The ReFrame Film Festival returns to Peterborough (January 23-26), offering movie goers a variety of important documentaries at various venues within the downtown core. The selected films range from popular picks that have received theatrical runs to special independent fare that may never be screened again on the silver screen.
There are a number of films that have piqued my interest, including screenings for two of 2019’s most acclaimed documentaries, Maiden and Honeyland. Maiden tells the inspiring story of Tracy Edwards and her trail-blazing all-women crew who competed in 1989’s Whitbread Round the World Race (now known as the Volvo Ocean Race), and Honeyland offers an unfiltered look at how human needs can often disrupt nature. Local film-maker Rob Viscardis also returns with Town of Widows, a new project he’s co-directed with Natasha Luckhardt about General Electric employees seeking justice. As a fan of Viscardis’ work (Before We Arrive: The Story of The Weber Brothers), Town of Widows is the movie I’m anticipating the most at this year’s ReFrame. On the topic of ripple effects and justice, I recommend checking out nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up, This passionate and extremely effective film chronicles the sheer perseverance of Indigenous cultures looking for answers in the wake of the tragic death of Cree teen Colten Boushie. Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am is also worth a watch. It’s an efficient and educational film about Morrison’s legacy as a prolific voice in black literature. The film that’s bound to be a “must-see” event, though, is the award-winning doc For Sama. While I’m not exactly a fan of how invasive and graphic the film-making is, this unflinching doc is an eye-opener and teaches audiences about how to stay hopeful in hopeless circumstances.
For more information on films and admission, visit www.reframefilmfestival.ca.