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November 2013
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Films & Schedules - All

ALL THE LABOR

Sat, Nov 16, 2013
at 8:30 PM (Mission Theater)
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ALL THE LABOR

DIRECTOR: DOUGLAS HAWES-DAVIS - MONTANA (MISSOULA, MT)

(DOC) For two decades, The Gourds have played their rock/folk/country tunes, gathered cult listeners, and always managed to float just under the radar of mainstream success—exactly where they like it. Through a mash-up of interviews, live performances, and scraps of footage, Hawes-Davis’s film will have your foot tapping and your heart laughing. These fathers, husbands, and regular guys have bonded with their instruments and friends, playing music for the love of playing. “Director Doug Hawes-Davis manages to turn this quintet into a dynamic symbol of hard work and friendship. He imbues the collage of live performances and interviews with the...

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BACKBONE: EARLY VANCOUVER EXPERIMENTAL CINEMA, 1967-1981

Sun, Nov 10, 2013
at 4 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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BACKBONE: EARLY VANCOUVER EXPERIMENTAL CINEMA, 1967-1981

DIRECTOR: RICHARD MARTIN - BRITISH COLUMBIA (VANCOUVER, BC)

(DOC) From the mid-1960s through the 1970s, Vancouver, BC, was an international hub for experimental film and the source of an enduring body of work that resonates today. Martin’s documentary examines some of the key works of the era, offering perspective on the social and cultural context of the time and the varied influences of psychedelic pop, structuralism, experimental drama, and poetic cinema. Featuring interviews from members of Vancouver’s cultural community—including the artists themselves—the film offers a primer for appreciating a program of key works curated by Martin, all of which reveal vibrant visions. Martin’s BACKBONE (2013) (60 mins.) will...

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BARZAN

Sun, Nov 10, 2013
at 2 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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BARZAN

DIRECTOR: ALEX STONEHILL - WASHINGTON (SEATTLE)

(DOC) To neighbors, Sam “Barzan” Malkandi was the model immigrant and perfect, hard-working family man. To investigators, Malkandi was a cold-blooded terrorist who represented a potential link between Iraq and the 9/11 attacks. To audiences, Malkandi is a mercurial character whose story embodies controversial issues of immigration, xenophobia, and the price of security in the 21st century. Shot both in Iraq and Seattle and featuring haunting sand animation sequences, BARZAN offers an epic geopolitical journey of a family torn apart by suspicion as it examines the opaque government agencies charged with keeping us safe, even at the cost of freedom....

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BIBLE QUIZ

Sat, Nov 16, 2013
at 6 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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BIBLE QUIZ

DIRECTOR: NICOLE TEENY - WASHINGTON (GIG HARBOR, WA)

(DOC) In Tacoma, Washington, and all over the country, many church groups participate in an annual competition of memorizing and reciting Bible verses and trivia, all in the hopes of making it to a national competition where the best of the best duel it out. With an approaching National Bible Quiz Championship on the horizon, 17-year-old Mikayla and the other members of her Bible quiz group study and practice with unbeatable dedication. But for Mikayla, it is more than just Bible trivia. Her quiz group is an escape from family troubles, a chance at belonging, and the place where she...

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CAMERA SHY

Wed, Nov 13, 2013
at 7 PM (Mission Theater)
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CAMERA SHY

DIRECTOR: MARK SAWERS - BRITISH COLUMBIA (VANCOUVER, BC)

(NAR) Larry (Nicolas Wright) is an unprincipled city councilman who doesn’t mind a little fraud and infidelity if it advances his political career and strokes his ego. Soon, however, he notices an uncanny cameraman documenting his every move and misdeed. Larry’s psychiatrist suggests that the cameraman is a manifestation of his subconscious, whose purpose is to make Larry own up to his bad behavior and change his ways. But owning up to the truth of his life, which now includes not only a broken marriage but an accidental homicide, proves too much for Larry’s ego to handle. He comes to...

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CITY BABY

Mon, Nov 11, 2013
at 7 PM (Mission Theater)
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CITY BABY

DIRECTOR: DAVID F. MORGAN - OREGON (PORTLAND)

(NAR) “This pungent, Portland-set tale features a striking performance by Cora Benesh as Cloey, a 25-year-old aspiring actress facing a turning point in her life. Freewheeling party girl Cloey is comfortably living off her daddy’s (Daniel Baldwin) money, ignoring his entreaties to get a job and pursuing her acting career while living with her aging rocker boyfriend Jesse (Andrew Harris). She’s just landed a role in a new play, as a gay teenage boy. Taking full advantage of its extensive Portland locations—‘I love being damp 250 days a year,’ one character bitterly observes—it also effectively captures the city’s independent rock...

