1993 Films

TITLE COUTNRY YEAR FILMMAKER(S) DESCRIPTION
Thinking Positive Canada 1993 Debbie McGee Another sensitive, thoughtful, and elegantly crafted film from home-grown McGee that speaks calmly to us of an alarming truth. Even in outports and relatively small Newfoundland communities, young people are vulnerable to becoming infected with HIV. The story centres on Trudy Parsons who was 20 when she contracted the virus, a young woman with the determination to show others that people like us do get it. The direct and candid way in which trudy and her friends discuss current social and personal views of sexuality makes for another stirring experience that inspires as much as it moves.
Out On A Limb: A Poem by Geraldine Chafe Rubia Canada 1993 Anita McGee The work centres around St. John’s poet Gerry Rubia and her poem Out On A Limb and takes a whimsical look at physical disability in a way that’s truly Gerry. The piece hopes to capture her spirit and sense of humor.
A Short History of Manners Canada 1993 Nancy Winsor This crowd pleasing film speaks for itself; the photogenically correct Lisa Porter appears as a jester, and other familiar faces that you've stood in line at Mary Jane’s with appear in one well-mannered guise or another. you’ll laugh, you’ll hoot, and you’ll say. gee. how did she do that?
The Good Olde Days On Signal Hill Canada 1993 Mary Walsh, Cathy Jones Do we really have to tell you that this is funny? Written and performed by CODCO--Cathy, Mary, Greg Malone and Tommy Sexton--this clever witty short produced for Parks Canada tells us something about the human history of Signal Hill. you’ve jogged it, walked it, necked and picniced on it, but I bet you’ve never seen it turned into an excuse for a game show. It’s good, it's humorous, and it’s ours. We rest our case.
The Ant and the Volcano Canada 1992 Céline Baril This charming visual narrative unfolds like a Chinese parable. 1997, the year of Hong Kong’s return to Chinese government and the name of the restaurant run by a small Hong Kong family. Their goal: to take the earnings and run to a freer place in the world. The options: Canada, or Iceland. The Ant and the Volcano plays lightly and deftly touch with the seriously limited options facing families like this one. Baril cleverly places us in the position of appreciative spectators, recognizing the innocent ways in which choices must be made and the earth-shaking consequences that then follow.
Women's Story China 1998 Peng Xiaolian Like the structure of a classic fairytale, this feature drama begins with three peasant women who resolve to seek their risky fortune in the wider world. One is trapped in an all-female family; another is escaping an arranged marriage; and the other needs money to care for her husband’s brothers and young son. Resisting the pressures of patriarchal Chinese culture is not easy, but adventures in Beijing teach these women things that they never dreamed possible.
Façade Canada 1992 Martyne Pagé Sort of a women’s version of Rear Window, this film explores what happens when two female strangers begin to eye each other from their respective apartment windows. One a young Asian writer and the other a new tenant, they interact in inevitable ways like familiar strangers. We were caught by this film--after all, neighbour watching is as common as breathing in St. John’s.
Me, Mom and Mona Canada 1993 Mina Shum Three members of the Shum family--a mother and two daughters-- candidly reveal the difficulties of being female and Chinese while dealing with their patriarchal husband and father, and the tired traditions of Chinese culture . As in all families, these women share blood and genetic history, but live their destinies differently.
Picturing Oriental Girls: A (Re)Educational Videotape USA 1992 Valerie Soe Geisha girls, dragon ladies, china dolls and Asian sex kittens that fill decades worth of American theatrical and television screens. When all of these mile-high piles of stereotypical representations of Oriental women are recontextualized in this film, the result is at once fresh and intriguing.
Return Home Canada 1992 Michelle Wong Chinese-Canadian filmmaker Michelle Wong explores her own identity, a culturally complicated one for a first-generation Canadian-born child. Uniquely revealing themes of displacement and gender-pressures, Michelle’s return home to Alberta occasioned this film and the surprising discoveries of herself and her cultural past that followed from the project. The making of this film returns the director to questions that she never knew she wanted to ask in the first place.
Sin City Diary USA 1992 Rachel Rivera A woman’s film about the lives of prostitutes who hang around the US Navy base at Subic Bay in the Philippines. As a Filipina American, filmmaker Rivera investigates her own uneasy relation to these women and the colonial culture which has kept them from dreaming about anything beyond life with G.I. Joe. This film lets women speak for themselves, persuading u at once of their strength and vulnerability. Powerful stuff.
