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Film Festival Series

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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.

Andrew Haigh

Duration: 93 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2015
Series:
Cinema of Our Time
Director: Andrew Haigh

Showtimes

Sep 25 11:00 am
Oct 03 12:30 pm
Oct 06 06:15 pm

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.

Grímur Hákonarson

(Hrútar)
Duration: 90 mins
Country of Origin: Denmark,Iceland, 2015
Series:
Cinema of Our Time
Director: Grímur Hákonarson

Showtimes

Sep 25 12:30 pm
Oct 01 06:15 pm
Oct 03 11:00 am

In this enchanting Icelandic export, two estranged, unmarried brothers are reunited after 40 years when an infectious disease threatens to decimate their prized flocks of sheep. As they face financial ruin and emotional devastation (their love for these animals is endearingly evident), Grímur Hákonarson fashions a richly detailed tragicomedy concerning idiosyncratic vocations and immediately relatable sibling dynamics. “Wonderfully wry, charmingly understated…”—Variety

Animals, Audience Award Winners, Drama, Family Relations

Jenna Hambrook

Duration: 9 mins
Country of Origin: Canada, 2015
Series:
Canadian Shorts
Director: Jenna Hambrook

Showtimes

Oct 01 09:15 pm
Oct 08 04:30 pm

The only thing standing between Micky and her first orgasm are some misguided ideas about healthy female sexuality.

Mirek Hamet

Duration: 15 mins
Country of Origin: Canada, 2015
Series:
Canadian Shorts
Director: Mirek Hamet

In this reinterpretation of the myth, Salome composes a piece of electroacoustic music centred on the sound of the male orgasm.

Hashiguchi Ryosuke

(Koibito-tachi)
Duration: 140 mins
Country of Origin: Japan, 2015
Series:
Dragons & Tigers
Director: Hashiguchi Ryosuke

Showtimes

Sep 30 09:00 pm
Oct 02 10:30 am

Hashiguchi has likely given more pleasure to VIFF audiences over the years than any other Japanese director, and this is his crowning achievement to date: three interwoven tales of individuals learning to cope when love slips through their fingers. The protagonists are a bereaved bridge-repairman, an unhappy housewife with creative ambitions and an elite gay lawyer. Wildly funny in parts, but the overall tone is worldly and very wise. Tony Rayns

Comedy, Romance

Virginia Heath

Duration: 75 mins
Country of Origin: UK, 2014
Series:
Hidden Pasts, Digital Futures
Director: Virginia Heath

Showtimes

Sep 27 06:00 pm
Sep 29 03:45 pm

Unearthing a treasure trove of archival footage, Virginia Heath’s montage film offers a kaleidoscopic tour of mid-20th century Scotland. As we glimpse evocative vignettes of labour and leisure, protests and parades, strife and revelry, we enter a world seemingly conjured from the realms of fantasy rather than reels of found footage. And playing throughout are King Creosote’s lush chamber pop songs, which lend a captivating sense of lore to every scene and heighten the film’s intimacy. "An immersive, moving and, at times, truly magical window on the past…"—Guardian

Black & White is back!, Hidden Pasts, Digital Furures, History, Music & Arts

N.C. Heikin

Duration: 84 mins
Country of Origin: USA, 2014
Series:
Arts and Letters
Director: N.C. Heikin

Showtimes

Sep 28 04:30 pm
Oct 04 06:30 pm

Not familiar with Frank Morgan? He was Charlie Parker’s protégé and played with Billie Holiday. His father always said that Frank was “the best sax player in the world. But…” That “but” concealed a multitude of sins: bank robbery, larceny, forgery and burglary. Instead of a career, he had a habit. This music documentary includes a high-power tribute concert, fascinating insights into jazz and race in the 50s, musical lore, and interviews with Gary Giddins, Michael Connelly, Ron Carter, Clora Bryant and Delfeayo Marsalis.

