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Walter Salles and Daniela Thomas

The Beautiful Game
Director: Walter Salles and Daniela Thomas

Walter Salles (Motorcycle Diaries; On the Road; Central Station) collaborates with Daniela Thomas on this neo-realist drama about a mother and her four sons struggling to find their way in the favela of Sao Paulo. The son with the brightest prospects is a potential soccer star, but at 18, he’s all too aware that time is running out. As for his siblings, they have more than enough troubles of their own…

"A beguiling blend of urban poetry and extremely well-observed social realism."Wally Hammond, Time Out

"The film’s title refers to the line of players down which the ball is passed when all are playing properly together. It could hardly be more appropriate for a film that confirms that the unflashy virtues of teamwork are as vital in cinema as they are in life."Paul Julian Smith, Sight & Sound

Antonello Sarno

(Federico degli spiriti)
Italian Film Festival
Director: Antonello Sarno

Maestro Federico Fellini died just over 20 years ago, 31 October 1993. His passing - and the star-studded funeral that followed three days later - inspired one of the first great media events of the new electronic age, a circus of celebrity, culture, imagery and emotion that Fellini probably enjoyed from on high. This new documentary brings those moments back to life again with the help of Fellini’s friends, colleagues and admirers.

Jeremy Saulnier

Vancity Theatre Screening
Director: Jeremy Saulnier

Critics have been pulling out comparisons to the Coens for this lean, mean revenge thriller, a scintillating debut by writer-director Jeremy Saulnier (it’s currently 100% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes). Living a seemingly pointless existence, Dwight suddenly snaps into action when he learns of the imminent release of state prisoner, Will Cleland. With a score to settle he returns to his home town, swapping the big blue for bloodshed. Delighting lovers of genre film and American Indie, Blue Ruin’s filmmaking is clean and efficient but the killing isn’t. Thrilling, devastating and even humiliating at times, Dwight’s plight manages to hit the sweet spot between idiot and amateur, predator and prey.

"Easily the most suspenseful American film of the year, a thriller that feels like lightning across a quiet night sky; sudden, terrifying, and excitingly singular." Gabe Toro, The Playlist

"Intelligent and thrilling. Recalls the dark wit of the Coens." 4 stars Total Film

"A feral and staggeringly well-conceived revenge saga." David Ehrlich, Film.com

Philip Scheffner

Vancity Theatre Screening
Director: Philip Scheffner

"A beautiful experimental film… I was crying at the end." The People’s Paper (India)

"The Halfmoon Files is a gift – a generous gift and an invitation. An invitation to journey to distant lands that turn out to be very close after all, to seek the unexpected, to listen to the noises of an old barrack or a landscape that gradually emerges from the fog, and to observe closely the many possible images of a voice. A film as invitation to follow ghosts and at the same time a modest but nonetheless intense call to think.” Nicole Wolf

Jillian Schlesinger

Vancity Theatre Screening
Director: Jillian Schlesinger

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

Shou-Ho

Community Events
Director: Shou-Ho

Charlie Siskel

Vancity Theatre Screening
Director: Charlie Siskel

This extraordinary documentary - one of the most popular films at VIFF last year - shuttles from New York to France to Chicago as it traces the life story of the late Vivian Maier, a career nanny whose previously unknown cache of 100,000 photographs has earned her a posthumous reputation as one of America’s most accomplished and insightful street photographers.

"Compelling… haunting… captivating." Variety

"Poignant, informative, occasionally disturbing." Globe and Mail

Lydia B Smith

Vancity Theatre Screening
Director: Lydia B Smith

Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago follows various pilgrims, from ages 3 to 73, as they attempt to cross an entire country on foot—with only a backpack, a pair of boots and an open mind. Driven by an inexplicable calling and a grand sense of adventure, we witness the Camino’s magnetic and miraculous power to change lives. Each pilgrim throws themselves heart and soul into their incredibly challenging trek to Santiago de Compostela, and most importantly, their personal journey to themselves.

"Driving both the filmmaker and her subjects is wonder and wanderlust. Their enthusiasm for the Camino is contagious ..."—Diana Clarke, Village Voice

Jeremy Snead

Vancity Theatre Screening
Director: Jeremy Snead

A short history of the video game, from Pong and Space Invaders through Super Mario Bros and Zelda to Call of Duty, Halo and GTA. Featuring a Who’s Who of video game pioneers, this nifty, celebratory doc traces the evolution of a whole new form of interactive entertainment, the consoles, the joysticks, the bits and the bytes. Along the way it slays more then a few lazy stereotypes about what games and gamers are really like.

Peter Stebbings

Vancity Theatre Screening
Director: Peter Stebbings

This affecting portrait of three generations of Cree women smacks of authenticity and truth. It’s a low-key movie about mother-daughter relationships and the way past mistakes have a way of cycling back round again no matter how hard you try to run away from them. 5 Canada Screen Awards Nominations: Best Film, Screenplay, Actress, Supporting Actress and Editing.

"Beautifully shot, newcomers Gee and Eyre are revelations, and the central theme of cultural pride is stirring and urgent." Glenn Sumi, Now Toronto

"Finely crafted… A trio of gorgeous performances from the three female leads…" Katherine Monk, Canada.com

Jennifer Steinman

Vancity Theatre Screening
Director: Jennifer Steinman

The power, intensity and drama of desert ultra-marathon racing fuels Jennifer Steinman’s emotionally charged documentary. Following a small group of very different runners competing the in the Four Desert series (the Atacama, the Gobi, the Sahara and Antarctica) the film draws us in to their lives, to understand what drives them to undertake such a grueling challenge.

Preston Sturges

Cinema Salon
Director: Preston Sturges

A couple meet on an ocean liner. Jean (Barbara Stanwyck) is a knock-out babe and a con artist. Charles (Henry Fonda) is a nerdy heir, interested in the study of snakes and about to get fleeced. Sturges’ unique gifts for directing comedy and writing witty dialogue makes this yet another of his great romantic comedies that deserves its reputation as a classic.