Bursting out of the starting blocks, Chloé Robichaud’s debut feature is a breathless account of a fiercely driven runner (Sophie Desmarais) who’s tripped up while navigating a romantic obstacle course. As the athletically gifted, socially stunted Sarah, Desmarais impresses with displays of physical prowess offset by the slightest, most revealing gestures.
Director Amy Miller (Carbon Rush, VIFF 2012) exposes the devastating human cost of agricultural land grabbing—the contentious issue of large-scale agricultural land acquisitions by domestic and transnational companies, governments and individuals.
How can a community end homelessness?
In Havana on business, Jack Petty (Gil Bellows, who directs with Tony Pantages) finds himself mixed up in a conspiracy that includes assassination, kidnapping and more. The fun here comes not just from the gritty details, sharp plot twists, close shaves and slick repartee, but from the knowledge, quickly acquired, that nothing is what it seems.
While researching her first serious role, a ’tween starlet doesn’t realize just how far from safety she’s strayed.
In Matt Johnson’s conceptually daring debut, a high school movie geek’s power fantasies about exacting revenge on his tormentors spill over into reality and spiral out of control. "The most empathetic and human portrait of bullying, and its deadly consequences, ever put on film.”—Huffington Post. Winner, Best Narrative Feature, Slamdance 2013.
Something sinister just went viral, coursing through social networks and sparking an apocalyptic outbreak. As five university students try to make sense of the chaos, Cody Calahan’s thriller offers an "intelligent and nicely claustrophobic spin on the killer virus/zombie film… Impressively designed and staged… [it] keeps on developing its structure and concept…"—Screen
The perils of online dating become readily apparent when a disastrous first encounter segues from awkwardness to anarchy.
In turns sensuous and sinister, Yonah Lewis and Calvin Thomas’ entrancing, atmospheric character study unfolds in an isolated, snowbound cabin within which a woman is plagued by grief, illness and a supernatural presence. "Viewers who are unafraid to venture into cinema’s darkest hinterlands will be impressed by what they discover here."—Grid
After witnessing an act of violence, a guilt-stricken junior hockey player must choose between his teammates and the truth.
As riots rage in the city streets, a man looks to escape the escalating violence. Solitude, however, forces him to confront his own irrational fear and anger.
Director Louise Archambault avoids the obvious traps in this thoughtful telling of the love between Gabrielle, a young woman affected by a neurodevelopmental disorder, and a boy she meets through her choir. With the stirring participation of famous Quebec singer Robert Charlebois, this is a crowd-pleaser with integrity. Winner, Audience Award, Locarno 2013.
A window to the life of Vancouver graffiti artists.
A prairie wild-child has been praying for deliverance from her dreary rural existence. Her ticket out of her nowhere town may’ve just pulled up in the driveway…
A man, a maid and a monster… Love triangles are seldom this bizarre.
Riding shotgun with biologist Alexandra Morton, documentarian Twyla Roscovich details the dangerous viruses that are flourishing in BC’s wild salmon and our government’s efforts to suppress evidence of this epidemic. An alarming document of our elected officials working against our best interests, this exposé is a must-see for every British Columbian.
As a tattoo is being etched into his skin, a man loses himself in the fading memories of his youth.
Danishka Esterhazy’s provocative and challenging film is a tale of survival against all odds, updating the story of Hansel and Gretel to reflect some grim contemporary realities: single parenthood, substance abuse, child neglect, pedophilia and serial murder. It’s a potent mix, and the performances are superb.
USA, Canada, Hong Kong
Arriving in Hong Kong with a 90-day tourist visa, a Chinese girl is led through seedy back alleys and into the world of underground prostitution.
Oliver Hockenhull’s eye-popping documentary is a lively, in-depth analysis of psychedelic drugs in light of current scientific and cultural knowledge. He examines the validity of psychedelics as adjuncts to therapy, as crucial but neglected taboo medicines and as paths to consciousness. Note: The Oct. 1 matinee will be the alternate Understanding Psychedelic Medicines "pop version." See viff.org for details.