VIFC

theatre

Path Alias: 
theatre

Bell Media Best of Hot Docs: Unlocking the Cage

(2015, 92 mins, DCP)
Directors:

Showtimes

Jul 09 06:00 pm

 Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY A BEST OF HOT DOCS 3 TICKET PACK

By what right do humans lord it over the animals? Traditionally, it was a gift from God, of course. But if Science is now in the ascendent, does animal consciousness rewrite the ethics book when it comes to the way we treat primates, for instance? Documentary veterans Chris Hegadus and DA Pennebaker cover the fascinating story of lawyer Steven Wise, who is petitioning the courts to extend human rights to cognitively complex creatures likes chimpanzees, elephants, dolphins and whales. After all, if the Supreme Court believes corporations are persons before the law, shouldn’t our genetic ancestors enjoy a superior claim? It may sound outlandish, but as the film shows, society may be on the brink of a monumental cultural shift…

"A compelling and noble tale." Globe and Mail

"Part courtroom drama, part rumination on what separates human beings from other animals, the film is above all a sympathetic portrait of an advocate." AO Scott, New York Times

"A suspenseful and compelling courtroom drama… Simply put, Unlocking the Cage tells a great story." Anthony Kaufman, Screen International

Bell Media Best of Hot Docs: Tickled

(2016, 92 mins, DCP)
Directors:
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

Jul 10 08:40 pm

 Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY A BEST OF HOT DOCS 3 TICKET PACK

Watching Tickled is best when no one tells you what’s going to happen, or what it’s about, other than this: journalist David Farrier happens to find a strange video online for a sport called "competitive endurance tickling." When he tries to contact the person responsible for posting the video to do a short news story, the response comes laced with such vitriol that he’s compelled to dig deeper to discover what would spark such a reaction. What he finds is bigger and more bizarre than anything you’re likely to imagine. Launched into an increasingly complicated series of stories and situations, Farrier crafts a compelling investigation into a truly peculiar phenomenon that becomes both disturbing and dangerous, guiding the audience deftly through an experience they won’t be able to forget.

"Fascinating and disturbing." 4/5 Norman Wilner, Now

"A fascinating detective story that comes highly recommended." NZ Herald

Guest: Skype Q&A 

Bell Media Best of Hot Docs: Spaceship Earth

(2016, 122 mins)
In English, Japanese, German with English subtitles
Director:

Showtimes

Jul 10 06:00 pm

 Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY A BEST OF HOT DOCS 3 TICKET PACK

Though the concept of planet Earth as a ship pre-dates space travel, it wasn’t until Apollo astronauts photographed "Earth rise" that the metaphor of Spaceship Earth—a term championed by futurist Buckminster Fuller in the 1960s—really captured the collective imagination. The idea of Earth as a finite entity hurling through a seemingly infinite and empty universe became a clarion call for sustainability and cooperation. But what does that really mean? Award-winning doc auteur Kevin McMahon travels across the globe to unpack what scientists have discovered about humanity’s impact on the planet. Consulting some of the world’s most prominent thinkers, including physicists, astronauts, anthropologists and geologists, Spaceship Earth is a beautiful, poetic film that offers insight and inspiration into how to change the hearts and minds of every person on this planet—a necessity if humans are to survive on the only vessel capable of sustaining us. Lynne Fernie

Guest: Skype Q&A with Director Kevin McMahon

Bell Media Best of Hot Docs: 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

Jul 08 06:30 pm

 Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY A BEST OF HOT DOCS 3 TICKET PACK

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)

"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 the Big Snort instead of The Big Short." Brad Wheeler, Globe and Mail

Guest:  Brad Goldstein and executive producer Nick Ware 

Bell Media Best of Hot Docs: Lo and Behold: Reveries of the Connected World

(2016, 98 mins, DCP)
Director:

Showtimes

Jul 09 08:20 pm

 Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY A BEST OF HOT DOCS 3 TICKET PACK

