National Film Board of Canada

National Film Board of Canada

The National Film Board of Canada (NFB) is a federal cultural agency within the portfolio of the Canadian Heritage Department. Initially known as the National Film Commission, it was created by an act of Parliament in 1939. Its mandate, as set forth in the National Film Act, 1950, is “to produce and distribute and to promote the production and distribution of films designed to interpret Canada to Canadians and to other nations.”

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National Film Board of Canada
  • Sad Song of Yellow Skin

    Directed by Michael Rubbo • Documentary • 1971 • 58 minutes

    A film about the people of Saigon as seen through the experiences of three young American journalists who, in 1970, explored in their own way the consequences of war and of the American presence. It is not a film about the Vietnam war, ...

  • Churchill's Island

    Directed by Stuart Legg • Documentary • With Lorne Greene • 1941 • 22 minutes

    Winner of the first Oscar for Best Documentary Short Subject! It presents the strategy of the Battle of Britain, showing with penetrating clarity the relationships between the various forces made up the island's defens...

  • King of the Hill

    Directed by William Canning, Donald Brittain • Documentary • 1974 • 56 minutes

    Spring 1972. The Chicago Cubs are poised to win the National League's Pennant race, lead by their star pitcher, a Black Canadian named Ferguson Jenkins, who was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1991. Out of ...

  • City of Gold

    Directed by Colin Low, Wolf Koenig • Documentary • 1957 • 21 minutes

    A vivid recollection of the Klondike gold rush at its frenzied height, City of Gold uses a collage of still photographs to compare Dawson City of the gold rush, when the gold from its river beds flowed freely through the stores...

  • Glenn Gould: Off the Record

    Directed by Roman Kroiter, Wolf Koening • Documentary • 1959 • 29 minutes

    Canadian concert pianist Glenn Gould enjoys a respite at his lakeside cottage. It is an aspect of Gould previously known only to the collie pacing beside him through the woods, the fishermen resting their oars to hear his ...

  • Glenn Gould: On the Record

    Directed by Roman Kroiter, Wolf Koening • Documentary • 1959 • 29 minutes

    Glenn Gould, renowned Canadian concert pianist, in New York--kidding the cab driver, bantering with sound engineers at Columbia Records; and then, alone with the piano, fastidiously recording Bach's Italian Concerto.

  • How to Build an Igloo

    Directed by Douglas Wilkinson • Documentary • 1949 • 10 minutes

    A demonstration of igloo-building in Canada's Far North, showing how the site is selected and how blocks of snow are used to make a snug shelter in only an hour and a half. As the camera follows each stage, the commentary explains t...

  • Ladies and Gentlemen... Mr Leonard Cohen

    Directed by Donald Brittain, Don Owen • Documentary • 1965 • 44 minutes

    Produced in 1965, this is an informal portrait of the Montreal poet, novelist and songwriter, Leonard Cohen. He is seen reading his poetry to a rapt audience and also alone, or relaxing with family and friends.

  • Lonely Boy

    Directed by Wolf Koening, Roman Kroiter • Documentary • 1962 • 26 minutes

    The story of popular singer Paul Anka. He rose from obscurity to become the idol of millions of adolescent fans around the world. This film takes a candid look at both sides of the footlights as well as the promotion indus...

  • Waiting for Fidel

    Directed by Michael Rubbo • Documentary • 1974 • 57 minutes

    Inside Fidel Castro's Cuba with a movie-making threesome whose hope is that Fidel himself will star in their film. The filmmakers are Joseph Smallwood, former Newfoundland premier, Geoff Stirling, radio and televison owner, and Michael ...

  • Royal Journey

    Directed by David Bairstow • Documentary • 1951 • 54 minutes

    A documentary account of the five-week visit of Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh to Canada and the United States in the fall of 1951 includes the pageantry of Québec City; the National War Memorial in Ottawa; the Trenton Ai...

