VIFF 08 | DAY TWELVE




ONLY PICK: The Hunger



We’ve spent the last two weeks catching up on like, 5 years of Prison Break, and are all about prison right now. So it’s well timed that British artist turned director, Steve (not that) McQueen’s film about the life of IRA prisoners, in particular Bobby Sands, during a notorious hunger strike in Ireland’s infamous Maze Prison back in the 1980s should prove to be such an unblinking and deeply effecting re-examination of the emotional and political struggles people went through in an effort to gain independence and humanity. It is one of those rare achievements where tone and theme pour out of every frame but there is such honest precision that it’s tempered with intelligence and grit and is way better, in a lot of ways than Prison Break.


ONLY suggests…


10:00 am – GR7 – The English Surgeon
02:30 pm – GR3 – Welcome To the Sticks
04:00 pm – GR7 – Control Alt Delete
06:00 pm – GR5 – Jay or p.77
07:15 pm – GR6 – Achilles and the Tortoise
09:15 pm – GR3 – Hunger or p.143
09:30 pm – GR2 – Let the Right One In


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge

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VIFF 08 | DAY ELEVEN




ONLY PICK: Control Alt Delete

Nevermind that the film festival is the perfect place to see those foreign films you’ll never have the chance of watching again; it is also the perfect place to see local and Canadian films you’ll probably never have the chance of seeing again. Any way, Cam Labine has finally gone and done it. He’s gone and cast his brother in his movie about techno-sexual dysfunction. We could go into length about what that type of dysfunction entails, but you can probably figure it out. Plug and socket is all we’ll say. Add to that the fact that Cam’s a great guy and his movie is funny, if not a little fucked, and you’ve got yourself a reason to go to the pictures tonight. AOT


ONLY suggests…


10:45 am – PCTThe Atom Smashers
11:00 am – VCTCharly
02:30 pm – GR3 – Chelsea on the Rocks
03:00 pm – GR5 – Action Boys
03:30 pm – GR7 – Fifty Dead Men Walking
07:00 pm – GR7 – Control Alt Delete or p.97
07:15 pm – GR6 – The Equation of Love and Death
07:30 pm – GR2 – After School or p.68
09:15 pm – GR3 – Under Bombs or p.129
09:30 pm – GR7 – Let the Right One In or p.139


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge

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VIFF 08 | DAY TEN




ONLY PiICK: Romance of Astre and Celadon



Tonight we’re giving it up to the classic foreign film cliche. An Eric Rhomer film is about as film festival as you can get. Old school. In fact he’s been making “morality films” since the 1950s. That’s a pretty long time. Brought to you by the French consulate, this is a story of tough love, where she (a shepherdess) gets mad at him (a shepherd) and well, it’s a whole lot of Romeo and Juliet, but it’s by a French master so….. AOT


ONLY suggests…


10:00 am – GR7 – O’Horten
10:45 am – PCTThe Juche Idea
01:00 pm – GR7 – Wendy and Lucy
01:30 pm – GR2 – Blind Loves
02:00 pm – GR4 – Growing Op
06:00 pm – GR5 – The Atom Smashers or p.173
06:20 pm – GR4 – Erik Nietzsche:The Early Years
06:40 pm – GR3 – Romance of Astrea and Celadon
07:00 pm – RIDThe Equation of Love and Death
07:15 pm – GR6 – The Song of Sparrows
08:45 pm – GR5 – Louise Bourgeois:The Spider, the Mistress and the Tangerine
09:15 pm – RIDWelcome To the Sticks or p.157
09:45 pm – GR7 – Sparrow


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge

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VIFF 08 | DAY NINE




ONLY PICK: Faubourg Treme



No this is not another Katrina documentary. Shot, for the most part, before the hurricane happened and edited afterward, the film is about New Orleans. Specifically the historic Treme district; one of the oldest black communities in America, home to the American civil rights movement and the home of jazz. It has a rich and cultural past filled with music and struggle, and it now lays devastated. But beyond the devastation and chaos that the hurricane brought and that bad government has allowed to remain, is a wonderful history of resiliency and strength told through the eyes of people who live there. People who know the stories and need to tell them. And we should want to hear them. AOT


ONLY suggests:


10:00 am – GR7 – Il Divo
11:00 am – VCTMust Read After My Death or p.175
11:30 am – GR3 – Sparrow
01:30 pm – GR2 – Hansel and Gretel
02:00 pm – GR4 – Paruthiveeran
04:30 pm – GR2 – Linewatch
04:30 pm – PCTLet Him Be
06:45 pm – RIDFifty Dead Men Walking or p.89
08:45 pm – GR5 – Faubourg Treme: The Untold Story of New Orleans
09:45 pm – RIDChelsea on the Rocks


