Alex Ranarivelo [in person]
, 2016, USA, 101 minutes, Cast:
Sharon Stone, Dorian Brown [in person]
, Tommy Flanagan, Jason Lewis, Seth Coltan [in person]
Saturday, October 29 @ 6:15 pm
Stella Davis (Dorian Brown), a California Ranch Socialite, is thrown into a world of chaos when her husband dies unexpectedly and she discovers that they are in financial ruin. Her husband has secretly mortgaged their massive acreage, the Double Diamond Ranch, to keep them afloat and she has ninety days until the creditors will come calling. She must decide whether to address her adversity head on or quit and let the bank have the land that has been in her family’s name for four generations.
Attending: Ali Afshar [producer] & Christina Moore [writer]
Let's Dance to the Rhythm [Nachom-ia Kumpasar]
Alex graduated at the top of his class with a B.F.A in film directing from Art Center College of Design. His thesis film was a 35mm short film about street-racing called "The Last Race", based on his experiences as a street- racer. After college he continued to develop his writing and directing skills with 5 more short films in different genres, each playing in festivals and winning multiple "best short film" awards. He made his feature debut with a rough and tumble romantic comedy from a guy's perspective: “Alpha Males Experiment". It played at multiple festivals and placed in Best of Fest's top 10 comedies of 2009. Alex went back to his street-racing roots for his second feature "Born To Race", a teen action film centered around a father/son story. He followed it up with a sequel, "Born to Race: Fast Track" starring Brett Davern and Beau Mirchoff. In 2010, Alex also wrote a revenge-thriller called "The Girl With No Name", which won the Grand Prize at the Slamdance Screenwriting Competition. He was then hired to write the MMA sports drama "Mickey Kelley". He has just finished directing a slate of 5 films for ESX entertainment. These titles include "The Dog Lover” (James Remar, Lea Thompson), "American Wrestler: The Wizard” (Jon Voight, William Fichnter, George Kosturos), "Running Wild” (Sharon Stone), "Pray for Rain” (Jane Seymour) and “Dirt" (Kevin Dillion). Alex has been a fan of the action/thriller genre since he was 7 and saw Star Wars for the first time. Directors like Ridley and Tony Scott, John McTiernan and Michael Mann have influenced his work and continue to inspire him.
Bardroy Barretto, 2015, India, 150 minutes, Cast:
Vijay Maurya, Palomi Ghosh, Meenacshi Martins Prince Jacob, John D'Silva, Blasco Andrade, Shirley Coutinho
Sunday, October 30 @ 4:00 pm
The bitter sweet relationship between a young singer and her musician mentor set against the backdrop of the jazz clubs of Bombay and the musicians from Goa during the 60s. In the 1960s Lawry a young Goan musician playing in the nightclubs of Bombay, returns to Goa to find a singer for his band where he meets Dona. While Lawry moulds the impressionable young Dona into a talented singer, they fall deeply in love. The emotional roller coaster of a love story is destined to tragedy. The film weaves its lilting narrative through 20 timeless songs based on actual events this quasi-biographical film is a tribute to one of Goa’s greatest, yet barely acknowledged legacy - its musicians, who once upon a time set the jazz clubs of Bombay on fire and actually shaped the music of Bollywood cinema.
Let's Dance to the Rhythm [Nachom-ia Kumpasar] is a nostalgic musical tale set in the times these musicians lived and died in - unrecognized, unappreciated…and unsung.
Much like the Goan music that he is so passionate about, BardroyBarretto landed up on the shores of Bombay in search of a larger stage. Wide-eyed and curious about the power of cinema, he was mesmerized by the stories it could bring alive. Starting out in 1987 as an Asst. Cameraman, his innate inquisitiveness drew him into the editing room which soon became his own little comfort zone. From here he blossomed into one of the country’s best editors working withthe finest talent from advertising and short films. In 2002 he embarked on his journey as an ‘Ad film Director’ and by 2004 his boutique production house, Brown Skins, was a reputed banner in the demanding world of advertising film production. But it was his undying passion to create something worthy enough to display the richness of true Goan culture that led to this marvelous tribute to its musicians and their unsung contribution to the Indian film industry. Today Bardroy’s decade-old dream stands realized. And what we have is a moving saga of Goa’s epic love affair with her Music. A narrative that proudly defies the narrow label of football, fun and feni that is often pinned on the state.
Sean Garrity, 2015, Canada, 95 minutes, Cast:
Jonas Chernick, Joey King, Kevin Pollak, Emily Hampshire, Cle Bennett
Screening with: Rhapsody ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 8:30 pm
Jonah, an unemployed gambler, takes his estranged pot-smoking teenage daughter AURORA on a dangerous road trip to Churchill, Manitoba to show her the magnificent Northern Lights – before her vision disorder renders her completely blind. With a volatile bookie in hot pursuit, Jonah and Aurora are forced to finally confront each other, and their tragic pasts.
The press has referred to Sean Garrity’s work as “possessing a dark, twisted beauty” (Janet Smith, Georgia Strait) and has compared his work to that of David Cronenberg (Globe and Mail), Atom Egoyan (MacLean’s) and even Luis Buñuel (Steve Palopoli, San Jose Metro Active). His first feature film, INerTia, was awarded “Best First Feature” at the 2001 Toronto International Film Festival, and netted him “Best Director” at the 2001 Film Can Festival. The Globe & Mail named him one of three “Canadian Filmmakers to Watch” in 2002 and Northern Life announced, “Sean Garrity is the new wave of Canadian cinema.”
Khosro Masoumi, 2015, Iran, 80 minutes, Cast:
Elnaz Shakerdoost, Hadi Dibaji, Jamal Ejlali, Jamshid Jahanzadeh, Khayam Vaghar, Mehran Rajabi
Screening with: The Salt Man + Conte Oriental ~ Friday, October 28 @ 8:15 pm
Taboo is the story of a 67 years old Iranian landowner in North of Iran. In spite of having 3 legal wives he is pushing one of his workers -- who has a beautiful 24 years old daughter -- to force her into marrying him. The girl is a student in a university in Rasht (a city north of Iran) and is very active in social student activities in the university. At the same time, she is in love with one of her classmates who is an elementary teacher in a village near town. They force her to go through the marriage ceremony but she escapes and goes to the school that her lover is teaching. But he cannot keep her when the students discover she is there. He sends her to his small apartment in the city who he shares with two of his friends but the apartment is not safe so he sends her to a deserted ship that one of his friends uses to make illegal alcohol and wine. But the man and her father manage to find them for revenge….
