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Galas & Special Presentations

The year’s most anticipated films.

Corsage
Corsage film image, director Marie Kreutzer

Corsage

Award Winners Comedy Drama Women Directors

Marie Kreutzer’s biopic takes us to the late 19th century, when Empress Elisabeth of Austria has been politically sidelined. Imagining her as a proto-feminist rebel, Kreutzer is not afraid to depart from the historical record to do so.

Centre for Performing Arts

EO

Award Winners Drama

Veteran director Jerzy Skolimowski returns in triumphant form with this tale of animal life. Sometimes harsh, sometimes sweet, always beautiful, EO tells the story of a donkey and its journey through a world dominated by humans.

Vancouver Playhouse Centre for Performing Arts
One Fine Morning
One Fine Morning film image, director Mia Hansen-Løve

One Fine Morning

Drama Women Directors

A single mother working to support her young daughter and her ailing father, navigates the labyrinthine system of care homes, with their financial and logistical burdens. Then, an encounter with an old friend blossoms into a passionate affair.

Centre for Performing Arts
Stars at Noon
Stars At Noon film image, director Claire Denis

Stars at Noon

Action & Suspense Award Winners Drama Romance Women Directors

In Claire Denis's Cannes Jury prize winner, a US journalist is marooned in Managua, stripped of her passport and forced to trade sex for protection. An English businessman seems a good prospect, but gradually she sees he's in more trouble than she is.

Vancouver Playhouse Centre for Performing Arts
Bones of Crows
Bones of Crows film image, director Marie Clements

Bones of Crows

Human Rights & Social Justice Women Directors

Vancouver-born Dene/Métis writer-director Marie Clements lays out a hard history of Indigenous resilience in this urgent, harrowing epic, spanning most of the 20th century; the story of a Cree woman from childhood, through residential school, WWII, and beyond.

Centre for Performing Arts
Broker
Broker film image, director Hirokazu Kore-eda

Broker

Award Winners Comedy Drama

Shoplifters director Kore-eda fashions a sprawling, compassionate crime story set in South Korea about a half-baked baby adoption scam led by Song Kang-ho (Parasite; The Host). Winner of Best Actor at Cannes Film Festival.

Centre for Performing Arts
Decision to Leave
Decision to Leave film image, director Park Chan-wook

Decision to Leave

Action & Suspense Award Winners Drama Romance

Virtuoso Korean filmmaker Park Chan-wook (The Handmaiden; Oldboy) picked up the Best Director Prize at Cannes for this teasing, tantalizing genre piece, a neo-noir mystery about a homicide detective who falls in love with the widow of an apparent suicide.

Centre for Performing Arts

The Grizzlie Truth

Documentary Women Directors

Kathleen S. Jayme (Finding Big Country) is out to solve a true sports crime: who robbed us of the Vancouver Grizzlies? Jayme revisits the short history of those bad luck bears, connecting the dots and reconnecting with the Grizzlies heroes and villains.

Centre for Performing Arts
The Son
The Son film image, director Florian Zeller, starring Hugh Jackman, Laura Dern, and Anthony Hopkins

The Son

Drama

Teenager Nicolas is suffering from severe depression. It's so bad, his mom (Laura Dern) hands him over to his father, Peter (Hugh Jackman), who is celebrating a baby with his new wife, Beth. Like The Father, this is sharp, insightful, devastating.

Centre for Performing Arts

Triangle of Sadness

Award Winners Comedy Drama

A luxury cruise for the super rich goes very, very wrong in this Cannes-winning social satire from the director of The Square. Uproariously funny at times and deeply cynical, this is a must-see.

Centre for Performing Arts
The Whale
The Whale film image, director Darren Aronofsky, actor Brendan Fraser

The Whale

Art, Music & Photography Drama LGBTQIA2S+

Charlie (Brendan Fraser) may finally realize his wish of eating himself to death. First, he reaches out to the teenage daughter he hasn't seen in 10 years. This compassionate chamber piece is a change of pace from Black Swan director Darren Aronofsky.

Centre for Performing Arts
Women Talking
Women Talking film image, director Sarah Polley, starring Rooney Mara and Claire Foy

Women Talking

Award Winners Drama Women Directors

Sarah Polley's adaptation of Miriam Toews' novel is the most compelling movie to come out the #MeToo movement to date, with stellar performances from Jessie Buckley, Rooney Mara, and Frances McDormand as Mennonite women confronting a terrible truth.

Centre for Performing Arts

The Banshees of Inisherin

Award Winners Drama

When Colm (Brendan Gleeson) decides he's had enough of his best pal (Colin Farrell) because he's just too boring, the entire village is consumed in the drama in this contemplative and uproarious comedy from Martin McDonagh (In Bruges; Three Billboards).

Centre for Performing Arts

Empire of Light

Drama Romance

Olivia Colman shines as an unhappy woman rediscovering romance with a young Black man in the English seaside cinema where they both work in this classy, transformative valentine to the movies from 1917 director Sam Mendes.

Centre for Performing Arts

Showcase

A selection of exceptional cinema.

Before, Now & Then

Award Winners Drama Romance Women Directors

Dreamlike, sensual, and intensely lyrical, Kamila Andini’s Indonesian 1960s period drama is a rare glimpse into the emotional life of a woman who escapes war and enters into the pampered existence of a passionless marriage.

Vancouver Playhouse SFU Woodwards

Boy From Heaven

Action & Suspense Award Winners Drama

Adam, a young man studying at a leading religious institution in Egypt, becomes a pawn in the struggle between government spies and radical religious leaders. A shrewdly plotted thriller with a superbly expressive performance from Tawfeek Barhom.

SFU Woodwards Vancouver Playhouse
Nostalgia
Nostalgia film image, director Mario Martone

Nostalgia

Returning to the Naples of his childhood, Felice (Pierfrancesco Favino) is overwhelmed by memories of his adolescence both joyful and painful. He is compelled to stay to try to make peace with his best friend from those days, now a feared crime boss.

