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Whale, Zwigato to The Fabelmans: What to watch at the Toronto International Film Festival 2022

The ongoing 47th Toronto International Film Festival features titles from around the world, as well as special events, with some of the biggest names in the industry.

Whale, Zwigato to The Fabelmans: What to watch at the Toronto International Film Festival 2022
Stills from The Whale, Zwigato and The Fabelmans/Twitter
  • Team OTTplay

Last Updated: 10.13 AM, Sep 14, 2022


The 47th edition of the Toronto International Film Festival began on September 8 and runs until September 18. The Festival will once again be a full-scale omnibus of films with an amazing line-up that includes Steven Spielberg's The Fabelmans, Rian Johnson's Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, and Nandita Das's Zwigato. The top prize in Toronto is not decided by a jury but rather by an audience vote. TIFF decided to hold most of its screenings digitally in 2020 and 2019 to comply with public health regulations. The festival's pre-pandemic programming, which consisted primarily of in-person activities, is being reinstated this year.

Let's look at some important films to keep an eye out for at the TIFF.

The Whale

Directed by Darren Aronofsky, this one marked Brendan Fraser's comeback. The movie's original January 2021 announcement included Aronofsky as the director and Fraser as the lead actor. Shortly after the announcement of the project, Hong Chau, Sadie Sink, and Samantha Morton joined the cast. The screenplay was written by Samuel D Hunter, who also wrote the original 2012 play. The Whale tells the story of a 600-pound man named Charlie, played by Fraser, who is struggling to try and reconnect with his teenage daughter, Sink after he abandoned her and her mother to be with a same-sex partner.

The Whale premiered at the 79th Venice International Film Festival, as well.

The Menu

A group of lovers of exquisite dining travels to a distant island in search of the ultimate haute cuisine experience, only to find that they are unable to handle what comes next. Ralph Fiennes and Anya Taylor-Joy are the stars of the satire Succession by Mark Mylod.


The Kapil Sharma-starrer Zwigato is directed by Nandita Das, who made critically-acclaimed films like Firaaq and Manto. “This means a lot to me personally as I have debuted there both as an actor and director, with Fire and Firaaq respectively. Over the years, several other films have taken me to TIFF. I hope the universality of the theme of the film will resonate with the amazing audiences that the festival attracts from all over the world,” Das said in a statement.

Sameer Nair, CEO of Applause Entertainment, described Zwigato as a peek into the lives of the “often unseen people” who are the heart and soul of the nation and its economy.

“While the film is set in urban India, we believe that the themes of this film transcend geographical boundaries and will resonate with the global audience," added Nair.

Zwigato captures what an ‘ordinary’ family faces in the post-pandemic world, said the makers. “It is the story of the relentless struggle of life, but not without shared moments of joy. It is life like – bittersweet,” they added.

Also written by Das, the Bhubaneswar-set film features Sharma as a food delivery person exploring the world of the gig economy. Goswami plays his wife, a homemaker, who to support his income, starts to work for the very first time.

The Fabelmans

The Fabelmans, which Spielberg wrote with Tony Kushner, draws extensively from the director's childhood - from his parents, played by Michelle Williams and Paul Dano in the film, and from his early formation as a filmmaker.

The Fabelmans will release on November 11 in New York and Los Angeles before expanding nationwide on November 23.

The film is set in post-World War II USA and deals with various themes that represent that era.

The Fabelmans stars Gabriel LaBelle as young Sammy Fabelman; he is joined by an ensemble cast that includes Michelle Williams, Seth Rogen, and Paul Dano. Legendary filmmaker David Lynch is reported to make an appearance in the film.

Spielberg is producing the film under his Amblin Entertainment along with Universal Pictures.

Kacchey Limbu

This one highlights the importance of freedom of choice, something that most women in India don't enjoy, according to Radhika Madan, known for films like English Medium, Mard Ko Dard Nahi Hota and Pataakha. The Indian actor plays the people-pleasing Aditi in the film.

