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A Machine To Live In

Virtual Cinema
A Machine to Live In is about the imaginative and material processes of building one’s utopia. The film documents the history of the highly-controlled modernist planning in Brazil alongside radical projects in cult and mystical architecture. The film’s attention radiates outward from Oscar Niemeyer and Lucio Costa’s capital, Brasília, to the flourishing landscape of UFO cults, pyramids, monuments, and futurist projects.
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Aalto

Virtual Cinema
AALTO is a captivating journey into the life and work of one of the greatest modern architects, Alvar Aalto. The film shares for the first time the intimate love story of the Finnish architect and his wife, Aino Aalto, and highlights her importance as an equal architect colleague and visionary designer. The modern, sophisticated and liberal couple, who married in 1924, co-designed many buildings around the world and the film takes us on a cinematic tour of their creative processes and iconic buildings, including a library in Russia, a student dormitory at MIT, an art collector’s private house near Paris, and a pavilion in Venice. The film's director Virpi Suutari said, “I realized that no one is great alone and this film highlights the key roles of Aino Aalto and Alvar Aalto’s second architect spouse, Elissa, as well as the artisans and other architects who worked in the office.”
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The Arch.

Virtual Cinema
Taking the guise of a contemporary explorer, an Italian architect named Dada boards a flight to Australia. There, he begins an epic journey across four continents to speak with leading architects who serve as oracles of our time, revealing how the fate of humanity is shaped through the medium of architecture. These conversations provide Dada with new perspectives and raise many new questions about the future role of architecture: Should quality of life be the only goal for future generations? Are we on the verge of a more inclusive society where playing, learning, working and living together will take place? Will the demise of car culture give way to a more socially interconnected environment? What will sustainability mean in the future? Will future architects be able to adapt to the challenges of a more crowded planet, and are we, as humans, capable of building a livable future? In Dada's attempt to find answers, the architects ultimately lead us to re-discover lost meaning and
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Charlotte Perriand, Pioneer in the Art of Living

Virtual Cinema
The designer and architect Charlotte Perriand was a highly creative figure who left her mark on the 20th century. Free-spirited and politically engaged, she designed revolutionary furnishings and participated in the invention of modern dwellings that were in harmony with both their inhabitants and their environment. From her avant-garde battles alongside Le Corbusier in the 1930s to her experience in Japan and affirmation of a lifestyle based on openness and flexibility, this film, in the the shape of a notebook of memories, gives us an up-close and personal look at a life filled with passion and creativity, and opens us to reflections about contemporary society, as seen through the eyes of an exceptional figure.
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Escher: Journey into infinity (USA Only)

Virtual Cinema
Escher: Journey Into Infinity, narrated by Stephen Fry, is the story of world-famous Dutch graphic artist M.C Escher and is based on more than 1,000 letters, diaries and lectures he wrote during his lifetime. We hear him speak in his own words, about his life, his fears, doubts, politics, work and the amazement he encounters time and time again. The film travels to sites that were major inspirations for him. While Escher speaks, the camera records what he sees, as if it was his eye! Two of his sons, George, 92, and Jan, 80, reminisce about their parents. Additionally musician Graham Nash (Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young) talks about the rediscovery of Escher’s work in the 70’s. The film looks at Escher’s legacy and how his work continues to inspire comic strips, advertisements, movies, etc. and draws massive visitors worldwide to exhibitions of his art.
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Frey I: The Architectural Envoy

Virtual Cinema
Albert Frey, the unpretentious Swiss-born mid-20th century architect, aided in the introduction of Corbusian-influenced modernism to the United States. Through his innate curiosity of the American landscape, he developed an extraordinary design style, blending industrial techniques and a love of nature. This film explores his formative years while working closely with Le Corbusier in Europe. It also shows his important transition to America, including the famed Aluminaire House, the Canvas Weekend House, the New York Museum of Modern Art, as well as his Kocher-Samson Building in Palm Springs. The film reveals why Frey is such a significant force in the development of modernism in the United States. The film features Frey's early life up until 1939.
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Frey II: The Architectural Interpreter

Virtual Cinema
n 1939, Swiss-born Corbusian architectural envoy Albert Frey embarked on a decades-long journey of discovery. His world travels and love of nature would lead him to carve out a new style of modernism, leaving its indelible mark on the desert community of Palm Springs, California. With never-before-seen archival films, photographs and interviews, Frey II: The Architectural Interpreter continues to reveal the mystique of an influential architectural master. This is the second of a two-part documentary. The first part, Frey I: The Architectural Envoy was finished in 2018. Both films are by the director Jake Gorst and produced by Design Onscreen, and both will be available to see with the same ticket. Albert Frey, the unpretentious Swiss-born mid-20th century architect, was a key figure in the introduction of Corbusian-influenced modernism to the United States.
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George Nakashima, Woodworker

Virtual Cinema
Celebrated woodworker George Nakashima became famous for his slabs of "imperfect" wood, full of natural holes. The film reveals the personal journey he took to become one of the leading figures in the American craft movement. Nakashima's grandfather was a samurai. George was a nisei (a first generation child born in the US), and spent time in a brutal internment camp with his wife and young daughter during World War II. After finishing his Masters of Architecture at MIT during the Depression, he set out on a decade-long journey seeking a reason for his existence. His journey took him to Europe, to northern Africa, and to Asia where he used his training and worked as a modern architect. In Japan, he absorbed the aesthetic of Zen and the spirituality Shintos find in nature. In India, he found the key to creativity in a Yogi's ashram. The seeker returned to America to become a woodworker and use all he had learned from his travels.
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Hollywood's Architect: The Paul R. Williams Story

Virtual Cinema
Nicknamed “Architect to the Stars,” the African-American architect Paul R. Williams had a life story that could have been dreamed up by a Hollywood screenwriter. Orphaned at the age of four, Williams grew up to build mansions for movie stars and millionaires in Southern California. From the early 1920s until his retirement 50 years later, Williams was one of the most successful architects in the country. His list of residential clients included Frank Sinatra, Cary Grant, Barbara Stanwyck, William Holden, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. And his name is associated with architectural icons like the Beverly Hills Hotel, the original MCA Headquarters Building and LAX Airport. But even at the height of his career Paul Williams wasn’t always welcome in the restaurants and hotels he designed or the neighborhoods where he built homes, because of his race.
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Magical Imperfection (Canada Only)

Virtual Cinema
Magical Imperfection, tells the inspirational story of world-renowned Canadian architect Raymond Moriyama. Imprisoned in his own country during the 1940s because of his race, Ray found the strength to combat injustice by devoting his career to social justice and equality. Moriyama joined with Ted Teshima in 1970 to form Moriyama & Teshima Architects. Ray has applied his visionary architectural approach to numerous landmark projects including the Bata Shoe Museum, Saudi Arabian National Museum, Ontario Science Centre, Scarborough Civic Centre, Toronto Reference Library, Canadian Embassy in Tokyo and the Canadian War Museum. Such highly visible projects consistently earn praise for their attention to the needs and purposes of the people who use them. He has received some of the highest professional honors including the Confederation of Canada Medal, the RAIC Gold Medal, honorary degrees from ten Canadian universities, and the Order of Canada.
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Magical Imperfection (USA Only)

Virtual Cinema
Magical Imperfection, tells the inspirational story of world-renowned Canadian architect Raymond Moriyama. Imprisoned in his own country during the 1940s because of his race, Ray found the strength to combat injustice by devoting his career to social justice and equality. Moriyama joined with Ted Teshima in 1970 to form Moriyama & Teshima Architects. Ray has applied his visionary architectural approach to numerous landmark projects including the Bata Shoe Museum, Saudi Arabian National Museum, Ontario Science Centre, Scarborough Civic Centre, Toronto Reference Library, Canadian Embassy in Tokyo and the Canadian War Museum. Such highly visible projects consistently earn praise for their attention to the needs and purposes of the people who use them. He has received some of the highest professional honors including the Confederation of Canada Medal, the RAIC Gold Medal, honorary degrees from ten Canadian universities, and the Order of Canada.
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Making a Mountain

Virtual Cinema
“Welcome, welcome,” the CEO sang in 2011 when BIG won the architecture competition for a large waste-to-energy plant with a ski slope on top. A camera followed the process of a visionary project that combines waste management and infrastructure with spectacular architecture and a recreational urban space. The challenges pile up right from the start, along with questions: How do you even combine a waste-to-energy plant with a ski slope? How far is a property developer willing to go? And how much can an architect actually push through when all is said and done? This "cinematic construction site symphony", follows the main characters from the popping of champagne corks and the vision taking off, to the abrasions from the artificial snow, to the first trip down the black slope.
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Richard Leplastrier: Framing the View

Virtual Cinema
Richard Leplastrier is regarded as one of Australia’s finest architects, yet he’s anything but a household name. Shunning the limelight, he tucks himself away in his one-room home in a remote estuary north of Sydney — reachable only by boat. Leplastrier is the architect’s architect, refusing to become a ‘starchitect’. And while he designs beautifully crafted houses for his clients, his own lifestyle is closer to camping. This documentary follows the very private but charismatic Leplastrier as he designs the Blackheath house that epitomizes what he has learned over 50 years and the influence of his mentors, namely the Danish architect Jorn Utzon (Sydney Opera House), the Australian artist Lloyd Rees and the Japanese professor Masuda Tomoya.
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Saving North: Rescuing The Wooden Churches of Northern Russia

Virtual Cinema
Saving North is the story of a struggle for human and cultural survival in the mysterious and insular world of the Russian North. An outsider from England, photographer Richard Davies, enters this mysterious and vast region of the world with the hope of documenting both the glory and the tragic demise of its rapidly disappearing Wooden Churches. As Davies meets and becomes friends with some of his Russian photo subjects, he finds himself getting emotionally involved with their struggle. He decides to put down his camera and get involved with church restoration. Early on in our story Davies befriends the famed Russian architect Alexander Popov who is deeply involved in working to preserve and share with the world the beauty and value of these ancient structures. Popov has uniquely discovered and reinvigorated both the tools and processes that restore life back to the North. But it’s an uphill battle against strong and powerful forces.
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Short Films Program I: Inspired by Mentors

Virtual Cinema
This program honors the importance of learning from those who inspire us to be our best. The films include Pritzker Prize winners like Zaha Hadid and Glenn Murcutt to lessor-known, but equally important innovators, as seen through the lens of the filmmakers.
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Short Films Program II: Inspired by Materials

Virtual Cinema
This program features the material choices by architects and designers as the central character of each film. The range of films is broad including the last operating basalt quarry in Spain that supplied stone to Gaudi; the transformation of a natural disaster in Italy into the artistic expression of a theatrical stage set; a gathering place in Montana designed by a celebrated architect that evokes the interior layers of a tree; and a memorial built on the site of a sacred and historical space in Arkansas
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The Whole World

Virtual Cinema
Though utopian communities rarely live up to their promise, their bold attempt by remarkable people is a story worth telling. Francisco Piria was such a person. A Urugyuan businessman and son of Italian immigrants, Francisco was a politician, a tourist entrepreneur, a knight, a master of the great esoteric science—alchemical symbolism, and author of the first utopian novel of Uruguay. This film is the fascinating story of the building of Piriápolis, one of Uruguay’s great beach resorts, and the lifelong effort of this great pioneer, entrepreneur and visionary.
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There's No Place Like This Place, Anyplace (Canada Only - TV Version Free)

Virtual Cinema
There's No Place Like This Place, Anyplace looks at the transformation of a much-loved Toronto landmark, the Honest Ed's block, through the stories of its community members who are forced to relocate when it is sold to a developer. The film chronicles the evolution of their lives as they reconcile their history with the future, all while facing the biggest housing crisis the country has ever seen.
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There's No Place Like This Place, Anyplace (USA Only - FIlm Festival Version)

Virtual Cinema
There's No Place Like This Place, Anyplace looks at the transformation of a much-loved Toronto landmark, the Honest Ed's block, through the stories of its community members who are forced to relocate when it is sold to a developer. The film chronicles the evolution of their lives as they reconcile their history with the future, all while facing the biggest housing crisis the country has ever seen.
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There's No Place Like This Place, Anyplace (Canada Only - FIlm Festival Version )

Virtual Cinema
There's No Place Like This Place, Anyplace looks at the transformation of a much-loved Toronto landmark, the Honest Ed's block, through the stories of its community members who are forced to relocate when it is sold to a developer. The film chronicles the evolution of their lives as they reconcile their history with the future, all while facing the biggest housing crisis the country has ever seen.
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Tokyo Ride

Virtual Cinema
Acclaimed filmmakers Ila Bêka and Louise Lemoine return to Tokyo. This time, they embark upon an adventurous journey, in which they paint a charming free-form portrait of one of Japan’s most influential architects — Ryue Nishizawa. Traveling through rain and sunshine, interchanges and concrete bridges, we see the temples, restaurants, cafes, and houses he designed. On the road, they talk about life in the city, Japanese culture, European history, film, music, and the process of turning an idea into a building. The pair also grows intimately close with Nishizawa’s dear friend: his car, Giulia, an old Alfa Romeo whose moods determine the direction of their trip.
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