Jojo Rabbit is the winner of this year’s Toronto Film Festival Grolsch People’s Choice Award. First runner-up was Netflix’s Marriage Story, and the second runner-up was Neon’s Cannes winner Parasite.
The Toronto International Film Festival Grolsch People’s Choice Award is an annual film award, presented by the Toronto International Film Festival to the film rated as the year’s most popular film with festival audiences.
The trophy is considered a bellwether of sorts for the awards-season race even if it is selected by festival moviegoers who vote online following a screening. The festival assures they double check the legitimacy of each vote, and that it came from a ticket holder so as to prevent gaming the system.
In theory, this means that winners are real winners at TIFF.
Waititi’s film was rapturously received by the opening-night audience at its world premiere screening last Sunday. However, critics were decidedly mixed when reviews hit and the film currently stands at 75% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.
The offbeat film from Fox Searchlight is about a boy in Nazi Germany who discovers his mother is harbouring a Jewish girl. A satirical comedy already controversial for edgy comical content revolving around a very serious subject, finds the boy also having conversations with a comical imaginary Adolf Hitler, who is played by Waititi.
This results of the film is a manner of wildly over-the-top, supernatural stereotypes about Jewish people, Hitler acting all wacky, and the audience laughing at the absurdity of it all.
Fox Searchlight will begin platforming Jojo Rabbit on October 18. It has not been considered by pundits to be in the front tier of possible Best Picture Oscar contenders but this TIFF award should considerably boost its profile in that regard.
An honourable mention at the awards includes the Grolsch People’s Choice Midnight Madness Award, with the second runner-up as Jeff Barnaby’s Blood Quantum behind the winner Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia’s The Platform.