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|FRIDAY, September 16, 2016 7:30 pm
Love & Friendship
2016, PG, 94 minutes, UK, in English
Beautiful young widow Lady Susan Vernon (Kate Beckinsale) visits to the estate of her in-laws to wait out the colorful rumors about her dalliances circulating through polite society. While ensconced there, she decides to secure a husband for herself and a future for her eligible but reluctant daughter, Frederica. In doing so she attracts the simultaneous attentions of the young, handsome Reginald DeCourcy, the rich and silly Sir James Martin and the divinely handsome, but married, Lord Manwaring, complicating matters severely. From The Guardian: “Here is a hilariously self-aware period comedy polished to a brilliant sheen. With its wistful witticisms, its airy contrast of town and country, Love & Friendship somehow feels like an undiscovered Oscar Wilde play.” Based on Jane Austen's epistolary novel, directed by Whit Stillman.
|FRIDAY, September 23, 2016 7:30 pm
2015, Unrated, 108 minutes, Spain, in Spanish with English subtitles
Childhood friends Julián and Tomás were once inseparable. Eventually, the two have lost sight of their friendship. While the divorced Julián remained in Spain where he has lived through the highs and lows of an acting career, the teacher Tomás emigrated to Canada, where he has built up a peaceful existence together with his job, his wife and his children. After a reunion one day in Madrid, their friendship is revived. Together the two spend a few wonderful days in the city full of nostalgic memories and unforgettable experiences knowing that this may be their last reunion because of Julián's complicated situation. 100% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, winner of 2016 Goya Awards (Spain's highest film awards): Best Picture/Director/Screenplay/Actor/Supporting Actor. (Julián is played by Ricardo Darín, star of Wild Tales, and Tomás is played by Javier Cámara, star of Living is Easy With Eyes Closed, both films screened during FLICS' 2015-16 season.)
|FRIDAY, October 21, 2016 7:30 pm
The Dark Horse
2016, R, 124 minutes, New Zealand, in English
The Dark Horse is based on the true story of Genesis 'Gen' Potini (Cliff Curtis), a Maori speed-chess champion seeking redemption and a new purpose in life despite his struggles with bipolar disorder. A former chess prodigy, Gen is brilliant and charismatic, bringing unusual, potent energy to a game most often played with quiet reserve. Upon his release from an institution, he is remanded into the custody of his older brother Ariki (Wayne Hapi), the leader of a rough street gang planning the initiation of Gen's reluctant teenage nephew Mana (James Rolleston). When Gen volunteers to coach the ragtag young members of the Eastern Knights chess club, Mana is inspired by his uncle's determination to bring hope to the children of the club and turn his troubled life around, while seeing it as a chance to possibly save his own. Winner of the New Zealand Films Awards: Best Film/Director/ Screenplay/Actor/Supporting Actor/Musical Score. 97% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
|FRIDAY, November 4, 2016 7:30 pm
The Bride/La Novia
2015, Unrated, 96 minutes, Spain, in Spanish with English subtitles
Based on Bodas de Sangre by Federico García Lorca, tells the story of a love triangle between two men and a woman. Two lovers are carried away by their passion, defying all moral and social rules and challenging their own judgment. The same day of her wedding, the bride and her lover escape on horseback to live their love. Their disobedience will have devastating consequences. La Novia is the nominee and winner of major cinematography awards.
|FRIDAY, November 11, 2016 7:30 pm
2015, PG-13, 109 minutes, China, in Mandarin with English subtitles
Lu Yanshi and Feng Wanyu are a devoted couple forced to separate when Lu, a college professor, is arrested and sent to a labor camp as a political prisoner during the Cultural Revolution, just as his wife is injured in an accident. Released during the last days of the Cultural Revolution, he finally returns home only to find that his beloved wife has amnesia and remembers little of her past. Unable to recognize Lu, she patiently waits for her husband's return. Coming Home is graceful and modestly scaled, forgoing the historical sweep and operatic grandeur of some of the director's previous work (Raise the Red Lantern, screened at FLICS). This film's focus is what the characters' response to the political and emotional story says about China’s understanding of its recent history. Peace, this movie suggests, may come at the price of memory. Directed by China's gifted director Yimou Zhang in a reunion with the great actress Gong Li.
