(2017) HD, 59 min, Documentary
In the Waves film award winning fog ocean

“In the Waves has a delicate, tranquil beauty, absorbing all of Cape Breton’s natural splendour into its fluid montage.” – Cinema Scope

“An intimate transmission of wisdom between filmmaker, subject and all those who seek solace from mortality in the natural world.” – Nonfics

“Jacquelyn Mills’ portrait of her grandmother is a ruminative commentary on family legacy and the passing of time.” – The ARTery

“Life / Dreamlife / Afterlife : being a one-person crew, living in the present moment, making your grandmother your star.” – TIFF Blog

grandmother looking at sky death


In the Waves is an expressive documentary that depicts the life of Joan Mills in her aging coastal village. Following the death of her sister, Joan finds herself confronted by the fragility of life as she searches for meaning in the natural world around her. Crafted by Joan’s granddaughter, this film is an intergenerational love-letter, an ebb and flow between dream and reality, past and present, a glimpse of childhood and an encounter with the end of life.

Hand in ocean cape seaweed breton


2017 Visions du Réel World Premiere
2017 Camden International Film Festival
2017 Atlantic International Film Festival Best Feature Documentary, Best Editor
2017 Vancouver International Film Festival Future//Present
2017 New Hampshire International Film Festival Grand Jury Prize
2017 Pravo Ljudski Film Festival, Sarajevo
2017 Montréal International Documentary Festival Best Medium Length Film
2018 Rendez-vous du cinema québecois
2018 TIFF Cinemathèque Theatrical Release
2018 Northwest Film Forum Seattle Film Festival
2018 Halifax Independent Film Festival


Director, DOP, Editor, Sound Designer, Producer Jacquelyn Mills
Co-Produced by Aonan Yang, Andreas Mendritzki, Nguyen-Anh Nguyen
With Joan Mills

Supported by Canada Arts Council
Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec