The NFB Heads to TIFF 2014

Me and My Moulton, (14 minutes), September 10, 11 and 12 @ Scotiabank Theatre, Short Cuts Canada Programme 6

It’s that time of year again when film stars descend upon the city for The Toronto International Film Festival (September 4-14, 2014). This year, the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) will be showing seven films at TIFF: two features, three shorts, and two restored 3D classics.

The most recent documentary from Canada’s First Nations filmmaker, Alanis Obomsawin, is Trick or Treaty?  The first aboriginal filmmaker to be selected in TIFF’s Masters programme, her film examines the current-day discussion around a controversial 1905 land rights agreement, set against the backdrop of the recent Idle No More movement. Veteran documentarian Paul Cowan teams up with Palestinian animator Amer Shomali to co-direct the Intuitive Pictures/NFB co-production The Wanted 18. Screening in the TIFF Docs Programme, this animated-live action hybrid doc is about a group of residents in Palestinian who smuggled 18 cows to their homeland in 1987.

The Short Cuts Canada Programme features three new titles. Oscar winner Torill Kove (The Danish Poet) is back with the autobiographical short Me and My Moulton, about a seven-year-old girl’s desire to fit in. Co-directed by Quebec husband-and-wife team Denis Poulin and Martine Époque, CODA is a technologically enhanced dance film set to Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring.” The film draws on advanced digital technologies to offer a new vision of dance in cinema utilizing motion capture (MoCap) and particle processing. Toronto’s Randall Okita makes his first foray into full-on animation filmmaking with The Weatherman and the Shadowboxer, a visually haunting short film about two brothers who share the scars, though not the memories, of an untold history that has driven them to existential extremes.

And to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of groundbreaking animator Norman McLaren (founder of the NFB’s animation studio in 1941), two landmark films from the NFB vault have been restored. Early experiments in stereoscopic filmmaking, Around Is Around (1951) and O Canada (1952), will screen in eye-popping 3D.

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