9 Muses of Star Empire
Mon. Sep 30, 9:00 pm, Vancity
Tue. Oct 1, 4:00 pm, Intl Village 8
Wed. Oct 9, 9:15 pm, Cinematheque
K-pop as you’ve never seen it! Lee Harkjoon gets incredibly intimate access to the grooming and launch of girl band 9 Muses (the endless rehearsals, the rivalries) and nails the whole system. Dragons & Tigers Award nominee.
Al Helm: Martin Luther King in Palestine
Sun. Sep 29, 7:00 pm, Intl Village 10
Tue. Oct 1, 11:00 am, SFU-GCA
Thu. Oct 3, 11:00 am, Cinematheque
An African-American gospel choir goes to Palestine to sing in a Palestinian play about Martin Luther King Jr. It isn't just the glorious strains of gospel music that wash over the West Bank in Connie Field's (Freedom on My Mind) scintillating new film. An impassioned cultural exchange ensues, new friendships are forged, eyes are opened and attitudes are altered. Buy Tickets
Apocalypse: A Bill Callahan Film Tour
Thu. Sep 26, 9:15 pm, Vancity
Mon. Sep 30, 4:30 pm, Rio
Bill Callahan (aka Smog), a truly great artist likened to Scott Walker playing with Calexico, took his latest album Apocalypse on the road, with director Hanly Banks in tow. Her impressionistic film will bring a huge smile to the face of anyone who appreciates superb music and sound. "A clutch of terrific performances captured by a rapt but also visually skilled fan.” - MusicFilmWeb. Buy Tickets
Flashback Memories 3D
Mon. Sep 30, 2:15 pm, Intl Village 10
Sat. Oct 5, 9:15 pm, Intl Village 10
Midway between a rave concert and a Koreeda documentary, Matsue Tetsuaki’s trippy film (in hypnotic 3D) looks at Goma, a Japanese didgeridoo player who has trained himself to play again after an accidental brain injury. Small film, big experience! Buy Tickets
Sun. Oct 6, 7:00 pm, Vancity
Mon. Oct 7, 4:00 pm, Playhouse
Director Louise Archambault avoids the obvious traps in this thoughtful telling of the love between Gabrielle, a young woman affected by a neurodevelopmental disorder, and a boy she meets through her choir. With the stirring participation of famous Quebec singer Robert Charlebois, this is a crowd-pleaser with integrity. Winner, Audience Award, Locarno 2013. Buy Tickets
Lisa Barros D'Sa, Glenn Leyburn
Sat. Sep 28, 9:15 pm, Intl Village 10
Sun. Oct 6, 4:15 pm, Rio
Forget the Troubles and get your "Teenage Kicks" instead! Set in 70s Belfast, Lisa Barros D'Sa and Glenn Leyburn's exhilarating biopic celebrates the gregarious godfather of Northern Irish punk. "An impassioned, funny and monumentally likable myth-making comedy." - Time Out. Buy Tickets
The Great Flood
Wed. Oct 9, 2:00 pm, Centre for Arts
Fri. Oct 11, 7:00 pm, Vancity
Director Bill Morrison weaves together compelling archival footage of the great Mississippi flood of 1927, complemented by a very well-considered Bill Frisell original score. That flood led to an exodus of sharecroppers, all heading north. The result? Chicago blues, rhythm & blues and, ultimately, rock 'n' roll...
The flood was the most destructive in American history--27,000 square miles were inundated. The migration fueled the evolution of acoustic blues, including artists who witnessed the flood such as Charley Patton ("High Water Everywhere") and Memphis Minnie ("When the Levee Breaks"), as well as influencing electric blues bands that thrived in cities like Memphis, Detroit and Chicago.
Much of the incredible archival footage here (there is no narration) is taken from sources like the Fox Movietone Newsfilm Library and the National Archives. All the film documenting the catastrophe was shot on volatile nitrate stock, some from the air, some from the land, much from in the midst of the swelling river itself. The partially deteriorated film stock figures prominently in Morrison’s aesthetic--the bubbles and washes of decaying footage are associated with the destructive force of the rising river, the celluloid seeming to have been bathed in the same water as the images it depicts. These layers of visual information--paired with Frisell’s musical mix that combines roots influences with his own inimitable stylings--become contemporary again. The Great Flood’s imagery is visible through history’s prism, one that dances with the sound of modernity.
The Great War: Director's Cut
Yan Yan Mak
Sun. Sep 29, 12:15 pm, Vancity
Sat. Oct 5, 7:00 pm, Intl Village 10
Two iconic 90s Hong Kong pop groups, fabulous glam-pop Grasshopper and brilliantly satirical Softhard, mount a joint concert in 2012 and sell out 12 consecutive days. Yan Yan Mak captures not just the shows, but their fans’ fervour and HK’s passionate attachment to its ever-changing identity. Buy Tickets
The Italian Character:
The Story of A Great Italian Orchestra
Fri. Oct 4, 6:30 pm, Centre for Arts
Sun. Oct 6, 1:30 pm, SFU-GCA
As polyphonic as a great orchestra at its peak, Angelo Bozzolini's behind-the-scenes chronicle of Rome's famous Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia is a stirring, fascinating and insightful portrait. Enhanced by archival material of famous conductors and soloists who've played with the orchestra, it is a grand trip, indeed.
My Prairie Home
Sun. Sep 29, 9:15 pm, Rio
Tue. Oct 1, 4:00 pm, Rio
A true Canadian iconoclast, acclaimed transgender country/electro-pop artist Rae Spoon revisits stretches of rural Alberta and confronts memories of growing up queer in an abusive, evangelical household. Lyrical and alluring, Chelsea McMullan's docu-musical questions our traditional definitions of "home" and celebrates the places in between, be they in music, geography or gender.
Pussy Riot: A Punk Prayer
Maxim Pozdorovkin, Mike Lerner
Sun. Sep 29, 11:10 am, Intl Village 10
Thu. Oct 10, 9:30 pm, Rio
The saga of Russian feminist punk collective Pussy Riot is well-known by now, but the lives of the three brave young women beneath the balaclavas much less so. Mike Lerner and Maxim Pozdorovkin change that with this smart and exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the group. "The most important film at Sundance this year."--Moviemaker Magazine Winner, Special Jury Prize: World Cinema - Documentary, Sundance 2013. Buy Tickets
Rap is War (Viva Cuba libre)
Fri. Sep 27, 9:30 pm, Intl Village 10
Tue. Oct 1, 1:40 pm, Intl Village 10
Thu. Oct 10, 12:15 pm, Cinematheque
Refused airplay, the nevertheless very popular Cuban protest rappers Los Aldeanos soldier on, playing secret shows island wide. Jesse Acevedo's vital documentary offers incredible insight into Cuba now and is a testament to the power of both guerrilla filmmaking and underground music. Winner, Audience Award, Miami 2013.
Vojta Lavička: Ups and Downs
(Vojta Lavička: Nahoru a dolu)
Sat. Oct 5, 10:50 am, Intl Village 8
Tue. Oct 8, 9:15 pm, Rio
Despite enviable accomplishments, Romany musician, activist and reporter Vojta Lavička still wrestles with self-destructive tendencies. Unfolding over 16 years, Helena Trestíková’s intimate documentary examines the lot of the Czech Republic's marginalized Roma, while a sweeping Romany music soundtrack grabs your heartstrings and never loosens its grip.