THE UNOFFICIAL JACKET OF FILM CREWS EVERYWHERE Director, Vitória Vasconcellos
Welcome to the 21st edition of the Available Light Film Festival! Dákwänī'į yū shäw ghànīddhän. (We are happy to see all of you)
Dan’ ch’e. Hello there, how are you?
Shàw níthan, merci, gunalchîsh, thank you for coming to 21st Available Light Film Festival.
After a few challenging years of a mostly virtual festival experience, we are delighted to bring back the magic of experiencing stories from around the world gathered as a community in a dark cinema. We are thrilled to meet you between February 9th and 19th at the iconic Yukon Theatre, the Old Fire Hall and the Yukon Arts Centre, as well as on our virtual platform.
As always, the ALFF team could now have done it without you, our loyal and always curious audiences. We are extremely grateful for your support, patronage, and participation. We live in an extraordinary place on this earth in an engaged community that shares our passion for independent cinema and arts.
We are thrilled to bring you a variety of local, national, and internationally acclaimed films. The ALFF 2023 opening film, Eternal Spring, directed by Jason Loftus is an unmissable and exhilarating tale of determination to speak up for political and religious freedoms, no matter the cost. Eternal Spring was selected as Canada’s Best International feature film entry for the Academy Awards 2023.
Some of other Canadian features include the Yukonmade sci-fi film Polaris by KC Carthew, Geographies of Solitude by Jacqueline Mills, The Ballad of Caveman Bill by David Curtis (world premiere), Ever Deadly by Chelsea McMullen and Tanya Tagaq, as well as TIFF Top 10 Canadian films of 2022: Viking, Brother, I Like Movies, Riceboy Sleeps and Rosie. International film highlights include EO by Jerzy Skolimowski, Living by Oliver Hermanus, Aftersun by Charlotte Wells, and All the Beauty and the Bloodshed by Laura Poitras– all with Oscar 2023 nominations. We have programmed a tribute screening of Blood Quantum to remember and honour of the incendiary work of Mi’gmaq director Jeff Barnaby who passed away in 2022.
For a third year, Available Light spotlights Indigenous, Black, Persons of Colour and LGBTQ2S+ filmmakers with the Made in the North Award, with the generous
support of Canada Goose. ALFF is happy to award cash prizes to the three outstanding films by underrepresented filmmakers in ALFF Official Selection. The Made in the North Award is designed to advance the talent of BIPOC and LGBTQ2S+ Canadian filmmakers with a focus on those living in the northern territories and regions of Canada. There are three award categories: Best Canadian Feature Film, Best Canadian Short Film and Best Northern Short Film.
The Yukon Film Society is honoured to host many talented creatives each year at Available Light. Thank you to all the filmmakers, creatives, industry delegates and documentary participants who will take part in Q&As, ALFF Industry Forum events, concerts and ALFF Creator talks. We’re also happy to announce that more than 50% of the films we’re presenting are BIPOC or LGBTQ2S+led and directed productions. A commitment to justice, equity, diversity & inclusion principles in film needs to happen in the cinema and not just on set. We thank our audiences and partners for their support in championing emerging and diverse voices.
As always, we could not present this multi-faceted festival without the continuous and generous support of numerous Yukon businesses and partner non-profits. We know it’s been a challenging couple of years, and we acknowledge your on-going support. Shäw níthän. The Yukon Film Society also acknowledges the ongoing annual support of Canada Council for the Arts, Yukon Arts Operating Fund, Yukon Lotteries, The City of Whitehorse, Yukon Government and Telefilm Canada. This support makes it possible for us to plan, produce and present this festival.
Please join us in thanking all the artists, filmmakers and industry representatives for sharing their work and experience at ALFF and ALFF Industry, as well as the sponsors, community organizations and hard-working volunteers and staff that make Available Light 2023 possible.
Shäw níthän, gunalchîsh, mahsi cho, merci, gracias, chi miigwech, Qujannamiik and thank you for coming to Available Light and making this a very special annual community event.Andrew Connors, Festival Director Kinga Binkowska, Co-programmer
Paige Galette 2023 ALFF PROGRAMMING COMMITTEE MEMBERS
Max Fraser ALFF INDUSTRY PRODUCER
Brian Bromley FESTIVAL PRODUCER
Daniel Little DEVELOPMENT & SPONSORSHIP COORDINATOR
Even Stepanian TECHNICAL DIRECTOR
Garrett Cluett GRAPHIC DESIGNER
Kathleen Napier MEDIA & MARKETING COORDINATOR
Ashley Swinton OLD FIRE HALL VENUE MANAGER
Alexandra Knowles ALFF PITCH EVENT COORDINATOR
Bran Ramsey ONLINE CUSTOMER SUPPORT
Talia Woodland ALFF TRAILER
YUKON FILM SOCIETY BOARD OF
ALFFACCELERATOR LEAD FACILITATOR
ErikPinkerton FESTIVAL PHOTOGRAPHER
PRINT TRAFFIC AND PROJECTION
David De Lara PROJECTIONISTS
Norah Paton PRODUCTION ASSISTANTS
Naomi Mark ALFFACCELERATORMENTOR
Design Station WEBSITE DESIGN AND MANAGEMENT
Yukon Theatre (Cinema): 304 Wood St.
Yukon Arts Centre: 500 University Dr.
Old Fire Hall: 1105 Front St.
The Creative Warehouse: 1148 Front St.
Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre: 1171 Front St.
ALFF TICKETS & PASSES
Single Tickets: $16 Regular / $13 for YFS Members, Seniors, Youth under 16
Purchase Tickets at alff.ca
5 Film Pass: $70
10 Film Pass: $140
All Access Pass: $240
Purchase Passes at alff.ca/passes
ALFF Online Screenings:
ALFF Online Single Tickets: $11
All Access Online Pass: $75
Full listings and tickets available at alff.ca
ALFF INDUSTRY TICKETS & PASSES
ALFF Industry Passes: $85
ALFF Industry Online Pass: $40
Grants access to all ALFF Industry events, including: panels, workshops, and one-on-one meetings with industry decision-makers and public funders.
Pre-registration for one-on-one meetings is required – email email@example.com to confirm your registration.
ALFF Industry Passes can be purchased online at alff.ca/passes
Individual Workshop Tickets: Individually priced. See the ALFF Industry Schedule of events at alff.ca
Please note: One-on-One Meetings with Industry decision-makers and public funders are for pass holders only. Pre-registration is required.
GENERAL FESTIVAL INFO
All-Access Online Passes do not guarantee a virtual seat - you must redeem for individual tickets to online events. Space in some online screenings will be limited.
No outside food or drink allowed in the Yukon Theatre or the Yukon Art Centre.
Please turn off cell phones. No recording devices allowed.
We’reproudtohelpbringsomeofthebeststories fromaroundtheworldtotheYukonbysupporting theAvailableLightFilmFestival.
MESSAGE FROM THE PREMIER, YUKON GOVERNMENT
It’s my pleasure to welcome you to the Available Light Film Festival. It is with great excitement that we are again gathered in person for the Available Light Film Festival, along with the added benefit for online viewing opportunities. The Available Light Film Festival has an entertaining and diverse selection of programming with over 100 films, screenings, creator talks, live concerts, a video crawl, and an industry forum. This year’s festival also includes 15 made-in-the-Yukon films, providing great opportunities to celebrate Yukon filmmakers and their work.
The Government of the Yukon is proud to support the Yukon Film Society, the Yukon Cinema, and the Available Light Film Festival.
Thanks to all the organizers and volunteers for putting together this celebrated festival, and to all the filmmakers and artists for sharing their talents with Yukon audiences.
Enjoy the show!Ranj Pillai Premier
MESSAGE FROM THE MAYOR OF THE CITY OF WHITEHORSE
On behalf of the City of Whitehorse, I would like to congratulate the Yukon Film Society on its 21st anniversary of the Available Light Film Festival, and thank everyone who makes this annual festival happen. This festival provides movie-lovers from across the community a chance to immerse themselves in films from around the globe. We are so fortunate to have a festival here in our community that celebrates local and national talent, as well as the Yukon’s Indigenous culture and history.
We wish everyone a wonderful festival, and hope all will enjoy the extraordinary selection of Northern, Canadian, and international cinema.Mayor Laura Cabott City of Whitehorse
MESSAGE FROM THE INTERIM EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR AND CEO, TELEFILM CANADA
We could not be more excited to return to events that allow us to celebrate the artistry of film and showcase Canadian creatives around the world and at home. That is why we are proud to support the Available Light Film Festival!
