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VIFF2012: What To Do Now That the Film Festival is Over

Mubi, your online cinema, anytime, anywhere

The most frequent despairing question patrons attending the 31st annual Vancouver International Film Festival queried VanRamblings about over the 16 day course of the Festival was this: once the Festival is over, where do we find the kinds of films we are gifted with seeing during our beloved VIFF?

The answer to that question is multifaceted.

Mubi: Co-founded by Ebert Presents at the Movies, and Mubi, film critic and essayist, the impossibly young, Russian-born Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, who also founded Chicago's online guide to independent and underground cinema,, Mubi bills itself as "your online cinema, anytime, anywhere," while suggesting at the same time that it is the première online cinema website, and community, for people who love film. Intrigued?

For only 99¢ to $2.99 per film, or $6.99 for a monthly subscription which allows unlimited film viewing, subscribers may gain access to award winning festival gems, classics and cinephile favourites. What's on tap at Mubi? Surf here and scroll down to see some of the hundreds of titles that you may stream onto your computer (and then to your big screen HDTV), films like Luis Buñuel's 1929 classic, Un chien andalou, 2010 festival award-winner, Apichatpong Weerasethakul's altogether wonderful, Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, or Caroline Link's Nowhere in Africa, which is VanRamblings favourite film of the first decade of the new millennium. All for free, or 99¢ or $2.99, or as we say above, $6.99 for a full month of viewing unlimited movie classics, foreign films, and festival award winners.

You didn't know about Mubi? Now you do. Your welcome.

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Videomatica: Locally, of course, there's Graham Peat's foreign film and classic film emporium which, although rentals are no longer available, does a bang up online sales business, as well as great in-store video sales at their new location — at the back of Zulu Records, 1972 West 4th Avenue, in Vancouver. Surprisingly, many of the films that can be purchased may be had for as little as $15. You'll find a nifty "previously viewed" section in the store, as well, where videos may be purchased very much on the cheap. Correction: In an e-mail from Videomatica proprieter Graham Peat, the estimable Mr. Peat corrects that Videomatica is a "bricks and mortar" store only, that online sales are not available. Our apologies for the mistake.

Pacific Cinémathèque, in Vancouver

Cinémathèque: Chances are that you took in a VIFF screening, or three, at Vancouver's beloved film lovers art house cinema, Pacific Cinémathèque, which throughout the year screens classics, the best of the best in foreign cinema, retrospectives of the work of cinema's most celebrated auteurs, in house theme-based film festivals, student films, country-based film retrospectives, and so so much more. Here's this month's PC calendar.

Annual film festivals, other than VIFF: Where do we start? There's the august DOXA Documentary Film Festival that takes place each spring, set in 2013 to run from May 3rd to 12th; DOXA screens films throughout the year, as well. There's also Vancouver's Latin American Film Festival that takes place approximately a month before VIFF begins, each year.

This past week, The Straight's Craig Takeuchi wrote an online piece on the autumn film festivals, ranging from the 17th annual Amnesty International Film Festival (November 2 to 4) to the Jewish Film Festival (November 7 to 15), as well as five other 'local' film festivals. And that's just this autumn. Cinephiles don't have to go long between Vancouver's many film festivals.

Vancity Theatre, Vancouver

The Vancity Theatre: Tom Charity is the programmer for VIFF's Vancity Theatre, ensuring that diehard local cinephiles never have to wait too long between screenings of great films at the super comfy film centre screening room. Once the VIFF Repeats have completed their run this Thursday, you can look forward to screening such films as the absolutely tremendous and moving Rebelle (War Witch), Canada's Best Foreign Language Oscar nominee, and Tabu, both of which begin a one week run this Friday, October 19th. If you didn't catch Rebelle, or the equally tremendous Tabu, during their brief VIFF run, here's your opportunity to catch two of the year's very best films. If you're not on Vancity Theatre's mailing list, make sure to add your name to the list the next time you visit the theatre.

Festival Cinemas / Cineplex Odeon International Village Cinemas: Leonard Schein's Festival Cinemas has long been recognized as Vancouver's première art house (we're not sure that Leonard would like that construction of his cinema, and would probably wish that we would say fine cinema — and, let's face it, he does book some very fine cinema). In recent years, Cineplex Odeon's International Village Cinemas have given Leonard a run for his money. Between the two cinema complexes, most weeks a cinephile's appetite for great film can be more than sated. Just take a look at the current lineup at the two cinemas: at The Village, Brandon Cronenberg's Antiviral; one of the best reviewed films of the year, Arbitrage; End of Watch; and the film critics are going ga-ga over, Stephen Chbosky's The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Over at Festival Cinemas' Fifth Avenue Cinemas location, Leonard's also booked The Perks of Being a Wallflower and Arbitrage, and adds Rian's Johnson incredibly well-reviewed new film Looper, and Paul Thomas Anderson's equally well-reviewed lock for Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Director Oscar nods, The Master.

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In tomorrow's VanRamblings' post we'll take a look at a few of the Oscar contenders currently playing around town — tremendous films all — and follow up that post, over the next couple or three days, with trailers for, and some insight into, the Oscar contender / film cinema that will open sometime before year's end, or early in the new year, worthy of your time.

The bottom line: We live in a film lovers paradise in Vancouver. Although we miss 200 great films, each year, which fail to arrive on our shores (cuz they don't have a Canadian distributor in place, so unless you're willing to travel to Seattle, you're out of luck), thanks to Tom Charity at The Vancity Theatre, Leonard Schein over at Festival Cinemas, Artistic Director Jim Sinclair at Cinémathèque, and all the fine folks who bring us tremendous cinema through the many focused Vancouver film festivals that dot our artistic cinema calendar throughout the year, those of us who live in La-La land will never want for great cinema (youse just gots to have the money).

Posted by Raymond Tomlin at October 17, 2012 12:31 AM in VIFF 2012


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