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Pearl Button

Program Running Time 82 min.

May 03 06:30 pm
May 05 06:30 pm

Films in Program

Directed By: Patricio Guzman
(Chile, 2015, 82 mins)

This entrancing, poetic, political documentary from the director of Nostalgia for the Light is a potent reminder of the abuses committed by the Pinochet regime, and a vivid essay on the stunning Patagonian Archipelago. "By turns lyrical, impressionistic and profound." Gary Goldstein, LA Times

Viva

Program Running Time 100 min.

May 03 08:15 pm
May 05 08:10 pm

Films in Program

Directed By: Paddy Breathnach
(Cuba, Ireland, 2015, 100 mins, DCP)

Written and directed by Irishmen in Havana, Cuba, this is an outsider’s outsiders’ story, the irresistible tale of an 18-year-old wannabe-drag artiste learning to put over a song and ultimately winning over his homophobic ex-con father. It’s a little bit Billy Elliot, and a little bit Pedro Almodovar, all shot in what one character calls, "the most beautiful slum in the world."

smalls: forever is a long time

Program Running Time 105 min.


Films in Program

Nagasaki: Memories of My Son (free screening)

(2015, 130 mins)
In Japanese with English subtitles
CAST Sayuri Yoshinaga, Kazunari Ninomiya

Showtimes

May 04 07:30 pm

Guests: Sayuri Yoshinaga and Ryuichi Sakamoto will be in attendance. 

As Nobuko (Sayuri Yoshinaga) attempts to rebuild her life in postwar Nagasaki, she is met by her son Koji (Kazunari Ninomiya) who returns from the dead. As he fades in and out of her daily life they reflect on time spent together before and during the war. Together with the animated figures who occupy the neighbourhood, the ghost of Koji enlivens Nobuko’s days and helps lead her to a state of resolution. The film poignantly depicts life in Nagasaki after the bomb and offers a perspective on prewar, wartime, and postwar Japan, loss, and hope. Directed by Yoji Yamada (Love and Honor) based on the wishes of the late writer Yasushi Inoue (Living with My Father), with music by Ryuichi Sakamoto. 

Free screening open to VIFF Vancity Theatre members ($2 annual membership available on the door). Doors from 6:45pm, screening at 7:30pm. First come-first served.

The Pearl Button

(2015, 82 mins)
In Spanish with English subtitles
Director:
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

May 03 06:30 pm
May 05 06:30 pm

GUESTS: 

Apr 30 7:00-7:45pm in the Atrium - SON BOHEMIA - Nyra Chalmer (Violin),Hector Falcon (Cajon) and Joaquin Gonzalez (Guitar.Voice) - is an ensemble that performs music from all over Latin America and Spain with a gypsy bohemian style. The vocals in their performances blend beautifully with the sound of the guitar, the violin, and the peruvian cajon and invite audiences of different cultures to an imaginary trip into the hispanic heritage


One of the most respected and admired documentary filmmakers in the world, Patricio Guzmán explores the Patagonian Archipelago and its meaning in Chilean history—from its use by Chile’s Indigenous peoples to its function as a grave site for Pinochet’s desaparecidos—in this visually stunning follow-up to 2010’s masterly Nostalgia for the Light.

Rightfully earning the film “Best Script” at the Berlinale (the rarest of awards for a documentary), Guzmán’s eloquent, entrancing narration familiarizes us with the film’s remarkable setting while drawing connections and dispensing heady concepts. With its mountains, glaciers and volcanoes, the world’s largest archipelago is practically supernatural in appearance. And bordering it is the water which contains vast reserves of memories and can give voice to the past with just the slightest coercion. Consequently, while immaculate images of ice floes and waterfalls, nebulae and quartz captivate us, it’s Guzmán’s accounts of this region’s chequered history, of native tribes tragically decimated by colonists, of political prisoners disposed of in the sea, that are the most arresting.

“Applying the same mix of lyrical nature and space imagery, voice-over narration, archive photos and footage and interviews [as in Nostalgia for the Light], the director crafts another deeply poetic but also committedly, at times even angrily, humanist meditation on buried traces of the past and how they determine our present and future as a race and as a civil society… Tools associated with fiction are used to tell the truth, and an elegant tone is deployed to disguise a righteous fury.” Lee Marshall, Screen

"By turns lyrical, impressionistic and profound." Gary Goldstein, LA Times

"Guzmán’s gorgeous documentary The Pearl Button is in a class with the other beauty-of-nature reveries like Koyannisqatsi and Baraka, but with its political overtones delivered via somber narration." Sherilyn Connelly, SF Weekly

Viva

(2015, 100 mins, DCP)
In Spanish with English subtitles
Director:
CAST Héctor Medina, Jorge Perugorría, Luis Alberto García
Classification: 19+

Showtimes

May 03 08:15 pm
May 05 08:10 pm

Written and directed by Irishmen in Havana, Cuba, this is an outsider’s outsiders’ story, the irresistible tale of an 18-year-old wannabe-drag artiste learning to put over a song and ultimately winning over his homophobic ex-con father. It’s a little bit Billy Elliot, and a little bit Pedro Almodovar, all shot in what one character calls, "the most beautiful slum in the world."

18-year-old hairdresser Jesus (Héctor Medina) helps with the wigs of the drag performers in a glamorous (to him, anyway) Havana club, and dreams of taking the stage himself. His first performances only prove he has a lot to learn, and his progress is further disrupted when his macho dad gets out of prison and insists on staying with him (in a nice touch, he’s played by Jorge Perugorría, who starred in the groundbreaking Cuban classic Strawberry and Chocolate more than 20 years ago). Breathnach’s romanticism may be a smidgeon rose-tinted, but the movie is tender and touching and leaves you wanting to pull on your gladrags and belt out a torch song.

“A genuine crowd-pleaser. All of the performances… are pitch perfect.” Stephen Farber, Hollywood Reporter

Viva is a striking blow of emotion that disarms you with the unflinching heartbreak of its transformative musical performances, the tragic humor of its world, and the passionately nuanced acting on display." Carlos Aguilar, Indiewire

"The whole city seems steeped in a vibrant, voluptuously sensual atmosphere, which is accentuated by the soundtrack: lush Cuban salsa and son from the 1940s." Wendy Ide, Screen

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