At Telefilm, our mission is to elevate authentic storytelling. Our priority is to reflect the diversity of our country on screen and bring representation to the forefront of our initiatives and programs.
We want to thank and congratulate Available Light Film Festival for its continued support in building connections and collaboration in promoting and exporting Canadian content and talent for the world to see.Francesca Accinelli Interim Executive Director and CEO, Telefilm Canada
MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT AND CEO, CANADA MEDIA FUND
The Canada Media Fund is delighted to partner with the Available Light Film Festival—our tenth consecutive year supporting this fabulous and important event in one of my favorite places in the country! To the organization and its team: congratulations on delivering, year after year, on your mission to bring amazing stories from Canada and the world to Whitehorse. Have a great festival!Valerie Creighton President and CEO, Canada Media Fund
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MADE IN THE NORTH AWARDS
MADE IN THE NORTH AWARDS PRESENTED BY CANADA GOOSE
Award winners will be announced on February 17th, 2023
Available Light Film Festival is thrilled to partner once again with Canada Goose in awarding cash prizes to three films directed by underrepresented filmmakers in our lineup. Canada Goose embraces diversity in all its forms and definitions, including technique and passion that transports storytelling to screen. The Made in the North awards are selected by a jury of diverse film professionals.
Eligibility is open to all feature films and short films in Official Selection by Black, Indigenous, people of colour, and LGBTQ2S+ filmmakers in Canada. Each winner will receive a cash award in celebration of their excellent contribution to Canadian cinema. Here are the eligible films in each category.
MADE IN THE NORTH AWARD – BEST CANADIAN FEATURE FILM
Before I Change My Mind by Trevor Anderson
Bones of Crows by Marie Clements
Brother by Clement Virgo
Ever Deadly by Chelsea McMullen and Tanya Tagaq
Framing Agnes by Chase Joynt
The Klabona Keepers by Tamo Campos, Jasper Snow-Rosen, Rhoda Quock
L’Inhumain by Jason Brennan
Riceboy Sleeps by Anthony Shim
Rosieby Gail Maurice
The Empress of Vancouver by Dave Rodden Shortt
When Time Got Louder by Connie Cocchia
Unarchived by Hayley Gray and Elad Tzadok
MADE IN THE NORTH – BEST CANADIAN SHORT FILM
Alambic: By Winds and Tides by Bogdan Anifrani-Fedach
Alambic: Solid Ground by Beatriz Carvalho
At Dusk by Miryam Charles
Kokum with Love by Kim Stadfeld
Mold by Shelby Atwood Strangling Wolf and Stevie-Ray Atwood Strangling Wolf
Pony by Chala Hunter
Rumination by Ashleigh Vaillancourt
Scaring Women at Night by Karimah Zakia Issa
Three Things We Won’t Talk About by Jessie Craig Roche
The Chase by Gurjeet Kaur Bassi
Tibi by Twoyoungmen Jarret
Tiny by Ryan Haché and Ritchie Hemphill
Wherever You Are, Wherever I Am by Kay Chan
MADE IN THE NORTH – BEST NORTHERN SHORT FILM
SCOPE: YUKON, NORTHWEST TERRITORIES, NUNAVUT, NUNAVIK, LABRADOR AND NORTHERN REGIONS OF PROVINCES
ELIGIBLE FILMS: The Fire Dancer by Lancelot Burton and Agnieska Pajor Heartbeat of a Nation by Eric Janvier
Imalijirit by Tim Anaviapik Soucie and Vincent L’Hèrault
Okpik: A Tiny Village in the Arctic by Tiffany Aylik and Kylik Kisoun Taylor
Tlingit Samurai by Douglas Joe
Trapper Radio Series - Dehcho Region by Lawrence Nayally, Wesley Hardisty
Trapper Radio Series
- Mackenzie Delta Region by Leanne Goose, Louie Goose, Wade Vaneltsi
Trapper Radio Series - Sahtu Region by Leela Gilday, Jay Gilday, Dylan Jones
Trapper Radio Series
- South Slave Region by Tyler Hawkins, Brandon Kikoak, Jaimie Kikoak, Aaron Kikoak, Craig Allard
WELCOME TO AUDIENCE CHOICE AWARDS
AUDIENCE CHOICE AWARDS
After attending an in-cinema screening, you will receive a paper ballot to rate the film you've seen. Please rate every feature and midlength film you see.
Once you finish watching a virtual film that is eligible for audience awards, you will be able to cast a vote on the film page.
The results of this balloting will determine the awards for:
• Best Canadian Documentary
• Best Canadian Feature Fiction
• Best International Film
AUDIENCE CHOICE AWARDS
- BEST CANADIAN DOCUMENTARY (50 MINUTES+)
The Ballad of Caveman Bill Doug and the Slugs and Me
The Empress of Vancouver
Eternal Spring (長春)
Geographies of Solitude
The Klabona Keepers
Okay!: The ASD Band Film
Okpik: A Little Village in the Arctic Part of the Pack
Voices Across the Water
BEST CANADIAN FEATURE FICTION
Before I Change My Mind
BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM
All The Beauty and the Bloodshed Broker (Beurokeo)
Stepping Softly On the Earth
The Smell of Money
Whetū Mārama - Bright Star
AVAILABLE LIGHT CINEMATOGRAPHY AWARD
PRESENTED BY WARNER BROS DISCOVERY ACCESS CANADA
Available Light Cinematography
Award for Canadian Cinematographers who self-identify as a woman, BIPOC, LGBTQ2+ and/or as a person with a disability. This is a juried award.
$1,500 for Cinematography in a Short film
$1,500 for Cinematography in a Feature film
Cast your ballot to indicate your rating from 1 (really not to my taste) to 10 (excellent).
We want to know what you think about the films – rate every eligible film you see!
MUSIC JEREMY PARKIN
FRIDAY FEBRUARY 10, YUKON ARTS CENTRE
ADMISSION IS INCLUDED WITH A TICKET TO BONES OF CROWS SCREENING.
Jeremy Parkin is an Indigenous artist, producer, and performer from the Kwanlin Dün First Nation in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory. Blending influences from artists such as Shlohmo, Burial, Nosaj Thing, and SBTRKT; Jeremy creates detailed and textured soundscapes to paint vivid pictures throughout his music.
In the summer of 2022, he received a nomination for “Producer of the Year” at the International Indigenous Hip Hop awards. Jeremy is also one half of the producer and MC duo known as “LOCAL BOY” with Kelvin Smoler. Jeremy produced the entirety of LOCAL BOY’s 2022 EP release titled “ONE FOR JAMES”.
MUSIC JORDY WALKER AND NICOLAS HYATT
FRIDAY FEBRUARY 10, 10PM, THE CREATIVE WAREHOUSE
SPECIAL TICKET PRICE: $18 DOORS OPEN: 9:30PM
Jordy Walker (he/him) is a film composer, multi-instrumentalist, music producer, and sound artist based in Whitehorse. Since studying guitar at a young age, touring in experimental rock bands, immersing himself in electronic music and modern minimalism, he has arrived at a distinct musical style.
Nicolas Hyatt (they/he) is a francoontarian pianist and composer living in Whitehorse whose artistic practice centres around collaborative creation and community building. Their recent projects include the pop band Loon Town, the DIY hip-hop duo CLout gAMe, the psych rock band Future States, which has released four records, and the cello / synth duo Parler bien (with Jane Chan).
DEAR STAR TREK: A LOVE LETTER WITH A SIDE OF BEEF
CO-PRESENTED WITH NAKAI THEATRE.
SUNDAY FEBRUARY 12, 7PM, YUKON THEATRE
In this live story-telling event Christine Genier talks Indigenous Futurism in Science Fiction and the impact and obligations in pop culture media. Join Christine on star date 47634.44 (February 12) for a fun, teasing breakdown of Star Trek, Representation, and The Problem with Chakotay.
Christine Genier Wolf Clan Woman and a citizen of the Ta’an Kwäch’än Council. She is a broadcaster, journalist, writer, poet, performer, apprentice language keeper, culture keeper, aspiring matriarch, mother, daughter, sister, and wife. In her work, Christine shares a lived experience that spans over four decades of bridging culture and recovering the Indigenous Space with those prepared to engage. She is a gatherer of stories and moderator of talks.
INDIGENOUS SHORT FILMS
THURSDAY FEBRUARY 16 |
KWANLIN DÜN CULTURAL CENTRE
Free admission | Presented with the support of the Council of Yukon First Nations
ALFF OPEN AIR FIRESIDE SCREENING, 8 PM
A screening of 3 family-friendly films directed by Indigenous filmmakers. Dress warm and bring a seat cushion!
