Toronto International Film Festival: Wrapping our Toronto coverage with a first-person shooter, a porn collage, and Idris Elba

Two very different exercises in you-are-there, both from Russia: Sergei Loznitsa’s black-and-white archival documentary The Event (Grade: B-) and Ilya Naishuller’s live-action first-person shooter Hardcore (Grade: C). The Belarusian-born, Ukrainian-raised, German-based Loznitsa’s latest is so squarely a companion piece to both his seminal Siege Of Leningrad documentary Blockade and his recent, much-ballyhooed Maidan that one can’t help but resist both comparisons, and instead try to take on The Event as a record of how people looked, dressed, and walked at a moment now deemed historically important. (Admittedly, this is also an important part of Maidan and especially Blockade; so much for that.)

The title, which smacks of Eastern Bloc sci-fi, refers to the August Putsch, the failed coup d’état which occurred just months before the formal dissolution of the Soviet Union. Loznitsa’s angle is oblique; all of the footage used here was shot in …

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