Search Transit Toronto

Powered by GOOGLE.

Films With a Transit Focus Next Week

I received this news release from the Planet in Focus Film Fest

Local Historian and Transit Chronicler Mike Filey to Present
Toronto in the Silent Cinema
at the Planet in Focus Film Festival
November 5, 11am - 1pm @ the Toronto Archives

Local Toronto historian Mike Filey will co-present Toronto in the Silent Cinema showcasing films from 1904 to 1931, including early footage of transit in Toronto. The films are part of the Spotlight Program on Toronto in the Moving Image Since the Dawn of Cinema to the Present, a retrospective that reveals Toronto as an evolving work in progress.

Mike Filey was born in Toronto in 1941. He attended North Toronto Collegiate Institute and Ryerson Polytechnical Institute where he received a diploma in Chemical Technology.

Following stints at the Ontario Water Resources Commission (renamed the Ontario Ministry of the Environment), the Canadian National Exhibition (from 1974-79) and at Canada’s Wonderland (from 1979-1982) he turned his interests to researching and recording the fascinating history of his hometown. He has written nearly two dozen books on various facets of Toronto’s past.

One of his most popular books is “The TTC Story, the First 75 Years.” Mike came by his desire to record the history of the Toronto Transit Commission honestly, having first relied on the Commission’s streetcars to get him to and from the Bathurst and St. Clair Branch of the public library from his home at 758 Bathurst Street (top floor flat over the bicycle store) when he was just 8 years old - “and if you get lost, tell the policeman your phone number is Melrose 2154”.

He remembers a horse trough at the Bathurst/Bloor comer, some guy named Mirvish running a store just along the street, seeing the Wizard of Oz over and over again at the late, lamented Alhambra Theatre (and being forcibly removed from the theatre by his father) and, especially, the nearby Downyflake donut shop where he learned his first piece of poetry:

“As you go through life brother, whatever be your goal,
Keep your eye upon the donut and not upon the hole.”

For this very special presentation, reserve your tickets now as seating is limited.

November 5, 11am - 1pm
Toronto Archives, 255 Spadina Rd.

The silent films will be presented with a screening of The Alex Wilson Community Garden. For details, please visit

Other films on transit themes at Planet in Focus include:

A Whale of a Tale
(Peter Lynch, Canada, documentary, 2004, 45 mins)

Details the miraculous discovery of a whale bone by a Toronto Transit Commission subway construction crew in Toronto in the 1980’s. Saturday November 4, 1:00pm-3:00pm @ the ROM

Contested Streets: Breaking New York City Gridlock
(Stefan Schaefer, USA, documentary, 2006, 57 mins)

New York City has blossomed into a nightmare of perpetual gridlock, but Contested Streets seeks solutions in a few hopeful places: Copenhagen, Paris, and London are all taking steps to reduce traffic and encourage walking, public transit and bicycling. Saturday November 4, 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM @ Innis College

By phone: 416-968-FILM (3456)
In Person: Manulife Centre, 55 Bloor St. West

Support us on Patreon Button

Welcome to Transit Toronto! This is an information site dedicated to public transportation in Toronto, maintained by transit enthusiasts for transit enthuasiasts. This is NOT the official website of the Toronto Transit Commission, Metrolinx or any other transit provider or government agency. To access the official websites of these agencies, consult this page here.