Princess Cyd

Friday, April 13, 2018 - 10:00
Friday, April 13, 2018 - 19:30
VIFF Vancity Theatre
1181 Seymour St.
$10 adult; $7 child, youth, senior; $5 each for groups of 10 or more
Stephen Cone


Critics have noted that writer/director Stephen Cone has crafted the most underrated film of the year, and R2R concurs! The Chicago-based director has also garnered comparisons to the late Jonathan Deme.

Sixteen-year-old Cyd’s estranged aunt Miranda agrees to host her in Chicago over the summer. Miranda lives the low key life of an accomplished author, and is tethered to the home she grew up in with her sister, Cyd's departed mother. Decidedly not a reader, Cyd is completely oblivious to her aunt’s success. Instead, she is tethered to her phone and interested in soccer. Despite not knowing much about one another, a comforting familial intimacy soon develops.

Genuinely interested in the ways of the adult world, Cyd provokes her aunt with probing curiosity about her mom and where she came from. With her new-found maternal bent, Miranda counters, offering patience and compassion to her questioning niece. As they challenge each other on everything from spirituality to sex, they are confronted by personal truths. Miranda begins to realize that over the years of solitude she’s unwittingly relegated her desires to the bottom shelf. Cyd discovers new experiences and learns that she is more open than she thought. Unlike most films centering young queer characters, Princess Cyd is written with all of the positivity, richness and complexity that gender and sexuality deserve. Frequently funny, subtle, and insightful, the vulnerability and revelatory essence of their relationship proudly exclaims that we should celebrate each other, and most importantly, honour what brings us joy. One’s truth is one’s truth, whatever it may be.

Recommended for ages 14+

Themes: family, gender identity, sexuality, mental health, literature and poetry, suicide, love

Content Advisory: Underage alcohol consumption at a gathering of family and friends, with the consent of a guardian; smoking marijuana; some sexually suggestive scenes; suggested physical violence toward a young person.

Classification: 14A

Note: This film screens as part of the  program for grades 8-12.


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In partnership with:


"The Talk" True Stories About the Birds & the Bees 
Alain Delannoy | Canada | 2016 | 9 mins

Using a mix of hand drawn images, photographs, computer generated images as well as stop frame animated toys and props, the teenage memories of several individuals have been caringly recreated in order to best present the awkwardness of one of life’s strangest occurrences. The Talk has won numerous awards internationally, including; Hot Docs, AFI Docs, and Tribeca Film Festival.

Themes: sex, gender, memory, youth culture and experience
Advisory: Frank discussions about sex, gender and sexuality.



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Stephen Cone is a Southern-raised, Chicago-based filmmaker. His previous film, Henry Gamble’s Birthday Party, was selected as one of only 23 films to screen in the prestigious BAMcinemaFest at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, and was featured in the New York Times as a part of it’s “Anatomy of a Scene” series. The film also received the prestigious Chicago International Film Festival Silver Q Hugo Award, as well as rave reviews, and Time Out New York naming it “a coming out story for the ages.” Henry Gamble had its European Premiere at the BFI Flare Film Festival. Stephen’s prior film, the award-winning, critically-acclaimed The Wise Kids was raved about by the Chicago Tribune, and was a New York Times Critics Pick. It screened at more than 50 festivals worldwide, won 8 awards, including the Outfest Grand Jury Prizes for Outstanding US Feature and Outstanding Screenwriting. The film received rave reviews and appeared on several Best of the Year lists. His latest film Princess Cyd is easily the most underrated American film of the year, and Cone is being hailed as the next Jonathan Demme, with many critics naming Cyd on their top ten list. Cone teaches in the Department of Radio/TV/Film at Northwestern University.


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