A Matter of Choice Canada 1993 Francine Zuckerman Zukerman has skillfully and forcefully mixed documentary footage of a few decades of pro-choice work in this county with articulate talking heads. The result is engaging and affirming, a welcome refreshing relief from issue-centered video documentaries on victimization that tend to leave the spectator feeling like a used placard. A half hour after watching it you’ll still feel like taking some political action.
My Left Cyst Canada 1993 Pat Barker This film is just as it sounds: a black-humored animated look into the unpleasant world of ovarian cysts. Who else but a woman would make such a film, or need to? You’ll find yourself nodding at this film, especially the medical-profession-doesn’t-deal-with-us-right part. The humor emerges from our all-too familiarity with the whole doctor and women biz, but the animation in itself is clever and appropriate. There’s nothing here that even the squeamish can’t handle.
Sunday With the Castro de Fuentes Canada 1993 Diana Vasquez A good, strong story for such a short amount of time. A quasi-documentary cinematic game of a day in the life of a Spanish family, as remembered by one of its female victims. Part autobiography, part parable, part home movie. This film as an exotic, experimental pull about it. Eventually you figure out the narrative cinematic puzzle, and the reward is a poignantly clever little film.
Personal Effects Canada 1992 Lori Spring This is a weird one. It’s about 16-year old Alison who moves into a boarding house inhabited by strange men who apparently do bizarre things. Personal Effects is a tour de force, Canadian version. Let’s put it this way...in male intuition stores, the boy discovers what it mean to be a man. In female initiation stories, the girl discovers difference. You’ll be talking about this one over a pint afterwards, for sure.
Kanehsatake: 270 years of Resistance Canada 1993 Alanis Obomsawin A compellingly familiar documentary feature account of the 1990 78-day event that rattled in our Canadian backyard. Mohawk Indians squared off against the army for what seemed to be an unbearably explosive eternity. You’ve never seen footage from inside like this, nor have you witnessed the emotional intensity of such personal and devastatingly intense confrontations as shown here.
The Last Day of Chez Nous Australia 1990 Gillian Armstrong A co-sponsored feature with MUN Sunday Cinema Series, this wonderfully exploratory look at the lives of modern Australian women touches almost every social base, and then some. The terrific cast shows the ways we keep the home fires burning, even when we feel like burning down the home. through Kerry Fox’s strong performance and Bruno Ganz’s sensitive husband role, we follow the ambiguous triumphs of daily domestic and conjugal life. This movie will suck you right into the Southern Hemisphere, and you won’t mind a bit.
Juggling Gender USA 1992 Tami Gold The title only tells half of the story. This video will make you squirm and laugh with uneasy recognition. Jennifer Miller is a lesbian circus director with some stuff on her chinny chin chin that gives new meaning to the term “being out”, because when Jennifer’s out, the whole world wants to know, what’s the deal with her facial growth? Her answers to that question are witty and strong, forcing us to think at least twice about every assumption we have ever made about gender. Jennifer’s story is wild and wooly enough to change every habit you ever culturally acquired.
Free Advice Canada 1990 Dawna Gallagher The bad news: This hammer-over-the-head right-between-the-eyes satirical video occasioned some major divisiveness on the Steering Committee, with one member insisting on screening it because she really liked it. The good news: it’s only two and a half minutes long.
Thank God I'm A Lesbian Canada 1993 Laurie Colbert, Dominique Cardona Before all you straights run for the closet, let us assure you that this is a terrific richly textured documentary that celebrates diversity and choice. This award-winning made-in-Canada film looks at the wide ranging expressions of a number of lesbian women from artists, to academics and writers. There’s as much difference among these women as there are lesbian identities on the planet. that’s what really works here; the sheer pleasure of listening to such an inconclusive multi-voiced and honest range of expression. There’s something energizing about a film that refuses to give you one totalizing point of view on a subject like this.
The Passion of Rita Camilleri Canada 1993 Valerie Buhagiar It would be a sin to reveal too much of this hauntingly graceful visual short story. We will tell you that Rita is eight years old, a maltese Canadian, and a Roman Catholic. She can see, among other visionary things, Jesus fly. You’re on your own for the rest of it. In fact, Rita’s pretty much on her own too.
Elling Lien