CUFF 2022 Poster Cropped

19th Calgary Underground Film Festival Announces Full Lineup

The 19th Calgary Underground Film Festival (CUFF) is just around the corner, and today the festival dropped some major news guaranteed to put smiles on movie lovers’ faces.

CUFF 2022 takes place from April 21 – May 1, 2022. The first eight days (April 21-28) will be held at Globe Cinema, followed by three days of online viewing (April 29 – May 1), with a selection of films from the festival available to stream on-demand across Alberta. We’ve got the festival’s entire lineup posted below. And the cherry on top? This year’s event “will be an in-person celebration of film for the first time in three years.”

The festival kicks off with CUFF alumnus Riley Stearns’ (THE ART OF SELF-DEFENSE) existential sci-fi thriller Dual starring Karen Gillan and Aaron Paul. Stearns will be in attendance for Dual’s Canadian premiere, and opening night tickets include admission to a post-screening reception.

CUFF 2022 Lineup


48-HOUR MOVIE MAKING CHALLENGE: The 48-Hour Movie Making Challenge at CUFF is back. Presented in partnership with NUTV, join us for the completed shorts showcase!

A LIFE ON THE FARM (Director Oscar Harding): A documentary film from rural England about a filmmaking farmer and the inspiring legacy of his long-lost home movies executive produced by Joe Pickett and Nick Prueher from The Found Footage Festival.

A NIGHT OF KNOWING NOTHING (Director Payal Kapadia): A dreamlike black and white love story about two students in India, and the political system that they are caught up in. Winner of the Golden Eye Prize for Best Documentary at the Director’s Fortnight Cannes 2021.

A WICKED EDEN (Director Naddine Madell): A peek into the real and virtual dungeons of women in the niche community of online fetish porn creators. Local documentary

AFTER BLUE (DIRTY PARADISE) (Director Bertrand Mandico): A hairdresser and her teenage daughter hunt a notorious killer in this erotic sci-fi acid western from cult iconoclast Bertrand Mandico, which has picked up multiple awards on the festival circuit, including jury awards at the Locarno International Film Festival, Sitges, and Fantastic Fest.


BEYOND THE WASTELAND (Director Eddie Beyrouthy): A documentary featuring fans from around the world who go to extraordinary lengths in the name of George Miller’s MAD MAX.

DAWN BREAKS BEHIND THE EYES (Director Kevin Kopacka): A couple spend eternity in a castle until their reality starts to shift. A love letter to the Gothic horror films of the ‘60s and ‘70s, that’s one wild trip.

DOWN WITH THE KING (Director Diego Ongaro): A famous rapper disillusioned with the music industry and the pressures of being a celebrity, leaves the city and his career behind to find himself in a small-town farming community.

DUAL (Director Riley Stearns): Opening Night Film! The satirical, science-fiction thriller from CUFF alumnus Riley Stearns (2019 Secret Screening Selection THE ART OF SELF-DEFENSE) centres on a woman who opts for a cloning procedure after she receives a terminal diagnosis and is court- martialled to a dual to the death when she starts to recover.


FREAKSCENE: THE STORY OF DINOSAUR JR (Director Philipp Reichenheim): An homage of one of the most influential bands on the American East Coast, which inspired and influenced the alternative rock scene of the ’90s.

FRIENDLY LOCAL GAME STORE (Director Garry Snow): The unlikely story of the world’s largest game store – The Sentry Box – located in Calgary. Local Documentary

GATLOPP (Director Alberto Belli): After one too many, four friends decide to play a drinking game, but they soon realize that this is no ordinary game, when it’s revealed that if they don’t group together and face their inner demons, they will be forced to play for eternity.

GETTING IT BACK: THE STORY OF CYMANDE (Director Tim Mackenzie-Smith): Cymande are the unsung heroes of hip hop, disco and a host of other genres, whose message of peace, love and funk sailed beyond Britain’s shores and helped shape music for five decades.


GIRL PICTURE (Director Alli Haapasalo): A Finnish coming of age story about three teens on the cusp of womanhood, set over three consecutive Fridays. Winner of the World Cinema Audience Award – Dramatic at Sundance Film Festival 2022.

HOMEBOUND (Director Sebastian Godwin): Nothing is as it seems when a woman visits her fiancé’s family with chilling results. A trip to the countryside becomes far from idyllic in this twisted psychological thriller.

HONEYCOMB (Director Avalon Fast): A group of young girls move to the woods, leaving everything they know behind, in this Canadian breakout indie horror.

