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Films & Schedules - Friday, February 6, 2015

MARIE'S STORY

Fri, Feb 6, 2015
at 5:45 PM (FOX TOWER)
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MARIE'S STORY

DIRECTOR: JEAN-PIERRE AMÉRIS - FRANCE

Inspired by the life of Marie Heurtin, Marie’s Story is a playful, inspirational, and moving emotional journey between teacher and student set in the 19th century French countryside. Fourteen-year-old Marie arrives at a school for deaf girls run by Catholic sisters. Born deaf and blind and trapped ever since in a world of darkness and silence, she is, at first, wild, disheveled, and nearly unreachable. But the idealistic Sister Marguerite feels a deep and instant need to free her from her sensory prison. Featuring fierce performances by newcomer Ariana Rivoire as the courageous young woman struggling to connect to...

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THE LESSON

Fri, Feb 6, 2015
at 6 PM (Moreland Theater)
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THE LESSON

DIRECTOR: KRISTINA GROZEVA, PETAR VALCHANOV - BULGARIA

Nadezhda is a young, hardworking teacher in a small Bulgarian town. One day she is shocked to discover that there is a thief in her class. Determined to find out who it is so she can teach him or her the difference between right and wrong, at the same time she is frantically struggling to deal with the looming foreclosure on her house and the squanderings of her unemployed, drunk husband. As financial ruin closes in, personal values meet their test. Grozeva and Valchanov maintain a seemingly dispassionate air in the face of their heroine’s escalating desperation, a distance that...

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LIVING IS EASY WITH EYES CLOSED

Fri, Feb 6, 2015
at 6 PM (Cinema 21)
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LIVING IS EASY WITH EYES CLOSED

DIRECTOR: DAVID TRUEBA - SPAIN

Beatles fans will recognize the title from the lyrics in “Strawberry Fields Forever,” which John Lennon wrote while in southern Spain playing a minor character in Richard Lester’s anti-war movie How I Won the War. This event forms the backdrop of Trueba’s charming road movie about Antonio, a Spanish schoolteacher who is also an avid Beatles fan. When he learns that Lennon is filming in Almeria, he sets out to meet him. Along the way he makes friends with Belen, a 20-year-old pregnant girl on her way home to her family, and Juanjo, a teenage boy. Lennon’s words take on...

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PHOENIX

Fri, Feb 6, 2015
at 6 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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PHOENIX

DIRECTOR: CHRISTIAN PETZOLD - GERMANY

Petzold’s riveting film follows Nelly (Nina Hoss), a concentration camp survivor returning to Berlin, in her search for Johnny (Ronald Zehrfeld), the husband she still loves who may or may not have betrayed her to the Nazis. Set in the period immediately following the war that gave rise to the Trümmerfilm (literally “rubble film”)—or “After the Camp,” as Petzold puts it—Phoenix is an engrossing reflection on the postwar reconstruction of identity couched as a noirish thriller of mistaken identity. Co-written with the late writer/artist Harun Farocki, it is a precisely crafted chamber piece, resonant and gripping, softly building up to...

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THE LIGHT SHINES ONLY THERE

Fri, Feb 6, 2015
at 7 PM (Roseway Theater)
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THE LIGHT SHINES ONLY THERE

DIRECTOR: MIPO O - JAPAN

This year’s Japanese submission for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar and the winner of the Best Director award at the Montreal World Film Festival, O’s film is set in the grittiest fringes of Hokkaido, a port town in a permanent polluted haze. The traumatized Tatsuo spends his days drifting aimlessly and his nights drinking to oblivion. At a smoke-filled pachinko bar, he meets Takuji, a brash blonde teen parolee, who impulsively invites him to the seaside hovel she shares with her bedridden father, careworn mother, and world-weary older sister Chinatsu. As Tatsuo and Chinatsu take tentative steps towards a...

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THE JAPANESE DOG

Fri, Feb 6, 2015
at 8:30 PM (Fox Tower)
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THE JAPANESE DOG

DIRECTOR: TUDOR CHRISTIAN JURGIU - ROMANIA

This year’s Romanian submission for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar, this subtle and movingly told tale of loss and recovery is reminiscent of the work of Japanese master Yasujiro Ozu. Recent floods in rural southern Romania have swept away 80-year-old Costache’s wife and all of their belongings. Now, after a 20-year absence, his estranged son Ticu arrives with his Japanese wife and young son. The unexpected visit forces father and son to relearn how to rebuild their relationship. Costache becomes a real grandfather to his seven-year-old grandson, while Ticu straightens out past mistakes. “A satisfying, unexpectedly upbeat film, superbly...

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FELIX & MEIRA

Fri, Feb 6, 2015
at 8:45 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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FELIX & MEIRA

DIRECTOR: MAXIME GIROUX - CANADA

Winner of the Audience Best Canadian Feature at the Toronto International Film Festival, Felix & Meira is set in Montreal’s Mile End neighborhood, characterized by a mixture of hipsters and Hasidism, which coexists amicably but independently. When Meira, an Orthodox Jewish wife and mother with an undercurrent of rebelliousness, meets Félix, a middle-aged atheist-loner adrift grieving the recent death of his estranged father, Félix hopes her religious devotion will provide insight into his loss. Though she rebuffs him at first, a mutual, slow-blooming affair takes shape that will present Meira with a difficult fork in the road: remain within the...

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THE TRIBE

Fri, Feb 6, 2015
at 8:45 PM (Cinema 21)
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THE TRIBE

DIRECTOR: MIROSLAV SLABOSHPITSKY - UKRAINE

Winner of the Critics Week Grand Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, the astonishing The Tribe uses only sign language and the actors’ body language to propel the tense drama. Somewhere in Ukraine, Sergey enters a specialized boarding school for the deaf. He quickly encounters the Tribe, a student gang dealing in crime and prostitution. After passing their hazing rituals and being inducted into the group, he takes part in several robberies, works his way up, and becomes pimp/protector for two girls who turn tricks at the local truck stop. Finding himself in love with one of them, Sergey ultimately...

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WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS

Fri, Feb 6, 2015
at 8:45 PM (Moreland Theater)
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WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS

DIRECTOR: JEMAINE CLEMENT, TAIKA WAITITI - NEW ZEALAND

Winner of the People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival, this laugh-filled salute to the mocumentary form and monster movie genre offers a clever salute to pop vampire myths. Viago, Deacon, Vladislav, and Peter are four vampires—each from a different historical time and place—sharing a house in Wellington, New Zealand and trying to balance being undead with the most basic everyday problems. None of them are quite equipped to deal with the modern age, leading to hilarious encounters with potential victims, other creatures of the night, and modern technology. As a documentary film crew follows them round, we...

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