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge

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VIFF 08 | DAY EIGHT




ONLY PICK: Waltz With Bashir



While there is a crazy-good South Korean revision of the Hansel and Gretel story as well as Jim Finn’s The Juche Idea, a revolutionary experimental documentary on North Korean leader Kim Jung-Il, we just can’t wait for Waltz With Bashir, the Israeli-German animated semi-autobiographical documentary about life during the first Lebanon war. There’s a powerful legacy of animated films that have tackled the theme of war and its devastating effect on the human soul. From the Japanese classics like Barefoot Gen and Grave of the Fireflies to Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis, these films manage to somehow isolate the pain and confusion of life in a warzone through their animation. Ari Folman’s artful movie is no exception. The film is built from stories “drawn” from the memories of nine different young soldiers, and is as powerful an indictment of the savagery of war as you are likely to see on the screen this year. AOT


ONLY suggests…


10:30 am – GR2 – The English Surgeon
12:00 pm – GR5 – What the Heart Craves
03:00 pm _ GR5 – Faubourg Treme: The Untold Story of New Orleans or p.174
03:45 pm – VCTThe ‘Thank You’ Girls
04:00 pm – GR7 – Romance of Astrea and Celadon or p.156
06:30 pm – GR7 – Hansel and Gretel or p.57
07:30 pm – GR2 – O’Horten
09:00 pm – GR4 – Growing Op or p.102
09:15 pm – GR3 – Serbis
09:30 pm – PCTThe Juche Idea or p.189
09:30 pm – GR7 – Waltz with Bashir


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge

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VIFF 08 | DAY SEVEN




ONLY PICK: The “Thank You” Girls



Who doesn’t love a good drag queen road movie? Priscilla was a blast despite the fact most of the drag queens weren’t actually gay, but hey, that’s acting. This Filipino contribution to the drag queen road movie cannon might be a little rougher around the edges but it still has all the scarves, drama and tube tops you would hope for from this kind of thing. Gathered together on a rickety old bus a troupe of drag queens travels across the country to participate in a series of beauty pageants, each with her own agenda. Some are doing it for love, others for revenge and some just for the hell of it. But where Priscilla operated on a fairy tale kind of vibe, here the mood is less “joie de vivre” and a little more “sweat and sparkles”. And we ask you: who doesn’t want more sweat and sparkles in their life? AOT


ONLY suggests…


10:30 am – GR2 – Serbis or p.77
11:30 am – GR4 – Helen
02:30 pm – GR3 – Wendy and Lucy or p. 149
03:30 pm – GR2 – Plastic City
03:45 pm – VCTMime-Mime
06:45 pm – GR2 – Action Boys
07:00 pm – VCTThe Thank You Girls or p.78
07:00 pm – PCTMust Read After My Death
09:00 pm – GR7 – Il Divo
09:00 pm – PCTLet Him Be or p.104
09:15 pm – GR3 – I Am Good or p.117


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge

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VIFF 08 | DAY SIX

ONLY PICK: mime-mime



It was kind of a tough call between this little indie gem and the sweaty and sexy Asianic Brazilian gangster fantasy movie Plastic City. But in the effort to maintain some independent credibility we’re going to push for the Japanese coming of age movie about an aimless girl who befriends an old classmate, only to realize his father and her mother are going to get married, effectively killing off any hope for romance between them. A while back we wrote about Wong Kar-wai’s early film Days of Being Wild and how there is this precious emptiness that lingers between the characters. That sense is equally true here, but instead, it inhabits our protagonist Mokoto as she drifts through life. Her friend Nakaji hopes to instill a sense of reality in her but seldom do self perception and reality go hand in hand. Directed by first time filmmaker Sode Yukiko, the film is sweet and funny, sincere and real in its discussion of sex, gender and modern day feminine identity. AOT


ONLY suggests…


03:00 pm – GR1 – Who Is Afraid of Kathy Acker?
04:00 pm – GR7 – Achilles and the Tortoise
07:00 pm – RIDThe Song of Sparrows
08:45 pm – GR5 – Cat Dancers
09:15 pm – GR3 – Possibility of an Island
09:30 pm – GR7 – Three Monkeys
09:45 pm – GR2 – Plastic City or p.63
09:45 pm – VCTMime-Mime or p.71


