I’m not exactly sure how to sell you on Frederick Wiseman’s City Hall. This sweeping, sprawling, four-and-a-half-hour documentary is a massive, city-wide examination of the inner workings of Boston’s government and public services. It’s an elaborate, expansive look at what makes a city the way it is, how its citizens and political leaders work hard to keep everything running, and the seemingly endless hurdles that poor and marginalized individuals often need to go through in order to make their voices heard. It’s a bulky, burgeoning enterprise of a documentary that’s as interested in watching town hall officials speak to the masses as it is watching the local garbagemen take out the trash on their regular circuits.
This year’s Toronto International Film Festival has just ended, but we’re just getting started covering and even rediscovering the best and worst of this virtual event. From awards favorites like Nomadland and One Night in Miami to noteworthy standouts like Wolfwalkers and City Hall, we discuss up to 33 films you’ll likely hear even more about as we move into the winter film season.