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Vancouver International Film Festival 2016 | Sep 29 - Oct 14 | viff.org
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Day 11: Award Winners + Highlights at VIFF Sun. Oct. 9
BC Spotlight AwardsCanadian Film AwardsShort Film Awards

FilmsProgram UpdatesTicket InfoVenuesVIFF Info


Our daily emails during the festival will give you a snapshot of upcoming screenings and provide you with program updates. If you want to know more, viff.org offers you the chance to read longer film descriptions and the ability to search the lineup by series, genres, themes and countries. Browse, pick your movies, purchase tickets and we'll see you at the movies! You may also visit any of these locations to pick up a free copy of our Complete Program Guide.

BC Spotlight Awards | VIFF 2016

VIFF is excited to announce our 2016 awards that celebrate outstanding achievements in filmmaking by our homegrown talent. All our awards can be found here.

Cabbie
JESSICA PARSONS, JENNIFER CHIU, CANADA, 2015, 12 MIN.
World Premiere
IGNITE AWARD
Three taxi drivers navigate Vancouver in a dreamlike meditation on trust, chance and the transformative power of human connection.

Here Nor There
JULIA HUTCHINGS, CANADA, 2016, 15 MIN.
BEST BC SHORT FILM
Hired to play a private investigator at a woman’s funeral, an actor slowly realizes that his isn’t the only masquerade.

Window Horses (The Poetic Persian Epiphany of Rosie Ming)
BEST BC FILM AWARD
ANN MARIE FLEMING, CANADA, 2016, 89 MIN.
Ann Marie Fleming’s Window Horses, a beautifully narrated and colourfully animated story of a young girl’s journey, employs poetry, music and illustration to celebrate the value of self-discovery. After being invited to a poetry festival in Shiraz, Iran, by a mysterious figure, Rosie Ming faces challenges that ultimately lead to her self-realization. The film’s superb voice cast includes festival veterans Sandra Oh, Don McKellar and Ellen Page.

Hello Destroyer
KEVAN FUNK, CANADA, 2016, 110 MIN.
BC EMERGING FILMMAKER AWARD
WED OCT 12, 8:30 PM, VANCITY
Embarrassed by the scoreboard and emasculated by his coach, a junior hockey player (Jared Abrahamson) attempts to uphold the game’s unwritten code by sending a message to the opposition. Instead, his recklessness sees him banished from his band of brothers. Boasting all the white-knuckle tension of a prison drama, Kevan Funk’s debut feature is an involving character study that illustrates the cruel disposability of on-ice warriors and the psychological ramifications of cultures of violence.

Canadian Film Awards | VIFF 2016

VIFF is excited to announce our 2016 awards that celebrate outstanding achievements in Canadian filmmaking. All our awards can be found here.

Window Horses (The Poetic Persian Epiphany of Rosie Ming)
ANN MARIE FLEMING, CANADA, 2016, 89 MIN.
BEST CANADIAN FILM
Ann Marie Fleming’s Window Horses, a beautifully narrated and colourfully animated story of a young girl’s journey, employs poetry, music and illustration to celebrate the value of self-discovery. After being invited to a poetry festival in Shiraz, Iran, by a mysterious figure, Rosie Ming faces challenges that ultimately lead to her self-realization. The film’s superb voice cast includes festival veterans Sandra Oh, Don McKellar and Ellen Page.

Those Who Remains
(Ceux qui restent)
BEST CANADIAN SHORT FILM
MATHIEU VACHON, CANADA, 2015, 9 MIN.
THU OCT 13, 3:00 PM, VANCITY
During a period of mourning, the residents of an Algonquin community find their own ways to survive. And to thrive.

Parent, Teacher
ROMAN TCHJEN, CANADA, 2015, 12 MIN.
MOST PROMISING DIRECTOR OF A CANADIAN SHORT FILM
After his son attacks another student, a father becomes embroiled in an impassioned debate with the boy’s well-meaning teacher.

