Selected short and mid-length films

Jumping into the Metaverse

2021 | 5 minutes | Commissioning Editor, for Immerse x Venice Film Festival

Description: For Immerse x Venice, filmmaker Joe Hunting documents a whirlwind meet-up experienced and filmed entirely in the virtual platform VRChat. Liz Rosenthal and Michel Reilhac, curators of the Venice Film Festival’s VR Expanded program, take us on a world-hop. We first pick up bespoke avatars in Venice VR’s avatar gallery; then fly through a music-video landscape; jump through portals; and get lost in a mystical mountain panorama, encountering bears, birds, and mythical creatures. Along the way, Rosenthal and Reilhac provide insight (from an audio recording of an interview with Immerse editor Abby Sun) on the exploding creativity they have discovered in this new frontier of artistic virtual terraforming, world-building, and identity shapeshifting. (See video section below.)

Window Visits

2020 | 2m 20s | Director, Editor

Window Visits documents a family’s weekly afternoon visits to a grandfather in a long-term care facility during the COVID-19 pandemic, from a child’s perspective. These Monday window visits are short and bittersweet, but they are the family’s only regular major outings in that period, and the only time they get to see director Cizek’s father. “We’ve been documenting the visits through photography as well as stories on Facebook,” Cizek explained, “and I’ve been actively advocating for government intervention on long-term care. Meanwhile, at home full-time, my seven-year old daughter has become interested in stop-motion animation, so we’ve started delivering some of her remote learning assignments for her Grade One teacher through that format, and that has inspired the approach here too. … I was curious to know, what is this all like from a child’s perspective? I’ve never formally interviewed her before, and it was an interesting process for me as a documentarian. I cannot confirm or deny that any and/or all participants in this project were bribed with candy in the making of this film.” (See video section below.)

Dream Magic

2008 | 6 min | Director, Editor

This revealing portrait of NFB filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin was shown at a gala ceremony in 2008, where she received the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement. This film brings Obomsawin’s etchings to life through animation, while tracing her career spanning five decades. Her work (50+ films) has captured some of the most startling events in Canadian history, including the armed standoff between the Canadian Army and Mohawk warriors in 1991. Her films cross a spectrum of social issues, but they are always human. As Obomsawin explains in the interview, “For me, a real documentary is when you’re really listening to somebody; they are the ones that will tell you what the story is, not you.” (See video section below.)

In Search of the African Queen

1999 | 48 min | Co-director, Editor, Producer

An investigative documentary that examines the Canadian government’s covert mission to stop the harrowing, clandestine journey of 190 Sri Lankan Tamils who were seeking asylum in the industrialized world.

The Dead Are Alive

1996 | 38 min | Writer, Editor, Co-Producer

Golden Gate Award — San Francisco Festival 1996
Silver Spire — New York Festivals 1997
Gemini nomination for Scriptwriting category — 1997
Czech Golden Lion Award — 1998
ECHO Humanitarian Award — 1998
Selected for Banff Television Festival and Biarritz Festival, participated at Input in Mexico

This behind-the-scenes documentary is based on the diary kept by Belgian journalist Els De Temmermann. Beginning on April 6, 1994, the film covers a period of five months in which De Temmermann witnessed the greatest human tragedy of the last 25 years: a carefully planned and brutally executed genocide of one million people. Tracking the story from the death of the Rwandan president to the establishment of the sprawling refugee camps, this film weaves the threads of events into a coherent picture of horror on an almost unimaginable scale. Who were the architects of the genocide? What were the powers at play? And what were the roles of the international community, the church and the press? Broadcast around the world on television.



Jumping into the Metaverse


Window Visits


Dream Magic