Here is the exciting line-up of 2018 films listed in alphabetical order. You can download a copy of the program with film descriptions and the schedule, by clicking here.
16 min 2017
Filmmaker: Davina Pardo
As the Holocaust survivor community ages, the Shoah Foundation, in collaboration with the University of Southern California’s Institute for Creative Technologies, has embarked on an ambitious new project to transform survivors into 3D digital holograms that will interact with generations to come. 116 Cameras follows Eva Schloss, a Holocaust survivor and stepsister of Anne Frank, as she tells her story. This creative project addresses the pressing question of what might happen when witnesses are no longer with us.
19 Paper Cranes
6 min 2017
Director: Michael Joseph
On July 25th, 2016, a young man attacked a centre for people with disabilities in Japan, killing 19 and wounding 26. He had sent a letter to the president of the Japanese Parliament expressing his belief that people with disabilities cannot be happy and can only bring misfortune to their guardians. In this film we meet Sachiko Tanaka, a woman living with an intellectual disability and a member of L’Arche in Japan. Sachiko, whose name means “child of happiness”, is making recycled paper, as she does every day. However, this time with her community, Sachiko is recycling the letter on which the murderer justified his actions. She uses the finished paper to make nineteen Origami cranes. According to Japanese tradition, the crane’s task is to carry souls to paradise. This heartwarming film is a tribute to the victims and a challenge to assumptions about people with different abilities.
Birth Of A Family
79 min 2017
Director: Tasha Hubbard
Three sisters and a brother, adopted as infants into separate families across North America, meet together for the first time in this deeply moving documentary. Removed from their young Dene mother’s care as part of Canada’s infamous Sixties Scoop, Betty Ann, Esther, Rosalie and Ben were four of the 20,000 Indigenous children taken from their families between 1955 and 1985, to be either adopted into white families or to live in foster care. As the four siblings piece together their shared history, their connection deepens, bringing laughter with it, and their family begins to take shape.
Children Of Redress
18 min 2013
Director: Greg Masuda
In 1942 the Canadian government ordered the uprooting of 22,000 men, women and children in one of the nation’s largest and cruelest dispossession and dispersals ever. A generation later, Japanese Canadians fought back – and won. Using rarely seen archival footage and interviews with members of the negotiation team including Roy Miki, Art Miki, Cassandra Kobayashi, Audrey Kobayashi, Maryka Omatsu, as well as Obasan author Joy Kogawa, Children of Redress calls on today’s generation to stand up for what is right.
98 min 2017
Director: Peter Bratt
Producer: Carlos Santana
Dolores Huerta is among the most important, yet least known, activists in American history. An equal partner in co-founding the first US farm workers’ union with Cesar Chavez, her enormous contributions have gone largely unrecognized. Dolores tirelessly led the fight for racial and labour justice alongside Chavez, becoming one of the most defiant feminists of the twentieth century. At 87, she continues the fight to this day. With intimate and unprecedented access to this intensely private mother of eleven, the film reveals the raw personal stakes involved in committing one’s life to social change. “exuberantly inspiring… makes you want to march and dance.” San Francisco Chronicle
Audience Award, San Francisco Film Festival; Best Documentary, Seattle Int’l Film Festival
The Evolution Of Organic
87 min 2017
Director: Mark Kitchell
This is the story of organic agriculture, told by those who built the movement. A motley crew of back-to-the-landers reject chemical farming and set out to explore organic alternatives. It’s a heartfelt journey of change – from a small band of rebels to a cultural transformation in the way we grow and eat food. Organic has now gone mainstream, split into an industry oriented toward bringing organic food to all people and a movement that has realized a vision of sustainable agriculture. The next generation of organic farmers is broadening their scope to include methods such as “no till” and carbon farming as a climate solution. Regenerative agriculture is the new frontier.
75 min 2015
New Day Films
Director: Robin Lung
In the late 1930s China is in dire straits. The country will collapse under Japan’s military juggernaut if it doesn’t get outside help. Chinese American firebrand Li Ling-Ai jolts Americans into action with a new medium — 16mm Kodachrome color film. She hires photojournalist Rey Scott to travel to China and capture a citizen’s perspective of the war-torn country, including the massive bombing of the wartime capital Chungking (now Chongqing). Their landmark film KUKAN screened for President Roosevelt at the White House, was called “awesome” by the New York Times, and received one of the first Academy Awards for a feature documentary in 1942. Why have we never heard of this remarkable woman, Li Ling-Ai? And why have all copies of KUKAN disappeared? Filmmaker Robin Lung goes on a 7-year quest to find the answers. Best Documentary & Special Jury Award, Hawaii Int’l Film Festival
Footprint: Population, Consumption and Sustainability
82 min 2017
Women Make Movies
Director: Valentina Canavesio
Footprint takes a dizzying spin around the globe, witnessing population explosions, over-consumption, limited resources, and expert testimony about what a world straining at its limits can sustain. We spend time with indigenous health workers, activists, and the ordinary people in the Philippines, Mexico, Pakistan and Kenya. All of them challenge the idea that our world can continue to support the weight of humanity’s footprint on it. Footprint offers unprecedented access to the people on the ground who are challenging the status quo. It is time to ask critical questions about our shared future on the planet.
