As part of GFF’s efforts to celebrate Manitoba 150th anniversary, the Festival is excited to announce the lineup of a special MB150 Manitoba Film Retrospective.  While there are so many great films made across Manitoba’s history, GFF decided to focus on films and stories made-in-Manitoba that have flown under the radar, despite being incredible filmmaking accomplishments.  The selected films portray a diverse collection of stories and filmmaking voices, across decades!

Thanks to Donald K. Johnson for supporting the Manitoba Film Retrospective in 2021!  

Thanks as well to MB150 for sponsoring all of GFF’s MB150 programming this year, including the Manitoba Film Retrospective, Manitoba Home Movie Archive and the creation of 8 new Manitoba-made films!  Thanks as well to our other Manitoba Project sponsors, including the Asper Foundation, Canada Council for the Arts, Thomas Sill Foundation, Winnipeg Foundation, Manitoba Arts CouncilManitoba Film & Music, Video Pool Media Arts Centre, Winnipeg Film Group, ACTRA Manitoba and IATSE 856.

Manitoba Film Retrospective
Feature Films:  

Barbara James

dir. Winston Washington Moxam
2003 | Manitoba | 80 min
Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021

A pregnant woman contemplates a life filled with mistakes when she realizes her unborn baby has stopped moving.

Brown Town Muddy Water

dir. Jesse Green
2015 | Manitoba | 52 min
Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021

Brown Town Muddy Water honours the ancient relationship between Indigenous people and the meeting place known as The Forks. This television special chronicles musicians who shaped Winnipeg’s main street in the 1960’s like the late Percy Tuesday, Errol Ranville and Billy Joe Green. For the emerging urban Aboriginal community, echoes of home sounded through music, dance, story and gatherings. Peoples lived experiences of emergence, segregation, racism, camaraderie and resistance are as resilient as the downtown streets of Winnipeg. The professional musicians that grew up on this notorious strip paved the road to success for forthcoming generations of Indigenous artists.

Hey, Happy!

dir. Noam Gonick
2001 | Manitoba | 76 min
Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021

On the outskirts of Winnipeg after the fall of Western civilization, a pornography-merchant sets out to seduce 2000 men.

The Nature of Nicholas

dir. Jeff Erbach
2003 | Manitoba | 97 min
Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021

A surreal fable set on the Canadian Prairie, The Nature of Nicholas is the tale of a young boy wrestling with an attraction to his best friend while tormented by visions of his dead father.

True Confections

dir. Gail Singer
1991 | Manitoba| 95 min
Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021

A witty teen tests men, morals and manners as her family tries to marry her off in 1958 Canada.

“It’s a winningly offbeat little charmer from Canada in which Leslie Hope keeps slipping into her own fantasy world, as her Jewish parents browbeat her for not settling down with a nice young man. The familiar Jewish neuroses get another airing, but are enlivened by some nicely surreal touches from director Gail Singer and the Walter Mittyesque daydreaming of Hope. The performances from the largely unknown cast are also spot on”

– BBC Radio Times, February 2000

What We’ve Pulled Off So Far

dir. Kevin Nikkel
2021 | Canada | 80 min
Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021

Manitoba master documentarian Kevin Nikkel explores the roots of filmmaking in his home province. Through the decades, we see the film and community that has given Winnipeg and Manitoba notoriety as the underground filmmaking hotbed of Canada!


The Strongest Man vs. The Flying Bandit

1. The Strongest Man in the World
dir. Halya Kuckmij
1980 | Manitoba| 29 min

Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021

2. Ken Leishman: The Flying Bandit
dir. Norma Bailey
2005 | Manitoba| 47 min

Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021

Champ libre (Free Range): 9 Short Films by Manitoban Francophones

Curated by Stéphane Oystryk

Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021

  1. En trois-temps, dir. Carole O’Brien
  2. Fraction, dir. Alain Delannoy
  3. Au pays des esprits, dir. Rémy Huberdeau
  4. Mouvement, dir. Danielle Sturk
  5. Bon Voyage, dir. Ryan McKenna
  6. Un jour au camp franco-survie, dir. Jacquelyn Hébert
  7. City of St. Boniface, dir. Dominique Rey
  8. Hyper-Distrait, dir. Damien Ferland
  9. Tabula Rasa, dir. Matthew Rankin

10-Year RBC Pitch Competition Retrospective

Watch on GFF On Demand | July 12 – 25, 2021
Watch via FREE Live Stream | 3pm, July 24 on GFF’s Website

  1. MARK, dir. Justina Neepin | 2013 | Manitoba
  2. Black Rainbow, dir. Kyle Sanderson | 2014 | Manitoba
  3. Crash Site, dir. Sonya Ballantyne | 2015 | Manitoba
  4. Annabelle, Kevin Tabachnik | 2015 | Manitoba
  5. The Debut, dir. Allegra Chiarella | 2017 | Manitoba
  6. If It Ain’t Got, dirs. Miles Crossman & Nicola Baldwin |2018 | Manitoba
  7. Palm House (Eternal Youth), dir. Erica Ulrich | 2019 | Manitoba
  8. First Session, dir. Matthew Van Ginkel | 2020 | Manitoba
  9. Anak, dir. Joanne Roberts | 2021 | Manitoba