SFU Woodwards Vancouver Playhouse
Alcarràs
Alcarràs film image, director Carla Simón

Alcarràs

Award Winners Drama Women Directors

Steeped in the warmth of summer and the sweetness of peaches, Alcarràs tells the tale of a family in Catalonia suddenly faced with eviction from the land they’ve farmed for generations. A bittersweet tale of love and family in a last idyllic summer.

SFU Woodwards Vancouver Playhouse
Black Ice
Black Ice film image, director Hubert Davis

Black Ice

Award Winners Documentary

This sweeping dissection of systemic racism in Canadian hockey culture documents the personal stories of Black hockey players dealing with racism from fans, coaches, other players, and the institutional pressure to remain silent about their mistreatment.

Vancouver Playhouse International Village 9
Brother
Brother film image, director Clement Virgo, based on the novel by David Chariandy

Brother

Drama

Against the backdrop of suburban Scarborough, two brothers strive to justify their mother’s sacrifices and realise their own ambitions. However, fate has other plans. An elegant and authoritative exploration of both violence and the healing process.

Vancouver Playhouse The Rio Theatre

Call Jane

Drama Human Rights & Social Justice Women Directors

A privileged housewife in 1968 Chicago finds herself at odds with the patriarchal medical establishment when she requires an abortion to save her life. A timely and relevant film about reproductive justice in the year that Roe v. Wade was overturned.

The Rio Theatre Vancouver Playhouse
Close
Close film image, director Lukas Dhont

Close

Award Winners Drama LGBTQIA2S+

Léo and Rémi's summertime adolescent friendship is scrutinized by their classmates, making Léo pull away in self-conscious fear. A stunningly lyrical tour de force that explores that explores the fragile nature of friendship and masculinity.

SFU Woodwards Vancouver Playhouse

Crystal Pite: Angels' Atlas

Documentary Women Directors

This sublime documentary captures the National Ballet of Canada's rebirth through their staging of Angels' Atlas—their final show before the pandemic shutdown in 2020 and their first performance when the company returned in November 2021.

Vancouver Playhouse International Village 9
Emily
Emily film image, director Frances O'Connor

Emily

Drama Romance Women Directors

In her impressive directorial debut, Frances O'Connor plausibly imagines how a shy, demure preacher's daughter (played by the sensational Emma Mackey) might come to write something as bold and primal as Wuthering Heights.

Vancouver Playhouse SFU Woodwards
Holy Spider
Holy Spider film image, director Ali Abbasi

Holy Spider

Award Winners Drama Human Rights & Social Justice

In Mashhad, Iran, a serial killer known as The Spider has murdered over a dozen women. Rahimi, a journalist obsessed with finding the killer, soon finds a skewed social morality that praises the perpetrator and condemns his victims.

Vancouver Playhouse SFU Woodwards

Klondike

Award Winners Drama Human Rights & Social Justice Women Directors

In 2014 in Ukraine's Donbass region, Irka, who's seven months pregnant, and her partner Tolik face the dilemma of whether or not to flee the area. As the tense, haunting, and tragic film unfolds, the conflict threatens to tear them apart.

Vancouver Playhouse International Village 9

Motherhood

Drama

Ryuichi Hiroki’s film tells the story of a woman who loves her mother but can’t muster the same feelings for her daughter. Shot through with the spirit of Greek tragedy, Hiroki creates a rich atmosphere of psychological danger.

Vancouver Playhouse The Cinematheque
Pacifiction
Pacifiction, director Albert Serra

Pacifiction

Drama LGBTQIA2S+

De Roller, the High Commissioner of French Polynesia, has a problem on his hands: the French Marines have arrived on the islands, and their presence coincides with rumours that nuclear testing is soon to commence. A lush and moody delight.

International Village 9 Vancouver Playhouse

Peter Von Kant

Drama LGBTQIA2S+ Romance

This gender-reversed take on Fassbinder's The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant sees director Peter suffer the ultimate heartbreak when his young lover dumps him. Features scene-stealing turns from Stéfan Crépon, Hannah Schygulla, and Isabelle Adjani.

SFU Woodwards
R.M.N.
R.M.N. film image, director Cristian Mungiu

R.M.N.

Drama

Director Cristian Mungiu takes the bull by the horns in this gripping smalltown drama which confronts xenophobia, globalization, and economic injustice head on. Matthias returns home to Transylvania to find the community up in arms.

Vancouver Playhouse SFU Woodwards
Tori and Lokita
Tori and Lokita film image, co-directors Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne

Tori and Lokita

Award Winners Drama Human Rights & Social Justice

In the latest from the Dardenne brothers (Two Days, One Night) we are invested in the plight of two West African immigrants to Europe, children who pass themselves off as siblings but whose fate hangs by a slender thread. The movie pummels the heart.

International Village 10

Viking

Award Winners Comedy Drama

When the first manned mission to Mars hits turbulence due to personality clashes amongst the crew, the higher-ups devise a bizarre solution involving a simulacrum and surrogates. As the deadpan absurdity escalates, Viking mines poignancy from folly.

Vancouver Playhouse International Village 9

Panorama

Narratives from every corner of the globe.

Carajita

Award Winners Drama Women Directors

In the Dominican Republic, Yarisa works as a maid and a nanny for a wealthy, powerful family. When she suffers a personal tragedy, she must re-evaluate the last two decades of her life and her relationship with the family to whom she has given so much.

The Cinematheque

Dos estaciones

Award Winners Drama LGBTQIA2S+

Steely and determined tequila factory owner María Garcia (played by Teresa Sánchez) fights an uphill battle against nature, chance, and the impending global takeover of the local economy in Juan Pablo González' first narrative feature.

International Village 10

Field of Blood

Drama

A grieving writer is visited by the troubled protagonist of her novel, who has come to life to torment her. In her novel, the protagonist awaits trial for a serious crime, and the circumstances leading up to it are gradually revealed.

