33' Lot | Sarah Genge

I sent over 300 letters — these 6 households responded. Do they share anything but the frames of their house?

About 33' Lot

I sent over 300 letters to Vancouver Specials all over the city, searching for participants to be documented. I received six responses. While these six households, varying in size, lifestyle, economic status and world view, are not a complete picture of the diversity of living in this city, they provide a snapshot into the array of people that make up Vancouver. Through extensive interviews with all six households, complete with thorough documentation of the homes themselves, I gathered intimate and honest portraits of the vastly different way people live. By using the Vancouver Special, both a banality and symbol of the city, as a literal framework, the film touches on a variety of topics, some pertinent to life in Vancouver — affordability, landlord-tenant relations, renovictions — and some mundane enough to be ubiquitous — family, parenting, interior decoration. Most of all, this film is an exploration of the similarities and differences between people across economic, social, and cultural strata.

ABOUT THE DIRECTOR | Sarah Genge

Sarah Genge is an artist who lives and creates on the ancestral, occupied traditional lands of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh-ulh Temíx̱w (Squamish) and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ təməxʷ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations of the Coast Salish peoples, now known as Vancouver, Canada. Sarah is interested in telling stories that represent everyday people and the mundane world. She is not too sure what she’s doing but she does know that she enjoys making. Sarah holds an undergraduate degree in Media Arts from Emily Carr University of Art + Design.

Send me an email if you would like to talk about Vancouver Specials. What kooky houses they are!

sarahegenge@gmail.com


Looking Back | Anna Anaka

A lonely mother and an angry daughter are forced to come to terms with their individual regrets within their relationship. Will they ever be able to forgive themselves, or each other?

This project was awarded the John C. Kerr Chancellor Emeritus Award for Excellence in Media and the Saralee James Memorial Award

Looking Back - Trailer

Synopsis

What is your biggest regret?

For Maria, a well-established, professional Filipino woman, her biggest regret has to do with her relationship with her mother, Gloria. When Maria finds out Gloria has passed away, she is angry that she has been abandoned once again without explanation (just as Gloria did when Maria was a child) – an anger she has carried with her throughout her life.

Gloria, on the other hand, is full of regret about all of the decisions she has made regarding Maria – a regret she has carried throughout her life. But given Gloria’s situation, was she really to blame?

Director's Statement

Looking Back is based on my personal story and my relationship with my late mother. The short takes the form of a musical, since music was a defining aspect of our relationship – it was a way that we could communicate, even when we couldn’t find the right words.

This film is both a tribute and an apology, fueled by regret and a renewed understanding of the many challenges both she – and many others who struggle with mental health – face throughout their lives.

Artist Statement

My work stems from a personal desire to challenge the status quo and to reflect on perceptions of ourselves and others. Issues of inequality and minority representation have always been deeply important for me to address and have manifested in my art practice through the recurring themes of identity, memory and morality.

As a first generation Canadian and a member of the sole Filipino family in the community where I was raised, I am no stranger to what it means to question your identity. I also see how some of that questioning has been influenced by not seeing my experience represented or reflected in my community and mainstream media. Through creating characters who disrupt the current boundaries inhibiting these stories from being seen or told, my hope is to bring about stronger and more diverse perspectives and move away from a linear way of thinking.

Time is also something that we perceive is linear, but is in fact, not. My work plays with space and time, as I feel that is also a reflection of life. We do not walk through life in a straight line; rather, we move back and forth between influences from our past, our hopes for the future, all the while joining (or avoiding) the paths of others.

I have pursued filmmaking as my chosen medium because it combines everything I love – storytelling, artistic expression, community building and critical engagement. These passions have led me to produce a body of work that allows me to join my audience in working through some difficult conversations, observe the beauty of humanity and capture its stories.

While much of my work is fictional, I hope my stories evoke something real and meaningful for the viewer, whether emotional, intellectual, or both.

Credits

One of the reasons I love being a filmmaker is that the artistic process relies heavily on creative collaboration. This film would not have happened without the generosity of some amazing people who gave their time, talents and resources to help a film student make a musical for her grad film!

Each of them made a huge impact in their own special and unique way, and I am humbled and grateful for their individual contributions in telling this story. You can find all of their names above.

ABOUT THE DIRECTOR | Anna Anaka

Anna Anaka is a Canadian writer/director of Filipino and Spanish descent. She currently resides in Vancouver, BC, but is proud to have been born and raised in Swift Current, SK. She holds a Bachelor of Media Arts in Film + Screen Arts from Emily Carr University of Art + Design.

Her art practice in filmmaking explores themes of identity, memory and morality. With a cinematic style that plays with space and time, her character-driven stories examine the human condition and stimulate critical engagement from her audiences.

In addition to her work in the commercial film industry, she is currently developing her first feature length projects: Discomfort, which addresses sexual exploitation in historical and contemporary contexts, and Looking Back, based on her dramatic, musical short of the same name, which explores themes of family and mental health.


Headwaters | Sam Breault

Headwaters is a documentary following Ian Santarossa’s search for an understanding of his inner traits and temperaments that surface when fly fishing, and how those meditations relate to a broader sense of self.

When I think about the films I want to create, they’re often these intimate looks into nature, and a deeper look at personal exploration that results in inward reflection onto what one truly relates to and resonates with. A sense of home. I try to show a glimpse into something I love and have people reciprocate and respond to it in a personally subjective, but similar way by documenting the natural world or people interacting with it. 

Through documentary filmmaking, capturing environmental subjects or niches such as fly fishing, I try to encompass and express the extraordinary simplicities of nature. I strive for the feelings it organically evokes by filming those moments with intention in unveiling what the natural world provides us with, rather than attempting to shape a moment into what I want it to be.

In particular, when filming fly fishing, the fact that I must depend upon a wild species is absolutely the biggest challenge. Fish are wild, and thus capturing the sometimes sparse moments that supervene the ordinary become more than just a shot––they become an experience. 

This project received an Honourable Mention for the John C. Kerr Chancellor Emeritus Award for Excellence in Media

Behind The Scenes

Above are a few behind the scenes photos taken throughout the production of Headwaters. Filming of Headwaters was compiled throughout summer and fall of 2019, as well as took place in various locations. Headwaters was filmed partly in the Pine Pass of Northern BC, the Cheakamus River in the Lower Mainland of BC, and multiple locations through Kananaskis Country in Southern Alberta.

ABOUT THE DIRECTOR | Sam Breault

Sam was born and raised throughout Northern BC and Alberta. She spent countless hours outdoors from an early age with her parents and older sister, taking an interest in fishing, hiking and camping. As she gained experience capturing the beautiful sights through documentary filmmaking and photography, she became more interested in conservation and natural environmental science. She is continuing with researching environmental science and resource development under Ruth Beer, a professor at Emily Carr and a practicing artist whose research-creation practice engages with issues of cultural and ecological impacts of resource industry expansion within culturally diverse communities in the Canadian North. Sam will be attending the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology for Forestry Technology in the fall of 2020 to further her education and usher the combination of her interest in environmental sciences and film media.

 

Prairie to Peak Media | @PrairietoPeakMedia

Director | Writer | Cinematographer | Editor | Sound Designer

Sam Breault

 

Sound Mixer

Doug Patterson

Featuring

Ian Santarossa

Composer

Phenix Warren

Thanks to

Carlito Ghioni & Lindsay McIntyre

ECU | FMSA Class of 2020

Danna & Dan Breault

Catherine LaFlamme

Michael & Young Fly Shop

Out Fly Fishing Outfitters