Setting up of the beach screen on Gimli Beach

Opening Day! – Gimli Film Fest 2017

Gimli – July 26, 2017 – Manitoba’s largest film festival returns for its 17th year today. The 2017 annual Gimli Film Festival kicks off with a full day of programming and a special opening reception. A spotlight will shine on great Canadian cinema, with many classic Canadian films screening throughout the day.

The Festival opens with Goin’ Down the Road, a realist dramatic portrait of two young men from Canada’s Maritime Provinces who come to the big city, Toronto, looking for good jobs and good times. The 1970 film is widely regarded as the marker for the beginning of the film industry in English Canada, and is often referred to as one of the best Canadian films of all time.

In 2016, it was named one of 150 essential works in Canadian cinema history by the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). In the afternoon, discover the work of fearless Canadian filmmaker Frank Cole, who entered the Guinness Book of World Records as the first man to cross the Sahara on foot. On November 29, 1989, Cole began another tormenting journey across Sahara by camel, filming his experiences in the dangerous climate and region. In Life Without Death the filmmaker as he confronts his fascination with dying. Life Without Death was the filmmaker’s final film before his 2000 murder by bandits on a return trip to the Sahara.

For family fun for all ages, join us for a curated retrospective of films from legendary award-winning Canadian filmmaker, Norman McLaren. McLaren was a pioneer in several areas of animation and filmmaking, including hand-drawn animation, drawn-on-film animation, visual music, abstract film, pixilation and graphical sound. His awards included an Oscar for the Best Animated Short in 1952 for Neighbours, and a 1969 BAFTA Award for Best Animated Film for Pas de deux.

Super Pass holders will have the added opportunity to attend a special opening reception at 7pm at Johnson Hall. Mingle with Film Festival staff and board as well as some visiting filmmakers and community representatives. Sponsored by Catherine Filmon and Elsebeth and Andre Kriening, the opening reception will feature appetizers from Bergmann’s on Lombard, Sugar Me Cookies dessert and Icelandic vinarterta from Afi’s Baking, wine from De Luca Fine Wines and beer from Brazen Hall. To preserve the memory, guests will be treated to caricature artist drawings, courtesy of RBC.