This Weekend at Hot Docs: Chavela, Motel, Ghosts of Our Forest

5 May 2017 / by Elissa Matthews
Featured Image for This Weekend at Hot Docs: Chavela
This Weekend at Hot Docs: Chavela, Motel, Ghosts of Our Forest
Reviews of Chavela, Motel and Ghosts of Our Forest

Hot Docs Canadian International Film Festival wraps up this weekend and it’s not too late to make it out to see one of the 100+ screenings taking place Friday-Sunday. Here are a few that the Morning Mixtape crew are particularly excited about: 


Chavela is the biographical documentary of Chavela Vargas a costa rican born Mexican singer known for her masculine aesthetics in dress and singing style and the infinite sadness and loneliness that she was able to convey through song. Hear the full review below:


Chavela screens on Friday May 5 & Saturday May 6. 


 Motel: The motel in morning light


Motel is a glimpse into the microcosm of a small community in Niagra Falls trying to find their place in a town that is in decline.  

Directed and photographed by Jesse McCracken, Motel focuses on the two managers of The Continental Inn, a former motel that has been rezoned and repurposed as longer term affordable housing. 

McCracken’s shooting style is gorgeous and stylized. He finds beauty in architecture that many would find garish. His portraiture is intimate, often very close up.  

The film pace is slow and comfortable, it’s as if we’re just stopping by for a visit at The Continental Inn. We follow the inn’s managers Linda and Brian through their daily activities and chores and their interactions with the residents.  

While the pace is slow, the profiles of the managers and residents are engaging and sympathetic and shows both the highs and lows they experience.

Motel screens at Innis Town Hall on Saturday May 5 at 8:30PM with the short Baby, I Hate To Go.


Ghosts of Our Forest

The Batwa Music Club (Uganda)

Ghosts of Our Forest follows a group of young Batwa musicians called the Batwa Music Club as they prepare for a musical performance in Kampala, the capital city of Uganda. Hear the full review below: 


Ghosts of Our Forest screens 3:15PM at the Scotia Bank Theatre on Saturday May 6. 



For more Hot Docs coverage, catch the full extended episode of Movie Mixtape with reviews of Ramen Heads, Bill Nye: Science Guy, Rat Film and Unrest: