Festival fatigue already?

Yes, it’s only Day 3 of the Atlantic Film Festival. I’ve only seen a half-dozen shorts and maybe seven features, but I can already feel it in my head and in my bones.

It’s something I always forget about the festival even though I’ve covered it since 2004. It’s partly the rushing around, the schmooze and the eating on the run, and at the end of the day blogging about all of it at thecoast.ca.

But the real toll comes from seeing movies, many movies, en masse. It’s harder when the movies are good, too.

Take this evening, the Telefilm Gala presentation of Sarah Polley’s new feature Take This Waltz. (Click here to see my abbreviated thoughts on the film, shortened due to an annoying review embargo imposed on certain films at the Atlantic Film Festival.) My emotions around the film are complicated, but largely due to the fact it’s an engaging, mature and involving film. I love movies and go to them for the very emotional experience I got tonight, but it takes a lot out of me. More so when the movie is good — and there’s no doubt in my mind, even while I have some reservations, the Polley film is very good.

If the picture is crap, then I don’t feel much. Or I just feel annoyed, leave the cinema, and go about my day. But if it’s good, I’m left stunned, moved and changed in a way that can affect the rest of my day, or days. Multiply that feeling by two or three over 10 days, and that’s exhausting.

Not to complain, mind you. I’m just sayin’. If you see my out around Halifax with a glassy look in my eye, it’s just that I’m processing the movie I’ve just seen, before heading in to see another.

About the author


Carsten Knox is a massive, cheese-eating nerd. In the day he works as a journalist in Halifax, Nova Scotia. At night he stares out at the rain-slick streets, watches movies, and writes about what he's seeing.