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Films & Schedules - Monday, February 14, 2011

ARMADILLO

Mon, Feb 14, 2011
at 6 PM (B1)
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ARMADILLO

DIRECTOR: Janus Metz - DENMARK

Armadillo is the name of a heavily fortified UK-Danish army base in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. In 2009, Metz and crew followed a group of young Danish recruits as they adjusted to the grim realities of conflict, inside and outside their secure camp. The result is one of the most harrowing reports on the war and a vivid portrait of the impact of boredom and battle on mind and body. Venturing off the base, the voices of Afghan citizens, caught in the complexities of the coalition and Taliban crossfire, reveal the daunting challenge of finding a stable peace. Whether capturing the...

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THE FIRST GRADER

Mon, Feb 14, 2011
at 6 PM (WH)
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THE FIRST GRADER

DIRECTOR: Justin Chadwick - GREAT BRITAIN

A deep and rich exploration of a man’s life-long fight for dignity and freedom, The First Grader, based on a true story, is set in a remote primary school in Kenya. Among the hundreds of children hoping to enroll for the free education newly promised by the government, one applicant causes astonishment. He is Maruge, an old Mau Mau veteran in his eighties. He fought for the liberation of his country and now wants the chance of an education so long denied. Moved by his passionate plea, head teacher Jane Obinchu supports his struggle to gain admission, and together they...

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LA PIVELLINA

Mon, Feb 14, 2011
at 6:15 PM (B3)
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LA PIVELLINA

DIRECTOR: Tizza Covi, Rainer Frimmel - AUSTRIA

In a muddy trailer park on the outskirts of Rome, Patty and husband Walter, performers in a poor traveling circus, wait out the dreary winter. One day at a nearby park, Patty finds a two-year-old girl standing alone in the rain. She brings little Asia home to dry her off and discovers a note in her pocket saying the girl will be picked up in due course by her troubled mother. As the days turn into weeks with no sign of the mother, a new family is formed that offers unexpected joy to everyone in the itinerant community. Bringing a...

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KAWASAKI’S ROSE

Mon, Feb 14, 2011
at 6:45 PM (B2)
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KAWASAKI’S ROSE

DIRECTOR: Jan Hrebejk - CZECH REPUBLIC

Lacing a vivid family drama with light comedic flourishes, Hrebejk offers a poetic and political rumination on contemporary Czech life that reminds us that the present can never outrun the past. Pavel is an esteemed psychiatrist whose dissident activism during the days of Communist rule is about to be honored with a national award. Most everyone is pleased. But unfortunately the film crew documenting Pavel’s accomplishments includes his erratic, resentful son-in-law, Ludek, who is convinced Pavel’s righteous arrogance conceals a darker truth. When research reveals that Pavel had a sordid past with the Czech secret police, Ludek uncovers a shocking...

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AFTERSHOCK

Mon, Feb 14, 2011
at 7 PM (B4)
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AFTERSHOCK

DIRECTOR: Feng Xiaogang - CHINA

This year’s Chinese submission for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar also reigns as the most popular film in Chinese box office history. Feng Xiaogang tells the epic story of the survivors of one of China’s greatest natural disasters, the Tangshan Earthquake of 1976, which killed nearly 250,000 people. What starts as a disaster movie of Titanic proportions—with impressive special effects—moves to a deeply moving family melodrama that has wrung billions of tears from Chinese audiences. When the earthquake strikes, father Daqing is killed, and mother Yuanni (Xu Fan) is forced to make an impossible choice involving her two children...

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THE WHITE MEADOWS

Mon, Feb 14, 2011
at 8:30 PM (B3)
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THE WHITE MEADOWS

DIRECTOR: Mohammad Rasoulof - IRAN

Rasoulof’s enigmatic feature tells the story of Rahmat, an elderly man who collects the tears of souls in pain in a tiny pitcher—remaining all the while a nonjudgmental witness to the absurd havoc wreaked by the powers that be. Traveling by boat to scenes of sorrow through a seascape dotted with salty white islands and cliffs, he encounters a woman consigned to the sea for rejecting an unwanted marriage, an artist punished for his choice of colors, a young virgin drowned as a sacrifice to the gods in hopes of rain, and other unfortunates. An allegory for government persecution of...

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CERTIFIED COPY

Mon, Feb 14, 2011
at 8:45 PM (WH)
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CERTIFIED COPY

DIRECTOR: Abbas Kiarostami - FRANCE

This beguiling exploration of art and relationships, his first feature film made outside of Iran, sees Kiarostami producing his most accessible work to date. When an author (played by British opera singer William Shimell) comes to Tuscany to promote his book about the value of copied art, he encounters and spends a day with an antiques dealer (Juliette Binoche, Best Actress, Cannes Film Festival). As they walk, talk, and drive through the beautiful landscape, it at first appears as though they’ve never met. But as time progresses, mystery intrudes. Are they strangers playing the part of a couple, or are...

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CIRCO

Mon, Feb 14, 2011
at 8:45 PM (B1)
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CIRCO

DIRECTOR: Aaron Schock - MEXICO

Filmed along the back roads of rural Mexico, this cinematic road movie enters the luminous world of a small traveling circus while examining the universal themes of family bonds, filial responsibility, and the weight of cultural inheritance. An enchanting, insiders’ tale of family life under the big top, it documents an almost extinct way of life. To be a member of the Ponce family is to participate in La Gran Circo de Mexico, family-owned and operated since the 19th century. But as declining audiences threaten the circus’ viability, the ties that bind the family fray and loosen, and the future...

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A FAMILY

Mon, Feb 14, 2011
at 9 PM (B2)
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A FAMILY

DIRECTOR: Pernille Fischer Christensen - DENMARK

Rikard Rheinwald is the last in a line of five generations of prosperous Copenhagen bakers (“purveyors to the Royal Court!”). Diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer, the proud man decides that his daughter Ditte should take over the family business. But Ditte has her hands full with her successful art gallery, a dream job offer in New York, and difficulties with her boyfriend. The conflicting demands of family and tradition, an aging father and a determined daughter, are given powerful dramatic treatment in a film that deftly explores the universal with no pat answers, just resonating recognition and understanding. (102 mins.)

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