Moving Images: To Make a Prairie

From January 12 to February 18, the University of Winnipeg (UofW) is holding short film screenings called Moving Images to celebrate UofW’s 50th anniversary and the 1C03 Gallery’s 30th anniversary.

They run in a loop Monday-Friday 12PM-4PM and Saturday 1PM-4PM. There will be five screening programs.

I checked out the first screening program “To Make a Prairie” last Friday, which had four short films. Here’s some pictures/videos/thoughts:

1) Cattle Call (2008) by Mike Marynuik and Matthew Rankin

A livestock auction evolving on acid. So, depends if you like that sort of thing. I’ve liked what I’ve seen of Rankin. For example, the combination of over-dramatic music and crap-tastic apartments in  I Dream of Driftwood just gets me. There is a very good build up in both films. If the auctioneer’s voice doesn’t discombobulate you, the abstract animation will.

2) Queer Grit (2004) by Roewan Crowe

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Coming out to your Manitoba cowboy dad. More narrative and sentimental than the rest, which was refreshing, but still relatively experimental using stop-animation dolls. I liked the music and heavy-accented narration.

3) Souvenirs – Watermarks (2008) by Paula Kelly

Short documentary about the 1950s flood in Winnipeg. It’s the only documentary of the bunch. Some of the old footage is interesting to see, but besides that didn’t make a big impact on me. Perhaps the film would hit home if it connected to flooding dangers today, but that may disrupt the focus of the film.

4) Bon Voyage (2009) by Ryan McKenna

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Old people discuss a racially diverse opera while interacting with young deviants on a train. The french one of the bunch. I admired the film’s surreal dialogue and imagery. I saw Ryan McKenna’s latest feature The Heart of Madame Sabali last summer and was fond of it’s style and humour.

Bon Voyage on Vimeo

Overall, Moving Images was really enjoyable. If you’re in the area and have 20 minutes, I recommend stopping by the Gallery C103 at the UofW. If you do, be sure to let me know your thoughts in the comments.

“To Make a Prairie” wrapped up yesterday, but “The Personal is Political” starts Monday with a whole new batch of short films. I plan to view each screening program and share my thoughts here, so follow for more.

Thanks for reading!

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