Meet Mavis, Misty and more in this year’s VIFF documentary lineup

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Mavis Staples with the Staples Singers.

A famous art collector, a gospel/soul legend and an American ballerina are among the people you can discover at this year’s Vancouver International Film Festival.

Now going into its 34th year, the VIFF has just has announced several documentaries for this year’s edition. The festival, which runs Sept. 24 to Oct. 9, 2015, features more than 75 nonfiction features. Here are some highlights.

Love Is All: 100 Years of Love & Courtship (UK) – Filmmaker Kim Longinotto has assembled scenes of flirtation, courtship and weddings from famous films, home movies and old newsreels and set them to music from English singer/songwriter Richard Hawley. It’s been called “the most romantic movie you’ll see this year.”

From Scotland with Love (UK) – Another montage film, this one sets archival footage of mid-20th century Scotland to lush chamber pop by King Creosote (From Scotland with Love is the title of a King Creosote album). “As we glimpse evocative vignettes of labour and leisure, protests and parades, strife and revelry, we enter a world seemingly conjured from the realms of fantasy rather than reels of found footage,” the VIFF’s description reads. “An immersive, moving and, at times, truly magical window on the past…,” says the Guardian.

Mavis! (USA/Canada) – A look at gospel/soul legend Mavis Staples, who first came to prominence in the 1960s as one of the Staples Singers. Fellow musicians Bob Dylan and Jeff Tweedy (frontman of the band Wilco, and producer of Staples’ most recent album) share their insights, interspersed with concert footage.

Peggy Guggenheim – Art Addict (USA) – Fans of contemporary visual art will dig this portrait of Peggy Guggenheim, who has not only amassed an impressive collection of contemporary art but also forsook her aristocratic birthright in favour of crashing international art scenes.

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A Ballerina’s Tale (USA) – A look at the struggles of Misty Copeland, an African-American dancer who broke through ballet’s racial homogeny. “Inspirational doesn’t begin to describe it,” according to Rolling Stone.

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Additional films will be announced on a weekly basis, with the full festival program revealed on Sept. 3, 2015.

VIFF festival passes and discounted ticket packs are available now at viff.org.

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