Top 10 Date Night Films at VIFF 2015

With something for every taste, catch one of these films at VIFF with your special someone to make your date night one that you won’t forget.

Love is all: 100 years of Courtship: 

Kim Longinotto’s film is a glorious valentine to love with an assemblage of flirtation, courtship, weddings and a bit of hanky-panky. Some scenes are familiar but mostly these are forgotten films, or they’re home movies, snippets of old newsreels, orphan sequences lost and found. Artfully entwined and set to Richard Hawley’s luxuriant ballads, they become the most romantic movie you’ll see this year. TICKETS.

Our Loved Ones:

In 1978, Guy is found dead in the basement of the family home in a small village in Quebec. The real cause of his death remains a mystery for most of his family. Years later, his son David, now a loving father of two children, secretly still carries the weight of this tragedy. Likewise, David’s daughter must contend with her father’s suffering. VIFF favourite Anne Émond directs this accomplished drama about life, family, forgiveness and grief. TICKETS. TRAILER.

Cemetery of Splendour: 

Somewhere in Isan, in Thailand’s Deep Northeast, an ancient royal cemetery is being disturbed by developers. Nearby a school pressed into service as an army hospital houses soldiers with a mysterious sleeping sickness. What’s the connection? Apichatpong’s inimitable mix of dream, fact and speculative fiction teases out the answer, with some steely political implications.  Very different in tone and style from Uncle Boonmee, but no less haunting. TICKETS.

Thanatos, Drunk: 

On the fringes of Taipei, Rat, who’s dating a mute prostitute, holes up with both his brother Shanghe, who dances in gay bars, and their friend Shuo, a successful gigolo, who also happens to be sleeping with Shanghe’s cousin… Using a deck consisting only of wild cards, Chang Tso-Chi deals out a succession of surprises in a drama that leads us through the city’s nightclubs and alleyways, and sets the brothers on a collision course with a gangster hell-bent on revenge. TICKETS.

Right Now, Wrong Then:

What’s right, what’s wrong in relationships, especially when you’re married and edging towards an act of adultery? Hong’s scintillating new film offers two antithetical versions of events over two days and one night in Suwon, a town near Seoul. A man arrives a day early for an appointment and kills time flirting with a painter and her friends. The situation makes for another wry comedy of manners, laced with heavy drinking and regrets. TICKETS.

45 Years: 

Two towering performances by screen icons Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courtenay make Andrew Haigh’s slow-burn drama a must-see. A week before their 45th wedding anniversary, the Mercers’ genteel life in the English countryside is threatened when Geoff receives a letter saying that the body of his long-dead first love has been recovered–perfectly preserved–in the Swiss Alps. TICKETS.

Three Stories of Love: 

Film Director Ryosuke Hashiguchi has likely given more pleasure to VIFF audiences over the years than any other Japanese director, and this is his crowning achievement to date: three interwoven tales of individuals learning to cope when love slips through their fingers. The protagonists are a bereaved bridge-repairman, an unhappy housewife with creative ambitions and an elite gay lawyer. Wildly funny in parts, but the overall tone is worldly and very wise. TICKETS. OFFICIAL WEBSITE.

It’s Already Tomorrow in Hong Kong: 

Recalling Before Sunrise’s sparkling chemistry, Emily Ting’s impeccably scripted romance is positively effervescent and wonderfully alive. After crossing paths in clamouring Hong Kong, Josh (Bryan Greenberg) and Ruby (Jamie Chung) set off through the vibrant metropolis, drifting down detours and embarking on countless conversational digressions. Given that we fall for this pair instantly, there’s exquisite tension in watching as circumstances conspire to keep them apart. TICKETS.

In Your Arms: 

Afflicted by an aggressive motor neuron disease, Niels opts to die with dignity and asks his nurse, Maria, to escort him to a Swiss clinic. As they make the trek, Samanou Acheche Sahlstrøm crafts a bold drama that’s profoundly moving without ever feeling manipulative. There’s emotional ugliness lying in wait but it’s ultimately rendered beautiful by its honest insights. TICKETS. TRAILER.

Love And… 

Chinese-Korean director Zhang Lu doesn’t do mainstream entertainments, but this four-chapter conundrum is funny/sad in a way that’s actively seductive. Studded with top Korean stars–and featuring a Chinese translation of Borges, a Memories of Murder clip and much else–it looks at love and madness, acting and being, presence and absence. A high-protein menu, but Zhang’s touch is unfailingly light and witty. TICKETS.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: