Anote’s Ark

Spotlight on Canadian Films - OCanFilmFest

Montreal filmmaker Matthieu Rytz‘s debut film Anote’s Ark details the plight of the tiny island nation Kiribati (formerly called Gilbert Islands), which is in danger of being engulfed by rising water levels or wiped out by patterns of extreme weather.

“The country will be drowned in the next 50 years, no matter the investments and agreements” states Rytz in his Kickstarter pitch for the film.  “Anote’s ark will be the first full-length shot in the Republic of Kiribati. I am so honored and I feel like I need to tell the story of this nation before it completely drown out.”

The film enjoys its world premiere at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival this week.

Here’s the trailer.

 

In Their Words: The Power of Poetry

Spotlight on Canadian Films - OCanFilmFest

In Their Words: The Power of Poetry is a documentary by filmmaker Randy Kelly which features local spoken-word artists and their stories.

Originally broadcast on CBC Ottawa TV in the Summer of 2017, the film is now streaming on CBC’s online platform.  Follow the powerful stories as the poets share their hopes, fears, struggles and dreams for the future by clicking on the image below or via this link.

Featured poets include JustJamaal ThePoet (one of Ottawa’s new Poets Laureate), CauseMo, DMP, King Kimbit and Apollo the Child.

Taking My Parents to Burning Man

Spotlight on Canadian Films - OCanFilmFest

Vancouver filmmaker Bryant “Spry Bry” Boesen decided “rip his nearly retired parents from their routine and throw them into an adventure of a lifetime.” Collaborating with filmmaker Joel Ashton McCarthy, they launched a crowd funding campaign to create a documentary following their trip to Burning Man.  Described as a debaucherous arts festival, Burning Man isn’t your average family vacation.  According to the festival’s official website: “Once a year, tens of thousands of people gather in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert to create Black Rock City, a temporary metropolis dedicated to community, art, self-expression, and self-reliance. In this crucible of creativity, all are welcome.”

The resulting documentary Taking My Parents to Burning Man is described as a parental coming-of-age story has had a successful festival run and a theatrical run at the Rio Theatre in Vancouver.   The film is now available on a variety of streaming and VOD platforms.  Here’s the trailer.

The Fruit Machine

Spotlight on Canadian Films - OCanFilmFest

On November 28th, 2017, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivered a formal apology in the House of Commons on behalf of the Canadian government for its past treatment of LGBTQ2 Canadians.

In her new feature-length documentary The Fruit Machine, Ottawa filmmaker Sarah Fodey speaks with survivors of that four-decade anti-gay witch-hunt.   Here’s the trailer.

Continue reading “The Fruit Machine”

Diving with Selvi

Spotlight on Canadian Films - OCanFilmFest

“Selvi, like so many girls living within India’s patriarchal culture, is forced to marry at a young age, only to find herself in a violent and abusive marriage. One day in deep despair, she chooses to escape, going to a highway with the intention of throwing herself under the wheels of a bus. Instead she gets on the bus, choosing to live.  She goes on to become South India’s first female taxi driver.

Elisa Paloschi is a documentary director, producer, cinematographer and photographer who is drawn to stories with a human voice. She runs Eyesfull, a Toronto- based independent production company dedicated to making non-fiction documentaries with social relevance that reflect the diversity of the human condition.” — Official website for the film

Paloschi grew up in Kingston and encountered 18-year old Selvi while on travel during her volunteer work at an NGO called Odanadi, which runs a shelter for girls and women who have suffered gender based violence in South India. Continue reading “Diving with Selvi”