DIR. RYAN HACHÉ, RITCHIE HEMPHILL, 2022, BC | 16 MIN
‘Nakwaxda’xw Elder Colleen Hemphill tells the story of her life as a youth growing up in a float house. Tiny is a very apt title for this beautiful film. Tiny, in that a complete world from memory is reproduced in clay miniature as the set and characters. Tiny also, in that it captures the minutiae and nuance of small human gestures, the touch of one hand to another, the small changes in expression a wrinkle in a forehead makes, or the way one sips a coffee.
HEARTBEAT OF A NATION
DIR. ERIC JANVIER, 2022, AB | 20 MIN
On a beautiful sunny day in Northern Alberta, a river surrounded by green trees runs gently through the traditional lands of the Chipewyan Prairie Dene First Nation. As birds softly chirp, a father makes a tobacco offering to the river and reaches his hands below the water’s surface to pull out a caribou hide. Nearby, his young child watches. Today they will learn from their father how to make a caribou drum.
ALFF VIDEO CRAWL
TRAPPER RADIO SERIES: SAHTU REGION
DIR. LEELA GILDAY, JAY GILDAY, DYLAN JONES, 2022, NT | 22 MIN
A 5-part film series showcasing 20 + NWT artists in their local regions talking about their art, living through the pandemic, and sharing stories and music about their connections to the North and the land. In this episode, siblings Jay and Leela Gilday share stories and songs of growing up in the Sahtu region of Northwest Territories.
PERFORMANCE AND PARTY
FRIDAY FEBRUARY 10, 9PM, THE CREATIVE WAREHOUSE SPECIAL TICKET PRICE: $18
At the end of the crawl, come and watch a modern dance performance and then shake loose your own vibes with DJ Vicenté until midnight. Licenced event. 19+
WITH SADIE SIEGREFF, EMILY BROOKS, AND EMILY JONES DANCE AND VIDEO PROJECTION | 5 MIN
Healing Reflections is a film and live performance installation and touches on the beautiful, cold fragility of winter in the north. The project explores the movement of the body in shadow work throughout the northern winter. The film will have glimpses of light and warmth that we so rarely get during the long, dark winter months. Sadie’s practice is to research human identity and expression that explores their connection to people and the natural environment around her.
DIR. CHARLOTTE WELLS, 2022, UK/ USA | 102 MIN
The strong resemblance and stronger rapport between Calum (Paul Mescal), 30, and Sophie (Frankie Corio), his 11-year-old daughter, has them frequently mistaken for siblings. Away on a familyof-two vacation at a discount Turkish resort, the pair often conduct themselves like impish kids playing hooky. Prone to manic spells, Calum showers Sophie with affection and whatever else his meager budget might allow. All of this in a desperate bid to stave off a depressive episode that looms like the Sword of Damocles. As Aftersun builds to its deeply affecting finale, we’re reminded how life’s turning points often arrive without warning.
Content advisory: coarse language, nudity.
ALL THE BEAUTY AND THE BLOODSHED
DIR. LAURA POITRAS, 2022, USA | 122 MIN
Academy Award-winning documentarian Laura Poitras’ documentary is an epic, emotional and layered story about internationally renowned artist and activist Nan Goldin. Told through the artist’s slideshows, intimate interviews, ground-breaking photography, and rare footage of her personal fight to hold the Sackler family and their company Purdue Pharma, maker of OxyContin, accountable for the overdose crisis.
Content advisory: accident trauma, scenes of surgery, drug use, mature themes, sexual content, nudity, coarse language.
THE BALLAD OF CAVEMAN BILL
DIR. DAVID CURTIS, 2023, YUKON | 52 MIN SCREENING SPONSOR: AIR NORTH
AKA Klondike Caveman. World premiere. Caveman Bill has lived in a cave next to the Yukon River overlooking the town of Dawson City for 20+ years. This humorous documentary portrait explores one caveman’s resiliency, adaptability and sustainability.
Filmmaker David Curtis in attendance for post-screening Q&A.
BEFORE I CHANGE MY MIND
DIR. TREVOR ANDERSON, 2022, ALBERTA | 89 MIN
A film that gives us a lot to chew on: a love letter to 80s Edmonton, a first love/coming out story between two boys, an achingly awkward look at grade eight social life, an absurd romance between bad parents, and a lurid, if somewhat accurate portrayal of the egos of amateur theater-makers. Named by IndieWire as one of “10 Must-See Movies at the 2022 Locarno Film Festival,” praising its “soft and transportive ’80s aesthetic,” and notes that the film “seems determined to confront the challenges and triumphs of self-becoming with the unwavering honesty of someone who remembers them both.”
BLOOD QUANTUM BONES OF CROWS
DIR. JEFF BARNABY, 2019, QUEBEC | 98 MIN
This ALFF 2023 tribute screening remembers incendiary Mi’gmaq filmmaker, Jeff Barnaby, who passed away in 2022 at the age of 48.
The dead are coming back to life outside the isolated Mi’kmaq reserve of Red Crow, except for its Indigenous inhabitants who are strangely immune to the zombie plague.
As the citizens of surrounding cities flee to the reserve in search of refuge from the outbreak, the community must reckon with whether to let the outsiders in — risking not only their own extinction, but also humanities. Further accentuated by animated chapter breaks that instill a comic-book aesthetic, Barnaby takes advantage of the canvas zombie films that regularly afford for cultural critique, exploring racism, colonialism, and the very real threat of extinction that Indigenous communities have experienced for generations.
In English and Mi’kmaq with English subtitles.
Content advisory: implied sexual violence, explicit violence, frightening scenes, drug use, coarse language, sexual content.
BONES OF CROWS
DIR. MARIE CLEMENTS, 2022, BRITISH COLUMBIA | 127 MIN
In these troubled and lopsided times, we need our storytellers to help us understand our inheritance, be it pain or privilege, and to lay the intellectual and emotional groundwork not only for reconciliation, but for reparation and restoration. Dene/Métis writerdirector Marie Clements (whose previous films The Road Forward and Red Snow were both ALFF selections) squares up to the challenge with this bold, necessarily harrowing tale of oppression and resilience which spans the greater part of the 20th century.
In English, Cree, ʔayʔajuθəm, and Italian with English subtitles.
Content advisory: content relating to residential schools; child abuse, sexual and psychological abuse, racism.
Associate producer, Leena Minifie in attendance for post-screening Q&A.
DIR. KORE-EDA HIROKAZU, 2022, KOR/ JPN | 129 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: MIDNIGHT SUN COFFEE ROASTERS
With his newest film the lauded Japanese filmmaker, Hirokazu Kore-eda (Shoplifters), brings to audiences this beautifully crafted and achingly touching crowdpleaser about an unconventional family formed under the strangest of circumstances.
The film follows two brokers who sell orphaned infants, circumventing the bureaucracy of legal adoption, to affluent couples who can’t have children of their own. After an infant’s mother surprises the duo by returning to ensure her child finds a good home, the three embark on a journey to find the right couple, building an unlikely family of their own.
In Korean with English subtitles.
Recommended for ages 15+ for mature themes.
DIR. CLEMENT VIRGO, 2022, ONTARIO | 119 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: EDGEWATER HOTEL
Clement Virgo (The Book of Negroes) makes a brilliant return to feature filmmaking with this propulsive adaptation of David Chariandy’s celebrated novel. Set against the backdrop of suburban Scarborough, Brother follows siblings Michael (Lamar Johnson) and Francis (Aaron Pierre) as they strive to justify the sacrifices of their devoting mother (Marsha Stephanie Blake) and realize their own ambitions: for Francis, that’s a career in hip-hop; for Michael, it’s the love of Aisha (Kiana Madeira). However, fate has other plans for this pair and all those they hold dear.
Content advisory: police violence, themes of racism.
DOUG AND THE SLUGS AND ME
DIR. TERESA ALFELD, 2022, BRITISH COLUMBIA | 88 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: DIRECTORS GUILD OF CANADA - BC DISTRICT
A POV documentary following filmmaker Teresa Alfeld’s journey uncovering the story of her childhood best friend’s dad, Doug Bennett, leader of the legendary 1980s Canadian party band Doug and the Slugs.
More than just another rock doc, this film is as much a bittersweet commentary on the elusive nature of success in the music industry; that energizing, enervating altar for ambition and despair. It also becomes a very touching reverie about friendship, its limitations and considerable consolations – as well as a fun time portal to the Vancouver of the late 70s and 80s.
Director Teresa Alfeld in attendance for post-screening Q&A.