Khsoro Masoumi, born on 1957 in Behshahr, Iran, studied cinema and television at the Dramatic Arts University. He began his career in 1985 with Free Cinema in Bandar Abbas and later in the early 80’s he began directing short and feature films. Masoumi directed his debut feature in 1986 titled The Encounter.
Filmography: Leaden Times (1986), Tradition of Killing Lovers (2004), Somewhere Far Away (2006), Wind Blows on the Meadow (2008), Bear (2012), Taboo (2015).
Pamela Yates, 2015, USA, 76 minutes, Cast:
Screening with: Ed & Pauline ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 2:00 pm
Documentary Director Pamela Yates met master cinematographer Haskell Wexler in Nicaragua in 1984 on the set of Wexler's film Latino, about U.S. intervention aimed at crushing the Sandinista revolution. He became Pamela's mentor and life-long friend and together they've explored what it means to be a committed documentary filmmaker. When Haskell asked Pamela to represent him this year at the Cinéma du Réel festival in Paris, which held a week-long retrospective of his largely unknown political documentaries, she filmed a conversation with him over several days as she prepared to go to Paris. The result unexpectedly became Rebel Citizen, a revelatory tour of Haskell’s political documentary work, in which the veteran artist and social justice activist shares his vision of what it truly means to be an engaged citizen.
Pamela Yates was born and raised in the Appalachian coal-mining region of Pennsylvania but ran away at the age of 16 to live in New York City. Yates is a co-founder of Skylight Pictures, a company dedicated to creating films and digital media tools that advance awareness of human rights and the quest for justice by implementing multi- year outreach campaigns designed to engage, educate and activate social change. Yates’ films have spanned the globe geographically, covering a wide spectrum of human experience. She directed When the Mountains Tremble (the prequel to Granito) about a revolutionary moment in Guatemala, that won the Special Jury Prize at the first Sundance Film Festival. She also directed a trilogy of films Living Broke in Boom Times, an inside look at homeless activists’ movement to end poverty. She was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in support of her current film, Granito. She is a member of The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. Yates is also the Executive Producer of the Academy Award Winning Witness to War, the Producer of the Emmy Award Winning Loss of Innocence, and the Overseas Press Club Award recipient for State of Fear.
Crooked & Narrow
Neal Dhand, 2015, USA, 90 minutes, Cast:
Brian Anthony Wilson, Lindsay Goranson, Khan Baykal, Jon Freda, Christopher J. Domig, Peter Mele
Screening with: Adila ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 9:15 pm
Amy Walsh returns to Philadelphia after 10 years to visit her ex-cop, current-con father and to join a stick-up crew. After a job gone wrong, Warren Mercer, the cop who put her dad in prison gets on her trail.
Neal Dhand is a writer, director, and producer. His 2012 directorial debut, Second-Story Man, premiered at Cinequest 21 and screened at festivals in Shanghai, Marbella, and around the US. His follow-up, the heist film Crooked & Narrow, will premiere at the Brooklyn Film Festival. He is currently in development on the sci-fi thrillers Zippers and The Lighthouse. Neal also teaches screenwriting, directing, and film history classes. He lives in south Philadelphia with Kat and Ike.
Constance Meyer, 2016, France, 15 minutes, Cast:
Gérard Depardieu, Guillaume Icloux, Arsène Romeo
Screening with: Borealis ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 8:30 pm
A lonely sixty-year old man lives in a small apartment on the top floor of a tower. Every day, a young woman entrusts her baby to him. A natural and unusual bond unites these two beings, one solid and sturdy, the other small and delicate.
Festivals: Locarno Film Festival, Chicago International Film Festival, Stockholm International Film Festival
Constance Meyer is a film director, photographer, and producer born in 1984. After graduating with an MA in History from the Sorbonne, Constance becomes an assistant to leading stage and film directors such as Marcial di Fonzo Bo, Luc Bondy, Claude Chabrol. In 2010, she moves to New York where she enters NYU’s graduate film program at the Tisch School of the Arts. In 2012, she writes and directs Frank-Etienne, a short film starring Gérard Depardieu and Marina Foïs. The film premiered at the 69th Venice International Film Festival, and was presented in more than 40 festivals. Back in Paris, she creates her production company Carmen Films and produces the short film A Ciambra by Jonas Carpignano, which received the Sony CineAlta Prize at the International Critics' Week in Cannes in 2014. In 2015 she is part of the Berlinale Talents. Rhapsody, her latest short film has been selected at the Locarno Film Festival and several other major international festivals in 2016.
Yerlan Nurmukhambetov, 2016, Kazakhstan, 81 minutes, Cast:
Rustem Zhanyamanov, Balnur Asyl, Nurzhan Zhumanov
Screening with: Fruit ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 10:15 pm
A hymn to the lives of ordinary people in which comedic and dramatic themes interweave until the final scenes. A story about a young married couple from the wondrous and extremely picturesque region of southern Kazakhstan. Against the backdrop of villagers going about their daily business, great love is born. The two young people, respecting the history and culture of their families and ancestors, decide to get married according to the local, centuries-old tradition. For this, it is necessary to steal the future bride… Eastern cinema with a great sense of humor.
Yerlan Nurmukhambetov, born in 1974 in Abai in southern Kazakhstan. In 2000 he graduated from the National Academy of Arts as a screenwriter. He made several movies while studying, which won recognition and prizes. He has been working at the Kazakhfilm Studio since 1997. 'Walnut Tree' is his latest film.
FREIGHTENED – The Real Price of Shipping
Filmography: 2015 Walnut Tree / 2011 The First Rains of Spring / 2011 The Hunter Boy / 2008 Overture / 2002 The Kidnapped Bride / 2001 In Paris / 2000 Friday / 1999 Sunday / 1999 Love and shoes / 1999 Pay to.
