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Films & Schedules - Sunday, February 15, 2015

IN ORDER OF DISAPPEARANCE

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 12:45 PM (Fox Tower)
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IN ORDER OF DISAPPEARANCE

DIRECTOR: HANS PETTER MOLAND - NORWAY

Weaving dark Scandinavian comedy with Tarantino-esque revenge thriller, Moland tells the tale of an ordinary, upstanding Swedish snowplow driver in a small Norwegian town who suddenly has his own roads to clear. Dickman (Stellan Skarsgård) suddenly finds that his son has apparently overdosed and died—mysterious since he didn’t do drugs. It’s not long before he’s plowing into what really happened—the boy was just collateral damage in a drug war between “The Count” (Tobias Santelmann) and a Serbian crime don (Bruno Ganz)—and a odd assortment of henchmen. It will be methodical, but “A father must avenge his son.” “A delightfully droll...

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SECRETS OF WAR

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 1 PM (Cinema 21)
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SECRETS OF WAR

DIRECTOR: DENNIS BOTS - NETHERLANDS

During World War II, everyone had to keep secrets to survive, but at what price? Lambert and Tuur, two 12-year-old boys living in a small village in Nazi-occupied Holland, share a strong friendship. But even this bond is put at risk with the arrival of a lively young girl named Maartje, carrying with her a heavy secret about her past. As Tuur and Maartje become close, the estranged Lambert grows increasingly jealous and acts irrationally, exposing Maartje’s secret with far-reaching consequences that are beyond his understanding. The danger and the humanity of wartime friendships asks three children to find maturity...

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Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 1 PM (WHITSELL AUDITORIUM)
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SHORT CUTS 5: ANIMATED WORLDS

DIRECTOR: VARIOUS - SHORT CUTS

This selection of new international animation is selected by LAIKA’S Mark Shapiro from visits to animation festivals worldwide. He will be on-hand to talk about the films.

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WAITING FOR AUGUST

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 1 PM (World Trade Center Theater)
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WAITING FOR AUGUST

DIRECTOR: TEODORAH MIHAI - ROMANIA

Georgiana Halmac is about to turn 15. She lives with her six brothers and sisters in a social housing condo on the outskirts of Bacau, Romania. When their mother Liliana is forced to leave the family to work in Italy, Georgiana is abruptly catapulted into the role of the head of the family, and her adolescence is cut brutally short. History is repeating itself in Romania, says the filmmaker Mihai, who as a child saw her parents flee the Ceaus¸escu regime, leaving her behind until they could send for her. Referred to as the “home alone generation,” children today are...

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I AM BIG BIRD: THE CAROLL SPINNEY STORY

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 1:30 PM (Moreland Theater)
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I AM BIG BIRD: THE CAROLL SPINNEY STORY

DIRECTOR: DAVE LAMATTINA, CHAD WALKER - UNITED STATES

One of the most recognizable and beloved children’s television characters in history, Big Bird has been entertaining and educating children around the world for over 40 years. But few fans know about the man who brings Big Bird (and Oscar the Grouch) to life: Caroll Spinney. A delightfully sweet examination of the power of following your dreams, I Am Big Bird chronicles a fascinating life journey with epic loves and losses, those of a man who has brought joy to millions by never losing his childlike sense of wonder. Even at age 79, he is Big Bird. “If your heart...

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COWBOYS

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 3:30 PM (Fox Tower)
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COWBOYS

DIRECTOR: TOMISLAV MRŠI? - CROATIA

Based on a popular, award-winning Croatian play, Cowboys mixes social drama and dark comedy as it puts a fresh spin on a lovingly familiar cinematic scenario. Offered an opportunity to re-start the neglected community theatre in his hometown, big-city director Saša reluctantly returns to the dull industrial town of his youth. Without any experienced actors, Saša is forced to cast a group of eight lovable misfits, his troupe wildly unprepared for the rigors of show business. Settling on a classic Hollywood Western, the underdogs must come together and give it their all if they want to make it to...

