Rendezvous with Madness starts November 8

Rendezvous with Madness to bring insanely good films to the CAMH


It's a film festival about mental health, run out of the mental health hospital that was once so memorably featured in Timothy Findley's insane-o-palooza, Headhunter. The only thing missing from the Rendezvous with Madness picture is actually running the festival during Hallowe'en. Instead, you'll have to wait until November 8 to begin viewing this year's lineup of short and feature films from all over the world.

I know we're supposed to call it the CAMH now instead of the Queen Street Mental Hospital, but then again, Rendezvous with Madness - which is run out of the CAMH and whose charter is to program films touching on mental health and addiction - is using the "insanely good films" pun in all its promotional materials this year. So maybe the PC boundaries are finally slipping a bit.

Regardless, Rendezvous (which makes use of the CAMH's in-house theatre for screenings, and enlists staff volunteers from the Centre's patients) is one of the most exciting and unique festivals in our already festival-glutted city.

The festival kicks off next Thursday, November 8th with its gala presentation of Carl Bessai's feature film Normal, recently featured at the Toronto Internaional Film Festival. The film stars Carrie Anne Moss and Canadian film standby Callum Keith Rennie among an ensemble cast of people whose lives are rent by the death of a 16-year-old basketball star.

Programmes screening later in the festival's 9-day run include The Art of Mental Health on Friday the 9th, which looks at the inevitable connection between insanity and creativity. The Queer Madness programme on Wednesday the 15th explores gender identity, and features a return performance of Girl Inside, which screened earlier this year at Hot Docs.

The festival closes with the feature film Extra Ordinary by Canadian filmmaker Laura Sky, a documentary about people dealing with mental health issues. The director will be in attendance.

Tickets and further information about RWM can be found at the festival web site.


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