International Village 8 International Village 9

Falcon Lake

Drama Women Directors

When their families get together for a summer vacation, Bastien, a shy teenage boy, finds himself captivated by Chloé, a slightly older girl. But as they grow closer, lines of emotional and physical intimacy get blurred, and heartache ensues.

The Rio Theatre

The Beasts

Action & Suspense Award Winners Drama

In this thriller about a French couple starting a new life in rural Galicia, Spain, director Rodrigo Sorogoyen presents the feral underbelly of country life where tensions between foreigners and locals, educated and uneducated, brutally come to the fore.

International Village 9 VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre
The Blue Caftan
The Blue Caftan film image, director Maryam Touzani

The Blue Caftan

Award Winners Drama LGBTQIA2S+ Women Directors

Richly erotic and deeply moving, Maryam Touzani’s queer-themed film takes us to urban Morocco and into the lives of three beautiful souls. Halim is a master tailor; Mina is his loyal wife; Youssef is the man who slowly comes between them.

International Village 10

Fogaréu

Action & Suspense Drama LGBTQIA2S+ Women Directors

Fernanda returns to her hometown of Goiás, Brazil, to scatter her adoptive mother's ashes and to learn the truth about her origins. In scenes infused with magical realism, she learns her disturbing family history and the limits of her strength.

International Village 10
The Forger
The Forger film image, director Maggie Peren

The Forger

Action & Suspense Drama Human Rights & Social Justice Women Directors

Based on a true story, Cioma Schönhaus, a young Jewish man living in 1942 Berlin, forges passports for Jewish people to escape the country. Instead of hiding, he impersonates military personnel so he can live life, risking discovery by the Gestapo.

International Village 9

Joyland

Award Winners Drama LGBTQIA2S+

Unemployed and emasculated in the shadow of his father and older brother, Haider accepts a job at a theatre as a backup dancer for Biba, a trans woman trying to succeed as an erotic dancer, hiding the truth from his family as he begins an affair with her.

International Village 10

Karaoke

Award Winners Comedy Drama

A flashy new neighbour transforms the life of aging couple Meir and Tova, initially in ways that promise renewal, in this sharp Israeli comedy of manners, the Audience Award winner at the Jerusalem Film Festival. Sasson Gabay (The Band's Visit) stars.

International Village 10

Leonora addio

Award Winners Drama Experimental & Avant Garde

Veering away from the standard biopic, Paolo Taviani's latest film follows the ashes of celebrated Italian writer Luigi Pirandello on their journey back to Sicily, then ends with a blunt adaptation of one of his short stories.

International Village 8 International Village 9

Like a Fish on the Moon

Drama Women Directors

When their seemingly happy four-year-old son stops talking, Haleh and Amir consult a series of experts, but it's not long before their own relationship begins to suffer. This superbly acted, spare, empathetic film is completely transfixing.

International Village 8 The Cinematheque
A Matter of Trust
A Matter of Trust film image, director Annette K Olesen

A Matter of Trust

Women Directors

In one summer afternoon in Denmark, lives are irrevocably changed. A Matter of Trust features five unrelated stories which are seamlessly woven as characters discover trust and mistrust between strangers and those with whom they are closest.

International Village 9

Mediterranean Fever

Award Winners Comedy Drama Women Directors

Waleed struggles with depression, married life, and writer’s block. Upon learning that his cocky new neighbour Jalal is indebted to some dangerous men, he starts tagging along for Jalal’s shake-downs, ostensibly as research for a crime novel.

International Village 9

Nanny

Award Winners Drama Women Directors

Already enduring microaggressions and inept attempts at wokeness from her Manhattan employers, a Senegalese immigrant must also contend with supernatural figures manifesting in both her dreams and waking world. A haunting tale of immigration's realities.

The Rio Theatre SFU Woodwards
Nayola
Nayola film image, director José Miguel Ribeiro

Nayola

Animation Drama Human Rights & Social Justice

Yara, a politically censored rap artist in Angola, is on the run from the police. An encounter with an intruder brings the scars of the past into stark relief. Dreams, reality, myth, past, and present fluidly intertwine in this stunning animated feature.

International Village 9

The Novelist's Film

Award Winners Drama

Novelist Junhee is taking a break from writing, going on a daytrip to a small town where her encounters with friends, both old and new, causes her to reconsider an idea she has been mulling over: what if she were to write and direct her own film?

International Village 9

Once Upon a Time in Calcutta

Award Winners Drama

Aditya Vikram Sengupta explores the depths and vagaries of the human condition through an agoraphobic recluse, a young man working in a chit fund, and a TV host striking out for a new life against the backdrop of a crumbling, nostalgia-mired Calcutta.

The Cinematheque International Village 8

Piaffe

Award Winners Experimental & Avant Garde Women Directors

Timid foley artist Eva's latest project, creating sound effects for a medication commercial starring a dark bay horse, releases her inhibitions and transforms her physical form beyond the realm of possibility.

International Village 10 International Village 8 The Rio Theatre

A Piece of Sky

Award Winners Drama

In a remote alpine village, Anna, a young mother, falls in love with Marco, a strong and silent farmhand. After they get married, Marco’s behaviour grows erratic, leading up to a transgression that threatens to tear their family apart.

International Village 10 International Village 9

Queens of the Qing Dynasty

Drama Experimental & Avant Garde LGBTQIA2S+ Romance Women Directors

Recovering from a suicide attempt, a neurodiverse Cape Breton teen is drawn into the orbit of a genderqueer hospital volunteer who hails from Shanghai. Despite their disparate backgrounds, the pair operate on identical idiosyncratic frequencies.

International Village 9 The Cinematheque

Rabiye Kurnaz vs. George W. Bush

Award Winners Comedy Drama Human Rights & Social Justice

Feisty Turkish-German housewife Rabiye Kurnaz must cut through red tape, international political tensions, and language barriers to free her son from Guantánamo Bay. Hope persists in the form a new friendship with her lawyer-turned-travel-companion.

