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Toronto Film Festival is All About the Music

This year's Toronto International Film Festival has turned into an veritable jam session, with many of the films and documentaries being screened owing most of their zest to music. There's The Secret Life of Bees, based on the Sue Monk Kidd novel and set in the civil rights 1960s, whose storyline is stitched together by a cello played by Alicia Keys' character. And there's Spike Lee's Miracle at St. Anna, which reunites the filmmaker with award-winning composer Terence Blanchard, the mastermind behind some of his most important films. It's all great to see, as music was an afterthought for a lot of motion pictures over the past decade. Not anymore.  Even the documentaries being screened are getting in on the act, from the music-centric It Might Get Loud, an ode to the electric guitar, and Every Little Step, which chronicles the musical A Chorus Line, to the one documentary I can't wait to see: Jeffrey Levy-Hinte's Soul Power, which captures James Brown, B.B. King, and the Spinners at a 1974 music festival in Zaire, Africa, the site of the infamous Ali-Foreman "Rumble in the Jungle." The fest was originally supposed to accompany the fight, but logistical issues made it a standalone event. And now, that classic footage is finally available. A reporter asked Queen Latifah how movies are like music.  Her reply?  "Music is all about you.  And in the movies, that you gets poured into somebody else."  This week, it's being poured into the section of Toronto where the film festival is taking place.  Good times. [TIFF]


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