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August (Agosto)

Set in the Gibara region of Cuba where the director grew up and using a cast of both professional and non-professional actors, this quietly affecting directorial debut from Armando Capó is at once a coming-of-age story and a reflection of Cuba’s turbulent history. Carlos, Elena, and Mandy are teenagers living in a rural Cuba. After school gets out for the summer, they wander around, go to the beach, form crushes and misunderstandings—like teenagers everywhere. But their idyllic summer is about to be overwhelmed by forces they can’t control. It’s 1994, and Cuba is beset by a wave of emigration due to economic and social instability. The balseros, or rafters, are leaving in droves, some in homemade vessels—many perishing before they make it to their destinations. Carlos' poor yet close-knit family life and comfortable social milieu will be forever changed by the forces of history that threaten to engulf his island home.
Fri, Oct 4 3:45 PM
Sat, Oct 5 1:30 PM
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Bacurau

A feverish mixture of thriller, science fiction, western, and political satire, Bacurau is, above all, an angry commentary on Brazil’s shifting political fortunes—albeit one that makes room for Spandau Ballet tunes. Co-directed by Kleber Mendonça Filho (Aquarius, MVFF 2016) and Juliano Dornelles, the movie chronicles the surreal happenings that occur in a small rural town—which has vanished from GPS, an indication of the off-the-map peculiarity that follows. This ensemble piece, featuring everyone from Aquarius star Sônia Braga to genre legend Udo Kier, begins as a lament for a community cut off from society but soon morphs into a life-or-death struggle, pitting greedy outsiders against fiercely determined locals. The clash of tones and styles electrifies, but what ties this Cannes Jury Prize winner together is its sense of outrage: at globalization, at those who try to erase indigenous peoples, at an encroaching modern world that too often destroys everything in i
Mon, Oct 7 8:15 PM
Tue, Oct 8 9:00 PM
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De Lo Mio

Two sisters from the US journey to Santiago, Dominican Republic, to reunite with their estranged brother and clear out their grandmother’s house in this affecting family drama. The island nation is not just the story’s backdrop but also its cultural core as the family races against a looming deadline to the clear the property for sale. The house becomes a center of tension, amplified by the past, family dynamics, and cultural differences between the high-spirited, New York-raised sisters, Rita (Sasha Merci) and Carolina (Darlene Demorizi), and older, more serious Dante (Héctor Aníbal), who stayed behind in the Dominican Republic. As the siblings navigate their complex relationship what develops is a thoughtful portrait of what it means to grow up and let go. Diana Peralta’s stunning debut film is a beautiful meditation on familial ties, third culture struggles, and how we define where home is.
Fri, Oct 11 6:15 PM
Sat, Oct 12 7:30 PM
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Ema

Premiering in competition at this year’s Venice Film Festival, Pablo Larraín’s latest provocation Ema is a modern-day melodrama surrounding a crisis of understanding in how we define family in today’s shifting world. Expressed mostly through exhilarating contemporary reggaetón dance and based on the lives of real-life street dancers, the story oscillates around an unraveling couple dealing with the aftermath of an adoption that goes awry. Gael García Bernal (MVFF Award 2016) plays the choreographer of a volatile dance company while Mariana Di Girolamo makes a stunning screen debut as his wife, a schoolteacher by day and a wildly self-possessed dancer by night.
Tue, Oct 8 8:30 PM
Wed, Oct 9 11:15 AM
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The Gasoline Thieves (Huachicolero)

From the very first moments—when two huachicoleros, or gasoline thieves, murder a rival poacher—an unrelenting air of violence and dread hangs over Edgar Nito’s riveting feature debut. Set against a backdrop of petrol shortages rigged by corrupt politicians, the story centers on awkward, 14-year-old Lalo—played with unguarded sweetness by newcomer Eduardo Banda—who thinks the only way to woo his crush is to buy her a smartphone. Yet this simple desire to impress a pretty girl crashes against the poverty that defines Mexican village life, and it becomes the fulcrum for tragedy when Lalo agrees to join the local huachicoleros in order to get money. The gritty, unvarnished filmmaking is controlled, quiet, and intimate: You can smell the dust and gasoline, feel the longing and desperation, almost squint beneath the unromantic sun or into harsh headlights stabbing the night, framing shadowy silhouettes. Ultimately, Nito captures the heartbreaking ordinariness of decent people
Fri, Oct 4 6:00 PM
Sat, Oct 5 7:30 PM
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Inmate #1: The Rise of Danny Trejo