SFU Woodwards
Scarlet
Scarlet film image, director Pietro Marcello

Scarlet

Drama Romance

Using tinted archival footage and shot in lush, saturated colours, Scarlet is a romantic coming-of-age period tale about a young woman who is ostracized by her small French village. Featured in 2022 Cannes Film Festival's Directors’ Fortnight.

International Village 10 International Village 9

Stonewalling

Drama Women Directors

Lynn (Yao Honggui), a 20-something looking forward to a career as a flight attendant, has a pushy, patriarchal boyfriend and a mother deep in debt. When she finds herself pregnant, she decides to sell her unborn child to her mother's debtors.

The Cinematheque
There There
There There film image, director Andrew Bujalski

There There

Drama

Faced with the challenge of making movies under quarantine conditions, Andrew Bujalski came up with six two-handers, and shot each actor separately in this series of wry conversation pieces—a technical feat he carries off with casual elan.

International Village 8 The Rio Theatre
Thunder
Thunder film image, director Carmen Jaquier

Thunder

Drama Women Directors

After leaving her convent in the Swiss Alps, 17-year-old Elisabeth seeks spiritual enlightenment through sexual exultation via her late sister's journal. A bold debut from writer-director Carmen Jaquier.

International Village 10

Utama

Award Winners Drama Human Rights & Social Justice

High in the Bolivian Andes, a llama farmer confronts his own mortality and the impending demise of an ancient way of life in this visually expressive, strikingly authentic Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner.

International Village 9
We Are Family
We Are Family film image, director Benny Lau

We Are Family

Veteran Hong Kong star Eric Tsang (Infernal Affairs) has a field day here as a terrible actor (actually a retiree who works as an extra) whose unwaveringly sunny disposition makes him a natural for WeFamily, a rent-a-mom-and-pop operation.

International Village 9 International Village 10

What We Do Next

Award Winners Drama

A New York City councilwoman, a corporate lawyer, and a newly released convict are pitted against each other in a web of blackmail as they walk the razor’s edge between their morals and the standard judicial process.

International Village 10 The Rio Theatre

A Woman Escapes

Drama Women Directors

From the window of a Parisian apartment willed to her by a late friend, a young woman begins a series of video correspondences with two filmmakers to process her grief. A collaborative meditation on the vital role of community in healing.

International Village 10

The Word

Award Winners Drama Women Directors

In 1968 Czechoslovakia, a small-town notary refuses to join the Communist Party. Inspired by director Beata Parkanová's own grandparents, The Word depicts the intimate lives of Václav and Věra and their bond in the face of political intimidation.

The Cinematheque VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre

Zátopek

Action & Suspense Award Winners Drama

David Ondříček's thoroughly winning biopic tells the story of the legendary long distance runner Emil Zátopek, still the only man to have won Olympic gold medals in the 5000m, 10,000m, and the marathon in the same year (1952).

International Village 8 International Village 9

Maigret

Action & Suspense Drama

In the aftermath of a young woman’s bloody murder in Paris—her identity shrouded in mystery—detective Jules Maigret (Gérard Depardieu) begins to unravel the strange details surrounding her life and death.

International Village 9 International Village 8
The Mountain
The Mountain film image, director Thomas Salvador

The Mountain

Award Winners Drama

An engineer becomes entranced by the lure of the Alps, abandons his job, pitches his tent high above the snow line, and explores. This simple but remarkable movie goes high and deep. It will inspire and infuriate according to your taste for adventure.

International Village 9 International Village 8

No Prior Appointment

Drama

An Iranian doctor returns to her home country after 30 years upon learning of her estranged father's death, bringing her young autistic son with her. Nominated for Best Director, Best Cinematography, and Best Screenplay at the 2022 Fajr Film Festival.

International Village 8
Aftersun
Aftersun film image, director Charlotte Wells

Aftersun

Award Winners Drama Women Directors

On holiday in Turkey, a young father and his adolescent daughter are often mistaken for siblings as they carouse like impish kids. However, his personal demons are about to come calling. An affecting and frequently astonishing debut from Charlotte Wells.

International Village 9

Plan 75

Award Winners Drama Human Rights & Social Justice Women Directors

In a near future Japan, seniors aged 75-plus are encouraged to voluntarily euthanize themselves for the good of society. While the plan seems to solve the dilemma, everyone involved questions the morality of it.

International Village 9 International Village 10

Riverside Mukolitta

Comedy Drama Women Directors

Yamada, an ex-con dealing with the sudden death of his estranged father, makes a fresh start by moving to a small fishing village, and into an old apartment building populated by a group of quirky misfits. Based on director Naoko Ogigami's own 2019 novel.

International Village 9

Septet: The Story of Hong Kong

Drama Women Directors

These shorts from seven of Hong Kong’s best filmmakers is an elegiac tribute to the city's past—and a subversive commentary on its present. From kung fu to the cultural politics of cuisine, the filmmakers mine their city's history with wit and poignancy.

International Village 9

Vanguard

Rising international talents.

The Locust

Comedy Drama Women Directors

With her semi-autobiographical screenplay finally going into production, Hanieh must now contend with the nonplussed cast's cutting remarks. This filmmaker's tragicomic living hell is fueled by anarchic energy, palpable anxiety, and biting humour.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre International Village 8

Moja Vesna

Drama Women Directors

Ten-year-old Moja has her hands full taking care of her pregnant sister Vesna and their grief-stricken father, all reeling from the sudden loss of their mother. A stirring debut by Cannes Cinéfondation alumna Sara Kern.

