The Invermere Film Festival will feature seven movies over three days, February 7-9, 2020, at the
Columbia Valley Centre Theatre
A Festival Pass for all the films is $25.
Tickets for individual films are $10.
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THE 2020 FESTIVAL FILMS
FRIDAY MATINEE - 3PM - February 7, 2020
LINDA RONSTADT: THE SOUND OF MY VOICE
1 hr 35 min
In The Sound of My Voice, Ronstadt is our guide through growing up in Tucson singing Mexican canciones with her family; her folk days with the Stone Poneys, living in Santa Monica, taking part in the burgeoning scene at The Troubadour and her reign as the “queen of country rock” in the ‘70s and early ’80s. She was a pioneer and champion for women in the male-dominated music industry; a passionate advocate for human rights, and had a high-profile romance with California Governor Jerry Brown.
She stood up to the Musical Machine to record American Standards, to celebrate the songs that had ended up in the elevator and once again to claim her Mexican heritage and record Canciones De Mi Padre, although her record company thought it would ruin her career. It was a huge success both for the artist and in sales and charts. Ultimately, her singing voice was stilled by illness and forced her into early retirement but her music and influence remain timeless.
With moving performance footage and appearances by friends and collaborators including Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, Bonnie Raitt and Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice celebrates an artist whose desire to share the music she loved, made generations of fans fall in love with her — and the sound of her voice
OPENING NIGHT FILM - 6:00 PM - Friday February 7, 2020
THE WOMAN WHO LOVES GIRAFFES
1 hr 23 min
Featuring a Live Skype Q&A from Kenya, with Anne Dagg & director Alison Reid.
In 1956, four years before Jane Goodall ventured into the world of chimpanzees and seven years before Dian Fossey left to work with mountain gorillas – in fact, before anyone, man or woman had made such a trip – 23-year-old Canadian biologist, Anne Innis Dagg, made an unprecedented solo journey to South Africa to become the first person in the world to study animal behaviour in the wild on that continent. When she returned home a year later armed with ground-breaking research, the insurmountable barriers she faced as a female scientist proved much harder to overcome.
In 1972, having published 20 research papers as an assistant professor of zoology at University of Guelph, the Dean of the university, denied her tenure. She couldn’t apply to the University of Waterloo because the Dean there told Anne that he would never give tenure to a married woman. This was the catalyst that transformed Anne into a feminist activist.
For three decades, Anne Innis Dagg was absent from the giraffe world until 2010 when she was sought out by giraffologists and not just brought back to into the fold, but finally celebrated for her work.
In The Woman Who Loves Giraffes, an older (now 85), wiser Anne takes us on her first expedition back to Africa to retrace where her trail-blazing journey began more than half a century ago.
By retracing her original steps, and with letters and stunning, original 16mm film footage, Anne offers an intimate window into her life as a young woman, juxtaposed with a first hand look at the devastating reality that giraffes are facing today.
Both the world’s first ‘giraffologist’, whose research findings ultimately became the foundation for many scientists following in her footsteps, and the species she loves have each experienced triumphs as well as nasty battle scars.
The Woman Who Loves Giraffes gives us a moving perspective on both.
SATURDAY MATINEE - 3PM - February 8, 2020
GORDON LIGHTFOOT - IF YOU COULD READ MY MIND
1 hr 31 min
Gordon Lightfoot: If You Could Read My Mind is an exploration of the career, music and influence of legendary Canadian musical icon, Gordon Lightfoot. With unprecedented access to the artist, the film takes audiences from high school auditoriums in straight-laced, small town Ontario in the 50s to the coffee houses of Yorkville and Greenwich Village in the 60s, through Lightfoot's turbulent, substance-fueled arena shows of the 70s, and finally to the artist in present day.
The documentary features interviews from many notable voices in the music industry including Lightfoot peers Ian and Sylvia Tyson, Randy Bachman, and Steve Earle; famous fans Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee from Rush, Alec Baldwin, Anne Murray and Sarah McLachlan; as well as behind the scenes stories from members of his longtime band.
Following Lightfoot's evolution from Christian choirboy to troubled troubadour to international star and beloved Canadian icon, Gordon Lightfoot: If You Could Read My Mind is an intimate and emotional examination of the artist's profound relationship to his music and his Canadian roots.
SATURDAY NIGHT MOVIE - 6:00PM - February 8, 2020
Featuring Q&A with Special Guest RUSS SHEPPARD!
THE GRIZZLIES is an inspiring and powerful true story based on a group of Inuit students in the small Arctic town of Kugluktuk. Suffering from widespread drug use, alcohol abuse, domestic violence and one of the highest teen suicide rates in the world, this northern community is periled by the legacy of colonialism.
The students are naturally skeptical when Russ Sheppard, yet another ignorant and unprepared white rookie teacher, arrives from the South on a one-year teaching contract. With much to learn, but deeply shaken by the death of one of his students, Russ introduces his class to the sport of lacrosse in an effort to help lift the dangerous fog of trauma existing in his students.
