Just a quick note to point out that one of Canadian film history's greatest figures, the director/cinematographer Michel Brault, is being honored with a retrospective at TIFF this year. (For more on Brault, here's a post I did on Quebecois cinema a few months ago.)
Over the years I've seen most of the films in this program, so I thought I'd make some recommendations.
There are at least three unmissables:
-- Chronicle of a Summer (Jean Rouch & Edgar Morin, 1961), the seminal French "Direct Cinema" film on which Brault served as cinematographer, bringing innovations in camera equipment and technique learned from his years at the National Film Board of Canada (NFB).
-- Pour la Suite du Monde (Pierre Perrault & Michel Brault, 1963), a documentary about age-old whale-hunting practices in rural Quebec. Probably the single most famous Canadian documentary, and the first Canadian film to compete at Cannes.
-- Les Bons Debarras (Francis Mankiewicz, 1980), a brilliant rural-Gothic mother-daughter drama, is often cited in polls of the best Canadian films ever made. It was shot by Brault and is the "Canadian Open Vault" film at TIFF this year.
In addition, let me recommend Brault's excellent Les Ordres (1974, winner of Best Director at Cannes) and Entre la Mer et L'eau Douce (1967, his first feature, with Genevieve Bujold).
Honestly, after TIFF '07 is over and done, I suspect many of the above films will be among the strongest that end up playing there. Which is why I wanted to make sure I put in a little word for them.
Personally, I'll be looking forward to seeing his shorts, which I've never been able to catch so far.