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Village Of Idiots

Directors Eugene Fedorenko, Rose Newlove
Year 1999
Run Time 13min
Genre Animation, Drama
Based on a Jewish folk tale adapted by playwright John Lazarus, this animated short tells the story of Shmendrik, a simpleton living in a small Polish village. Weary of daily life in his native Chelm, Shmendrik sets out on a quest for knowledge that brings him to a new Chelm, a place eerily reminiscent of his old Chelm. An amusing take on our tendency to romanticize what we don't have.

Directors

Eugene Fedorenko, Rose Newlove

Writer

John Lazarus

Producers

Michael Scott, David Verrall

Genres

Animation, Drama

Interests

Arts and Culture, Classics, Female Filmmaker, Global Experiences

Original Language

English

Language Versions

FR Dub, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

NFB

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The Basketball Game

Director Hart Snider
Year 2011
Run Time 5min
Genre Animation, Drama

When nine-year-old Hart attends Jewish summer camp, his group must play an epic basketball game against the students of a notorious Holocaust denier. What awaits him on the court? 

Director

Hart Snider

Writer

Hart Snider

Producer

Yves J. Ma

Genres

Animation, Drama

Interests

Bullying, Discrimination, Social Justice & Politics, Sports

Original Language

English

Language Version

FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

NFB

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Christmas at Moose Factory

Director Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)
Year 1971
Run Time 13min
Genre Animation
Legendary documentarian Alanis Obomsawin’s debut film is a first-hand look at the experience of children in a residential school during Christmastime.

Director

Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)

Legendary Abenaki filmmaker Obomsawin has made over 50 documentaries on issues affecting Indigenous peoples in Canada, including Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance, Trick or Treaty?, Is the Crown at War with Us?, Our People Will Be Healed and Jordan River Anderson, The Messenger. Her most recent film is the short documentary Honour to Senator Murray Sinclair. Next, she is set to appear in an episode of Marie Clements’ Bones of Crows: The Series.

Genre

Animation

Interests

BIPOC Stories, Female Filmmaker, Indigenous Filmmaker

Original Language

English

Language Version

FR Subtitles

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Breaths

Director Nyla Innuksuk (Inuk)
Year 2016
Run Time 4min
Genre Documentary
“The North is the place where I feel I’m completely myself.” In this evocative documentary short, Inuit singer-songwriter and humanitarian Susan Aglukark weaves together stories of artistry, family, and belonging as she explores the complex cultural shifts of the last 50 years of Inuit life. Turning her lens on the turbulence of colonial transition, director Nyla Innuksuk examines the forces that shaped Aglukark’s voice and how that voice is now being translated for a new generation of Inuit artists. 

Director

Nyla Innuksuk (Inuk)

Innuksuk is a director, writer, producer, and VR creator. She co-created the Inuk character Snowguard with Marvel and has written several short films and documentaries. Her first feature was Slash/Back, released in 2022.

Genre

Documentary

Interest

Indigenous Filmmaker

Original Language

English

Language Version

FR Subtitles

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Now Is the Time

Director Christopher Auchter (Haida)
Year 2019
Run Time 16min
Genre Documentary
In 1969, the community of Old Massett raised a totem pole carved by Robert Davidson, the first new pole in Haida Gwaii in almost a century. 50 years later, a Haida filmmaker remixes the incredible archival footage and animation to reflect on the important event.

Director

Christopher Auchter (Haida)

Writer

Christopher Auchter (Haida)

Producer

Selwyn Jacob

Genre

Documentary

Interests

BIPOC Stories, History, Indigenous Filmmaker

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Subtitles

Stories We Tell

Director Sarah Polley
Year 2012
Run Time 109min
Genre Documentary
What begins as a cinematic search for her mother who died when Polley was only 11 becomes a kind of family detective story delving into long-buried secrets about the filmmaker herself. Mixing interviews with archival footage and dramatizations, Polley explores the very nature of family and the conspiracy we enter into in order to protect the bonds we cherish with our loved ones.

As Polley interrogates each of her subjects in turn, contradictory accounts emerge, and longstanding efforts to hide some painful truths eventually become futile.

The “stories we tell” — that all families tell in one way or another — turn out to obscure as much as they reveal, and the whole idea of the purpose of narrative is called into question in a way that is both fascinating and poignant.