  • Kate and Anna McGarrigle

    Directed by Caroline Leaf • Documentary • 1981 • 27 minutes

    Quebec-born singing sisters Kate and Anna McGarrigle enjoy international acclaim--for their inimitable style, their talent as songwriters and especially for their unassuming, informal selves! With sister Jane as business manager, Kate a...

  • Balakrishna

    Directed by Colin MacKenzie & Aparna Kapur • Animation • 2019 • 15 minutes

    When an extraordinary new resident – Balakrishna, an Indian elephant – arrived in the town of East River, Nova Scotia, in 1967, no one was more in awe of the creature than young Winton Cook, who became inseparable from hi...

  • Bam

    Directed by Howie Shia • Animation • 2015 • 7 minutes

    A modern adaptation of the myth of Hercules, BAM tells the story of a young boxer struggling to negotiate between his shy, bookish nature and a divinely violent temper. Where does this rage come from? Is it psychological or environmental - or...

  • The Basketball Game

    Directed by Hart Snider • Animation • 2011 • 5 minutes

    In 1983, nine-year-old Hart attends Jewish summer camp for the first time, while in a nearby Alberta town a social studies teacher makes headlines after it's discovered he's been teaching anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial. In the aftermath,...

  • Blood Manifesto

    Directed by Theodore Ushev • Animation • 2014 • 2 minutes

    A sharp knife cuts the hand of filmmaker Theodore Ushev. A thin stream of his blood comes to life on a white page.All over the world, idealist revolutionaries shed their blood to denounce injustices. Yet blood is also the very symbol of l...

  • CMYK

    Directed by Marv Newland • Animation • 2011 • 7 minutes

    CMYK is a dizzying celebration of sound, colour and movement. Director Marv Newland and animator Kunal Sen meticulously assembled multitudes of CMYK symbols, pulled off flaps of common printed materials like cereal boxes. Freed from their w...

  • Gloria Victoria

    Directed by Theodore Ushev • Animation • 2012 • 7 minutes

    Third part of a trilogy on the relationship between art and power, Gloria Victoria is the work of a gifted filmmaker and visual artist, a virtuoso of collage and recycling that summons surrealism as much as Dracula, Cubists of the horror ...

  • The Great Malaise

    Directed by Catherine Lepage • Animation • 2019 • 5 minutes

    In the voiceover for this animated short, a young woman attempts to describe herself, casting her life in the ideal light that society expects. The film’s imagery, however, tells a different story, poignantly illustrating the intense an...

  • Hollow Land

    Directed by Michelle Kranot & Uri Kranot • Animation • 2013 • 14 minutes

    Searchlights sweep the silent towers. Deep inside one of the buildings, a hand extends through a pipe and appears in a neighbouring apartment, where Solomon is struggling to fix the plumbing. He stares at the hand, then rea...

  • I Don't Feel Anything Anymore

    Directed by Noémie Marsily & Carl Roosens • Animation • 2016 • 9 minutes

    He’s a magician. She’s a firefighter. Isolating themselves from the chaos of a world in turmoil, the two lovers live in a crane basket high in the sky, where they go about their daily business. Their challenge: keep their h...

  • I Like Girls

    Directed by Diane Obomsawin • Animation • 2016 • 8 minutes

    First love is an intoxicating experience, but with it can come excruciating awkwardness, unrequited emotions, and confusing issues of identity. In her trademark playful style, Quebec cartoonist and animator Diane Obomsawin, a.k.a. Obom, ...

  • Jutra

    Directed by Marie-Josée Saint-Pierre • Animation • 2014 • 13 minutes

    With an ingenious assembly of archival footage and animated sequences, Marie-Josée Saint-Pierre brings us a clever and astute cinephile portrait of Claude Jutra, the director of Mon Oncle Antoine. Continuing the undertaking she...

  • Mary & Myself

    Directed by Sam Decoste • Animation • 2014 • 7 minutes

    Mary & Myself is a story within a story, a meta-narrative about two Chinese Canadian women making their theatrical debut playing "comfort women" in The Vagina Monologues.

    Fusing activism and performance, this short animated documentary hono...