In all the hubbub of the Toronto International Film Festival, sometimes it's easy to forget where you are. Amidst the wall of people crowding the streets, the buzz of foreign languages, and Hollywood celebrities emerging from black SUV's you might be at any major world film festival.
Abner Meecham (Hal Holbrook) has seen better days. At the age of 80, having lost his wife and unable to care for himself, his son has placed him in the care of old-age home. Suffering within the system and determined to spend his final days elsewhere, he packs his bags and leaves destined for his old home, a family farm just outside the city limits.
Imagine knowing that unless a miracle happens, you will be dead within two years. In 2007, that was the situation facing then 23-year-old Eva Markvoort. Born with Cystic Fibrosis, a disease that affects the lungs, causing them to fill with mucous and making it harder for those inflicted to breathe, Eva was in rough shape. Due to the condition itself, patients are isolated from others.
For most people, the 24th annual Vancouver International Film Festival started on Thursday, September 29th, with the opening day of screenings at the festival's 10 screens. In terms of the official launch of the parties that come with the festival, that occurred later that night at the Aquarium.
Looking back at my introduction article to last year's Vancouver International Film Festival, I found it hard to believe that a year had passed since the 2003 edition. It had been an interesting year at the movies and one that I was hoping to out-do with the 2004 edition.
By the 6 day marker of the film festival last year, things were getting way too crazy for me to handle. I wasn't sleeping at all, I was stressed out beyond belief, and I had gotten sick and felt as though the end was near.
Short films are different than feature length movies in many ways. Throughout the year, the only real venue to see them is at various film festivals throughout the world or on specialty cable channels like Bravo or Showcase, who devote air time in between feature films and other television series to their airing.
As the film festival entered its second week and I entered about day five or six of minimal sleeping, I'd seen far too many movies, and the location at which I live began to seem a distant memory, I took a step back.
Okay, if you were to ask me last week how many movies I planned to see at this year's Vancouver International Film Festival, lovingly referred to as VIFF by film geeks young and old, then I would have told you I had a tentative schedule of nearly 50 ready and lined up.
Ho! Ho! Ho! Merry Christmas! All right, I know what you're thinking. Have the movie studios finally lost it entirely and released Holiday movies in September? After all, it's only a matter of time before the holiday season extends back into the back-to-school shopping season.