A Bear Named Winnie

Director John Harrison
Year 2004
Run Time 90min
Genre Comedy, Family
Based on the true story behind author A.A. Milne's beloved character, Winnie the Pooh, this is a tale of the remarkable friendship between a Canadian soldier and the cub that stood as a symbol of friendship and hope in a world plagued by war.

It was during the early days of World War I that veterinarian Lieutenant Harry Colebourn (Michael Fassbinder) purchased a small bear cub and named her Winnie after his hometown of Winnipeg. As the specter of war looms heavy in the conscience of the citizens and children of London, Winnie becomes the star attraction at the zoo. When a man named A.A. Milne brings his young son to visit the zoo, the story of the bear and her friendship with a far away soldier inspires him to create one of the most beloved characters in the history of children's literature.

Director

John Harrison

Writers

Simon Vaughn, John Goldsmith, John Harrison

Cast

Michael Fassbender, Gil Bellows, David Suchet, Stephen Fry, Jonathon Young

Producers

Simon Vaughn, Kim Todd

Genres

Comedy, Family

Interest

History

Original Language

English

Language Version

FR Subtitles

  • Own Voice

Mighty Jerome

Director Charles Officer
Year 2010
Run Time 84min
Genre Documentary
In 1959, at just 19 years of age, African-Canadian Harry Jerome was Canada’s most promising track and field star, on his way to the Olympics. By 1962, after a terrible leg injury, everyone feared his career was over. But Jerome was determined not to quit, starting what his coach called “the greatest comeback in track and field history.” A truly inspiring Canadian hero, Jerome kept running through years of personal, racial and political challenges, with a strength of character as impressive as his athletic ability. A deeply insightful documentary that tells the runner’s story from his early days through his sudden, tragic death, Mighty Jerome will electrify all those who appreciate stories of courage and passion.

Director

Charles Officer

Actor, writer and filmmaker Officer’s first feature, Nurse.Fighter.Boy, was nominated for 10 Genies, winning one. Officer also directed the docs Mighty Jerome, The Skin We're In, Unarmed Verses, and Invisible Essence: The Little Prince, as well as the feature Akilla's Escape, which won five CSAs. He has recently directed episodes of Coroner, and executive produced and co-directed The Porter. He’s also the executive producer of the upcoming docs The Art of Dance and Emmanuel.

Writer

Charles Officer

Cast

Nykeem Provo

Producers

Tracey Friesen, Selwyn Jacob

Genre

Documentary

Interests

Biography, BIPOC Stories, Discrimination, History, Social Justice & Politics, Sports

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Subtitles

Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould

Director François Girard
Year 1993
Run Time 93min
Genre Drama
Mirroring the structure of Bach’s Goldberg Variations, the recording that made eccentric Canadian pianist Glenn Gould famous, this dramatic narrative is broken up into 32 short pieces. Each short film provides an insight into an aspect of Gould’s life and career. Some are filmed as dramatic re-creations, while others are more abstract: There is even an animated piece accompanied by a recording of a Gould performance.

Colm Feore is brilliant as Gould, humanizing the difficult genius whose studio recordings, imaginative radio documentaries and insightful writings are still influential in contemporary classical circles.

“Instead of a laborious bio-pic, we get a sly, quick-witted meditation on a character always likely to elude our grasp.” — Anthony Lane, The New Yorker

Director

François Girard

Girard won a Grammy for Secret World Live, a Peter Gabriel concert film. Thirty-Two Short Films About Glenn Gould won four Genie Awards, including Best Picture. The Red Violin won eight Genies and an Oscar for Best Original Score.  His recent films include Boychoir, starring Dustin Hoffman, and Hochelaga terre des âmes which was nominated for eight CSAs, winning four. His latest, The Song of Names, premiered at TIFF 2019.

Writers

François Girard, Don McKellar

Cast

Colm Feore, Gerry Quigley, Gale Garnett, Don McKellar

Producer

Niv Fichman

Genre

Drama

Interests

Arts and Culture, Biography, Classics, History

Original Language

English

Language Version

EN CC

Louis Cyr: l’homme le plus fort du monde (Louis Cyr)

Director Daniel Roby
Year 2013
Run Time 123min
Genre Drama
In the late 19th century, after years of delighting crowds with astounding feats of strength, Louis Cyr was considered the strongest man in the world. Based on his true story, this charming biopic recounts the many successes, heartbreaks and obstacles — both inside and out of the athletic arena — that Louis (Bertrand) faced on his climb from obscurity to international fame. Louis’ best friend recounts the story to the strongman’s estranged daughter — from Louis’ poverty-stricken childhood through the ups and downs of his circus career — and shares with us the fascinating life of this Quebec hero.

