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Hieronymus Bosch, Touched by the Devil

(2015, 86 mins, DCP)
In English, Dutch with English subtitles


Sep 09 06:30 pm
Sep 10 08:30 pm
Sep 11 04:45 pm
Sep 12 06:30 pm
Sep 13 06:30 pm
Sep 15 08:30 pm

Famous for his still shocking paintings of hell, Dutch painter Hieronymous Bosch died 500 years ago. This late-medieval artist caused uproar with his fantastical and utterly uniquely diabolical work. In preparation for a special exhibition at the Noordbrabants Museum in the city of Den where Bosch lived, a team of Dutch art historians crisscross the globe to unravel the secrets of his art. Pieter van Huystee tracks down his 25 or so surviving paintings, recording the meticulous work of archivists to definitively attribute the work to the artist (10 family members painted) as well as the snarky jousting by Dutch and Spanish curators over granting access to the masterpieces. (The Garden of Earthly Delights has not left Spain in 400 years and it’s not about to anytime soon.) They use special infrared cameras to examine the sketches beneath the paint, in the hope of discovering more about the artist’s intentions.

"The diabolical visions of Bosch remain beguiling and more popular than ever." The New York Times


(2014, 112 mins, DCP)
CAST David Hockney
Classification: 19+


Sep 06 02:30 pm
Sep 07 06:30 pm

There’s nothing pompous or pretentious in this endearingly candid, insightful and inspiring portrait of the British artist who found his true home – and made A Bigger Splash — in Los Angeles in the 1960s. A spry, wry septuagenarian, David Hockney committed fully to the process, and his trust is rewarded with a warm and sympathetic film that should win him new admirers.

The boy from Bradford (his sister takes us around their working-class childhood home and fondly recalls early signs) never wanted for courage or conviction. There are anecdotes aplenty about his brio – the determination to go blond and have more fun, for instance – but the film’s greatest pleasure is just looking again at his work, and listening to this always curious, fluent, fluid artist musing on space, perspective, color and, for instance, the difference between photography (which freezes a fraction of time and takes longer to look at than it took in reality) and painting (which involves intense scrutiny and re-examination over a prolonged time). "It took me a week just to paint the splash…"

Director’s Statement (Randall Wright):

I wanted to create a strong sense of place in the two very different landscape that David calls home – the vast bright spaces of California, and the moody hills of East Yorkshire. The creative push and pull of these absolute opposite environments energizes David’s constant search for answers, both creative and personal. Also digital cinema is now brilliant for reproducing painting. The color accuracy, and image resolution is breathtaking. David’s paintings look stunning on the big screen. As David would be quick to point out, the two mediums, cinema and painting have a much closer relationship in the twentieth century than people realize. After the Second World War European humanist filmmakers saw themselves as continuing the figurative tradition of oil painting. And films were always significant to David. He moved to the Hollywood Hills, he befriended Billy Wilder, and of course he has experimented with films for the last thirty years, resulting in his recent multi-screen movies. Some of his latest paintings are massive and in a widescreen format. For me cinema offers the opportunity to deal with an artist in a very down to earth way, without commentary and the standard art world experts. In the dark we can really focus on powerful images without interruptions.

Boris sans Beatrice

(2016, 93 mins, DCP)
In French with English subtitles
CAST James Hyndman, Simone Elise-Gerard, Denis Lavant, Isolda Dychauk, Dounia Sichov, Laetitia Isambert-Denis, Louise Laprade, Bruce LaBruce
Classification: 19+


Sep 02 06:30 pm
Sep 03 08:50 pm
Sep 06 06:30 pm
Sep 08 06:30 pm

After Curling, Vic + Flo Saw a Bear and Bestiare, Denis Côté is firmly established as one of the most original and daring filmmakers on the Quebec scene. His latest feature represents another step forward in accomplishment, and perhaps, towards the mainstream. It’s a psychological thriller, a portrait of a successful businessman whose arrogance slowly begins to crumble under the duress of coping with his wife’s breakdown.

Is her mute passivity actually a form of protest? Or is it a kind of karmic payback for Boris’s infidelities, greed, and narcissism? That’s the disturbing claim of a strange messenger (played by Leos Carax-favourite Denis Lavant) who encroaches on Boris’s country retreat. Once he gets the idea inside his head, he can’t shake it out - and his enviable existence starts to seem uncomfortably empty…

Both a seemingly straightforward tale and an oddly enigmatic fable which draws on Greek mythology, Boris sans Beatrice could be seen as class satire, but it’s more rewarding - if more challenging - to acknowledge some affinities with the privileged, complacent Boris than simply to condemn him out of hand. He may be a cold fish but his insistence on confronting the world on his own terms is a common failing, after all. Atmospheric, cooly paced, and artfully composed, the movie casts quite a spell.

