Finally it is the turn of the unruly underling to throw potshots at her (sometimes) esteemed Editor! For a change, Sandro and I have swapped roles. The honour of opening our annual coverage of the festival goes to…me, this time. How ya like me now, Bro?

But this isn’t about Cinetalk‘s family issues. Instead, let’s focus on the FNC’s opening film.


A longtime contributor to the festival, Atom Egoyan, is back. With a curious parallel to a film we reviewed at Fantasia in 2018, Guest of Honour, employs the same storytelling mechanism as The House of the Disappeared. Handsome Priest, listen to this crazy story about my family!

But if we look beyond the heavy-handed ‘tell instead of show’ technique (well, hey, even Hitchcock did this), there is some meat here. Humans do awful things, and Egoyan has framed their wrongdoings in such a way as to almost normalize them. The players in the tale seem like fairly ordinary people. But it’s often the grit under the nails that tells the truth.


Guest of Honour – October 9th, 2019, 7 PM, Theatre Maisonneuve. Egoyan and actors Arsinée Khanjian and Rossif Sutherland will be in attendance.

Also showing October 19th, 1 PM, Imperial.

Official FNC Site: