Vancouver International Film Festival:

Fans line up for a movie at the Vancouver International Film Festival.

Fans line up for a movie at the Vancouver International Film Festival. (Photo by Julia Vergara Carnero)

The Vancouver International Film Festival is over, but if you weren’t been able to get out and see any movies, or you missed out on some, here’s your last chance. Until Oct. 17, you can see audience favourite movies from the festival at the Vancity Theatre and some others.

The Vancouver Film Festival, founded in 1982, is a non-profit cultural event and among five largest festivals in North America. This year, there were more than 340 movies from 70 countries. There were more than a 100 Canadian movies. With all the best movies from all of the world, cinephiles were in heaven.

I went to see an emotional story from Mexico, about four teenagers travelling from Central America to the U.S. border in search of a better life. Travelling by cargo trains, they faced harsh realities where terrible fates were waiting most of the travelers. After watching La Jaula de Oro, still wiping the tears, I came out of the theatre, where there were a few line-ups of people waiting to be seated for other movies.

Bruce Goodnow, in the middle of the line, was waiting to see a Hong Kong action movie. He came from Seattle and bought tickets for 20 different movies, some action and some romance. He comes to Vancouver Film Festival every year to watch movies and “to spend time with my wife.”

“I like to see different kinds of movies,” Goodnow said. “I like both Hollywood and international movies. International movies have a little more introspection in the characters and they are a lot more based on the feelings of the characters rather than the action.”

The festival films are quite different from the better-known Hollywood movies.

Mika Lane from Vancouver says: “In the independent films, women are allowed to be strong and they don’t have to have the tits hanging out to do it and the same with men, they are allowed to be vulnerable, they don’t have to be he-man. I think that’s why people like the independent films. Because they show reality, instead of the dream the Hollywood wants us to buy into. They want us to buy into that you have to be young, you have to be beautiful, and you have to be perfect. Women have to be sexy and pretty all the time and men have to be handsome and strong. That’s all crap as it’s not the real world at all!”

VIFF offerings covered the range, from romance to action, fiction to nonfiction and documentaries to feature films.

“In Toronto Film Festival there are more famous movies, whereas here you see movies you won’t be able to find anywhere else. There is that uniqueness,” said Alice Cornfold, the volunteer at the Cineplex Odeon International Village.

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