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Use our search function below to sort the films by their English title, the names of directors, or their country of origin. Films can also be filtered by series, genre, or Vancouver International Film Festival venue. You can also browse by film series by visiting our Browse By Series page.

The majority of films in the Vancouver International Film Festival are unrated and you must be 18 and purchase a $2 VIFF membership to attend a screening. However, a selection of films are open to all ages.

Before you make your purchase, please note The Rio is 19+ exclusively with the exception of the rated High School Screenings at this venue.

Kenya, Uganda, Germany, South Africa

(Abbabi ba boda boda)
Duration: 85 mins
Country of Origin: Kenya,Uganda,Germany,South Africa, 2015
Series:
Cinema of Our Time

Conceived as an homage to the classic Bicycle Thieves, Donald Mugisha and James Tayler’s unsparing look at life on the streets of Kampalaneorealism "with a youthful edge" in their words—is anchored in the story of Abel, 15, who takes over his father’s motorcycle taxi (the "boda boda" of the title) and is immediately confronted by a corrupt world where a wrong turn, vehicular or otherwise, can have drastic consequences. "Poignant as well as entertaining."—Indiewire

Drama

UK

Duration: 92 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
Nonfiction Features

A brilliantly conceived and executed work that is as emotionally affecting as it is intellectually questioning, David Evans’ layered documentary follows two elderly men, both the sons of high-ranking Nazis responsible for thousands of deaths, on a trip to Poland and Ukraine. Once there, ghosts from the past are unearthed, and profound psychological insights about the ties that bind come to light. "A bracingly rigorous examination of inherited guilt and pain, [this] is an extraordinary documentary…"—Screen

History, Jewish Interest, War & Espionage
Duration: 98 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
Cinema of Our Time

Ben Rivers often draws upon that most under-appreciated genre—the film about filmmaking—in his work. His latest is a daring depiction of two mirrored fictional worlds: one in the Atlas mountains, where a new film by Galician director Oliver Laxe is being made; the other incorporating Laxe’s experience into a filmic consideration of Paul Bowles’ short story, "A Distant Episode." The result, both exciting and transgressive, provides ample rewards for patient viewers.

Experimental & Avant garde, Filmmaking
Duration: 92 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2014
Series:
Arts and Letters

With reunions now de rigueur, it’s heartening to see beloved troupes mustered for the right reasons. Performing together for the first time in 34 years, Monty Python’s Flying Circus don’t miss an absurdist beat, rediscovering their old idiosyncratic rhythms and legitimately driving each other to hysterics. Their enthusiasm and affection proves infectious, lending Roger Graef and James Rogan’s insightful documentary the sense that we’re amongst old friends. "A lovely reminder of what makes the Pythons so special, both individually and as a team."—Nerdist

Biography, On Comedy
Duration: 86 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
Nonfiction Features

Louise Osmond’s uplifting documentary tells an underdog tale for the ages. Determined to crash the “sport of kings,” 23 Welsh working-class friends invest everything in a thoroughbred foal, vaulting it from a squalid paddock in a depressed town to the winner’s circle at Wales’ most prestigious horse races. It’s funny, it’s moving, it has a great soundtrack and visual style. "Unforgettable… A shuddering, but delicately handled, exploration of that most basic human desire: to leave a mark and to forge a legacy."—Telegraph

Audience Award Winners, Sport
Duration: 91 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2014
Series:
Nonfiction Features

In the late 60s, India experienced a Western invasion as outsiders flooded over the border in hopes of finding enlightenment. The Beatles may’ve been the highest profile pilgrims, but Hannah Nydahl, a young Danish woman, was ultimately the most influential. She and her husband were the first westerners to study under His Holiness the 16th Karmapa and then spread his teachings abroad. Part biography, part adventure film, Adam Penny and Marta György-Kessler’s documentary celebrates a true pioneer. "Visually, the film is a pleasure…"—Village Voice

Audience Award Winners, Biography, Buddhist Interest
Duration: 16 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
International Shorts

When Sami breaks into a house, he is confronted by Sophia, who lures him into her bathtub—where things get even more surreal.