International Village 8

Other Cannibals

Drama

Fausto and Ivan are making important preparations. Both are careful to maintain boundaries and honour their side of the arrangement. Except they keep postponing the main event. That’s understandable, as it involves taking a human life.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre The Cinematheque

Know Your Place

Award Winners Drama

Running an important errand across south Seattle, two teenagers become aware that their rapidly gentrifying city is slowly forcing out people of colour like themselves. An Emerald City odyssey that investigates identity, responsibility, and community.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre The Cinematheque

Nightsiren

Award Winners Women Directors

A young woman shows up in a remote Slovakian mountain village looking for answers about her tragic family past, but her arrival sparks vicious rumours, resurrecting old superstitions that reveal a troubled family history.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre The Rio Theatre

Tortoise Under the Earth

Drama Human Rights & Social Justice

Centering on the story of a young couple trying to come to terms with the loss of their daughter, Tortoise Under the Earth positions an intimate story of loss against the backdrop of cultural and environmental devastation caused by uranium mining.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre
The Uncle
The Uncle film image, co-directors David Kapac and Andrija Mardešić

The Uncle

In the 1980s Balkan countryside, a family prepares for the arrival of their uncle, who will inspect every detail of the Christmas presentation. They eat turkey, sing, watch family videos, and open presents. But something is amiss.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre International Village 8
Harvest Moon
Harvest Moon film image, director Amarsaikhan Baljinnyam

Harvest Moon

Comedy Drama

A delightfully tender drama following a man returning to his native village to tie up loose family ends, where he strikes up an unlikely friendship with a 10-year-old orphan boy determined to claim his place in the vast Mongolian grasslands.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre The Cinematheque

Northern Lights

The next wave of Canadian and Indigenous storytellers.

Anyox

Catalyst Mentorship Program Alumni Documentary Human Rights & Social Justice Women Directors

Originally constructed around a copper mine, the once thriving company town of Anyox now boasts only two year-round residents. An immaculately crafted portrait of the damage wrought by the callousness of colonial ambition.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre The Cinematheque
Concrete Valley
Concrete Valley film image, director Antoine Bourges

Concrete Valley

Drama

A Syrian doctor struggles to hold on to his identity as his family adjusts to life in Canada. Director Antoine Bourges (Fail to Appear) continues his social realist project, turning a lens this time to struggles faced by new immigrants to Canada.

The Cinematheque

This House

Award Winners Documentary Experimental & Avant Garde Women Directors

Miryam Charles’ haunting work examines the circumstances surrounding her cousin Tessa’s death, while speculating on the life that she might've had. A lyrical reminder of violence’s capacity to rupture reality and shake the foundations of family.

The Cinematheque International Village 8

I Like Movies

Comedy Drama Women Directors

Intent on earning his film school tuition, a teenage cinephile lands a video store job. This humane comedy traces this pretentious curmudgeon’s path from practically sociopathic self-involvement to his first fraught encounters with self-awareness

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre The Rio Theatre
The Maiden
The Maiden film image, director Graham Foy

The Maiden

Award Winners Drama

After losing his best friend Kyle in a tragic accident, Colton’s life is turned upside down when he uncovers a missing girl’s diary. A debut feature that's visually arresting, revealing an achingly tender side of adolescence.

International Village 8
Riceboy Sleeps
Riceboy Sleeps film image, director Anthony Shim

Riceboy Sleeps

Award Winners Drama

Raising her son Dong-hyun (Dohyun Noel Hwang, then Ethan Hwang) in Vancouver’s suburbs, So-young (Choi Seung-yoon), a South Korean immigrant, desperately wants to instill a sense of pride in the boy. Meanwhile, he just wants to fit in.

Vancouver Playhouse The Rio Theatre

Rosie

Drama LGBTQIA2S+ Women Directors

Set in 1980s Montréal, Rosie is a love letter to misfits and found families. When an English-speaking Indigenous orphan is deposited at the doorstep of her Francophone aunt, they must learn to find beauty and magic amidst their trying circumstances.

International Village 10

Soft

Drama LGBTQIA2S+

After some petty theft grants three queer adolescents admission to a Toronto gay club, they are left to confront dark consequences. Joseph Amenta’s debut feature is a love letter to friendships and a testament to the queer community’s perseverance.

International Village 8
Something You Said Last Night
Something You Said Last Night film image, director Luis De Filippis

Something You Said Last Night

Award Winners Drama LGBTQIA2S+ Women Directors

Having already suffered the humiliation of losing her job, Ren must now endure a week of summer vacation with her overbearing parents and extroverted, overachieving younger sister. A disarmingly intimate debut feature by Luis de Filippis.

International Village 10 International Village 8

Until Branches Bend

Drama Human Rights & Social Justice Women Directors

Discovering a potentially invasive insect inside a peach, fruit packer Robin immediately reports it. When management refuses to take action, she goes public with her concerns and precipitates a widescale shutdown in her Okanagan town.

Vancouver Playhouse The Rio Theatre

back home

Catalyst Mentorship Program Alumni Documentary Women Directors

In 1999, 11-year-old Nisha Platzer lost her brother, Josh, to suicide. Twenty years later, her search leads her to the door of Josh's chosen family. An eloquent collage that asserts that both grieving and healing are meant to be communal experiences.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre The Cinematheque

You Can Live Forever

Drama LGBTQIA2S+ Women Directors

Set in a Jehovah’s Witness congregation, the film follows queer teenager Jamie as she resists the tight community hold while falling in love with Marike, a charming young Witness tasked with welcoming Jamie into the fold.

International Village 9 International Village 10

Golden Delicious

Drama LGBTQIA2S+

Golden Delicious is a coming-of-age story about an Asian-Canadian teenager who is torn between his girlfriend’s dreams of their future and his father’s ambition, all the while struggling with finding himself and his feelings for the boy next door.

The Rio Theatre
North of Normal
North of Normal film image, director Carly Stone

North of Normal

Drama Women Directors

Having spent her early years in a wilderness commune founded by her anti-establishment grandfather, Cea must shed her alternative upbringing and acclimatize to civilization when her mother, Michelle, desires even greater freedom.

International Village 10

When Time Got Louder

Drama LGBTQIA2S+ Women Directors

Leaving home for university, Abbie (Willow Shields) thrives and experiences self-actualization. However, she’s tormented by the knowledge that her brother Kayden (Jonathan Simao), who has autism and is non-verbal, is reeling in her absence.

Vancouver Playhouse SFU Woodwards

Insights

Documentaries that change the way we see the world.