Never Eat Alone
SOFIA BOHDANOWICZ, CANADA, 2015, 68 MIN.
World Premiere
EMERGING CANADIAN DIRECTOR award
A widow in her mid-80s starts to wonder what ever happened to a would-be lover who appeared with her in a live television drama back in the 50s. Her granddaughter offers to try and to track him down for her in this beautifully understated debut feature directed by Sofia Bohdanowicz. A thoughtful meditation on memory and aging, Never Eat Alone takes a frank and tender look at late-life loneliness and solitude.

Living With Giants
(Chez les géants)
SEBASTIEN RIST, AUDE LEROUX-LÉVESQUE, CANADA, 2016, 79 MIN.
BEST CANADIAN DOCUMENTARY
WED OCT 12, 6:00 PM, INTL VILLAGE 8
This nuanced documentary by directors Sebastien Rist and Aude Leroux-Lévesque is infused with deep-rooted traditions and the harsh realities of a changing Arctic. Paulusie is an optimistic, imaginative and sensitive Inuk teen who loves the solitude of hunting. But when alcohol is smuggled into his dry community for a graduation party, his life is turned upside down. Kudos to the directors for avoiding facile political statements and revealing something deeper about Native youth in the North.

VIFF Impact Awards | VIFF 2016

All our awards can be found here.

Power to Change—The Energy Rebellion
(Power to Change - Die Energie Rebellion)
CARL-A. FECHNER, GERMANY, 2015, 94 MIN.
Canadian Premiere
VIFF IMPACT AWARD
Meet the people who just might save our planet. This documentary outlines a wealth of innovations and the figures behind them, and lays out a plan that sees us reduce our carbon emissions to virtually zero. If you’re down in the dumps about our planet’s future, Carl-A. Fechner’s film will be a tonic—it conveys hope and excitement. The path to energy independence won’t be easy, but when the lights come up you’ll know it exists.

Highlights | VIFF 2016

Beyond the Mountains and Hills
(Me’ever Laharim Vehagvaot)
ERAN KOLIRIN, ISRAEL/GERMANY, 2016, 90 MIN.
SUN OCT 9, 9:15 PM, INTL VILLAGE 10
The Greenbaums—retired army vet David (Alon Pdut), his teacher wife Rina (Shiree Nadav-Naor), son Omri (Noam Imber) and politically active daughter Yifat (Mili Eshet)—seem a moderately happy bunch in Erin Kolirin’s (The Band’s Visit) smart, precisely composed drama. But when dad’s feelings of powerlessness lead him to blindly fire his gun into the night, the family’s unravelling begins… “An intriguing… drama that starts off lightly and moves into significantly darker territory…”—Hollywood Reporter

Chocolat
ROSCHDY ZEM, FRANCE, 2015, 110 MIN.
North American Premiere
SUN OCT 9, 6:30 PM, CENTRE FOR ARTS
Omar Sy (The Intouchables) is brilliant as the former slave who found fame as a comedic circus performer known only as “Chocolat” in Belle Époque Paris. Together with partner George Footit (here played with an astounding physicality by James Thiérrée, Chaplin’s grandson, who also choreographed the routines), Chocolat had it all—until personal demons and racism brought about his fall. “Roschdy Zem’s bittersweet historical drama is a marvellous showcase for… [Sy’s] talents and effortless charisma.”—Screen

The Girl with All the Gifts
COLM MCCARTHY, UK, 2016, 111 MIN.
SUN OCT 9, 9:30 PM, CENTRE FOR ARTS
WED OCT 12, 9:15 PM, RIO
The zombie genre hasn’t felt this alive since 28 Days Later! With much of humanity transformed into flesh-eating predators, a teacher (Gemma Arterton) and a scientist (Glenn Close) believe they may’ve found the key to survival in Melanie (Sennia Nanua), a bright young girl who’s also a “hungry.” When they’re flushed out of hiding, Colm McCarthy ratchets up the tension while fleshing out the human drama in wildly unpredictable ways. “Smartly compelling, emotionally engaging and stylishly executed…”—Screen

