OTTAWA’S CINEMA FOR INTERNATIONAL AND INDEPENDENT MOVIES

Thank You, Ottawa!

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The ByTowne is now closed.

It's possible that, after the pandemic has been brought under control,
new management will take over the space and offer big-screen wonderfulness again.

The building is being maintained, with all its facilities and equipment intact,
in preparation for that hoped-for day.
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Visitors

"We have art so that we may not perish by the truth." - Friedrich Nietzsche

Poster art for VisitorsFamous for the Qatsi trilogy of Koyaanisqatsi, Powaqqatsi, and Naqoyqatsi, names taken from the Hopi language, director Godfrey Reggio has made another exquisite visual poem in Visitors, his first film in over a decade. If the Qatsi trilogy reflected on ideas of balance, transformation, and war, Visitors asks a very different question: Who and what is a visitor when we look around ourselves on this planet? Using this idea as a metaphysical departure for his visual reverie, Reggio takes us on a unique voyage into the mysteries and wonders of the universe.

Shot in dazzling high-definition black and white, the film proves once again that Reggio is a visual genius, open to the magic of experience, masterly at editing his images into a work that calls upon its audiences to find their own meaning in the piece. More akin to music than narrative storytelling, Visitors creates moods and tones, allowing each of us to explore potential connections and associations. At times we enter an almost dreamlike state – notably with Reggio’s meditation on human hands, as expressive as faces, interacting with technological tools (touchscreens, keyboards) that have been removed from the frame. The effect is mesmerizing, and Glass’s score is a perfect complement.

– Piers Handling, Toronto International Film Festival
 

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