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Day Four: Festival Good in the Early Going


As of this morning, an additional three reviews have been added to VanRamblings’ thrived and became an institution over the years, including reviews for 20 Fingers, Fallen Angel: Gram Parsons and Dead Man’s Shoes.


Well, here we are ... four days into the 23rd annual Vancouver International Film Festival, and a great four days it has been, with provocative films like Baober in Love, Machuca, Moolaadé and Primer already screened — with the exception of Moolaadé each of these films screen one more time — and much much more to look forward to over the course of the coming 12 days.

Last evening our intention was to attend a late evening screening of The Motorcycle Diaries, but even though we’d arrived at 8:30 p.m., and were near the front of the pass lineup, we were told by theatre manager Bill Nowrie that none of the passholders in the lineup were going to get in.

As is so often the case (friends and I have done this numerous times), recognizing that The Motorcycle Diaries was likely to sell out, passholders plunked themselves down in The Vogue Theatre for the 7 p.m. screening of Head in the Clouds (not exactly one of the buzz films at this year’s Fest), and advised management that they’d be staying on for the second Vogue screening (The Motorcycle Diaries, in this case).

The number of passholders in the first screening remaining in the theatre for the second show exceeded the passholders alotment for the second show ... so, no one in the passholders lineup waiting outside for The Motorcycle Diaries were gonna by given entré. As a consequence, Volkmar, J.B. and I (and quite a few others) opted for an alternative screening. A bit of Film Festival serendipity, if you will.


So, off we trundled to the Granville 7 to get early passes for Primer, and as the screening was not due to start til 9:40 p.m., we walked over to the falafel shop nearby, I had a bowl of carrot soup, and before long we were situated comfortably in Theatre 2 at the Granville 7 (the THX theatre, so that was a piece of good news).

Primer turned out to be a salutary experience, indeed, an endlessly inventive, at times incomprehensible but ultimately rewarding experience, a $7000 tyro experiment for director / co-star Shane Carruth that looks as if it cost one hundred times as much, as involving and technically brilliant a cinematic experience as a film festival-goer could wish for.


Following on the heels of a busy and satisfying Saturday, today (the film festival gods willing) will be given over to screenings of Or (My Treasure), a 4-star hit at the recent Toronto Film Festival and due to screen soon at the 42nd annual New York Film Festival; Hari Om (good buzz in the first 2 days of the festival); the Israeli film Campfire and, as the final show of the day, The Machinist. As work beckons Monday, only two films are on the agenda, a 7 p.m. screening of The World and a 9:30 showing of Dead Man’s Shoes at The Vogue.

Posted by Raymond Tomlin at September 26, 2004 10:00 AM in VIFF 2004


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