Glory
(Slava)
KRISTINA GROZEVA, PETAR VALCHANOV, BULGARIA/GREECE, 2016, 98 MIN.
North American Premiere
SUN OCT 9, 6:00 PM, INTL VILLAGE 8
FRI OCT 14, 11:00 AM, SFU-GCA
When an honest railway worker finds a stash of money along the tracks, he turns in the cache to the authorities. PR spin doctor Julia (the amazing Margita Gosheva), in need of good publicity for her client, the corrupt Ministry of Transport, sets in motion a chain of events that will take a terrible toll… “[A] stiletto-sharp report on the state of modern Bulgaria… Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov have a rare ability to make gripping, politically charged drama that is entirely accessible.”—Screen

Growing Up Coy
ERIC JUHOLA, USA, 2016, 83 MIN.
SUN OCT 9, 7:00 PM, INTL VILLAGE 9
TUE OCT 11, 4:00 PM, INTL VILLAGE 9
In small-town Colorado, an elementary school bathroom is the flashpoint for a heated legal battle. After their transgender daughter is banned from using the bathroom that matches her gender, her parents take their case to the court of public opinion only to incur a fierce backlash and be branded child abusers. Eric Juhola’s inspiring documentary profiles this undaunted family as they campaign tirelessly for their child’s rights. "Its emotional heft makes it more than an advocacy film…"—Guardian

Junction 48
UDI ALONI, ISRAEL/GERMANY/USA, 2016, 97 MIN.
Canadian Premiere
SUN OCT 9, 9:30 PM, INTL VILLAGE 9
TUE OCT 11, 11:30 AM, INTL VILLAGE 10
Activist Israeli director Undi Aloni sets his latest piece of agitprop to the compelling strains of hip-hop. With his back against the wall due to Israeli oppression and spiralling violence, up-and-coming Tel Aviv rapper Kareem (Tamer Nafar) finds empowerment through his music. The script by Nafar and Oscar-nominee Oren Moverman (The Messenger), proves every bit as complex as Kareem’s rhymes, drawing from the political and personal to paint an evocative picture of contemporary Palestinian existence.

Magnus
BENJAMIN REE, NORWAY, 2016, 76 MIN.
Canadian Premiere
SUN OCT 9, 7:15 PM, SFU-GC
THU OCT 13, 7:15 PM, INTL VILLAGE 10
The title refers to chess phenom Magnus Carlsen, who became world chess champion in 2013 at the tender age of 22 (unsurprisingly, he has been called the Mozart of chess). Benjamin Ree’s chronicle of this young man’s family life and his rise to the top of a notoriously difficult discipline is engrossing and entertaining, no doubt due to both Ree’s deft editing skills and the sheer tenacity of his subject. “Ree’s rousing documentary… taut and paced with drama… is a sure-fire festival sensation.”—Screen

Mean Dreams
NATHAN MORLANDO, CANADA, 2016, 108 MIN.
SUN OCT 9, 4:30 PM, INTL VILLAGE 9
A farm boy (Josh Wiggins) liberates his girlfriend (Sophie Nélisse)—and her abusive dad’s drug money for good measure—in this exquisitely tense and luminously lensed thriller. Given that her dad (Bill Paxton, in a first-rate villainous turn) is a crooked cop, a clean getaway isn’t in the offing. As the young lovers’ flight takes them past the point of no return, they learn what they’re capable of when backed into a corner. “A poetic tale of backwoods crime with first-rate performances…”—IndieWire

Milton's Secret
BARNET BAIN, CANADA, 2016, 89 MIN.
World Premiere
SUN OCT 9, 3:45 PM, PLAYHOUSE
A victim of bullying at school and a witness to his parents’ (David Sutcliffe and Mia Kirshner) tensions at home, young Milton (William Ainscough) retreats into an emotional shell. Fortunately, his enlightened grandfather (Donald Sutherland) arrives on this fraught scene to impart wisdom on how to unburden oneself of such troubles. Eckhart Tolle (The Power of Now) supplied the source material for Barnet Bain’s timeless story about inner peace and empowerment that will resonate with the whole family.

