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THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL: OCTOBER 28 TO NOVEMBER 3

At the centre of the week ahead is Montreal’s favourite holiday: Halloween! Some have futilely argued with me that Halloween isn’t actually a holiday; they are wrong. Just like any other holiday worth its salt, Halloween has traditional costumes (witches, the living dead, sexy kitties), special dishes (candy), and time-honoured rituals (treat or treating, dance parties, making out with masked strangers). And this week, Halloween is celebrated from Friday night to Monday night! And in between, catch some live music, theatre, dance, a new movie and life-altering art…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL: OCTOBER 21-28

No doubt about it, it’s fall now – the north winds blow, the leaves fall, the days grow shorter. Which also means Montreal nights are longer, and what better excuse to eat, drink and be merry well into the wee hours. Lovers of live music will adore this week in Montreal, as will lovers of film, as one film festival comes to an end and another begins. Montreal stages brace for drama, comedy, politics and the stomping of hundreds of horses hooves (seriously!). Art, poetry and spoken word round out the busy week with heady, ready made-in-Montreal creative stuff..

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL: OCTOBER 14-20

As Montrealers gear up for our favourite non-holiday holiday, Halloween, our imaginations begin to run a little wilder than usual – and so do we. All that energy has to go somewhere – maybe that’s why there’s such a variety of creative, rebellious things to do this week. A film festival that turns mainstream on its head, a rebel-yelling ska festival, experimental dance, avant-garde art and spoken-word performances, old and new rock n’ roll…

FREE THINGS IN MONTREAL: OCTOBER

As the warm weather truly wanes here in Montreal, our heralded free outdoor activities are slowly replaced by free indoor activities – so dress for both this October. Indoors and out, there’s much to see and hear: modern art, interactive dance, jazz, movies and more.

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (SEPTEMBER 15-22)

With summer behind us, we can now move on to more serious things. Like pop music festivals, eating hamburgers, singing karaoke classics and high-fiving extreme skiers. That’s just how Montreal rolls. But along with all that fun – all of which is actually happening in organized-event form this week – we’ve got thought-provoking drama and dance on more than a few stages, new mind-bending art, some very short films and, as always, rock n’ roll…

CAFE DE FLORE BRINGS VANESSA PARADIS TO MONTREAL

Café de Flore is the eagerly awaited movie from celebrated Montreal director Jean-Marc Vallée. Vallée, director of C.R.A.Z.Y. (one of the best Montreal films ever made) and The Young Victoria starring Emily Blunt and Paul Bettany, is bringing his latest film to his hometown of Montreal for a premiere at our city’s most glamorous cinema, the Imperial. The red-carpet affair and the premiere party afterwards promises to be glam—the star of Café de Flore is French singer/actress/bombshell Vanessa Paradis, wife of Johnny Depp…

FILM POP: A UNIQUELY MUSICAL FILM FEST

In a city replete with film festivals, Film Pop, the little sister of Montreal mega music-festival Pop Montreal, is in a class all its own. The folks at Pop are allergic to the conventional, and this is evident in their film festival, which is nothing like other film festivals—more like a series of film “happenings” around town at the same time as all the other things that are happening at Pop time, only on screens.

POP MONTREAL: MORE THAN JUST MUSIC

Pop Montreal may primarily be about music – it’s hard to deny that fact, what with huge bands like Arcade Fire playing this year alongside soon-to-be-huge bands and bands who (say they) don’t care if they’re ever huge – but what makes the festival like no other is how well-rounded it is, you know, like some unwholesome, scholarship-getting kid genius who also slays on the drums. I say this because of Art Pop, Pop Symposium, Fashion Pop, Puces Pop and Film Pop – and this year Sports Pop!

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (AUGUST 25-SEPTEMBER 1)

While Montreal’s warm weather will continue well into late September, the beginning of September is nevertheless considered the end of summer, just as with most places in the northern hemisphere. But at least summer goes out with a bang here! The St-Laurent Street Fair sees to that, with the main shopping, wining and dining strip closed to cars and open to fun and carousing all weekend. Add to that a film festival, a burlesque festival and plenty of music and art to take the sting out of summer’s end…