Can’t-Miss Films at the Toronto International Film Festival

Image via: @knivesout (Instagram)

The Toronto International Film Festival is back! The 2019 edition begins September 5 and runs for ten sweet days, capping things off on September 15. For those ten days, Toronto buzzes with excitement as some of the biggest names in Hollywood flock to the city to promote their upcoming movies. With Oscars season upon us, TIFF buzz often serves as an early indicator of awards results; the Festival plays host to some of the most talked-about movies of the year, and 2019 is no exception. Continue reading for a list of can’t-miss films at TIFF.


Image via: @jaxson_is_awesome (Instagram)

After premiering at the 76th Venice International Film Festival in August, Joker makes it second debut, this time in Toronto. The highly anticipated psychological thriller is a far cry from your typical comic book movie, with Joaquin Phoenix taking on the iconic role of the Joker. The film chronicles the rise of the Joker, who turns to a life of crime in Gotham after failing at stand-up comedy in the early 1980s. Robert De Niro, Zazie Beetz, Frances Conroy, and Marc Maron round out the cast.


Image via: @jloarabiax (Instagram)

Hustlers, the latest all-female comedy to hit the silver screen, makes its world premiere at TIFF 2019. The film stars an ensemble cast led by Jennifer Lopez, including Constance Wu, Keke Palmer, Lizzo, Julia Stiles, Cardi B, and Lili Reinhart. The plot of Hustlers focuses on a group of strippers who are forced to lie and steal from wealthy men in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.

Knives Out

Image via: @knivesout (Instagram)

From director Rian Johnson of Star Wars: The Last Jedi comes Knives Out. This neo-noir black comedy has been described as a modern murder mystery, in which a patriarch (played by Christopher Plummer) invites his family to his mansion in celebration of his 85th birthday, only to be later found dead. As a result, each family member becomes a murder suspect. Other cast members include Chris Evans, Daniel Craig, Toni Collette, and Jamie Lee Curtis. The Toronto International Film Festival marks the first time the movie will be seen by audiences, and personally, we can’t wait to see this star-studded cast on the big screen.


Image via @renee_zellweger (Instagram)

Renee Zellweger is back — and this time, with a bang! She takes on the iconic role of Judy Garland in the new film Judy. The biopic follows the life of Garland over the course of five weeks as she performs sold out shows in London, England. For those who don’t know, it is an adaptation of the West End and Broadway play End of the Rainbow. Rufus Sewell, Michael Gambon, and Finn Wittrock also star in the film, which will be making its world premiere at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival.


Image via: @professorpavy (Instagram)

It’s quite a year for biopics. Yet another film to have its world premiere at TIFF 2019 is Harriet, a biographical drama that captures the life of Harriet Tubman. The film will follow the famed abolitionist as she escapes slavery and helps hundreds of others gain their freedom through the Underground Railroad. British actress Cynthia Erivo takes on the title role, with a supporting cast that includes Janelle Monae, Leslie Odom Jr., Joe Alwyn, and Jennifer Nettles.



Emily Southey
Emily Southey is a freelance writer from Vancouver. Currently based in Toronto, it was during her time studying History and English at McGill and University College London that she became interested in writing. When she's not working, you can typically find her in a museum, baking cupcakes, watching Disney musicals, or Instagramming her new favourite coffee spot.