Abandoned by her mother when she was a child, Shell has stayed to take care of her dying father but now feels trapped within the beautiful but desolate landscape that surrounds her. With only her routine of running the decaying petrol station, taking care of her father, and spending afternoons in her bedroom with a local mechanic, life is passing Shell by with every passing truck that rattles her walls. One day a salesman stops to re-fuel and offers Shell a taste of the outside world that takes her closer than ever to the edge of the road and her desire to escape.
“If you hide from death, you hide from life.” Teenage Emily (Harry Potter’s Evanna Lynch) inherits this mantra from her father Robert (Michael Smiley, also at this year’s Festival in The Lobster), an author and philosopher of sorts, whose lectures and writings encourage others to live for the moment at the expense of social niceties.
But following the tragic death of Emily’s mother, Robert starts to change, and his visionary eccentricities now appear to be symptoms of mental illness. Robert is soon institutionalized, and Emily is sent away to live with foster parents and attend a school where everyone dismisses her as a weirdo — everyone, that is, except Arden (George Webster), an awkward but endearing classmate with family problems of his own.
When Emily suddenly decides to travel north to bust her father out of his psychiatric hospital, the hopelessly smitten Arden joins her on a renegade road trip that will give both youngsters their first taste of what it truly means to be alive. [Synopsis courtesy of TIFF]
A love story set in the near future where single people, according to the rules of The City, are arrested and transferred to The Hotel. There they are obliged to find a matching mate in 45 days. If they fail, they are transformed into an animal of their choosing and released into The Woods. A desperate Man escapes from The Hotel to The Woods where The Loners live and falls in love, although it is against their rules. [Synopsis courtesy of Cannes Film Festival]
Deep within the darkness of secluded forest land in rural Ireland dwells an ancient evil. Feared by the nearby superstitious villagers as cursed creatures who prey upon the lost, their secrets have been kept from civilization and remain on their hallowed ground. But when a conservationist from London moves in with his wife and infant child in order to survey the land for future construction, his actions unwittingly disturb the horde of demonic forces. Alone in a remote wilderness, he must now ensure his family’s survival from their relentless attacks. [Synopsis courtesy of Sundance Film Festival]
A young south Dublin cabdriver, John (Jack Reynor) barely makes ends meet. He shares social housing with his mother, Jean (Toni Collette), an unwavering alcoholic who is systematically drinking herself to death. Hospitalized after another overdose, Jean’s best hope is a costly private rehab clinic. Desperate and without money or insurance, John takes a shady job from the ambiguous criminal element he’s loosely connected to. [Synopsis courtesy of Sundance Film Festival]
Five friends who reunite in an attempt to top their epic pub crawl from 20 years earlier unwittingly become humankind’s only hope for survival.
Aaron, a young misfit living in a remote Scottish fishing community, is the lone survivor of a strange fishing accident that claimed the lives of five men including his older brother. Spurred on by sea-going folklore and local superstition, the village blames Aaron for this tragedy, making him an outcast amongst his own people. Steadfastly refusing to believe that his brother has died, he sets out to recover him and the rest of men.