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Canada, 1997 (MIFF 1998, Documentaries)

Director: Noam Gonick

A perfect and timely companion to Guy Maddin's latest feature, Twilight of the Ice Nymphs, Noam Gonick's penetrating documentary is a thorough study of emerging genius displaying the matchless Canadian sense of irony. Narrated by passionate Maddin devotee, Tom Waits (joining a fanclub that also includes Martin Scorsese), Waiting lor Twilight opens with the surprisingly monumental preparations for ...Ice Nymphs before backtracking to follow the eccentric Maddin through his early shorts and television experiments.

What emerges is the account of an obsessive cinephile struggling in isolation (both physical and cultural) to make movies like no other. Eschewing a traditional film school education, Maddin was the classic neighbourhood guy goofing about with friends, taking in movie marathons from various couches and finding his way, technically, as he went.

A real-life cast, as outlandish as that of one of Maddin's own films, is assembled to tell the tale. The barber/film buff who completed Maddin's encyclopaedic film education while executing a classy trim. The academic who briefed Maddin on camera operation, lensed one shot and left the set of his first film confident that the director had all the essentials to forge a career. Maddin's pals who joined him to create Canada's (the world's?) first Survivalist/Militia comedy talk-show, the host and guests appearing on camera in camouflage balaclavas yelling political paranoia slogans!

Maddin himself is extensively interrogated on set in an ice-hockey locker room and in bed with the 'flu! Informative and enormously entertaining, Waiting for Twilight is crucial viewing for fans and initiates alike.

Noam Gonick is a Winnipeg native, born in 1972. He studied at Ryerson Polytechnic University and Vancouver Film School as well as working in theatre and as a photographer. In addition to authoring a book on cult Canadian director Bruce La Bruce, Gonick has directed a number of Super-8 and video works including Slow Water (1987), Workitbitch (1989), Strange Fruit (1991) and Exit/Portal (1995).

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