Denis Delestrac, 2016, Spain, 84 minutes
Screening with: Who Doesn't Have a Dark Side ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 12:00 pm
FREIGHTENED – The Real Price of Shipping, reveals in an audacious investigation the mechanics and perils of cargo shipping; an all-but-visible industry that relentlessly supplies 7 billion humans and holds the key to our economy, our environment and the very model of our civilization. 90% of the goods we consume in the West are manufactured in far-off lands and brought to us by ship. The cargo shipping industry is a key player in world economy and forms the basis of our very model of modern civilization; without it, it would be impossible to fulfill the ever-increasing demands of our societies. Yet the functioning and regulations of this business remain largely obscure to many, and its hidden costs affect us all. FREIGHTENED reveals in an audacious investigation the many faces of world-wide freight shipping and sheds light on the consequences of an all-but-visible industry.
Keep in Touch
After launching his career as a writer and photographer in the United States, DENIS DELESTRAC stepped into filmmaking in 2001 when he met legendary photographer Steve McCurry, later to become the subject ofThe Face of the Human Condition. This was the first segment of theNomads series that took the young director around the globe and forged his creative voice. In 2009, he teamed with executive producer Mark Achbar (Director of The Corporation) and signed Pax Americana. It received numerous accolades and led Denis to his next film Sand Wars (Gold Panda, Greenpeace Prize, Gemini Award), an epic eco-thriller unveiling a disturbing fact: sand is the most consumed resource on Earth after water, and the world’s beaches are disappearing. In the recent BankingNature (8 Awards, including the Greenpeace Prize 2016), he investigates how the same banks and institutions that provoked the 2008 meltdown are now seeing biodiversity and endangered species as the next financial Eldorado. His films unstitch the hidden mechanics of our society, ones that blatantly stare us in the face and yet we are completely oblivious to. The force with which Delestrac exposes controversial issues has sparked public debate and influenced political decision-making internationally, positioning him as one of the most influential investigative filmmakers this past decade. www.freightened.com
Sam Kretchmar, 2015, USA, 108 minutes, Cast:
Ryan Patrick Bachand, Gabbi McPhee, Michael Covino, Sarah Nealis
Friday, October 28 @ 2:00 pm
After a major crisis, a man attempts to track down his long-lost first love, only to discover that she was killed in a car accident many years prior. His online search leads him to her younger sister, an aspiring musician who bears a striking resemblance to the girl he used to love. Quickly becoming obsessed, he arranges a not-so-chance meeting and a relationship blossoms between the two before he has a chance to disclose his true identity. In his directorial debut, Chicago-native Sam Kretchmar (who also co-wrote and shot the film) paints an intimate portrait of a relationship based on deceit. Featuring original music and performances by singer-songwriter Gabbi McPhee, Keep in Touch is a film about love, family, and finding self-worth.
A Todo Color
Randy Valdes, 2015, Cuba, 86 minutes
Screening with: Body & Sound + State of Grace ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 2:00 pm
In the 90’s, Cuba was suffering a fierce economic, political and social crisis that drowned the country in misery, hunger and desperation. Being the protagonist that music has always been in Cuba, it offered not just an escape but a means of expression during the most oppressive times in the nation’s history. As a result, a new generation of talented musicians and songwriters arose, carrying the torch for a people desperately seeking freedom of expression.
Cultivating a passion for all aspects of filmmaking and video production, Randy Valdes has developed a promising career as a director of photography and director in Miami. His credits as Director of Photography vary from several feature documentaries including The U (ESPN’s 30 for 30 Series), Limelight (Tribeca Film Festival 2011), Square Grouper (SXSW 2011) and Spectrum of Hope (Sundance Now Doc Club 2016), as well as music videos for Sony Music and Universal Music Group and an array of commercial work. As a Director, Randy strives to tell stories that challenge and inspire viewers. He prides himself in being able to maximize today’s technology to build on filmmaking techniques that have stood the test of time and continue to evoke emotions in viewers. His background as a Director of Photography is evident in Randy’s work as a director, as he uses it to exploit the psychology of composition and lighting to develop a cinematic atmosphere that is true to the story. A Todo Color, is his directorial debut.
Faruk Hacıhafızoğlu, 2015, Turkey, 83 minutes, Cast:
Taha Tegin Özdemir Yakup, Özgür Kurtaal, Ömer Uluç
Screening with: The Stripes + Learning Alliance ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 4:15 pm
Winters are hard in eastern Turkey. There is snow, as far as the eye can see and barely a lump of coal to be found for heating, but plenty of soldiers on every corner. It is the 1980s and the effects of the military dictatorship are to be felt everywhere here. But Serhat, Gurbuzand Ibrahim do not seem to be bothered about any of that. During the school holidays they set off with their little wooden sleds through the cold to collect bits of coal from ash heaps for their scattered families. Left to themselves, they somehow get by and pass the time recounting again and again the plots of the few films they know. The authoritarian conditions in their country are as much a part of their existence as are the tricks they employ to survive each day. Faru kHacıhafızoğlu’s cinematic debut is a stylistically rigorous portrait of the time of the military dictatorship, seen through the eyes of these boys. Told in static shots and with a sparing use of music he describes his young protagonists’ unswerving sense of optimism. Their inseparable friendship and their courage are stronger than the cold and oppression.
Born in Kars, Turkey in 1965, he graduated in agricultural sciences at Akdeniz University in Antalya, Turkey in 1991 and then completed a BA in contemporary media practice at Westminster University in London in 2002. He has worked as a journalist, photographer, producer and director. Snow Pirates is his first film. Faruk Hacihafizoglu was born in Kars, Turkey in 1965. He finished primary-secondary and high school in Kars. He took his BSc degree on Agricultural Engineering at Akdeniz University in 1991, Royal Society of Art Diploma on Photography at University of Bristol in 1997, and BA degree on Contemporary Media Practices at Westminster University in 2002. He worked as a journalist, photographer, producer and director. Snow Pirates is his first future film.