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EDEN

Sun, Nov 10, 2013
at 7 PM (Mission Theater)
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EDEN

DIRECTOR: MEGAN GRIFFITHS - WASHINGTON (SEATTLE)

In this electrifying thriller inspired by true events, Jamie Chung (THE HANGOVER, THE MAN WITH THE IRON FISTS) stars as Hyun Jae, a young Korean-American girl abducted and forced into prostitution by a human and drug trafficking ring. Renamed “Eden” by her kidnappers, she soon learns the only way to survive is to earn the trust of those in charge: Bob Gault, a corrupt US Marshal (Beau Bridges), and his assistant Vaughan (Matt O’Leary), a disturbed young man battling demons of his own. But as Eden’s influence within the operation grows, she must decide just how much of herself she’s...

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EMPTY HOLLOW ECHO

Tue, Nov 12, 2013
at 8:30 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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EMPTY HOLLOW ECHO

DIRECTOR: ADAM SEKULER - WASHINGTON (SEATTLE)

(NAR) A man exits a building and immediately realizes that he doesn’t have his keys. Locked out, he wanders the empty streets alone, noticing everything that had been drowned out by the hustle and bustle of the city by day. An apocalyptic film with no apocalypse, a dystopic vision of man’s physical imprint on space, an architecture film as seen from a night on earth, Sekuler’s character aches for attention and longs to be alone. (74 mins.)

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THE EXHIBITION

Thu, Nov 14, 2013
at 8:30 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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THE EXHIBITION

DIRECTOR: DAMON VIGNALE - BRITISH COLUMBIA (VANCOUVER, BC)

(DOC) In 2006, Pamela Masik began to paint massive, gruesome portraits based on a police poster of 69 missing women—many of them Aboriginal—from the streets of Vancouver. Twenty-six of her subjects were murdered on Robert Pickton’s farm. She wanted the paintings to bear witness to the crimes and accuse a systemically racist and sexist society that minimizes violence against women. Instead, activist groups are outraged, accusing her of exploiting women’s suffering to further her career. The film follows Masik as, with an energy that is often disturbing in its own way to watch, she works to finish the paintings. Interviews...

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THE FALLS: TESTAMENT OF LOVE

Sat, Nov 16, 2013
at 8 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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THE FALLS: TESTAMENT OF LOVE

DIRECTOR: JON GARCIA - OREGON (LAKE OSWEGO, OR)

Five years after we left RJ and Chris in THE FALLS (2012 Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival), the ex-lovers who met as Mormon missionaries are living separate and decidedly different lives. In Seattle, RJ is in a relationship as an openly gay man, while Chris is married to a woman in Salt Lake City, where the two are raising their daughter. An unexpected event finds the two young men thrust once again into each other’s lives. As old feelings begin to surface, they face even more difficult choices in their mutual quest for love, freedom, and happiness. (100 mins.)

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FINDING TRUELOVE

Thu, Nov 14, 2013
at 8:30 PM (Mission Theater)
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FINDING TRUELOVE

DIRECTOR: SAM KUHN - WASHINGTON (BAINBRIDGE ISLAND, WA)

(DOC) Clay, Michael, and Andrew are fascinated by a yearbook from Chico High’s Class of 1990, which they discover at a Value Village. Intrigued by the cryptic word “caduceus” emblazoned across the cover and by the countless sweet mullets and dream girls inside, the three friends lock onto one particular student: feather-banged mystery man Timothy Truelove. When the guys discover the upcoming Class of 1990’s 20th reunion, they can’t resist the temptation to crash. “This is hands down the most awesome road trip you’ll ever take from Portland to Chico, California! Will they get busted by the Reunion Committee? Will...

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Sat, Nov 16, 2013
at 1 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)

FRESH FILM NORTHWEST WINNING WORKS

YOUTH

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HAWAIIAN PUNCH

Mon, Nov 11, 2013
at 8:30 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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HAWAIIAN PUNCH

DIRECTOR: NANDAN RAO - OREGON (CORVALLIS, OR)

(NAR) This unconventional buddy movie follows two young Mormon men on a mission term in Hawaii, who spend their days cliff diving, moped riding, and conversing about relationships and religion. Despite the seeming frivolity of their daily activities, pressures weigh upon them to find wives and become serious men. “Knowingly, HAWAIIAN PUNCH lacks action. In fact, it is the inaction of the film and its protagonists that reveals the fundamental truth in their lives. Instead of spiritual enlightenment, these are two men on the verge of realizing their own stasis. Nick is pursuing romance as a devout Mormon, while Tor...

