Movie Night by Ginny
It‘s movie time again! This time, I‘m going to talk about movies that were not only shot but also set in Toronto. Their number is much lower than those that were only filmed here, but some are definitely worth seeing. The following films are not Canadian productions, however, so they have made our city better known internationally.
This 2003 movie, based on a real-life story, deals with the unpleasant topic of gambling addiction. Its biggest star is multiple academy award winner Philip Seymour Hoffman. The plot is centred around a Toronto employee of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, who, thanks to his lies, has taken millions from the bank and its clients to support his gambling addiction.
Owning Mahowny was a box office success and generally received positive reviews. According to Rotten Tomatoes, 72 per cent of the audience thinks the movie is good, and 78 per cent of the approved Tomatometer critics share that opinion. The film has similar ratings on IMDb (International Movie database), where it received seven out of ten points. Owning Mahowny is definitely worth seeing — especially because gambling addiction is an all too serious problem.
Big names, not so great reviews. That is how we can characterize the 2006 action thriller. With stars like the charismatic Michael Douglas, the charming Kiefer Sutherland, and the beautiful Eva Longoria, this movie seemed destined for greatness. The overall reviews were not very favourable, though — not even by Torontonians. On IMDb, with 25,460 votes, the movie scored six points out of ten, which isn‘t too pitiful, but on Rotten Tomatoes, it did more poorly. Approximately 46 per cent of the audience liked it, and only 33 per cent of the approved Tomatometer critics thought the movie was good.
The film is based on a novel by former Secret Service Agent Gerald Petievich, and it deals with the betrayal of a US Secret Service agent protecting the US president. Toronto plays and important role here, as one of the key parts of the movie — an assassination attempt on the president, takes place at a G8 conference in the city. However, in spite of being set partly in Toronto, the Sentinel was actually filmed mostly in Washington, D.C. and Kleinburg, Ontario.
Scott Pilgrim vs. the World
This 2010 film is based on a graphic novel series by Bryan Lee O’Malley, and unlike the last movie we mentioned, it has gotten fairly positive reviews. So far, 83,278 IMDb users voted on the movie, and it got 7.7 points out of ten. Furthermore, on Rotten Tomatoes, the movie was reviewed positively by about 83 per cent of the audience and 81 per cent of the approved Tomatometer critics. The same source considers the film to be “fast, funny and inventive.”
Wondering what it’s about? Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is the fascinating story of a young Canadian guitarist living in Toronto (Scott Pilgrim) who becomes infatuated with an American delivery girl, Ramona Flowers. To get the girl, he has to fight will seven of her evil exes who want to kill him. The film is not only set in Toronto, but it was also filmed in our city.