GUELPH FILM FESTIVAL
This year the Guelph Film Festival will take place Nov. 3-6. The Festival showcases Canadian, international, and local documentary films that inspire community engagement and appreciation of the arts by connecting people with stories of global and local relevance.
This year’s theme is the ‘Invention’ as we look at extraordinary people finding creative solutions to issues they face and creating maps for others to follow.
The festival also includes a spotlight to imperilled communities, and women directors (who outnumber male by more than 2 to 1 this year at the festival).
Imperilled community films include: Angry Inuk, Putuparri and the Rainmakers, Kaisa’s Enchanted Forest, Cinema Travellers, and World Famous Gopher Hole Museum.
The festival includes 12 feature length films with post-film discussions, an expanded series of short animated films for children, four visiting directors, three visiting film subjects, plus three short films playing on loop in unusual venues, all packed into four days.
Our programming focuses on three areas: social justice, the environment, and community building. The films range from classic issue based documentaries to genre bending mixes with animation and folktales.
Some of the stories have taken a long time to come together (Putuppari and the Rainmakers was 20 years in the making) while others focus on a very specific moment of time (The Crossing which follows a group of Syrian refugees across the Mediterranean Sea).
The films in the 2016 lineup bring the world to us - with footage from Australia, India, Japan, Syria, Finland, France, Switzerland, Iceland, and Korea. We also have strong representation from home, as half of our films where made by Canadian filmmakers.
Opening night film Cinema Travellers – Showmen in rural India bring cinema to the people, reminding us of how the love if cinema is born.
Spirit Unforgettable – Powerful story of the Canadian band Spirit of the West and their singer John Mann’s struggle with early-onset Alzheimers.
The Crossing (w/short Handel Callender: Global Storytelling Project) – A first-hand account of the perilous journey made by a group of Syrian refugees.
Kaisa’s Enchanted Forest (w/short The Butter Solution) – Fusing animated storytelling and archival footage to tell the story of Lapland’s indigenous Skolt Sami’s people and their struggle in WWII.
8% No Limit – Blind ultra-runner on her adventure running the Bruce Trail end-to-end. 885 km over 20 consecutive days with just 8 per cent vision.
Putuparri and the Rainmakers – Filmed over 20 years, Putuparri is an indigenous Australian reconnecting with his roots and creating inventive ways to reclaim his people’s traditional lands.
Tomorrow (Demain) – The filmmakers travel the globe looking at how activists, organizers and everyday citizens are trying to make the world a better place.
Don’t Blink - Robert Frank – A rare glimpse into the world of 90 year old reclusive artist Robert Frank, outlining his groundbreaking photo and film work. From his seminal book The Americans to films with the Beats and the Rolling Stones, he never stops pushing the boundaries.
Angry Inuk – A new generation of Inuit, using social media and their own sense of humour and justice, are challenging the anti-seal groups and bringing their voice to the conversation.
The Apology – Following three former ‘comfort women’ testify to their experience and ask the Japanese government for an apology to help ensure this chapter in history is neither forgotten nor repeated.
YARN – Traditional crafts of crochet & knitting are brought to the streets and into our lives in new ways.
Closing night film How to Build a Time Machine – Inspired by the HG Wells time machine, two men set out on a journey to build their own, proving that the journey is as important as the destination.
Films for Children
Morning Cartoons – A series of short animated films with the theme of ‘surprise!’ (for ages 4-8)
Breaking the Rules - Humorous and irreverent short films in which the rules do not apply (for ages 9-13)
Both series play on Saturday and Sunday mornings, 10:30 a.m. at various locations.
Three Short films (running on a loop)
Julian [venue: Capacity 3 Gallery]
The Guelph Film Festival has an ongoing series entitled Hidden Histories which was designed to highlight local stories. This year we present Julian a 20 minute film about local personality Julian Holman, a fixture downtown with his pet pigeon. Tu-Fri 12-5/Sat 9-3/Fest weekend Sat and Sun 9-5.
Pickle [venue: Golden Bus - RBC Parking Lot]
An ode to the capacity of humans to care for all creatures through their sometimes greatly protected existence until their occasionally sudden and unfortunate demise. Th: 5-7p.m./Sat 9-11 a.m. and 5-7 p.m./Sun 2-4 p.m.
World Famous Gopher Hole Museum [venue: Golden Bus - RBC Parking Lot]
Taxidermed gophers are dressed up as members of a small agricultural community in elaborate dioramas, idealizing the daily life of the town. Fr 5-7 p.m./Sat 2-4 p.m./Sun 9-11 a.m.
Visiting Directors, Producers and Film Subjects
Jay Cheel - Director (How to Build a Time Machine)
Tiffany Hsuing - Director (The Apology)
Lisa Lightbourn-Lay - Director (8% No Limit)
Kaija Siirala - Director (The Butter Solution) Short film playing w/ Kaisa’s Enchanted Forest
Ben Murray - Producer (Spirit Unforgettable) Rhonda-Marie Avery - Subject (8% No Limit)
Julian Holman - Subject (Julian - short film looped at Capacity 3 Gallery)
Handel Callender - Subject (Handel Callender: Global Storytelling Project - short film at The Crossing screening)
Festival passes and tickets for select films are available at Meridian Credit Unions and the Bookshelf. Regular passes are also available online at guelphfilmfestival.ca
Festival passes $50, Student/Senior passes $35, advance tickets $10-12. Tickets range from $5-12.
Events take place at various locations in Guelph. Information regarding events and venues can be found at guelphfilmfestival.ca