What She Said/ Christine Bentley & Kate Wheeler
Never Steady, Never Still the stunning debut feature from writer-director Kathleen Hepburn stars the fearless Scottish actress, rural Canadian accent and all, Shirley Henderson, as a vulnerable wife and mother living in remote northern B.C. The vastness of the land around them means domestic tasks are challenging or impossible especially for her as she has severe Parkinson’s, which may be linked to a lifetime working in the paper mills. Her son is moody and difficult but adores his mother. He hooks up with a pregnant 17 year old as he questions his own sexuality. The doting husband (the mighty Nicholas Campbell) suffers a heart attack and dies while out fishing, leaving her to cope when she can barely lift a kettle. Henderson plays the role full bore with its unbelievably demanding physical work, even as her character is as gentle as a butterfly. The film doesn’t try to solve anything but instead paints a gripping and expressive picture –the film is simply unforgettable. It’s up for eight Canadian Screen Awards, and co-stars Théodore Pellerin, Mary Galloway, Lorne Cardinal and Hello Destroyer’s Jared Abrahamson.