06. March 2017 · Comments Off on Ottawa Indie Fest visits the Kingston Canadian Film Festival 2017 · Categories: Film and Stuff · Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

BlairBack from a great weekend at the Kingston Canadian Film Festival.  Outstanding effort by  all the organizers and volunteers in putting together a well curated and delivered program.

Lots of films to choose from but I wanted to share some personal highlights:

Stella Meghie’s debut feature “Jean of the Joneses” – outstanding script, funny, poignant and real.  Beautifully shot and honestly one of the most satisfying stories I  have seen in a feature film for quite a while.

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10. May 2016 · Comments Off on Five Questions with Steven Hunt about his Web Series “Past Redemption” · Categories: Canadian Filmmakers, Five Questions with..., Ottawa, Web Series · Tags: , , , , , , ,
Steven Hunt 5QW Photo

Photo of Steven Hunt by Susan Murdock

“I have never really thought of doing a narrative film until my son Dylan asked me to help him on one of his high school projects. He wrote a script about a fictional town called Redemption where nothing was sacred except blood, money and religion. What eventually emerged was a complete and complex world of a fictional town,” replies filmmaker Steven Hunt. Ottawa Indie Fest spoke to Hunt at his home about his web series Past Redemption.

Steven Hunt, a seasoned director and producer, has worked in Latin America and Africa on numerous broadcast and communications projects. His documentaries on various social issues have appeared on Canadian, European and New Zealand television.

Past Redemption is a 9-part character-driven web series about survival in a small impoverished town, where you can be law abiding and live in poverty, or be involved in petty crime where prospects improve dramatically. It is also the historical birthplace of a major crime family – the Wesley’s.

The web series will have a special premiere screening at the Mayfair Theatre on May 19th at 7pm. It will also appear on line, as nine separate episodes released every second Thursday starting June 2, 2016.

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16. March 2016 · Comments Off on Questions of Art & Identity — Jesus of Montreal, Life Classes · Categories: Feature Films, Visible Cinema · Tags: , , , ,

Questions of Art & Identity — Jesus of Montreal, Life Classes
mattby Matt Joyce

One’s identity and the complexity of this identity is where the artist finds the source for artistic expression. What has come to shape our individual identity will become clear in our art form. The relationship between individual identity and artistic expression is strong and similar for the one offers stability and clarity to the other. Many artists channel their expression from the familiarity and intensity of their individual identity. The strength of this relationship between individual identity and artistic expression can be illustrated in Denys Arcand’s film, Jesus De Montreal (1989), and William D. MacGillivray’s film, Life Classes (1987). When looking at these two films and the relationship between art and identity and how one spawns the other, we see the drive of the artist (the filmmaker) and how his identity is both inside and outside the film that he has created. Through the director on the outside and the characters and events within the film and the similarities between them we see how the artist’s identity creates the type of art he/she as an individual wants to express. The artistic expression of the characters acts as one with the style of the director and the difference between fiction and reality starts to unwind. “Those characters aren’t insects I’m looking at. Not at all. They’re my friends, they’re me.” (McSorley, 12) More »

13. March 2016 · Comments Off on #52FilmsByWomen #CdnTwist 9 – Les Êtres Chers (director: Anne Émond) · Categories: #52filmsbywomen, Canadian Filmmakers, Feature Films · Tags: , , ,

This year, I joined thousands of other film fans who have taken on the challenge to watch 52 films directed by women in 2016.  It’s part of a campaign using the hashtag #52filmsbywomen.  I’m throwing in an additional twist and making them all Canadian films.

My selection for film 8 is the film Les Êtres Chers (2015) by director Anne Émond.

Les Êtres Chers which translates to “The Loved Ones” follows a Quebecois family over 3 decades after the death of it’s patriarch and shows how the impact of love and loss transmits from one generation to the next.  Directed by Montreal-based Anne Émond, the film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2015 and screened at the Lucarno International Film Festival in Switzerland.

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06. March 2016 · Comments Off on #52FilmsByWomen #CdnTwist 8 – Stay (director: Wiebke von Carolsfeld) · Categories: #52filmsbywomen, Canadian Filmmakers, Feature Films · Tags: , , ,

This year, I joined thousands of other film fans who have taken on the challenge to watch 52 films directed by women in 2016.  It’s part of a campaign using the hashtag #52filmsbywomen.  I’m throwing in an additional twist and making them all Canadian films.

My selection for film 8 is the film Stay (2013) by director Wiebke von Carolsfeld.

Aiden Quinn and Taylor Shilling play lovers who reach a crossroads in their lives and in the lives of people connected to them when they finds out she’s pregnant in the feature film Stay by director Wiebke von Carolsfeld.  The film is shot on location in Montreal and Ireland.

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24. February 2016 · Comments Off on #52FilmsByWomen #CdnTwist 7 – Girls’ Night Out (director: Phyllis Ellis) · Categories: #52filmsbywomen, Documentaries, Television

This year, I joined thousands of other film fans who have taken on the challenge to watch 52 films directed by women in 2016.  It’s part of a campaign using the hashtag #52filmsbywomen.  I’m throwing in an additional twist and making them all Canadian films.

My selection for film 7 is the film Girls’ Night Out (2016) by director Phyllis Ellis.

Girls’ Night Out is billed as a feature-length POV documentary, an all access journey into the lives of young women and binge drinking.  The film features the first person narratives from women who talk about the epidemic proportions binge drinking has risen to in recent years.   More »