Films

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Film Schedule:

Film Descriptions:

Ailey
2021 (94 min)
Director:  Jamila Wignot
Watch the trailer

Alvin Ailey was a visionary artist who found salvation through dance. An immersive profile of ground-breaking and influential choreographer Alvin Ailey, founder of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Sensorial and archival-rich, this film captures the brilliant and enigmatic man who, when confronted by a world that refused to embrace him, was determined to build one that would.

A Cedar is Life
2022 (90 Min)
Producers:  Leslie D. Bland and Harold Joe
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A Cedar is Life is an illuminating and reverent documentary looking at the cedar tree and its place and importance on our coast and in the world. The cedar tree is embodied spiritually and is central to First Nations cultural practices. We hear from weavers, carvers, and food & cultural practitioners, who all speak to the significance of the cedar historically and into the present day. The film celebrates the multi-faceted power and cultural use of this life force, but also takes a critical lens to how it has been treated as an extractable object. A Cedar is Life is a call to action for all of us to work to maintain our relationship with this rich medicine and resource for future generations.

The Cowichan Sweater: Our Knitted Legacy
2023 (44 min)
Filmmaker:  Mary Galloway
Producer: Tiffany Joseph – in attendance
Watch the trailer

The inside story that weaves together the rich history of the authentic Cowichan sweater and how and why it became the beautiful icon of the Coast Salish peoples. The film explores the history of the sweaters in the Cowichan and Saanich territories on Vancouver Island, the different patterns and the traditional knitters from these communities.

Creatures of Convenience
2020 (45 min)
Filmmaker:  Stuart Gillies

The filmmaker goes on a journey of discovery through British Columbia to learn what we can do as individuals and families to overcome the waste created by our modern lifestyles of convenience. More than 40 per cent of plastic is used only once and much of that plastic waste winds up in either our landfills or our oceans.  The film delves into the various challenges to recycling and the different sorting guidelines that exist between municipalities. So, while convenience is leading to increased plastic pollution, making recycling more convenient could be the answer to encouraging more people to adopt a lower-impact lifestyle.

Debris 
2015 (14 min)
Filmmaker:  John Bolton

This short film is a portrait of Tofino, BC intertidal artist Pete Clarkson as he crafts a memorial to the 2011 Japan earthquake and the resulting tsunami.  He was deeply affected by it and, years later, as timber and other objects started to wash ashore, the disaster hit home again for Clarkson, and the inspiration for his memorial was born. In his caring hands, he shapes the remnants from the Tohoku region into a unique public sculpture and memorial that is an emotional bridge connecting an artist, his community and a people an ocean away

Fashion’s Dirty Secrets
2019 (60 min)
Filmmaker:  Stacey Dooley

‘Fast fashion’ has taken the clothing industry by storm. Retailers churn out affordable versions of the latest fashions from the runway to the store shelf, and we’re pressured to keep up with the trends. While there is an increased awareness of poor labour conditions in some of these factories, many of us don’t know the extent to which the industry is harming our planet. The fashion industry uses enormous quantities of scarce water and is thought to be one of the worst-polluting industries in the world, falling among the ranks of oil and coal.

How to be at Home
2020 (5 min)
Filmmaker:  Andrea Dorfman

Lean into loneliness — and know you’re not alone in it. Filmmaker Andrea Dorfman reunites with poet Tanya Davis to craft tender and profound animation on the theme of isolation, providing a wise and soaringly lyrical sequel to their viral hit How to Be Alone. Part of THE CURVE, a collection of social distancing stories that bring us together.

Invasion of the Murder Hornets
2021 (17 min)
Executive Producer:  Geoff Morrison
Director:  Kathleen S. Jayme

In Spring 2020 a threat emerged in North America — the Asian giant hornet, an apex predator known for violently decimating honeybee populations and killing the occasional human with its venomous sting.  A few of the somewhat dubiously named “murder hornets” were spotted in Washington State. But nine months earlier, the Asian giant hornet had already arrived in Nanaimo, where a group of dedicated beekeepers discovered the first nest on the continent. With the clock ticking before new queens emerged from the nest and spread throughout the region, the beekeepers hatched a plan to eradicate the nest, save their honeybees, and stem the invasion of the murder hornets.