JANE BY CHARLOTTE (Director Charlotte Gainsbourg): Actress Charlotte Gainsbourg turns the lens on her mother, the iconic singer and actress Jane Birkin, in Gainsbourg’s directorial debut.


LIVE SCRIPT READING: HUSKS: Join a cast of actors for a free live script reading of the local horror-comedy HUSKS from CUFF alumnus (2019 Audience Award Winner HARPOON) Rob Grant.

LUZIFER (Director Peter Brunner): Inspired by the true story of an exorcism, LUZIFER looks at the psyché of a child raised by his mother on the fringes of society.

PIGGY (Director Carlota Pereda): Adolescence can be brutal. An expanded version of a short by the same name, the Spanish thriller PIGGY was a standout at Sundance Film Festival’s 2022 Midnight Section. Read That Shelf’s review here.

RETROGRADE (Director Adrian Murray): A minor traffic citation spirals into an all-consuming obsession for a neurotic young woman. Grand Jury Mention, Slamdance 2022.

RHYMES FOR YOUNG GHOULS – NATIONAL CANADIAN FILM DAY FREE SCREENING (Director Jeff Barnaby): This year’s free National Canadian Film Day screening is the 2013 indie breakout RHYMES FOR YOUNG GHOULS (2013), the Indigenous focused debut of writer-director Jeff Barnaby. (taking place at Canyon Meadows Cinema)

SALOUM (Director Jean Luc Herbulot). In Jean Luc Herbulot’s cool and kinetic genre-shifting supernatural thriller, a legendary trio of on-the-run mercenaries carrying a stolen gold bounty and a kidnapped drug lord take refuge in a remote and mystical area of Senegal, where dark ancestral forces unleash hell on them all. World Premiere, TIFF Midnight Madness 2021. Read That Shelf’s review here.

SATURDAY MORNING ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT-CEREAL CARTOON PARTY!: In this all-new program, you’ll see both faves and obscurities spanning the ’50s through the ’90s, all punctuated with vintage commercials, PSAs and station IDs! Jammies Encouraged!

SECRET SCREENING: Settle in and enjoy the surprise! The film will not be revealed until showtime.

SHORTS PACKAGE – A PACK OF JOKERS: A collection of shorts showcasing offbeat humour.

SHORTS PACKAGE – HIDEOUS HAUNTS: These dark and creepy shorts will send a shiver down your spine.

SHORTS PACKAGE – PUSHING THROUGH: Unique problems call for unconventional solutions in this mixture of dramatic stories.

SLASH/BACK (Director Nyla Innuksuk): In a remote Arctic community, a group of Inuit girls fight off an alien invasion, all while trying to make it to the coolest party in town. This screening is FREE for youth 14 and under!

STRAIGHTEN UP AND FLY RIGHT (Director Kristen Abate and Steven Tanenbaum): In a funk, Kristen, a physically disabled New York woman, walks dogs for a living but dreams of being a writer. When her life starts to unravel, she must make a choice to fall apart or straighten up.

SUNDOWN (Director Michel Franco): When a distant emergency disrupts a vacation in Acapulco, simmering tensions rise to the fore between scions of a wealthy British family. Starring Tim Rothand Charlotte Gainsbourg.

THE CIVIL DEAD (Director Clay Tatum): A misanthropic struggling photographer just wants to watch TV and eat candy while his wife is out of town, but when a desperate old pal resurfaces, his plans are thwarted, with spooky consequences in this heartfelt indie-horror-buddy-comedy.

THE RIGHTEOUS (Director Mark O’Brien): A burdened man feels the wrath of a vengeful God after he is visited by a mysterious stranger in this Newfoundland-set psychological horror.

TRAVESTI ODYSSEY (Director Nicolas Videla): A raw look at the last performance of the queer radical Cabaret Travesía Travesti, which coincides with the social outburst in Chile in 2019.

UNDERDOG (Director Tommy Hyde): A documentary about a hardscrabble Vermont farmer who risks losing the only home he’s ever known to chase his dreams of dog mushing in Alaska.

WE MET IN VIRTUAL REALITY (Director Joe Hunting): Filmed entirely inside the world of VR, this vérité documentary captures the excitement and surprising intimacy of a burgeoning cultural movement, demonstrating the power of online connection in an isolated world. Read That Shelf’s review here.

WHAT JOSIAH SAW (Director Vincent Grashaw): A family with buried secrets reunite at a farmhouse after two decades to pay for their past sins. Official Selection, Fantasia, 2021.

WILD MEN (Director Thomas Daneskov): A razor-sharp and original Scandinavian black comedy which tackles the timely issue of modern masculinity.