Ottawa Canadian Film Festival 2019

The Ottawa Canadian Film Festival is back for our 3rd year in 2019.

Here are the films you will see at the Arts Court Theatre in Ottawa on November 1 & 2.


OCanFilmFest gratefully acknowledges the financial support of the City of Ottawa.

Feature Films

The Mayor of Comedy: A Canadian Stand-Up Story
– Director: Matt Kelly (Toronto, ON)  
An eye-opening documentary that follows Canadian comedian Sandra Battaglini as she travels the country interviewing the biggest names in the comedy business and attempts to discover why standup isn’t considered an art form in Canada. The film features interviews with over 30 of Canada’s top comics including Scott Thompson (Kids In The Hall), Debra DiGiovanni (Conan), Mark Forward (Fargo), DeAnne Smith (Just For Laughs), Steve Patterson (The Debaters) and K-Trevor Wilson (Letterkenny). [Friday Nov 1, 8 pm]

Nose to Tail
– Director: Jesse Zigelstein (Toronto, ON)  
A talented but abrasive chef (Aaron Abrams – Hannibal, Blindspot) struggles mightily with his personal demons and the relentless pressures of running a high-end restaurant. Over the course of one fateful and increasingly frantic day and night, he faces a rash of private trials and professional tribulations in a desperate bid to beat the odds and save the business that he’s sacrificed virtually everything in his life to build. [Saturday  Nov 2, 8 pm]


Trouble In The Garden
– Director: Roz Owen (Toronto, ON)  
Raven, a radical eco-activist, is jailed for protesting development on disputed Indigenous land. Long estranged from her adoptive family, she never imagined her brother Colin would be the one to bail her out. Compelled to stay at his suburban home, she discovers he’s in real estate – pre-selling houses on the very land she’s trying to save. Adopted, disowned, and now under house arrest, this is a story of reckoning with betrayal – of love, land, and blood. [Saturday Nov 2, 4 pm]

Short Films

Baba Yaga
– Directors: Nicole Sitanski and Cheryl Taam (Vancouver, BC)  
A desperate mother with an incurably ill baby ventures into the dark woods long believed to be the home of Baba Yaga, a mystical witch with the power to change fate. [Saturday afternoon shorts,  Nov 2, 2:30 pm]




Dog Bite – Director: Luvia Petersen (Vancouver, BC)  
A scared dog attacks Jen, a hyper-ambitious career woman, leaving her with an unsightly gash across her face. Jen hides away in a child-like fort, determined to start a “new life”. But in the process, she pushes everyone away. Her dysfunctional family and anxious boyfriend try to coax her back out into the world. But the only person who can get Jen to go outside is Jen. [Saturday afternoon shorts,  Nov 2, 2:30 pm]


Fragile Dream – Director: Isabelle Hayeur (Rawdon, QC)  
Filmed in Australia, in the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. The title refers to “Dreamtime” as the central theme of Aboriginal culture. In their conception of the world, all forms of life are part of a dynamic system of complex interactions. The earth, men, animals and plants are only parts of the same whole. Plunged into an unprecedented environmental crisis we know that this ideal remains an abstraction, a distant dream. Perhaps it is the Western worldview that has caused the imbalances that are now leading to disaster. [Friday and Saturday, Lounge Screen]

Girl in the Hallway – Director: Valerie Barnhart (Ottawa, ON)  
A man who bore witness to the circumstances surrounding a child’s disappearance struggles with the weight of his silence and inaction. Why does ‘Little Red Riding hood’ give Jamie nightmares? It’s been 15 years, and the girl in the hallway haunts him still. This is a testament to locked doors. A lullaby sung by wolves with duct tape and polaroids. Not all children make it out of the forest. Some stories children shouldn’t hear. [Saturday afternoon shorts,  Nov 2, 2:30 pm]


Life Via Rail – Director: Jonny Micay (Toronto, ON) 
The story of Jason Shron, a train enthusiast from Canada who abandoned a prestigious phD program to pursue his dream of a career in the model train industry. [Q&A with director Jonny Micay][Saturday afternoon shorts,  Nov 2, 2:30 pm]




May Flowers – Director: Marianna Phung (Toronto, ON)  
A misunderstanding occurs when Jimmy goes to pick up an order for his boss at May Flowers. Little did he expect how the tables would turn. [Saturday evening shorts,  Nov 2, 6:30 pm]




Newborn – Director: Ray Savaya (Toronto, ON)  
A couple welcomes their first born son into the world. Tensions slowly arise over a disagreement which lead them into questioning their identity. [Saturday evening shorts,  Nov 2, 6:30 pm]




The Order of Things to Come – Director: Tavit Melikian (Montreal, QC)  
A young, recently released ex-con, returns to the man who helped birth his life of crime with an unusual request. [Saturday evening shorts,  Nov 2, 6:30 pm]




Overgrowth – Director: Christian Belisle (Ottawa, ON)  
A couple take a hike to an old ruin and in the process discover how much their relationship has changed. [Saturday evening shorts,  Nov 2, 6:30 pm]




Rise n’ Shine – Director: Silver Kim (West Vancouver, BC)  
During the Klondike gold rush, Tagish First Nation, Skookum Jim, hid millions of dollars’ worth of gold around the Yukon. A hundred years later, Amanda, a small town wife/mother, dreams of opening Rise n’ Shine bakery on the Alaska Highway in memory of her mother. When her loan application is rejected because of her husband’s gambling problem she is spiritually crushed, and kicks Jim out. Later, when she returns to work at Mukluk Annie’s, two armed masked men hold up the restaurant and steal the historic relic “Charlie” believing that there’s gold in its snout. Amanda recognizes the men are her husband Jim and his shady friend, Randy. She volunteers herself as a hostage. After they dodge the RCMP and find a hideout, gold fever inevitably takes over, and Randy tries to steal the gold for himself. Jim and Randy fight, causing Jim to fall 100 feet into a river. Just as Randy is about to run away with the gold, Amanda catches him o guard and knocks him out. As the gold falls into the river, Amanda must choose between saving her good-hearted but very flawed husband or retrieving the sinking gold… [Saturday afternoon shorts,  Nov 2, 2:30 pm]

The Still Life of Annika Myers
– Director: Matthew Blecha (Victoria, BC)
During the Dutch Hunger winter of 1945, Annika Myers traded her family’s treasured painting of a feast for rations. Now, at 84, she has found it, and she wants Evan O’Neill, the diligent retired manager of a grocery store, to help her steal it back. But is it truly the painting she hungers for? Evan, who has something of his own to reclaim, is faced with a difficult but life-affirming choice in The Still Life of Annika Myers. [Q&A with director Matthew Blecha] [Saturday evening shorts,  Nov 2, 6:30 pm]

2019 Festival Jury

Special Thanks to our jury members Niranjalli Varma, Reid Delong, Jean-François Dufault, Rachelle Spencer Mikita, Monique Fuller, Jaime Beaton, Brodie Cotnam, Khadije Taha, Kira Haller and Debbie Wolfenden.

Dates and Venue for #OCanFilmFest2019

Festival Dates: Friday Nov 1 and Saturday Nov 2, 2019
Festival Venue: Arts Court Theatre, 2 Daly Avenue, Ottawa.

Check these links for information about the films and filmmakers we featured in 2017 and 2018.


#OCanFilmFest2019 November 1 and 2 at Arts Court (2 Daly Avenue).
Click here for more info on the films screening this year.