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I had the pleasure of introducing Strange and Familiar: Architecture on Fogo Island (Sept 18) at its first sold-out Winnipeg screening as part of the Architecture+Design Film Festival. I have watched literally thousands of films in my life, of all genres and origins. Rarely does a film catch me by surprise now, and this is exactly what Strange and Familiar did. The film is a fulfilling condensed study of the meeting of will and landscape, and of personality and architecture. This film is imperfect and has important gaps, most especially the missed context that the Beothuk were, in fact, the actual original inhabitants of the island. Yet, even with its imperfections, this film is a mesmerizing character study well worth watching.
— Cecilia Araneda, Executive Director
One of the most exciting benefits of working at a movie theatre is getting to watch screeners—more exciting is when it’s a film you’ve been dying to see like Eden (Sept 11–24), a semi-fictional drama about the birth of the French House scene in Paris (featuring a little DJ duo just starting out called Daft Punk). I’m really excited to experience the film on a proper screen at the old ‘theque! Also, I heard nothing but amazement from fellow cinephiles about A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence (Oct 1–8) at the Gimli Film Festival, so I’m really thrilled that Dave was able to book it. Lastly, I caught The Forbidden Room (Oct 9–19) at a private screening earlier in the year and I came out changed. Guy Maddin and Evan Johnson have created a gorgeously insane masterpiece, easily one of the best films I have seen in some time. This is a fantastic experience of sensory overload that you cannot miss.
— Jaimz Asmundson, Cinematheque Programming Director
Four years in the making, Guy Maddin and his collaborator Evan Johnson have created
a stunning ode to lost cinema. The Forbidden Room features beautiful visuals and an
incredible unearthly soundtrack reminiscent of Archangel and Careful. Look out for guest starring roles from Charlotte Rampling, Geraldine Chaplin and Louis Negin. Grandma (Oct 16–30), the new feature by About a Boy director Paul Weitz, will knock your socks off. Lily Tomlin delivers a fantastic performance as a wise-cracking, older woman embarking on a road trip to help her niece deal with an upcoming pregnancy. Very funny. And finally, Alex Poruchynyk is a pioneer in the Winnipeg artistic community with many of the city’s best media artists passing through his Faculty of Fine Art course at the U of M. Animator and teacher Alain Delannoy assembled an evening of his best work (Oct 8).
— Dave Barber, Cinematheque Programming Coordinator
Strange and Familiar: Architecture on Fogo Island and Sugar Coated are returning for more screenings due to all the requests to bring them back! Due to its beauty, Strange and Familiar was a sell out at the Architecture+Design Film Festival. Sugar Coated (Oct 1–4) created quite the audience conversation even before the screening began so we’ve organized a post screening panel discussion this time around. The Wolfpack (Sept 2–24): what a fascinating (and haunting) story. I’m not sure if I’m more interested in the boys’ creative outlet or why their father wanted them to live in such extreme confinement. One critic compared it to Grey Gardens, so… I’m in! Lastly, if you’re into photography, Very Nice Pictures (Oct 11) will feature an Academy Award nominated film and a discussion with Leif Norman (a cool person you want to hang around with in hopes that his charisma and hipsterism will rub off on you) and John Paskievich (A Place Not Our Own: North End Winnipeg)
— Kristy Muckosky, Cinematheque Operations Manager
The beginning of Oct holds The Works of Alex Poruchnyk (Oct 8), a series of short videos which span over the course of 20 years. A couple of highlights from the local video artist include Live Wire; an experiment that truly captures the intensity of early video art. Another favourite is the poetic Dock-Watch-Bay; the movement and rhythm of this piece will captivate the audience. Not only is Poruchnyk a talented artist but has taught and inspired many local filmmakers, video artists, animators, including the likes of myself and probably others you know. In terms of features I’m banking on The Wolfpack being the strangest of the nonfiction films this round. This mix of bizarre exclusion and media overload has resulted in a creative influx of DIY remakes. A must see for the both art and psychology majors.
— Heidi Phillips, Cinematheque Head Projectionist
The Look of Silence (Oct 23–31) is a companion piece to one of my favourite films from 2013, director Joshua Oppenheimer’s previous documentary film The Act of Killing, which was a bizarre and terrifying look at the men who carried out the killings during the communist purge in Indonesia in the mid-60s. The Look of Silence recounts once again this terrible event but settles this time on the story of one man as he confronts the killers who murdered his brother and attempts to understand why and how they could commit the horrific acts they performed. This is a documentary not to be missed.
— Eric Peterson, Cinematheque Box Office