1341 Frames of Love and War

Award Winners

Ran Tal's sobering film captures over 50 years of Israeli history through the lens of photojournalist Micha Bar-Am, providing a deep focus on the beauty and horror of humanity as chronicled through his camera.

SFU Woodwards International Village 10

Adam Ondra: Pushing the Limits

Action & Suspense Documentary

One of the best rock climbers in the world, Adam Ondra prepares for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. An intimate portrait of devotion and dedication to the art of climbing alongside the mental and physical toll it takes along the path to greatness.

International Village 10 International Village 8
A Fire Inside
A Fire Inside, directors Justin Krook and Luke Mazzaferro

A Fire Inside

Documentary

During Australia's apocalyptic bushfires in 2019-2020, volunteer firefighters put their lives on the line to save their communities. A clarion call about climate change and an ode to the camaraderie of strangers standing together in the midst of a crisis.

International Village 10 VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre

All That Breathes

Award Winners Documentary

Two brothers are determined to nurse back to health New Delhi's ailing black kites—the megacity's ubiquitous birds of prey. Striving to keep their wildlife rescue clinic afloat, political tensions loom over their neighbourhood as ominously as the smog.

International Village 8 SFU Woodwards

Framing Agnes

Award Winners Documentary Human Rights & Social Justice LGBTQIA2S+

Exhuming transcripts from a 1950s study on transgender individuals, Chase Joynt and his collaborators employ re-enactments, reinvention, and personal reflections to examine the trans stories that are told and how—and by whom—they are authored.

SFU Woodwards The Rio Theatre
Good Night Oppy
Good Night Oppy film image, director Ryan White

Good Night Oppy

Documentary

Sent on a mission to Mars with a life expectancy of 90 days, the exploration rover Opportunity instead lived for 15 years. With incredible interviews and awe-inspiring re-creations, this documentary doubles as an open-hearted, intergalactic underdog tale.

SFU Woodwards

If You Are a Man

Thirteen-year-old Opio works at a gold mine in Burkina Faso. It’s a harsh existence, and to earn the money for an education that might liberate him from it, the child must take a new, dangerous step in his occupation.

International Village 8
The Killing of a Journalist
The Killing of a Journalist film image, director Matt Sarnecki

The Killing of a Journalist

Documentary Human Rights & Social Justice

Matt Sarnecki explores the murder of a Slovak reporter in a documentary that grips like a true page-turner: among the story ingredients are gangsters, crooked cops, blackmail, hidden thumb drives, and assassination plots via emoji-laced text messages.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre International Village 10

The Klabona Keepers

Documentary Human Rights & Social Justice

The Klabona Keepers is a fierce account of the Tahltan Nation's struggle to protect the Klabona Sacred Headwaters from commercial mining. Interspersing verité cinematography with interviews, the film documents the tactics used by the land defenders.

Vancouver Playhouse International Village 10

Last Flight Home

Documentary Women Directors

In January 2021, filmmaker Ondi Timoner's father Eli told his family that he was ready to die—as soon as California law would allow. A vérité record of the patriarch's last few weeks on earth and a testament to a different measure of fulfillment.

International Village 10 International Village 9

Love Will Come Later

Documentary Romance Women Directors

Like many young Moroccans, Samir considers marrying a foreigner the key to a better life in Europe—but his family would rather arrange a marriage for him with a Moroccan woman. When he falls in love with a tourist, he weighs a life-changing decision.

The Cinematheque VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre

My Imaginary Country

Documentary Human Rights & Social Justice

Patricio Guzmán is the poet laureate of Chilean cinema and its foremost historian. Here he returns to his early work of frontline reportage, documenting the recent, extraordinary uprising which promises to transform Chile for the better.

International Village 10 International Village 8

Rebellion

Documentary Human Rights & Social Justice Women Directors

This candid observational documentary gives us the inside story on the rise of Extinction Rebellion, the environmental protest movement which injected new urgency into climate activism. An empowering testament to the inspiring impact of direct action.

SFU Woodwards International Village 10
Retrograde
Retrograde film image, director Matthew Heineman

Retrograde

Retrograde captures details of American and Afghan soldiers navigating the politics of the United States' withdrawal from Afghanistan, focusing on General Sami Sadat, who is left bearing the brunt of responsibility to fight an unwinnable war.

SFU Woodwards International Village 9

Unarchived

Documentary Women Directors

In this zippy doc, we learn about a new way of representing the past, and meet community curators and archivists from across BC whose mission is to share the secret, neglected, and untold histories of this place we only think we know.

SFU Woodwards International Village 10

Spectrum

Innovative nonfiction filmmaking.

8 Stories About My Hearing Loss

Women Directors

In this autobiographical documentary, director Charo Mato flits between childhood stories, the science of hearing loss, and the poetry of life and language to explore the stories of the d/Deaf and hard of hearing while resisting a monolithic experience.

The Cinematheque International Village 8
Day After...
Day After... film image, director Kamar Ahmad Simon

Day After...

Award Winners

The Rocket—a paddle steamer—has been ferrying rich and poor through Bangladesh for the best part of a century. This kinetic and artfully chaotic hybrid documentary immerses us in a two-day journey and gives us a vivid snapshot of the country.

International Village 8 The Cinematheque

De Humani Corporis Fabrica

Documentary Women Directors

Directors Véréna Paravel and Lucien Castaing-Taylor utilize micro-cameras to wander the human body without limit. The horror of open surgery gives way to the abstract beauty of medical imaging, repurposing it to craft a harrowingly immersive documentary.

The Cinematheque VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre

The Eclipse

Award Winners Documentary Women Directors

In the personal and poetic documentary, Nataša Urban (b. 1977) revisits the conflict that tore Yugoslavia apart through the prism of her immediate family and friends' often reluctant recollections, piercing a web of self-protective amnesia.

