7th EDITION OF THE AU CONTRAIRE FILM FESTIVAL

7th EDITION OF THE AU CONTRAIRE FILM
FESTIVAL

October 22, 23 and
24
, at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts

Dispelling Myths. Erasing
Stigma

A Philanthropic Festival benefitting Montreal’s Mental Health Community

For
a 7th consecutive year, the Au Contraire Film Festival, devoted
to themes of mental health, returns with a richer selection than ever. The
international program invites high-schools, human resource and health
professionals, the mental health community and the general public. Sessions
will include multiple interactive panel discussions. A total of nine Canadian
premieres, four North American premieres and a special presentation will be
featured. The organization is proud to have recording artist Florence K
as spokesperson for the event.

Working
within the mental health continuum, the Au Contraire Film Festival
shares the event with various community organizations to use as their
fundraiser.” Erasing the stigma associated with mental illness requires
understanding and education. The Au Contraire Film Festival strives, through
cinema, to challenge myths and stereotypes, helping to raise public awareness
and promote social change.” Says Philip Silverberg, founder of the festival.

This
year, exceptional screenings will benefit, among others, Donald Berman UP
House
, RACOR, the Schizophrenia Association of Quebec and Chabad
Lifeline
.

Programming

This
7th edition of the ACFF will feature films from Germany, Australia, Belgium,
Canada, the United States, France, the Netherlands and Russia.
A screening
is specifically focuses on HR professionals who are charged with dealing with
both short and long term disability benefits. Mental illness represents about
30% of all claims received by an employer.

Tuesday,
October 22, 2019 at 3 pm,
Under the
theme Human Resources, four Canadian premieres at our Human Resource
screening
will spark discussions about the challenges facing companies in
addressing the mental health issues of their employees. Hi, I’m Dan by
American director Rosa Rodriguez recounts a special moment of an office worker
falling apart as he prepares for an interview. The French film Flexible,
directed by Matthieu Salmon, tells the story of Laure who takes
short-term contracts, each time hoping to turn it into a long-term employment.
From the United States, The Dog’s Story by director Jill D’Agnenica
is an absurd short animation that tells the tragicomic experience of an old dog
who is considering his dark future after being fired. Finally, from Russia, The
Narrator
, by director Julia Trofimova leads us into an experimental
therapy where a depressed employee navigates his workplace with a personal
narrator. Led by, there will be an interactive workshop on eliminating stigma
in the workplace will be given by Jason Finucan of StigmaZero.com.

At
7:00 pm
The beneficiary of ACFF Opening
Night
proceeds will be going to Donald Berman UP House, a community center
serving adults with chronic persistent mental illness. A Canadian made
animation and 2019 Oscar nominee, Animal Behaviour by directors David
Fine, Alison Snowden will kick off the evening. It is an absurd metaphor for
the differences we each share as human beings and the associated stereotypes.
It will be followed by Quebecker Mathieu Arsenault’s film “Head First”,
which tells the story of a guy who cashed his RRSP and left his pregnant wife
in search of his Californian muse.  Dr. Karl Looper, Chief of
Psychiatry at the Jewish General Hospital, will lead a post-screening panel
discussion with the director and the film’s subjects.

On
Wednesday, October 23 at 7 pm, for the benefit of the Schizophrenia
Association of Quebec, whose mission is to improve the quality of life of
people with schizophrenia and related psychoses, the “Soiree-Lumière
will have two highlights. First, the festival will pay homage to a Quebec
personality who has outstandingly contributed to a better understanding of the
universes related to mental illness. The guest of honor for the 2019 edition
will be Dr. André Delorme, psychiatrist and former National Director of Mental
Health and Forensic Services (MSSS). Then, a special Quebec presentation
of the film Our Lucky Hours (France, Switzerland, Belgium), director by
Martine Deyres. This documentary tells of the years 1939 and 1945, when more
than 40 000 patients died of hunger in French psychiatric hospitals. Only one
place escaped this disaster, the asylum in a village isolated from the center
of France: Saint-Alban-sur-Limagnole. Why? The evening will culminate with a
panel discussion with Dr Delorme and Martine Deyres.

Thursday,
October 24 at 3 pm
, the ACFF
collaborates with RACOR (Alternative and Community Network of Organizations);
an association representing nearly a hundred community and alternative
organizations involved in the mental health of Montrealers, whose goal is to
raise awareness and promote a better understanding of mental health among
government bodies and the general public.

The
screening will begin the French film The Thwarted, directed by Stéphanie
Vasseur and Sandrine Terragno. This is narrative animation of nine characters
who cannot express themselves as openly as they would like because of their
personal barriers. The Best Way, a French film directed by Ingrid
Heiderscheidt
follows with the fiction of Sabine searching for a famous
“suicide instruction manual” to find the ideal way to end life once
and for all … painless!  From Australia, All These Creatures,
winner of the Palme d’Or for short film at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival and
directed by Charles Williams, tells the story of a teenager trying to
unravel his memories of a mysterious infestation affecting his father. From
Sweden, A Cup of Anxietea by director Emma Hjelm, is an animated
narrative documentary short film interviewing six different women talking about
nervousness. Finally, French director Elina Chared’s film Hearing
Voices
brings to light a woman named Marianne, touched by voices, who
describes her peer-to-peer recovery work. To close this evening, Elina Chared
will lead a panel discussion.

At
7:00 pm, Chabad Lifeline, a Montreal organization dedicated to
individuals and families affected by addiction, will be the ACFF’s Closing
Night
beneficiary. The evening starts with Being Here, a film
directedby Sydney O’Haire is about Charlie fighting her internal
demons and finding her family in a place she least expects: re-hab. Closing the
ACFF, Lamar Odum and Eli Nash will present the audience, (in
English) personal testimonies of their sex addictions.

Of note is the ACFF annual
free Youth Awareness Matinée for senior high school students. The topic
in 2019 is Eating Disorders + Body Image. The screening of these short
films will be followed by Lauren Bagwell’s spokenword lived experience.
(This program is in English)

The Au Contraire Film Festival

Place : Cinéma du Musée at The Montreal Museum of Fine
Arts , 1379-A Sherbrooke Street West

Tickets Information : 514 798 0791 / info@acff.ca

Progam and Box Office: https://www.acff.ca

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