Blair Witch and Sadako vs. Kayako among TIFF Midnight Madness films

Last Updated on August 5, 2021

Free Fire Ben Wheatley Brie Larson Cillian Murphy Armie Hammer

The 41st Toronto International Film Festival is scheduled to run from September 8th to 18th, and as part of that event comes the Cineplex Entertainment-sponsored Midnight Madness line-up of "excessive, unrelenting, weird, and wild films".

Midnight Madness kicks off with the opening night film FREE FIRE (pictured above), from KILL LIST director Ben Wheatley, and culminates with the closing night film, J-horror monster mash-up SADAKO VS. KAYAKO. In between those there will be the world premieres of Adam Wingard's BLAIR WITCH sequel (pictured below), the James Gunn/Greg McLean collaboration THE BELKO EXPERIMENT, and a new action film starring THE RAID's Iko Uwais, the North American premieres of THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS and Paul Schrader's crime thriller DOG EAT DOG, and more.

The full list can be seen below, and it sounds like an incredible selection of movies:

The Autopsy of Jane Doe 
André Øvredal, USA 
World Premiere
Tommy Tilden and his son Austin run a family-owned morgue and when the Sheriff brings in their next case — a ‘Jane Doe’ — it seems like an open-and-shut case. But as the autopsy proceeds, Tommy and Austin are left reeling as each layer of their inspection brings frightening new revelations and an unnatural force takes hold of the crematorium. Starring Emile Hirsch and Brian Cox.

The Belko Experiment 
Greg McLean, USA 
World Premiere
On what appears to be a normal day at Belko Industries, Belko employees are horrified when they find out that they’ve become guinea pigs in a company-wide experiment which will lead them to either kill their fellow employees or be murdered themselves. The experiment is masterminded by a mysterious voice which is controlling the loud speaker and instructing the employees to slaughter each other by any means necessary.

Blair Witch 
Adam Wingard, USA 
World Premiere
A group of college students venture into the Black Hills Forest in Maryland to uncover the mysteries surrounding the disappearance of James’ sister who many believe is connected to the legend of the Blair Witch. At first the group is hopeful, especially when a pair of locals offer to act as guides through the dark and winding woods; but as the endless night wears on, the group is visited by a menacing presence. Slowly, they begin to realize the legend is all too real and more sinister than they could have imagined.

Dog Eat Dog 
Paul Schrader, USA 
North American Premiere
Dog Eat Dog is a gritty contemporary crime thriller about a trio of ex-cons, deep in the underbelly of Cleveland, who are hired for a kidnapping. When the botched abduction goes awry and gets completely out of control, the cons find themselves on the run, vowing to stay out of prison at all costs. Starring Nicolas Cage and Willem Dafoe.

Midnight Madness Opening Night Film
Free Fire 
Ben Wheatley, United Kingdom 
World Premiere
Justine has brokered a meeting in a deserted warehouse between two Irishmen and a gang led by Vernon and Ord who are selling them a stash of guns. But when shots are fired in the handover, a heart stopping game of survival ensues. Starring Brie Larson, Cillian Murphy, Michael Smiley, Sharlto Copley, and Armie Hammer.

The Girl With All the Gifts 
Colm McCarthy, United Kingdom 
North American Premiere
A heart-stopping original Sci-fi thriller, about hope, humanity and a young girl who wants to save the world. Based on the critically acclaimed novel by Mike Carey. Starring Gemma Arterton, Paddy Considine, Glenn Close, and Sennia Nanua.

Kimo Stamboel and Timo Tjahjanto, Indonesia 
World Premiere
The indomitable Iko Uwais (The Raid) stars in this fast and furious actioner as an amnesiac whose mysterious past as a killing machine comes to the fore when he takes on the henchmen of a vengeful drug lord.

Morgan Spurlock, USA 
World Premiere
Inspired by Robert Sullivan’s New York Times bestselling book, Rats is a horror documentary that plunges into the darkest depths to expose human kind’s most insidious parasite. Thriving in every corner of the globe, rats are harbingers of disease, death, and psychological trauma. In this film, exterminators, farmers, scientists, and even chefs bring us face-to-face with this complicated creature.

Raw (Grave) 
Julia Ducournau, France/Belgium 
International Premiere
Everyone in Justine's family is a vet. And a vegetarian. At 16, she's a brilliant and promising student. When she starts at veterinary school, she enters a decadent, merciless and dangerously seductive world. During the first week of hazing rituals, desperate to fit in whatever the cost, she strays from her family principles when she eats raw meat for the first time. Justine will soon face the terrible and unexpected consequences of her actions as her true self begins to emerge…

Midnight Madness Closing Night Film
Sadako vs. Kayako 
Kōji Shiraishi, Japan 
International Premiere
After viewing a legendary cursed videotape, Natsumi discovers she has only two days before she will be killed by the demonic entity known as Sadako. The only solution: pitting the demon Sadako against Kayako, an accursed spirit possessing a haunted house where everyone who enters disappears.

If this Midnight Madness line-up is making you want to attend TIFF, tickets to the festival can be purchased at

Blair Witch Adam Wingard

Source: TIFF

About the Author

Cody is a news editor and film critic, focused on the horror arm of, and writes scripts for videos that are released through the JoBlo Originals and JoBlo Horror Originals YouTube channels. In his spare time, he's a globe-trotting digital nomad, runs a personal blog called Life Between Frames, and writes novels and screenplays.