Sally Hawkins as Maud Photo by Duncan Deyoung, Courtesy of Mongrel Media.

Indie Film bliss

First screening of the season a bittersweet tale of a Canadian artist

By Alexandra Heck

Free Press Staff

When the film ended there was silence inside the Vogue Theatre—a mixture of awe, shock and sorrow.

The Indie Films Fernie fall season kicked off with a tear jerker on Sunday night, showing a one-time screening of the film, Maudie.

Based on the real-life story of Canadian folk artist Maude Lewis, the film follows a young woman suffering from intense rheumatoid arthritis and her journey of becoming a successful painter.

Maudie struggles with simple tasks, she walks with a limp and struggles to hold objects, but her determination makes up for what her shaking hands lack.

She has one true passion—painting.

After her brother sells their family home and leaves her in the care of her sinister, overprotective aunt, Maudie seeks a job as a housemaid for a local fish peddler.

Everett Lewis is an angry, authoritarian man who doesn’t have the patience for Maudie’s physical barriers, but as time passes between the two in his tiny, ramshackle Nova Scotia house, they develop a quirky love.

“We’re like two mismatched socks,” Maudie whispers to Everett, dancing in circles, standing on his toes inside their bedroom on their wedding night.

Maudie’s paintings start to gain traction in town and even nationally. She’s shocked when the President of the United States writes a letter commissioning a work.

The film explores the roller-coaster nature of Maude and Everett’s marriage, haunted by a past that Maude holds onto dearly.

“To me it was quite bittersweet,” said Chris Stockey, organizer of the Indie Film lineup at the Vogue Theatre. “She made her own way despite everyone telling her she couldn’t do anything.”

Stockey says that the movie, which has been featured at the Toronto International Film Festival, was a way of connecting Fernie viewers to a lesser-known piece of Canadian culture and history.

“We felt that it would resonate with our audience,” she said.

Each season Indie Films Fernie chooses one Canadian film, a documentary, an international film and a general crowd-pleaser.

“It’s hard for people to be exposed to some of the smaller films,” said Stockey. “I think it’s just nice to bring films to the communities where you just don’t get the variety.”

The next screening is on October 1 with a documentary on climate change called An Inconvenient Sequel; which is an update on the state of climate change a decade after the release of An Inconvenient Truth.

Indie Films will also be screening Their Finest on November 5, a British comedy about a female film producer in wartime Europe.

The final show will be on December 3 with a Swedish film, A Man Called Ove.

Stockey says that northern European films usually dabble with a dry sense of humour.

“Quite often they tackle serious subjects but with a little darker humour,” she said.

For more information about the fall lineup, and to purchase tickets visit

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sparwood’s Causeway Bay Hotel reports COVID-positive guest

The hotel manager said guests who ate at the Gateway Restaurant at the same time do not need to be tested

Mugshots Cafe is revived via new ownership

The cafe was purchased from its previous owner on August 1

City of Fernie issues water upgrade updates

City changes include construction, water restrictions, and a water quality advisory

Business Beat

Kaitlyn Poirier joins ET Hair Salon

Elkford Chamber launches a Youth Chamber Program

The program encourages youth to start their own businesses while developing community connections

B.C. records new COVID-19 death, 85 more cases; Horgan calls on celebrity help

This brings the total number of active confirmed cases to 531 across the province

Horvat scores 2 as Vancouver Canucks beat Blues 5-2 in NHL playoff opener

Game 2 in best-of-seven series goes Friday night

Teachers to get 2 extra days to prepare for students’ return, now set for Sept. 10

Students will first start with orientation and learn rules of COVID-19 classroom policies

High-volume littering at Cape Scott draws ire from hiking groups

Popular Vancouver Island hiking spot not closing, but frustration about crowding grows

SFU to drop ‘Clan’ varsity team name

The ‘Clan’ name is shortened from ‘Clansmen,’ and was introduced roughly 55 years ago

New Tory leader must build a strong team in Commons and for the campaign: Scheer

Scheer marked his final day in the House of Commons today as leader of the Opposition

B.C. to hire 500 more COVID-19 contact tracers ahead of fall

Contract tracers add an ‘extra layer’ in the fight against the novel coronavirus

Feds commit $305M in additional funds for Indigenous communities during COVID-19

Money can be used to battle food insecurity and support children and mental health

We were a bit tone deaf: Hobo Cannabis renamed Dutch Love after backlash

Hobo Cannabis has various locations in Vancouver, Kelowna and Ottawa

Most Read