THE EMPRESS OF VANCOUVER
DIR. DAVE RODDEN-SHORTT, 2022, BRITISH COLUMBIA | 90 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: WINTERLONG BREWING CO.
A cinematic and intimate collision of drag, queer history, and performance art, this musical and irreverent documentary follows trans icon Oliv Howe, as she prepares for the 40th anniversary of her coronation.
Oliv always looks absolutely fabulous. After all, she was the 10th Empress of the Vancouver Dogwood Monarchist Society, a crown bestowed to her in 1981. In Oliv’s story of resilient self-actualization, relayed with wit and compassion, we are transported to Vancouver’s past drag subculture, and to the deep-seated ignorance, suspicion and homophobia faced by the queer community as a whole. This is fascinating social history, but also a celebration of proud lives lived out loud.
DIR. JERZY SKOLIMOWSKI, 2022, POL/ ITA/ UK | 86 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: RE/MAX ACTION REALTY
The world is a mysterious place when seen through the eyes of an animal. EO, a grey donkey with melancholic eyes, meets good and bad people on his life’s path. He experiences joy and pain, endures the wheel of fortune which randomly turns his luck into disaster and his despair into unexpected bliss. But not even for a moment does he lose his innocence.
In Polish, English, French, Spanish and Italian with English subtitles.
Content advisory: animal cruelty, violence.
ETERNAL SPRING (長春)
DIR. JASON LOFTUS, 2022, ONTARIO | 91 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: CANADA MEDIA FUND & TELEFILM
In March 2002, a state TV signal in China was hacked by members of the banned spiritual group Falun Gong. Their goal is to counter the government narrative about their practice. In the violent aftermath, Falun Gong practitioner and comic book illustrator Daxiong (Justice League, Star Wars) is forced to flee to North America. Combining present-day footage with 3D animation inspired by Daxiong’s art, Eternal Spring (長春) retraces the event on its 20th anniversary. This animated documentary brings to life an unprecedented story of defiance told through eyewitness accounts of persecution and artistry. Eternal Spring (長春) represents Canada in the race for Best International Feature Film at the 2023 Oscars.
In Mandarin and English with English subtitles.
Writer, director Jason Loftus and producer, Masha Loftus in attendance.
DIR. CHELSEA MCMULLAN AND TANYA TAGAQ, 2022, NU/ QC | 90 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: MOLOTOV AND BRICKS TATTOO
Ever Deadly weaves concert footage with stunning sequences filmed on location in Nunavut, seamlessly bridging landscapes, stories and songs with pain, anger and triumph--all through the expressions of Tanya Tagaq, one of the most innovative musical performers of our time.
DIR. CHASE JOYNT, 2022, CAN/ USA | 75 MIN
Framing Agnes turns the talk show format inside out in response to the media’s ongoing fascination with trans people. The film breathes life into six previously unknown stories from the archives of the UCLA Gender Clinic in the 1950s.
An incredibly important, thematically dense film. It offers a rich and nuanced story about how queernesses involving trans persons in the 1960s, were contained and framed by the narrow, and subjective opinion of male members of medical academia and television.
Recommended for ages 13+ for mature themes.
GEOGRAPHIES OF SOLITUDE
GEOGRAPHIES OF SOLITUDE
DIR. JACQUELINE MILLS, 2022, QC/ NS | 103 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: ECLIPSE NORDIC HOT SPRINGS
Geographies of Solitude is an immersion into the rich ecosystem of Sable Island, guided by naturalist and environmentalist Zoe Lucas who has lived over 40 years on this remote sliver of land in the Northwest Atlantic Ocean. Shot on 16mm and created using a scope of innovative eco-friendly filmmaking techniques, this feature-length experimental documentary is a playful and reverent collaboration with the natural world. Zoe leads us among wild horses, seals and bugs, through peaks, valleys, seasons and stars. The film tracks its protagonist’s labor to collect, clean and document marine litter that washes up on the island shores.
I LIKE MOVIES
DIR. CHANDLER LEVACK, 2022, ONTARIO | 99 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: SHAUNAGH STIKEMAN, BARRISTER AND SOLICITOR
A cheeky film nerd stands on the threshold of adulthood. We’re going back to 2002, a year when video rental was huge. Lawrence and Matt are film lovers who dream of becoming great filmmakers. They spend all their time watching movies. Lawrence gets a job at the local video shop, where he becomes close with his boss, the grown-up and attractive Zita. At the same time, he loses contact with Matt, and his mother says that they cannot afford to send him to New York to study film, so he has to settle for university in Canada. Is his filmmaking dream crushed before it even gets going?
Content advisory: themes of suicide, sexual abuse, and mental distress.
THE KLABONA KEEPERS
DIR. TAMO CAMPOS AND JASPER SNOW-ROSEN, 2022, BRITISH COLUMBIA | 69 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: DRIVING FORCE
The Klabona Keepers is a fierce account of the Tahltan Nation’s struggle to protect the Klabona Sacred Headwaters, an important natural habitat in northwest British Columbia, from commercial mining. The documentary intersperses verité cinematography with intimate interviews. It is an in-depth account of the different methods of resistance used by Indigenous Elders, which include blockades and tense stand-offs with police and mining industry workers. Powerful moments of reflection are felt throughout the film as the trauma of residential schools and forced relocations are brought to light.
Content advisory: triggers for residential school, drug and alcohol abuse.
DIR. MARYNA ER GORBACH, 2022, UKR/ TUR | 100 MIN
DIRECTING AWARD: WORLD CINEMA DRAMATIC, SUNDANCE 2022
The story of a Ukrainian family living on the border of Russia and Ukraine during the start of the war. Irka refuses to leave her house even as the village gets captured by armed forces. Caught between Russian separatists and the expectation of loyalty to Ukraine, the couple try to balance the urgent and conflicting demands of civil war.
Shot in elaborately choreographed long takes, Klondike is a feat of intricate staging, and Er Gorbach uses unity of space to illustrate the ever-growing divisions among her characters. Tense, haunting, and tragic, this is a truly powerful work of art.
In Ukrainian, Russian, Chechen, and Dutch with English subtitles.
Ukraine’s official submission for Best International Film for the 2023 Oscars.
DIR. JASON BRENNAN, 2021, QUEBEC | 85 MIN
Mathieu is a brilliant neurosurgeon whose perfect life is falling apart; impending divorce, job loss, substance abuse, and a mid-life crisis. The sudden death of his father forces him to return home to Anishinaabe territory, a place he has tried to avoid since his youth. Mathieu agrees to go and deposit his father’s ashes and wishes to find himself at the same time. Being away from the city promises to be a nice getaway until Mathieu realizes that he is now the prey of an evil creature known as the Wendigo. Mathieu’s pilgrimage quickly becomes a nightmare that will change him forever.
In French with English subtitles.
Content advisory: frightening and grisly scenes.
DIR. OLIVER HERMANUS, 2022, UK/ JPN/ SWE | 102 MIN
SPONSOR: YUKON ENERGY
Living is the story of an ordinary man, reduced by years of oppressive office routine to a shadow existence. At the eleventh hour he makes a supreme effort to turn his dull life into something wonderful. An English-language adaptation of Akira Kirosawa’s script of “Ikiru” (1952), set in London in the 1950s.
Content advisory: infrequent references to illness and death - little detail; frequent portrayals of alcohol and tobacco use in a recreational context.
DIR. DANIEL ROHER, 2022, USA/ CAN | 98 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: ANDREW SMITH
Shot as the story unfolded, Navalny is a fly-on-the-wall documentary thriller about anti-authoritarian Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny. Recovering in Berlin after nearly being poisoned to death with the nerve agent Novichok, he makes shocking discoveries about his assassination attempt and bravely decides to return home--whatever the consequences.
In English and Russian with English subtitles.
Content advisory: some offensive language.
Nominated for Best Documentary Feature, 2023 Academy Awards
OKAY! THE ASD BAND FILM
DIR. MARK BONE, 2022, ONTARIO | 75 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: WHAT’S UP YUKON
Okay! The ASD Band Film follows the members of The ASD Band, four talented autistic musicians, as they embark upon the journey of writing their first original album and performing their first live show.
Director Mark Bone takes time to get to know the bandmates: from Jackson’s love of Elvis, Ron’s background in classical piano, Spenser’s punk rock sensibilities, and Rawan’s perfect pitch. The collaborative nature of their songwriting and performing shines through in their excitement, while also allowing them to open about their hopes and fears, what it means to be autistic and perceived by the world, and how they are (mis)understood by friends and family.