Society depends on the Internet for nearly everything but rarely do we step back and recognize its endless intricacies and unsettling omnipotence. From the brilliant mind of Werner Herzog comes a playful yet chilling examination of our rapidly interconnecting lives. Herzog captures interviews with a treasure trove of strange and beguiling individuals—from Internet pioneers to victims of wireless radiation—whose anecdotes and reflections weave together a complex portrait of our brave new world. The Internet may be, as Herzog states, "one of the biggest revolutions we as humans are experiencing," but he tempers this enthusiasm with tragic stories from victims of online harassment and Internet addiction, wrestling with profound questions about the future of the Internet—and humanity. Is this digitally dominated age humankind’s salvation or a high-speed pipeline to our demise? Shane Smith

3-ticket pack available

"Expansive and ambitious." The Guardian

"Suggesting that modern cinema’s most prescient work may yet turn out to be The Terminator, Werner Herzog’s Lo and Behold: Reveries of the Connected World takes a simultaneously curious, awe-struck, and terrified look at the origins and future of the web and the interconnected reality it’s begat." Nick Schager, The Playlist

"Modestly profound and consistently fascinating." Tim Grierson, Screen International

Obsession

(1976, 98 mins, DCP)
Director:
CAST Cliff Robertson, Geneviève Bujold, John Lithgow
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

Jul 03 07:00 pm
Jul 05 04:00 pm

Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY THE DE PALMA SERIES 3 TICKET PACK

Not yet ensconsed as "the greatest film ever made", by the mid 1970s Hitchcock’s Vertigo was an underground film, it had been out of circulation for years - which only enhanced its lustre for young acolytes like De Palma and Paul Schrader, who’s screenplay for Obsession (originally: Deja-vu) is an explicit reworking of Hitchcock’s masterpiece (with bits and pieces from Rebecca, Dial M for Murder and Notorious thrown in).

Fifteen years after the love of his life was killed through his own failings, businessman Cliff Robertson meets a young woman who appears to be his dead wife’s doppelganger - and has a second chance to prove his love.

Initially dismissed as a mere stylistic copy, almost faux-Hitchcock, Obsession is now understood as a "conversation" with Vertigo, reframing and in some aspects refining the original’s thesis about the nexus of money, power, and desire.

"Exquisite entertainment… The film also throws into high melodramatic relief certain recognizable human truths: the shock of sudden loss, the panic of the effort to recoup, the mourning and guilt that blind the protagonist to a multitude of suspicious signs as he seeks expiation and a chance to relive his life. In a sense, the movie offers viewers the opportunity to do the same thing—by going back to a more romantic era of the cinema and the simple, touching pleasures denied the audience by the current antiromantic spirit of the movies." Richard Schickel, Time

Scarface

(1983, 170 mins, DCP)
Director:
CAST Al Pacino, Michelle Pfeiffer, Steven Bauer
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

Jul 16 09:45 pm

Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY THE DE PALMA SERIES 3 TICKET PACK

"The World Is Yours." Half a century after Howard Hawks and Ben Hecht delivered their brutal critique of the American Dream as personified by Al Capone in 1932’s Scarface, De Palma and screenwriter Oliver Stone found the Dream alive and kicking in Miami. Cuban hoodlum Tony Montana (Al Pacino) sees the fast track to success lies in cocaine, murder and pure ambition. ("My revenge on cocaine," ex-addict Oliver Stone called it.)

Though only a modest success on its initial release, Scarface became one of the most iconic and defining movies of its era, a film about capitalism running amok, insatiable avarice and moral bankruptcy.

"A lot of fun… What’s most impressive is [Oliver] Stone and De Palma’s unwillingness to cloak Tony’s grotesque, voracious machine-gun capitalism with any sort of ‘Godfather’-style guff about honour and family: Scarface is an unashamed study of selfish, sadistic criminality, and all the better for it." Tom Huddlestone, Time Out

Sisters

(1973, 93 mins, Blu-ray Disc)
Director:
CAST Margot Kidder, Jennifer Salt, Charles Durning, William Finley
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

Jul 02 10:30 pm

Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY THE DE PALMA SERIES 3 TICKET PACK

A young reporter (Jennifer Salt) witnesses a murder from afar, but cannot prove it. The truth is even more grim than she imagines… After channelling the new wave in his first independent films (Hi Mom and Greetings) De Palma turned to a different model, Alfred Hitchcock, for what proved to be his commercial breakthrough. Sisters has a grand guignol conceit about Siamese twins, but it’s not really a horror movie - rather it’s a witty mystery suspense thriller drawing directly from Rear Window (an eye witness to a murder tries to prove what she saw), Psycho (slasher bloodletting and multiple personality disorder) and Vertigo (obsession). He even persuaded Hitchcock’s favourite composer, Bernard Herrmann, to come out of retirement to score the film.