The Cinematheque

Geographies of Solitude

Award Winners Documentary Experimental & Avant Garde Women Directors

Jacquelyn Mills immerses us in the natural wonders of Nova Scotia's stunning and remote Sable Island, home to wild horses, sparrows, invertebrates, and a devoted researcher. Winner of multiple awards at the Berlinale and Hot Docs.

International Village 8 VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre

The Hermit of Treig

Award Winners Documentary Women Directors

In this rather special film, Lizzie MacKenzie trains her camera on octogenarian Ken Smith, who has lived more than four decades off-the-grid on the shores of Loch Treig, in the Scottish Highlands. This cheerful hermit is a personable storyteller.

The Cinematheque

Riotsville, U.S.A.

Drama Human Rights & Social Justice Women Directors

Compiled from government and TV news footage from the 1960s (with commentary and brief on-screen contextual notes), this transfixing, resonant essay film looks at the widespread civil unrest of the period, and how the establishment chose to respond.

The Rio Theatre International Village 9 The Cinematheque

See You Friday, Robinson

Award Winners Documentary Experimental & Avant Garde Women Directors

Iranian filmmaker and author Ebrahim Golestan finds a new pen pal in Jean-Luc Godard. Their correspondences are full of poetic contemplations, cryptic riddles, and mutual reverence as they meditate on being an artist in the 21st century.

The Cinematheque International Village 8

Portraits

Ground-breaking artists, great performances, and cultural icons.

Ever Deadly
Ever Deadly film image, co-directors Tanya Tagaq and Chelsea McMullan

Ever Deadly

Art, Music & Photography Documentary Women Directors

Ever Deadly is an intimate portrait of the acclaimed Inuk throat singer Tanya Tagaq, combining exceptional performance recordings with interviews, verité camerawork, archival material, and hand-drawn animation.

SFU Woodwards

Goya, Carrière and the Ghost of Buñuel

Art, Music & Photography Documentary

The late, great French screenwriter Jean-Claude Carrière—Buñuel's closest collaborator—guides us through the extraordinary riches of Francisco Goya's work, with further commentary by Julian Schnabel, Carlos Saura, and others.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre International Village 9 International Village 8
Hopper - An American Love Story
Hopper - An American Love Story film image, director Phil Grabsky

Hopper - An American Love Story

A realist on the surface, Edward Hopper always suggested worlds beyond his compositions, distilling a vivid, solitary sense of life in the 20th century. This doc from the Exhibition on Screen series explores America's favourite artist. World Premiere.

SFU Woodwards International Village 9
Cesária Évora
Cesária Évora film image, director Ana Sofia Fonseca

Cesária Évora

Art, Music & Photography Documentary Women Directors

Ana Sofia Fonseca's documentary about legendary singer Cesária Évora offers a rare glimpse into the Queen of Morna's mischievous humour, her love of Capo Verde, and her extraordinary ability to translate emotion into melody.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre International Village 9 International Village 8

Dancing Pina

Documentary

Choreographer Pina Bausch's brilliance lives on as the Dresden Semperoper Ballet rehearses her Iphigenia in Tauris and dancers in Senegal breathe new life to The Rite of Spring. A fascinating insight into the lives of dancers and the power of movement.

International Village 9 SFU Woodwards
The King of Wuxia
The King of Wuxia film image, director Lin Jing-jie

The King of Wuxia

Documentary

Lin Jing-Jie’s film is a detailed, deeply poignant tribute to master filmmaker King Hu (1932-1997). Actors, crew members, and fellow directors pay tribute to the man and his work, and their recollections and analyses form a mosaic-like depiction.

The Cinematheque
Lay Down Your Heart
Lay Down Your Heart film image, director Marie Clements

Lay Down Your Heart

Women Directors

Marie Clements' Lay Down Your Heart is a touching tribute to Niall McNeil, a multi-talented artist in theatre who happens to be a person living with Down Syndrome. A heartwarming celebration of a local artist who has succeeded on his own terms.

International Village 10 International Village 9

The Melt Goes On Forever: The Art and Times of David Hammons

Art, Music & Photography Documentary

The Melt Goes On Forever chronicles the elusive and provocative African-American artist David Hammons' body of work, which is firmly rooted in the questioning of dominant culture and exposing racial injustice.

International Village 10 International Village 9

Music Pictures: New Orleans

Art, Music & Photography Documentary

Ben Chace (Sin Alas) dips into four recording sessions, beginning with the Queen of Soul, Irma Thomas; Benny Jones from the Treme Brass Band; Little Freddie King; and finally, father and son Ellis and Jason Marsalis.

International Village 9

OKAY! (The ASD Band Film)

Art, Music & Photography Award Winners Documentary

Filled with infectious melodies and catchy earworms, Okay! (The ASD Band Film) chronicles the band preparing to record their first album of original songs and play their first live show, while exploring their experience of being autistic.

International Village 9 International Village 10

Soviet Bus Stops

Art, Music & Photography Documentary

It may sound esoteric but this is a joyous film about the historical anomaly of whimsical, eccentric, aesthetically audacious bus stops that permeated the vast Soviet Bloc, lovingly, obsessively tracked down by Canadian photographer Chris Herwig.

The Cinematheque International Village 8

Altered States

Where the wild ones come out to play.

Blaze

After witnessing a brutal assault, 12-year-old Blaze (Julia Savage) takes shelter in an imaginary world that’s home to Zephyr, a papier-mâché dragon who’ll stoke her warrior spirit and allow her to roar. A towering debut by Del Kathryn Barton.

The Rio Theatre
Huesera
Huesera film image, director Michelle Garza Cervera

Huesera

Women Directors

Soon-to-be mother Valeria starts experiencing disturbing visions and night terrors, finding little support from those closest to her—until she is forced to seek help from a mysterious group of women specializing in this type of threat.

The Rio Theatre
Quantum Cowboys
Quantum Cowboys film image, director Quantum Cowboys, starring David Arquette

Quantum Cowboys

Animation Award Winners

In 1870s Arizona, a pair of drifters take a deep dive into a multiverse in which a dozen different mediums—including 16mm, paper cutouts, rotoscoping, handdrawn animation, oil paints, 8k video, collage, and digital animation—depict disparate realities.

