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The NFB Begins Streaming ‘The Curve,’ ‘Body and Soul’ and Other Humanistic Film Collections

Free online programs starting this month also include ‘The Big Reset,’ a collection of animated bedtime stories that bring to life the voices of Canadians touched by the pandemic.

The National Film Board of Canada has announced a lineup of new films that began rolling out September 21 on This lineup of highly relevant and profoundly humanistic new works joins the extensive catalogue of more than 4,000 titles already available as well as a collection of one hundred interactive works, most which can be viewed online at no charge.

Later this month and throughout October, a wealth of new content will continue to be made available. Streaming for free and produced by NFB studios across the country, this crop includes: the latest works in The Curve, the timely collection of projects exploring the pandemic; compelling feature-length documentaries like Astra Taylor’s What Is Democracy?; and finely crafted doc and animated shorts such as Katerine Giguère’s Open Sky: Portrait of a Pavilion in Venice, Chris Dainty’s Shannon Amen and Samuel-A. Caron and France Gallant’s Moments of Life, premiering on days that have been designated to help bring international attention to their respective subjects. 

Starting September 21

The Curve – The creators of this program are bringing to life the voices of Canadians touched by COVID-19. This collection is delivering thematically linked works in documentary, animation, and digital storytelling formats, being released at various times over the next few months. The newest works include compelling feature-length documentaries like Astra Taylor’s What Is Democracy?; and finely crafted documentary and animated shorts such as Katerine Giguère’s Open Sky: Portrait of a Pavilion in Venice, Chris Dainty’s Shannon Amen and Samuel-A. Caron and France Gallant’s Moments of Life.

The Big Reset - These animated bedtime stories for budding rebels in the post-COVID world present perspectives from four leading thinkers: Armine Yalnizyan; Munira Abukar; David Suzuki; and Bruce Mau. The films, running about three minutes each, are produced by the English Program Animation Studio.

  • Economics by Philip Eddolls
  • Governance by Ho Che Anderson
  • Worldviews by Malcolm Sutherland
  • Cities by Lillian Chan

Body and Soul - Inspiring, insightful, and inventive, these projects explore the physical and emotional aspects of pandemic isolation.

  • Love in Quarantine by Millefiore Clarkes (Quebec and Atlantic Studio)
  • How to Be at Home by Andrea Dorfman (Quebec and Atlantic Studio)
  • Come to Your Senses by Alicia Eisen and Sophie Jarvis (BC and Yukon Studio)
  • Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow by Laura Cortes, Alexandra Hook, Mel Eshaghbeigi and Jam3 (English Program Digital Studio and Jam3)

Starting September 27

  • The Rose Family by Félix Rose (2020, Babel Films/French Program Documentary Studio) feature-length documentary (127 min 58 s) - In October 1970, members of the Front de libération du Québec kidnapped government minister Pierre Laporte, sparking an unprecedented crisis in the province. Fifty years later, Félix Rose sets out to understand what could have led his father Paul and his uncle Jacques to commit the acts that ultimately ended in the tragic death of their hostage. The film is currently playing in more than 25 cinemas across Quebec.

Starting September 28

  • What Is Democracy? by Astra Taylor (2018, Ontario Studio) feature-length documentary (107 min) - Coming at a moment of profound political and social crisis, the film reflects on a word often taken for granted. Featuring a diverse cast, including celebrated theorists; trauma surgeons; activists; factory workers; asylum seekers; and former prime ministers; this film connects the past and the present, the emotional and the intellectual, the personal and the political, in order to provoke and inspire.

Starting October 5 – Marking World Architecture Day

  • Open Sky: Portrait of a Pavilion in Venice by Katerine Giguère (2020, NFB, in partnership with the National Gallery of Canada and the National Gallery of Canada Foundation) Short documentary (25 min) - Since 1958, the Canada Pavilion at the prestigious Venice Biennale has welcomed contemporary Canadian artists and architects and their works. The film is an intimate portrait of this architectural gem, designed by Milan’s famous Studio BBPR, which, like its gardens, recently underwent a major restoration, led by the National Gallery of Canada.

Starting October 10 – Marking World Mental Health Day

  • Shannon Amen by Chris Dainty (2019, English Program Animation Studio) animated short (15 min) - Based on the words, music, and art of Shannon Jamieson, this short animated film unearths the frantic, passionate, and pained expressions of a young woman overwhelmed by guilt and anxiety as she struggles to reconcile her sexual identity with her religious faith. The film is a memoir that reconstructs Shannon’s issues, which also torment other LGBTQIA+ youth like her who face discrimination.

Starting October 15 – Marking Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day

  • Moments of Life by Samuel-A. Caron and France Gallant (2020, Productions Appalaches/Canadian Francophonie Studio in Moncton) short documentary (20 min) - Breaking the silence on perinatal grief, Moments of Life follows the efforts of a group of bereaved parents. Driven by their desire to bring comfort to mothers and fathers who have lived through this painful experience, they have devoted themselves to reducing isolation and countering social misconceptions.

Starting the week of October 26 – Marking International Animation Day (October 28)

NFB presents Animation Week, a special slate of programming with vibrant and daring new works by animators from across Canada.

Source: National Film Board of Canada