Biography, Music & Arts

Florian Heinzen-Ziob

Duration: 95 mins
Country of Origin: Germany, 2015
Series:
Hidden Pasts, Digital Futures
Director: Florian Heinzen-Ziob

Showtimes

Sep 29 10:45 am
Oct 01 08:45 pm

Like his father before him, Sheikh Rehman has spent a lifetime designing and painting Bollywood film posters for Mumbai’s ancient Alfred Talkies cinema. His huge banners teem with the energy and action one expects from the films themselves. But times are changing—the Alfred Talkies’ audience is dwindling and plastic posters are becoming the norm… Florian Heinzen-Ziob and Georg Heinzen’s alternately vibrant and elegiac film holds focus on the colourful Rehman, a real artist who energetically plies his trade even as the only life he has known disappears around him.

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

Kathleen Hepburn

Duration: 19 mins
Country of Origin: Canada, 2015
Series:
Canadian Shorts
Director: Kathleen Hepburn

Showtimes

Oct 01 09:15 pm
Oct 08 04:30 pm

Overwhelmed by past mistakes, a young man returns home and finds solace in the strength of his recently widowed mother.

Mauro Herce

Duration: 74 mins
Country of Origin: Spain,France, 2015
Series:
Cinema of Our Time
Director: Mauro Herce

Showtimes

Sep 27 01:15 pm
Sep 29 07:00 pm

An immersive experience that casts a hypnotic spell, Mauro Herce’s sui generis drama can be read as an allegory for late capitalism or taken at face value as a haunting look at the freighter Fair Lady and its Filipino crew on a mission that only comes to light when a natural disaster occurs. Awash in reds and greens, the film gives off an otherworldly glow—we could just as easily be ensconced in a spaceship on a science-fiction journey… Transfixing.

Experimental & Avant garde

Julio Hernández Cordón

(Te prometo anarquía)
Duration: 88 mins
Country of Origin: Mexico,Germany, 2015
Series:
Cinema of Our Time
Director: Julio Hernández Cordón

Showtimes

Oct 02 09:30 pm
Oct 08 01:30 pm

Middle-class Miguel (Diego Calva) and barrio-dweller Johnny (Eduardo Martínez) are young lovers who finance their skateboarding lifestyles by selling their blood—and the blood of others—to underground clinics in Mexico City. One day they take on a delivery for some gangsters and things go wrong… Meshing a romance, an ultra-realistic depiction of the skate scene and some noirish tropes, Julio Hernández Cordón’s beautifully shot drama takes young love to the limit…

Crime, Film Noir

Luis Hernández de la Peña

Duration: 17 mins
Country of Origin: Mexico, 2015
Series:
International Shorts
Director: Luis Hernández de la Peña

Showtimes

Sep 30 06:45 pm
Oct 04 03:45 pm

A day in the life of José María, a bus driver/drag-queen-performer/family man utterly comfortable in the contradictory worlds he lives in.

Queer Interest

Nathan Hertz

Duration: 13 mins
Country of Origin: USA, 2015
Series:
International Shorts
Director: Nathan Hertz

Showtimes

Sep 30 06:45 pm
Oct 04 03:45 pm

A poetic folk tale of two scientists sampling deformities around Chernobyl, guided by a Ukrainian folk choir and the spirits of an irradiated forest.

Drama

Hirabayashi Isamu

Duration: 25 mins
Country of Origin: Japan, 2015
Series:
Dragons & Tigers
Director: Hirabayashi Isamu

Showtimes

Sep 27 06:30 pm
Sep 29 01:30 pm

Miss Sumida is acting in a TV ad for an impoverished company and a demonic boss. But what’s wrong with the octopus? (TR)

Hong Sangsoo

(Jigeummeun Matgo Geuddaeneun Leullida)
Duration: 121 mins
Country of Origin: South Korea, 2015
Series:
Dragons & Tigers
Director: Hong Sangsoo

