One-Tank Trip for March 29/14
(c) By Jim Fox
The adults had their fun, now it’s time for kids to enjoy films from around the world.
The TIFF Kids International Film Festival returns in Toronto with premieres of some of the best films for children aged three to 13.
|The Canadian premiere of Rio 2, an animated adventure in the Amazon featuring Blu and Jewel, happens at the TIFF Kids International Film Festival. (Photo courtesy of TIFF)|
TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) kids’ version runs from April 8 to 21 at TIFF Bell Lightbox, Reitman Square, 350 King St. W.
It’s a jungle out there
The festival opens with the Canadian premiere of Rio 2, an all-star sequel to the hit 2011 animated adventure set in the jungles of the Amazon.
It reunites audiences with Blu and Jewel, voiced by Jesse Eisenberg and Anne Hathaway.
This 3-D computer-animated sequel takes the lovebirds and their three young ones to the wilds of South America from the big city.
Returning are the favourite Rio characters with new voice actors including Kristin Chenoweth, Andy Garcia, Bruno Mars and Rita Moreno, and backed by a swinging soundtrack featuring Brazilian artists and original music by Janelle Monae and Wondaland.
|Rio 2 (Photo courtesy of TIFF)|
Closing night features The House of Magic, an animated 3-D feature from Belgium about a young abandoned cat who finds a new home in an enchanted mansion.
The fest features 112 films, with 28 features and 84 shorts, from 31 countries.
“All over the world, innovative filmmakers are stretching the boundaries of traditional children's entertainment and addressing important issues in ways that are accessible to young audiences,” said Elizabeth Muskala, TIFF Kids’ director.
Other films include Knight Rusty, an animated 3-D adventure that speaks to the importance of recycling; I Swan, an inspirational drama from China about animal protection; and The Contest showing how young people can address and overcome cultural stereotypes.
|African Safari will have its North American premiere. (Photo courtesy of TIFF|
African Safari has its North American premiere with a hot-air balloon and Jeep 3-D safari adventure to “real wild Africa.”
Special guests will introduce films and answer questions, including Rio 2 director Carlos Saldanha and executive music producer Sergio Mendes.
There are also Sesame’s Character Design Workshops and mascot meet-and-greets with Elmo, Cookie Monster and Abby Cadabby while Big Bird will introduce a screening of Elmo the Musical.
Tickets cost $12, adults; $9.50, students/seniors; $8.50, 13 and younger; $80, family pack of 10 tickets. Opening night: $25; closing night: $15. tiff.net/kids; 1-800-599-TIFF
Flapjacks and syrup
What is called the “world’s largest single-day maple syrup festival” marks its 50th anniversary in Elmira, north of Kitchener-Waterloo.
|Heaping helpings of flapjacks are smothered in syrup at the Elmira Maple Syrup Festival.|
“Come taste, smell and experience” on April 5 from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., says Ken Jessop, Elmira Maple Syrup Festival chair.
Tapping into spring fun and flavours will be some 70,000 people devouring 15,000 plates of flapjacks washed down by 750 litres of maple syrup.
There are trips to the sugar bush, a pancake-flipping contest, birds of prey show, petting zoo and toys, quilts, crafts, antiques and collectibles.
Add to that cooking demonstrations and food-truck vendors, all with maple-flavoured items.
For children, there are midway and pony rides, inflatables and musical entertainment.
It's free to attend, while pancakes are $4 a single serving and $5 for a double along with a small fee for some events. elmiramaplesyrup.com; 1-877-969-0094
Let it roar
The Maple Leaf Monster Jam Tour kicks into high gear April 5 and 6 at 2 p.m. at FirstOntario Centre (formerly Copps Coliseum) in Hamilton.
|Scott Liddycoat will pilot Dragon’s Breath at the Maple Leaf Monster Jam Tour in Hamilton.|
These huge and mighty trucks that fly through the air are presented by Feld Motor Sports and feature Canadian drivers Cam McQueen in Northern Nightmare and Scott Liddycoat with Dragon’s Breath, said publicist Beth Merrick.
|Cam McQueen’s Northern Nightmare is revving up for the Maple Leaf Monster Jam Tour.|
Other fan-favourite trucks to appear include Grave Digger, Spiderman, Aftershock and Krazy Train.
Tickets are $20; $15 for 12 and younger. monsterjamcanada.ca; 1-855-985-5500
Sip and savour
The Two Fairly Fat Guys are among the celebrity chefs at Eat & Drink Norfolk in Simcoe.
The annual food and drink festival features local wineries, brewers, Silver Lake Vodka, restaurants and food producers along with live entertainment and a silent auction, said publicist Wendy Brick.
It’s at the Aud at the Norfolk County Fairgrounds, 172 South Drive, on April 11, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. and April 12, noon to 10 p.m.
Admission is $10 (19 and older only), with two-for-one on April 12, noon to 3 p.m.; (519) 426-7280
Jim Fox can be reached at email@example.com
For more One-Tank Trips: http://1tanktrips.blogspot.ca