The Grizzlies earns its impact through a carefully established sense of place, thoughtfully fleshed-out characters and a refusal to back away from the cold truths at its core. Yes, it’s about a teacher whose lacrosse team gave struggling kids a sense of pride and identity, but that teacher was an overwhelmed, under-equipped kid himself – and desperate to break his charges out of a cycle of despair and give them a reason to live. It’s a movie that tells its story with authenticity and heart, and that makes all the difference. It scores.
1 hr 42 min
Miranda de Pencier
SATURDAY LATE SHOW - 10:00PM - February 8, 2020
ONCE WERE BROTHERS - Robbie Robertson &
1 hr 40 min
Rick Danko, Levon Helm, Richard Manuel, Garth Hudson, Robbie Robertson
ONCE WERE BROTHERS: Robbie Robertson and The Band is a confessional, cautionary, and occasionally humorous tale of Robbie Robertson’s young life and the creation of one of the most enduring groups in the history of popular music, The Band. The film is a moving story of Robertson’s personal journey, overcoming adversity and finding camaraderie alongside the four other men who would become his brothers in music and who together made their mark on music history. Once Were Brothers blends rare archival footage, photography iconic songs and interviews with many of Robertson’s friends and collaborators including Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, Van Morrison Martin Scorsese, Peter Gabriel, Taj Mahal, Dominique Robertson, Ronnie Hawkins, and more.
In a career spanning six decades, Robbie Robertson has continued to create as a songwriter, producer, performer, actor, author and film composer. A half-Mohawk, half-Jewish kid from Toronto, Robertson would travel from the dives of Yonge Street to the deep South as an ambitious 16-year-old on a musical mission. His raw talent would thrust him into the spotlight and put him at the centre of a cultural revolution, backing Bob Dylan on his notorious 1966 “electric” world tour and later, as a member of The Band, collaborating with Dylan on the ground-breaking Basement Tapes and inventing Americana with songs like “The Weight,” “Up on Cripple Creek” and “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down.” After 17 years, The Band called it quits with a lavish farewell concert on November 25th, 1976, at San Francisco’ Winterland Ballroom, immortalized in the seminal concert film, The Last Waltz, directed by Martin Scorsese – considered by many as the greatest rock and roll film of all time.
SUNDAY MATINEE 3:00 PM - February 9th
1 hr 40 min
Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi
2019 Academy Awards: Best Documentary Feature Film
From award-winning documentary filmmaker E. Chai Vasarhelyi and world-renowned photographer and mountaineer Jimmy Chin.
Here’s a film that brought to my mind Mary Poppins’s famous order: “Close your mouth please Michael, we are not a codfish.” I spent most of this film with my jaw on the floor. It’s a visually staggering documentary from National Geographic about the climber Alex Honnold, who specialises in the most mind-boggling and gasp-inducing “free solo” climbs – without a rope, up sheer rock faces, the sort of thing usually undertaken by Tom Cruise or Spider-Man.
This film is about Honnold’s freakily dangerous free solo attempt in 2017 at El Capitan, the 3,000ft-high rock formation in Yosemite Valley, California. We see his difficult relationship with his girlfriend Sanni McCandless. Like all those close to Honnold, she is in the purest form of agony as Honnold makes his almost supernaturally difficult climb. Why is he doing this crazy thing? The nearest Honnold comes to a because-it-is-there moment is comparing his physical and mental intensity to that of a samurai.
The documentary also takes in the views of the camerapeople who are recording his climb – climbers themselves, going up ahead of him or behind him (with ropes) or sometimes deploying drones. Has this camera crew thought, really thought, about what they would think and feel if the worst happened? Because there are plenty of examples of free soloists who have died. Do the camera operators realise they would be intimate witnesses to a catastrophe? Have they thought how they would film it – do they let Alex drop out of the frame or, if positioned above, watch him plummet? And then what do they do with the film? There is a heartstopping footage of someone appearing to fall, and it isn’t entirely clear who that is.
Alex Honnold himself is an enigma: equable, even-tempered, but withdrawn, although McCandless clearly wants him to be more emotionally open with her. As for Honnold, he clearly isn’t finished with free solo climbs. Does a samurai’s destiny await him?
CLOSING NIGHT FILM - 6:30 PM Sunday Feb. 9th
JAMES VS HIS FUTURE SELF
1 hr 34 min
Featuring Q&A with Special Guest Jonas Chernick - Lead Actor and Writer
James (Jonas Chernick) is an uptight time-travelling obsessed young scientist, with a lifelong secret crush on his best friend Courtney, and a younger sister, Meredith, who is stuck looking after him since their parents died. James’s tunnel vision determination to become the world’s first time traveller has taken over every aspect of his life, and the only two people who care about him at all – Courtney and Meredith – are almost ready to give up on him. When James is visited by Jimmy, his nihilistic future self, he’s told that he needs to give up his dream of becoming the world’s first time traveller, or else suffer the unimaginably lonely consequences. But when he won’t go along with the plan, it becomes a wicked battle of man versus himself – literally.
Starring Daniel Stern (City Slickers, Home Alone), Jonas Chernick (My Awkward Sexual Adventure) & Cleopatra Coleman (The Last Man On Earth, Step Up 4). Directed by Jeremy LaLonde (The Go-Getters) produced by Jonathan Bronfman (The Witch, Patti Cake$, Race), Jordan Walker (The Go-Getters) and Jonas Chernick.