SPECIAL PREMIERE: With nearly 400—and counting!—film and television credits since 1985, Danny Trejo is one of the most prolific and recognizable actors around. But his remarkable ascent to beloved Hollywood hero notorious for tough guy roles in Heat, Breaking Bad, and the Machete series was as hard-earned as it was unexpected. In this moving, funny, and revealing portrait, Trejo candidly traces his own sensational out-of-the-ashes journey from troubled kid growing up in Pacoima, CA, to teenage drug addict and San Quentin prison inmate, to ubiquitous film star, restaurateur, philanthropist, and role model. With testimonials from his most ardent champions, including his children, friends, and famous colleagues (including Robert Rodriguez, Cheech Marin, and Michelle Rodriguez), Brett Harvey’s affecting profile is as raw and intimate as it is a buoyant celebration of an exceptional life, telling a story of unlikely survival, rare humility, and a profound transformation
Sun, Oct 6 2:30 PM2:30 PM2:30 PM
Sat, Oct 12 8:15 PM
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The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão (A Vida Invisível de Eurídice Gusmão)

Visually sumptuous and precisely detailed, Karim Aïnouz's moving melodrama details the life of two sisters in 1950s Rio. In their youth, Guida and Eurídice are inseparable. But when Guida ends up pregnant, their father kicks the young woman out as she bellows, "You'll never see me again." Talented pianist Eurídice, meanwhile, hopes for a spot at a prestigious conservatory, but she too finds her dreams thwarted by a system that discourages female progress. The tragic heart of the film, which shifts back and forth between the sisters' respective lives, is that each believes that the other is living out her dreams abroad. Instead, they both remain in Rio de Janeiro, battling the oppressive patriarchy that prevents either of them from reaching their ambitions.
Sun, Oct 6 8:30 PM
Mon, Oct 7 8:45 PM
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Marighella

Carlos Marighella remains one of Brazil's most divisive historical figures: a politician, writer, and Marxist insurrectionist. During the military coup of 1964 and subsequent right-wing dictatorship, Marighella fought against the destruction of human rights, leaving his wife and child behind to pursue a revolution in the streets that would ultimately lead to his bloody assassination. Marighella is a searing biopic depicting the guerilla fighter's rise to public enemy number one as a brutal government hunts him down. The raw central performance by charismatic actor and musician Seu Jorge (The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou) anchors the drama with an emotional intensity. The directorial debut of acclaimed actor Wagner Moura (best known as Pablo Escobar on Narcos), Marighella is a punchy, no-holds-barred film that is already controversial in its native Brazil. Amidst the current re-ascendance of far-right authoritarianism, Marighella’s message is both ur
Fri, Oct 4 8:45 PM
Sat, Oct 5 7:00 PM
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Pain and Glory (Dolor y gloria)

Cinema has no shortage of movies about filmmakers looking back on their life and work, but few are as profoundly bittersweet as Pain and Glory, two-time Oscar® winner Pedro Almodóvar’s greatest film in years. Almodóvar veteran Antonio Banderas won the Best Actor prize at the Cannes Film Festival for his career-defining performance as Salvador Mallo, a famed director who suspects his best years are behind him. What follows is a lovely, poignant, and sometimes pointed series of reminiscences as Salvador reexamines the crucial moments and individuals—including his adoring mother in a terrific turn from another Almodóvar regular, Penélope Cruz—that defined him. Drawing comparisons to reflexive masterpieces such as Fellini’s , Pain and Glory wrestles with big picture quandaries about the nature of art and the artist, while remaining deeply personal and candid. Salvador may be faltering, but the same certainly can’t be said for the two artists marvelously bringing him
Sun, Oct 6 8:15 PM
Tue, Oct 8 2:30 PM
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The Prince (El príncipe)