Dodo Hunziker, 2015, Switzerland, 84 minutes, Cast:
Screening with: Maya ~ Friday, October 28 @ 4:15 pm
As a new form of peaceful protest, Tibetans are setting themselves on fire. Loten Namling - an exiled Tibetan and musician living in Switzerland - is deeply disturbed by such self-destructive action. He sets off from Europe to India, on a one-man mission to meet top politicians, experts and young radicals. He turns increasingly radical and is on the verge of violent protest. Finally, he ends up at the Office of the Dalai Lama in India seeking advice of the exiled Tibetan leader.
Dodo Hunziker is a filmmaker / producer based in Bern, Switzerland, and co-proprietor of the production company DokLab. After studying graphic design, he started editing videos, resulting in a passion for documentary filmmaking. After several years of learning by doing, Dodo studied film in Prague has been directing and producing films for TV and cinema since 2006.
A Pact with The Devil
Majid Khabazan, 2015, United Kingdom, 65 minutes, Cast:
George Galloway, Victoria Britain, David Cameron
Screening with: Chance ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 12:00 pm
In the summer of 2014 the world watched in shock as terrorists of Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) captured Mosul, Iraq’s second city, and took control of territory the size of Britain. The brutal approach of terrorist groups in Iraq and Syria was not new, however, the main reaction of the West came out when ISIS brutally beheaded American and British citizens in front of cameras. The British prime minister, David Cameron, denounced them as psychopaths, but he did not point out that Britain has a long history of involvement with such groups, and has been prepared to ally with them when it suits the interests of London.
Just months before they captured the world’s headlines ISIS and similar groups fighting in Syria had benefited from funding by key Western allies such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar and from weapon supplied by the United States and its allies to the Syrian rebels. This film tries to explore if the rise of hardine Islamist groups is an unprecedented development or, as it has been said by many authors, academics and journalists that there is a complex history of British collusion with groups remarkably similar to today’s ISIS.
Majid has been engaged in documentary, TV productions and news gathering since 1980. As well as directing and producing documentaries he has produced thousands of TV debate shows mostly factual in nature.
Zachary Shedd [in person]
, 2016, USA, 81 minutes, Cast:
David Call, Kelli Garner, Frank Mosley, Jennifer Stuckert, Peter Coyote, Jack Davenport
Screening with: Catch It ~ Friday, October 28 @ 6:15 pm
Two years after alcoholism and depression drove Avery Wells from his home and career, the San Francisco film editor finds himself back in the city- sobered up and coerced into finishing a cut of a new film – Americana. Avery relents and takes the job, due to his connection to the film’s star – his sister Kate - and the convincing of the film’s producer. And then, at the peak of re-found faith in his abilities, Avery’s sister Kate is murdered. Grief and relapse set in as Avery’s suspicion of conspiracy grows.
Zachary Shedd is a San Francisco native and graduate of Tisch Film at New York University. His work as a producer includes HIDE YOUR SMILING FACES, directed by Daniel Patrick Carbone, which was a 2013 selection of US in Progress and premiered at the 2013 Berlinale and The TriBeCa Film Festival. His other credits include producing A LITTLE CLOSER, directed by Matthew Petock, which premiered at the Rotterdam Film Festival, and RABBIT, directed by R. Alverson, which is currently in post-production. His latest film and first feature directorial effort AMERICANA was selected during preproduction for the IFP/No Boarders program in 2013. His work with fellow filmmakers Carbone and Petock under the Brooklyn film collective FLIES includes commercial content for Google, Scholastic, Kumon Learning Centers and The New York City Ballet. He currently lives in Brooklyn, NY.
League of Exotique Dancers
Rama Rau, UK/USA, 2015, 87 minutes, Cast:
Judith Stein, Holiday O’Hara [in person]
Screening with: Elders ~ Friday, October 28 @ 10:15 pm
With a blast of brassy jazz and a spin through the glitz of modern Las Vegas, award-winning director Rama Rau’s documentary League of Exotique Dancers sets the stage for a provocative and eye-opening “backstage tour” of the golden age of Burlesque through the colorful lives of unforgettable women who made it glitter.
Illuminated by well-known and rare, never-before-seen, archival material and accentuated by a soundtrack and original music that captures the mood of the era, League of Exotique Dancers is all about its characters. Intimate interviews—held in homes and former haunts, filled with humour and heartbreak—reveal what keeps these formers stars busy today: driving a hearse, running marathons, designing flannel nightgowns, a hypnotherapy practice . . . they’re still full of surprises!
Rama Rau trained in films on one of the largest film sets in Mumbai, India. Her passion is to make films that are cross-cultural and examine “the extraordinariness of ordinary lives”. Rama’s short film Aftermath, about the horror of the terrorist attack in Mumbai, premiered at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival’s Court Metrages. Her feature documentary The Market (2010), a never-seen-before journey into the dangerous underworld of illegal international organ trade, premiered at IDFA, was nominated for two Canadian Screen Awards and won prizes in Germany and China. Rama’s other films include My Life with Me, A Day in the Life of Vij’s and Losing My Religion. Her debut film, Fingers of Fire, premiered at the 2006 New York International Film Festival. Rama has been awarded the Hot Docs Don Haig Award, the Stuttgart Indian Film Festival Best Documentary Director Award, Sichuan TV Festival’s Golden Panda for Best Director, the Tom Shoebridge Screenwriting Award, “Filmmaker of the Year” Award by the Toronto Business Forum and she was named a Quebecor Fellow of DOC, Toronto. She serves on the board of the Documentary Organization of Canada.
Between the Lines
Emmanuelle Remy, Christelle Alion, Tom Casacoli, Nolwenn Eve, Lorenn Le Bec, 2015, France, 5 minutes
Screening with: Indivisible + The Silence ~ Friday, October 28 @ 12:00 pm
The Salt Man
In the morning commute, a romantic relationship blossoms between two strangers when they realize their trains always stops next to one another at the same spot every day, but only for a few seconds.