The Rio Theatre The Cinematheque
Leonor Will Never Die
Leonor Will Never Die film image, director Martika Ramirez Escobar

Leonor Will Never Die

Action & Suspense Award Winners Comedy Women Directors

Once-prominent action filmmaker Leonor spends her old age daydreaming in her apartment, until she falls into a coma and magically finds herself in one of her own long-forgotten screenplays, blurring the lines between reality and dream, life and death.

The Rio Theatre
Rodeo
Rodeo film image, director Lola Quivoron

Rodeo

Award Winners Women Directors

When loner Julia infiltrates a local “rodeo”—an underground motocross circuit where brash bikers one-up one another—she’ll need to deliver something showstopping to earn acceptance. As it so happens, she has an idea for an audacious heist.

The Rio Theatre

Sick of Myself

Comedy Drama

When her boyfriend becomes a cause célèbre in conceptual art circles, Signe’s (Kristine Kujath Thorp) attention junkie tendencies hit overdrive. Inhaling banned meds in order to incur hideous side effects, she’s elated when a wave of sympathy follows.

The Rio Theatre VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre
Smoking Causes Coughing
Smoking Causes Coughing film image, director Quentin Dupieux

Smoking Causes Coughing

Comedy Drama

After a battle with a foam-rubber turtle, superheroic, hard-smoking Tobacco Force are ordered to undergo a week of team-building. Alas, there’s no rest for the spandex-clad, as the reigning Emperor of Evil schemes to annihilate the universe.

The Rio Theatre
Something in the Dirt
Something in the Dirt film image, co-directors Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead

Something in the Dirt

After witnessing an inexplicable event, neighbours and conspiracy theorists Levi and John become intent on monetizing the paranormal activity by shooting a Netflix-style docuseries. A captivating lo-fi sci-fi spectacle.

The Rio Theatre

VIFF Short Forum

Short-form storytellers from Canada.

VIFF Short Forum: Program 1
From Chile to Canada film image

VIFF Short Forum: Program 1

Shorts

What kind of alchemy occurs to transform hardship into fortune? Here, the extraordinary burn brightly.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre
VIFF Short Forum: Program 2
Patty Vs. Patty film image

VIFF Short Forum: Program 2

Shorts

Fear, doubt, and loneliness give way to pleasure, empowerment, and reclamation—or, is it the other way around?

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre
VIFF Short Forum: Program 3
Horse Brothers film image

VIFF Short Forum: Program 3

Shorts

The camera eye knows no bounds in these stories that push the limits of gravity and grace.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre
VIFF Short Forum: Program 4
Late Summer film image

VIFF Short Forum: Program 4

Shorts

Bouncing through nostalgic aesthetics and genre storytelling, a contemporary point of view comes into focus.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre
VIFF Short Forum: Program 5
Heartbeat of a Nation film image

VIFF Short Forum: Program 5

Shorts

Growing up is hard to do, often harder as we get older.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre
VIFF Short Forum: Program 6
N'xaxaitkw film image

VIFF Short Forum: Program 6

Shorts

Cinematic form is given to life’s big mysteries: luck and fate, love and loss, and the spiritual supernatural.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre

International Shorts

Immersive international shorts.

International Shorts: Connect/Disconnect/Reconnect
Island of Freedom film image, director Petr Januschka

International Shorts: Connect/Disconnect/Reconnect

Shorts

The films in this shorts program are all about connections. People connecting with one another, dealing with change, or rediscovering a part of themselves and their past.

International Village 8
International Shorts: Family Ties
Mumu film image

International Shorts: Family Ties

Shorts

The bonds of family form the basis of this program of short films. Bonds with history and responsibility—sometimes close, sometimes strained—now and for the future.

International Village 8
International Shorts: Having a Bad Day
Plastic Killer film image, director Jose Pozo

International Shorts: Having a Bad Day

Shorts

Misadventures, bad choices, and a series of unfortunate events are all present in this program of short films. There is some serious drama and a bit of comedy on display in these exhilarating, thoughtful, and unpredictable tales.

International Village 8
International Shorts: Morality Plays
The Lone Wolf film image

International Shorts: Morality Plays

Shorts

Morals are being challenged on many fronts. The protagonists in this program of short films are all faced with difficult moral choices and they don’t always make the right decisions.

International Village 8
International Shorts: Personal Journeys
Ponto Final film image, director Miguel López Beraza

International Shorts: Personal Journeys

Shorts

The films in this shorts program are all about discovery. Beautiful and thought-provoking voyages of internal and external discovery that honour relations and history, while encountering stimuli that promote a new understanding of self.

International Village 8

Reel Youth Film Festival

Shorts

The Reel Youth Film Festival is a diverse collection of short films from emerging filmmakers around the world. Chosen by an international youth jury from 1300+ global submissions, the RYFF will show you the world through the eyes of its talented youth.

International Village 8

MODES

Form-bending international short work.

MODES 1
It's Raining Frogs Outside film image, director Maria Estela Paiso

MODES 1

Shorts

Visions of dark impulses are given the spotlight and invite an opportunity to reflect on the personal in relation to the political. From Congo to China, and the Philippines to Poland, the end is nigh.

VIFF - VIFF Centre - Studio Theatre
MODES 2
Parasite Family film image, director Prapat Jiwarangsan

MODES 2

Shorts

Looking closer at archival images and stories from the past, these artists re-examine and re-create to establish history anew. A daring mix of approaches that excavate new ways of seeing old perspectives.

VIFF - VIFF Centre - Studio Theatre
MODES 3
Perforated Realities film image, director Gustaf Broms

MODES 3

Animation Shorts

Whimsical, questioning and utterly absorbing, a collection of animated work delving into worlds of wonder, subversion, and Marxist mystery. These works are fun and some re-construct ideas of animation, paying homage to experimentalists who came before.

VIFF - VIFF Centre - Studio Theatre

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