Posts Tagged 'Hannah Fidell'

MFF 2013 Programmer Tips #5: A TEACHER and MOTHER OF GEORGE

Maryland Film Festival 2013 begins tonight! Over the last week, our programmers have been counting down the days to MFF 2013 by highlighting a few titles for your consideration. Here’s a last pair of programmers’ tips to welcome in the festival, two dramas that premiered at Sundance 2013: Hannah Fidell’s A Teacher; and our closing-night film, Andrew Dosunmu’s Mother of George.

A TEACHER

A TEACHER


A TEACHER (HANNAH FIDELL)

Behind closed doors, a young woman working as a suburban Texas high-school teacher risks everything for an affair with a student. As their romance grows, each new element—text messages, photographs, increasingly public meeting places—carry reckless whiffs of both excitement and danger, but also send their lives further and further out of balance. Built around remarkable lead performances by Lindsay Burdge and Will Brittain, and avoiding expected beats at every turn, Hannah Fidell’s bold first feature A Teacher is a riveting psychological portrait that keeps viewers on the edge of their seats.

You have two chances to see A Teacher within MFF 2013, with director Hannah Fidell hosting! Read more: http://www.mdfilmfest.com/festival/film-guide/26

MOTHER OF GEORGE

MOTHER OF GEORGE

MOTHER OF GEORGE (ANDREW DOSUNMU)

Maryland Film Festival is proud to present as our 2013 Closing Night selection the first public screening of Andrew Dosunmu’s Mother of George since its premiere at Sundance in January. The story of a Nigerian couple in Brooklyn struggling to make their young marriage work while running a restaurant, Mother of George boasts gripping performances from Danai Gurira (of The Visitor, The Walking Dead, and Treme) and Isaach De Bankolé (whose distinguished filmography includes career-spanning collaborations with such directors as Claire Denis and Jim Jarmusch). Also of note is the film’s gorgeous cinematography from Bradford Young (of Pariah, Middle of Nowhere, and Dosunmu’s 2011 feature Restless City), who won the U.S. Dramatic Cinematography award at Sundance 2013 for his gorgeous work on both this film and David Lowery’s forthcoming Ain’t Them Bodies Saints.

Don’t miss Mother of George, our Closing Night film, with director Andrew Dosunmu and cinematographer Bradford Young presenting! Attendees also get access to MFF 2013’s Closing Night party! Read more: http://www.mdfilmfest.com/festival/film-guide/59

TWELVE MORE FEATURES ANNOUNCED FOR MARYLAND FILM FESTIVAL 2013!

Good Ol' Freda production still horizontal

GOOD OL’ FREDA

Maryland Film Festival is proud to announce a dozen more titles for our 2013 edition, bringing the total number of features revealed to 36 thus far.  Our fifteenth annual festival, which will take place May 8-12 in downtown Baltimore, has expanded to 5 days and will include approximately 50 features and 9 shorts programs.  We will also present a silent classic with an original score performed live by the Alloy Orchestra and a favorite film selected and hosted by legendary director John Waters!

The diverse round of titles announced today includes work from Finland, Mexico, Austria, and Israel, and such titles as Zach Clark’s holiday-themed, darkly comic White Reindeer; Alex Winter’s riveting look at the rise and fall of Napster, Downloaded; Jessica Oreck’s experiential documentary about a family of reindeer herders, Aatsinki; and Calvin Reeder’s surreal, horror-tinged mindbender about a mysterious loner, The Rambler.

More MFF 2013 lineup announcements are coming soon! If you haven’t seen them yet, make sure to check the 24 features we announced last week! For all the latest information, continue to visit this blog, and follow us at facebook.com/MarylandFilmFestival and on Twitter, @MdFilmFestival.

Today’s announced features for Maryland Film Festival 2013 are:

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16 ACRES

16 Acres (Richard Hankin) From the editor and co-producer of Capturing the Friedmans comes this riveting and nuanced documentary look at the rebuilding of Ground Zero—one of the most architecturally, politically, and emotionally complex urban renewal projects in history.

AATSINKI_[Jessica_Oreck]1

AATSINKI: THE STORY OF ARCTIC COWBOYS

Aatsinki: The Story of Arctic Cowboys (Jessica Oreck) One year in the life of a family of reindeer herders in Finnish Lapland yields an immersive study of hard work, hard earned leisure, and an intricate bond between man and nature. From the director of Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo.

Before You Know It (P J Raval) This observational documentary raises the curtain on a profoundly neglected segment of the LGBT community, its senior population, as three gay men residing in very different regions of the U.S. face new life challenges.

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BLUEBIRD

Bluebird (Lance Edmands) In the frozen woods of an isolated Maine logging town, one woman’s tragic mistake shatters the balance of the community, resulting in profound and unexpected consequences.

Downloaded (Alex Winter) With remarkable insight and access, this documentary tells the story of the rise and fall of Napster, taking a close look at the internet mavericks and musicians involved and the lasting global impact of peer-to-peer file sharing.

