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Vancity Theatre Screening

With the permission of screenwriter, star and singer Nick Cave, we’re thrilled to offer this special advance screening of his latest work, a not entirely plausible record of a day in the life of the man himself.

“Incredible. Puts most music films to shame. So inventive and inspiring.”Dave Calhoun, Time Out

“Probably best music doc I’ve ever seen… so much more than music. Beautifully made”Wendy Mitchell, Screen International

UK, Japan

IBFF 2013 Vancouver (International Buddhist Film Festival)

A mysterious and engaging journey through sound, song, story, ritual, performance, nature, tradition and Japanese Buddhism… A fearless merging of medieval and modern, beautifully filmed with a variety of cinematic techniques on location in Japan. “Kanzeon” is another way of saying Kannon (Chinese: Kuanyin), the embodiment of compassion, and can also be written in Japanese as “to see sounds.”

"Stunning to look at… mesmerising musical sequences”

Frances Morgan, Sight and Sound

"A stunning new British documentary.”

Jasper Sharp, Midnight Eye

UK Ireland

Vancity Theatre Screening

In 2008, 18 climbers from a party of 24 reached the summit of the world’s second highest mountain, the treacherous K2. 48 hours later, 11 were dead, or had simply vanished. What happened? Nick Ryan weaves together found footage, eerie reenactments and interviews with survivors to try and solve this tragic mystery.

"Riveting. Gripping. Thrilling." Indiewire

"A gripping cliffhanger. A heart-throbbing experience." Hollywood Reporter

GB, USA

SPARK FX

Based on Arthur C Clarke’s short story ‘The Sentinel’, 2001: A Space Odyssey redefined the sci-fi genre. With its radical structure (a single cut elides 4 million years), scant dialogue and oblique narrative this was the first movie to emulate the philosophical seriousness of writers like Clarke and Philip K Dick, and the first to see that special effects could become an integral component in the art-form.

USA

Woody Allen Summer

A portrait of the artist that appalled his fans at the time, Stardust Memories is autobiography out of Fellini, the movie where Woody first tried to emulate the greats he admired. The public didn’t love him for it, but it’s a key picture in his own evolution and surprisingly poignant.

Vancity Theatre Screening

When 14-year-old Laura Dekker announced her intention to become the youngest woman ever to sail around the world single-handedly there was an uproar. The child welfare authorities in her native Holland even applied to block her trip on legal grounds. But their case was rejected, and Laura set off soon afterwards on her beloved boat Guppy, with no safety boat or backup, but a video camera to record her odyssey. This film is the result of that impulse - a first-person mariner’s eye-view of a vast blue world

Woody Allen: Spring Collection

What’s old, pussycat? Allen’s first produced screenplay did not turn out the way he wanted, but this swung-out nineteen sexties farce is at the very least a fascinating time capsule, so chauvinist it would make Austin Powers blush. But get a load of that cast! Peters O’Toole and Sellers, Romy Schneider, Paula Prentiss, Ursula Andress and Woody too.

Vancity Theatre Screening

Classified PG. Under-19s welcome with adult accompaniment.

Perhaps you remember Tilikum? The killer whale was a star attraction at Oak Bay, British Columbia’s Sealand of the Pacific park from 1983 to 1992 - when he was shipped out to SeaWorld in Orlando, Florida. The sale took place shortly after the tragic death of a trainer, Keltie Byrne, who slipped and fell into the pool. Although Tilikum was officially exonerated from the death, eye-witnesses tell a very different story. And as filmmaker Gabriela Cowperthwaite discovered, this was not to be the last human death associated with the bull orca.

"Blackfish has the capacity to stand the test of time as a gripping documentary synonymous with changing the way people see both killer whales and the multi-billion dollar industry that continues to exploit killer whales as playful tourist attractions" Daniel Pratt, exclaim

"A mesmerizing psychological thriller with a bruised and battered killer whale at its center." Variety

"Has the potential to take our society on the first step in the right direction." Alex Koehne, Twitch

For over forty years, America’s "War on Drugs" has accounted for 45 million arrests, made America the world’s largest jailer, and damaged poor communities at home and abroad. Yet for all that, drugs in America are cheaper, purer, and more available today than ever before. Perhaps it’s time to call a ceasefire?