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JUNK

Fri, Nov 15, 2013
at 8:30 PM (Mission Theater)
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JUNK

DIRECTOR: KEVIN HAMEDANI - WASHINGTON (SEATTLE)

(NAR) Kaveh and Raul are two B-movie co-writers who have suffered a bitter falling out. Kaveh has lost his girlfriend and spends his days getting high, while Raul is across the country studying at Columbia. When word arrives that their all-but-forgotten film, ISLAMA-RAMA 2, has made it into a film festival, the ex-friends are forced to reconnect in order to pitch a new script to the festival’s marquee guest, the mysterious and powerful producer Yukio Tai. Along the way, the pair forges their way through hilarious mishaps involving prima donna actors, cutthroat colleagues, inept agents, seedy motels, and romantic entanglements—all...

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MANDAROSE

Sat, Nov 16, 2013
at 4 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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MANDAROSE

DIRECTOR: GABE VAN LELYVELD - OREGON (PORTLAND)

(NAR) Amanda, isolated and unfulfilled, is the sole provider for and caretaker of her joyful and loving sister, Rose, who has a developmental disability. Rose adores Amanda, but she knows on some level that her sister views her as a burden. Although Amanda takes excellent care of Rose, long-repressed desires for freedom and adventure keep her at an emotional distance. As their already delicate situation worsens, Amanda begins to buckle under the strain, and as a result of her actions, the two sisters find themselves, as well as their understanding of one another, dramatically altered. (54 mins.)

WITH

HEART...

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MMXIII

Mon, Nov 11, 2013
at 7 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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MMXIII

DIRECTOR: IAN CLARK - OREGON (LAGRANDE, OR)

(DOC) Named one of Filmmaker Magazine’s “25 New Faces of Independent Film” in 2012, Ian Clark’s latest work is an observational approach to the documentary film genre, a strategy that marries well with his previous narrative work, notable for its lack of dialogue and desaturated action. MMXIII is an experimental portrait that explores phenomenological subtlety, intersections of construct and vérité, and the ways in which technology, landscape, and beauty coalesce. “Here, an artist’s reflexive gestures investigate moving images and the nature of image construction, blurring the lines between cinema, still photography, and performance art.”—New Orleans Film Society. (77 mins.)

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NEURONS TO NIRVANA: UNDERSTANDING PSYCHEDELIC MEDICINES

Thu, Nov 14, 2013
at 7 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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NEURONS TO NIRVANA: UNDERSTANDING PSYCHEDELIC MEDICINES

DIRECTOR: OLIVER HOCKENHULL - BRITISH COLUMBIA (VANCOUVER, BC)

(DOC) Here we have a sure sign of progress: the psychedelic insights of the ’60s counterculture, intact and now bolstered by decades of study. Drawing on an exemplary range of interviews and visualizations, Oliver Hockenhull’s film examines the effects of ayahuasca, MDMA, LSD, and psilocybin. We learn about their mind-expanding properties, their potential to generate revelation, and their possible and documented medical uses. Why are these substances illegal? Several reasons are posited, including their dubious association with lethal drugs like cocaine and heroin and their open-patent status, which renders them unexploitable by Big Pharma—and a potential threat to the corporate...

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THE PERCEPTION OF MOVING TARGETS

Wed, Nov 13, 2013
at 8:30 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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THE PERCEPTION OF MOVING TARGETS

DIRECTOR: WESTON CURRIE - OREGON (PORTLAND)

(NAR) “In this haunting feature, Currie stages an intervention into habituated and supposedly natural ways of making meaning onscreen. In collaboration with Grouper, who provides an exquisite musical soundscape, he offers an extremely stimulating experience, as viable as it is unconventional. Divided into four chapters that seemingly involve distinct settings and characters (for example, a young woman running track, an infant taking in visual phenomena), the film depicts these subjects in exquisitely layered aural and visual compositions, handily subverting expected narrative connections along the way. Indeed, searching for a traditional plot is missing the point and the pleasure of this...