"Utterly original." **** Brendan Kelly, Montreal Gazette

"Really compelling." **** Norm Wilner, Now magazine

Glauber Rocha x2: Black God, White Devil & Entranced Earth

(Vancouver Latin American Film Festival @ VIFF Vancity Theatre)
(240 mins)
In Portugese with English subtitles
Classification: 19+


Aug 30 06:30 pm

Screens in program Glauber Rocha x2: Black God, White Devil & Entranced Earth


"Cinema Novo is the creative synthesis of Brazilian international popular cinema." - Glauber Rocha

Co-presented by VIFF Vancity Theatre and the Vancouver Latin American Film Festival. Tickets are available from and on the door.

Glauber Rocha (b. 1939, Vitória da Conquista, Bahia, Brazil) was a key figure in the Cinema Novo movement, a subversive and innovative film movement of the 1960s in Brazil. He directed two of the most influential Brazilian films of all times, Deus e o diabo na terra do sol (Black God, White Devil, 1964) and Terra em transe (Entranced Earth, 1967), which was initially banned from screening in Brazil for its allegorical depiction of oppression that reflected closely on the reality of oppression in Brazil after the military coup d’état of 1964. Still today, these two films are considered to be some of the greatest works in Brazilian film history.

Glauber Rocha, a law student who turned to film criticism and left-wing politics, was only 21 years old when his first film Barravento (The Turning Wind) was included in the first New York Film Festival in 1961. He achieved significant recognition in Europe in 1964, when his film Black God, White Devil premiered at the Cannes Film Festival and was nominated for the Palme d’Or. In 1967, he received the Luis Buñuel and FIPRESCI Awards at the Cannes Film Festival for Entranced Earth, and in 1969, he won the Best Director Award for Antonio das Mortes.

Rocha went into voluntary exile after the right-wing military coup, but later returned to Brazil to support the government’s plan to restore democratic processes.

In a 1971 interview in Le Monde of Paris, Rocha stated, “My Brazilian films belong to a whole period when my generation was full of wild dreams and hopes. They are full of enthusiasm, faith and militancy and were inspired by my great love of Brazil.’’


Deus e o diabo na terra do sol


120 min.

Set in the drought-plagued Brazilian Sertão in 1940, Black God, White Devil explores the climate of superstition, physical and spiritual terrorism, and fear that gripped the country. The central characters, Manuel and Rosa, are on the run, and move credulously from allegiance to allegiance until they finally learn that the land belongs neither to god nor devil, but to the people themselves. The film’s storyline, somewhere between folk ballad and contemporary myth, contains a multitude of references to Brazilian history and culture. But Rocha’s project is fundamentally political, and completely unambiguous: he faces up to the contradictions of his country in an effort to understand, to crush mystiques, and to improve it.


Terra em transe


110 min

Eldorado, a fictitious country in Latin America, is churning with an internal struggle for political power. In the eye of this social convulsion, the jaded journalist and anarchist poet Paulo Martins opposes two equally corrupt political candidates: a pseudopopulist and a conservative. In this context, Paulo is torn between the madness of the elite and the blind submission of the masses. But, in this complex tropical reality, nothing really is what it seems to be.

The Waiting Room

(2015, 92 mins, DCP)
In English, Bosnian/ Serbo-Croatian with English subtitles
CAST Jasmin Geljo, Masa Lizdek, Filip Geljo
Classification: 19+


Jasmin, once a successful actor in former Yugoslavia, now lives in Toronto with his second wife and young son. While juggling a construction job and a busy audition schedule, he dreams of re-launching an old televised stage show that made him famous in his homeland. When he is cast in a role that triggers recollections of the civil war, he is forced to reconcile his current reality with memories of his past success.

"Dominated by a unique blend of melancholy and existential crisis, "The Waiting Room" is a poignant character study about the immigrant experience. B+" Eric Kohn, Indiewire

Rumble Fish

(1983, 94 mins, DCP)
CAST Matt Dillon, Mickey Rourke, Diane Lane, Dennis Hopper, Nicholas Cage, Vincent Spano, Tom Waits


Francis Coppola’s second take on an SE Hinton teen novel is in a very different register to The Outsiders: it’s an expressionistic, Wellesian urban art film dealing in icons, symbols and a syncopated percussive score by Stewart Copeland of The Police. Matt Dillon and Mickey Rourke star as brothers Rusty James and the Motorcycle Boy respectively, along with a very young Diane Lane and Nicolas Cage (and not forgetting "Domino", aka Sofia Coppola).

"Rumble Fish is Coppola’s professional suicide note to the movie industry, a warning against employing him to find the golden gross. No doubt: this is his most baroque and self-indulgent film. It may also be his bravest." Richard Corliss, Time

"Francis Coppola, bless his theatrical soul, may have the commercial sense of a newt, but he has the heart of a revolutionary, and the talent of a great artist." Jay Scott, Globe and Mail

"Offbeat, daring, and utterly original." Roger Ebert