September 27th to October 12th will be when this year’s Vancouver International Film Festival will occur. Lots to look forward to. Hundreds of films and shorts from 75 countries over these 16 days. Last year’s was a record-setter. This year the Film Festival wants to take things further.
You may remember last year I wrote about that year being the 30th for the VIFF, explaining the history and what to the festival showcases. Also you may remember the Festival records that year achieved. What’s also remarkable about last year is the Oscar success of some of the featured films from last year. The Best Picture winning The Artist was featured last year as was the Best Foreign Language Film winner A Separation.
This year’s VIFF also has goals of achieving a lot. There is estimated to be 380 films from 75 countries this year. Canadian and Asian film as well as documentaries are once again expected to be the highlighted genres of film at the Festival. What’s new this time is having the closing gala at the Centre for Performing Arts. Two live performances at the Centre are also expected to take place this year. Also added is a new real-time electronic ticketing system much like the one used at sporting events. The additions came upon the return of a $250,000 gaming grant the Festival once had until it lost its eligibility in 2009 as the government left adult arts groups behind in giving grants out. The grant returned as a result of the provincial government reassessing gaming grants.
Now that the grant is returned, the festival can continue to grow in both attendance and the number of films exhibited as well as the venues showcasing the films. The Granville 7 and its seven cinemas is once again the theatre with the most action. Pacific Cinematheque and the VanCity Theatre are the two other main theatres showing films throughout the sixteen days of the Festival. Temporary theatres showing films include the Park Theatre which will show a pair of films on two separate days and the Vogue Theatre which is scheduled to be a venue on nine of the sixteen days including the opening gala tomorrow night which will feature the screening of Canadian director Deepa Mehta’s Midnight Children.
As for me, I’m scheduled to do six shifts of five hours each. I actually volunteered this morning. It was good. Good to see a lot of volunteers I know back. Also exciting to see what featured films will be playing. I plan on taking in as many films as I can. Like last year, I’ll be aiming for a mix of Canadian, international, shorts and documentaries. I hope to post as many reviews here about the films I have seen. Anyways here’s to another year of film festing. If you want to check out this year’s fest, just go to the official website.
I’ll admit I’m not an expert at American Football, but the Super Bowl XLVI is coming up. Sunday the 5th to be exact. The stage is in Indianapolis. The commercials costed the companies $3.5 million each time they will air them. The halftime show will be Madonna but the game is strictly an East Coast affair with the New England Patriots facing the New York Giants. Which team will take home the trophy? Let’s break them down:
NEW YORK GIANTS
Of all of the six NFC teams to qualify for the playoffs, the Giants had the weakest record and was the only qualifying team not to win at least ten games: nine wins and seven losses to be exact. Nevertheless each playoff game they’ve played, they’ve gotten stronger. First was winning their wildcard game against the Atlanta Falcons 24-2, then came their Divisional Playoff win against the Green Bay Packers 37-20, and then their overtime win of the NFC Championship against the 49ers 20-17. Will their rapid improvement reach its peak on Sunday or will the Super Bowl be where their luck finally runs out?
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
While the Giants had the worst regular season results of the NFC’s playoff qualifiers, the Patriots had the best of the AFC’s with thirteen wins and only three losses. They didn’t need to play a wildcard match and won their Divisional match against Denver easily 45-10. Their AFC Championship victory against the Baltimore Ravens was tighter: 23-20. So far they have predominantly been the strongest team overall this year. However there was one important regular season statistic: of the Patriots’ three losses, one was against the Giants 24-20. That would be the last game the Patriots would lose all season. Will they get revenge at the Super Bowl or will they succumb again?
MY PICK: Now for my prediction. I know I’ve based a lot of opinion here on statistics. One thing I learned from Moneyball is that sabermetrics aren’t always right in the end. For the game however, I strongly feel the Patriots will win. It will be a tight game during the first three quarters with the lead alternating at least three times but the Patriots will grab tight hold in the fourth and go on to win it. As for the score, I won’t hazard a guess on that. I’ll just stick to predicting the winner.
Anyways go out and buy your munchies this weekend. Super Bowl XLVI promises to be exciting: both the game and surrounding events. So may the best team win on Sunday.