Vancouver International Film Festival

Following the Canadian Premiere in the capital Ottawa, TITO ON ICE will travel to meet the west coast audiences at Vancouver International Film Festival.

Three screenings are scheduled within the Arts and Letters section:

“Embarking on a barnstorming tour of the former Yugoslavia, graphic novelists Max Andersson and Lars Sjunneson (Bosnian Flat Dog) cart along a macabre papier-mâché “mummy” of Marshal Josip Broz Tito encased in a refrigerator. At border crossings, intimidating guards are reduced to giddy fans, clambering for photos with the late dictator’s effigy. Subsequent stops prove stranger still: artisans incorporate the shells that destroyed their cities into their handicrafts… a makeshift gallery of illustrations is found on the walls of a decimated apartment block… a collector has amassed a menagerie of “mutant” Mickey Mouse figurines originating from former communist countries…

Only heightening their journey’s surreal nature are the astonishing stop-motion animation sequences conceived by Andersson (who shares directing credit with Helena Ahonen). Dramatically shot in 8mm and featuring dozens of sets handcrafted from refuse, these fantastical interludes offer a cracked-mirror reflection of a real world in which recognizable borders—on both maps and in art—have fallen. Furthermore, they pay tribute to the scrappy DIY spirit that inspires individuals to pull themselves from the wreckage and strive to create spaces for art to happen, simply because it’s something that needs to happen. Guided by a propulsive soundtrack of Balkan new wave and punk, Tito on Ice is a freewheeling exploration of the enduring power of icons and the importance of identity, be it national or personal.

(VIFF review of Tito on Ice)

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