Nakom
KELLY DANIELA NORRIS, T.W. PITTMAN, GHANA/USA, 2016, 82 MIN.
Canadian Premiere
SUN OCT 9, 6:30 PM, RIO
They say home is where the heart is. Well, that maxim is put to the test in this gem of a film. The country is Ghana; our hero is a medical student who returns to his hometown following his father’s death. There he faces a family farm in disarray, his dad’s two feuding widows and many more problems, including the question of his future… “An unassuming but winning ambition-versus-roots tale… [The film] readily captures the specificity of its setting and of local mores.”—Hollywood Reporter

Playing Lecuona
JUAN MANUEL VILLAR BETANCORT, PAVEL GIROUD, SPAIN/CUBA, 2015, 110 MIN.
SUN OCT 9, 9:15 PM, SFU-GCA
Juan Manuel Villar Betancort and Pavel Giroud’s doc will thrill casual fans of Cuban music, while aficionados will be in seventh heaven. That’s because this is one of those comparatively rare films that isn’t content to be just a performance piece, but which holds the music up to the light and explores each silvery note. Three contemporary Cuban piano stars—Chucho Valdés, Michel Camilo and Gonzalo Rubalcaba—take turns paying homage to Ernesto Lecuona, the acknowledged inventor of the Cuban sound.

The Rehearsal
ALISON MACLEAN, NEW ZEALAND, 2016, 102 MIN.
SUN OCT 9, 3:45 PM, CENTRE FOR ARTS
Canadian-born, New Zealand-raised Alison Maclean (remember Crush from VIFF 93?) makes a fine comeback with this deeply felt and superbly directed drama about a group of acting students coming to grips with their personal and professional lives under the tutelage of a great teacher (Kerry Fox, perfect). Unfolding over one school year, the film is honest, profound and beautifully acted. “Narratively teasing, structurally taut and emotionally textured… A drama that’s as piercing as it is potent.”—Screen

Shepherds and Butchers
OLIVER SCHMITZ, SOUTH AFRICA/USA/GERMANY, 2016, 107 MIN.
North American Premiere
SUN OCT 9, 9:00 PM, PLAYHOUSE
In 1987, 164 people, most of them black, were legally put to death in South Africa. Oliver Schmitz’s (the groundbreaking Mapantsula) tense courtroom drama, set in ’87, stars Steve Coogan as a crusading lawyer whose anti-capital punishment position leads him to take on the seemingly open-and-shut case of a young man, traumatized by his job as a government-sanctioned executioner, facing the death penalty for gunning down seven unarmed men. “A rare, disorienting perspective on capital punishment…”—Variety

Sin Alas
BEN CHACE, USA/CUBA, 2015, 84 MIN.
Canadian Premiere
SUN OCT 9, 3:15 PM, RIO
The first American film shot in Cuba since the revolution, Ben Chace’s love story seems simple at first but accrues considerable depth and emotion. Elderly Luis (Carlos Padrón) reads the obituary of a famous dancer—his lover from long ago. His memories and dreams are tinged with a half-recalled melody, a tune that he tries to track down with the help of an amigo. As the song leads Luis on a melancholy journey through a painful but passionate past, Chace immerses us in the rhythms and textures of Havana.

Sweet Dreams
(Fai bei sogni)
MARCO BELLOCCHIO, ITALY/FRANCE, 2016, 134 MIN.
SUN OCT 9, 9:00 PM, RIO
WED OCT 12, 1:45 PM, INTL VILLAGE 10
Continuing his career-long exploration of Freudian issues, Italian master Marco Bellocchio profiles a journalist (Valerio Mastandrea) who’s never come to grips with the passing of his mother (played in flashbacks by Barbara Ronchi). The temporally unmoored narrative sets us adrift through a life prematurely deprived of its most influential figure. “Embracing the melodrama of his source, Bellocchio’s sprawling, virtuosic drama [boasts] a subjectivity simultaneously sentimental and subtly satiric.”—MUBI

