Heads up: Hot Docs 2022 Starts Today!

Hot Docs 2022

Good news, everyone! Hot Docs, the preeminent documentary film festival in Canada, started today and runs through Sunday, May 8th. Better yet, we will be covering it for the first time this year!

There are a ton of excellent selections this year, and you can see the whole lineup on the Hot Docs Festival website. You can follow our coverage here on the site with the HotDocs22 tag!

2022 Hot Docs

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Heads up: Canadian Film Festival Is On Now!

2022 Canadian Film Fest CFF Festival_Header

Good news everyone! The Canadian Film Festival starts today and runs through April 2nd. This year the entire festival is presented by Super Channel, and available to stream with a subscription to Super Channel Fuse. Yes, this means another subscription, but it also means you can access the lineup across the country, and from the comfort of your home.

There are ten feature films and 28 short films in this year’s program and features a fascinating cross-section of Canadian filmmaking. This year we’ll have reviews and interviews

You can check out the entire lineup at the Film Festival’s website, and follow along with our coverage using the CFF2022 tag here on the site.

2022 Canadian Film Fest Coverage Banner

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Pandora International Film Critics Awards Nominations Announced!

Pandora International Film Critics

Last year I was privileged to join the Pandora International Film Critics group, and I am excited to be participating in the 2020 PIFC Awards, honouring excellence in film for the year 2021! The list of nominees is diverse and exciting, and I can’t wait to see how things shake out.

Here is the complete list of nominees, let by Dune and Spencer with 11 nominations each, followed closely by The Power of the Dog with nine, and Mass and The Green Knight with seven each.

Continue reading “Pandora International Film Critics Awards Nominations Announced!”

Heads up Canada: the 2021 Whistler Film Festival is coming!

2021 Whistler Film Festival Festival_Header

Good news, everyone: the 2021 Whistler Film Festival is about to start! One of the last festivals on the Canadian circuit returns for its 21st year with a five day run (December 1st through 5th, 2021) in cinemas starting in Whistler BC and a month-long run online (December 1st through 31st). The films online are available Canada-wide, and the festival has a ton of Canadian films for you to enjoy.

You can follow along with my coverage using the WFF-2021 tag right here on AwesomeFriday.ca.

You can see –and purchase tickets for– the full lineup of 30+ feature films and 35 shorts on the festival website.

2021 Whistler Film Festival Coverage Banner

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Heads Up: Raindance Film Festival is on now!

2021 Raindance Festival_Header

Good news UK friends! Raindance Film Festival is on now! This year we will be doing some limited coverage of the festival so look for some reviews on the site using the Raindance 2021 tag!

The full list of features playing at the festival is available on the Raindance website. This festival is geo-locked to the UK so whenever possible we will include Canadian distribution information.


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Heads Up: The 2021 Blood in the Snow Festival starts today!

2021 BitS Festival_Header

Good news, everyone! The 2021 Blood in the Snow Festival is happening once again. This Canadian festival of horror and genre films is taking place in two ways this year.

First up, from today (October 29th) to Sunday (October 31st), you can watch films on SuperChannel in Canada. Then, from November 18th to 23rd, there will be screenings in person at Toronto’s Royal Theatre.

You can follow along with all of our coverage using the BitS 2021 tag here on the site. In addition, we’ve already seen a few of the films at past festivals, so reviews are already there for you to read!

For full details on the line-up or to purchase tickets to the in-person screenings, check out the Blood in the Snow Website.

2021 Blood in the Snow

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Heads Up: The 2021 Festival du Nouveau Cinema is on now!

2021 Festival du Nouveau Cinema Festival_Header

Good news, everyone! Montreal’s Festival du nouveau Cinema is celebrating its 50th year this year! The in-person festival is over, but the online version runs through the end of October, and I will be covering it –albeit in a limited fashion.

Film are available to watch on the festival website, and you can follow my coverage here on the site using the FNC 2021 tag or click the banner below wherever you see it.

Festival du Nouveau Cinema

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Heads Up: The 2021 Vancouver International Film Festival starts this week!

VIFF 2021 Festival_Header

Good news everyone! This week the Vancouver International Film Festival returns for its 40th year, and we will be covering it! This will be Matt’s sixth and Simon’s second time covering the festival, and we are excited to be back. This year’s festival is a hybrid, with both in-person screenings and once again also to viewers across British Columbia via VIFF Connect!

