National Canadian Film Day 2021
- Trapline + At the Bottom of the Sea
- Ellie Epp, Caroline So Jung Lee
- National Canadian Film Day 2021
- April 21 (Wednesday) through May 4 (Tuesday)
New restoration! The exquisite debut film of Alberta-born, B.C.-based artist Ellie Epp is an acclaimed but underseen marvel of Vancouver’s first wave of avant-garde filmmaking. Composed of twelve discrete, fixed-position shots, the 16mm short captures small, ephemeral moments in a Victorian bath house soon to be demolished. Its tenderly observed nonevents — sunlight dancing on ruffled water, partitioned glass taking on abstract form, children resting in a shower stall — are divided by lengths of visible film leader, a reminder of the work’s essential materiality. On the soundtrack, acoustics of swimmers, heard but mostly unseen, map the shape of a tangible space otherwise splintered in the painterly visuals. Epp’s elegant film, shot in London, England but completed in Vancouver, was a self-professed variation on the structuralist — and male dominated — trend in West Coast film art. Its mix of austerity, fragile beauty, and unobvious emotion earned it a place in 2017’s “Canada on Screen” poll as one of the 15 indispensable works of Canadian experimental film and video.
Read Ellie Epp’s reflections on the film here.
At the Bottom of the Sea
Caroline So Jung Lee
A Hot Docs selection and winner of Best Canadian Short at VIFF 2019, this captivating 16mm work from Emily Carr alum Caroline So Jung Lee delivers a powerful and poetic meeting of analogue experimentation, personal travelogue, and feminist rallying cry. Filmed in South Korea in 2018 amid a historic women’s movement against systemic misogyny, Lee’s expressionistic short employs bromide drag, light leaks, double exposure, and ocean imagery to elevate — and interiorize — its footage of faces, places, and women in protest. The soundtrack braids an evocative score by Robin Lough with voices of female interviewees and demonstrators. In Korean and English.
Feature Image: Trapline, Ellie Epp 1976
Media Images (L to R): 1–2 Trapline; 3–6 At the Bottom of the Sea, Caroline So Jung Lee 2019