Here_Comes_The_Devil

HERE COMES THE DEVIL

Here Comes the Devil  (Adrián García Bogliano) From Mexico comes this horror film concerning disappeared children and panicked parents, offering ever-escalating thrills as it heads to increasingly bloody, diabolical, and even psychedelic territory.

Fill the Void (Rama Burshtein) This drama set in Tel Aviv’s Orthodox community centers around 18-year-old Shira, who faces unexpected life challenges when her older sister dies.

Good Ol’ Freda (Ryan White) Freda Kelly was just a shy Liverpudlian teenager when she was asked to work for a local band hoping to make it big. That band was The Beatles, and Freda was their devoted secretary and friend for 11 years; this documentary tells her story—and the story of the world’s most famous band through her eyes.

MH_Guard

MUSEUM HOURS

Museum Hours (Jem Cohen) From the director of Benjamin Smoke and Instrument comes this gentle and expertly crafted drama about a Vienna museum guard and the friendship he forms with a woman visiting town to care for a sick friend.

THE RAMBLER_Lindsay Pulsipher and Dermot Mulroney shooting_photo by Juliana Halvorson

THE RAMBLER

The Rambler (Calvin Reeder) Dermot Mulroney, Lindsay Pulsipher, and Natasha Lyonne star in the latest psychotronic vision from the director of The Oregonian, in which a mysterious loner, newly released from prison, sets out on a journey filled with bizarre characters and warped experiences.

We Always Lie to Strangers (AJ Schnack and David Wilson) A documentary story of family, community, music and tradition, built over five years and set against the backdrop of Branson, Missouri, one of the biggest tourist destinations in America.

WHITE REINDEER STILL 1

WHITE REINDEER

White Reindeer (Zach Clark) After an unexpected tragedy, Suzanne searches for the true meaning of Christmas during one sad, strange December in suburban Virginia. From the director of Vacation! and Modern Love Is Automatic.

Previously Announced Titles for 2013:

12 O’CLOCK BOYS (Lotfy Nathan)

AFTER TILLER (Martha Shane and Lana Wilson)

AUGUSTINE (Alice Winocour)

BERBERIAN SOUND STUDIO (Peter Strickland)

COMPUTER CHESS (Andrew Bujalski)

DRINKING BUDDIES (Joe Swanberg)

HIT & STAY (Joe Tropea and Skizz Cyzyk)

I AM DIVINE (Jeffrey Schwarz)

I USED TO BE DARKER (Matt Porterfield)

IF WE SHOUT LOUD ENOUGH (Gabriel DeLoach and Zach Keifer)

IT FELT LIKE LOVE (Eliza Hittman)

LEVIATHAN (Lucien Castaing-Taylor and Véréna Paravel)

THE PERVERT’S GUIDE TO IDEOLOGY (Sophie Fiennes)

PIT STOP (Yen Tan)

POST TENEBRAS LUX (Carlos Reygadas)

PRINCE AVALANCHE (David Gordon Green)

SWIM LITTLE FISH SWIM (Lola Bessis and Ruben Amar)

A TEACHER (Hannah Fidell)

THIS IS MARTIN BONNER (Chad Hartigan)

TOUCHY FEELY (Lynn Shelton)

V/H/S/2 (omnibus)

WATCHTOWER (Pelin Esmer)

WILLOW CREEK (Bobcat Goldthwait)

ZERO CHARISMA (Katie Graham and Andrew Matthews)

MARYLAND FILM FESTIVAL 2013 LINEUP ANNOUNCEMENTS CONTINUE

iamdivine_Lynn_Davis

I AM DIVINE

Maryland Film Festival continues to announce titles for its fifteenth annual edition today, unveiling a dozen more feature films in their 2013 lineup.  Within this second round of announced titles are two highly anticipated documentaries with Baltimore subjects, Jeffrey Schwarz’s loving and definitive portrait I Am Divine (photo above), and Joe Tropea and Skizz Cyzyk’s Catonsville Nine documentary Hit & Stay; a wide range of international films including Augustine (France), Berberian Sound Studio (UK), Post Tenebras Lux (Mexico), and Watchtower (Turkey); Sundance 2013 breakthrough dramas A Teacher and This Is Martin Bonner; and the latest from David Gordon Green, Prince Avalanche.

MFF 2013 will take place May 8-12 in downtown Baltimore, and lineup announcements will continue next week. Together with the titles revealed in a first announcement Tuesday, today’s news brings the total of announced MFF 2013 titles thus far to twenty-four.

More lineup announcements are coming soon! For all the latest information, continue to visit this blog, and follow us on Facebook and on Twitter, @MdFilmFestival.

The latest announced titles for MFF 2013 are:

Photo still from AUGUSTINE.

AUGUSTINE

Augustine (Alice Winocour) Set in Belle Epoque France, Alice Winocour’s provocative period piece chronicles the sexual awakening of a female patient in a mental hospital for women suffering from “hysteria.”

Berberian Sound Studio (Peter Strickland) In the 1970s, a gifted but reclusive British sound engineer begins having ever-escalating strange experiences the mirror that Italian horror film on which he’s working.

