Sequoia 1 Sun, Oct 6, 2019 5:00 PM
Rafael 1 Mon, Oct 7, 2019 4:00 PM
Film Info
Section:US Cinema
Mind the Gap
Big Night
Running Time:113 min.
Director:Chinonye Chukwu
Producer:Peter Wong
Bronwyn Cornelius
Timur Bekbosunov
Julian Cautherley
Screenwriter:Chinonye Chukwu
Cinematographer:Eric Branco
Editor:Phyllis Housen
Cast:Alfre Woodard
Richard Schiff
Wendell Pierce
Dennis Haskins
Print Source:Neon
Note Writer:David Fear


TRIBUTE TO ALFRE WOODARD: A death penalty story that doubles as a devastating character study, writer-director Chinonye Chukwu’s extraordinary drama—the well-deserved Grand Prize winner at Sundance—opens with Warden Bernadine Williams (Alfre Woodard in a subtle tour-de-force performance) presiding over the execution of a convict. A seasoned professional with a dozen executions to her name, Bernadine remains unfazed and collected. However, with her life at home with her husband (Wendell Pierce, The Wire) feeling hollow, her off-hours are spent drinking until she’s numb. Her life’s routine becomes irrevocably disrupted by the arrival of the next death row inmate—a man named Anthony Woods (Aldis Hodge, Hidden Figures) who is convicted of killing a cop and swears by his innocence—which sends Bernadine toward her inevitable breaking point. Hardly a social justice handwringer, the film expertly examines the moral toll capital punishment takes on everyone involved—from lawyers to activists, family members to the executioner. But best of all, Clemency confirms Alfre Woodard’s status as both a national treasure and one of the greatest actors working today.

Our Tribute program features an onstage conversation with Alfre Woodard and Chinonye Chukwu, a screening of Clemency, and the presentation of the MVFF Award.

EXPECTED GUESTS: Actor Alfre Woodard, Director Chinonye Chukwu

Sunday, October 6, 5:00pm | CinéArts Sequoia
Program & Reception: $75 member | $85 general
Program Only: $40 member | $45 general
Post-screening Reception: Outdoor Art Club
1 W. Blithedale, Mill Valley

Regular Screening: Monday, Oct 7, 4:00pm Rafael

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Additional Information

Chinonye Chukwu is a screenwriter and director. Clemency (2019), her second feature film, won the Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize – Dramatic and a place on the 2017 Athena List, a designation that recognizes excellent scripts featuring female protagonists. Chukwu has also received the prestigious Princess Grace Award Film Graduate Scholarship and Princeton University’s Hodder Fellowship. Her debut feature film, alaskaLand (2012), has screened globally and been released on several digital and video-on-demand platforms.