The Reel Canadian Film Festival took place at the Vogue Theatre on January 24-26. Paige Mueller/The Free Press

Canadian films showcased at weekend festival

The Reel Canadian Film Festival took place at the Vogue Theatre January 24-26

Movie lovers gathered together this weekend to watch and discuss the best of the best in Canadian filmmaking.

The Reel Canadian Film Festival took place at the Vogue Theatre over this past weekend. The event kicked off with an opening reception hosted at the Grand Central Hotel, followed by both a short film, Tipped and a longer feature film, James vs. His Future Self.

Jonas Chernick, writer, producer and lead actor of James vs. His Future Self was in attendance and held a Q&A session to speak about his sci-fi time travel film after the showing.

The fun continued on Saturday with a whole slate of films starting in the early afternoon with the Little Reels Showcase, featuring short films made by children under the age of 15.

On Saturday evening, the event returned to adult programming with a short film named Vessel and a feature length entitled, The Song of Names. Centering around the disappearance of a promising young violinist, The Song of Names deals with themes of brotherhood, love, and loss. With actors Clive Owen and Tim Roth leading the film, it was certainly well-received at various international film festivals.

The final film of Saturday night was The Marijuana Conspiracy, a film set in the 1970s and followed the story of a group of young women who were part of a 98 day experiment studying the effects of marijuana on women. The film followed the lives of the women throughout the long isolation experiment and explored the effects it had on both their health and their psyche. Director Craig Pryce stuck around after the showing to answer questions from the crowd.

The film festival wrapped up on Sunday with four more films and a closing reception at the Vogue Theatre Arcade. The very last film of the event was Ils pleuvait les oiseaux which translated is And the Birds Rained Down. This French film, which is based off the novel by Jocelyn Saucier, follows the story of three elderly recluses who live in the woods. The strikingly beautiful cinematography lends itself well to the story that speaks to the agelessness of love and beauty.

The Reel Canadian Film Festival was both a great way to celebrate Canadian filmmaking in Fernie and a testament to the truly unique stories that Canadians have to tell. The festival showcased the unbelievable talent of creatives in Canada and was a great way for movie lovers to gather together in love and support of good films.

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