"Searing… One of the most important pieces of non-fiction to hit the screen in years." LA Times

"Fearless… A model of the ambitious, vitalizing activist work that exists to stir the sleeping to wake." New York Times

Woody Allen Summer

One of Allen’s best in recent times, this is a funny, wise movie about young Americans abroad, bohemia, sensuality, and the gaudy delights of Barcelona. Contrasting performances from Jamon, Jamon couple Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz complete the package.

"Vicky Cristina Barcelona trips along winningly, carried by the beauty of its locations and stars - and all the gauzy romanticism those enchanted places and people imply."Manohla Dargis, New York Times

"The actors are attractive, the city is magnificent, the love scenes don’t get all sweaty, and everybody finishes the summer a little wiser and with a lifetime of memories. What more could you ask?"Roger Ebert

Coenpalooza!

A curtain-raiser for tomorrow’s Coen Bros marathon: the brothers’ first movie, a delectably twisted film noir set in modern day (well, mid 80s) Texas, where Marty (Hedaya) doesn’t much care for the fact that his wife Abby (McDormand) is playing around behind his back. This is one of the great debut films, bursting with malicious wit and style, with an unforgettable performance from character actor M Emmett Walsh as a private dick with a very personal notion of ethics.

"It’s the boys’ most immediately gratifying movie: The goods are delivered in a hearse." Wesley Morris, San Francisco Examiner

"A tight, beautifully ugly neo-noir classic." Kim Morgan, Portland Oregonian

"As black, sinful and nasty as a weekful of Hitchcocks, this is as fresh and intoxicating now as it was back then. In a word: deadly." Ian Nathan, Empire

Woody Allen: Spring Collection

The movie where it all came together for Woody Allen, Annie Hall marks both the culmination of his ’early, funny’ period, and the first of his mature, more overtly serious and autobiographical films as writer-director. Winner: Academy Awards for Best Picture, Direction, Screenplay, Best Actress.

"One of Allen’s funniest, and most touching films." Saul Austerlitz, Another FIne Mess

"Woody Allen’s breakthrough movie." Time

"Arguably Allen’s most honest film." 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die

Vancity Theatre Screening

Our tribute to the late, great James Gandolfini consists of two recent feature films, both released at the tail end of last year, neither of which found the audience they deserved. The first feature written and directed by Sopranos creator David Chase, Not Fade Away is an overtly autobiographical piece about a young man (newcomer John Magaro) trying to make it in rock n roll in the 1960s. Gandolfini has a relatively small yet crucial role, as the young man’s conservative father, dismayed by his boy’s directionless. It’s a part that could have been clichéd, but Gandolfini invests his scenes with such expert comic timing and emotion, he transcends any such traps. Reminiscent of Barry Levinson’s Diner, Not Fade Away is a personal movie in the best sense, true and honest and lived in, and Gandolfini has much to do with that.

"A warm, funny, poignant scrapbook." Hollywood Reporter

"A gritty, graceful salute to rock and roll." Rolling Stone

DOCside

"Peter Nicks’s magnificent documentary spends a day in the life of an over-crowded and under-resourced hospital emergency room in Oakland, Calif., where a staff of compassionate professionals provide care to a startlingly diverse population of patients. This subtle, compassionate tableau lifts the veil on a world often described in terms of squalor and despair, finding the inherent dignity and perseverance therein." Ann Hornaday, Washington Post

"Peter Nicks’s magnificent documentary spends a day in the life of an over-crowded and under-resourced hospital emergency room in Oakland, Calif., where a staff of compassionate professionals provide care to a startlingly diverse population of patients. This subtle, compassionate tableau lifts the veil on a world often described in terms of squalor and despair, finding the inherent dignity and perseverance therein." Ann Hornaday, Washington Post

"Documentarian Peter Nicks had extraordinary access to the people in and around the waiting room of a public hospital in Oakland. But what makes this a classic, and a work of art and not journalism, is his taste, his poetic touches and his talent for understatement." Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle

Vancity Theatre Screening

On the occasion of the release of Richard Linklater’s most adventurous and rewarding work - Boyhood - check out this wonderful conversation piece between the independent-minded Austinite and the even more marginalized James Benning, an experimental artist who some rank as the finest filmmaker in America today.