Sajad Moosavi, 2015, Iran, 15 minutes, Cast:
Majid Mirebrahimi-negin Davoodi
Screening with: Taboo + Conte Oriental ~ Friday, October 28 @ 8:15 pm
Being left unsupported, Dr. Sa'id 'Aram, a genius artist, is obliged to work in a salt mine with his six-year-old girl ... The story begins when he receives statuettes from various festivals, displaying his creativity. Using a symbolic language, this artistic film tries to present new ideas to the audience, and to make the audience contemplate. Family, children, daughter, genius, human rights, nature, and life, are the themes of this film, which is proper for all classes. This film is produced in a course of two years, using the best cinematic equipment, and despite all existing limitations.
Sajad Moosavi was born in 1990 in Zanjan, Iran. He graduated in Cinema Direction with bachelor’s degree at Soore University of Tehran in 2010 (registered as Brilliant Talent). He received an international certification for DIF training from the international festival of Improving Digital Camera Training, Tehran, 2012. He has completed a specialized course of montage at the cinema institution of Darul-Fonun, 2012.
Filmography: From Dark Alleys, No One Knows About the Winter, Chance, A Sigh in the Cage), Gutty.
Paul Bar, Marion Demaret, Nadège Forner, Pierre-Baptiste Marty, Julien Robyn, 2015, France, 5 minutes, Animation
Screening with: Catch It ~ Friday, October 28 @ 6:15 pm
A group of meerkats take care of their beloved and unique fruit but a vulture will disturb their peace of mind.
Hilary Linder, 2016, USA, 78 minutes
Screening with: The Silence + Between Lines ~ Friday, October 28 @ 12:00 pm
Indivisible is a high-definition, feature-length documentary film about the real people at the heart of our nation’s immigration debate. Renata, Evelyn, and Antonio were young children when their parents brought them to the U.S. in search of a better life; they were teenagers when their mothers, fathers, and siblings were deported. Today, they are known as Dreamers. Indivisible takes place at a pivotal moment in their lives, as they fight for a pathway to citizenship and a chance to be reunited with their loved ones. Frustrated with the stalled legislative process, the trio take matters into their own hands and petition for a special waiver that would allow them to leave the U.S to visit their families—and legally return. With the future of immigration reform uncertain, the three do not know if their trips are a once in a lifetime experience, or the beginning of true family reunification.
Hilary Linder combines her knowledge in the fields of international development and humanitarian relief with her passion for non-fiction storytelling as the director and producer of Indivisible. Hilary is the founder and president of Kudzu Films, a production company dedicated to spreading social justice through film. Recently, Hilary monitored humanitarian emergencies for USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance and served as a Programs Manager at the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund, where she managed projects aimed at promoting job growth and smart, sustainable economic development. Hilary also has established education scholarships for children in Zimbabwe and Tanzania and conducted independent HIV/AIDS research in Rwanda.Hilary holds a B.A. in Political Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a M.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University.
Paul Zehrer [in person], 2016, USA, 15 minutes, Cast:
Sallie Harrison, Randall Martin, Chloe Pollock, Stacey Bowen, Princess Nonie Hall, Lily Ehmann
Screening with: Sonoma Filmmakers ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 7:15 pm
“Being Seen” explores the poorly understood subculture of people living with "developmental disabilities." These individuals' candid and articulate self-awareness quickly shatter preconceptions of who they are and how they think about themselves and the world — leaving us with existential questions about the meaning of "disabled" and "normal”. Rather than defining themselves by their diagnosis, individuals (young and old) strive to create meaning, meet adversity, and dream of their futures. Bay Area filmmakers, Paul Zehrer and ChikaraMotomura, spent over three years following individuals living with developmental disabilities throughout the Bay Area.
Producer/Director, Paul Zehrer is an award-winning filmmaker in narrative and documentary films, television and commercials, earning nominations for an Independent Spirit Award, the Sundance Grand Jury Prize and an Emmy. Paul made his directorial debut with the critically acclaimed feature, Blessing, which premiered in competition at the Sundance Film Festival and was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award. Blessing went on to screen at festivals around the world and was released theatrically in the U.S. and abroad. Newsday praised the film as, “Profound. Lots of talent.” And the New York Post called the film, “One hell of a debut for director Paul Zehrer.” Paul has produced and directed films with Al Gore, Moveon.org and Nickelodeon, where he received an Emmy Nom. He is currently in postproduction on a film made in the Middle East about early childhood education in crisis zones, as well as a new feature documentary on SAT testing in America. Paul has also directed several award-winning films on Waldorf education. Paul has a twenty-year history in editing both independent and documentary feature films, music videos and documentary features and shorts. He has taught writing and directing at VCU in Richmond, VA, and has been a Fellow Artist in Residence at Yaddo and Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.
Farnoosh Samadi & Ali Asgari, 2016, Iran/Italy/France, 15 minutes, Cast:
Fatma Alakus, Cahide Ozel, Valentina Carnelutti
Screening with: Indivisible + Between Lines ~ Friday, October 28 @ 12:00 pm
Fatma and her mother are Kurdish refugees in Italy. On their visit to the doctor, Fatma has to translate what the doctor tells to her mother but she keeps silent.
Farnoosh Samadi & Ali Asgari
Farnoosh Samadi was born in Iran and graduated at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Rome. She began her career as a filmmaker at Iranian Youth Cinema Society and wrote the short film « More Than Two Hours » and « The Baby », directed by Ali Asgari. Il Silenzio is her first work as a director.
Ali Asgari was born in Tehran and, graduated from a cine school in Italia. He directed the short film « More than Two Hours » (in competition at Cannes in 2013 and Sundance in 2014) and « The Baby » (in competition at Venice in 2014), presented in more than 500 festivals around the world and winner of over 100 awards.
Saad Al Essamy, 2015, Iraq, 30 minutes
Screening with: A Pact with the Devil ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 12:00 pm
A fiction film which the memory of the writer flies into the spaces of time, where evil climbed over its days and years, to tell us a story stifled by the breaths of his age, as he was living that immemorial period. Until the destiny took him to a place of a certain crime it witnessed, and a tale that provoked its conscience, which suffered a heart heedless, that caused him to miss the chance to catch up with happy people. This is the opportunity which passes by the clouds … It made him cry all what remains from his days, until it comes the day as he can tell it to his daughter as if death has sent him the message of revelation … that was the story of choice between heaven and hell.
