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theatre

The Waiting Room

(2015, 92 mins, DCP)
In English, Bosnian/ Serbo-Croatian with English subtitles
Director:
CAST Jasmin Geljo, Masa Lizdek, Filip Geljo
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

Aug 19 08:30 pm
Aug 24 06:30 pm

Jasmin, once a successful actor in former Yugoslavia, now lives in Toronto with his second wife and young son. While juggling a construction job and a busy audition schedule, he dreams of re-launching an old televised stage show that made him famous in his homeland. When he is cast in a role that triggers recollections of the civil war, he is forced to reconcile his current reality with memories of his past success.

"Dominated by a unique blend of melancholy and existential crisis, "The Waiting Room" is a poignant character study about the immigrant experience. B+" Eric Kohn, Indiewire

Edge of Winter

(2015, 89 mins, DCP)
Director:
CAST Tom Holland, Joel Kinnaman, Percy Hynes White, Rachelle Lefevre, Rossif Sutherland

Showtimes

Aug 19 06:30 pm
Aug 20 06:15 pm
Aug 23 06:30 pm
Aug 24 08:30 pm
Aug 27 04:30 pm

It’s not easy being a good father to two boys you barely know anymore. A natural screw-up, Elliot (Joel Kinnaman, Suicide Squad) means to do better, but his ex has barely taken off on her vacation when Bradley and Caleb (new Spider-Man Tom Holland and Percy Hynes White) find the shotgun he keeps under his bed. After losing his temper he tries to make up for it by offering to teach them how to shoot. So the three of them drive out into the backwoods for a little target practice and male-bonding. But things take a dramatic turn for the worse (literally) when he encourages Bradley to drive on the way back out. Stuck in a snowdrift in the middle of nowhere, their chances of getting out of his mess alive plummet along with the arctic temperature…

Shrewdly dissecting father-son and sibling tensions, this nailbiting endurance thriller shuttles vividly between interior psychological and external, environmental factors.

In Order of Disappearance

(2014, 116 mins, DCP)
Director:
CAST Stellen Skarsgaard, Bruno Ganz, Kristofer Hivju
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

Aug 26 08:30 pm
Aug 27 06:20 pm
Aug 28 03:30 pm
Aug 29 02:20 pm
Aug 30 04:00 pm
Aug 31 08:20 pm
Sep 01 03:45 pm

Drawing comparisons with the Coen brothers’ Fargo and the more droll of Tarantino’s body-count thrillers, Hans Petter Moland’s (Zero Degrees Kelvin) fourth collaboration with actor Stellan Skarsgård blends black humour (with a heart) and a perfectly constructed plot into a bloody revenge opus that made this a firm festival favourite

Having just won “Citizen of the Year” in his sleepy Norwegian community, unassuming snowplough operator Nils (Skarsgård) has his life and marriage torn apart by the death of his son, supposedly from a heroin overdose. Convinced that his son was not a junkie, he sets out to uncover exactly why the boy died, leading him to the criminal underworld and rival gangs led by "The Count” (Pål Sverre Hagen) and his Serbian nemesis "Papa" (the great Bruno Ganz). Yojimbo-style, Nils begins playing one side off against the other, body by body, until a full-on gang war erupts…

"A rip-roaring revenge tale… While it’s being somewhat reductively billed as an ’action comedy,’ this is actually a much more subtle mix of contrasting tones, shifting fluidly from devastating family tragedy to pitiless violence to sharp observational and social humor, all wrapped up in a vivid sense of place. A very cold place… Moland’s tongue is planted firmly in his cheek, as demonstrated by the death notices that punctuate the action… but there’s a transfixing solemnity underlying the black comedy." David Rooney, Hollywood Reporter

"A delightfully droll tale of bloody revenge." Mark Adams, Screen International

"Funny and nasty in the best traditions of Headhunters and Jackpot, this is the Stellan Skarsgård vengeance thriller we’ve all been waiting for." Owen Williams, Empire

Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse

(2016, 93 mins, DCP)
Director:
Classification: G

Showtimes

Aug 23 02:30 pm

Claude Monet was an avid horticulturist and arguably the most important painter of gardens in the history of art, but he was not alone. Great artists like Van Gogh, Bonnard, Sorolla, Sargent, Pissarro and Matisse all saw the garden as a powerful subject for their art. These great artists, along with many other famous names, feature in an innovative and extensive exhibition from The Cleveland Museum of Art and The Royal Academy, London.

From the exhibition walls to the wonder and beauty of artists’ gardens like Giverny and Seebüll, the film takes a magical and widely travelled journey to discover how different contemporaries of Monet built and cultivated modern gardens to explore expressive motifs, abstract color, decorative design and utopian ideas. Guided by passionate curators, artists and garden enthusiasts, this remarkable collection of Impressionists, Post-Impressionists, and avant-garde artists of the early twentieth century will reveal the rise of the modern garden in popular culture and the public’s enduring facination with gardens today. Long considered spaces for expressing colour, light and atmosphere, the garden has occupied the creative minds of some of the worlds greatest artists. As Monet said, ‘Apart from painting and gardening, I’m no good at anything’. For lovers of art or lovers of gardens, this is an ideal film.

"A thoroughly pleasant feast for the eyes." Andrew Pulver, The Guardian

Renoir: Revered and Reviled

(2015, 87 mins, DCP)
Director:
Classification: G

Showtimes

Aug 09 02:30 pm

Pierre-Auguste Renoir is known and loved for his impressionist paintings of Paris. These paintings count among the world’s favourites. Renoir, however, grew tired of this style and changed course. This stunning film – based on the remarkable collection of 181 Renoirs at the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia – examines the direction he then took and why it provokes such extreme reactions right up to today. Some claim they are repulsed by Renoir’s later works and some claim they are seduced. What may surprise many is that among the many artists who sought Renoir’s new works out and were clearly highly influenced by them were the two giants of the 20th century – Picasso and Matisse. The film is a fresh new biography of this artistic giant but more than that it uncovers a rarely told story that places Renoir as a critical link between the old and the new.

"There’s a lot of insight here and plenty of context, with Renoir’s enduring influence on the next generation – Picasso and Matisse – stressed." The Guardian

"For art fans, this is an easy film to recommend. It’s the next best thing to actually taking a tour through any gallery showcasing Renoir’s work as the film takes us through The Barnes Collection in Philadelphia. The collection is beautiful and viewers are given an up close look at some many of the pieces in the gallery." William Brownridge, TFS

Weiner

(2016, 96 mins, DCP)
Directors:
FEATURING Anthony Weiner, Huma Abedin
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

Aug 12 06:30 pm
Aug 13 08:40 pm
Aug 14 08:20 pm
Aug 15 03:00 pm
Aug 20 04:15 pm
Aug 21 04:20 pm

Anthony Weiner was a young congressman on the cusp of higher office when a sexting scandal forced a humiliating resignation. Just two years later, he ran for mayor of New York City, betting that his ideas would trump his indiscretions. He was wrong.

With unprecedented access to Weiner, his family and his campaign team, Weiner is a thrilling look inside a political comeback-turned-meltdown. What begins as an unexpected surge to the top of the polls takes a sharp turn once Weiner is forced to admit to new sexting allegations. As the media descends and dissects his every move, Weiner desperately tries to forge ahead, but the increasing pressure and crippling 24-hour news coverage halt his political aspirations. With the city of New York as a loud and bustling backdrop, Weiner walks the line between political farce and personal tragedy as it plunges through an increasingly baffling political campaign with unflinching clarity, humor, and pathos.

"An astounding chronicle of hubris." Peter Howell, Toronto Star

"On a thin, slightly soiled dime, "Weiner" pivots from the mother of all comeback stories to an alternately fascinating, mystifying and appalling portrait of the quest for power at its most obsessive and self-destructive." Ann Hornaday, Washington Post

"Mesmerizing." Andrew O’Hehir, Salon

Miss Sharon Jones!

(2015, 93 mins, DCP)
Director:
FEATURING Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings
Classification: 14A

Showtimes

Aug 26 06:30 pm
Aug 27 08:40 pm
Aug 29 04:35 pm
Aug 30 02:10 pm
Aug 31 06:30 pm
Sep 01 06:00 pm
Sep 03 04:50 pm
Sep 04 07:20 pm
Sep 05 06:30 pm

"They said I was too fat, too black, too short and too old," said Sharon Jones. "Well look at me now!"

The "100 Days, 100 Nights" R&B and soul star has been compared to James Brown, Mavis Staples, and a human dynamo. She’s been strutting her stuff for more than 20 years (and before that, working blue collar jobs - she was a corrections officer on Rikers Island), but she only started getting her due in the last five or six years. And then, when she finally seemed to have cracked the big time at the age of 57, Jones was diagnosed with stage II pancreatic cancer. But there is another adjective people used in connection with Sharon Jones: indomitable.

After months of chemo, with a new recording to promote and tour with her band, the Dap-Kings, Jones is determined to get back on the road and prove she’s still got what it takes…

Directed by legendary documentarian Barbara Kopple (Harlan County, USA), Miss Sharon Jones! is part music film, part cancer survival story, and 100% soul.

"Empowering portrait of female strength and resilience." Leslie Felperin, Hollywood Reporter

"Rousing… If ever a movie earned its exclamation point, Miss Sharon Jones! would be it. Defiant, boisterous and possessed of rare performative fire while fronting the Dap-Kings (her Bushwick combo of bearded classic-soul throwbacks), Jones tears a hole in the screen whenever she’s yowling out her pain." Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out New York

"The movie paints a lovely portrait of the people who became Jones’s support group, from the young, white hipsters in her band to an old friend in South Carolina who took her in during her treatment. But the life force of the film is the music, a periodic challenge to keep on keeping on." JR Jones, Chicago Reader

Persepolis

(2007, 95 mins, bluray)
In English
Directors:
CAST (Voices) Chiara Mastroianni, Catherine Deneuve, Sean Penn, Iggy Pop
PROD Marc-Antoine Robert, Xavier Rigault
SCR Marjane Satrapi, Vincent Paronnaud
ED Stéphane Roche
MUS Olivier Bernet
ART DIR Marc Jousset
Classification: 14A

Showtimes

Aug 22 06:30 pm

The Ayatollah Khomeini meets punk rock in this spirited adaptation of Marjane Satrapi’s celebrated graphic novel. When Iran’s Islamic Revolution hits home, nine-year-old Marjane remains determined to discover all that life has to offer.

