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Which film festivals have the best lineups?

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  • Daniel Montgomery
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    #193936

    The vast majority of the general public don’t get to see filmss while they’re at, say, Cannes, Sundance, Telluride, etc., but most of those films are eventually released to theaters and then DVD/streaming/on-demand.

    Which festival do you think usually has the strongest lineup when you look back at what they’ve premiered and showcased, not in terms of Oscar prospects, but just in terms of pure quality?

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    FilmGuy619
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    #193938

    Sundance.

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    CanadianFan
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    #193939

    There is Telluride and Toronto, and then everything else.

    Toronto has the edge if you want to see a lot of big titles for the Oscar season, as well as the big foreign-language picks for the year, and the best documentaries. The festival showcases around 400 films, so it is massive.

    Telluride has a better ratio of good:bad as it is much more selective and small. They also tend to get one or two big exclusive films that don’t hit Toronto, as well as a few premieres before Toronto. Still, they don’t have nearly  as many foreign-language films or docs.

    If you are just going to a festival without a lot of preparation, Telluride would be your best bet (most expensive festival, though). If you do your research beforehand, Toronto wins.  

    Critical favorites from Toronto last year (discounting Oscar films):
    Clouds of Sils Maria, Coming Home, 99 Homes, Eden, Force Majeure, Hungry Hearts, Love & Mercy, Mommy, Mr. Turner, Nightcrawler, Phoenix, Pride, Still Alice, Two Days, One Night, While We’re Young, A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence, Goodbye to Language, Winter Sleep, Red Army, Sunshine Superman, The Look of Silence, The Duke of Burgundy, Girlhood, The Tribe, It Follows, The Guest, What We Do in the Shadows, Top Five, St. Vincent, Maps to the Stars

    Not to mention the Oscar-y type films:
    The Imitation Game, The Theory of Everything, Whiplash, Wild Tales, Leviathan, The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, Timbuktu, Wild, Foxcatcher

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    manakamana
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    #193940

    Sundance sets the indie narrative for the year and Cannes usually sets the pace for the arthouse theaters that year (or for some stragglers the early year after), but usually when all is said and done I find Berlin has the really special hidden gems. NYFF is always a pretty good summary of the high profile fest titles from around the world, but sometimes I get aggravated with some of the higher-profile titles they leave out since that’s the easeist one for me to go to. 

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    Riley
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    #193941

    The Vancouver International Film Festival showcased 375 films.

    1. The True Cost
    2. Taxi
    3. Victoria
    4. Room
    5. Deathgasm
    6. Dheepan
    7. Cop Car
    8. 45 Years
    9. Son of Saul
    10. Accused
    11. Racing Extinction
    12. The Chinese Mayor
    13. The Summer of Sangailé
    14. My Internship in Canada
    15. Embrace of the Serpent
    16. The Lobster
    17. Murmur of the Hearts
    18. Ixcanul
    19. Louder Than Bombs
    20. Steak (R)evolution
    21. The Anarchists
    22. Marshland
    23. Beeba Boys
    24. Rams
    25. 600 Miles
    26. The Treasure
    27. Home Care
    28. Hurricane
    29. The Measure of a Man
    30. I Promise You Anarchy
    31. The Falling
    32. Charlotte’s Song
    33. Chronic
    34. London Road
    35. The Daughter
    36. Arabian Nights
    37. Francofonia
    38. Entertainment

    Best Film: Michael Ross, The True Cost
    Best Director: Sebastian Schipper, Victoria
    Best Screenplay: Jafar Panahi, Taxi
    Best Lead Actor: Jocob Tremblay, Room
    Best Lead Actress: Kalieaswari Srinivasan, Dheepan
    Best Supporting Actor: Kevin Bacon, Cop Car
    Best Supporting Actress: Adèle Exarchopoulos, The Anarchists
    Best Casting: Robin D. Cook & Fiona Weir, Room
    Best Cinematography: Cyril Barbançon, Hurricane
    Best Costumes, Hair & Makeup: Brandon Peterson & Sarah Elizabeth & Jaala Leis Wanless, Charlotte’s Song
    Best Editing: Jeff Hurrell & Gareth Van Niekerk, Deathgasm
    Best Music: Julio de la Rosa, Marshland
    Best Production Design: Jessica Leigh Clark-Bojin & Victoria Pearson, Charlotte’s Song
    Best Sound: Tamás Zányi & Tamás Dévényi & Tamás Székely, Son of Saul
    Best Stunts & Choreography: Zoltán Gulyás Kiss, Son of Saul
    Best Visual, Special & Animated Effects: Johnathan Guest & Michael A. Miller, Deathgasm

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    seabel
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    #193942

    Cannes.

    Hands down. 

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    Spartak
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    #193943

    First of all, Telluride is not a “real” festival, but much more a festival of festivals. Also, I suppose that even if most of us don’t get to see those films at major festivals, we do have a chance to catch many of those at small festivals at our region (for example I have at least 2 of such a kind).
    Regarding the question, I’d say that I prefer Sundance, but if I objectivly check my ratings it goes to Cannes. 

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