Director

Sarah Polley

Polley won a screenwriting Oscar nomination for Away From Her, and directed Take This Waltz and Stories We Tell. She wrote and produced Alias Grace, a miniseries based on Margaret Atwood’s novel, which premiered at TIFF 2017. In 2022 she published the essay collection Run Toward the Danger. Her most recent feature, an adaptation of Miriam Toews’ Women Talking, premiered at TIFF 2022.

Writer

Sarah Polley

Producers

Silvia Basmajian, Anita Lee

Genre

Documentary

Interests

Biography, Female Filmmaker, History

Original Language

English

Language Version

FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

Mongrel Media

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Invisible City

Director Hubert Davis
Year 2009
Run Time 75min
Genre Documentary

A powerful documentary set in the housing project of Toronto’s Regent Park neighbourhood, Invisible City follows two childhood friends, Kendell and Mikey, who face many challenges while growing up in single-parent homes in the inner city.

Academy Award-nominated director Hubert Davis follows the two young men over three years, setting this intimate portrait against the backdrop of a community in transition: The Regent Park housing projects are about to be torn down and it is unclear whether the redevelopment will result in a brighter future for the residents.

Social pressures tempt the young men to make poor choices, while their families root for them to succeed. Davis doesn’t provide easy answers to the problems at hand. Instead, he shows the real uncertainty and unpredictability in the young men’s lives.

Director

Hubert Davis

Davis’s first film, Hardwood, was nominated for an Oscar for Best Short Documentary. He received the Don Haig award at the Hot Docs festival for Invisible City, and has directed numerous award winning commercials, as well as the short film Aruba and the 2016 feature doc Giants of Africa. His 2017 short, Rivolta, won a Cannes Film Lion. his most recent feature doc Black Ice, premiered at TIFF 2022. Next, he is working on the series The Count.

Writers

Sondra Kelly, Hubert Davis, Mehernaz Lentin

Producers

Mehernaz Lentin, Gerry Flahive

Genre

Documentary

Interests

BIPOC Stories, Social Justice & Politics

Original Language

English

Language Version

FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

NFB

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Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance

Director Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)
Year 1993
Run Time 119min
Genre Documentary
In July of 1990, the Oka Crisis was a critical moment in contemporary Canadian history and a turning point for Indigenous affairs. That summer, as the small Quebec community was thrust into the international spotlight, master filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin spent 78 nail-biting days filming the armed stand-off between the Mohawks of Kanehsatake, Quebec, the Quebec police and the Canadian army.

This powerful documentary takes you right to the heart of the action, painting a sensitive and deeply affecting portrait of the people behind the barricades.

Winner of the Toronto International Film Festival’s Best Canadian Feature Film prize.

Director

Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)

Legendary Abenaki filmmaker Obomsawin has made over 50 documentaries on issues affecting Indigenous peoples in Canada, including Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance, Trick or Treaty?, Is the Crown at War with Us?, Our People Will Be Healed and Jordan River Anderson, The Messenger. Her most recent film is the short documentary Honour to Senator Murray Sinclair. Next, she is set to appear in an episode of Marie Clements’ Bones of Crows: The Series.

Writer

Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)

Producers

Wolf Koenig, Colin Neale, Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)

Genre

Documentary

Interests

BIPOC Stories, Classics, Environment, Female Filmmaker, History, Indigenous Filmmaker, Social Justice & Politics

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, EN Subtitles, FR CC, FR Dub, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

National Film Board (NFB)

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Trick or Treaty?

Director Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)
Year 2014
Run Time 84min
Genre Documentary

One of the masters of Canadian documentary cinema, Alanis Obomsawin has spent decades chronicling the injustices visited on First Nations communities, creating a remarkable body of work. In her latest film, she digs into the difficult history of Treaty 9, the infamous 1905 agreement in which First Nations communities allegedly relinquished their sovereignty over their traditional lands.

Setting the film against the recent resurgence of First Nations activism (Chief Theresa Spence’s hunger strike and the Idle No More movement), Obomsawin interviews legal, historical and cultural experts — as well as people whose ancestors were present when the treaty was signed — to explore some fundamental questions about Canada’s relationship with our First Nations.

“Obomsawin’s documentaries inform, inspire and shock us. Trick or Treaty? is no different.” — Nadya Domingo, Toronto Film Scene

Director

Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)

Legendary Abenaki filmmaker Obomsawin has made over 50 documentaries on issues affecting Indigenous peoples in Canada, including Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance, Trick or Treaty?, Is the Crown at War with Us?, Our People Will Be Healed and Jordan River Anderson, The Messenger. Her most recent film is the short documentary Honour to Senator Murray Sinclair. Next, she is set to appear in an episode of Marie Clements’ Bones of Crows: The Series.