Co-directed by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud, based on Satrapi’s series of graphic novels, “Persepolis” has some of the blithe, spindly finesse of a New Yorker cartoon, but a cartoon that at any given moment threatens to descend into inky expressionist gloom.

In 1979 Marjane is a nine-year-old Bruce Lee nut in Tehran. The fall of the Shah is cause for celebration in the Satrapi household: Marjane’s family of cosmopolitan Marxists has suffered imprisonment and intimidation. The revolution is a time of hope and opportunity. But it doesn’t last. Religious fundamentalists take control, Marjane and her friends are forced to wear the veil, and social freedoms are curtailed. Worse is to come when Iran goes to war with Iraq.

 

As the 1970s feminist slogan had it, “the personal is political”, but in a theocracy the political is also inescapably personal. The film folds a pocket history of Persia into Marjane’s sentimental education, but in many ways the small domestic details are the most telling, like the way a routine police check sends the whole family into panicky emergency mode in case their illicit booze is discovered.

 

Outspoken and rebellious, the teenage Marjane goes through a punk phase and buys contraband Michael Jackson cassettes on the black market, but she has to talk fast when she’s accosted on the street by hardliners, two women whose billowing chadors make them look like wraiths.

"Persepolis is a superb film about a young girl’s coming of age amidst war, fascism and family tragedy." Peter Howell, Toronto Star

"Moving, perceptive and extremely funny." Philip French, The Observer

"The film’s nuanced view of social issues is complemented by lovely black-and-white animation work that blends Islamic motifs into a sort of Yellow Submarine-ish world." Bob Mondello, NPR

Sour Grapes

(2016, 86 mins, DCP)
Directors:
CAST Laurent Ponsot, Jay McInerney, Jef Levy, Maureen Downey, Rajat Parr, Arthur Sarkissian, Corie Brown, Don Cornwell

Showtimes

Aug 12 08:30 pm
Aug 13 06:30 pm
Aug 14 06:30 pm
Aug 15 01:15 pm
Aug 20 02:30 pm
Aug 23 04:30 pm

Presenting the cream of the crop from this year’s HotDocs Film Festival, VIFF Vancity Theatre is pleased to showcase five of the outstanding documentaries of 2016. Sour Grapes (from Jerry Rothwell, the director of How to Change the World) is one for the connoisseurs, the eye-opening, mouth-watering true crime tale of what happened when oenophilia met high finance in the heady years leading up to the crash of 2008.

Wine snobbery has always been a rich man’s game, but at the turn of the millennium prices at auction houses started to go through the roof. "With pockets full of cash, charisma and a preternatural memory for vintages, a very young Rudy Kurniawan earns the reputation of a wine savant, surrounding himself with some of high society’s most fervent wine connoisseurs. Earning $35 million from the auction of wines from his personal collection, he quickly wins the trust of those in elite wine circles, and is embraced within their community. But when Bill Koch, a top US collector, and, Laurent Ponsot, a Burgundian wine producer, discover suspicious bottles floating through the markets, a suspenseful investigation begins into one of the most ingenious cons of our time." (Heather Haynes)

3-ticket pack available for Best of Hot Docs

"Highly entertaining stranger-than-fiction saga." Dennis Harvey, Variety

"A ripping yarn well-told, about a world of greed, grapes and bleep-you money. Think he Big Snort instead of The Big Short." Brad Wheeler, Globe and Mail

Rumble Fish

(1983, 94 mins, DCP)
Director:
CAST Matt Dillon, Mickey Rourke, Diane Lane, Dennis Hopper, Nicholas Cage, Vincent Spano, Tom Waits

Showtimes

Aug 29 06:30 pm

Francis Coppola’s second take on an SE Hinton teen novel is in a very different register to The Outsiders: it’s an expressionistic, Wellesian urban art film dealing in icons, symbols and a syncopated percussive score by Stewart Copeland of The Police. Matt Dillon and Mickey Rourke star as brothers Rusty James and the Motorcycle Boy respectively, along with a very young Diane Lane and Nicolas Cage (and not forgetting "Domino", aka Sofia Coppola).

"Rumble Fish is Coppola’s professional suicide note to the movie industry, a warning against employing him to find the golden gross. No doubt: this is his most baroque and self-indulgent film. It may also be his bravest." Richard Corliss, Time

"Francis Coppola, bless his theatrical soul, may have the commercial sense of a newt, but he has the heart of a revolutionary, and the talent of a great artist." Jay Scott, Globe and Mail

"Offbeat, daring, and utterly original." Roger Ebert

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