Film Festival Series
Find Your Film
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.
Rarely have classical music feuds been as acrimonious as the clash between creative heavyweights captured in Carmen Cobos’ riveting documentary. Despite his distaste for symphony orchestras, celebrated avant-garde composer Louis Andriessen is coerced into collaborating with Mariss Jansons and Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. Andriessen’s piece is characteristically challenging but also extremely personal, ensuring that the imposition of Jansons’ traditional sensibilities is seen as an affront. Will the world premiere leave their reputations in tatters?
Winter has come and a strange silence has taken up residence. An unseen figure investigates, finding everyone in an uncannily deep sleep.
Lured from Ireland by the American Dream, Eilis (Saoirse Ronan) instead lands in a hardscrabble reality of cramped boarding houses and grungy dancehalls. As homesickness grips her, she’s also torn between two admirers (Domhnall Gleeson and Emory Cohen). With Nick Hornby scripting, John Crowley crafts a stirring 50s-era immigration tale that also serves as an exhilarating profile of female empowerment. "Classily and classically crafted in the best sense."—Hollywood Reporter
Angel Borrego Cubero
When Andorra—that tiny-yet-wealthy principality high in the Pyrenees—decided it needed a fabulous new art gallery to rival Bilbao’s, invitations went out to the world’s top architects. Norman Foster, Zaha Hadid, Frank Gehry, Jean Nouvel and Dominique Perrault were among the heavy-hitters who not only took on the design competition but consented to be part of this warts-and-all film. “A documentary that exposes how ’starchitects’ really work… Compulsive viewing."—Guardian
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
Two base-jumpers discover how far they are willing to go to honour the memory of a close friend.
Fernando León de Aranoa
The absurd, darkly humorous side of war has always been a subject for adventurous filmmakers. Fernando León de Aranoa joins the ranks with this scabrous look at aid workers beset by red tape during the aftermath of the 1990s war in the Balkans. A dead body has been thrown down a well and will soon start poisoning the water supply. It’s up to Benicio del Toro, Tim Robbins, Olga Kurylenko and crew to get it out. Simple, yes? Not really… "A pitch-black war comedy."—Telegraph
Ivano De Matteo
When grainy surveillance video appears to capture a heinous crime committed by their teenage kids, two couples hold a summit at an upscale restaurant and debate what to do next. Based on Herman Koch’s international bestseller—hailed as “chilling, nasty, smart, shocking and unputdownable” by Gone Girl’s Gillian Flynn—Ivano De Matteo’s exquisitely crafted, ravishingly cinematic psychological thriller makes exceptional use of an exemplary cast and upends our expectations at every turn.
Brando De Sica
A trip to Romania is like a trip back in time for a stylish Italian woman, who seems out of place in what has become a poor and impoverished country.
Salvador del Solar
William Faulkner’s adage, "The past is never dead. It’s not even past" is again proved true in actor-turned-director Salvador del Solar’s tense drama. A former soldier in the Peruvian army who now drives a taxi in Lima, Magallanes (Mexican star Damián Alcázar) has his world turned upside down when Celina (The Milk of Sorrow’s Magaly Solier), a woman from his violent past, gets into his cab and asks for his help. Can Magallanes find redemption and help Celina in the bargain?
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
Do pollinating bees have a market value? Can we put a price on the Amazon Rainforest? These are not hypothetical questions, as Denis Delestrac and Sandrine Feydal’s clear-eyed and rigorously researched investigation shows. Under the guise of protecting nature, banks and multinationals—with the blessing of the UN, Europe and many NGOs—are mounting new financial markets that exploit "environmental protection" as a moneymaking enterprise. This occasionally chilling documentary makes explicit just how the financial world does indeed see nature as the new Eldorado…
Sina Ataeian Dena
A fascinating and effective mix of documentary and fiction techniques, shot "guerrilla style" (without permission) on the streets of Tehran, Sina Ataeian Dena’s feminist drama focuses on 25-year-old unmarried teacher Hanieh (newcomer Dorna Dibaj) as she doggedly pursues a promotion while facing casual sexism at every turn. "A sensitive, topical debut [that is] quietly affecting… The ’candid camera’ approach adds a welcome edge of verisimilitude…"—Hollywood Reporter
Sophie Deraspe’s investigative documentary is the latest reminder to be skeptical of everyone you encounter online. Deraspe tells the cautionary tale of the infamous Gay Girl in Damascus Internet hoax. A blog that purported to be a boots-on-the-ground look at life as an out lesbian in fractious Syria turned out to be something else entirely. "What begins as an account of an online affair gradually morphs into a commentary on identity in the Information Age. [A] slippery, deftly woven narrative…"—Variety
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
Nine animated black-and-white screens show Chinese (or are they non-Chinese) utopias? Or are they dystopias? (SK)
Done Four Productions
Think Pan’s Labyrinth meets Carnivale and you’ll still be unprepared for this astonishing debut from Done Four Productions and director Nicholas Humphries. In this Dust Bowl-era reimagining of The Little Mermaid, an amphibious siren (Katelyn Mager) falls prey to a nefarious benefactor (Game of Thrones’ Iwan Rheon) and ends up in a magical turf war. Sumptuous production design and sinister storytelling conjure a seductive fantasy world.
Ten years ago, Mark Dornford-May and the Isango Ensemble burst upon the scene with Berlin Golden Bear-winner U-Carmen eKhayelitsha, their stirring adaptation of Bizet’s Carmen. Drawing once again from an operatic source—Puccini’s La bohème—Dornford-May and team bring the Xhosa language, exceptional singing voices and traditional instrumentation to a Cape Town-set tragedy focusing on the doomed love of university student Lungelo (Mhlekazi Mosiea) for the tuberculosis-stricken Mimi (Busisiwe Ngejane).
Even if the name means nothing to you, the Roland TR-808 drum machine has played a role in your life. The machine’s dirty bass was the signature sound of the early days of hip-hop and the basis for modern EDM. But don’t take our word for it—Alexander Dunn’s diverse film features testimony from Damon Albarn, Arthur Baker, Afrika Bambaataa, Diplo, Fatboy Slim, Chris Frantz of Talking Heads, Goldie, Rick Rubin, Bernard Sumner, Phil Collins, Pharrell Williams and others. "A must-see."—Rolling Stone. Dedicated to our dear, departed friend, Peter Culley.