Saad Al Essamy
Saad Al Essamy was born in Iraq in 1985 and studied directing at the Faculty of Fine Arts and a bachelor's degree in directing in 2009. He then studied at the Faculty of Information and earned a bachelor's degree in 2013 and his many documentaries and fiction.
The Stripes of the Sergeant
Emmanuelle Cuau, 2015, France, 13 minutes, Cast:
Olivier Cruveiller, Veronika Varga, Tigrane Ponsin
Screening with: Snow Pirates + Learning Alliance ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 4:15 pm
It’s Christmas time. A young boy of 8 receives a military uniform. His father wants him to be a perfect little para.
Body & Sound
Alberto Nacci, 2015, Italy, 4 minutes, Music Video, Cast:
Sergio Arturo Calonego
Screening with: Todo Color + State of Grace ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 2:30 pm
Sergio Arturo Calonego plays acoustic guitar in this short by Alberto Nacci on the relationship between musician and his musical instrument. Audio recording by Dario Ravelli / Suonovio Recording Studio.
Festivals & Awards: Winner at Hollywood International Moving Pictures Film Festival 2016 (Best Music Video)
Winner (Award of Excellence) at INDIEFest Film Awards 2016 / Winner at Bellingham Music Film Fest 2016 (Best Music Video)
Born in 1957 at Trapani (Italy), lives and works in Bergamo since 1982. Former professor of Sound Design at Academies of Fine Arts in Bergamo and Brescia, after a long career musician with numerous musical productions and a rich concert activity, he dedicated himself to the production of art and culture documentaries, industrial films and video art works received numerous international awards. His works are appreciated in Italy and abroad and selected some of the most important festivals of film and video art in Europe, USA, Asia. He has made numerous video works for exhibitions of artists such as Mario Benedetti, Philip Corner, Viveka Assembergs, Chris Gilmour, Paolo Ghilardi, Dietelmo Pievani, Ciaccio, Maura Cantamessa ... His movie The Garden of Peace was presented in the Italian Pavilion in the 14th Venice Architecture Biennale. In 2015 he conceived and conducted the first seminar "Video Art and Industry" in collaboration with the Carrara Academy of Fine Arts in Bergamo and the Business Incubator Development of Bergamo at the POINT of Dalmine.
Cosette Nigon, 2015, France, 7 minutes, Animation
Screening with: Taboo + The Salt Man ~ Friday, October 28 @ 8:15 pm
A tale from One Thousand and One Nights in the digital era.
Ed & Pauline
Christian Bruno & Natalija Vekic, 2016, USA, 18 minutes, Cast:
Pauline Kael, Ed Landberg, John Waters, Tom Luddy, Ernest Callenbach
Screening with: Rebel Citizen ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 2:00 pm
Film critic Pauline Kael and Ed Landberg transformed in a small storefront theater into a church for movie lovers. But how long could two self-righteous cinephiles stay together? A portrait of the brief, tumultuous marriage, and the theatre, that changed the way we feel about the movies.
ED & PAULINE is a portrait of the brief, tumultuous, but ultimately influential creative collaboration between Pauline Kael and Ed Landberg. Long before she became the legendary film critic of The New Yorker, Pauline was a single mother in the Bay Area of the 1950’s, cobbling together a modest living and attempting to follow her true passion -- writing film criticism. Then she met Ed: another eccentric cinephile, who opened an art house cinema in a storefront -- one of the first of its kind in America. Together, they transformed the Cinema Guild into a church for movie lovers -- unearthing rarely screened classics, showing legendary international films, and championing undiscovered directors. Through their visionary curation and film writing, they influenced and inspired a new generation of movie lovers, cinephiles, directors and exhibitors, who once sat in those faded and worn chairs, under the spell of the cinema.
Christian Bruno & Natalija Vekic
Christian Bruno is a cinematographer and director whose work includes documentary and narrative. He has shot several Award-winning short films, including Jessie Epstein’s 34x25x36 and Muayad Alayan’s Lesh Sabreen?, and just wrapped Brian Davis’ feature-length doc The Million Dollar Duck about wildlife painters, the Federal Duck Stamp and the American dream. His music video for the British pop-star Goldfrapp, Laurel, was just released in August. He regularly shoots and directs shorts for a variety of clients, from Adobe Systems to the LA County Arts Commission. As a director, Christian co-directed the Sundance Award-winner Pie Fight 69 with Sam Green. His upcoming feature-length doc, Strand: A Natural History of Cinema, is a meditation on
movie going, and received partial funding from the California Council for Humanities, and the SF Arts Commission, and participated in the Independent Feature Project. Christian Bruno was the recipient of the first HBO Documentary Fellowship.
Natalija Vekic is a screenwriter, director and producer whose short films, The Sacred Heart and The Girl with the Pearl Suspended have screened internationally. Natalija won a Golden Gate Award at the San Francisco International Film Festival for her short film Lost & Found, and was the recipient of the Princess Grace Award. She is a recent graduate of the UCLA MFA
screenwriting program where she received the Executive Board Award Fellowship, a UCLA Graduate Fellowship and was selected to work with Academy Award-winner Dustin Lance Black in a screenwriting seminar where she wrote Jane. The script participated in the Fall 2013 screenwriting lab at Film Independent.
Glen Milner, 2015, United Kingdom, 7 minutes, Cast:
Karim & Kartari Chand
Screening with: League of Exotique Dancers ~ Friday, October 28 @ 10:15 pm
8 children, 26 grandchildren, 28 great-grandchildren….after 88 years of marriage Karim and Kartari still make each other laugh. Having moved from India to Bradford [UK] in 1969, the couple have the longest known marriage in the world. They never imagined they would end up being married longer than any other couple in the world. Their personal story of family, immigration, love, and the working-class is both inspiring and honest as we gain a valuable insight into how different cultures respect their elders.
Glen Milner is a British filmmaker, based in London. He started his film career by working through the ranks of camera department on films sucthe Tree of Life. From there, Glen focused his own distinct style into documentary storytelling. His short films for Channel 4, The Guardian, The Telegraph, & SKY have received critical acclaim including awards at The New York Short Film Festival and nominations at The American Film Institute. Glen’s approach has led to commercials for brands such as Citroen, Tag Heuer, Audi, British Airways, UNICEF and Steinway & Sons. Film commissions for sites such as Louis Vuitton’s creative arm Nowness.com, have raised awareness surrounding challenging subjects while retaining an individual style, and this eye for a story has seen branded work broadcast on television in the US.
