OYDB and Face of an Angel seem the most interesting. I didn’t know Godard was still alive and filming?!

  3. Looks like a great selection.

  4. I’m looking forward to reading your reviews. Sounds great :)

  5. Love that synopsis for Over Your Dead Body. I had to look up the word Phantasmagorical, sounds awesome! ;)

  6. These are some nice looking films, I’m pretty interested in The Guest, Tusk and Big Game of course. I would give all these movies a shot.

  7. What a great line up, especially REC 4 :)

  8. So far my must sees from aready announced titles are Leviathan, Tusk, Ned Rifle, and Foxcatcher. Though there are a lot of others that close as well (e.g. The Face of an Angel, etc). Hoping Xavier Dolan’s Mommy plays the festival as well.

    • I still need to do a ton of research and such to conjure my final must-watch list, but Foxcatcher and Tusk appear to be festival-musts. I have a lot of films I hope they announce in the coming weeks, so fingers crossed!

  9. Takashi Mike always puts out some strange, violent and often unnerving films. This one looks no different :)

  10. I just. . . don’t even know what to think about Tusk yet. I think right now I’ll keep my mouth shut and wait to watch it, b/c it could be the worst thing I’ve ever seen or the best thing Kevin Smith will ever do. Lol. I don’t see any middle ground with that one.

    As for the rest — I’m all ears (and eyes). Except for maybe the Godard film. That just looks. . .weird. haha

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