This short documentary is a tribute to the unknown father. Emerging filmmaker Danic Champoux poses the question "How many men still have to uproot themselves and leave their families to get work?" as he sets out to search for his own father. He wonders about these men who are labourers, itinerants, and mostly nameless, but who are all exemplary providers. But at what cost?This film was produced as part of the Libres Courts collection of first-time documentary shorts. It features seven films from seven filmmakers offering a fresh look at the world.
Filmed at the Wing Fong Farm in Ontario, this documentary follows the tilling, planting and harvesting of Asian vegetables destined for Chinese markets and restaurants. On 80 acres of land, Lau King-Fai, her son and a half-dozen migrant Mexican workers care for the plants. For Yeung Kwan, her son, the farm represents personal and financial independence. For his mother, it is an oasis of peace. For the Mexican workers, it provides jobs that help support their children back home.
An important figure in the history of Canadian Indigenous filmmaking, Gil Cardinal was born to a Métis mother but raised by a non-Indigenous foster family, and with this auto-biographical documentary he charts his efforts to find his biological mother and to understand why he was removed from her. Considered a milestone in documentary cinema, it addressed the country’s internal colonialism in a profoundly personal manner, winning a Special Jury Prize at Banff and multiple international awards. “Foster Child is one of the great docs to come out of Canada, and nobody but Gil could have made it,” says Jesse Wente, director of Canada’s Indigenous Screen Office. “Gil made it possible for us to think about putting our own stories on the screen, and that was something new and important.”
This documentary looks at how children deal with a parent who has died by suicide. Meet 3 people who lost their fathers to suicide at an early age but learned the truth much later, after years of confusion, grief and guilt. In French with English subtitles.
This feature documentary is considered to be the forerunner of the NFB's Challenge for Change Program. The film offers in inside look at 3 weeks in the life of the Bailey family. Trouble with the police, begging for stale bread, and the birth of another child are just some of the issues they face. Through it all, the father tries to explain his family's predicament. Although filmed in Montreal, the film offers an anatomy of poverty as it occurs throughout North America.
This short documentary focuses on the children of alcoholics. In the relaxed environment of a mountain campsite, a group of young people discuss their anger and frustration, and talk about their struggle to cope with the problems created by their parents' drinking. By sharing their experiences, they open a door for others like them. Aimed primarily at an audience of elementary school children and older, this film provides an excellent vehicle for generating discussion about alcohol abuse and the family.
This feature documentary follows Le Théâtre de La Mouette, a travelling puppet theatre company comprised of a husband, his wife and their 3 teenage sons. The family has crossed Canada from east to west, and north to the Yukon, taking their amusing play (with a serious ecological message) to remote towns and villages. This film traces their 7th trip in 10 years, this time to the Maritimes and Newfoundland.
This feature-length drama explores the changing role of men in today's society by delving into the stories of 4 men and their relationships with women. Blue, in his mid-30s, has spent his adult years searching for the right woman, without any luck. Alex, the same age as Blue, married with two small children, says he needs his freedom. He's having an affair. Mort and Ashley are both in their 40s, divorced with children. Mort has found someone new but she balks at a permanent relationship. Ashley, devastated by his divorce, is unwilling to risk a new commitment.
This short documentary features Newfoundland fisherman Billy Crane, who speaks frankly on the state of the inshore fishery and how the lack of government support has contributed to the industry’s downfall. He is being forced to leave home to seek employment in Toronto. This film was made with the Challenge for Change program.
In this documentary shot at Canadian Forces Base Petawawa during a troop deployment to Afghanistan, children and teens talk about the particular circumstances of having soldiers as parents.
Directed by Claire Corriveau, Children of Soldiers lifts the veil on a reality shared by thousands of young Canadians, and on the difficulty of finding a balance between loyalty to the troops and staying true to themselves.
This smart documentary explores the intimidating terrain of girlhood by following three 12-year-olds over the period of one year. As these girls move from childhood to maturity, it's clear that peer pressure is an important influence, but as the films shows, the greatest influence in a young girl's life is family.
Filmmaker Victoria King's creative approach, including the use of "diary-cam" footage, not only follows the girls but allows them to question the world in their own voices. Ultimately, the film reveals the complexities of being 12, both satisfying our curiosity and inviting us to ask, What happens next?
A short doc about teenagers from war and conflict zones. It focuses on the 1985-86 International Youth for Peace and Justice Tour – featuring young people from Central America, southern Africa and Northern Ireland – and depicts their interaction with Canadian high school students. Contains graphic accounts of violence.