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Movie Multiplex

It was a long while since Cindy and I went to a movie, and then suddenly it wasn't. Three intriguing films were showing on three consecutive evenings at Victoria's repertory theatres. We went to them all.

On Monday we strolled down the block to the Vic Theatre for the new Joan Baez documentary Joan Baez: I am a Noise. It's a very good film and I was deeply moved by it. I respected her in the past but aside from Diamonds and Rust I don't really know her music (and even that song was introduced to me via the Judas Priest cover version.) By the end of the film, what struck me was the immense inner strength this woman possesses. There are a multitude of layers to her life and the filmmaker does an excellent job of letting the viewer sit with this complexity. A wonderful film.

Tuesday's film was further away; a bus to Cindy's school then another bus to UVic and their Cinecenta theatre. By the time we got there I was buzzing because the film on offer was the remastered Stop Making Sense, the 1984 concert film by Jonathan Demme and Talking Heads.

This is regarded as one of the best concert films ever made and it might well be #1 on my list. And yet, I had never seen it in the theatre. I first rented a VHS tape of the concert when I was in University and have seen it nearly a dozen times, but always with worse and worse sound and on smaller and smaller screens.

It was so much fun to see the band on the big screen. And it truly is a film. It's a stage play and a concert all in one and the remastered version looks and sounds incredible. I sang every note from memory (silently, to myself) and soaked up every move as if I was 20 again. I'd watch this film again tomorrow if I could.

We debated going out for a third night in a row but I couldn't help myself, so Wednesday saw us back on the bus to Cinecenta. It was the start of the Icelandic Film Festival and the movie on offer was Woman at War. It's a lovely film about a middle-aged woman turned environmental activist. (Or is it environmental terrorist?) It's a great story, lovingly filmed, with excellent acting, especially by the main character, played by Halldóra Geirharðsdóttir. The tone of the film is 100% Scandinavian, with little dialogue, dark humour and lots of life. Splendid in every way.

Nope. You're not going to get a thumbs down from me. These were three excellent films and it was thrilling to see them back to back like this. All day long I was pondering last night's movie, and then boom, it was something completely different and no less compelling. By Thursday, my head and my heart were full.

I hope you get the chance to see at least one of these films soon.