The festival runs from October 1st to 11th, and you can find coverage on the site starting tomorrow, September 30th. Follow along with the VIFF 2021 tag!


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Heads Up: Fantastic Fest 2021 starts today!

Fantastic Fest 2021 Festival_Header

Good news, everyone! Fantastic Fest 2021 today, September 23rd 2021 and runs through September 30th. Even better, I will be covering the festival (remotely) for the first time –albeit in a limited fashion.

The online portion of the festival will be geo-locked to viewers in the united states, so wherever I can, I will provide Canadian release information.

You can follow the coverage of the festival here on the site using the Fantastic Fest 2021 tag.

2021 Fantastic Fest Coverage Banner

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Heads Up: Fantasia Festival 2021 is coming next week!

Fantasia Festival 2021

Good news, everyone! Montreal’s Fantasia Festival is back for its 25th year. This year will be a hybrid of in-person and online screenings, which means we’ll be covering the festival from our headquarters in Vancouver.

The festival runs from August 5th to 25th and features a ton of genre films from around the world. The online portion of the festival will be available to audiences across Canada, which means you can enjoy it from home, too.

You can check out the entire catalogue online now at the 2021 Festival Website. Watch for coverage here on Awesome Friday starting on the 5th.


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I made a list of film festivals

Film Festivals

He friends, I made a thing. I made a list of upcoming film festivals for my own reference, and I figured that others might find it useful, too. I know there are ways to find this info, but I like having it all in one big list, and I figure I can’t be the only one. 

This list is by no means exhaustive; it’s just the festivals that are presently on my radar. If you were wondering: yes, there are way too many for anyone to attend them all. If you know of a festival that I don’t have here, please feel free to shoot me an email or @ me on Twitter.

The list is presented in chronological order. Expected dates are present whenever they’re not available, and those dates are my guesses. I will do my best to keep this up to date on a monthly-ish basis. 

You can find the list here. I hope you find it useful.

-Matthew

Heads Up: North Bend Film Festival is this week!

North Bend Film Festival

I’ll be covering the virtual edition of the 2021 North Bend Film Festival this coming weekend (July 15th to 18th)!

This year’s festival is hybrid, with both virtual and in-person screenings. I’ll be covering the virtual edition this year. Unfortunately, being in Washington State, the festival itself is geo-locked America, so Canadian friends, we won’t be able to screen the films directly, but I will be providing Canadian release information wherever I can with reviews.

You can follow festival coverage using the NBFF 2021 tag here on the site and on social media. So follow along; it’s going to be fun!


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Canada’s Future of Film Showcase starts this Friday, and here are the films!

2021 Future of Film Showcase

The Future of Film Showcase is a festival of short films featuring Canadian filmmakers under the age of forty. Designed to highlight the, well, future of Canadian film by giving a platform to up and coming artists, it is an exciting chance to take a peek at what is around the corner in Canadian art.

This year the showcase features 11 films, and –for the second year in a row– they will be available virtually via CBC Gem from July 9th to 22nd, for free, to anyone in Canada who wants to watch them. There is a wide variety of styles and intents here, and having had the opportunity to watch them, below follows a list of the films and a brief review of each.

Continue reading “Canada’s Future of Film Showcase starts this Friday, and here are the films!”

Assassin’s Creed Loses Its Charm When The City Is No Longer The Star

A tale of true cities.

It took two hours to see the opening title of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, and just one more before I knew I was done with it. And that moment of realisation came at the most unlikely of moments – just as I stepped out of my longboat onto the shores of England, not far from where I spent the first eighteen years of my life . It’s not a common thing to have your actual home town in a video game when you’re from the Hampshire green belt, and I’d anticipated a more glowing reaction.

However, as I opened the map and saw the sprawl of space ahead of me, with the towns and icons dotted around the sparse rolling hills, I finally realised why Valhalla – or Odyssey or Origins before it – just had not clicked. And it took the mucky streets of Unity‘s Paris and Syndicate‘s London to bring it all into focus.

Continue reading “Assassin’s Creed Loses Its Charm When The City Is No Longer The Star”