Cinefest officials relish return to a normal film festival

·4 min read

Cinefest Sudbury is gearing up for its 34th edition to kick off in September, and on Thursday, the full 2022 lineup has been released ahead of the event.

The annual festival, which is one of the largest film festivals in Canada, will run Sept. 17-25, and will feature films, documentaries, and shorts from across Canada and around the world.

This year’s event also marks a return to normal, following two years of virtual and hybrid programming during the pandemic.

“We’ve been extremely eager to get back,” said managing director Patrick O’Hearn. “A festival like this really does thrive because you can get hundreds of people for a screening. It’s a community event. It’s almost like a place where people have family reunions each year. I can’t wait to see people I haven’t seen in years and welcome people to reconnect in this space.”

Throughout its nine-day run, the festival will take over half of the SilverCity Sudbury Cineplex in New Sudbury, where Cinefest will host 44 screenings across a number of curated programs.

Each night, the festival will host a gala film presentation, opening with a screening of Jeremy Lalonde’s Ashgrove, about a scientist’s desperate search for a cure to the water shortage crisis.

Other features will include Phyllis Nagy abortion drama Call Jane; country documentary The Return of Tanya Tucker: Featuring Brandi Carlile; romance drama The Swearing Jar; and Hirokazu Kore-eda’s Broker.

The Gala Presentations will also feature the film North of Normal from Carly Stone, which was shot in Sudbury, North Bay and Mattawa.

According to O’Hearn, the festival received a record number of submissions this year, which made culling selections down to the final lineup a challenge.

“We have a lot of great films that are really going to impact people,” he said. “It’s going to be hard for them to leave the experience. They’re going to be thinking about them for a couple of days.”

He added, “I think filmmakers this year have told some really interesting stories and thought outside of the box. I think audiences are just going to experience that.”

Here are some of the highlights from the program:

Special Presentations

- 752 Is Not A Number [Babak Payami, Canada, 2022]

- Aftersun [Charlotte Wells, UK/USA, 2022]

- Black Ice [Hubert Davis, Canada, 2022]

- Brother [Clement Virgo, Canada, 2022]

- Confessions (Confessions of a Hitman) [Luc Picard, Canada, 2022]

- Emily [Frances O’Connor, UK/USA, 2022]

Features Canada

- Au nord d’Albany (North of Albany)[Marianne Farley, Canada, 2022]

- Babysitter [Monia Chokri, Canada/France, 2022]

- The Breach [Rodrigo Gudiño, Canada, 2022]

- The End of Sex [Sean Garrity, Canada, 2022]

- Polaris [KC Carthew, Canada, 2022]

- We’re All in This Together [Katie Boland, Canada, 2021]


- The Ashgrove Experiment [Christopher Warre Smets, Canada, 2022]

- Bernie Langille Wants to Know What Happened to Bernie Langille [Jackie Torrens, Canada, 2022]

- Doug and the Slugs and Me [Teresa Alfeld, Canada, 2022]

- Forest for the Trees [Rita Leistner, Canada, 2021]

- Framing Agnes [Chase Joynt, Canada/USA, 2022]

- Ice-Breaker: The 1972 Summit Series [Robbie Hart, Canada, 2022]

- OKAY! (The ASD Band Film) [Mark Bone, Canada, 2022]

Cinema Indigenized

- Bones of Crows [Marie Clements, Canada, 2022]

- Ever Deadly [Tanya Tagaq & Chelsea McMullan, Canada, 2022]

- The Issue with Tissue [Michael Zelniker, Canada/USA, 2022]

World Cinema

- Coupez! (Final Cut) [Michel Hazanavicius, France/Japan/UK, 2022]

- Echo [Mareike Wegener, Germany, 2022]

- Free Skate [Roope Olenius, Finland, 2022]

- Holy Spider [Ali Abbasi, Denmark/Germany/Sweden, 2022]

- Piggy [Carlota Pereda, Spain, 2021]

World Doc

- A Bunch of Amateurs [Kim Hopkins, UK, 2022]

- Love in the Time of Fentanyl [Colin Askey, USA, 2022]

- Million Dollar Pigeons [Gavin Fitzgerald, Ireland, 2022]

- Tiger 24 [Warren Pereira, USA, 2022]

Cinefest Sudbury International Film Festival will run Sept. 17 to 25 at SilverCity Sudbury. Both in-theatre and virtual programming options are available. Tickets can be purchased for individual screenings, or in books of 4 or 10. Passports are also available to gain access to all festival film presentations, as well as other perks.

For more information and to view the full lineup, visit

The Local Journalism Initiative is made possible through funding from the federal government.

Twitter: @mia_rjensen

Mia Jensen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Sudbury Star