16 min 2016
NY Times Documentary and Manual Cinema Studios
Filmmakers: Samantha Stark, Alexandra Garcia, Pamela Druckerman
It’s 1944 in occupied Paris. Four friends spend their days in a narrow room atop a Left Bank apartment building. The neighbours think they’re painters — a cover story to explain the chemical smell. In fact, the friends are members of a Jewish resistance cell. They’re operating a clandestine laboratory to make false passports for children and families about to be deported to concentration camps. The youngest member of the group, the lab’s technical director, is 18-year-old Adolfo Kaminsky. Their heroic actions helped save the lives of thousands of Jews. Kaminsky went on to forge papers for people around the world in practically every major conflict of the mid-20th century. Audience Award for Short Documentary, Hot Docs
Freightened: The Real Price of Shipping
52 min 2016
Green Planet Films
Director: Denis Delestrac
The cargo shipping industry is a key player in world economy bringing 90% of the goods we consume in the West. Yet the functioning and regulation of this business remains largely obscure to many, and its hidden costs affect us all. Due to their size, freight ships no longer fit in traditional city harbours; they have moved out of the public’s eye, behind barriers and check points. The film answers many questions: Who pulls the strings in this multi-billion dollar business? To what extent does the industry control our policy makers? How does it affect the environment above and below the water-line?
Love The Sinner
17 min 2017
Women Make Movies
Filmmakers: Jessica Devaney & Geeta Gandbhir
This is a personal documentary exploring the connection between Christianity and homophobia in the wake of the 2016 shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando. Queer filmmaker Jessica Devaney grew up deeply immersed in Evangelical Christianity in Florida. After breaking with her youth as a nationally recognized activist and leader among conservative Evangelicals, Jessica left Florida and didn’t look back. She built a life that took her as far away from home as possible. Over time, her daily life became a progressive echo chamber. The mass shooting at Pulse was a wake-up call. By avoiding hard conversations with church leadership, had she missed opportunities to challenge homophobia? Love the Sinner probes our responsibility to face bias in our communities and push for dignity and equality for all.
Rebels On Pointe
89 min 2017
Director: Bobbi Jo Hart
Exploring universal themes of identity, dreams and family, Rebels on Pointe celebrates the world famous Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. The notorious all-male, comic, drag ballet company was founded over 40 years ago in New York City on the heels of the Stonewall riots, and has a passionate cult following around the world. The film juxtaposes intimate behind-the-scenes access, rich archives and history, engaging character-driven stories, and dance performances shot in North America, Europe and Japan. Rebels on Pointe is a creative blend of gender-bending artistic expression, diversity, passion and purpose. A story which ultimately proves that a ballerina is not only a woman dancing—but an act of revolution in a tutu. “Laugh out loud funny!… The dancers are good company for any audience.”—POV Magazine. Best Documentary, San Louis Obispo Film Festival and Miami LGBT Film Festival
The Right To Remain
45 min 2015
Director: Greg Masuda
The Right To Remain is a look at Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside residents and their fight to save their community from development. The documentary is told from a Japanese-Canadian perspective of those who remember their own displacement and internment and are guided by solidarity with their neighbours. The film follows Tom and others who sense homelessness knocking at their doors as rents skyrocket while the city lays out its development plans for the next 30 years.
24 min 2017
Squamish Nation and School District 48
Director: Ed Carswell
Students from School District 48’s Aboriginal Leadership Group travel throughout the Sea to Sky to interview Elders from both the Squamish and Lil’wat Nations. The teachings empower the students for their 3rd annual 24 Hour Drum event. Elders share stories, poetry, and deep wisdom surrounding issues of language revitalization, reconciliation and forgiveness.
A Silent Transformation
55 min 2017
Filmmakers: Simon Brothers, Luke Mistruzzi, Anton Smolski, Mark Preston
This is a film about the transformative power of the co-operative enterprise model. The co-op movement was built by people who took on the responsibility for their collective well-being in the face of government neglect, economic exclusion and cultural discrimination. As the modern economy increasingly denies the basic amenities for a decent life to vast sectors of the population, this co-operative spirit is as critical as ever. A Silent Transformation explores the innovative self-help efforts of different communities across Ontario. In these communities are the seeds of economic democracy, global solidarity, and a movement to transform society.
Taken For A Ride
56 min 1996
New Day Films
Director: Jim Klein
Taken for a Ride provides an historical look at the competition between highways and streetcars in the United States. Before freeways, traffic congestion and air pollution, public transportation was a vital part of the American landscape. Released in 1996, the film remains relevant today and provides a view of the political and corporate influences (particularly General Motors) which affected the demise of the streetcar and catapulted the automobile to the center of the national culture.
Vancouver: No Fixed Address
Director: Charles Wilkinson
What’s going on with exploding housing costs in key cities around the world? Vancouver: No Fixed Address focuses on the global housing bubble in a city often voted to be the ‘Best City in the World’. But the reality on the ground is that many residents are deeply concerned about their ability to stay here. This film engages with a group of experts who explain exactly what’s happening. It puts a human face on the housing crisis and the gross inequality it has left in its wake. The conclusions are pretty straightforward. But are the solutions?
Director: Michael Premo
Water Warriors is the story of a community’s successful fight to protect their water from the oil and natural gas industry. In 2013, Texas-based SWN Resources arrived in New Brunswick to explore for natural (fracked) gas. The region is known for its forestry, farming and fishing industries, which are commercial as well as subsistence operations that rural communities depend on. In response, a multicultural group of unlikely warriors–including members of the Mi’kmaq Elsipogtog First Nation, French-speaking Acadians and white English-speaking families–set up a series of road blockades preventing exploration. After months of resistance, their efforts not only halted drilling, they elected a new government and won an indefinite moratorium on fracking in the province.