The top-grossing film of the year in Quebec, Louis Cyr won two Canadian Screen Awards and nine Jutra Awards, including Best Film.

Director

Daniel Roby

Roby’s feature film debut, La peau blanche, premiered at TIFF and went on to win the Canadian Screen Award for Best First Feature. He followed that with Funkytown, Louis Cyr (which swept the awards season) and Dans la brume. His most recent films are A Breath Away and Most Wanted.

Writer

Sylvain Guy

Cast

Antoine Bertrand, Guillaume Cyr, Rose-Maïté Erkoreka

Producers

Caroline Héroux, Christian Larouche

Genre

Drama

Interests

Biography, History, Sports

Original Language

French

Language Versions

EN Subtitles, FR CC

Maurice Richard (The Rocket)

Director Charles Binamé
Year 2005
Run Time 124min
Genre Drama
The Rocket traces the meteoric rise of hockey legend Maurice Richard (Dupuis), from his humble beginnings as a Montreal machinist during the Depression to star of the Canadiens and the greatest scorer in hockey.

But this is much more than a sports movie. Director Binamé frames the story in a cultural context: It isn’t until Richard, a man of few words, begins to speak his mind about the inequalities and prejudice directed toward French Canadians that he finds his voice.

Many feel that the riots caused by Richard’s suspension in 1955 were the spark that fuelled the Quiet Revolution in Quebec. This hockey blockbuster is chock-full of heart and history.

The Rocket was nominated for 13 Genie Awards and won nine.

Director

Charles Binamé

Binamé’s Eldorado screened at the prestigious Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes in 1995. He also directs for hit TV shows such as Reign, Flashpoint, Rookie Blue and Republic of Doyle. His latest film, Elephant Song, won a Canadian Screen Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Writer

Ken Scott

Cast

Roy Dupuis, Julie Le Breton, Stephen McHattie, Patrice Robitaille

Producers

Daniel Louis, Denise Robert

Genre

Drama

Interests

Biography, Discrimination, History, Social Justice & Politics, Sports

Original Languages

English, French

Language Versions

EN Subtitles, FR CC

Maudie

Director Aisling Walsh
Year 2016
Run Time 115min
Genre Drama, Romance
Maudie is based on the true story of Nova Scotia painter Maud Lewis, who overcame the physical challenge of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis to become one of Canada's best known and most loved folk artists.

The fragile but determined Maudie (Sally Hawkins) yearns for independence from her over-protective family and dreams of creating art. When she answers an ad for a housekeeper placed by a reclusive fish seller (Ethan Hawke), she gains more than just the freedom she wanted, as the unlikely pair develops a relationship that is intensely intimate and just as challenging.

A touching and inspiring story about following one's dreams in spite of life's obstacles, Maudie is an absolute charmer.

"Maudie breaks your heart with its infectious positivity." - Tomris Laffly, Time Out

Director

Aisling Walsh

Walsh’s previous projects include feature films The Daisy Chain and Song for a Raggy Boy, as well as directing over a dozen TV movies and shows, including Room at the Top, which won a BAFTA for Best Miniseries, and the TV movies A Poet in New York and An Inspector Calls. She most recently made the TV movie Elizabeth Is Missing. Next she will be directing Ethel’s Orchestra and producing The Ballroom.

Writer

Sherry White

Cast

Sally Hawkins, Ethan Hawke

Producers

Mary Young Leckie, Sally Hawkins, Ethan Hawke

Genres

Drama, Romance

Interests

Arts and Culture, Biography, ESL, Family Relationships, Female Filmmaker, History, Strong Female Leads

Original Language

English

Language Versions

EN CC, FR Dub, FR Subtitles

Long Time Running

Directors Nicholas de Pencier, Jennifer Baichwal
Year 2017
Run Time 97min
Genre Documentary

Long Time Running chronicles the emotional and epic 2016 tour that The Tragically Hip embarked on after iconic frontman Gord Downie announced that he had been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. Intimate moments, behind-the-scenes and on-stage footage, personal interviews with the band and close friends reveal the heart-breaking final performances of that now-legendary final tour.

No other band encapsulated the rugged soul of Canada quite like the Hip, and it was completely in character for Downie – the everyman poet laureate of Canada – to go out on his own terms, with a powerfully galvanizing tour that delivered some of the most exhilarating performances of band’s history.

Long Time Running, named after a languid blues song from the band's second album, is both a history lesson and a eulogy for a group with 16 Juno Awards to its credit.” – Brad Wheeler, The Globe and Mail
 
 

Directors

Nicholas de Pencier

Baichwal and de Pencier are known for their CSA-winning docs, Manufactured Landscapes, Watermark and Anthropocene. They are frequent collaborators, with Baichwal directing and de Pencier as her cinematographer and producer. Their credits include The Holier it Gets, Act of God and Payback, and their newest film together, Into the Weeds.

Jennifer Baichwal

Baichwal and de Pencier are known for their CSA-winning docs, Manufactured Landscapes, Watermark and Anthropocene. They are frequent collaborators, with Baichwal directing and de Pencier as her cinematographer and producer. Their credits include The Holier it Gets, Act of God and Payback, and their newest film together, Into the Weeds.

Writer

Jennifer Baichwal

Cast

Gord Downie, Rob Baker, Paul Langlois, Davis Manning, Johnny Fay

Genre

Documentary

Interests

Arts and Culture, Biography, Female Filmmaker

Original Language

English

  • Own Voice

Buffy Sainte-Marie: Carry it On

Director Madison Thomas (Ojibwe/Saulteax)
Year 2022
Run Time 90min
Genre Documentary
The story of musical icon Buffy Sainte Marie is told through interviews with her peers, those she inspired and, of course, Buffy herself. For over five decades, Buffy has demonstrated a commitment to her principles that not only sets her apart from her peers, but has also allowed her to have an impact felt around the world. This musical journey looks over her career, celebrating the brilliance of her composition, writing and fearless activism.

A must-see for both lifelong and new fans of her work, this exceptional documentary premiered at TIFF in 2022 and was nominated for the DGC Allan King award for Best Documentary Film. 
 

Director

Madison Thomas (Ojibwe/Saulteax)

Writer

Andrea Warner

Cast

Buffy Sainte-Marie (Cree)

Producer

Stephen Paniccia

Genre

Documentary

Interests

Arts and Culture, Biography, BIPOC Stories, Female Filmmaker, History, Indigenous Filmmaker, Strong Female Leads

Original Language

English

La Bolduc

Director François Bouvier
Year 2018
Run Time 103min
Genre Drama
Known to the world as ‘La Bolduc,’ singer-songwriter Mary Rose-Anne Bolduc, along with Félix Leclerc, can be credited with the revitalization of the Quebec folk genre in the 20th century. This biopic tells the story of Bolduc, whose lively on-stage personality and culturally-influenced musical style made her a hit with working-class audiences in the 1930s. 

La Bolduc was one of the highest-grossing Canadian films of 2018 and was a nominee for the Prix Iris for Best Film. 

Director

François Bouvier

Film and TV director Bouvier was nominated for the Best Director Genie in 1990 for his film Les matins infidèles. Since then, he has directed numerous television shows and films, including Histoires d'hiver and Maman Last Call, starring Patrick Huard. He recently directed the TV series Ruptures and the film La Bolduc. Currently he is completing work on the film La Cordonnière.

Writers

Frédéric Ouellet, Benjamin Alix

Cast

Debbie Lynch-White, Émile Proulx-Cloutier, Mylène Mackay

Producers

Valérie d'Auteuil, André Rouleau

Genre

Drama

Interests

Arts and Culture, Biography, Strong Female Leads

Original Language

French

The Grey Fox

Director Philip Borsos
Year 1982
Run Time 92min
Genre Action/Adventure, Drama

After going in and out of prison for over 30 years after a career of stagecoach robbing, Bill Miner is released in 1901 to a completely new reality. Lost about what to do next, Miner finds his inspiration for his next great adventure from the film The Great Train Robbery. His plan to commit the first ever train robbery leads to a thrilling heist and an intriguing tale full of twists and turns. 

Based on the true story of William Miner (nicknamed the Gentleman Bandit), The Grey Fox won 4 Genie Awards including Best Picture and has been included on TIFF’s top 10 list of the Best Canadian Films of All Time.

Director

Philip Borsos

Borsos was a four-time Canadian Film Award, Genie Award winner, and an Oscar nominee. He released his debut feature, The Grey Fox, to much acclaim in 1982, at age 27. He also directed The Mean Season, One Magic Christmas, Bethune: The Making of a Hero and Far From Home: The Adventures of Yellow Dog, before his tragic death from leukemia at age 41.

Writer

Jonathon M.B. Hunter

Cast

Richard Farnsworth, Jackie Burroughs, Ken Pogue

Producers

David Brady, Peter O'Brian

Genres

Action/Adventure, Drama

Interests

Biography, Classics, History

Original Language

English