OKPIK: LITTLE VILLAGE IN THE ARCTIC
DIR. TIFFANY AYALIK AND KYLIK KISOUN TAYLOR, 2022, NWT/ BC | 44 MIN
This eye-opening documentary is about one family’s pursuit to become fully self-sufficient, living off the land in a remote location on the north end of the Mackenzie River.
Using local materials and Traditional Knowledge Inuit/ Gwich’in Hunter, Kylik Kisoun Taylor will re-establish and re-imagine the lost practice of building an Inuvialuit log house with a sod roof with the intention of creating housing security in his Traditional Territory of the Beaufort Delta. Kylik builds his future at his off-grid camp and creates an opportunity for language and cultural revitalization.
PART OF THE PACK
DIR. ISABELLE GROC AND MIKE MCKINLAY 2022, BRITISH COLUMBIA | 82 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: JACKLEG FILMS
Long feared, the wolves that have survived in places such as Vancouver Island now live in a habitat where humans are advancing. At the same time our fascination for the wolf — as the quintessential symbol of something wild and dangerous — has become stronger. As urban lifestyles have increasingly removed us from nature, some of us want to find that connection again. Encountering a wolf can satisfy our craving for the natural world. Some people have even taken a step further by bringing a wolf or wolf-dog into their homes (literally into their living rooms) as a way to feel closer to the wild. The boundary between wild and domesticated is shifting.
LE LOON RANGER DES HUARD
DIR. PAUL DAVIS, 2022, YUKON | 23 MIN
In Canada’s North-West, a library worker caught up in the opioid crisis, observes loons by bike, canoe and by snorkeling. As a result of his obsession, the loons call to him in places and times far from their normal habitat and seasonal migratory patterns.
In French with English subtitles.
Director Paul Davis in attendance.
AVAILABLE LIGHT FILM FESTIVAL
PICTURING A PEOPLE: GEORGE JOHNSTON, TLINGIT PHOTOGRAPHER
DIR. CAROL GEDDES, 1997, YUKON | 51 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: YUKONSTRUCT
Carol Geddes’ documentary about trail-blazing Tlingit photographer and hunter, George Johnston, is itself a vanguard in Yukon history given that it’s the first major film production that tells a story of the Yukon written, directed and produced by a Yukon filmmaker. Join ALFF for a special screening in celebration of the 25th anniversary of this powerful film!
This unique portrait of Kaash KlaÕ (George Johnston), a photographer who was a creator of portraits and a keeper of his culture, is a told from the perspective of a filmmaker who is of the same people; the Teslin Tlingit, Deisleen Kwáan, who live on the lands surrounding Teslin Lake. A trapper, fur trader, entrepreneur and photographer, Johnston cared deeply about the traditions of the Tlingit people, and he recorded a critical period in the history of the Tlingit Nation. The images he recorded—of special moments and everyday occasions—became a beacon to the young and a testament to the golden times of the Tlingit people. As Geddes says, his legacy was “to help us dream the future as much as to remember the past.”
This documentary is a unique portrait of George Johnston, a photographer who was himself a creator of portraits and a keeper of his culture.
Director Carol Geddes in attendance for post-screening Q&A.
DIR. LUKE GRISWOLD-TERGIS, 2022, USA | 101 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: YUKON CONSERVATION SOCIETY
Fifteen years ago, Russian geophysicist Sergey Zimov published an article in the journal Science showing that frozen arctic soils contain twice as much carbon as the earth’s atmosphere. These soils are now starting to melt. Haines, Alaska filmmaker Luke Griswold-Tergis embarks on an inexplicable, deeply embedded reportage on Zimov and his son who are convinced they can reverse, or at least help prevent climate change by returning to the climate of pre-ice age times where massive grazing ungulates roamed what is now the Boreal Forest by gathering any large, wooly beasts they can find and transporting them to the most remote corner of Siberia: a place called Pleistocene Park.
In English and Russian with English subtitles.
DIR. KC CARTHEW, 2022, ON/QC/YT | 89 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: YUKON FAT HORSE COMPANY
This award-winning made-in-the-Yukon eco-action fantasy is set in the year 2144: think Mad Max on skidoos.
Viva Lee plays Sumi, a ten-year-old female raised by a polar bear in a frozen dystopian female world who must evade capture by a group of warriors called the Morads. When Sumi stumbles across Frozen Girl, an unlikely friendship is forged and together they race ahead of the vindictive hunters towards the only guiding light Sumi knows - the POLARIS star.
Producer Max Fraser plus many cast and crew in attendance for post-screening Q&A.
Recommended for ages 13+ for violent and disturbing scenes.
“Funnels a smorgasbord of influences into a fastpaced, all-female eco action fantasy.” - Allan Hunter, Screen International
DIR. ALEX LIOTTI, 2022, BRITISH COLUMBIA | 67 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: SOLVEST INC.
British Columbia’s Old Growth forests represent one of the last lines of defence against climate change, and contain scientific properties we barely understand - yet mismanagement and greed have left less than 2.6% of them standing. Only one of hundreds of valleys (outside of parks) remains entirely uncut on Vancouver Island - Fairy Creek (Ada’itsx). An Indigenous led movement to prevent the cutting of this last Old Growth watershed has now become Canada’s largest act of civil disobedience, and the government response has been alarming.
Rematriation explores scientific, cultural, economic and sociopolitical perspectives, as citizens fight to protect the last big trees in BC from being felled.
REVIVAL69: THE CONCERT THAT ROCKED THE WORLD
DIR. RON CHAPMAN, 2022, CANADA | 97 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: MUSIC YUKON
“The second most important event in rock & roll history” was a one-day event held at the University of Toronto’s Varsity Stadium called the Toronto Rock & Roll Revival. An incredible back-door story of how a life-changing concert came together. Director Ron Chapman reveals a series of colourful characters, murky deals and broken promises, culminating in John Brower, a young struggling promoter, putting his life on the line (literally) in order to achieve his goal. Included in the lineup were Chuck Berry, The Doors and Alice Cooper among many. Told with engaging animation, graphics, actual audio footage from John Lennon’s personal Apple office phone recordings and many interviews.
DIR. ANTHONY SHIM, 2022, BRITISH COLUMBIA | 117 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: DIRECTORS GUILD OF CANADA - BC DISTRICT
Raising her young son Dong-hyun in Vancouver’s suburbs in the 90s, So-young, a South Korean immigrant and single mom, desperately wants to instill a sense of pride in the boy. In turn, he only wants to be considered “Canadian” in hopes of avoiding bullying at school. Wedding autobiographical elements with more universal concerns, Shim achieves an exquisite balance in this gorgeous coming-of-age drama. The film’s even pacing and gorgeous score carry the audience through both heart-breaking and uplifting drama.
In English and Korean with English subtitles.
Content advisory: themes of racism, mental illness and drug use.
DIR. GAIL MAURICE, 2022, QUEBEC | 92 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: YUKON PROVISIONS
A film about family, love, and misfits, Rosie tells the story of a young, orphaned, Indigenous girl who is forced to live with her reluctant, street-smart Aunty Fred (Frédérique). Rosie is thrust into the fringes of 1980’s Montréal into the care of Fred, who just lost her job, is on the verge of eviction, and who looks and sounds nothing like her. Fred introduces Rosie to her two best friends who are glamorous, gender-bending street workers. In the end, Rosie transforms the lives of these characters and finds love, acceptance, and a true Home with her new chosen family of glittering outsiders.
In English, French and Cree with English subtitles.
Content advisory: themes of Sixties Scoop and homelessness.
DIR. ALICE DIOP, 2022, FRA | 122 MIN
This progressively claustrophobic courtroom drama of a woman accused of infanticide is told through the stoic point of view of a young novelist, pregnant herself and increasingly uneasy. Her own family history, doubts, and fears about motherhood are steadily dislodged as the life story of the accused woman is gradually revealed. From a stern upbringing in Senegal to gradual isolation from family and society on her arrival in Europe, the accused’s experiences expose the traumas of racism and emotional manipulation that can remain unspoken while insidiously and irrevocably corroding a person’s well-being.
In French with English subtitles.
Content advisory: racism, themes of violence, anxiety and mental distress.
DIR. JEAN LUC HERBULOT, 2021, SEN/ FRA | 84 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: KLONDIKE KETTLE CORN
Shot down after fleeing a coup and extracting a drug lord, the legendary mercenaries known as the Bangui Hyenas -- Chaka, Rafa and Midnight -- must stash their stolen bounty, lay low and escape back to Senegal. When they take refuge at a holiday camp, they do their best to blend in with fellow guests; a mute named Awa and a policeman who may be on their tail, but it’s Chaka who happens to be hiding the darkest secret of them all. Unbeknownst to the others, he’s brought them there for a reason and once his past catches up to him, his decisions have devastating consequences.
