The Frida Cinema

Orange County's Year-Round Film Festival


The Twentieth Century

November 20th – December 17th

“Grade: A.  Rankin’s treatment, combining Super-8 and 16-mm film, tinting, animation, puppets, cross-dressing performances, and theatrical sets, is a pyrotechnical tribute to a famously charisma-free bachelor politician.” – Original Sin

5/5. This rapturously surreal romp through fascism, propaganda, and the perils of love delights in its arch embrace of retro-futuristic artifice and vintage melodrama.” – Killer Movie Reviews

A 2019 Toronto International Film Festival premiere, writer-director Matthew Rankin’s The Twentieth Century is an uproariously hilarious, dizzyingly stylish, and wholly original fictionalized telling of the rise of Mackenzie King, the longest-serving Prime Minister in Canadian history.

Toronto, 1899. Aspiring young politician Mackenzie King (Dan Beirne) dreams of becoming the Prime Minister of Canada. But his romantic vacillation between a British soldier and a French nurse, exacerbated by a fetishistic obsession, may well bring about his downfall. In his quest for power, King must gratify the expectations of his imperious Mother, the hawkish fantasies of a war-mongering Governor-General, and the utopian idealism of a Québécois mystic before facing one, final test of leadership. Culminating in an epic battle between good and evil, King learns that disappointment may be the defining characteristic of the twentieth century!

Directed by Matthew Rankin | 2019 | 90 minutes | Not Rated | Canada | English

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