|FRIDAY, December 2, 2016 7:30 pm
Women He's Undressed
2016, Unrated, 95 minutes, Australia, in English
During the Hollywood boom years the legendary Orry-Kelly was costume designer on an astonishing 282 motion pictures, designing for Marilyn Monroe, Bette Davis, Humphrey Bogart, Rosalind Russell and many more stars. Orry was as big a legend behind the scenes as the on-screen legends he adoringly dressed. Three times an Oscar winner, Orry was talented, daring, brash, bold and the toast of Hollywood, yet the thorn in the side of many studio heads. Women He's Undressed celebrates his story and includes interviews with actors Jane Fonda and Angela Lansbury, critic Leonard Maltin, costume designers Ann Roth, Catherine Martin, Colleen Atwood, Michael Wilkinson and Kim Barrett, plus family members and more. Directed by Gillian Armstrong (My Brilliant Career). 100% approval rating in Rotten Tomatoes.
|FRIDAY, January 13, 2017 7:30 pm
Song of Lahore
2015, PG, 82 minutes, Pakistan, in English/Urdu/Punjabi with English subtitles
In the skillfully crafted documentary Song of Lahore, a small group of Pakistani classical musicians travel to New York to regain a measure of the respect and acclaim their ancestors enjoyed as inheritors of a centuries-long tradition of artistic excellence. With the imposition of 'sharia law' in the late 1970s, Pakistani orchestras were disbanded and musicians vilified, even killed. But when an amazing recording of Dave Brubeck’s “Take Five” on traditional Pakistani instruments goes viral, East meets West in improvisational harmony. The musicians venture to New York City to perform their sitar-and-tabla reinterpretations of jazz standards with Wynton Marsalis at Lincoln Center. A fascinating study in cross-cultural pollination, Song of Lahore positively sings.
|FRIDAY, January 27, 2017 7:30 pm
2015, PG-13, 97 minutes, Turkey, in Turkish with English subtitles
The film is set in early summer in a village in Northern Turkey. Five free-spirited teenaged sisters splash about on the beach with their male classmates. Though their games are merely innocent fun, a neighbor passes by and reports what she considers to be illicit behavior to the girls' family. The family overreacts, removing all "instruments of corruption," like cell phones and computers, and essentially imprisoning the girls, subjecting them to endless lessons in housework in preparation for them to become brides. As the eldest sisters are married off, the younger ones bond together to avoid the same fate. The fierce love between them empowers them to rebel and chase a future where they can determine their own lives in Deniz Gamze Ergüven's directorial debut, a powerful portrait of female empowerment. Nominated for the best foreign-language film at 2016 Oscars.
|FRIDAY, February 10, 2017 7:30 pm
2016, Unrated, 72 minutes, U.S., in English
Toni trains with her brother at a community center in Cincinnati’s West End, but becomes fascinated by the dance team that also practices there. Enamored by their strength and confidence, Toni eventually joins the group, eagerly absorbing routines and mastering drills. As she discovers the joys of dance and of female camaraderie, she grapples with her individual identity in her new social world. Shortly after Toni joins the team, several of the girls have mysterious physical issues. The girls on the team soon embrace these changes as rites of passage. Apprehensive as she is caught between her need for control and her desire for acceptance, Toni must decide how far she will go to embody her new ideals. Great coming-of-age story with 96% approval on Rotten Tomatoes.