Drama
Duration: 93 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
Cinema of Our Time

Two towering performances by screen icons Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courtenay make Andrew Haigh’s slow-burn drama a must-see. A week before their 45th wedding anniversary, the Mercers’ genteel life in the English countryside is threatened when Geoff receives a letter saying that the body of his long-dead first love has been recovered—perfectly preserved—in the Swiss Alps… "Composed with rigour and exactitude and performed with a repressed, heartfelt passion."—Guardian

Drama, Women’s Issues.
Duration: 112 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
Special Presentations

Ben Wheatley’s bold adaptation of J.G. Ballard’s novel takes no prisoners. This scorching satire on class, hedonism and depravity in an imploding luxury apartment building is an even more apocalyptic class polemic than Snowpiercer. Throw in exquisitely unsettling turns from Tom Hiddleston and Jeremy Irons, a string quartet cover of ABBA’s 1975 hit “SOS,” an orgy or two and spice with cannibalism, and you have a tour de force of astonishing architectural ambition.

The Great Divide, Literary (inc. Adaptations), Fantasy, Sci-fi & Horror, Action, Thrills & Suspense
Duration: 79 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
Altered States

This deranged debut from Steve Oram (writer-star of Ben Wheatley’s Sightseers) is a lo-fi cinema madhouse stocked with proles gone primitive. In a down-at-heel British suburb, the devolution of man is complete, with communication reduced to grunts and threat displays. Despite the rampant brutishness and balls-to-the-wall partying, love blossoms. Think of this singular, exceedingly strange film as Pink Flamingos-meets-The Tribe if that makes it easier to envision but you still won’t be prepared for what awaits. “A bold new voice in British film is born."—Hollywood Reporter

Experimental & Avant garde, Comedy
Duration: 9 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2014
Series:
International Shorts

A hit-man sees his day go from bad to worse when his principles are tested by a kid, an uncooperative housewife and a nosy neighbour.

Comedy, Action, Thrills & Suspense
Duration: 98 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
Altered States

Holly’s (Abigail Hardingham) suspicions that Rob (Cian Barry) is still haunted by Nina (Fiona O’Shaughnessy), his deceased ex, prove (blood) spot on. Any time they try to have sex, an undead Nina manifests from his bed, naked and bloodied with cutting remarks at the ready. Holly, who’s odder than anyone gives her credit for, tries to include Nina, but she’s having none of it. Darkly hilarious and charmingly deranged, Ben and Chris Blaine’s debut amusingly renders the macabre mundane as it examines “what we carry with us.” “Strikingly original…”—Screen

Comedy, Fantasy, Sci-fi & Horror, Sex & Eroticism
808
Duration: 94 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
Arts and Letters

Even if the name means nothing to you, the Roland TR-808 drum machine has played a role in your life. The machine’s dirty bass was the signature sound of the early days of hip-hop and the basis for modern EDM. But don’t take our word for it—Alexander Dunn’s diverse film features testimony from Damon Albarn, Arthur Baker, Afrika Bambaataa, Diplo, Fatboy Slim, Chris Frantz of Talking Heads, Goldie, Rick Rubin, Bernard Sumner, Phil Collins, Pharrell Williams and others. "A must-see."—Rolling Stone. Dedicated to our dear, departed friend, Peter Culley.

Music & Arts

UK, Canada, Ireland

Duration: 105 mins
Country of Origin: UK,Canada,Ireland, 2015
Series:
Galas

Lured from Ireland by the American Dream, Eilis (Saoirse Ronan) instead lands in a hardscrabble reality of cramped boarding houses and grungy dancehalls. As homesickness grips her, she’s also torn between two admirers (Domhnall Gleeson and Emory Cohen). With Nick Hornby scripting, John Crowley crafts a stirring 50s-era immigration tale that also serves as an exhilarating profile of female empowerment. "Classily and classically crafted in the best sense."—Hollywood Reporter

Immigration, Literary (inc. Adaptations), Romance, Women’s Issues.

