Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF)

When, Where & How October 1 - 11, 2021 | various Vancouver venues + VIFF Connect - Virtual Cinema

All My Puny Sorrows

Canada, 2021, Dir. Michael McGowan, 103 minutes

When and Where Sun, October 3, 2021 at 6pm at Vancouver Playhouse, Wed, October 6, 2021 at 6pm at Kay Meek Arts Centre, Sun, October 10, 2021 at 9pm at Hollywood Theatre

All My Puny Sorrows is a semi-autobiographical family drama by Michael McGowan. It takes its somewhat ironic title from a partial line in a poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. The complete line reads:To her I pour'd forth all my puny sorrows. Full review

The Electrical Life of Louis Wain

UK, 2021, Dir. Will Sharpe, 111 minutes

When and Where Saturday, October 2, 2021 at 6:30pm & Saturday, October 9, 2021 at 6pm | Vancouver Playhouse

The Electrical Life of Louis Wain is part love story and part biopic with time markings. It is directed by Will Sharpe from his own screenplay in association with Simon Stephenson. Benedict Cumberbatch plays eccentric graphical illustrator Louis Wain, an exuberant and sometimes brilliant man who might also considered being neurotic....Full review


Petite Maman

France, 2021, Dir. Céline Sciamma, 72 minutes

When and Where Sunday, October 10, 2021 at 6.30pm & 9pm at Vancouver Playhouse

Petite Maman (Little Mother) is Céline Sciamma’s coming of age story that relies on its premise a kind of psychic phenomena, or at the very least, an episode of fantastical imagination of an eight-year-old girl. Full review

Spaghetti Code Love

Japan, 2021, Dir. Takeshi Maruyama, 96 minutes

When and Where Friday, October 1, 2021 at 9.15pm at The Cinematheque & Saturday, October 9, 2021 at 10:30am at Vancity Theatre

In Japanese with English subtitles

Spaghetti Code Love is a non-linear ensemble work by as yet unknown film-maker Takeshi Maruyama. The title is derived from tech jargon for source code illogically organized.Full review


Canada, 2021, Dir. Alan Zweig, 87 minutes

When and Where Thursday, October 7, 2021 at 6:15pm at The Rio Theatre, Sunday, October 10, 2021 at 3:30pm at Hollywood Theatre

Records is Canadian film-maker Alan Zweig’s off-beat documentary that is less about records and more about some of the bizarre people who collect them and perhaps spend so much time buying and cataloguing them, that they barely have time to listen to them. Full review


Handle With Care: The Legend of the Notic Streetball Crew

Canada, 2021, Dir. Jeremy Schaulin-Rioux & Kirk Thomas, 87 minutes

When and Where Friday, October 8, 2021 at 9pm at Vancouver Playhouse; Sunday, October 10, 2021 at the Rio

Reviewer John Jane

Handle With Care: The Legend of the Notic Streetball Crew is a documentary twenty years in the making. Jeremy Schaulin-Rioux and Kirk Thomas originally set out to both promote and exploit streetball – a freestyle form of basketball, played (generally) outdoors on tarmac with fewer rules. Full review

Drive My Car

Japan, 2021, Dir. Ryusuke Hamaguchi, 179 minutes

When and Where Monday, October 4, 2021 at 8:45pm at Vancouver Playhouse

In Japanese, Korean sign language and occasional English with English subtitles

Drive My Car is adapted from Haruki Murakami short story that may have taken less time to read than the time it takes to watch the film version. Sitting through three hours of a foreign language film, even if the foreign language is Japanese is a test of endurance, but Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s sweeping character study made it rewarding. Full review

Mothering Sunday

UK, 2021, Dir. Eva Husson, 104 minutes

When and Where Saturday, October 2, 2021 at 3:30pm & Friday, October 8, 2021 at 6:15pm at Vancouver Playhouse, Vancouver; Saturday, October 9, 2021 at 6pm at Kay Meek Arts Centre

Reviewer John Jane

Mothering Sunday is Eva Husson’s exquisitely photographed, mildly erotic period piece. As with Graham Swift’s original novel it’s set in March, 1924 in the Berkshire countryside. Full review


Queen of Glory

USA, 2021, Dir. Nana Mensah, 78 minutes

When and Where Friday, October 1, 2021 at 7:15pm at The Cinematheque, Saturday, October 9, 2021 at 6:45pm at The Rio Theatre, 19+ Venue

Reviewer John Jane

Queen of Glory is a personal essay from Ghanaian-American film-maker, which she has written, directed and given herself the main role.Full review


Bye Bye Morons (Adieu les cons)

France, 2020, Director Albert Dupontel, 87 minutes

In French with English subtitlesFull review

The curious title is an English translation of actor-filmmaker Albert Dupontel’s dark comedy Adieu les cons. It is the intended final statement of disillusioned civil servant Jean-Baptiste Cuchas (portrayed by the director himself) as he bungles his suicide attempt. The action sets off a madcap misadventure involving an unlikely cohort of terminally ill Suze Trappet, blind archivist Serge Blin and the hapless M. Cuchas. Full review

2021 DOXA Documentary Film Festival

WHEN & WHERE May 6-16, 2021 | Entire Program Online

Fanny: The Right to Rock

Canada, dir. Bobbi Jo Hart, 2021, 96 mins

Available: May 6, 2021 12:01am - May 16, 2021 11.59pm

While the eighties gave us the Bangles and the Go-Go's, the early seventies gave us Fanny. Started up by Filipino-American bassist Jean Millington and her sister lead guitarist June Millington who had both played together in high school as Svelte along with drummer and friend Brie Darling, who also identified as Filipino-American. Full review



Your Mother’s Comfort

Brazil/USA, dir. Adam Golub, 2020, 75 mins

Available: May 6, 2021 12:01am - May 16, 2021 11.59pm

In Portuguese with English subtitles

Adam Golub’s socio-political documentary chronicles the struggle of Indianara Siqueira, a trans woman, political activist and den mother to the occupants of Casa Nem, a sanctuary for Rio de Janeiro’s transgender and LGBT. Full review

What About Our Future?

Canada, dir. Jaime Leigh Gianopoulos & Cláudio Cruz, 2020, 24 mins

Available: May 6, 2021 12:01am - May 16, 2021 11.59pm

This twenty minute documentary looks at a movement of high school students across Metro Vancouver known collectively as the Sustainabiliteens. The film observes their preparations for the climate change rally that was expected to have Swedish activist Greta Thunberg in attendance. Full review

Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché

UK, dir. Celeste Bell & Paul Sng, 2021, 90 mins

Available: May 6, 2021 12:01am; May 16, 2021 11.59pm

Reviewer John Jane

Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché started out as a publicly funded project initiated by Celeste Bell, Poly Styrene’s only child from her marriage to musician Adrian Bell. Since her mother’s death at the age of 53, (almost) exactly ten years ago on April 25, 2011, Bell has become the de facto curator or the mother’s personal archives. Full review