The 22nd Annual Barrie Film Festival kicks off Oct. 18 with Willie, a Canadian film. The film tells the story of Willie O’Ree breaking the  colour barrier in the NHL. It is one of more than 10 documentaries in a lineup of films.

The 10-day festival in October will include a mix of new releases, short films, parties, as well as Q&As with special guests.

This year marks a new Environment Series. It features three films ranging from The Biggest Little Farm, about a couple that trade city living for 200 acres of barren farmland and a dream of harvesting in harmony with nature to Modified, a food lover’s journey into GMOs. It also includes Poisoning Paradise, a documentary by Pierce and Keely Brosnan about the pesticides poisoning Hawaii, a country that is dear to their hearts.

“This is a film that will really upset people,” said BFF director Claudine Benoit of the subject matter where land in different communities in Hawaii is used to test pesticides.

As Barrie audiences tend to like music documentaries, BFF delivers two.  David Crosby: Remember My Name centers on the singer-songwriter’s journey as a member of three major groups in music history The Byrds; Crosby, Stills & Nash; and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.  Ron Howard directs an in-depth look at musical phenomenon Pavarotti.

The popular Short Film Competition features 19 this year, culled from 98 global entries. The three categories: High School, Simcoe County, and Open will be shown on Oct. 19 with Filmmakers’ Party and awards to follow at the Sandbox Centre.

There will also be a few more venue changes such as the Opening Night party which will unfold at the Uptown Lobby after the screening. The After Party Celebration, which also closes the festival Oct. 25 moves to the Common Good Café & Social House.

The Barrie Film Festival takes place Oct. 18-27. For more details visit

photo: Willie, a Canadian film, opens the 22nd Annual Barrie Film Festival Oct. 18.




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