Search VIFF Films

UK, France, Germany, Afghanistan

(Syngué sabour)
Cinema of Our Time

Holding vigil at her husband’s side, a devoted Muslim (famous Iranian actress Golshifteh Farahani) discovers unexpected empowerment. As she expresses her frustrations and desires, new possibilities present themselves in her war-torn city. Atiq Rahimi’s adaptation of his novel proves a "poetic and politically charged allegory."—Screen. Winner, Best Actress, Abu Dhabi 2012.

Islamic World, Literary (inc. Adaptations), War & Espionage


Cinema of Our Time

Fresh from a psychiatric hospital, Liso tries to fit in and fails. Whether puttering about on his scooter or visiting with a girlfriend, no connection. Santiago Loza uses a laconic camera to keep us at Liso’s side and, with every scene, the mystery deepens… Winner, Best Argentine Film, Buenos Aires 2013.



Special Presentations

Mia Wasikowska commands the screen in John Curran’s mesmerizing character study based on Robyn Davidson’s best-selling adventure journal. With her faithful dog and four unruly camels in tow, she departs Central Australia on foot, bound for the Indian Ocean. Her only obstacles are 2,700 kms of desert and her own personal demons…

Adventures Outdoors, Animals, Literary (inc. Adaptations)
International Shorts

To a struggling young artist selling drawings in a subway station, the prospect of a paying job seems inviting—but the dark reality threatens to kill her imagination. Featuring the voices of Rachel Griffiths and Nicholas Hope.

Animation, Under 18 May Attend, Women Directors
International Shorts

Who would think that a ride home from two apparently friendly strangers after you got mugged could turn into a life-changing experience?

International Shorts

A poignant Christmas message that demonstrates the power of words.

Family Relations, Women Directors

Laos, Thailand, Australia

Cinema of Our Time

A ten-year-old pariah desperately strives to earn redemption and reverse his family’s fortunes by constructing a prize-winning rocket. Making exemplary use of his Laos setting, Kim Mordaunt crafts "a lush and bruising coming-of-age story…"—Screen. Winner, Audience Award, Best Narrative Feature, Best Actor, Tribeca 2013; Audience Award, Sydney 2013.

Adventures Outdoors, Audience Award Winners, Drama, Family Relations, Under 18 May Attend, Women Directors

France, Austria

Arts and Letters

Spanning the totality of Michael Haneke’s career and featuring interviews with him, as well as footage of Haneke working on the films Amour (Oscar winner for best foreign language film), Code Unknown and The White Ribbon, Yves Montmayeur’s documentary portrait is "a must-see for anyone who admires this director."—Guardian

Fine Arts & Theatre, Filmmaking
Spotlight on France

Two of France’s hottest young stars, Léa Seydoux (Blue Is the Warmest Colour) and Tahar Rahim (A Prophet), play workers at a nuclear power station who fall in love in Rebecca Zlotowski’s powerful drama. Offers a rare and fascinating look inside the everyday workings of a nuclear power plant. "Engrossing, superbly acted."—Variety

Drama, Economics & Globalization, Romance, Science & Technology

Italy, Austria, Germany

(Das Venedig Prinzip)
Nonfiction Features

Venice is sinking—under the weight of more than 21 million tourists per year. Andreas Pichler’s revelatory and compassionate documentary is squarely on the side of the locals as they use humour and heart to cope with unconcerned governments, oblivious day-tourists and the disastrous crumbling of a way of life.

Fine Arts & Theatre, Economics & Globalization

Austria, Germany

Cinema of Our Time

Gorgeously designed and photographed, Peter Sehr and Marie Noëlle’s epic life of "Mad King" Ludwig of Bavaria (Sabin Tambrea) paints a humanizing picture of a young monarch brought low by his belief that culture—exemplified by the music of Richard Wagner—could change society for the better. Winner, Best Young Actor, Bavarian Film Awards 2013.

Biography, Drama, History, Queer Interest, War & Espionage
(Max Beckmann)
Arts and Letters

"To create is to be saved," claimed German painter Max Beckmann, heralded alongside Picasso and Braque as a seminal modernist master. Michael Trabitzsch’s fascinating look at Beckmann’s persecuted and peripatetic existence uses examples of his work, interviews, re-enactments, photos and archival footage to illuminate a singular life.

Fine Arts & Theatre, Biography, History

France, Austria, Germany

(Paradies: Hoffnung)
Cinema of Our Time

As befits its title, the conclusion of Ulrich Seidl’s Paradise trilogy is far more upbeat than the others. His story of chubby 13-year-old Melanie (Melanie Lenz), sent to weight-loss camp, still makes acerbic fun of the bourgeois, but his treatment of Melanie and her campmates is positively tender and affectionate.

Comedy, Drama, Sex & Eroticism