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Three Free Days!
Thursday, 12 May 2011
The three-day German Language Film Festival starts today! Each films starts promptly at 7pm at 395 Wellngton! Click here for more information...
Mad About the Arts Screening
Monday, 09 May 2011
This Wednesday night, in honour of Mental Health Week, we are working with Mad About the Arts to present We Can Do That (Si poù fare). A charming and hilarious film from Italy, it premiered in Ottawa during last year's European Union Film Festival. The program starts at 7:00pm, and reception and art exhibit will follow the film. Tickets are available at the door at $12 for the general public and $8 for seniors, student and members.

Not enough of a film fix? Later on at 9:15pm, join us for Part II of our Donigan Cumming retrospective. We will also be selling DVD box sets of Donigan's work, as well as Scott Birdwise's book "Splitting the Choir: The Moving Images of Donigan Cumming".

Both screenings take place at the Library and Archives Canada, 395 Wellington in Ottawa.

See you there!
Tales from the Gimli Hospital: Reframed
Tuesday, 26 April 2011


Thanks to everyone who came out to this incredible event! Here's a quick pic of Guy and Tom:

Photo: Trevor Lush

Twenty-three years after the Canadian Film Institute hosted the Ottawa premiere of TALES FROM THE GIMLI HOSPITAL, a low-budget feature from Winnipeg by a young filmmaker named Guy Maddin, it's back in Ottawa for a very special "Prairie Scene" presentation featuring musical accompaniment and live narration by renowned German actor, Udo Kier. The evening will also feature a special post-screening onstage interview with Guy Maddin, moderated by CFI Executive Director, Tom McSorley.


Be sure to catch this screening of a Canadian film classic in the NAC Theatre on Saturday, April 30th:

Don’t miss the world premiere presentation of Tales from the Gimli Hospital: Reframed, a one-of-a-kind artistic collaboration that brings together a group of extraordinary artists to revisit and re-imagine Guy Maddin’s breakthrough film.

For one night only – in the NAC Theatre on Saturday, April 30, 2011 at 20:30 – Ottawa audiences will have an opportunity to experience the unique blending of exceptionally gifted, artistically intrepid talent that will result in the not-to-be-missed live multimedia event of the year. Tales from the Gimli Hospital: Reframed will feature a newly commissioned musical score by Winnipeg composer Matthew Patton, performed live on stage by Icelandic musicians associated with Icelandic superbands Sigur Ros, amiina and múm. The film event will also include live Foley performed by Seattle’s Aono Jikken Ensemble, and live narration by cult film superstar Udo Kier (Blood for Dracula, Flesh for Frankenstein, Dogville, The Kingdom). This mutually enriching creative ensemble will regenerate an internationally beloved and critically acclaimed cult film classic, and shed new light on the work of one of the world’s most compelling filmmakers. Director Guy Maddin will participate in a question and answer session immediately following the event.

Tickets for Tales from the Gimli Hospital: Reframed are $25 and can be purchased at www.prairiescene.ca, in person at the NAC Box Office, or through Ticketmaster at 1.888.991.2787.

Guy Maddin’s filmic output to date – nine feature-length projects and innumerable shorts – is a remarkable canon of fantasia. Tales from the Gimli Hospital, which was his first feature, appeared in 1988 and became a midnight-movie classic. His second, Archangel, won the U.S. National Film Critics Award for best experimental film. Since then he has won many other awards – including the Telluride Silver Medal for life achievement in 1995 and the San Francisco International Film Festival’s prestigious Persistence of Vision award in 2006 – and created dozens of beguiling films in his unique personal style inspired by the aesthetics and melodramatic flourishes of silent cinema, Central European literature and the desolation of his native Winnipeg. Among his internationally celebrated feature works are The Saddest Music in the World (in 2003 with Isabella Rossellini and Mark McKinney); Brand upon the Brain! (in 2006 with guest narrators Crispin Glover, Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson, among others); and My Winnipeg (in 2007). Maddin is also a writer and teacher, and occupies the position of Distinguished Filmmaker in Residence at the University of Manitoba.

Released theatrically in 1988 to acclaim from critics and the public alike, Tales from the Gimli Hospital is now regarded as one of the true cult hits of the 1980s—a bizarre entry on the midnight movie circuit that found an eager audience and set its director’s career in motion.

Set during a smallpox epidemic in the village of Gimli, Manitoba near the turn of the century, Tales from the Gimli Hospital is a dreamlike, elliptical film which explores the bizarre, interconnected relationship of two men who share a hospital room "in a Gimli we no longer know." Einar (Kyle McCulloch) and Gunnar (Michael Gottli) are friends at first, until they reveal their darkest secrets to each other. Tales of creeping pestilence, unconsummated passions, reckless envy and necrophilia are told, climaxing in a deadly battle between the two patients, now rivals. Does a better world await these two lost souls on Earth...or in Heaven?

Much of the original Tales from the Gimli Hospital is silent, except for the intentional scratches and pops of the film’s wonderfully archaic soundtrack. Excluding a couple of startling tinted hallucination scenes near the end, it is filmed in deep black and white.

LAFF Film Update
Thursday, 24 March 2011
Due to the technical difficulties at the Library and Archives Canada over the past few days, our official remaining dates of the Latin American Film Festival — including rescheduled films — are as follows:

Friday, March 25th @ 7:00pm (19h): Hildalgo: The Untold Story (Mexico)
Friday, March 25th @ 9:15pm (21h15): Chance (Panama)
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