Jaime is an orphaned teenager in 1970s Chile, sent to prison after a rash act of violence. His mouth set in defiance and fear, Jaime hardly speaks at first, obeying the commands of an older cellmate called The Stud—played with smoldering ferocity by MVFF regular Alfredo Castro (Museo, MVFF 2018; Neruda, MVFF 2016)—who takes Jaime under his wing and nicknames him The Prince. As their bond deepens, the erotically charged world of the prison takes on a steamy air of Derek Jarman by way of Jean Genet, alternating moments of brutality and tenderness among the shifting power games of this aggressive machismo society. Amid an economy of bartered polyester garments and tango guitar lessons, Jaime finds his voice and must confront whether he’s more truly himself behind bars than he ever was in the stifling life he left behind. The Prince opens and closes in blood, but at its beating heart, it’s an unconventional—and very sexy—love story.
Sun, Oct 6 5:45 PM
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Serendipity

Women’s bodies and fertility are the themes that knit together multidisciplinary artist Prune Nourry’s work in a career that has traversed the globe with sculptural installations, solo shows, and performances (among them Terracotta Daughters, Holy Daughters, Holy River, and Contemporary Archeology). Those themes remain, but Nourry turns her gaze inward following her breast cancer diagnosis in this, her feature filmmaking debut. Like Nourry’s previous oeuvre, Serendipity plays with genre—blending art film, first-person documentary, and nonfiction journey—while also considering her body of work from a different perspective, a view in which her physical body becomes the framework literally and metaphorically. An unfailing collector of images and ephemeral moments, now the artist is both moment and image, a circumstance wherein the patient is artist, artist is patient, and art becomes medicine. "When you are ill, you realize that health is everything," sa
Mon, Oct 7 7:00 PM
Fri, Oct 11 3:15 PM
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Song Without a Name (Canción sin nombre)

An indigenous woman living outside Lima, Peru, pregnant Georgina sells potatoes in the market and performs in a traditional dance troupe with her partner. She’s lured to the capital to give birth after hearing a radio announcement about a clinic there, a come-on which proves too good to be true when her newborn is stolen from her. Desperate to find her daughter and ignored by the police, a distraught Georgina joins forces with Pedro, a newspaper reporter hiding secrets of his own. In an effort to discover the truth, Georgina and Pedro collect testimonials from the mothers of other kidnapped children and uncover corruption at the highest levels of government. Based on actual events in 1980s Peru, director Melina León based her debut feature on a story first reported by her father, Ismael. This astonishing drama, which premiered at Cannes earlier this year, is filmed in lustrous black and white and features a brooding score by Pauchi Sasaki.
Tue, Oct 8 6:15 PM
Wed, Oct 9 1:00 PM
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¡Viva los Niños!

Nonverbal and in Spanish with English subtitles A celebration of Spanish-language and Latin American films and stories, MVFF’s ¡Viva el Cine! initiative is also a family affair, as illustrated by this special collection of kid-centric short films from Mexico, Spain, Guatemala, and Colombia. For and about families of all kinds, this multigenerational medley is accessible for both Spanish and English speakers alike. In Annie & Carola: My Best Friend (Annie y Carola. Mi mejor amiga) (Myriam Ballesteros, Spain 2018, 4 min), a highly animated (in both senses of the word) but lonely girl decides to build her own BFF in robot form. The biggest challenge for Gonzalo in 3 Feet (3 pies) (Giselle Geney, Colombia 2018, 14 min) is how to get to school with both his soccer ball and two clean shoes. In the documentary Ari and the Day of the Dead (Andre Hörmann, Germany 2018, 25 min), young Ari prepares for the celebration of her recently deceased grandfather,
Sun, Oct 6 11:00 AM
Sun, Oct 13 1:45 PM
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Windows on the World

MEMBER SCREENING: On the morning of September 11th, 2001, Fernando and his family in Mexico watch the collapse of the World Trade Center in shock: Balthazar, the patriarch of the family, is an undocumented worker at the restaurant on the top floor. With no word from him for two weeks, the family begins the grieving process until Fernando's mother catches a glimpse of Balthazar on the news one day. Determined to find out what happened to his father, Fernando begins a perilous journey to New York City, coming face-to-face with the harsh realities of being an immigrant in America. As he searches for answers, Fernando discovers romance and humanity in some unlikely places. Michael D. Olmos' Windows on the World is a stirring examination of social themes that are particularly relevant today, made all the more compelling by the captivating performances of Ryan Guzman (Everybody Wants Some!!, Papi Chulo) as Fernando and esteemed actor Edward James Olmos as Balthazar.
Mon, Oct 7 2:30 PM2:30 PM
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