Jet Pilot
1964(16 min)
Filmmaker:  Joseph Koenig

A short film showing how the introduction of jet travel changed traditional ideas of space and time. The jet pilot in this film sped from northern cold to tropical heat in only a few hours. The film is a dramatic illustration of how high speed-travel shrinks the world and brings people together.  Screened before The Last Tourist, it provides an interesting juxtaposition to what travel has become.

Joan Baez: I am a Noise
2023 (113 min)
Directors:  Miri Navasky and Karen O’Connor

In this biography that opens with her farewell tour, Joan Baez takes stock in an unsparing fashion, confronting often painful memories and opening up about her history with mental illness, her family, drugs, ageing and questions of guilt and forgiveness. For the first time on record, she speaks to her relationship with Bob Dylan, how she used her fame to launch his career, and the pain of their later estrangement. The film interweaves diary entries and Baez’s own illustrations with extensive conversations and backstage moments from the tour.

The Last Tourist
2021 (101 min)
Director:  Tyson Sadler

Travel is at a tipping point. From Caribbean beaches to remote villages in Kenya, forgotten voices reveal the real conditions and consequences of one of the largest industries in the world. The role of the modern tourist is on trial.  This film explores how we, as travelers, have the opportunity to be the driving force that paves a new way to travel in a more thoughtful manner that protects both people and places, and secures a positive future for destinations and host communities for generations to come.


Now is the Time
2019 (16 min)
Filmmaker:  Christopher Auchter

When internationally renowned Haida carver Robert Davidson was only 22 years old, he carved the first new totem pole on Haida Gwaii in almost a century. On the 50th anniversary of the pole’s raising, Haida filmmaker Christopher Auchter steps easily through history to revisit that day in August 1969, when the entire village of Old Massett gathered to celebrate the event that would signal the rebirth of the Haida spirit.


Ora
2011 (15 min)
Filmmaker:  Philippe Baylaucq

Ora is a stunning meeting between the artistic worlds of choreographer José Navas and filmmaker Philippe Baylaucq. It is the first film to use 3D thermal imaging, producing visuals like none that have ever been seen before: the luminous variations of body heat seen on skin, bodies emitting a multitude of colours, a space filled with movement that transforms itself.  Please note this will be screened in 2D only.

 

Soup of the Day
2013(4 min)
Filmmaker:  Lynn Smith

This animated short is a tasty comic narrative that skips along an array of tantalizing dishes. Set to a catchy doo-wop song by Canadian songwriter Alexander (Zander) Ary, the film brings Lynn Smith’s gouache paintings to life as she animates directly under the camera.

Tiny
2023 (17 min)
Filmmakers:  Ryan Haché and Ritchie Hemphill
Narration: Colleen Hemphill

Tiny is a contemplative stop motion film which tells the story of ‘Nakwaxda’xw Elder Colleen Hemphill’s childhood. The film portrays modern day Colleen as she reflects on her past, and re-enacts the stories she tells of her youth, as a young girl growing up on a float-house in the wild and unpredictable Pacific Northwest and its waters.

Truffle Hunters
2020 (83 min)
Directors:  Michael Dweck and Gregory Kershaw

This visually stunning often funny film follows a handful of men, seventy to eighty years young, in Piedmont, Italy, on the search for the elusive Alba truffle. They’re guided by a secret culture passed down through generations, as well as by the noses of their cherished and expertly trained dogs. The documentary subtly explores the devastating effects of climate change and deforestation on an age-old tradition that celebrates life and exalts the human spirit. Delightful in its simplicity and profound in its wisdom.  Italian with English subtitles.


Unarchived
2022 (84 min)
Filmmakers:  Haley Gray and Elad Tzadok

In community archives across British Columbia, local knowledge keepers are hand-fashioning a more inclusive history through family photos, newspaper articles and scratchy old VHS tapes. These different collections tell stories of people building connection through work, play, protest, family and tradition to reveal some of what has been erased from the official record. Featured are collections about the Paldi community here in the Cowichan Valley, the gay community in the West End of Vancouver, and Victoria’s Chinese community.