Drinking Buddies (Joe Swanberg) Kate and Luke form a close bond working together at a Chicago craft brewery—but as the line between friendship and romance gets blurry, cracks begin to show, both in the workplace and their personal lives. Starring Olivia Wilde, Anna Kendrick, Jake Johnson, and Ron Livingston.

Photo still from Skizz Czyzk and Joe Tropea's HIT & STAY.

HIT & STAY

Hit & Stay (Joe Tropea and Skizz Cyzyk) This Baltimore-made documentary tells the story of the radical priests, nuns, and everyday people who comprised the Baltimore Four and the Catonsville Nine, risking prison to challenge U.S. military involvement in Vietnam.

I Am Divine (Jeffrey Schwarz) From the director of Vito comes the definitive documentary look at actor, singer, and drag icon Harris Glenn Milstead, better known as Divine; featuring extensive interviews with John Waters and many others who knew, loved, and worked with Divine.

Leviathan (Lucien Castaing-Taylor and Véréna Paravel) Functioning as both an immersive experiential documentary about modern commercial fishing and a feature-length experimental film, Leviathan offers an explosive and chaotic sensory experience like no other.

Photo still from POST TENEBRAS LUX.

POST TENEBRAS LUX

Post Tenebras Lux (Carlos Reygadas) The director of challenging art-house favorites Battle in Heaven and Silent Light returns with his most personal and transgressive film yet, a masterful meditation on natural wonder, sudden violence, and the human condition.

Photo still from PRINCE AVALANCHE.

PRINCE AVALANCHE

Prince Avalanche (David Gordon Green) Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch star as highway workers with a bumpy history paired for a project in a remote location in this charming blend of comedy and drama from the director of George Washington and Pineapple Express.

Photo still from SWIM LITTLE FISH SWIM.

SWIM LITTLE FISH SWIM

Swim Little Fish Swim (Lola Bessis and Ruben Amar) In this offbeat French/U.S. co-production with notes of deadpan comedy and romance, hardworking Mary’s frustration with her idealistic husband Leeward mounts when a vivacious young French woman enters their life.

Photo still from Hannah Fiddell's A TEACHER.

A TEACHER

A Teacher (Hannah Fidell) Diana, a young suburban high-school teacher, seems to be leading a pleasant, if placid, life—but behind closed doors, she’s risking it all for an affair with one of her students.

This Is Martin Bonner (Chad Hartigan) Fifty-something Martin Bonner looks for a new beginning in Reno, working with released prisoners for a faith-based organization. This subtle and moving character study won the Sundance 2013 Best of Next Audience Award.

Photo still from WATCHTOWER.

WATCHTOWER

Watchtower (Pelin Esmer) Plagued by tragedy and guilt, a man takes a job in a remote corner of Turkey—but the solitary new life he builds for himself is challenged by the arrival of a young woman, also running from her past.

SXSW Update #3 – Close of SXSW 2013; Film Festival Impact

Neighboring Stateside and Paramount Theaters on Congress Avenue during SXSW 2013.  Photo by Eric Allen Hatch.

Neighboring Stateside and Paramount Theaters on Congress Avenue during SXSW 2013. Photo by Eric Allen Hatch.

The 2013 SXSW Film Festival came to a close this weekend, having screened, as head honcho Janet Pierson noted at the closing night awards ceremony, 133 features and 10 shorts programs. Considering that SXSW sets limits on how many titles they repeat from other festivals like Sundance, making the majority of SXSW’s features U.S. or even world premieres, this is a staggering figure. We’re still comparing notes and favorites, but I’ve now seen at least 40 of these features, and with MFF’s programming administrator J. Scott Braid and screening committee member Eric Cotten also in attendance, we’ve been able to cover the overwhelming majority of SXSW’s offerings for MFF 2013 programming consideration.

To attend SXSW is also to see the incomparable impact a major film festival has on its hometown’s year-round film scene. I’d estimate that somewhere between a dozen and twenty of SXSW’s features were Texas-shot. That includes some of the best narrative films in the lineup, such as Andrew Bujalski’s sly and utterly unique Computer Chess (which I discussed at greater length on the blog last week), Yen Tan’s poignant small-town romantic drama Pit Stop, and Hannah Fidell’s riveting and tense psychological portrait A Teacher.

In a city that boasts not only major film festivals such as SXSW, the genre-honoring Fantastic Fest, and the screenwriter-oriented Austin Film Festival, but also active year-round programming courtesy of the Austin Film Society, the historic Paramount Theater, and the legendary Alamo Drafthouses, it’s no surprise that Austin’s film scene is flourishing. Over the past several decades, it’s emerged as one of the only U.S. cities that can be said to rival L.A. and NYC for diverse film production, smart and lively criticism, and enthusiastic, highly film-literate audiences.

It’s this magnitude of impact Maryland Film Festival would like to have in Baltimore—building not just audiences, but also helping cultivate a local filmmaking community as active and vibrant as that of a city like Austin, not to mention one that keeps pace with the explosions in music and visual art our city has seen in recent years. Watch this space for MFF 2013 announcements; we think you’ll agree that a Baltimore filmmaking explosion is already underway.

Eric Allen Hatch, MFF Director of Programming