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge

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VIFF 08 | DAY FIVE


ONLY PICK: Action Boys



Sorry screenwriters, but it’s the stunt people who are the true unsung heroes of the movies. Unless your name is Woo-ping Yuen – only one of the word’s best stunt coordinators – you are probably unknown and badly bruised. This documentary takes a look at the South Korean film industry and the young men who try out for a place in the Seoul Action School. But it is a tough ride. A really tough ride. Both the physical and mental demands are so intense only 3 of 36 applicants stay with it long enough to actually find work. There are broken limbs, teeth, egos and dreams all crammed into this biting little documentary. And while many filmmakers would simply settle for some thrills and spills in their exploration of stunt men, to his credit, director Jung Byung-Gil manages to explore more than just the obvious. He gets to the meat of the matter and looks at the psychology behind these guys’ choices and looks at how their bodies are used and fantastically abused. AOT


ONLY suggests…


10:00 am – GR7 – Eternity Man
10:30 am – GR2 – Three Monkeys
01:30 pm – GR2 – Action Boys or p.79
02:00 pm – GR4 – C’est Pas Moi, Je Le Jure
03:00 pm – GR5 – Mock Up on Mu
03:00 pm – GR1 – High Noon
03:45 pm – VCTLucky 7
07:15 pm – GR6 – Paruthiveeran
09:00 pm – GR4 – United Red Army
09:15 pm – GR3 – Helen


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge


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VIFF 08 | DAY FOUR


ONLY PICK: Three Monkeys

Turkish director, Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s brooding and bruised movie is an emotional-noir, where characters are drawn towards their darker impulses despite the obvious danger they know they will face. This immaculately composed movie, absorbs its character’s colours and shrouds us in a looming, gloomy cloud. When a man agrees to take the fall for a crime in exchange for money it not only leaves him powerless but also his family vulnerable. When his wife takes up with her husband’s boss – the man who committed the crime in the first place – it sends their son over the edge. But all of this is muted and tempered with a careful ambiguity that leads the characters deeper into the oily cloud of their lives. AOT


ONLY suggests…


10:30 pm – GR2 – Cat Dancers or p.51
12:00 pm – GR5 – Circus Rosaire or p.51
03:00 pm – GR1 – JCVD
04:00 pm – RIDThree Monkeys or p.141
06:45 pm – PCTTropical Manila
07:15 pm – VCTLucky 7 or p.79
09:00 pm – GR5 – Mock Up on Mu or p.146
09:15 pm – GR3 – Revanche
09:30 pm – RIDBlind Loves
09:30 pm – GR1 – High Noon or p. 65


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge


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VIFF 08 | DAY THREE


ONLY PICK: J.C.V.D



There’s a lot to see tonight, it’d be a tough call to use this space and only pick one as THE movie to make sure you go see. So we’ll use the same space and pick 3. So, first of all, Erik Nietzsche: The Early Years, directed by Jacob Thuesen and written by Lars Von Trier is a pseudo-autobiographical comedy about the foibles of Lars Von Trier’s film school experience, sort of. If you’re taking a film class we totlly suggest you see this one.The second option is the Southern Indian epic Paruthiveeran; a sprawling tragi-comedy romance chalk full of song, love and violence. Not bad.
Having gotten this far into writing about those other movies we’re about to totally make the first part of this whole piece irrelevant, (except for the fact that now you know about those two other movies), and go ahead and say that actually, THE one movie we’re gonna see tonight is J.C.V.D with “The Muscles from Brussels” playing…well…himself as an aging action star – which he is – who doesn’t even get cast for the movie they are making about him. He then does get the part to play himself and as they are making the movie about hm, his life kind of takes a real-life movie turn and he gets mixed with loan sharks and drug dealers. So yeah, totally smart and funny self aware aging Jean Claude Van Damme movie trumps great Indian movie and Lars Von Trier’s “even film school students get the blues”. You heard it here first. We bet it’ll be cute. AOT
But speaking of washed up action stars check this out.


ONLY suggests…


10:00 am – GR7 – The Song of Sparrows or p.124
10:30 am – GR2 – Blindness
11:00 am – GR4 – Helen or p.142
01:00 pm – GR7 – Erik Nietzsche:The Early Years or p.118
01:30 pm – PCTTropical Manila or p.81
02:30 pm – GR3 – Ballast
03:30 pm – GR7 – The Good the Bad and The Weird or p.58
04:30 pm – GR2 – Charly
06:20 pm – GR4 – Achilles and the Tortoise or p.68
07:00 pm – GR2 – Linewatch or p. 145
07:30 pm – GR1 – The English Surgeon or p.171
09:00 pm – GR4 – C’est Pas Moi, Je Le Jure or p.96
09:30 pm – GR6 – Chelsea on the Rocks or p.187
09:30 pm – GR7 – JCVD or p.33
09:30 pm – RIDParuthiveeran or p.123


Location Guide: GR1,2,3,4,5,6,7=Granville 7 | VCT=Vancity Theatre | PCT=Pacific Cinematheque | RID=Ridge

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