Over the weekend of October 14-16, the 2022 Charlottetown Film Festival (ChFF’22) showcased 35 independent films of varying lengths and genres at City Cinema. The “little film festival of big dreams” continued in its dedication to showcase and celebrate films from and about Atlantic Canada.
Eliza Knockwood is this year’s recipient of Women in Television and Film-Atlantic’s (WIFT-AT) 2022 Salute Award. This award celebrates the achievements of women and gender diverse people on PEI for their own work and/or for their impact on filmmaking across the Island. Members of PEI’s filmmaking community selected Knockwood for her dedication and significant contributions to filmmaking on Epekwitk/PEI. Knockwood’s documentary The Ice Walk was featured on opening night at ChFF’22 and was followed by a poignant question and answer session.
Classics at City Cinema sponsored an Emerging Filmmaker Award, which was given to Devin Shears for Grown In Darkness (NL).
A jury of five judges selected this year’s winning films:
Best Performance in Acting went to Dayo Ade for his role as Anthony in Cinema of Sleep (NS/PEI) which is about a man who plans to bring his family from Nigeria to join him in the US. These plans are threatened when a mysterious woman shows up at his motel room in need of help. When he wakes up to find her dead in his bed, he must untangle a strange mystery that forces him to question his own reality.
Best Cinematography went to Proximity (NL), about a woman living in a small Newfoundland town who labours all day on land while she awaits her husband’s boat to return from sea. While she longs to be out on the water as well, she is expected to be anchored to their home, where her labour is solitary and unseen. As she goes through her tasks, the “feminine” and “masculine” alike, she is reminded that she has everything she needs to be free.
The Middle (NS) won Best Short Film. This short experimental drama tells the story of Maggie, a young woman who moves to Toronto to make a life for herself. The film is an exploration of memory. Through a split screen, the film intends to examine the moments in one’s life that are remembered together.
Ty Griffin won Best Director for his film Cicerone (NB) about a young aspiring screenwriter who takes a ride along to research his script. But this is no ordinary ride along: he’s researching for a gangster film, and he may have bitten off more than he can chew.
Devin Shears won Best Screenwriter for Grown In Darkness (NL). This short film is about Henry who lives alone on his farm growing rhubarb in a dark cellar when his friend Emmanuel arrives to collect the harvest. Together the two spend a few days tentatively exploring the boundaries of their relationship.
Bernie Langille Wants to Know What Happened to Bernie Langille (NS) won Best Documentary in its recreated world of a family mystery in miniature, as a man sets out to uncover the truth around the strange and unresolved death of his grandfather, who died in 1968.