This short film tells of two rugged journeys: that, autobiographical, of a young woman who learns she is harboring the AIDS virus; and that of the ancient Minoan civilization, wiped out by the greatest cataclysm in history. Today, the world is held hostage by a killer disease that is stealthier than a volcano, but it exacts the same price. Now, as then, some profound questions exist: How does humanity define itself? How do we measure our passage on this planet?
Tahani Rached’s powerful documentary enters the doors of an AIDS clinic in Montreal. We meet a group of dedicated doctors struggling to provide health care to their patients. This 1994 film explores legal and ethical problems surrounding HIV/AIDS and the struggle against fear, rumours and prejudice. It is still relevant today. In French with English subtitles.
This feature documentary is a portrait of Robert Coley-Donohue a man living with ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease, a fatal degenerative neuro-muscular disease that strikes two in 100,000 people. The film follows Robert over the last 3 years of his life. His experience is arduous, but also filled with hope and healing. If, like Robert, we can face death with grace and the comfort of family and friends, then death will hold less fear.
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 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.
In this short film, a 17-year-old girl refuses medical treatment that will prolong her life due to religious convictions. Her decision remains firm despite the pleas of her physician, who begins to question who has the right to determine a person's life or death.This short film is one of a series of short, open-ended dramas designed to stimulate discussion of values and ethics in relation to modern technology.
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 animated film originally aimed at young people in developing countries deals with a sensitive topic: the transmission of AIDS. Set in the marketplace of almost any Third World town or city, the film is an adventure story about a group of homeless street children who learn about AIDS: how to prevent it, how to care for people with AIDS and how condoms work to prevent the transmission of AIDS.
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.
This short documentary shines a light on the work of undertakers in a moving portrait that celebrates human touch at the seam of the mortal divide. When Peter dies in Yellowknife with no family members to claim his remains, he ends up in Janice's careful hands, where he is cleaned, shaved and dressed for his final resting place.
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.