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GHADI

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 3:30 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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GHADI

DIRECTOR: AMIN DORA - LEBANON

Lebanon’s Best Foreign Language Film Oscar submission is a gently barbed social satire about bigotry and redemption that unfolds in a traditional Lebanese coastal town. After having two daughters with his childhood sweetheart Lara, a beloved music instructor Leba has a son. Unfortunately, Ghadi is born with Down syndrome and the loud noises he makes trying to imitate his father’s singing start to take a toll on the neighbors. Without much understanding of the disability, the village people start calling the boy a “demon” and try to evict him from the town. Unwilling to send his son to an institution,...

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THE INVISIBLE FRONT

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 3:30 PM (World Trade Center Theater)
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THE INVISIBLE FRONT

DIRECTOR: JONAS OHMAN, VINCAS SROUGINIS - LITHUANIA

The Invisible Front was the code name used by the Soviet Union’s Interior Forces for the armed resistance in Lithuania, a key occupied territory. The resistance arose with hardly any outside support during World War II, continuing in various forms until the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. The film tells the story of one of the most significant anti-Soviet resistance movements through the words and experiences of its leaders, Juozas Luksa and his fellow Forest Brothers. Luksa risked his life to escape to Paris in 1948, joined up with Western intelligence agencies, wrote a memoir, and married...

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THE MAFIA ONLY KILLS IN SUMMER

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 3:30 PM (CINEMA 21)
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THE MAFIA ONLY KILLS IN SUMMER

DIRECTOR: PIF - ITALY

Pierfrancesco Diliberto (a renowned TV host and political comedian), better known as Pif, wrote, directed, and stars in this subversive, irreverent feature debut about Arturo, a young boy whose obsession with the Mafia’s casual presence in his city surpasses even his passion for Flora, the beautiful schoolmate who remains his main love interest until adulthood. Pif uses Arturo’s unrequited love story as the vehicle to narrate the most tragic events in Italy’s recent history, starting with the Cosa Nostra’s criminal actions in Sicily in the ’70s, which soon spread through the country. A brave and intelligent dark comedy with...

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MATEO

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 4 PM (Moreland Theater)
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MATEO

DIRECTOR: MARIA GAMBOA - COLOMBIA

Sixteen-year-old Mateo works with his uncle extorting local small business owners and is about to be expelled from school. The only way he can save himself is to join a theater group led by the town’s priest. Mateo’s uncle views this as an opportunity for Mateo to spy on the priest, who is extolling people to resist the extortion and the gangs of kids involved in petty crime. To his uncle’s surprise, Mateo begins to enjoy the eccentric bunch of performers and begins to fall for star pupil Ana. Trapped between two worlds, Mateo must choose which path he really...

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CONCRETE NIGHT

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 6 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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CONCRETE NIGHT

DIRECTOR: PIRJO HONKASALO - FINLAND

In a run-down Helsinki ghetto, 14-year-old Simo spends 24 hours with his dangerous older brother Ilkka as he prepares to go to prison. As they talk and drink and explore the concrete jungle they’re trapped in, both Simo and Ilkka find themselves pushed to the very edge by a city that wants to forget they exist. Based on the acclaimed cult novel of the same name, Concrete Night’s lustrous black and white images hauntingly portray a seething, urban underworld of discarded men and women who power big-city dreams. “Stunning to look at and chilling at its core . ....

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THE LIBERATOR

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 6 PM (Cinema 21)
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THE LIBERATOR

DIRECTOR: ALBERTO ARVELO - VENEZUELA

Arvelo’s lush film tells the epic personal story of Venezuelan military and political leader Simón Bolívar (1783–1830), who played a crucial role in freeing Latin America from the grip of the Spanish Empire. The caddish aristocrat-turned-revolutionary fought more than a hundred battles—never conquering, but “liberating”—that led to the founding of the first union of independent nations in Hispanic America. “Bolívar manages to rile the troops with passionate speeches on freedom, equality, and dignity—themes that resonate today be it in Ferguson, Missouri or Ukraine. . . . The writing here is as refined as it is moving.”—Los Angeles Times. In Spanish,...

