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ZOOM (#TIFF15 Review)


Directed by Pedro Morelli / Written by Matt Hansen / Starring Gael Garcia Bernal, Alison Pill and Jason Priestley

Emma (referring to sex doll customization options): Scarlett Johansson and Beyoncé are very popular right now.

ZOOM is a unique experience. The movie has three different storylines that eventually intersect and it combines live action sequences filmed in either glorious colour or sensuous sepia-toned black and white, with animation reminiscent of the famous a-ha “Take On Me” music video. The plot, in a nutshell, is about Emma (Alison Pill) who works in a factory that makes sex dolls and at night, draws a cartoon strip starring Edward (Gael Garcia Bernal), a well-endowed action movie director. Edward is struggling to make his movie about Michelle (Mariana Ximenes), a model who wants to be a novelist and is writing a book about a cartoonist. Emma, unhappy with her breast implants as they get in the way of her drawing and can’t afford to have them removed retaliates by shrinking the size of Edward’s manhood, who now has lost his creative edge as well as a large number of inches. Along the way we meet a live action Jason Priestly and an animated Don McKellar. Yes, it’s all a very trippy mindfuck!


ZOOM tackles many a subject with verve and wit, though near the end of its 96 minute running time, it gets a little caught up in its own cleverness. Impressively filmed by cinematographer Adrian Teijido with standard by-the-book animation, I can’t for the life of me figure out the target audience for this movie. The best I can come up with are those who want to spark up a doobie, giggle at the naked mannequins and animated babes, realize the best place to stash your cocaine is in barbells and scratch your head at all the plot machinations.

3 sheep

ZOOM screens at TIFF15 as part of the Vanguard program. This is the screening information:

Tuesday, September 15, 10:15 PM, Scotiabank 12

Wednesday, September 16, 9:45 PM, Scotiabank 12

For more information and for tickets, please visit

Your turn!

How many sheep would you give Zoom?


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