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REEL MTL: Community Supported Film Studies Programs Launch at Le Cinéclub and The Miskatonic Institute for Horror Studies

REEL MTL: Community Supported Film Studies Programs Launch at Le Cinéclub and The Miskatonic Institute for Horror Studies

During my years at McGill, I decided to stray from studying the sciences and take my love of cinema more seriously: I turned my mind towards Cultural Studies and spent my early twenties relishing in Canadian cinema, slasher films, the French New Wave, Godard’s wonderfully bizarre oeuvre, and the philosophy of film.

35mm boxes and Pamela Filion

It’s been three years since I decided to take my career down a different path, turning towards my other major in anthropology. Right after obtaining my fancy arts degree and wanting nothing to do with, well, anything anymore, I began looking for alternatives to my film studies courses and Bazin quoting peer community. I was looking to re-ignite my passion for the screen; from the cerebral to the heart and back.

Thus, I began volunteering for film festivals, but found myself wanting and in need of more starch in my film diet. Since I’d turned to workshops and community-based learning in the other areas of my life, I decided to do the same for the reel arts.

This approach (which I’ve dubbed community-supported film studies) has been more than fulfilling. Looking towards cinephile communities has led me to the following  two (affordable and community driven) Montreal groups that provide an alternative to film studies outside of formal academic settings:

Le Cinéclub: The Film Society

After volunteering at the Fantasia Film Festival in 2011, I discovered Le Cinéclub: The Film Society, coordinated by director, projectionist and film collector Phillipe Spurrel. Their mandate is to provide the experience of watching motion pictures in their original medium: film (35mm, 16mm). Films screened come from the private collection of dedicated collectors, pooled together and stored at the Cineclubs archive, which I had the pleasure of helping build (picture above). With a collection ranging from the 1890s to the 1990s, Le Cinéclub presents local works, experimental films, classics, and even Hollywood blockbusters. Such titles include Singin’ in the Rain, The Wages of Fear, Vertigo, Touch of Evil, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, La Dolce Vita, Repulsion, Taxi Driver, Nosferatu, and more.

Over the twenty something years that the Cinéclub has been around, it has taken up residence at various venues. Presently, with the support of the Mel Hoppeinheim School of Cinema, Le Cinéclub is located downtown on the Concordia Campus, alternating between two screening rooms. Special events feature live musicians and guest speakers, and prices are affordable (6$ for students and 8$ regular entry).


Le Cinéclub: Film Society Series Fall 2013

Sun. Sept. 29     

Cinéma VA-114, 1395 René Levèsque O.


(1973, USA,  105  min.) Clint  Eastwood


Fri. Oct. 4 & Sat. Oct 5  

W.P.United Church  4695 deMaisonneuve W. (Vendôme metro)


(1925, USA, 96 min.) Rupert Julian. Starring Lon Chaney sr.


Sun. Oct. 13          

Cinéma VA-114, 1395 René Levèsque O.

MAN ON THE ROOF (Mannen på taket)

(1976, Sweden,  110 min.) Bo Widerberg


Sun. Oct. 27   

Cinéma VA-114, 1395 René Levèsque O.

WAR OF THE WORLDS : Welles & Wells

(1967 + 1975, USA, 120 min.)


Sun. Nov. 10 

Cinéma VA-114, 1395 René Levèsque O.

THE WAR HUNT + A Time Out Of War

(1962, USA, 83 min.) Denis Sanders


Sun. Nov. 24                                           

Cinéma J.A. deSève, 1400 deMaisonneuve O.


(1988, USA, 132 min.)  John McTiernan


Sun. Dec. 8  

Cinéma VA-114, 1395 René Levèsque O.


(1938, USA, 102  min.) Howard Hawks


The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies


Through meeting with fellow horror film lovers,  I’ve been led towards The Miskatonic Film Institute, founded by Kier La Janisse (picture below) in 2010. Janisse is the author of Psychotic House of Women and currently curates “FILM POP”, part of the POP Montreal Festival).

The Miskatonic was originally housed at the Blue Sunshine Psychotronic Film Centre (2010-2012). These days, it is taking up residence at the Peut-être Vintage Microcinema in the Mile-end neighbourhood. Although The Miskatonic more closely resembles traditional film studies courses, that shouldn’t deter you. The mandate of the institute remains community-based, and it hosts speakers from across the horror film industry; writers, directors, scholars, and programmers. Some guest names include Karen Herland, Kier-La Janisse Carl Sedeholm, Daniel Bird, and Mario Degiglio-Bellemare.


Miskatonic Fall 2013 Line Up


Homesick Horror – September 17th & 24th 

Tue. Sep. 17, 2013 – Tue. Sep. 24, 2013 – 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Peut-être Vintage Microcinema


Shock and Draw: Horror Comics – October 1st 

Tue. Oct. 1, 2013 – 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Peut-être Vintage Microcinema


The Elephant Man in the Room – October 15th, 22nd and 29th

Tue. Oct. 15, 2013 – Tue. Oct. 29, 2013 – 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Peut-être Vintage Microcinema


Transformations et métamorphoses: l’effet spécial et le cinéma d’horreur – le 12, 19 & 26 Novembre 

Tue. Nov. 12, 2013 – Tue. Nov. 26, 2013 – 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Peut-être Vintage Microcinema


The Big, the Bad and the Impossible: The Physics of Movie Monsters – December 10th 

Tue. Dec. 10, 2013 – 12:00 am

Peut-être Vintage Microcinema


Yuletide Terror! 

Tue. Dec. 17, 2013 – 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Peut-être Vintage Microcinema



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