In French and Wolof with English subtitles.
Content advisory: violence, reference to child abuse.
DIR. REED HARKNESS, 2022, USA | 87 MIN
A mother’s disappearance sends pain and mystery through her family. Sam Now follows her son’s 25-year search for answers. A documentary essentially about the trauma that is passed on through the generations, Sam Now is a playful, tender and personal quest for re-connection with family and healing.
“Reed Harkness has made a wonderful once-ina-lifetime film. Filled with intimate family footage, Sam Now feels like a novel or a well-crafted drama, but it’s all too true. It’s a truly artistic documentary, which should be seen and embraced by discerning audiences in North America and abroad.”- Marc Glassman, POV Magazine
DIR. STACEY TENENBAUM, 2022, QUEBEC | 78 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: ZERO WASTE YUKON
Discover the strangely beautiful places where things go to die and meet the people who collect and restore the world’s scrap.
Scrap scratches beneath flaking paint and rusting metal to reveal the beauty in the ugliness we leave behind. Scrap is a love letter to the things we use in our daily lives. This cinematic documentary tells the stories of people who have a connection to objects that have reached their ‘end of life’. Together their stories convey a deeper environmental and human message about our relationship to things, the sadness we feel at their eventual loss, and the joy of their rebirth.
In English, French and Thai with English subtitles. Director Stacey Tenenbaum in attendance for post-screening Q&A.
THE SMELL OF MONEY
DIR. SHAWN BANNON, 2022, USA | 84 MIN
What is the price some pay for the world’s pork? Smithfield Foods is the largest producer of pork in North America and its North Carolina facility processes tens of thousands of pigs per day, in a state where it is legal to spray untreated hog waste into the air. The Smell of Money is the unbelievable and appalling story of a multi-billion-dollar corporation poisoning the air, water, and lives of their own neighbours—most of them from the Black community. Local activists take on one of the world’s most powerful companies in a fight for their rights to clean air and pure water.
SMOKING CAUSES COUGHING (FUMER FAIT TOUSSER)
SMOKING CAUSES COUGHING (FUMER FAIT TOUSSER)
DIR. QUENTIN DUPIEUX, 2022, FRA | 80 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: ASSOCIATION FRANCO-YUKONNAISE
A group of superheroes who uncannily resemble the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers many of us will remember from TV. They are called the Tobacco Force, and they kill supernatural monsters from the cosmos using nicotine and carbon monoxide. The good role models that they are, they never touch cigarettes themselves. Since they are burnt out from saving the world, their boss – the perpetually drooling rat Didier – tells them to go and relax in the woods. By the campfire they try to frighten each other with scary stories.
In French with English subtitles.
STEPPING SOFTLY ON THE EARTH
STEPPING SOFTLY ON THE EARTH
DIR. MARCOS COLÓN, 2022, USA | 71 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL - WHITEHORSE CHAPTER
In the documentary “Pisar Suavemente na Terra”, three Indigenous leaders from the Amazon try to keep their ways of being in the world alive. This is the story of Kátia, Chief of the Akrãtikatêjê people, of Manuel, Chief of the Munduruku people and of José Manuyama, a teacher of Kokama origin. The three narrate the threats to their territories promoted by large-scale mining, monoculture, oil extraction, logging and the construction of hydroelectric plants. Interconnected by the voice and ancestral thoughts of Ailton Krenak, these accounts of resistance present us with other ways of existing and walking in the world.
In Portuguese and Spanish with English subtitles.
DIR. JUB CLERC, 2022, AUSTRALIA | 87 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: WAYNE TUCK AND KAREN WALKER
The Breakfast Club meets the outback in this uplifting and beautiful coming-of-age road movie. Sweet As is the uplifting first feature by Jub Clerc, a Nyul Nyul/Yawuru woman from the Kimberley region of Western Australia. Partially inspired by her own childhood, Clerc’s film is a tender, assured story of an Indigenous girl’s coming of age and a much-needed fresh take on this enduring genre, enhanced by Shantae Barnes-Cowan’s layered and captivating performance as Murra.
Recommended for ages 12+ for mature themes and strong language.
TRAPPER RADIO SERIES
A 5-part film series showcasing 20 + NWT artists in their local regions talking about their art, living through the pandemic, and sharing stories and music about their connections to the North and the land.
The 5th film in this series screens at the ALFF Open Air Fireside screening at Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre: Thursday Feb 16, 8:30pm. Admission is free.
Trapper Radio Series - Dehcho Region
DIR. LAWRENCE NAYALLY, WESLEY HARDISTY, 2022, NT | 16 MIN
Trapper Radio Series - Mackenzie Delta Region
DIR. LEANNE GOOSE, LOUIE GOOSE, WADE
VANELTSI, 2022, NT | 25 MIN
Trapper Radio Series - North Slave Region
DIR. MARTIN REHAK, COURTNEY MCKIEL, PAT BRADEN, 2022, NT | 14 MIN
Trapper Radio Series - South Slave Region
DIR. TYLER HAWKINS, BRANDON KIKOAK, JAIMIE KIKOAK, AARON KIKOAK, CRAIG ALLARD, 2022, NT | 16 MIN
DIR. HAYLEY GRAY AND ELAD TZADOK, 2022, BRITISH COLUMBIA | 84 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: MOLOTOV AND BRICKS TATTOO
For too long, the past has been the exclusive domain of the white colonial power structure.
In this zippy NFB documentary, Hayley Gray and Elad Tzadok survey the inspiring work of a handful of community archives across British Columbia. They talk to curators and archivists from groups traditionally marginalized or excluded communities: Indigenous, Queer, Trans, the Chinese Canadian Museum, the Tahltan Nation, the South Asian Legacy Project, and others. Along the way, we learn the secret, neglected, and untold histories of this place we only think we know.
Directors Hayley Gray and Elad Tzadok in attendance for post-screening Q&A.
DIR. STÉPHANE LAFLEUR, 2022, QUEBEC | 104 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: ASSOCIATION FRANCO-YUKONNAISE
A behavioral research team observes and attempts to replicate the experiences of the first manned mission to Mars.
Packed with beautifully surreal images and mundane bits of interplanetary work routine — like the five astronauts piling onto a bus in full space gear, then shuffling off towards a Quonset hut where the organizer promptly loses his keys — Viking balances humour with profound poignancy, a longing for a sense of purpose. It’s that rare kind of science fiction where gadgets and fantasy are overshadowed by the mysteries of the human psyche, and arguably Lafleur’s finest film to date.
In English and French with English subtitles. Content advisory: themes of depression.
VOICES ACROSS THE WATER
DIR. FRITZ MUELLER, 2022, YUKON | 90 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: NORTHWESTEL COMMUNITY TV
There is a moment during the construction of a canoe when its true form is revealed. A hull drops into place. The elegant arc of a bow cuts forth. A similar process sometimes occurs in life, when a person finally discovers their true path.
Fritz Mueller and Teresa Earle’s feature documentary Voices Across the Water follows two master boat builders as they practise their art and find a way back to balance and healing.
For Alaskan Tlingit carver Wayne Price and young apprentice, Violet, fashioning a dugout canoe from a single massive red cedar tree is a way to reconnect to the Ancestral Knowledge of Indigenous craftspeople. Francophone artist Halin de Repentigny’s handmade birchbark canoes recall the vessels once used by the voyageurs. Connected by their devotion to craft and the critical importance of succession, they carry forward the ancient art of navigating life’s unexpected currents.
Director, Fritz Mueller, producer, Teresa Earle, executive producer, Shirley Vercruysse in attendance for a post-screening Q&A.
DIR. DARREN ARONOFSKY, 2022, USA | 117 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: KOBAYASHI + ZEDDA
Based on a stage play, a reclusive English teacher suffering from severe obesity attempts to reconnect with his estranged teenage daughter for one last chance at redemption. Canadian actor, Brendan Fraser is nominated for the Best Actor award for his performance in this drama at the 2023 Oscars.
Content advisory: strong language, sexuality, mature and complex themes. Recommended for ages 15+.
WHEN TIME GOT LOUDER
DIR. CONNIE COCCHIA, 2021, BRITISH COLUMBIA | 114 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: YUKON PROVISIONS
Connie Cocchia creates a clear depiction of autism’s impacts on an individual and their family. When Time Got Louder offers a deeply moving story about good people simply trying to do their best—and just how hard that can be.
