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.
Based on a true story about an urban couple who go camping in the Canadian wilderness, writer/director Adam MacDonald‘s directorial feature film debut Backcountryis described as “a full blown, full blooded horror film about the apathy of nature and the folly of human resistance in the face of its violent shrug. There are no cartoonish, cross-eyed, cannibalistic hillbillies lurking in these deep, dangerous forests. There is simply the sheer panic of being swallowed by the unknown…and the very real possibility of being ripped to shreds by one very hungry bear.” — Fangoria
“[The movie] came to me when I was lying in a tent with my wife and I heard something large walking around at the crack of dawn. I was scared, and luckily for us, whatever it was walked away, and left me with an idea.” says Adam MadDonald about the film that was shot in 17 days in North Bay and Squamish, B.C.
Miles and Audrey are two post-adolescents whose wit and charm can’t make up for a debilitating lack of ambition. Although they claim to have the wanderlust of moving from Saskatchewan to the big city, they do nothing proactive to get there. Instead, they remain in their aimless routine, merely fantasizing on an ideal grown up life; that is, until adulthood is abruptly thrust upon them in the form of a missing condom, a pregnancy test, and a few invaluable life lessons they’re likely to forget.
Director Matt Yim was born and raised in Regina, Saskatchewan. He is a graduate of the University of Regina where he studied film production. — Official website
Basic Human Needs is part of producer Avi Federgreen‘s and IndieCan Entertainment’s INDIECAN10K initiative, which has selected seven teams from across Canada to put together debut features for $10,000. The film is produced by Allan Roeher & Matthieu Belanger.
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.
Ben’s at Home is a quirky comedy about a 30-year-old guy who has made the unusual decision never to leave the house after a bad break-up. Thanks to the power of the internet, has finds that abiding by this decision is easier than he thought.
The film is the first feature of award award-winning Canadian director Mars Horodyski. An alumna of the Canadian Film Centre’s Director’s Lab, she also co-wrote and produced the film. Lead actor, Producer and co-writer Dan Abramovici is a founding member of Awkward Silence sketch comedy troupe. The film has screened and won awards in several festivals around the world and is now streaming on Netflix Canada.
Ben’s character reminds me of “Physical Phil” from October Road (2007-2008), one of my favourite TV series of all time. Mars’ debut feature film is one I really enjoyed and is just the kind of film I would like to make in the future. Check it out.