UK, Canada

Duration: 88 mins
Country of Origin: UK,Canada, 2015
Series:
BC Spotlight

In his compelling drama/documentary hybrid, Sasha Snow explores the complexities of Grant Hadwin, a logging engineer who chainsawed down a 300-year-old sacred tree on Haida Gwaii as a protest against rampant logging in the area. Inspired by John Vaillant’s Governor General’s Award-winning book, The Golden Spruce, Snow focusses on the more mysterious elements of Hadwin’s story and fate, crafting “[a] gorgeously photographed, compulsively watchable, sympathetic doc…”—Globe & Mail

Aboriginal / First Nations, Crime, Environment, Literary (inc. Adaptations), VIFF Impact
Duration: 87 mins
Country of Origin: UK,Canada, 2015
Series:
Arts and Letters

Renowned Canadian film and video installation artist Mark Lewis takes us on a tour of art and architecture that transports us from Toronto to São Paolo to Paris’ Musée du Louvre. Likened to the great city symphony films of the silent era, Lewis’ new work is at once mesmerizingly beautiful, technically awe-inspiring and intellectually challenging. As the Louvre (which commissioned a series from him that has been on exhibition this past year) put it, Lewis’ work "suggests that film came before cinematographic technology, invented in the eye of the viewer."

Fine Arts or Theatre, Filmmaking, Hidden Pasts, Digital Furures

UK, France, Germany, Malaysia, Thailand

(Rak Ti Khonkaen)
Duration: 121 mins
Country of Origin: UK,France,Germany,Malaysia,Thailand, 2015
Series:
Dragons & Tigers

Somewhere in Isan, in Thailand’s Deep Northeast, an ancient royal cemetery is being disturbed by developers. Nearby a school pressed into service as an army hospital houses soldiers with a mysterious sleeping sickness. What’s the connection? Apichatpong’s inimitable mix of dream, fact and speculative fiction teases out the answer, with some steely political implications. Very different in tone and style from Uncle Boonmee, but no less haunting. Tony Rayns

Politics

UK, Italy, France, Switzerland

(La Giovinezza)
Duration: 118 mins
Country of Origin: UK,Italy,France,Switzerland, 2015
Series:
Special Presentations

Michael Caine, Harvey Keitel and Rachel Weisz anchor Paolo Sorrentino’s gorgeous follow-up to The Great Beauty. Fred (Caine), a retired composer, and friend Mick (Keitel), a film director, are sojourning in a stunning Swiss alpine spa. Surrounded by bodies old and young, supple and sagging, they reconsider their pasts—while Sorrentino choreographs the action with exquisite control. "Sorrentino’s… brightly effusive visual imagination can be intoxicating…"—New York Times

Drama, Filmmaking, Style in Film

UK, France, Greece, Ireland, Netherlands

Duration: 118 mins
Country of Origin: UK,France,Greece,Ireland,Netherlands, 2015
Series:
Cinema of Our Time

The pressures of courtship are pushed to absurdist extremes in this outrageous comedy from Yorgos Lanthimos (Dogtooth). Confined to an isolated resort, singles (including Colin Farrell) must take a mate within 45 days or be transformed into animals. As Farrell falls in with a band of rebel loners (who count Rachel Weisz among their members), Lanthimos wrings much pathos from his outlandish premise. “A wickedly funny, unexpectedly moving satire… Perversely romantic…”—Variety

Comedy

UK, Turkey

Duration: 90 mins
Country of Origin: UK,Turkey, 2015
Series:
Arts and Letters

Following his Patience (After Sebald), visual essayist Grant Gee turns his lens toward another great writer, Turkey’s Orhan Pamuk, and to Istanbul and the museum—both actual and fictional—that Pamuk created there. Simon Schama describes this Museum of Innocence as "the single most powerfully beautiful, humane and affecting work of contemporary art anywhere in the world." It has inspired this beguiling film which turns cinema back to its roots in dreams, visions, the search for meaning and communal memorialization.

Fine Arts or Theatre, Filmmaking, Hidden Pasts, Digital Furures, Literary (inc. Adaptations), Romance

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