Leaving home for university, Abbie thrives as she experiences independence and self-actualization. However, she’s tormented by the knowledge that her brother Kayden, who has autism and is non-verbal, is reeling in her absence and pushing her parents to their limits. Abbie faces the impossible decision between returning to Karly, the woman she’s fallen for, or providing Kayden the support he seemingly desperately needs.
Content advisory: bullying, coarse language, violence.
WHETŪ MĀRAMA - BRIGHT STAR
DIR. TOBY MILLS AND AILEEN O’SULLIVAN, 2022, NZD | 94 MIN
SCREENING SPONSOR: LUMEL STUDIOS
For Māori, the canoe underpins our culture.
We once built waka/canoes from giant trees and sailed the Pacific by the stars. These arts were lost to us for 600 years.
Whetū Mārama – Bright Star is the story of Sir Hekenukumai Ngaiwi Puhip, and his significance for Māori in rekindling their wayfinding DNA and for all New Zealanders in reclaiming our place as traditional star voyages. It is the story of a culture that understands an inner compass. Hek’s voyaging has reconnected his crews with their inbuilt GPS systems and they in turn are teaching and inspiring the next generation.
THIS IS NOT A CEREMONY (VR EXPERIENCE)
DIR. AHNAHKTSIPIITAA (COLIN VAN LOON) , 2022, BC | 22 MIN
This NFB produced interactive VR experience will be available to experience on a headset on a first comefirst-served basis at the festival information table at YAC. Hours listed below.
Niitsitapi writer and director Ahnahktsipiitaa (Colin Van Loon) takes us beyond the veil of traditional media and transports us directly into another realm, where past, present and future are one; where colonial rules and assumptions are forgotten; and where we can finally get to the truth of the matter.
Presented in stunning cinematic VR, the narrative unfolds all around us, on a dream-like plane of existence. Panoramas flow and merge, stories come to life and dance before our eyes, and community protocols confront our notions of personal responsibility. Here, we are asked to witness some of the darker sides of living life in Canada while Indigenous.
This unforgettable experience will stay with you long after it’s over. THIS IS NOT A CEREMONY calls on all who’ve watched to take action, to share what they have seen and heard, to learn from these tragedies and never forget—so that they will never happen again.
Available to experience in the Yukon Arts Centre lobby. No cost. First come first-served.
Friday Feb 10: 3pm - 6pm
Saturday Feb 11: 3pm - 6pm
Sunday Feb 19: 3pm - 6pm
ALFF CREATOR TALK
VIRTUAL REALITY, GAMES AND APPS AT LOFTY SKY ENTERTAINMENT
SATURDAY FEB 11, 9 - 10:30AM
OLD FIRE HALL, FREE ADMISSION
CEO of Lofty Sky Entertainment and director of Eternal Spring (長春), Jason Loftus, in conversation with XR creator, animator and principal of Outpost 31, Jayden Soroka.
This talk explores the creation of an award-winning animated documentary Eternal Spring (長春), (which opens the festival Thurs Feb 9) and the online companion pieces to share this fine animated film with the world. We’ll dive deep into the blending of 2D illustrations, animation and documentary. Show creator Jason Loftus of Lofty Sky Entertainment will walk through the creative process with clips, anecdotes and answers to audience questions.
A Peabody Award-winning film producer and four-time Canadian Screen Award nominee, Jason Loftus’ work spans documentary, docuseries, virtual reality, narrative games, and animation.
An alumni of the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, Jayden Soroka combines his talent for animation and producing with his passion and proficiency for motion design, visual-fx, and 360/ VR content.
PROUD MAJOR SPONSOR
Four plus days of industry sessions including master classes, panel discussions, decision-maker and funder presentations and the ALFF Pitch Event, the ALFF Industry Series kicks off on February 7 and runs until February 12.
For the full schedule please view: alff.ca
7PM-8PM: Old Fire Hall, Whitehorse. Independent Production Fund with Jon Taylor.
February 8 - all day on Zoom
9PM-5:30PM: Industry Presentations by decision-makers, festivals and public funders, including: CBC Drama, CBC Comedy, Indigenous Screen Office, Bell Fund, Telefilm Canada, National Film Board of Canada, Canada Media Fund, Knowledge Network, Northwestel Community TV, Documentary Organization of Canada, Hot Docs International FF, and Level Film
9AM-11AM: Zoom, DOC IGNITE Market Intelligence workshop
12PM-1PM: Old Fire Hall, Creator Talk - The Art of Polaris with Leslie Leong
1:30PM-3:30 PM: Zoom, DOC IGNITE From Treatment to Screen workshop
9AM-10AM: Old Fire Hall Keynote Address - Joy Loewen, National Screen Institute
10:30AM-12PM: Panel DiscussionLifting Up Indigenous Screen Projects/ Producers
1PM-2:30PM: Zoom, 1 to 1 Meetings
2:30-4:00 PM: IN-person 1 to 1 Meetings
9AM-10:30 AM: Old Fire Hall, VR, Games and App Case Study: Lofty Sky Entertainment’s Jason Loftus in conversation with Jayden Soroka (Outpost 31)
1PM-2:15 PM: Old Fire Hall, Yukon Film and Media Production Status and Future
3PM-4:30 PM: Old Fire Hall, Submitting to Film Festivalsfilmmakers and festival programmers
1PM: Old Fire Hall, ALFF Pitch Event. Public event. Everyone is welcome to attend to witness 6 filmmaking teams pitch their short film project to a jury of film professionals for the chance to win the ALFF Pitch Prize: $7,500 in cash and $5,000 in in-kind support from Northwestel Community TV and Yukon Film Society.
PASSES AND REGISTRATION
Thanks to our wonderful sponsors Canada Media Fund and Warner Bros. Discovery Access Canada for providing Industry access to under-represented creatives.
ALFF Industry Online Pass: $40 ALFF Industry: $75 alff.ca/passes
*FREE for Indigenous, Black, Persons of Colour and LGBTQ2+ Creatives in the Yukon, NWT & BC please email: alff@ yukonfilmsociety.com
ALFF 2023 Presenting Partner: Canada Goose. ALFF Industry is presented in partnership with the support of Canada Media Fund, Documentary Organization of Canada, Warner Bros. Discovery Access Canada, Hot Docs International Film Festival, Telefilm Canada, and Northwestel Community Television.
ALFF SHORT WORKS 1: HERE AND THE GREAT ELSEWHERE
DIR. DOUG, JR. SMARCH, 2009, CA | 3 MIN
This animated video captures the feeling of nighttime solitude on a murky rural road. High beams pierce the night to cast shadows that distend and hide all beyond.
DIR. SHELBY ATWOOD STRANGLING WOLF & STEVIE-RAY ATWOOD STRANGLING WOLF, 2022, CA | 10 MIN
A lone, hollow protagonist finds themselves ridden with an uncanny mold that cannot be cleaned or expunged.
Vistas: Dancers of the Grass
DIR. MELANIE JACKSON, 2009, CA | 2 MIN
Stop-motion embodies unity in the majesty of a First Nations hoop dance.
DIR. ROBIN MCKENNA, 2020, CA | 6 MIN
The tale of a palliative doula who finds her calling through her late sister.
DIR. SIMON PLOUFFE, 2022, CA | 16 MIN
Innu voices speak to swamped forests while drums punctuate the gravity of flooded woodlands. Dams emerge as aurality intensifies and recalls legends of the land.
Here and the Great Elsewhere
DIR. MICHÈLE LEMIEUX, 2012, CA | 14 MIN
Lemieux abstracts elements of matter through a short series of pinscreen tableaux.
Alambic: By Winds and Tides
DIR. DOUG, JR. SMARCH, 2022, CA | 3 MIN
This short film weaves words and visuals to illustrate how creation takes shape and is unleashed.
ALFF SHORT WORKS 2: TRIANGLE OF DARKNESS
DIR. ROSANA MATECKI, 2021, CA | 15 MIN
Spanish visual essay about a lone narrator whose nostalgia encompasses a melancholy perspective. Amidst an impassive city, memory and dance prove to be a refuge.
DIR. ROSIE BONNIE AMMAAQ, 2015, NU | 15 MIN
A hushed elegy for a way of life forgotten by conquest albeit deeply remembered by those who lived it. A family who lives as Inuit generations before them and renounces the frigid formality imposed by colonial institutions.
DIR. MIRYAM CHARLES, 2022, QC | 17 MIN
Charlotte faces inner demons during a field trip to the woods. She ventures to find herself alone in an effort to escape shared mealtimes and overcome her own hunger.
