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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.
Egypt, France, Jordan, Netherlands, South Africa
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.
A filmmaker (played by director Bertrand Bonello) in search of the definitive image of "the monstrous" forms the backbone of Antoine Barraud’s fascinating mélange, one part drama, one part art history lesson, one part homage to past cinematic masters Buñuel and Hitchcock. Jeanne Balibar and Géraldine Pailhaus (playing the same art historian) accompany our intrepid director through a tour of some of Paris’ most quixotic museums. The effect is "spellbinding."—ArtForum
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
Luc Jacquet (the Oscar-winning March of the Penguins) returns to the Antarctic to trace the fascinating life and groundbreaking work of French glaciologist Claude Lorius, now 83. Lorius discovered that, by drilling into ice and extracting cores from enormous depths, effectively travelling back through time, one could show the link between man-made greenhouse gases and climate change… "Jacquet’s film is… a call to arms to the environmental movement destabilised and buffeted by the denial industry… A powerful testament, and one that ought to have a considerable impact."—Guardian
Two of France’s greatest young stars—Tahar Rahim (A Prophet) and Adèle Exarchopoulos (Blue Is the Warmest Colour)—are at the centre of Elie Wajeman’s exhilarating drama. A cop (Rahim) in Belle Époque Paris insinuates himself into an anarchist cell, only to find his loyalty wavering when he falls for the sensual Judith (Exarchopoulos)… "A vastly entertaining police-infiltration thriller that uses fin-de-siècle radicalism as an exquisitely atmospheric backdrop…"—Guardian
Every time Vincent dives into a lake, the introvert transforms into something uncanny, leaping like a dolphin and brandishing superhuman strength. If there were a villain to vanquish, he’d be a superhero. Instead, he’s left to wrestle with the very relatable fear of falling victim to persecution. “So persuasively does debut director-actor Thomas Salvador immerse the viewer in his imaginative world that it seduces entirely, in a silent comedy kind of way…”—Hollywood Reporter
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
What makes Angus Angus? What makes Kobe Kobe? Who’s got the world’s best beef? What’s the best way to cook it? Can we feel less guilty about consuming so much of it? What’s in the cow’s best interest? Are our interests, the cattle’s and the planet’s sustainability absolutely irreconcilable? We have the questions and Franck Ribière’s Steak (R)evolution has the revealing answers, including how the most humane raising of livestock results in the most delectable steak. "Vegetarians beware—this mouthwatering documentary may just about convert you.”—Hollywood Reporter
Documentarian David André follows five teenagers from depressed Boulogne-sur-Mer throughout their final year at school, with the life-determining "baccalauréat" exams awaiting them at the end. Their lives, dreams and ambitions are captured in poetic visuals, in songs that the teenagers themselves provide, and in a captivating mélange of anger, humour, frustration and boredom…"Glee meets To Be and To Have… A touching film, [this] hybrid French docudrama-musical comedy… deserves extra credit for trying to pull off something new."—Hollywood Reporter
Alix Delaporte’s quietly affecting drama gives us 14-year-old Victor (a captivating Romain Paul) who lives in a trailer outside Montpellier with his very ill mother (Clotilde Hesme). Preparing him for life after she’s gone, she puts him in touch with the father he’s never known—an imposing orchestra conductor who’s just arrived in town to perform Mahler’s Sixth Symphony… "An intimate drama in which words play second fiddle to situations and images."—Hollywood Reporter
Tim Roth delivers an understated performance as a hospice nurse whose selfless devotion to the terminally ill sometimes distorts into more inscrutable behaviour in Michel Franco’s deft character study. Recalling Michael Haneke’s Amour in its unsentimental depiction of life’s closing chapters, this mesmerizing psychological drama also examines the heavy toll exacted on this caregiver who’s at ease with impending death but at a loss with life. “A captivating work.”—Screen
Male narcissism and infidelity are analyzed in veteran Philippe Garrel’s gorgeously shot (in 35mm!) B&W drama about a married documentary filmmaker (Stanislas Merhar) who falls for a younger woman… "The currents of desire, jealousy and resentment that flow through a relationship over time receive an exquisite close-up from director Garrel in [this] tightly focused romantic drama that exudes… the lucid craftsmanship of a filmmaker in full command of the medium."—Variety
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
France, Norway, Denmark, France, Denmark
When a war photographer (Isabelle Huppert) dies on assignment, her husband (Gabriel Byrne) struggles to mount a retrospective while dealing with his grieving sons (Jesse Eisenberg, Devin Druid) and her combative colleague (David Strathairn). Joachim Trier (Oslo, 31st August) poses tough questions about family, marital responsibility and balancing one’s calling and kin. “A smart, measured tale steeped in understatement and complimented by first-rate performances…”—Indiewire
France, Poland, Romania
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
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
France, Germany, Netherlands
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
As Freudians will guess from the title, Phan’s stunning film has a lot to do with patriarchy and the penis. When Vietnam’s government offered cash incentives to fathers to undergo vasectomies, they didn’t expect that unmarried, fun-loving kids would sign up, just for pocket money. Student slacker Vu resists his father’s order to get married, but down which deviant paths will life take him? Tony Rayns
France, Lithuania, Netherlands
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.
At the foot of a Guatemalan volcano, 17-year-old Maria (a transfixing María Mercedes Coroy) and her parents scratch out a living by working on a coffee plantation. Promised to the plantation’s overseer, Maria, instead, falls for a youth her own age… First-time director Jayro Bustamante has fashioned "a transporting, hypnotically beautiful debut feature… downright Herzogian… in its surfeit of physical detail, observed ritual and looming clash of civilizations."—Variety