By Mike Keenan.
Mix movie buff and Oscar awards forecaster and you get Scott Henderson. A film professor at Brock University, Henderson is one of the faces behind the Brock University Film Series, which kicks off its 2018 season at the Pen Centre’s Landmark Cinemas on Wednesday, Jan. 17.
For more than 40 years, Brock’s Department of Communication, Popular Culture and Film has hosted the film series to bring some of the best in international, independent and Canadian cinema to St. Catharines.
Now part of the Toronto International Film Festival’s Film Circuit, the selection committee (a nice job indeed; let me know if there’s an opening!) of professors Henderson, Anthony Kinik, Liz Clarke and Peter Lester has access to many of the most hyped films during award season.
“These are buzz films out of TIFF and ones that are getting a lot of interest,” Henderson says. “It’s a chance to see some of these hotly tipped films. Many of them are smaller films that might not come to cinemas in Niagara, so it’s a great way to see them on the big screen, the way they’re meant to be seen.” And that’s precisely my beef with local cinemas that seem to cater primarily to the young bang-bang, shoot-em-up flicks that abound while anything of artistic merit, if it even gets here, is short-lived. So thank you Brock!
The BUFS schedule kicks off next week with a screening of the French comedy C’est la Vie! and continues every Wednesday at 7 p.m. until April 4.
Henderson says there are many Oscar-hyped films on the roster this year, but points out the Italian coming-of-age drama “Call Me By Your Name” being shown March 7 is a particular highlight. “It came out last summer and I started seeing buzz about it right away and said, ‘we have to get this.’”
On Feb. 28, BUFS is hosting a special Oscar night where all of the Academy Award nominees for the Best Live Action Short Film category will be screened. “They’re always great little films and a lot of them are from up-and-coming directors who go on to direct big films the next year,” Henderson reports.
Tickets for each screening are $10 for adults and $5 for Brock students and can be purchased in the lobby of Landmark Cinemas each Wednesday night. Season tickets are also available through the BUFS website.
2018 Brock University Film Series Schedule:
Jan. 17 – C’est La Vie
Jan. 24 – The Divine Order
Jan. 31 – Human Flow
Feb. 7 – The Square
Feb. 14 – Beach Rats
Feb. 21 – The Florida Project
Feb. 28 – Oscar Shorts – Live Action
March 7 – Call Me By Your Name
March 14 – No film (March Break)
March 21 – TBA
March 28 – TBA
April 4 – Meditation Park