Triangle of Darkness
DIR. MARIE-NOËLLE MOREAU ROBIDAS, 2022, CA | 15 MIN
Cold is custom for those who reside in a region known as the “triangle of darkness” amidst an ice storm that saw an unprecedentedly prolonged power outage. Reproductive labour and kinship always manage to warm those cold.
Walking is Medicine
DIR. ALANIS OBOMSAWIN, 2017, CA | 5 MIN
Six Cree men, the Nishiyuu walkers, trudge 1600 kilometers from Whapmagoostui to Ottawa like their ancestors. They trek upon frozen lakes and rivers to span long distances.
DIR. CO HOEDEMAN, 2011, CA | 8 MIN
During World War II, a mother and daughter care for two Jewish ladies when Nazis occupied Holland. The women unravel a quilt to make 55 pairs of socks to trade for necessities.
Alambic: Solid Ground
DIR. BEATRIZ CARVALHO, 2022, CA | 2 MIN
A sonic travelog that follows an expatriate on their journey home. Monotype animation characterizes a sentiment of simultaneity wherein one feels both at home and abroad upon return.
SHORT WORKS 3:
THREE THINGS WE WON’T TALK ABOUT FREE SCREENING
DIR. CHALA HUNTER, 2022, CA | 11 MIN
Familia(l)(r)ity depicts a fine line between indelicacy and endearment.
DIR. SALOMÉ VILLENEUVE, 2022, CA | 12 MIN
Nature inclines three siblings to critically consider mortality on a hot summer day.
Three Things We Won’t Talk About
DIR. JESSIE CRAIG ROCHE, 2022, CA | 9 MIN
A comical morbid glimpse into the filth and fortitude that underscores intimacy through unspoken nuisances.
Scaring Women at Night
DIR. KARIMAH ZAKIA ISSA, 2022, CA | 10 MIN
Fear is instinct as Ella finds herself the sole traveler down an empty street with a man who follows too close behind.
DIR. CONOR MCNALLY, 2020, CA | 5 MIN
As Riley adjusts to a new place and schedule, we see how confinement alters our perceptions of time.
DIR. GURJEET KAUR BASSI, 2022, CA | 11 MIN
A couple of Punjabi labourers shift gears against their wrongdoers.
Lay Me by the Shore
DIR. DAVID FINDLAY, 2022, CA | 19 MIN
Sunny days are overshadowed by a specter of those who were loved and lost. Life is precarious with no guarantees. The only thing Noah can count on is unvarying anguish in bereavement.
Content advisory: strong language and mature themes in this program.
ALFF SHORT WORKS 4: HIDDEN HISTORIES
ALFF SHORT WORKS 5: MUNICIPAL RELAXATION MODE
DIR. TWOYOUNGMEN JARRET, 2022, AB | 13 MIN
A tipi wonders about its purpose in modern life, and shows that as a home, it is the heart of its community.
Kokum with Love
DIR. KIM STADFELD, 2022, MB | 11 MIN
Flora Bear’s youngest granddaughter searches for truth and answers about her Indigenous grandmother’s life. Filmmakers in attendance.
DIR. RYAN HACHÉ AND RITCHIE HEMPHILL, 2022, BC | 16 MIN
’Nakwaxda’xw Elder Colleen Hemphill tells the story of her life as a youth growing up in a float house.
DIR. TIM ANAVIAPIK SOUCIE AND VINCENT
L’HÉRAULT, 2022, NU | 27 MIN
This film brings human faces to the much reported issue of problems with drinking water for Indigenous communities. In this, a young father in Pond Inlet, near the north end of Baffin Island, sets out to take matters into his own community’s hands. A fascinating overview of a multi-faceted co-operative project that involves educating fellow Inuit, gathering historical evidence from elders, and a large degree of training and co-operation with academic institutions in the south. Inspiring and a great look into life in Pond Inlet, Nunavut.
DIR. ASHLEIGH VALLANCOURT, 2022, CA | 4 MIN
At night, a woman’s mind wanders as she chops firewood.
DIR. UNA LORENZEN, 2022, CA | 8 MIN
A hand-drawn animation of parallel universes in which strangers, unaware of each other’s presence, share the use of a long table as their worlds gradually merge.
Wherever You Are, Wherever I Am
DIR. KAY CHAN, 2022, BC | 2 MIN
This film follows a pair of Two-Spirit Métis-Chinese youth softening a deer hide together. An experimental film about belonging and honouring your full self and ancestry, no matter where you are.
DIR. BARRY DOUPÉ, 2022, CA | 3 MIN
Red House is an animation that playfully explores metamorphosis in relation to the stability and structure of housing. Created using the AMIGA computer console and Deluxe Paint IV software, hand drawn sequences delight in the constant reconfiguration of images, characters and forms.
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Municipal Relaxation Module
DIR. MATTHEW RANKIN, QC | 6 MIN
Ken has a perfect spot for a city bench, and is calling the city to share his idea.
Alambic: By Winds and Tides
DIR. BOGDAN ANIFRANI-FEDACH, CA | 2 MIN
Exploring the conscious, the unconscious and the self, By Winds and Tides takes a deep experimental dive into the birth of an idea—how it takes shape, how it is released. An allegorical quest, the film combines images and words into a singular sigh.
DIR. DAVID CURTIS, 2022, YT | 5 MIN
During a two-week stay in a nearly vacant hotel, filmmaker Curtis developed an intimate relationship with his room and the hotel’s architecture and décor.
Living with Ataxia
DIR. ANNIE MAHEUX,2022, QC | 10 MIN
Based on an original idea by Magdalena Guzman and coordinated by Annie Maheux, Vivre avec Ataxie (Living with Ataxia) deals with the fundamental intersections between desire and disability, through video and Virtual Reality research.
I Thought the World of You
DIR. KURT WALKER, 2022, BC | 17 MIN
The speculative tale of Canadian outsider musician Lewis, his 1983 album L’Amour, and its belated discovery. A love story composed in myth and song.
ALFF SHORT WORKS 6: YUKON LIGHT
FILMMAKERS IN ATTENDANCE
DIR. EMILY SHEFF, MARIE HAMMJE, 2022, YT | 4 MIN
Whitehorse jury award-winner of the Yukon48 Filmmaking Challenge. Content advisory for disturbing scenes.
Don’t Bring Lulu
DIR. LULU KEATING, 2022, YT | 4 MIN
The invitation to the party comes with a stipulation: don’t bring Lulu. However, Lulu has ideas of her own.
DIR. IANTHA GREER, 2022, YT | 8 MIN
In this gentle animation, Ali’s twin sister Dea passes away, her spirit returns from the northern lights in the form of a snow bear to console Ali and her family and play an important role in the family’s survival.
Please Cheese Please Me
DIR. ZACH MCCANN, CHELSEA JEFFREY, 2022, YT | 3 MIN
Audience award-winner of the Yukon48 Filmmaking Challenge!
DIR. J/KLYNK, 2022, YT | 4 MIN
Dawson jury award-winner of Yukon48 Filmmaking Challenge.
DIR. DOUGLAS JOE, 2022, YT | 4 MIN
Haa Kusteeyí meets the katana.
DIR. AUBYN O’GRADY, 2022, YT | 3 MIN
It’s probably the dongle.
DIR. CUD EASTBOUND, 2022, YT | 4 MIN
Don’t go down there!
DIR. FLORIAN BOSC, 2022, YT | 5 MIN
Two hikers walk on a trail in the mountains. After many kilometers, one of them injures their ankle and needs emergency help.
Parental guidance advised.
The Fire Dancer
DIR. LANCELOT BURTON, AGNIESZKA PAJOR, 2022, YT | 3 MIN
Audrey Gallibois transforms into a fearless fire deity, delicately balancing the dangerous art of flowing fire just a hair’s breadth away from what most people would consider safe.
DIR. THOMAS BULLEN, 2021, YT | 25 MIN
Senior Year is a visual album, consisting of music by the Yukon band, Soda Pony. The six songs of the album, which embody the iconic musical style of garage rock duo Aiden Tentrees and Patrick Hamilton, guide a visual narrative which explores the many trials and tribulations of young adulthood against the backdrop of Yukon life. Youthful naiveté, awkward first dates, lessons gained and love lost, are all on the menu in this coming-of-age tale; with a generous side of fries. Whitehorse actors Daniel Little and Julie Laliberté star as the (almost) high school sweethearts in a narrative that roams wildly between hopeful, awkward, intense, and utterly unrequited. Senior Year was produced by Yukon filmmakers Thomas and Gabriel Bullen on a shoestring budget and serves as a love letter to the real and imagined world of Whitehorse teenage-dom in the days before everyone had a smartphone in their pocket.
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