“It's a coming-of-age story for Aditi with a sibling drama. The reason I chose the script is that in India 90% of women or even more I would say don't have the choice to decide their dream, it's always decided for them,” Madan said, in a statement.

Further, she added, “They don't have the luxury of figuring out what they like. So, they are looking for validation from their parents, their siblings."

Also featuring Udaan star Rajat Barmecha, Kacchey Limbu follows a pair of siblings as they struggle to balance their families' expectations while pursuing their passions.

“Aditi, the younger sibling, is trying to please her parents and friends by following their dreams for her. Akash (Barmecha), the older brother, is resisting everyone's ideas for his future while trying to hold on to his childhood dream. Their story shows us how dreams can change us, and how sometimes, we change our dreams,” the official synopsis reads.

Kacchey Limbu is produced by Jyoti Deshpande, Pranjal Khandhdiya and Neha Anand.

To Kill A Tiger

This one, directed by Nisha Pahuja, tells the story of Ranjit, a farmer in India whose world is turned upside down after his 13-year-old daughter is gang raped. The other villagers demand that he marry her to one of the rapists to not bring shame to the community. Instead, Ranjit defies convention and fights for justice.

The Banshees of Inisherin

What starts as a lifelong friendship between two men gradually unravelling ends up as a tense standoff involving the entire fictional village of Inisherin when one of them issues a gory ultimatum. Writer-director Martin McDonagh reunites with his actors Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson for the first time since his sublime dark comedy In Bruges (2008).

Empire of Light

Directed by the Oscar-winning Sam Mendes, Empire of Light is set in and around a beautiful old cinema on the South Coast of England in the 1980s. It marks Mendes’ first solo outing as a screenwriter.

Love, race, and film are the three main topics. Mendes has made real-world commentary using the fiction of film.

It's a scorcher of a movie, unquestionably one of the best of the year, with a star-making performance from Ward and an unbelievably sublime performance from Colman who captures the fragility of a lonely woman searching for, and hoping that the embrace of her young colleague will allow her safe passage through the tremors and terrors of mental illness.

Several years ago in a New Yorker interview, Mendes discussed the impact of mental illness on his family growing up. "Look, I’m an only child and I grew up with my mother and my mother suffered from mental issues. So a lot of these things [in the film] are from a deeply personal place,” he told Deadline.

While We Watched

The movie poses the following questions: What does being a journalist today entail? What affects journalists who work on the field every day? How can slow journalism endure in a society that values quick gratification? If the organisations, audiences, and other models that once supported those fighting for the truth are no longer there, how can they continue to exist?

Anyone interested in the state of television journalism should watch While We Watched. Despite having Indian roots, the movie's portrayal of how false information undermines fact-based news might be applied to any number of nations, from Russia to the United States.

Veteran journalist Ravish Kumar of India's NDTV, who works to safeguard principles of independence and accountability, occupies a central role in the movie.

Vinay Shukla, a filmmaker, conveys this tale with the urgency of breaking news. The accelerator is depressed to the floor from the start and is never released. One enjoyment of the movie is seeing persistent reporters experience the exhilaration of gaining scoops. Kumar continues to be a ray of hope in India's increasingly depressing news environment because of his professionalism and commitment to teaching newer reporters. Their tenacity in the face of chaos is amazing to witness.

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery

The film is a sequel to Rian Johnson’s 2019 whodunnit film Knives Out. A private investigator named Benoit Blanc will be the star of the Knives Out franchise. He solves enigmatic cases that at first seem impossible to solve.

In the movie, Edward Norton, Janelle Monáe, Kathryn Hahn, Leslie Odom Jr., Jessica Henwick, Madelyn Cline, Kate Hudson, and Dave Bautista are among the ensemble cast, with Daniel Craig playing Benoit Blanc.

Netflix acquired the rights to two additional sequels following the first movie's commercial success.

A software billionaire played by Edward Norton invites his famous friends to a private dinner on a Greek island. When one of his pals is murderously murdered, things get ugly. Daniel Craig's character, Detective Benoit Blanc, is requested to the island to solve the mystery.

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery will debut on Netflix on December 23 after a November theatrical premiere in the US.