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Brand New Broadview International Film Festival Honors Amazing Female Filmmakers

Local filmmaker legend Ann Wheeler’s 1981 docu-drama War Story — based on her father Ben Wheeler’s diaries of Japanese prisoners of war — opens festival on Friday

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A brand new film festival with a great name is popping up in town to celebrate female directors here and around the world.

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The first-ever Broadview International Film Festival takes place here on Friday and Saturday at Metro Cinema. Of course, “broad” has multiple meanings, which its founder, president and curator Geraldine Carr is happy to explain.

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“I grew up in a generation that heard the men in my life use that term,” Carr says with a laugh. It was.” In a way, I am taking it back and enjoying it. “

But that “broad” alludes to the wide scope of the festival.

international inspiration

Noticing gaps in local programming, Carr found inspiration in professional wanderings.

“As a filmmaker, I traveled with my films to places near and far,” she says. “When I was in Turkey at the Flying Broom International Women’s Film Festival, I saw some amazing films by women from all over the world. Films made by women in countries around Turkey that don’t support women in the first place. Not to mention supporting them financially to make… I was just overwhelmed.

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Meeting some of these filmmakers inspired Carr to take home their work. Even before the pandemic, Carr started dabbling with the concept in her lead-up series, and around International Women’s Day she was co-curating a film at Metro Cinema under the name Female Gaze.

“I’m just motivated,” she says. “I want to share the film with the audience in Edmonton. I want to share it with my friends. I want to share it with strangers.”

Edmonton is a bustling garden of select film festivals of all kinds. The latest is his NWFEARfest, his horror-themed NorthwestFest, which just debuted in October. Broad View is therefore the perfect addition.

As Carr explains, the mission is simple.

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Equipped lineup

By the way, the line-up is quite astonishing, including feature films, documentaries, animations, local and international, old and new.

One of the biggest scores is Carmen, a Canadian-Malta co-production. Written and directed by Valeria Buhagia, Cult is his McDonald’s co-star in his classics Roadkill and Highway 61.

It airs on Saturdays at 8pm and is also Malta’s official submission to the 2023 Oscars.

“What I love about this story is that it’s a coming-of-age movie about a 50-year-old woman,” says Carr. “In Malta there was a tradition that if his son went to seminary and became a priest and was given a parish, one of his daughters would go and be by his side as a maid for life.”

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The film is inspired by Bhagia’s aunt Rita’s experiences, and stars Natascha McElhone as a woman who has spent her life caring for her brother and suddenly faces freedom.

“I was blown away when I first saw it, because to me it’s a true movie,” says Kerr.

Another must-see show brought up by the festival organizers is the British/Iranian documentary A Moon for My Father, directed by Mania Akbari and Douglas White and showing on Friday at 8:30pm.

The story focuses on Akbari’s serious physical health issues that she has to overcome, Carr explains.

“So she has this beautiful way of telling stories visually. It’s poetic, it’s moving, it’s up close and in your face without sticking anything down your throat.” ”

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From Meneath: Hidden Island of Ethics, premieres Saturday at 2:30 PM at Metro Cinemas.
From Meneath: Hidden Island of Ethics, premieres Saturday at 2:30 PM at Metro Cinemas. photo courtesy

In addition to showing 13 Austrian animated shorts from 1pm on Saturdays, the festival has a program called Wahkohtowin: In Focus – a series directed by indigenous women on Saturdays at 2:30pm.

Indigenous Highlights

In the show, Kerr highlights the stop-motion animated short, “Meneath: The Hidden Island of Ethics,” directed by Terrill Calder.

“The main character is a baby with wonderful eyes trying to make sense of the world. On the one hand, the boarding school priests are talking about the seven deadly sins.” Anger, pride, envy, and on the other hand, her mother speaks of the natives’ seven sacred teachings: love, respect, wisdom, courage, truth, honesty, and humility.

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“It’s a gorgeous film that I think will open your eyes and your heart to what it was like for the indigenous people living in boarding schools.”

Another film to watch is War Story, a 1981 documentary drama by local filmmaker legend Ann Wheeler. It is based on the diaries of his father Ben Wheeler when he was held in a Japanese prisoner of war camp during World War II. The festival kicks off on Friday at 6:30pm.

“Bye Bye Blues will come for another time,” Carr says of Wheeler’s Genie Award-winning historical drama. “But this is her first film and the story is very compelling.”

Tickets for each movie are $15 and can be purchased at metrocinema.org or at the door.

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In addition to Kerr, many local luminaries are members of the Board of Directors, including Miranda Bromas, Hope Hatherley, Kathy Fisher, Connie Massing, June Meeboa, Beth Wishart MacKenzie and Naameen Youssef.

Broad View’s simple plan for the future is to see what happens and come back next year.

“We don’t want it to be too big or too fast,” says Carr. “Hopefully we can continue to do films that don’t necessarily have to be premieres.There’s a lot of content being created these days, but there’s been a ton of content created by women in the past, and there’s still airplay. Is required.

“And I know it has an audience.”


@Fisheye Photo


Broadview International Film Festival

Where Metro Cinema, 8712 109 St.

when friday and saturday

tickets $15 each

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Brand New Broadview International Film Festival Honors Amazing Female Filmmakers

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