Writer

Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)

Producers

Annette Clarke, Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)

Genre

Documentary

Interests

BIPOC Stories, Environment, Female Filmmaker, Indigenous Filmmaker, Social Justice & Politics

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

NFB

Kissed

Director Lynne Stopkewich
Year 1996
Run Time 88min
Genre Drama
Based on Barbara Gowdy’s short story "We So Seldom Look On Love", Kissed tells the offbeat and unlikely story of Sandra (Molly Parker, who won the Genie Award for best actress for the role), a young woman whose lifelong preoccupation with death leads her to study as an embalmer at a mortuary school, where her romantic feelings about death blossom into full-blown necrophilia.
 
A fellow student (Peter Outerbridge) develops feelings for Sandra, but struggles to cope with her unusual and disturbing sexual desires. Kissed is a rare film about sexual awakening that manages to be both profoundly subversive and extremely tender.
 
“Stopkewich has managed the unlikely feat of making a film about necrophilia that is neither a black comedy nor a horror outing. Rather, she has crafted a poetic, provocative love story about sex, romance and death that is surprisingly endearing.” – Brendan Kelly, Variety
 

Director

Lynne Stopkewich

Writers

Angus Fraser, Lynne Stopkewich

Cast

Molly Parker, Peter Outerbridge, Jay Brazeau

Genre

Drama

Interest

Female Filmmaker

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

Malofilm Distribution

Blood and Donuts

Director Holly Dale
Year 1995
Run Time 89min
Genre Horror

Most people prefer coffee with their pastry, but then, most people aren't Canadian vampires trapped in an all-night donut shop! Boya (Gordon Currie), a sexy Gothic vampire, rises after 25 years of hibernation in ‘90s Toronto. Overwhelmed by his new surroundings, Boya takes refuge in an all-night diner where he forms a close relationship with a charming waitress (Helene Clarkson) and an offbeat cabbie (Justin Louis) who’s in too deep with the local gangsters, lead by none other than Filmmaking Icon David Cronenberg. Blood & Donuts is the hilariously morbid debut feature film from accomplished Canadian director Holly Dale (Dexter, The Americans, Durham County).

Director

Holly Dale

Writer

Andrew Rai Berzins

Cast

Gordon Currie, Louis Ferreira, Helene Clarkson, Fiona Reid

Genre

Horror

Interests

Cult & Offbeat Cinema, Female Filmmaker

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

Malofilm Distribution

Werewolf

Director Ashley McKenzie
Year 2016
Run Time 80min
Genre Drama

The difficult existence of a pair of homeless drug addicts is shown with harsh honesty and surprising sensitivity in McKenzie’s highly acclaimed debut feature. Shot almost entirely in close-ups that capture the disorienting world these characters inhabit, McKenzie teases out intimate and intense performances that inspire empathy as well as concern.

Werewolf’s stark filmmaking never romanticizes the lives of junkies Blaise (Andrew Gillis) and Vanessa (Bhreagh MacNeil), preferring instead to capture the frustration and futility of their lives with a startling power.

Werewolf won the Toronto Film Critics Association prize for best Canadian film of the year.

“In plumbing the pitch black, Werewolf offers the distinct hope of a brighter future – at least, a brighter future for Canadian cinema.” – Barry Hertz, The Globe and Mail

Director

Ashley McKenzie

Writer

Ashley McKenzie

Cast

Andrew Gillis, Bhreagh MacNeil

Producer

Ashley McKenzie

Genre

Drama

Interests

BIPOC Stories, Female Filmmaker

Original Language

English

Language Version

FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

The Film Distributor

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Better Than Chocolate

Director Anne Wheeler
Year 1999
Run Time 101min
Genre Comedy

Maggie (Karyn Dwyer) is happy with her life in Vancouver. She works at an LGBTQ+ bookstore owned by Frances (Anne-Marie MacDonald) and has recently fallen head over heels with a young artist named (Christina Cox). When the couple decide to take their romance to the next level and move in together, everything seems perfect.

That is, until Maggie’s recently-divorced mom Lila (Wendy Crewson) and brother Paul turn up at her doorstep, looking to stay with her. The unlikely foursome end up sharing Maggie’s Vancouver loft, and Maggie must decide whether to keep her relationship – and her sexuality – a secret, or reveal who she really is to her well-meaning but naïve and conservative mother.

“Anne Wheeler's sexy, funny, poignant film, from a bright script by Peggy Thompson, is a real charmer, with considerable brains.” – David Noh, FilmJournal International

Director

Anne Wheeler

Writer

Peggy Thompson

Cast

Wendy Crewson, Karyn Dwyer, Christina Cox, Christina Cox, Karyn Dwyer

Producer

Sharon McGowan

Genre

Comedy

Interests

BIPOC Stories, Female Filmmaker, LGBTQ2S+

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Subtitles, Other Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

TVA Films

Indian Horse

Director Stephen Campanelli
Year 2017
Run Time 100min
Genre Drama
Adapted from the much-celebrated novel by the late Ojibway writer Richard Wagamese, Indian Horse is a powerful drama that delves deep into the shameful history of Canada’s Residential Schools.

The young protagonist of Wagamese’s saga – brought to the screen by a team that includes director Stephen Campanelli, screenwriter Dennis Foon and executive producer Clint Eastwood — Saul comes to know the worst of the system’s abuses after a series of family tragedies leave him in the care of authorities in Manitoba of the late 1950s.

When one of the priests – played by Michiel Huisman of Game of Thrones – recognizes Saul’s hockey talents, a potential pathway opens up before the youngster but like so many survivors of the schools, he remains haunted by the traumas of the past.

Director

Stephen Campanelli

Director and cinematographer Campanelli got his start as a camera operator, working on many of Hollywood legend Clint Eastwood’s features, including Million Dollar Baby, Mystic River, Grand Torino, and others. His directing credits include Momentum, Indian Horse, Grand Isle, and most recently, Drinkwater. Next, he is set to direct The Outlaws.

Writer

Dennis Foon

Cast

Sladen Peltier (Ojibway), Forrest Goodluck (Diné/Mandan/Hidatsa/Tsimshian), Ajuawak Kapashesit (Ojibway/Cree), Michael Huisman

Producers

Trish Dolman, Paula Devonshire (Mohawk)

Genre

Drama

Interests

BIPOC Stories, Discrimination, History, Literary Adaptation, Social Justice & Politics, Sports

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

Elevation Pictures

Brooklyn

Director John Crowley
Year 2015
Run Time 117min
Genre Drama, Romance

Brooklyn tells the profoundly moving story of Eilis Lacey (Saoirse Ronan), a young Irish immigrant navigating her way through 1950s Brooklyn. Lured by the promise of America, Eilis departs Ireland and the comfort of her mother's home for the shores of New York City. The initial shackles of homesickness quickly diminish as a fresh romance sweeps Eilis into the intoxicating charm of love. But soon, her new life is disrupted by her past, and Eilis must choose between two countries and two paths in life. 

Director

John Crowley

Writers

Nick Hornby, Colm Tóibín

Cast

Saoirse Ronan, Hugh Gormley, Brid Brennan

Producers

Finola Dwyer, Pierre Even, Susan Mullen, Amanda Posey, Marie-Claude Poulin

Genres

Drama, Romance

Interests

Arts and Culture, Literary Adaptation, Newcomer Stories, Strong Female Leads

Original Language

English

Language Version

FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

Mongrel Media

Taxi Libre

Director Kaveh Nabation
Year 2010
Run Time 13min
Genre Drama

Jose Garcia was a doctor in his home country. Now, as a taxi driver in Canada, he must cope with a playfully taunting prospective employer who takes a seat in his cab.

Director

Kaveh Nabation

Writer

Kaveh Nabation

Cast

Omar Alexis Ramos Torres, Alain Cadieux, Marco Ledezma

Producers

Alexandra Yanofsky, Kat Baulu

Genre

Drama

Interests

BIPOC Stories, Newcomer Stories

Original Languages

French, Other Language

Language Versions

EN Subtitles, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

NFB

Ballerina

Directors Éric Summer, Éric Warin
Year 2016
Run Time 89min
Genre Animation, Comedy, Family
Eleven-year-old orphan Félicie (Elle Fanning) has one dream: to go to Paris and become a dancer. Her best friend Victor (Dane DeHaan), a highly imaginative boy, has a dream of his own: to become a famous inventor. In a leap of faith, Victor and Félicie leave their orphanage in pursuit of their passions. But there’s a catch —Félicie must pretend to be the child of a wealthy family in order to get into a prestigious ballet school, where she quickly learns that talent alone is not enough to overcome the ruthless attitudes of her fellow classmates, led by Camille le Haut (Maddie Ziegler) and her wicked mother, Régine (Julie Khaner).