Things to Come
(L’ avenir)
MIA HANSEN-LØVE, FRANCE/GERMANY, 2016, 100 MIN.
SUN OCT 9, 6:15 PM, PLAYHOUSE
The great Isabelle Huppert gives a profoundly moving performance as a philosophy teacher who finds her life unmoored by a wholly unexpected divorce in Mia Hansen-Løve’s terrific exploration of one woman’s complex emotional and intellectual response to late-middle-aged trauma. “Hansen-Løve and Isabelle Huppert prove a dream partnership in the director’s gorgeous, heart-cradling post-divorce drama… This is major, many-shaded work even by [Huppert’s] lofty standards.”—Variety

Program Updates | VIFF 2016

Standby Tickets | VIFF 2016

If advance tickets are sold out for a screening, don't despair! A limited number of "Standby Tickets" will be available at the venue just before showtime. If you want to explore this option, arrive at the tehatre early and join the "Standby Line." Be advised: When this line is admitted, it will be one ticket per person - you won't be able to buy tickets for anyone who isn't present.

These upcoming screenings have already sold out of their advance tickets. However we will have a limited number of Standby Tickets available at the door. Please come early!
Standby Tickets | VIFF 2016

While we have good availability left for many of our screenings, tickets are selling quickly for these shows. We recommend that you secure your advance tickets as soon as possible.
Information - VIFF Sep 29 - Oct 14, 2016 viff.org

We're excited to once again be presenting these films in Vancouver's finest auditoriums.
All venue box offices open, 30 minutes before the first screening of the day.

The Centre for the Performing Arts
777 Homer Street (at Robson)

The Cinematheque
1131 Howe Street (at Helmcken)

Cineplex Odeon International Village
88 West Pender Street (at Abbott)

Rio Theatre
1660 East Broadway (at Commercial)
Liquor served. Ages 19+ unless otherwise noted. ID and bag checks are possible.

SFU'S Goldcorp Centre for the Arts
149 West Hastings Street (between Cambie and Abbott inside SFU Woodward's)

Vancity Theatre
1181 Seymour Street (at Davie)
Liquor served. Ages 19+ unless otherwise noted.

Vancouver Playhouse
600 Hamilton Street (at Dunsmuir)
Information - VIFF Sep 29 - Oct 14, 2016 viff.org

The festival's programming will be featured in the following streams:

  • Panorama: Special PresentationsDocumentariesSpotlight on FranceContemporary World CinemaCinemas of India/Iran/Africa/Middle EastCinemas of Australasia/Latin America/USATIFF Films at VIFF – The world's bolde st creators and their exceptional works. The year's most anticipated international films and new discoveries curated specifically for VIFF audiences.
  • Ignite – A showcase of the inspired works emerging from the creative nexus that is British Columbia.
  • True North – A celebration of the extraordinary creativity and craft being demonstrated by Canadian storytellers from coast to coast.
  • Impact – Uncompromising films and insightful discussions that spark action and change the way we see the world.
  • Next – Virtual reality, gaming, music and emerging digital platforms serve as a catalyst for ground-breaking ideas and unforgettable next-level experiences.
  • Gateway – Journey into the compelling cinematic worlds envisioned by some of East Asia's most adventurous artists.
  • M/A/D – Music, art and design receive their deserved big-screen treatment in this aesthetically alluring stream that's enhanced by exhibitions and live performances.
  • ALT – Fantastic cinema that defies traditional classification and creators who push short form storytelling to its limits.
Tickets + Guide
Tickets, Passes + Ticket Packs On Sale Now
Tickets available at viff.org 24 hours a day.
In Person Box Office opens at The Vancouver International Film Centre. 1181 Seymour Street (Mon-Sat: Noon - 7pm, Sun: 2pm - 7pm)

The Complete Festival Guide
Program Guides are now available on-line and for pick up at The Vancouver International Film Centre. For select outlets around town visit here for locations. See here for program announcements.

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