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22 July

Recreating the sweep of history is familiar territory for Oscar®-nominated director Paul Greengrass, who previously made the riveting United 93 and Bloody Sunday (MVFF 2002). This time he applies his visceral immediacy to the aftermath of an attack—that of July 22, 2011, when a right-wing terrorist killed 77 Norwegians, bombing a government building in Oslo before going on a horrific murder spree at a summer youth camp. Democracy steels its resolve to follow the rule of law while reeling from the terrible loss in this drama told in the director’s signature style of naturalistic intimacy. Greengrass follows a recovering youth’s therapy and PTSD, a prime minister urging transparency, and the defense attorney committed to his client’s rights (but not his cause), meticulously entwining these threads to a powerful climax in a story about a nation dedicated to progress in the face of fear and hope in the shadow of hate.
Sat, Oct 6 7:00 PM
Tue, Oct 9 8:45 PM
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3 Faces (Se rokh)

In this fascinating, tender-hearted road movie, famed Iranian actress Behnaz Jafari, playing herself, journeys from her latest film set to a remote village. She’s responding to a desperate video from a young woman who dreams of becoming an actress, but whose family won’t let her leave home. Encounters that are both whimsical and delightfully curious—an old woman who’s trying out her grave for size; a stud bull, the ultimate symbol of virility, that’s fallen and broken his leg—provide a thematic backdrop for this exploration of women and men, tradition and freedom of choice. And at the helm on this journey is Behnaz’s driver, director Jafar Pahani who, as he did in Taxi (MVFF 2015), takes the wheel as a character in his fourth film since Iran banned him from making movies in 2011. In storytelling that’s deceptively simple, Panahi creates a richly layered and eloquent journey—right down to the last image.
Fri, Oct 5 6:30 PM
Sat, Oct 6 8:15 PM
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5@5 Boho Dance

“A camera pans the cocktail hour behind a blind of potted palms and finds a lady in a Paris dress with runs in her nylons.” Join us for these tales of fierce and fallible women, told by a fabulous international collection of female storytellers. In Melanie Zoey Weinstein’s soulful Spanko (US 2018, 12 min), a woman finds a new portal of sexual expression. Two young women find their long-time friendship at a crossroads in Emma Weinstein’s poignant Candace (US 2017, 9 min). While on an urban jog, a woman is confronted with a shocking discovery and a dangerous choice in Clare Cooney’s Runner (US 2017, 13 min). In Oskar Resetti’s Tsar Bomba (Switzerland 2018, 14 min), a single mother is forced to confront the latent toxic masculinity that is under her own roof. On the verge of moving to the west, a wife must confront her personal demons in Nasim Kiani and Mostafa Mostafavi’s disturbing and heartbreaking Oculus (Iran 2018, 18 min). And, finally, in Giovana
Thu, Oct 11 9:15 PM
Fri, Oct 12 6:15 PM
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5@5 Circle Game

“And the seasons they go round and round, and the painted ponies go up and down. We're captive on the carousel of time.” This year’s animated shorts program contains a diverse set of subjects and whimsical, macabre stories. Tupelo (US 2018, 4 min) and Good Advice (US 2018, 4 min), a pair of shorts from the ever-astounding and prolific Bill Plympton’s latest collection, The Modern Lives, offer the director’s signature animation style set to the music of former Black Crowes member Jackie Greene. Alexandra Lemay’s Freaks of Nurture (Canada 2017, 7 min) dives into the complex, overlooked struggle of mother versus daughter, while Héctor Dávila Cabrera’s Last Stop (Última estación) (Mexico 2017, 6 min) travels by bus to find chili-spiced chicken parts. Ri Crawford’s The Moon’s Milk (US 2018, 14 min) plunders the skies via a motley crew voiced by Tom Waits. Alexandra Castellanos Solís’ Poliangular (Mexico 2017, 8 min) morphs characters a
Fri, Oct 5 6:15 PM
Thu, Oct 11 6:15 PM
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5@5 Come to the Sunshine

“Share in the quiet of knowing. No need for telling you sometimes, when all the answers are so plainly showing.” Indulge in these real-life stories of the human spirit on display in all its marvelous variety. Brett Marty’s The Fiddler (US 2017, 10 min) introduces us to a Silicon Valley engineer whose medical diagnosis forces him to reshape his priorities. Ivete Lucas and Patrick Bresnan's Skip Day (US/UK 2018, 17 min) is an elegiac look at African American high schoolers reveling in their youth in the Florida Everglades. Amy Hill and Chris Riess’s Hula Girl (US 2018, 11 min) offers the inside scoop on one of the 1950s most enduring fads. In Ivan Cash’s Agent of Connection (US 2017, 4 min), one BART employee takes pride in being an ambassador of personal outreach. Gary Weimberg and Catherine Ryan’s Mothers and Daughters: 8 True Stories (US 2018, 6 min) offers a set of intimate portraits of that special family dynamic through all stages of life. Sara Ne
Fri, Oct 5 9:00 PM
Mon, Oct 8 6:15 PM
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5@5 Coyote