Double Play is the kind of film to make cinephiles grateful, if only to preserve for the ages the ruminations of two artists whose shared project has been nothing less than the excavation of the American spirit itself."—Ann Hornaday, Washington Post

"Like Linklater’s movies, including BoyhoodDouble Play is loaded with thought-provoking dialogue, including meditations on time, relationships and the challenges of staying true to one’s artistic muse."—Rob Nelson, Star Tribune

Vancity Theatre Screening

The first in a double bill featuring two of the most highly acclaimed US features of the year, Before Midnight is Richard Linklater’s bittersweet study of a love affair languishing in middle-age - his follow up to generational touchstones Before Sunrise and Before Sunset.

Before Midnight is a wonderful paradox: a movie passionately committed to the ideal of imperfection that is itself very close to perfect." AO Scott, New York Times

Woody Allen: Spring Collection

Recently transformed into a Broadway musical, this is a fizzy satire on the pretensions, hypocrisies and indulgences of theatre folk. John Cusack is an idealistic young playwright whose big break is backed by a mobster boss with his own ideas about casting….

"One of Allen’s best and most revealing comedies, as much a moral meditation as it is dazzling fun." Rolling Stone

Vancity Theatre Screening

Inexplicably repudiated by most critics and audiences last year, Killing Them Softly is ripe for rediscovery, a highly stylized, caustic satire which uses a hired killer (Brad Pitt) as an emblem for the last word in private enterprise. Based on George V Higgins’ novel Cogan’s Trade, but updated to the economic meltdown (and Presidential election campaign) of 2008, and set in a mildewed, post Katrina New Orleans, the movie may be the last great film noir. Gandolfini is at his very best as another professional killer, a bloated, vicious, self-pitying wreck of a man, perhaps the ghost of Coogan’s Future.

"Andrew Dominik’s Killing Them Softly is a slick ensemble-nightmare of middle-management mobster brutality and incompetence in the tradition of Goodfellas and Casino, Pulp Fiction and TV’s The Sopranos, with something of the opening voiceover monologue from the Coens’ Blood Simple: the one about being on your own. It is outstandingly watchable, superbly and casually pessimistic… a smart, nasty, gripping movie." Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

Vancity Theatre Screening

With unexpected humor, with an unflinching camera, with some guilt and some pain, this film takes the unusual risk of examining what breast milk truly means. We are often told that breast milk is better. Better for babies, better for mothers, better for nutrition, health, well-being, and society. Many accept this and yet there are still very few women who succeed in breastfeeding exclusively for the recommended six months and beyond. What would it take to change?

"There are Portlandia-worthy moments amid the talk of breast pumps, latching and engorgement, and also surprising insights with implications beyond the nursery."Sheri Linden, LA Times

"Gently affecting and insightful."Variety

Australia, USA

In 60s Australia, John Grant (Gary Bond), is an Education Department bonded teacher at a tiny outback school. Making his way to Sydney for the holidays, John takes the train but stops overnight in Bundayabba.

Drawn into the ’Yabba’s’ culture of drinking and gambling, he becomes embroiled in the locals’ insular and threatening world.

""Wake in Fright" is a film made in Australia in 1971 and almost lost forever. It’s not dated. It is powerful, genuinely shocking and rather amazing. It comes billed as a "horror film" and contains a great deal of horror, but all of the horror is human and brutally realistic."

- Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

"Combining elements of Heart of Darkness, After Hours, and Groundhog Day, Ted Kotcheff’s brutally brilliant Outback thriller follows the moral degradation, or perhaps redemption, of a snooty schoolteacher (Gary Bond) traveling from the backwater where he’s assigned to Sydney for his Christmas vacation. But along the way he gets stranded in "the city," Bundanyabba, where he loses his money in a backroom game of chance and must rely on the contemptuous hospitality of the local yokels […]Kotcheff’s masterpiece (he later did First Blood), it orchestrates landscape, music, demonic faces, and lots of blood, sweat, and vomit into a stark bacchanalia of men having fun." Peter Keough, Boston Phoenix

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