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Why Aren’t You Watching TV’s Last Serious Show About Movies?

We’re sitting in the middle of the street, a truck is heading toward us, and we can’t move. Not on principle — we’re not staging a sit-in. It’s because we’re mic’ed up and shooting a TV show at the 2017 Toronto Film Festival. King Street is closed, but festival-approved vehicles still have the right of way. Luckily, the driver sees us and as soon as it passes, without skipping a beat, our host launches into “Hello, and welcome to BBC Culture at the Toronto International Film Festival. I’m Tom Brook.”

With decades of experience under his belt, Brook is unflappable. No wonder his show, “Talking Movies,” is now celebrating its 20th anniversary. If you’re a movie lover and have never heard of “Talking Movies” there’s a gaping hole in your cinephilia: this half-hour show airs monthly in the US and around the world and routinely examines topics in film culture that not only most entertainment TV programs won’t take on, but even many print publications won’t. Each half-hour show, divided into four or five segments, is built around a theme – the Human Rights Watch Film Festival, say, or Indian cinema, let alone the annual 30-minute reports from Sundance, Cannes, and Toronto. There’s simply nothing else on air like “Talking Movies.”

“I didn’t realize that we were the only remaining monthly magazine-style film program until other people started telling me about it,” Brook said.

“Every time I see Tom, I say, ‘You’re the only one left! The only one left!’” indie film publicist Jeff Hill said. “His support and love of film is extraordinary.”

“Talking Movies” is one of

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