State of Grace
Diana Stanton, 2015, USA, 5 minutes, Cast:
Diana Stanton, Tiffany Davids, Lauren Chertudi, Hannah Wassenburg
Screening with: Todo Color + Body & Sound ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 2:30 pm
“State of Grace” focuses on strengths within the different stages of life and the celebration of each age in the human experience. In this intergenerational piece, filmed in San Luis Obispo County, CA, each dancer looks upon her younger self providing unseen guidance and showcasing each age and developing wisdom with a “state of grace.”
Diana Stanton is an Associate Professor of Dance at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, CA, and she directs the Dance Program within the Theatre and Dance Department. Diana also is also the Co-Founder, Co- Artistic Director, and Administrative Director of Variable Velocity Performance Group in San Luis Obispo, CA. She created significant original choreography and multimedia dances with Variable Velocity the past 12 years. She received an M.F.A. in Dance from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a B.A. in Dance from the University of California, Irvine. Her choreography has been presented professionally in many venues including: Jumpbrush Pacific Dance Convergence, San Luis Obispo, CA; Choreography Under the Stars at the McCallum Theatre in Palm Desert; UC Irvine; Jazz Dance Workshop; Dancers for Life, a benefit for AIDS at Riverside Community College; Cal Poly; Allan Hancock College; the L.A. Open Festival; and several American College Dance Festivals throughout the U.S.
Rubén Llama & Alejandro Manzano, 2016, Spain, 10 minutes, Cast:
Ayoub El Hilali, AbdelatifHwidar, Lily Neu
Screening with: Crooked & Narrow ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 9:15 pm
The Learning Alliance
Faysal is a Young man of Arab-descent, who along with his friend Abdul, is about to make the most difficult decision in his life in a plane. But in the last minute, he suffers a panic attack and starts to have second thoughts.
Rubén Llama & Alejandro Manzano
was born on August 19, 1979 in Brussels, Belgium. After finishing high school, Ruben Flame is formed in Law and Philosophy. Movie lover from an early age, decides to implement his creative vocation and in 2011 directed his first short film. He has written several screenplays. Currently he is working on several projects that shape his personal vision of the human being, in order to break into the film world.
was born in Malaga in 1981. He writes from a very young age, is Technician in Audiovisual Production and Entertainment. He has made several documentaries and corporate videos as a camera operator and assistant director. His first short film was “Ex Lege”, now presents “Adila”, co-directed with Ruben Llama.
Muhammad Umar Saeed, 2016, Pakistan, 8 minutes, Cast:
Fareed Ullah, Hazrat Ullah, Osama Din
Screening with: Snow Pirates + The Stripes of the Sargent ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 4:15 pm
Collecting garbage for earning and paying their fees for school. Three brothers who are changing their future by studying and at the same time selling garbage in Lahore, Pakistan. The Learning Alliance is a portrait of children with dreams and their struggle towards achieving it.
Muhammad Umar Saeed
After graduating in film production, Umar started producing documentaries and short films which have been screened in many reputable film festivals around the globe. Umar was the part of Sesame Street production in Pakistan (A project by USAID). He is also curating and programming film festivals in Lahore. The Learning Alliance is his latest documentary.
Veemsen Lama, 2015, Nepal, 15 minutes, Cast:
Ashmita Tamang, Suraj Tamang, Aakash Malla
Screening with: Tibetan Warrior ~ Friday, October 28 @ 4:15 pm
Narrowly escaping the clutches of the slave traders, Maya, Bikram and Kancha suddenly find themselves trapped in the heart of Kathmandu. Vulnerable, penniless and alone, they are forced to live their life on the streets with only hopes and dreams of happiness.
Veemsen Lama is a Nepali film director, who currently resides in London. His journey to filmmaking is a unique one. After working in the British armed forces for 13 years, he had a gut feeling that he should be telling stories, and followed it. This led him to Ravensbourne Film School London where he studied for a Bachelor's Degree in Digital Film Production.Recently, he returned to Nepal to shoot his latest short film, MAYA. In addition to that, he is prepping for his debut feature.
Maya Neumeier [in person]
, 2016, USA, 5 minutes, Cast:
Myles Brown, Darius Brown [in person]
, Ke'Mari Moore, Ashlí Patrice, Anthony Harris, Anthony O' Neal
Screening with: Sonoma Filmmakers ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 7:00 pm
OAK is a short film shot in Oakland, California, about a young fighter Jonah who is forced to choose between following the norm, or branching out, and living life in a new way to give his brother Tai a better life.
Maya Neumeier is a young independent filmmaker based out of Mendocino California. She has produced 14 short films and one feature with her production company, California Poppy Films, and has worked on some high profile titles including: Adventure Capitalist for NBC, Crabs! for Willa Films, and Magical Child for Canon. She has won Best Writer at the Directors Guild of America, placed in the top 15 of the International 48-hour film competition, and won first place for the International 96-hour film competition. Her film OAK is a passion project she's dreamed about for years. She's thankful to all who have helped with the short, and is looking to make it a feature in the coming years.
For the Kids of Paarl
S. Kramer Herzog [in person]
, 2015, USA, 7 minutes
Screening with: Sonoma Filmmakers ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 7:00 pm
Award winning film maker S. Kramer Herzog's "Kids of Paarl" conveys a harshly authentic view of children themselves who are caught up in the middle of situations they did not create, ask for or control. These youngsters are simply and sadly victims of economic stress and political injustice. To bring some joy to the kids, money was raised in San Francisco, California, equipment was shipped overseas and a playground was built in Paarl, South Africa. Additionally, shipped were 340,000 meals -- enough to feed 340 children for a full year.