|Friday, February 24, 2017 7:30 pm
2014,Estonia, 87 min, R, Estonian and Russian with English subtitles
In the Ottoman province of Hijaz during World War I, a young Bedouin boy, Theeb, experiences a greatly hastened coming-of-age as he embarks on a perilous desert journey to guide a British officer to his secret destination. Our young protagonist uses his nascent survival skills to outwit potential enemies in Theeb, a classic adventure film of the best kind, and one that’s rarely seen these days. The movie is set in a period known as the Arab Revolt, when Arab nationalists sought independence from the Ottoman Turks. The story begins in a traditional Bedouin desert community, where a British Army officer and his Arab comrade appear out of nowhere, seeking a well near the Ottoman train tracks. Theeb is set at the moment when the Bedouin lifestyle was on the cusp of radical change. Nominated for the 2016 foreign-language Oscar.
|Friday, March 10, 2017 7:30 pm
2016, R, 100 minutes, Sri Lanka and France, in Tamil and French with English subtitles
The newest film from acclaimed director Jacques Audiard (A Prophet, screened at FLICS) is a gripping, human tale of survival. On the losing side of a civil war in Sri Lanka, a Tamil soldier, Dheepan, poses as the husband and father of two other refugees in order to escape their ravaged homeland. Arriving in France, the makeshift "family" sets about establishing a new life only to find themselves once again embroiled in violence on the mean streets of Paris. A heartrending saga of three strangers united by circumstance and struggle, Dheepan is both a tour-de-force thriller and a powerful depiction of the immigrant experience. Winner of the Palme d'Or at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival.
|FRIDAY, March 24, 2017 7:30 pm
2016, R, 127 minutes, France, in French with English subtitles
Set in 1921, near Paris . . . like every year, an array of music lovers gathers around a great cause at Marguerite Dumont's chateau. Nobody knows much about this woman except that she is rich and that her whole life is devoted to her passion. The hypocrite audience, always coming in for a good laugh, acts as if she was the diva she believes she is. When a young, provocative journalist decides to write a rave article on her latest performance, Marguerite believes even further in her talent. Despite her husband's reluctance, and with the help of a has-been divo, both funny and mean, she decides to train for her first recital in front of a crowd of complete strangers. Catherine Frot (playing Marguerite) won Best Actress at the 2016 Cesar Awards (France's most prestigious film honor) for her performance.
|FRIDAY, April 7, 2017 7:30 pm
2015, PG-13, 98 minutes, Germany, in German with English subtitles
A spellbinding mystery of identity, illusion and deception unfolds against the turmoil of post-World War II Germany in the stunning film from acclaimed director Christian Petzold (Barbara and Jerichow, both screened at FLICS). Nelly (Nina Hoss), a German-Jewish nightclub singer, has survived a concentration camp, but with her face disfigured by a bullet wound. After undergoing reconstructive surgery, Nelly emerges with a new face, one similar but different enough that her former husband, Johnny (Ronald Zehrfeld), doesn't recognize her. Rather than reveal herself, Nelly walks into a dangerous game of duplicity and disguise as she tries to figure out if the man she loves was the one who betrayed her to the Nazis. Evoking the shadows and haunted mood of post-war Berlin, Phoenix weaves a complex tale of a nation's tragedy and a woman's search for answers as it builds towards an unforgettable, heart-stopping climax. Nominee and winner of numerous international film awards.
|FRIDAY, April 21, 2017 7:30 pm
2015, R, 87 minutes, US, in English
In the high-stakes pursuit of big-wall climbing, the Shark's Fin on Mount Meru may be the ultimate prize. Sitting 21,000 feet above the sacred Ganges River in Northern India, the mountain's perversely stacked obstacles make it both a nightmare and an irresistible calling for some of the world's toughest climbers. In October 2008, renowned alpinists Conrad Anker, Jimmy Chin and Renan Ozturk arrived in India to tackle Meru. Their planned seven-day trip quickly declined into a 20-day odyssey in sub-zero temperatures with depleting food rations. Despite making it to within 100 meters of the elusive summit, their climb was not successful one. Heartbroken and defeated, the trio returned to their everyday lives, where the siren song of Meru continued to beckon. By September 2011, Anker had convinced his two friends to undertake the Shark's Fin once more, under even more extraordinary circumstances than their first attempt. Meru is the story of that journey, an expedition through nature's harshest elements and one's complicated inner demons.