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Use our search function below to sort the films by their English title, the names of directors, or their country of origin. Films can also be filtered by series, genre, or Vancouver International Film Festival venue. You can also browse by film series by visiting our Browse By Series page.

The majority of films in the Vancouver International Film Festival are unrated and you must be 18 and purchase a $2 VIFF membership to attend a screening. However, a selection of films are open to all ages.

Before you make your purchase, please note The Rio is 19+ exclusively with the exception of the rated High School Screenings at this venue.

Spain, Finland, Ethiopia

Duration: 68 mins
Country of Origin: Spain,Finland,Ethiopia, 2015
Altered States

Ethiopia’s otherworldly terrain provides a striking backdrop for Miguel Llanso’s post-apocalyptic love story. There’s a faint whiff of The Wizard of Oz to this fairy tale about a diminutive scavenger’s (Daniel Tadesse) quest across a strange land where Michael Jackson’s Dangerous is currency, Michael Jordan shrines are worshipped and a tyrannical overlord dresses as Santa Claus. Add Nazis, a looming spaceship and bowling alleys to the surreal mix and it all assumes the form of a wondrously distorted dream. “A rare and beautiful thing.”—Indiewire

Fantasy, Sci-fi & Horror


(La Loi du marché)
Duration: 93 mins
Country of Origin: France, 2015
Spotlight on France

The zero-sum game that is the "law of the market" (the French title)—wherein if one wants a job another must be let go—lies at the heart of Stéphane Brizé’s profoundly humanist drama. Vincent Lindon is superb as an unemployed mechanic whose new job in security at a big-box supermarket forces him to make decisions that go against everything he believes in… "A powerfully affecting social drama… Lindon [gives] a veritable master class in understated humanism."—Variety

Economics & Globalization, The Great Divide
Duration: 100 mins
Country of Origin: France, 2015
Special Presentations

Jacques Audiard’s (A Prophet, Rust and Bone) latest dramatic inquiry into life on society’s margins is an alternately gripping and tender love story about the eponymous former Tamil fighter (Antonythasan Jesuthasan) and his improvised family, who exchange war in Sri Lanka for violence of another kind in Paris. "A searing yet hopeful slow-burn drama… Audiard delivers another distinctive [work] with this portrait of a family forged out of necessity…"—Hollywood Reporter

Drama, Immigration
(Trois souvenirs de ma jeunesse)
Duration: 123 mins
Country of Origin: France, 2015
Spotlight on France

An emotionally piercing youthful romance between the adolescents Paul (Quentin Dolmaire, terrific) and Esther (Lou Roy-Lecollinet), told in flashback from the adult Paul’s (Mathieu Amalric) perspective, Arnaud Desplechin’s (A Christmas Tale) supremely intelligent drama is visual storytelling at its finest. "Rich and intensely personal… A roving, restless tale, [it features] some of the most fluid, emotionally resonant filmmaking of Desplechin’s career…"—Variety

Jewish Interest, Romance

France, Belgium

Duration: 100 mins
Country of Origin: France,Belgium, 2015
Spotlight on France

In Alice Winocour’s taut, beautifully controlled drama, an Afghanistan veteran prone to panic attacks (Rust and Bone’s Matthias Schoenaerts, indelible) is hired to protect a wealthy businessman’s wife (Diane Kruger) and child at their luxurious coastal estate. Are the dangers he detects real or are they just PTSD symptoms caused by his war-time experiences? "A pulsing, sexy thriller… Schoenaerts at this point should be certified as a genuine movie star."—Vanity Fair

Drama, Action, Thrills & Suspense

Brazil, France, Argentina

(La Patota)
Duration: 103 mins
Country of Origin: Brazil,France,Argentina, 2015
Cinema of Our Time

Altruistically abandoning her promising law career in order to teach the impoverished, socially conscious Paulina (Dolores Fonzi) finds herself horribly out of her depth in an Argentinean backwater. In the wake of a sexual assault, her convictions are tested and Santiago Mitre’s provocative drama is elevated into a complex examination of the emotional ramifications for victim, perpetrators and those who stood idly by. “Fonzi is riveting in a demanding role…”—Hollywood Reporter

The Great Divide

Spain, France, Argentina

(Zonda, folclore Argentino)
Duration: 85 mins
Country of Origin: Spain,France,Argentina, 2015
Arts and Letters

Carlos Saura’s latest sumptuous documentary plunges us into the heart of traditional Argentine dance and music, via a succession of choreographed tableaux retracing a history rich in métissage. With a unique approach to its mise en scène, documentary images from different regions of Argentina gracefully mix with awe-inspiring traditional songs, performed by the country’s greatest singers, including a tribute to the much revered Mercedes Sosa. Both poetic and fascinating, Saura’s film conjures the entire history of the country and sets it to the tune of guitars and accordion.