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A YEAR IN CHAMPAGNE

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 6 PM (World Trade Center Theater)
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A YEAR IN CHAMPAGNE

DIRECTOR: DAVID KENNARD - UNITED STATES

Only sparkling wine produced within the boundaries of the Champagne region is truly “Champagne.” Wine importer Martine Saunier leads us on a tours of six Champagne makers to see how they make their product, from small independent producer Saint-Chamant to the illustrious houses of Gosset and Bollinger. Most Champagne is not just the product of a specific year and Signature house styles are creations that happen behind closed doors and in the miles of cellars beneath the countryside. Pull back the curtain and see how the people of a cold, tough land with a grim history of wars and conflict...

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DEAREST

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 6:30 PM (Fox Tower)
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DEAREST

DIRECTOR: PETER HO-SUN CHAN - HONG KONG

Based on a true story, Dearest is about the sensitivity, complexity, and indelible pain of child abduction. The lives of Shenzhen residents Wen-jun and his ex-wife Xiao-juan are thrown into turmoil when their young son goes missing. They join a support group active in exposing child abduction rings and, enduring several years of false-sightings and scams, finally find their son living with a foster mother. But their troubles are far from over. With delicacy and nuance, Chan explores the lasting guilt of having ‘lost’ a child; the difficulty of reintegration, and the discovery that an adopted child has been abducted....

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THE PRESIDENT

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 6:30 PM (Moreland Theater)
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THE PRESIDENT

DIRECTOR: MOHSEN MAKHMALBAF - GEORGIA

In this dark satire, The President and his family rule their land with an iron fist, enjoying lives of luxury and leisure at the expense of their population’s misery. When a coup d’état overthrows his brutal rule and the rest of his family flees, The President is suddenly left to care for his young grandson and is forced to escape. Now the country’s most wanted fugitive with a bounty on his head, they crisscross the country to reach a ship waiting for them. Posing as street musicians and traveling together with the people who suffered for years under the dictatorship,...

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FACTORY GIRL

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 8:30 PM (Whitsell Auditorium)
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FACTORY GIRL

DIRECTOR: MOHAMED KAHN - EGYPT

Hiyam, a young clothing factory worker, lives in a lower-middle-class neighborhood in Cairo. Under the spell of the factory’s new supervisor Salah, she believes love can transcend the class differences between them. When a pregnancy test kit is discovered, her family and friends accuse her of losing her virginity. Deciding to ignore them, she pays a high price in a society that can’t accept independent women. Following the changes that take place in her life over the course of the year, from falling in love to facing heartbreak, Factory Girl’s portrait of everyday female struggle earned the Critic’s Prize...

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MAIDAN

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 8:30 PM (WORLD TRADE CENTER)
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MAIDAN

DIRECTOR: SERGEI LOZNITSA - UKRAINE

Loznitsa, whose My Joy and In the Fog have screened in recent PIFFs, brings his distinctively vision to a remarkable eye-witness account of the protests in Kiev’s Independence (Maidan) Square, which led to the departure of pro-Russian president Viktor Yanukovych. Filmed between December 2013 and February 2014 in long, fixed-point takes, we watch the ebb and flow of actual events, from celebration and community to violent conflict with armed riot police. Without commentary and only occasional identifying inter-titles, Loznitsa paints a timeless portrait of protest and change that will grip anyone interested in what it takes to stand for...

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THE DARK VALLEY

Sun, Feb 15, 2015
at 8:45 PM (Cinema 21)
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THE DARK VALLEY

DIRECTOR: ANDREAS PROCHASKA - AUSTRIA

Greider, a lone traveler, arrives in a small village in the Alps. Initially, no one wants him to stay, especially Brenner, who keeps the community under tight control with his threatening ways. But a few gold coins sway the townsfolk, and they opt to shelter Greider for the winter. Soon a tragic accident leads to the death of one of Brenner’s beloved sons. But when a second son is mysteriously killed, it seems evident that more than coincidence is at play. “The hills are alive with the sound of gunfire in this alpine revenge drama, a superior genre piece...

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