“There's no comprehending just how close to the bone and the skin and the eyes and the lips you can get, and still feel so alone.” In these powerful shorts, lone protagonists navigate treacherous emotional terrain as they reconcile their need for connection with the world around them. In Andrew Zox’s touching I Am My Own Mother (US 2018, 23 min), an African American woman seeks out her original birth mother, with some unexpected results. Animator Bill Plympton's The Modern Lives (US 2018, 3 min) uses a Jackie Greene song to depict a man beset by pressures to conform. In Andrés Gallegos Shoe Shiner (El limpia botas) (Chile 2018, 17 min), a young street orphan loses his shoeshine business and must prove his resourcefulness in a world of duplicitous adults. In Teal Greyhavens’s creepy Special Day (US 2018, 7 min), a bizarre family secret is revealed to a woman celebrating her 18th birthday. Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black) stars in Richard Raymond’s
Tue, Oct 9 9:15 PM
Wed, Oct 10 6:15 PM
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5@5 Daisy Summer Piper

“Stare into a mirror pool and laugh so princely vain. The skies become kaleidoscopes with no two turns the same.” Don’t miss this set of hilarious comedic shorts, ranging from broad hijinks to a little ham on wry. In Sharon Everitt’s Brentwood (US 2018, 12 min), Brent Spiner (aka Data) lampoons himself and his post-Star Trek legacy. Did we mention it’s a musical co-starring Peri Gilpin, LeVar Burton, and Doug Benson? A hotly-contested local election proves that sometimes every vote really does count in Fernand-Philippe Morin-Vargas’ Heads or Tails (Pile ou face) (Canada 2018, 15 min). Craig claims he can handle his weed but Craig's Pathetic Freakout (US 2018, 7 min), directed by Graham Parkes, proves he really, really can’t. In Gillian Barnes’ Are You Still Singing? (US 2018, 12 min), a struggling millennial/singing telegram artist is having a very bad day. Two film noir characters navigate a new landscape of socially conscious behavior in Ilys
Fri, Oct 12 9:00 PM
Sat, Oct 13 3:00 PM
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5@5 Eastern Rain

“Shadows by the fire slowly climb and fall. Kisses fade and leave no trace. Whispers vanish into space.” Tales of love highlight these shorts as each one depicts families facing a major turning point. An elderly couple lives a quiet existence, until the husband takes on one major project in Lucas H. Rossi’s The Dress of Myriam (O Vestido de Myriam) (Brazil 2017, 15 min), filmed in stark, stunning black and white. Dorian Tocker’s beautiful The Day That (US 2017, 26 min) is a poetic meditation on grief as the film follows an Islamic family in the US facing a terrible loss. In Machu Latorre's sweet The Loss (La perdida) (Spain 2018, 16 min), a widower confronts the new challenges of domesticity. Dark humor suffuses a tale of a family united—and fragmented—by the passing of the matriarch in Elizabeth Rose’s The Law of Averages (Canada 2017, 14 min). And Jenna Sofia’s Break the Camera (US 2018, 5 min) is a visually dynamic tribute to the film
Mon, Oct 8 9:15 PM
Tue, Oct 9 6:00 PM
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5@5 Festival Faves

Highlights from all the various MVFF41 shorts programs
Sun, Oct 14 7:45 PM
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5@5 The Way It Is

“I will show you what I know. Sometimes we will disagree. If we learn at all to grow. Then I have done my small duty.” In this peer-reviewed collection of youth-made films, today’s teen filmmakers show us just how much they know about cinema, storytelling, and the world as they see it. The Look (Max Retik, US 2018, 6 min), Goodbye Sam (Theo Taplitz, US 2017, 5 min), Backyard Bees (Will Noyce, US 2018, 4 min), Amrika (Nicole Bahar, US 2017, 4 min), Dance with Me (Isaac Karliner-Li, US 2018, 5 min), Perception (Lola Duenyas, US 2018, 2 min), The Last Straw (Julian Jordan, US 2018, 12 min), Experimenting with Animation (Paige Flaming, US 2018, 1 min), Why, God? (Nathan Ginter, US 2018, 8 min), Davy Jones Can’t Fly (Grant Anderson-Smith, US 2018, 7 min), Censored (Maggie Budzyna, US 2018, 3 min), One in Thirty: The Story of Henry Oster (Sarah Antabli, Tiffany Chang, Stephanie Cho, Sara Lowin, Gracie Sandman
Sun, Oct 7 11:00 AM
Fri, Oct 12 12:00 PM
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Active Cinema Hike

Get some fresh air and fresh ideas with filmmakers, friends, and cinephiles during this easy 3.5 mile hike to the ocean through beautiful terrain. Join festival staff and guests and exchange ideas and wisdom on filmmaking, filmmaker resources, activism, and strategies for action. Bring water and sublock, and wear good walking shoes. All are welcome! Meet at the Tennessee Valley trailhead parking lot.
Sat, Oct 13 10:00 AM
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Los adioses