Having seduced audiences with his revered “flamenco trilogy,” Carlos Saura now returns to the allure of the tango. Ravishing images from Argentina’s diverse regions combine with a series of immaculately choreographed dance pieces to create a swirling, intoxicating milieu. In turn, staggering performances of traditional Argentine folk songs from revered vocalists such as Soledad Pastorutti and El Chaqueño Palavecino immerse us in the country’s rich history. Lyrical and moving, Argentina is also a glorious reminder that every film should be a passion project.

Aboriginal / First Nations, Music & Arts

Qatar, France, Turkey, Germany

Duration: 94 mins
Country of Origin: Qatar,France,Turkey,Germany, 2015
Cinema of Our Time

Narrated by the youngest of five orphaned sisters living in a small community "1,000 miles from Istanbul," Deniz Gamze Ergüven’s spirited and moving debut—part story of female empowerment and part critique of outdated Turkish mores—tells of the fallout when the sisters’ harmless horseplay on the beach with a group of boys is misinterpreted as some form of sexual adventurism… "A gripping film… The Virgin Suicides in Anatolia is a sweet, sad Turkish delight."—Guardian

Islamic World, Women’s Issues.

France, Poland, Romania

Duration: 95 mins
Country of Origin: France,Poland,Romania, 2015
Cinema of Our Time

Anca Damian’s ambitious mixed-media animated docudrama is a work of overwhelming artistry. Presented as a dialogue between Adam Jacek Winkler—a Quixote-like Pole who fought with the Mujahideen in Afghanistan against the Soviets—and his daughter (who co-wrote the film with Damian), it evokes the powerful personality of an uncompromising individualist and true romantic who lived outside the law due to his love of independence. “Beautifully assembled…”—Hollywood Reporter

Animation, Politics, War & Espionage

France, Germany, Netherlands

Duration: 87 mins
Country of Origin: France,Germany,Netherlands, 2015
Cinema of Our Time

June 1940: German troops march into Paris. Jacques Jaujard (Louis-Do de Lencquesaing) and Count Franziskus Wolff Metternich (Benjamin Utzerat) work to protect the treasures of the Louvre Museum… This is just the jumping-off point for Russian master Alexander Sokurov’s (Russian Ark) gorgeously shot (by Amélie’s Bruno Delbonnel) exploration of the relationship between art, culture and power that traverses the centuries. "Sophisticated, complex and thoroughly absorbing…"—Guardian

Fine Arts or Theatre, History, War & Espionage

UK, France, Germany, Malaysia, Thailand

(Rak Ti Khonkaen)
Duration: 121 mins
Country of Origin: UK,France,Germany,Malaysia,Thailand, 2015
Dragons & Tigers

Somewhere in Isan, in Thailand’s Deep Northeast, an ancient royal cemetery is being disturbed by developers. Nearby a school pressed into service as an army hospital houses soldiers with a mysterious sleeping sickness. What’s the connection? Apichatpong’s inimitable mix of dream, fact and speculative fiction teases out the answer, with some steely political implications. Very different in tone and style from Uncle Boonmee, but no less haunting. Tony Rayns


Yemen, France, United Arab Emirates

(Ana Nojoom bent alasherah wamotalagah)
Duration: 99 mins
Country of Origin: Yemen,France,United Arab Emirates, 2014
Cinema of Our Time

In 2009, the story of Yemeni teenager Nojoom Ali’s bid to legally extricate herself from an abusive, arranged marriage to a much older man made headlines. Khadija Al-Salami has beautifully adapted the subsequent bestseller into an emphatic drama featuring a wonderful performance from Reham Mohammed as the young Ali and a striking backdrop of Yemen’s astonishing mountain villages and ancient “skyscrapers.” "A powerful, moving and provocative debut drama…"—Screen

Human Rights & Social Justice, Women’s Issues., Youth Under 18 May Attend

Spain, France

Duration: 74 mins
Country of Origin: Spain,France, 2015
Cinema of Our Time

An immersive experience that casts a hypnotic spell, Mauro Herce’s sui generis drama can be read as an allegory for late capitalism or taken at face value as a haunting look at the freighter Fair Lady and its Filipino crew on a mission that only comes to light when a natural disaster occurs. Awash in reds and greens, the film gives off an otherworldly glow—we could just as easily be ensconced in a spaceship on a science-fiction journey… Transfixing.

