This short documentary filmed at Saint Boniface General Hospital, in Manitoba, focuses on the work of 2 women: Gisèle Fontaine, who helps women in childbirth; and Louise Saurette, who attends the dying. Birth and death, moments of transition that involve a transformative journey, have much in common. The midwife and the chaplain offer themselves as guides on the painful and essential path of letting go.
This documentary short was produced as part of the Tremplin program, which enables young Francophone filmmakers to make a first production in a professional context.
This documentary introduces us to Stephen Jenkinson, once the leader of a palliative care counselling team at Toronto's Mount Sinai Hospital. Through his daytime job, he has been at the deathbed of well over 1,000 people. What he sees over and over, he says, is "a wretched anxiety and an existential terror" even when there is no pain. Indicting the practice of palliative care itself, he has made it his life's mission to change the way we die - to turn the act of dying from denial and resistance into an essential part of life.
This short animation illustrates the reactions of one individual whose doctor has just told him he will soon die. In a terse and sometimes humorous dialogue with his doctor, Nesbitt Spoon runs the gamut of emotions commonly experienced by people trying to deal with this devastating yet universal situation.
On October 13, 1997 the village of St. Bernard in the Beauce region of Quebec acquired sudden fame, unintentionally and despite itself. It was Thanksgiving Day when a bus accident wiped out two percent of its tiny population. The local Golden Age club was on an excursion to Île-aux-Coudres when it plunged into the Éboulements ravine. Four years after the most serious road accident in Canadian history, friends and family of the victims recount their sad journey. During a six-month period, we accompany the survivors, and follow the rebirth of a community after the tragedy. In French with English subtitles.
In a moving conversation with Dr. Balfour M. Mount, friend, colleague and treating physician, cancer victim Jean Cameron, a one-time volunteer social worker in the Palliative Care Unit of Montréal's Royal Victoria hospital, discusses how she has come to terms with her own illness and the perspective it has given her on the meaning of life. What she has to say is relevant to all. The depth of her insight and the grace of her being leave viewers moved and open to thinking more carefully about the meaning of their own lives.
This feature documentary tells the story of the Notre-Dame-du-Sacré-Cœur Congregation which was formed in 1924 when 53 French-speaking nuns separated from their unilingual English community, forming a new religious community that immediately began to campaign for the preservation of Acadian language, faith and culture. Convinced that education was essential for Acadian women, in 1943 the Congregation founded Collège Notre-Dame d’Acadie, where young women were able to study in French for the first time in New Brunswick.
This documentary focuses on the Yukon River Quest, the world's longest annual canoe and kayak race. Athletes come from around the world to test their endurance, racing day and night along 740 km of rugged river shoreline. The film chronicles the experiences of the all-female 2006 Paddlers Abreast team. By following them from the moment they climb into their boat in Whitehorse to the cheers that greet them in Dawson City, the film tells an exhilarating story of a group of women who have faced death and understand how precious life is.
This animated short challenges enduring myths, spawned by fairy tales and romances, about women in medieval society. It explores the differences and similarities between that distant period and our own, and shows what medieval women’s lives were really like.
Can a woman fully achieve self-realization while at the same time giving herself to the role of wife and mother? This is one question raised in this film documentary. Introspective, partly biographical, the film delves into the emotions of joy, anticipation and anxiety that a young mother experiences during the last several weeks before the birth of her second child. There is some footage from Czechoslovakia concerning maternity: a natural childbirth in a hospital delivery room and state nursery care for the children of working mothers.
This short documentary tells the story of a cheese—the famous Oka—and of the monks who make it. The Trappists in Oka, Quebec, began making the cheese around 1890, when a Trappist monk from France taught them the recipe, which dates back to the 11th century. Today, Brother Albéric continues to make the cheese at an abbey in Manitoba according to traditional methods and a secret recipe written in a mysterious notebook.
The subject is the actual crash of a small plane, which one man survived. Pat Crawley describes his view of the world now, after being on the edge of death. It is, he says, like being continually stoned--neutral but more fully aware, accepting life without bias, a condition he feels we are all coming to.
This documentary reveals the exploratory work of a team from the University of Montreal who seek to understand the states of grace experienced by mystics and those who meditate. Filmmaker Isabelle Raynauld offers up scientific research that suggests that mystical ecstasy is a transformative experience and could contribute to people's psychic and physical health, treat depression and speed up the healing process when combined with conventional medicine. In French with English subtitles.