Films for All Ages

Approved for Adoption

Jung Henin, Laurent Boileau Belgium, France, South Korea, Switzerland 2012 75min

ORIGINAL TITLE: Couleur de peau: Miel
In French and Korean with English subtitles

Filmmaker Jung Henin animates the story of his unconventional upbringing as a Korean child adopted by a Belgian family. Jung weaves his story using animation, Super 8 home movies, and archival footage, showing his progression from the orphanage, to meeting his new blond siblings in 1971, to the return visit to his birthplace in Seoul four decades later.

Themes: adoption, cultural differences, identity

Recommended for ages 13+


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Roberta Durrant South Africa 2013 97min

In English, Xhosa, Afrikaans w/ English subtitles

Fourteen-year-old Felix Xaba dreams of becoming a saxophone player like his late father. Despite the disdain of his church-going mother, who is firmly of the opinion that jazz is the devil’s music, Felix is determined not give up. He is so determined that he manages to obtain a scholarship to attend an elite private school for music. Further, he finds out about his father’s former band mates who, without his mother’s knowledge, encourage him in his love of the saxophone, and help him practice and prepare to play in the school’s jazz concert.

Themes: dreams, perseverance, jazz and education                                    

Recommended for ages 8+ or students in grades 6, 7 and 8
Content Advisory: Consumption of alcohol, alcoholism discussed, parental death discussed, religious references, mild language, bullying, gun seen in flashback sequence.

Horizon Beautiful

Stefan Jäger Switzerland, Ethiopia 2013 88min

In English, German and Amharic with English subtitles


Swiss soccer magnate Franz travels to Ethiopia to promote soccer and get some media-friendly images to prop up his reputation as a humanitarian. On the streets of Addis Ababa, 12-year-old Admassu sees a chance to use his soccer skills to impress the big boss, and secure a future as a football pro based in Europe. When Franz ignores him, Admassu convinces a group of thugs to kidnap Franz. If Admassu can arrange Franz’s freedom, Admassu thinks the grateful businessman will take him on the first plane out. That’s the plan. Shot entirely on location in Ethiopia, this film uses non-professional local actors to capture the sights and sounds of the community at the heart of the story.  Franz and Admassu’s relationship presents a clash between cultures, ages, personal dreams and basic human ethics with a resolution both surprising and honest.

Themes: media, soccer, adoption, racism, classism, friendship, poverty and greed.

Recommended for ages 12+ or students in grades 6, 7 and 8

Italo Barocco

Alessia Scarso Italy 2014 100min

A True Tale
Original title:
 Italo Barocco  
In Italian with English subtitles


Inspired by a true story, Italo Barocco vividly depicts the life-altering friendship between an extraordinary dog and a lonely child. One day, a good natured stray dog by the name of Italo wanders into the small Sicilian town of Scicli. At first, Italo's arrival causes a terrible uproar because everyone in the village is fiercely opposed to having stray dogs around! Everyone... except Meno, a precociously wise ten-year-old, who is as lonely and introverted as can be. Since his mother passed away Meno has shut everyone out, including his workaholic father. It will take all the unconditional love a special dog like Italo can give to force Meno out of his shell, leading him into a series of adventures that will teach him the difference between acting like a grown up and actually becoming one.

This comedy is sure to delight dog lovers of all ages. The director will be in attendance.

Themes: bond between humans and dogs

Recommended for ages 12+


Dave Schram Netherlands 2013 91min

In Dutch and Arabic with English subtitles

Jochem's classmates bully him all the time. His friend David doesn't join in, but he is scared to say anything. On the face of it Jochem doesn't seem to be bothered by the harassment. Then, one morning the headmaster tells the class that Jochem didn't come home after a party. David feels guilty. Together with a friend, David sets out to find Jochem and tell him he’s sorry. Based on the book by popular Dutch author Carry Slee, Regret! is a realistic story of the devastating consequences that can result if young people don’t stand up and speak out against bullying. 

Ricky: Three's a Crowd

Kai S. Pieck Germany 2013 88min

Original title: Ricky: Normal war gestern

In German with English subtitles

Ten-year-old Ricky wants to be just like his older brother Micha, while Micha just wants his baby brother to get lost. Things change when the tough and headstrong Alex along with her dog move to town. Micha gets Ricky to spy on Alex for him. However, in his efforts to win Alex’s affections, Misha goes one step too far.

Themes: sibling rivalry, adventure, redemption

Recommended for ages 12+

Shana: The Wolf's Music

Nino Jacusso Switzerland, Canada 2014 95min

In English **

Twelve-year-old Shana is a talented musician who lives with her father on the Lower Nicola Indian Reserve near Merritt, B.C. Since the death of her mother, she has retreated into her own world, stopped going to school, and hardly ever plays her violin. Shana's life takes a decisive turn when her new teacher discovers her musical talent and registers her at a Vancouver music school. A few days before the entrance exam, Shana’s father sells the wolf’s head violin that her mother played. During her adventurous search to retrieve the violin, Shana plunges deeper and deeper into the forest, where she encounters the white wolf - and the spirits of her ancestors.

Themes: music, First Nations, spirituality, coming of age.

We Don't Wanna Make You Dance

Lucy Kostelanetz USA 2013 95min


The rock/funk band Miller, Miller, Miller and Sloan hoped to make it big in 1980s New York City music scene. They had talent, a unique sound, and fans—everything but a record deal. This documentary is full of surprises, irreverent humour, and poignancy. Click here to see the film's website and trailer.

Themes: coming of age, music, creativity, do it yourself (DIY)

Recommended for ages 13+

Note: this program screens as part of the Youth Media Conference for high school students