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The National Film Board brings Canadian Film Day online

Photo: National Film Board
The National Film Board brings Canadian Film Day online
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About the Author

Tyler Collins

Tyler Collins

Tyler Collins has been a reporter with Oakville News since 2016. Covering local news and live events, he specializes in film, theatre, and entertainment. He comes from Campbellton, NB, and has lived in North Oakville over 20 years. Tyler is a proud graduate of Journalism and Performing Arts from Sheridan College. Twitter: @MrTyCollins

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Earth Day isn’t the only holiday we’re celebrating this April 22nd – it’s also Canadian Film Day today. This nationwide event takes place on a Wednesday in late April annually, but most people will be celebrating slightly differently this year. And the National Film Board is here to help.

While Canada continues to stay at home and practice social distancing to limit the spread of Covid-19, the National Film Board can help celebrate today’s festivities.

Most people don’t know the National Film Board of Canada has a massive online database of Canadian films. There are thousands of titles ranging from short films to full features. You can find films in both English and French, and even find documentaries and animated works.

But the best part is most of their library is free to access online. While Canadians can’t currently access their regular libraries, having the National Film Board as a resource is now more important than ever.

Photo: National Film Board

Photo: National Film Board

Looking for some recommendations? One of the best new features is called The Twentieth Century. Matthew Rankin’s debut feature is a comedy-drama about the early life of former prime minister William Lyon Mackenzie King. It premiered at TIFF last September, and being a newer film it does cost to rent – but well worth it.

Lots of films are available for free

Some great free options I’ve seen include animated short Animal Behaviour and the documentary Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance. That feature is about a dispute about building a golf course on indigenous lands in Quebec.

The entire catalogue of the National Film Board’s library can be accessed online here. But for Oakville residents, there’s another place to find great movies today.

Photo: Entertainment One

Photo: Entertainment One

Another special event is also taking place in Oakville’s own film festival. The OFFA (Wilson Oakville Film Festival) is offering a digital screening of Maudie tonight at 7:00pm. The 2016 biographical film is about Nova Scotia painter Maud Lewis and her life as an artist.

The film stars Sally Hawkins as Maud and Ethan Hawke as her eventual husband Everett. It won seven Canadian Screen Awards and became a commercial success when first released. Tickets for tonight’s digital screening are available online here.

However you choose to celebrate, today is a great day to experience much of the great work that has shaped Canadian cinema. With a variety of options at all price points, the National Film Board is a great place to start looking.

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