VIFF: Heaven and Earth
Wrapping up the first week at the fest, one of the big themes was energy – how we use it, where it’s coming from, what the impacts are, and directions for our future consumption. We had a full house at our Saturday night premiere of The Mirror Never Lies, Kamila Andini’s remarkable film about life in the Wakatobi Sea, co-produced by our colleagues at WWF-Indonesia (Screens again on Wednesday). And for those of us who ate our way through Thanksgiving weekend with buttered popcorn, there were some great films to be seen. An audience favourite that plays again this Friday, Sushi: The Global Catch weaves together the traditional story of sushi with a behind-the-scenes look at the increasing commercial pressure on our wild fish stocks.
Sometimes you need to take a break from the big conservation challenges presented in the series for a little escapist pleasure. As a transplanted Easterner, one of my favourites was West Wind: The Vision of Tom Thomson, a filmic palette of light and colour shot predominantly in Ontario’s beloved Algonquin Park in autumn. And to prove just how much West Coasters appreciate nature and film, tonight’s premiere of the five-hour documentary Heaven and Earth is now at rush tickets. Three years in the making – this 1979 classic depicts the quiet rhythms of life in a mountain village in the Austrian state of Styria. Extra butter on the popcorn, please!