Showtimes

Sep 25 06:30 pm
Sep 28 04:30 pm

What’s right, what’s wrong in relationships, especially when you’re married and edging towards an act of adultery? Hong’s scintillating new film offers two antithetical versions of events over two days and one night in Suwon, a town near Seoul. A man arrives a day early for an appointment and kills time flirting with a painter and her friends. The situation makes for another wry comedy of manners, laced with heavy drinking and regrets. Tony Rayns

Romance

Vanessa Hope

Duration: 90 mins
Country of Origin: USA,China, 2015
Series:
Nonfiction Features
Director: Vanessa Hope

Showtimes

Sep 27 06:45 pm
Sep 29 01:30 pm

Jon Huntsman, Jr., US ambassador to China from 2009-2011, his adopted Chinese-American daughter Gracie, and blind Chinese activist and self-taught lawyer Chen Guangcheng are the very human faces of Vanessa Hope’s penetrating examination of US-China relations. Hope ambitiously ties their stories together as she delineates the issues of security, financial imbalances and human rights that are at the core of the current relationship between the two nations. That she does so with skill and humanity makes this not only a timely film but one that is essential viewing.

Economics & Globalization, Human Rights & Social Justice, Politics, VIFF Impact

Hunter Hopewell

Duration: 4 mins
Country of Origin: USA, 2015
Series:
International Shorts
Director: Hunter Hopewell

Showtimes

Oct 01 12:30 pm
Oct 04 09:00 pm

A determined photographer encounters a seemingly insurmountable string of obstacles…

Slávek Horák

(Domaci pece)
Duration: 92 mins
Country of Origin: Czech Republic,Slovak Republic, 2015
Series:
Cinema of Our Time
Director: Slávek Horák

Showtimes

Oct 07 06:15 pm
Oct 08 03:30 pm

Appealing and affecting, Home Care is a humanist tale that puts a poignant spin on that perennial staple of Czech cinema, the village dramedy. When a selfless home-care nurse (Alena Mihulová) suddenly requires care herself, she, her family and patients must redefine their roles and relationships. Written and performed to perfection, Slávek Horák’s tragicomic film captures the details of small-town life through piquant observation. “Wryly humorous and bittersweet…”—Variety

Comedy, Health, Disabilities & Mortality, Women’s Issues.

Hou Hsiao-hsien

(Nie Yinniang)
Duration: 105 mins
Country of Origin: Taiwan, 2015
Series:
Special Presentations
Director: Hou Hsiao-hsien

Showtimes

Sep 30 06:30 pm
Oct 05 02:00 pm

A masterpiece of world cinema, Hou Hsiao-hsien’s exquisitely beautiful swordplay fantasy is both an instant classic and a profound work of art. Trained assassin Nie Yinniang (superstar Shu Qi) is compelled by her master to assassinate her childhood sweetheart, Governor Tian Ji’an (Chang Chen), but her assignment becomes increasingly morally ambiguous. Bursts of swordplay; soul-infused landscapes; the silence of philosophy. Wuxia cinema distilled to its essence. Shelly Kraicer

Fine Arts or Theatre, Women’s Issues.

Jason Lei Howden

Duration: 86 mins
Country of Origin: New Zealand, 2015
Series:
Altered States
Director: Jason Lei Howden

Showtimes

Oct 03 11:00 pm
Oct 07 04:00 pm

Wild, irreverent and delightfully gory, Jason Lei Howden’s Deathgasm follows in the footsteps of Kiwi splatter comedy classics like Dead Alive. Languishing in a backwater, Brodie (Milo Cawthorne) finds salvation when he forms a band with Zakk (James Blake) who shares his love of the devil’s music. Alas, when the metal heads uncover an ancient piece of tablature, they likewise unleash something unholy. Left with no other recourse, they apply corpse paint and orchestrate the most outrageous kill scenes in recent memory. “The party movie of 2015.”—Bloody Disgusting

Audience Award Winners, Comedy, Fantasy, Sci-fi & Horror

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