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A PLACE OF TRUTH

Wed, Nov 13, 2013
at 7 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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A PLACE OF TRUTH

DIRECTOR: BARRETT RUDICH - OREGON (PORTLAND)

(DOC) Abigail Mott is a 21-year-old woman traveling from city to city as a nomadic street poet. Inspired by watching a street poet in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco, Abi sets up camp on a choice city street corner with chair and typewriter and offers to write a personalized poem on the spot for passersby. They decide the subject matter and the fee they’ll pay, and they leave, generally delighted, with a fresh poem all their own. Eventually, Abi takes her typewriter to Brooklyn and New Orleans, where she finds a like-minded artists’ community and develops a crush on...

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SHORTS I

Fri, Nov 8, 2013
at 7 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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Sun, Nov 10, 2013
at 8:45 PM (Mission Theater)
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Thu, Nov 14, 2013
at 7 PM (Mission Theater)
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SHORTS I

SHORTS

The three shorts programs in the 40th Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival offer overviews of the current state of filmmaking in the Northwest, including a wide variety of genre, tone, and cultural diversity—something for everyone.

Screenings at The Mission Theater are 21 and over.

 

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SHORTS II

Sat, Nov 9, 2013
at 7 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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Mon, Nov 11, 2013
at 8:45 PM (Mission Theater)
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Fri, Nov 15, 2013
at 7 PM (Mission Theater)
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SHORTS II

SHORTS

The three shorts programs in the 40th Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival offer overviews of the current state of filmmaking in the Northwest, including a wide variety of genre, tone, and cultural diversity—something for everyone.

Screenings at The Mission Theater are 21 and over.

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SHORTS III

Sun, Nov 10, 2013
at 7 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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Wed, Nov 13, 2013
at 8:45 PM (Mission Theater)
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Sat, Nov 16, 2013
at 7 PM (Mission Theater)
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SHORTS III

SHORTS

The three shorts programs in the 40th Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival offer overviews of the current state of filmmaking in the Northwest, including a wide variety of genre, tone, and cultural diversity—something for everyone.

Screenings at The Mission Theater are 21 and over.

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SURVIVAL PRAYER

Fri, Nov 15, 2013
at 9 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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SURVIVAL PRAYER

DIRECTOR: BENJAMIN GREENÉ - WASHINGTON (BELLINGHAM, WA)

(DOC) In the past century in Haida Gwaii (British Columbia’s Queen Charlotte Islands), commercial logging, over-fishing, and invasive species have compromised the availability of traditionally harvested foods and threatened the long-term viability of these practices. Compounding this ecological damage is the imminent extinction of the Haida language and loss of traditional knowledge. Naanii Mary Swanson, a last speaker, frames this portrait of age-old traditions at risk. Against the spectacular Pacific coastline, her ancient words set the tone for detailed views of modern life, in which the labor of survival—cutting seaweed fronds, pulling salmon from nets, plucking young spruce tips—speaks to...

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WINTER IN THE BLOOD

Fri, Nov 15, 2013
at 7 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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WINTER IN THE BLOOD

DIRECTOR: ALEX SMITH, ANDREW SMITH - MONTANA (MISSOULA, MT)

(NAR) “True to the tough, lyrical, magical spirit of James Welch’s classic novel of Native American life, this hauntingly beautiful movie follows a young Blackfoot Indian’s alcohol-fueled search for his wife, his rifle, his identity—and salvation. WINTER IN THE BLOOD portrays a world that is too often overlooked, that of modern Native American life. Using the prose of James Welch, the film takes an unflinching and realistic look at some of the troubles that this community faces through the lens of this individual. It’s also a treat to see Native American actors, too often relegated to nameless parts in period...

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YOU MAKE ME FEEL SO YOUNG

Tue, Nov 12, 2013
at 7 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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YOU MAKE ME FEEL SO YOUNG

DIRECTOR: ZACH WEINTRAUB - WASHINGTON (OLYMPIA)

(NAR) Weintraub’s third feature exemplifies his intimate filmmaking style, with a minimalism reminiscent of Yasujiro¯ Ozu, Claire Denis, and many other auteurs of world cinema. Justine has uprooted her life to follow her boyfriend Zach as he pursues his own professional opportunities in a new place. Instead of intimacy and bliss, what follows her decision is a sense of alienation from the very man she sets out to join. As Zach’s work pressures mount, their relationship develops rifts, and Justine begins to explore her own creative endeavors. Structured as much by the information we are denied access to as it...

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