S. Kramer Herzog
Herzog has won numerous awards for previous documentaries he's made, including "San Quentin Inside," which documents the prison's sports program, and "I Remember Mo-Me," a tribute to San Anselmo, CA, resident Mozart Kaufman, a World War II hero and Herzog's surrogate father. But "Eye of the Storm" has helped him realize a lifelong dream. “Eye of the Storm,” the 15-minute documentary, has reaped Herzog the CreaTV’s best producer award for 2012, the “Citizen Journalism” award for best short documentary at the Lighthouse International Film Fest, "Best Short Documentary" at The SENE International Festival in 2014 and was named by the Hometown Awards best independently produced documentary for community media programming in 2012. "For the Kids of Paarl" won the best documentary in the Western United States and the best documentary in the New Jersey Film Festival in May, 2016.
Go Away Gary
Jeremiah Johnson & Danny McMillan [in person]
, 205, USA, 18 minutes, Cast:
Screening with: Sonoma Filmmakers ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 7:00 pm
Nice guy Gary is rejected by everyone in his life in a single day's time, leading nice guy Gary to become not so nice at all.
Jeremiah Johnson & Danny McMillan
Jeremiah Johnson and Danny McMillan moved from the Bay Area to Los Angeles to write script and make hella money. Instead, Jeremiah ended up woking at Barns and Noble while Danny got a job at a shitty bar in Culver City. Between selling Twilight books and kicking drunk UCLA students out of a bar, they made a web series called 86’d and several short films. Danny basically gave up and moved back to San Francisco while Jeremiah is still trying his best. They occasionally still get together and work on new ideas.
Eat Pray Farm
Lauren Michele [in person]
, 2016, USA/Indonesia, 15 minutes, Cast:
Screening with: Sonoma Filmmakers ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 7:00 pm
A documentary short on the culture of rice farming in Bali, Indonesia. This film explores the harmony of nature, people, and religion through the lens of a sustainable water management and irrigation system known as SUBAK used in the Balinese rice fields for over 1,000 years.
Lauren Michele, Founder of Policy in Motion, has a Master’s of Science degree from UC Davis in sustainability policy and has worked to advance California's land use and transportation planning for 10 years. She found in the last decade of working on local sustainability projects and state legislative policy, that multi-media formats are a powerful way to communicate important concepts to both the public and Legislators. She produced her first film documentary in 2012, Growing Beautiful Communities, as part of an educational effort to help policy-makers understand the importance of providing funding for sustainable community practices that can improve community quality of life while meeting California’s environmental and economic goals. In 2011, she authored a book called "Policy in Motion: Transportation Planning in California after AB 32" based on her graduate research focused on the links between climate change and urban development.
Danielle Mandella [in person]
, 205, USA, 10 minutes
Screening with: Sonoma Filmmakers ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 7:00 pm
Faced with the relentless daily challenges of living with Cystic Fibrosis, a life-threatening genetic disease with no cure, ten-year-old Joshua dreams of becoming a sixth degree black belt in Taekwondo and opening his own martial arts studio where he can teach other kids, in his own words, “what it means to be awesome.
A Different Kind of Path
Danielle Mandella was born and bred in Sacramento, CA, where she quickly developed a sharp aesthetic eye and passion for creativity in all its traditional and nontraditional expressions. Trained in film and comedy in Los Angeles with the Los Angeles Film School, Upright Citizens Brigade Theater and iO West Theater, Danielle also spent time in Chicago as a part of the Second City Network, where she further honed her own creative voice. Drawing inspiration from friends and collaborators who cite her unique ability to develop their abstract ideas from conception to completion, Danielle founded Breathe Easy Productions as a means to transporting passionate stories from imagination into reality.
Zach Bellin [in person]
, 2016, USA, 3 minutes, Cast:
Summer Hagerty [in person]
Screening with: Sonoma Filmmakers ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 7:00 pm
Through a girls' dream, her stressful life is represented as two paths, the past and future. As she climbs up the future path she realizes the challenges in life will only grow for her.
Zach Bellin has had an interest in film and storytelling for as long as he can remember. He has made countless short films and proudly attends Marin School of the Arts (MSA) in the Cinematic Arts discipline. He enjoys making films both in and out of the classroom and all of the aspects involved. While his passion lies with editing and writing, he enjoys acting, cinematography and even composing music for his films. He has also performed in Marin County theatre productions directed by Marilyn Izdebski and the Performing Arts Academy of Marin.
Gerhard Funk, 2016, Germany, 7 minutes, Animation
Screening with: Walnut Tree ~ Saturday, October 29 @ 10:15 pm
Rise into being, mature, perish – Fruit tells a creation story. As the animated short film unfolds, it brings forth a play of shapes illustrating the dialog between two mythological forces – the West and the East. In it the vibrating entities of black and white are constantly being split apart and reconciled by red, in a playful and dramatic choreography of forms and figures.
Born 1981 in Russia and moved to Germany at the age of 13. Apprenticeship as designer of print media then study at the Academy of Fine Art Saar in the subject "Media Arts & Design". Graduated 2010. 2011-2015 different Jobs in the field of 3D and 2D animation. Simultaneously independent film making. Now freelance animator and independent film maker.
Who Doesn't Have a Dark Side
Léo Favier, 2016, France, 15 minutes, Cast:
Screening with: Freightened ~ Sunday, October 30 @ 12:00 pm
The budget minister finds himself cornered by journalists. That’s it, they’ve found evidence of his secret Swiss bank account. Scandal! Resignation! How could things have come to such a pass? To come up with an exit strategy, the minister dives back into his past. Made using video clips taken from image banks, the film gives a humorous and exact account of the life of a politician who grabs every opportunity he can to succeed and clamber his way to the top.
Born in Paris in 1985, Léo Favier is an author, designer and filmmaker. After a national diplôma of fine arts at the École supérieure des arts décoratifs of Strasbourg and several projects between Germany and France, Léo Favier lives in Berlin, alternating ordered or self works, sometimes by himself but ofter in collaborative Works with other artists, in design, edition and documentary. His first film Kinoki (direct solutions for a better life), co-directed with the German designers Schroeter und Berger, is a doc-feature produced by les Films Sauvages, with images taken from a Super 8 footage found from his native village. Broadcasted on Canal +, he obtained le prix qualité of the CNC in 2013 ad several festival awards.