Experimental & Avant garde

USA, Chile, France

Duration: 100 mins
Country of Origin: USA,Chile,France, 2015
Cinema of Our Time

Having cajoled a friend (Kristen Wiig) into carrying their baby, a Brooklyn artist (director Sebastián Silva) discovers that his sperm count isn’t up to snuff and taps in his unenthused partner (Tunde Adebimpe). His disastrous video installation and increasingly unstable neighbour ensure that chaos reigns in Silva’s incisive, merciless satire. "A startling drama of extreme moral ambiguity… [and] a vibrant, thoughtful piece about modern life…"—Hollywood Reporter

Drama, Queer Interest

France, Russia

Duration: 96 mins
Country of Origin: France,Russia, 2015
Spotlight on France

This assured, astute biopic from the late René Féret actually winds its way through an entire formative decade for the physician-turned-playwright (Nicolas Giraud) as he discovers his voice and purpose, and intrigues us at every turn. “This can be credited not only to Féret’s precise writing and direction but also to the strength of Giraud as a performer, as he manages to project his character’s emotions with just a look or the tiniest of facial movements.”—Hollywood Reporter

Fine Arts or Theatre, Biography, Family Relations, Literary (inc. Adaptations)

UK, France

Duration: 82 mins
Country of Origin: UK,France, 2014
Nonfiction Features

Beginning its journey as an ominous sandstorm in Senegal, then heading west across the Atlantic to toss enormous ships and waves topsy-turvy before finally crashing into the jungles of the Caribbean, Hurricane Lucy is our home for 82 minutes, and it is a truly awesome, scary and incredible place. Lizards, bats, frogs, horses, homeless men, rivers, ocean reefs, the US Gulf coast… all bend before Lucy’s immense power. Andy Byatt (Blue Planet) and Cyril Barbançon teamed up with NASA to create this genuinely thrilling and immersive experience that must be seen on the big screen!

Adventures Outdoors, Environment, Youth Under 18 May Attend

France, Lithuania, Netherlands

Duration: 88 mins
Country of Origin: France,Lithuania,Netherlands, 2015
Cinema of Our Time

A flight of fancy from Alanté Kavaïté, this dreamy, coming-of-age story focuses on 17-year-old Sangailé (Julija Steponaitytė), a young woman with a fascination for flying and a contradictory fear of the same. Until, that is, she meets the fearless Auste (Aistė Diržiūtė) and the two young women fall in love… Punctuated by a charmingly aestheticized eroticism that is entirely appropriate to this crisply told tale, Sangailé is a touching and deeply empathetic gem.

Queer Interest, Style in Film, Youth Under 18 May Attend

Iran, France, Germany

Duration: 93 mins
Country of Origin: Iran,France,Germany, 2014
Arts and Letters

Before the Islamic Revolution banned solo performances by women, Iran boasted popular female vocalists like Delkash and Googoosh. No longer willing to see women’s voices silenced, musician Sara Najafi aspires to stage a concert in Tehran. Her brother Ayat helms this revealing documentary that details the bureaucratic obstacles and theological arguments that stand between her and such a seemingly simple goal. And while the women’s glorious songs lend the film uplift, it’s Sara’s courageous determination in battling institutional discrimination that truly inspires.

Human Rights & Social Justice, Islamic World, Music & Arts, VIFF Impact, Women’s Issues.

Egypt, France, Jordan, Netherlands, South Africa

Duration: 107 mins
Country of Origin: Egypt,France,Jordan,Netherlands,South Africa, 2014
Arts and Letters

A beautifully realized paean to art and democracy, set in Istanbul, Cairo, Beirut and Alexandria, François Verster’s ambitious, multilayered documentary combines the tale of Shahrazad (and the 1001 stories she tells) with many other stories of the modern Arab world. From the National Youth Orchestra in Istanbul, to a troupe of actors/storytellers in Cairo, to a lone tapestry artist (amongst many others), Verster’s profoundly secular-humanist work skips back and forth through time and space to weave its own striking tapestry about the modernizing force of art.

Human Rights & Social Justice, Islamic World, Music & Arts, Politics

Canada, France

Duration: 90 mins
Country of Origin: Canada,France, 2015
Nonfiction Features

In recent years, Su Rynard noticed that birds she used to see—grosbeaks, flycatchers, barn swallows—were nowhere to be found. Indeed, songbirds are rapidly disappearing and their absence is a message to us all. Humans share an ageless bond with birds and their songs: in ancient times, we looked to bird’s flight patterns and listened to their melodies to predict the future. Today, the birds once again have something to tell us. "The Messenger hums with the kind of restless energy that’s all too rare for an eco-doc."—POV Magazine

Animals, Environment, VIFF Impact