The Comox Valley Art Gallery Film Series is a selection of titles from the Toronto International Film Festival Circuit. A total of 8 films will be presented during the winter/spring 2023 Series, with each film screening twice.
Films screen at 5PM on Sundays + Wednesdays at Landmark Cinemas — 2655 Cliffe Ave, Courtenay.
BUFFY SAINTE-MARIE: CARRY IT ON
This film will screen on Sunday, January 8 + Wednesday, January 11.
Director: Madison Thomas
Starring: Buffy Sainte-Marie, Joni Mitchell, Robbie Robertson
Length: 90 mins
Content Advisory: themes of abuse + addiction
The life, music, and activism of legendary Indigenous singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie are explored in this documentary that is as captivating as its subject, who smashed through barriers to become an inspiration to fans and fellow musicians alike.
A tribute to Buffy Sainte-Marie’s extraordinary life and career, Madison Thomas’s Buffy Sainte-Marie: Carry It On is as captivating and vital as its legendary subject, the first Indigenous person to win an Oscar (in 1983 for Best Original Song “Up Where We Belong” which she co-wrote and was featured in An Officer and a Gentleman). She was also the first recurring Indigenous guest star on Sesame Street.
A self-taught musician with a unique sense of phrasing and skilful songwriting, Sainte-Marie quickly became established in the 1960s folk-music mecca of Greenwich Village. Bob Dylan and fellow Canadians Robbie Robertson and Joni Mitchell counted themselves as fans. Sainte-Marie’s first hit, “Universal Soldier” — a hard-hitting indictment of those who blindly follow orders — became an international smash for her and for other artists like Donovan.
Sainte-Marie is more than just a singer. Her integrity and insistence on addressing subjects others shied away from gained her great respect. When she appeared on the TV show The Virginian in 1968, she demanded the producers hire Indigenous actors. She remains one of the few pop artists to refuse to have her rights bought out by Elvis. (Presley famously demanded full ownership of almost every song he recorded.) But it also led to her being targeted. Angered by her activism, the FBI tried to derail her career by demanding radio stations refuse to play her records. Her art and activism have always been deeply intertwined. Sainte-Marie is also remarkably self-effacing. Asked about her Oscar, she simply says she really shouldn’t be the only North American Indigenous winner to date.
This well-researched film divulges many lesser-known details of Sainte-Marie’s life, and brings together a fine collection of subjects whose love and admiration is palpable — most notably Joni Mitchell, who beams with affection when she talks about her. Buffy Sainte-Marie: Carry It On is a much-needed, inspiring biography of one of our most revered and courageous artists.
Tickets + Passes Available at CVAG:
Tickets are $14 for CVAG Members, $15 for Non-Members
Season passes for all 8 films are $98 for CVAG Members, $105 for Non-Members
Tickets are for the day specified on ticket only.
Tickets/passes are available for purchase at CVAG’s SHOP:MADE or over the phone at 250.338.6211. We are open Wednesdays – Saturdays, 10AM – 5PM.
Note: We recommend that you purchase tickets in advance. The films often sell out, and there may not be tickets available at Landmark Cinemas on the day of the screening. All seating is first come, first served. Please arrive at least 10 minutes before the start of the film; there is no seating after 5PM.
Click here for the full schedule of screenings for the CVAG Film Series – Winter/Spring 2023.