Determined to succeed, Félicie finds her mentor in the tough and mysterious school custodian, Odette (Carly Rae Jepsen), who, along with Victor’s encouraging friendship, helps her reach for the stars.

Directors

Éric Summer, Éric Warin

Writers

Éric Summer, Laurent Zeitoun, Carol Noble

Cast

Elle Fanning, Dane DeHaan, Carly Rae Jepsen

Producers

Valérie d'Auteuil, Nicolas Duval-Adassovsky

Genres

Animation, Comedy, Family

Interests

Arts and Culture, Strong Female Leads

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Dub, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

eOne

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Boxed In

Director Shane Belcourt (Métis)
Year 2009
Run Time 4min
Genre Comedy, Drama
In this short film, a young woman of mixed ancestry struggles with an Equal Opportunity Form that requires her to respond to the dilemma: Ethnicity - Choose One.

Director

Shane Belcourt (Métis)

Writers

Shane Belcourt (Métis), Duane Murray

Cast

Jennifer McEwan, Arnold Pinnock

Producer

Lea Marin

Genres

Comedy, Drama

Interests

BIPOC Stories, Discrimination, Indigenous Filmmaker, Social Justice & Politics

Original Language

English

Language Version

FR Subtitles

Maudie

Director Aisling Walsh
Year 2016
Run Time 115min
Genre Drama, Romance
Maudie is based on the true story of Nova Scotia painter Maud Lewis, who overcame the physical challenge of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis to become one of Canada's best known and most loved folk artists.

The fragile but determined Maudie (Sally Hawkins) yearns for independence from her over-protective family and dreams of creating art. When she answers an ad for a housekeeper placed by a reclusive fish seller (Ethan Hawke), she gains more than just the freedom she wanted, as the unlikely pair develops a relationship that is intensely intimate and just as challenging.

A touching and inspiring story about following one's dreams in spite of life's obstacles, Maudie is an absolute charmer.

"Maudie breaks your heart with its infectious positivity." - Tomris Laffly, Time Out

Director

Aisling Walsh

Walsh’s previous projects include feature films The Daisy Chain and Song for a Raggy Boy, as well as directing over a dozen TV movies and shows, including Room at the Top, which won a BAFTA for Best Miniseries, and the TV movies A Poet in New York and An Inspector Calls. She most recently made the TV movie Elizabeth Is Missing. Next she will be directing Ethel’s Orchestra and producing The Ballroom.

Writer

Sherry White

Cast

Sally Hawkins, Ethan Hawke

Producers

Mary Young Leckie, Sally Hawkins, Ethan Hawke

Genres

Drama, Romance

Interests

Arts and Culture, Biography, ESL, Family Relationships, Female Filmmaker, History, Strong Female Leads

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Dub, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

Mongrel Media/Criterion

Bon Cop Bad Cop 2

Director Alain Desrochers
Year 2017
Run Time 126min
Genre Action/Adventure, Comedy, Drama

Eight years after they met in Bon Cop Bad Cop (above), the comically mismatched duo of straightlaced Ontario cop Martin Ward (Feore) and scruffy Quebec cop David Bouchard (Huard) reunite to investigate yet another major crime in this long-awaited sequel. When their separate investigations unexpectedly cross paths, the pair must join forces to investigate a crime ring south of the border, giving the film plenty of hilarious opportunities to poke fun at the cultural differences between the two Canucks and their American counterparts.

Director

Alain Desrochers

Desrochers began his filmmaking career with over 100 music videos and commercials, winning numerous awards. His first feature, La Bouteille, earned him a Genie nomination for Best Direction. His credits include Nitro, Cabotins and Gerry. Most recently, he directed the miniseries Bad Blood and the feature Security starring Sir Ben Kingsley.

Writer

Patrick Huard

Cast

Colm Feore, Patrick Huard, Erik Knudsen, Sarah-Jeanne Labrosse

Producers

Pierre Even, Patrick Huard, François Flamand

Genres

Action/Adventure, Comedy, Drama

Interest

Family Relationships

Original Languages

English, French

Language Versions

EN CC, EN Subtitles, FR CC, FR Subtitles

Canadian Distributor

Les Films Seville