Wild Goat Surf
It’s 2003, and 12-year-old Rell “Goat” Barrel (Shayelin Martin) and her mom Jane (Caitlyn Sponheimer) are scheming and scrounging their way through another Penticton summer. Having illegally sublet the house they’re renting; they’re now holed up in a RV park bordering Skaha Lake. From this modest base of operations, Goat befriends an awkward outsider (Leandro Guedes), skateboards, shoplifts, and talks a big game about becoming a world-class surfer… Despite having never actually climbed atop a board or laid eyes on the ocean.
Helming her debut feature, Sponheimer conspires with cinematographer Joseph Schweers and composer Cayne McKenzie to transform the Okanagan Valley into a majestic, almost mythical backdrop for this tale of a young girl trying to slip the shackles of circumstance. Skilfully subverting expectations at practically every turn, a story of grand ambitions draws its persuasive power from chance encounters, casual exchanges, and instances in which summer lethargy cedes to adolescent rebellion.
September 29 & October 3: Q&A with director Caitlyn Sponheimer & crew
Series Media Partner
Shayelin Martin, Leandro Guedes, Dyllón Burnside, Caitlyn Sponheimer, Brittany Drisdelle
Abubakar Salim, Robert Montcalm, Warren Sultatycky, Dyllón Burnside
Mike Johnston, Caitlyn Sponheimer
Award winning Canadian filmmaker, Caitlyn Sponheimer, is a Director Guild of Canada nominee, Reykjavik Talent Lab alumna and Telefilm Canada and Canada Council for the Arts grant recipient. As an actor, Caitlyn is a graduate of Meisner’s Neighborhood Playhouse. Her work has been shown at festivals around the globe with her co-written/lead role feature premiering under Telefilm’s Best of New Canadian Cinema at Cannes Marche (’18). Caitlyn produced and costarred in the multi-award-winning Telefilm Canada and Alberta Media Fund feature Jasmine Road (2020). In 2021, Caitlyn wrote, directed, and produced a project for 20th Digital Studios/Freeform, The Ugliest of Them All, which garnered nearly 3 million views in under a week. Currently, Caitlyn is completing her debut feature film, the Telefilm and Crave/Bell Media Wild Goat Surf, which she wrote, directed, and starred in. Acting credits include Amazon’s The Boys, NBC’s Transplant, and Supermassive’s horror video game from the Dark Pictures Anthology Little Hope starring opposite Will Poulter.
Missing VIFF? Check out what’s playing at the VIFF Centre
Someone Lives Here
Throughout the COVID pandemic, Toronto has seen a catastrophic increase in homelessness. Sick of seeing his city unable to care for its unhoused people, Khaleel Seivwright quit his job as a full-time carpenter and dedicated himself to building insulated shelters--called 'tiny shelters.'
Oscar® Shorts 2024: Animation
The best animated shorts of the year, according to the Academy... films from Iran, Israel, France and the USA. This program will also feature a handful of "best runners-up".
Big Fight in Little Chinatown
Set against the backdrop of the COVID pandemic and an unprecedented rise in anti-Asian racism, the documentary takes us into the lives of residents, businesses, and community organizers whose neighborhoods are facing active erasure.
Oscar® Shorts 2024: Live Action
This year's nominees for Best Live Action Short Films include a mini-masterpiece from Wes Anderson and French Canadian entry, Invincible.
The Invisible Fight
Fans of Black Sabbath, kung fu, and/or wacky comedy won't want to miss The Invisible Fight. This gonzo Estonian martial arts movie is an unholy cross between Aki Kaurismaki and Edgar Wright; a true one-off.