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14 lit-inspired films to watch for at TIFF 2014

Mia Wasikowska as Madame Bovary

Mia Wasikowska as Madame Bovary

This Sunday, the box office opens for nearly 400 films set to screen at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, which takes place on Sept. 4–14.

From author biopics to novel adaptations, this year’s festival is full of lit-inspired films. Below, Q&Q rounds up 14 movies to watch for.

The Underground: CanLit makes an appearance in Toronto-based filmmaker Michelle Latimer’s short-film adaptation of Rawi Hage’s Giller-nominated novel Cockroach. Staged in a magical-realism style, the film is inspired by Hage’s tale of a young Iranian immigrant in Montreal whose encounters with everyday racism and intolerance lead him to imagine living as an insect.

The 50 Year Argument: Martin Scorsese and David Tedeschi co-direct this documentary about The New York Review of Books, which reached its 50th anniversary in 2013. A screening of the film, which includes interviews with the likes of Joan Didion, Michael Chabon, and Colm Tóibín, will be followed by a conversation with Tedeschi, Bob Silvers (who has edited the magazine since its inception), and other special guests.

The HumblingAdapted from the novel by Philip Roth, the film tells the story of an aging actor (Al Pacino) who has an affair with a much younger woman (Greta Gerwig) and may be in the early stages of dementia. Filmmaker Barry Levinson (Wag the DogDonnie Brasco) directs.

Wild: Quebecois filmmaker Jean-Marc Vallée (Café de FloresC.R.A.Z.Y.) directs this Nick Hornby–penned adaptation of Cheryl Strayed’s Oprah-endorsed bestseller of the same name, about a woman (Reese Witherspoon) who hikes the Pacific Crest Trail, hoping to shed her vices.

The GrumpFinnish author Tuomas Kyrö’s “wildly popular novel” is adapted for the screen by fellow Finn Dome Karukoski. The story follows an 80-year-old farmer who decamps for the city, where he must live with his unemployed son and bossy daughter-in-law.