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How to Make the Most of This Year’s DOXA Documentary Film Festival

Still image from ‘The Tomahawk’.

While we wait this whole COVID-19 thing out for a final stretch, the DOXA documentary film festival gives us a good reason to stay in and check out what’s been happening out in the world while we’ve been collectively learning how to cultivate a sourdough starter.

There isn’t a better year to check out DOXA’s exciting line-up of documentaries as they celebrate their 20th anniversary. For their big birthday, the venerable film festival is pulling double duty, hosting an online streaming festival and a drive-in from May 13-15 at the PNE Amphitheatre. A true rarity in the city limits! As food for thought, here’s a few to get you started:

For those hungry for how communities are using food to power social change, check out Food for the Rest of Us, a documentary that follows four vibrant stories of food projects making a difference in their community. For an amuse bouche, there’s The Tomahawk, a documentary short film exploring the problematic North Vancouver diner/institution as part of the Hometown Banter series, or Koto: The Last Service, exploring a Japanese restaurant in Campbell River with a 40-year history that’s been hailed as one of the first authentic sushi experiences in BC.

If you’re looking to get in on the DOXA drive-in experience and flex your take-out tailgating game before the show, there’s lots to choose from. For fans of Scout’s Definitive Records column, FANNY: The Right to Rock, might be your jam. Director Bobbi Jo Hart tells the story of a 70s rock band like no other — all-female, with Asian-American and LGBTQ+ members — who struggled to overcome the limitations of an industry and a society hellbent on painting them into a hyper-sexualized corner.

Keeping track of the city through Sean Orr’s Tea & Two Slices? The (War on) Drugs, Social Movements and Liberation, a three film series programmed by VANDU (Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users), may be what you’re looking for with one of the films in the series – Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers’ Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning of Empathy – being featured at the drive-in.

With plenty of ways of experiencing DOXA this year, grab some take out and open up a window to the world. Just make sure that if you’re ordering off of Uber Eats, that you watch The Gig Is Up. It might give you a better idea of what’s really going on with that Pad Thai you ordered.

Burdock & Co to Host One-Night-Only ‘See Ha La’ Pop-Up, July 23rd

Feeling a bit adventurous? The name of the event literally translates to "Just try it" in English - the sort of laid-back summer attitude we can totally get behind.

Transport Yourself to the Streets of Georgia at the ‘Georgian Night Dinner’, July 28th

From the food and wine, to the singing and toasting, this is shaping up to be a pretty special night!

Hit the ‘Burg and Burg’ Pop-Up Event Going Down This Weekend in Vancouver

“Burg and Burg” pop-up burger and wine bar will be serving up what they consider to be the “best Smashburger in the world.” this Saturday. With a claim that bold, you’ll definitely want to pay them a visit and judge it for yourself!

Nine Shows & Art Exhibitions to See This Summer

From new public art installations to gallery and museum exhibitions, in-stores and more - there is a plethora of offerings on view this summer. Here's a selection that I recommend checking out while you can.