Ironically through this filter of pastiche De Palma was able to find his own voice as a filmmaker, inspired by Hitchcock’s cinematic vocabulary but developing his own inimitable visual lexicon, which even at this early stage includes extraordinarily adept use of split screen, lengthy travelling shots, and an operatic "Eye of God" storytelling sense - or if you prefer, a deeply twisted sense of humour. Made for cheap, the film was a box office and critical success, and reset the course for De Palma’s career.

"De Palma’s finest achievement prior to Blow Out and one of the great American films of the 1970s…." Robin Wood, Hollywood from Vietnam to Reagan…and Beyond

"Arguably De Palma’s best, most entertaining film. It contains enough inspired wickedness and lunacy that it would have made even Hitchcock jealous. But for all its prankishness, the film remains a telling exploration of duality, identity, and obsession—themes that De Palma would recycle time and again, but rarely with such wit or intelligence." Derek Hill, Images Journal

The Phantom of the Paradise

(1974, 92 mins, Blu-ray Disc)
Director:
CAST Paul Williams, William Finley, Jessica Harper, Gerrit Graham
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

Jul 08 09:00 pm

Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY THE DE PALMA SERIES 3 TICKET PACK

De Palma’s delirious mash-up of Phantom of the Opera, Faust, The Picture of Dorian Gray, and 70s glam-rock is the musical/horror/comedy freak-out that Rocky Horror wanted to be. His rock opera stolen by Machiavellian record producer Swan and his face disfigured when it lands in a record press, songwriter Winslow Leach (De Palma favorite Finley) dons a silver mask and vows to spread terror through the duplicitous Swan’s rock palace The Paradise. De Palma expertly employs his full bag of tracks, including marvelous camerawork and split screens, in “arguably [his] finest film.” (Time Out) Though it opened and closed with little fanfare (except for its bizarre success in Winnipeg), the film has gone on to become a midnight movie classic.

"William Finley gets the role of his career as Winslow Leach, the songwriter whose masterwork, a "rock cantata" retelling of the Faust legend, is stolen by Swan (Paul Williams), the unscrupulous owner of Death Records. Framed and ruined, Winslow gets his face sizzled off in a smoldering record press, then dons leather suit, cape, and metallic mask to haunt the Paradise, Swan’s elaborate rock venue, as the Phantom. De Palma understands the intensity of ’70s rock as the successor to opera’s shuddering arias, and the fervent charge of music electrifies the visuals." —Fernando F Croce, Slant

The Untouchables

(1987, 119 mins)
Director:
CAST Kevin Costner, Robert De Niro, Sean Connery, Charles Martin Smith, Andy Garcia
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

Jul 10 03:30 pm

Save by purchasing a 3 ticket pack for only $30.

BUY THE DE PALMA SERIES 3 TICKET PACK

Treasury agent Eliot Ness (Costner) enlists Irish beat cop Jimmy Malone (Sean Connery) to school him in “the Chicago Way” so he can catch Capone, and enlists the help of two more “untouchables” (incorruptibles): George Stone (Andy Garcia), a hotheaded police cadet hoping to give Italian Americans a good name, and Oscar Wallace (Charles Martin Smith), the geeky-chic accountant who cracks the case, by nailing Capone for income tax evasion.

With a screenplay by David Mamet and a magnificenct cast De Palma enjoyed one of his biggest hits with this oppulent, larger than life rendering of the Capone story. Ennio Morricone’s score certainly doesn’t hurt either. De Palma brought inflections from Westens to the film’s white hat/black hat morality, and borrowed from Eisenstein’s Odessa Steps sequence to beef up a shoot out set piece. It’s one of this most straightforward movies, but a hoot all the same.

"It goes to that place that all films aspiring to greatness must attain: the country of myth, where all the figures must be larger and more vivid than life." Richard Schickel, Time

Pages