From Mexican filmmaker Natalia Beristáin (She Doesn’t Want to Sleep Alone) comes this riveting biopic of Rosario Castellanos, one of the most important literary voices to emerge from 20th century Mexico. As a young woman in postwar Mexico City, well-read university student Rosario (Tessa Ia The Burning Plain) transcends the era’s patriarchal society to grow into an influential poet and author. A volatile romance with her college sweetheart, Ricardo Guerra (Daniel Giménez Cacho, Zama), provides a personal avenue for her explorations of feminism and femininity, but the relationship grows tense as Rosario’s career blossoms, leaving her with a difficult choice. Beautifully shot, superbly acted, and immensely thoughtful, Los adioses is an engrossing drama and an insightful portrait of a writer’s life. Actress Karina Gidi (Abel), who plays the older Rosario, deservedly took home the Best Actress trophy at the Ariel Awards, Mexico’s equivalent of the Academy
Tue, Oct 9 8:45 PM
Thu, Oct 11 12:00 PM
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Alifu the Prince/ss

The struggle between upholding tradition and moving forward in the modern world is beautifully depicted in this heartfelt tale of the only son of an indigenous tribal leader in present day Taiwan. Alifu (newcomer Utjung Tjakivalid, who won a Best New Talent award at the Taipei Film Festival) lives in two worlds: In Taipei, she’s a hairdresser with a chosen family saving up to have sexual reassignment surgery; in rural Taitung, she’s still known as the son of the ailing tribal leader who is unaware of Alifu’s other life and wishes to pass the reigns onto his only son. With high production values and a number of sensational drag performances, Alifu, the Prince/ss intercuts the title character’s story with intersecting tales of romance among her chosen family, painting a diverse portrait of LGBTQ life in Taiwan and capturing the universal feeling of longing for love and connection, whether those feelings are reciprocated or not.
Sat, Oct 13 4:45 PM
Sun, Oct 14 2:15 PM
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All Square

John (Michael Kelly, House of Cards) is on the skids. A former pro baseball pitcher who washed out of the majors, he now spends his days as a two-bit bookie chasing down deadbeats who don’t pay up and taking care of his infirm dad (Harris Yulin). Business is not what you’d call good, until John hooks up with an old high school flame (Pamela Adlon, Better Things). It turns out she has a son in Little League, whom he takes under his wing—and suddenly discovers that underage ball games are an untapped market for the degenerate gambling crowd. Part sad-sack character study and part outrageous, hysterical social satire, director John Hyams’ sports gem, which won the Audience Award at the SXSW Film Festival, plays like gangbusters—think Bad Santa meets The Bad News Bears. It’s the sort of beautifully warped father-figure comedy that leaves folks laughing and cringing in equal measures. You can bet on it.
Sun, Oct 7 8:15 PM
Mon, Oct 8 3:30 PM
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All These Small Moments

Howie Sheffield's road to adulthood is off to a rocky start. His arm is in a cast. His parent's growing tension hangs heavy in their New York brownstone. And he's infatuated with an alluring mystery woman who rides the same bus as him. As the title suggests, All These Small Moments carefully curates episodes from Howie's turbulent family life, his precarious dealings at school, and the interactions he manages with the mysterious blonde on the bus. These moments feel innately human and fresh thanks to an understated approach from first-time director Melissa Miller Costanzo.
Sat, Oct 6 8:15 PM
Sun, Oct 7 8:45 PM
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Amalia the Secretary (Amalia la secretaria)

At the crossroads of stoicism and paranoia, a rigid, rather cranky, Type A secretary named Amalia (the hilarious Marcela Benjumea) begins to unravel as carefree repairman Lázaro (Enrique Carriazo) waltzes into her life, introducing her (and effectively filling up her meticulous daily planner) to a world of cumbia, yoga, and spontaneous flirtation. As the CEO she loyally serves weighs the pros and cons of suicide versus reporting failing numbers at an impending board meeting, Amalia must choose whether to invest her high-functioning administrative energy into saving the company or launching a joie de vivre startup for herself and Lázaro, instead. With a close eye for detail, director Andrés Burgos captures the universal language of awkward office passive aggression, complete with clinking pens and shuffling paperwork, while juxtaposing the quotidian Colombian life of caring for elderly parents, commuting to work, and frequenting the local discoteca.
Thu, Oct 11 6:15 PM
Fri, Oct 12 3:00 PM
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El ángel

On the cusp of a sexual awakening, 19-year-old Carlitos (Lorenzo Ferro) meets a handsome classmate (Chino Darín), the son of a gun-toting father, and quickly graduates from adorable burglar to full-on sociopath. The titular “ángel” of Luis Ortega’s fourth feature, a box office smash in its native Argentina, is Carlos Robledo Puch, appearing barely post-pubescent with a soft white belly, golden ringlets, and a ruby-tinged pout—looking at odds with his starring role in a notorious 1970s crime spree. Bearing the artistic mark of Pedro Almodóvar (who co-produced the film), this true-crime tale deploys black humor, exuberant pop music, perfect period details, and some anachronistic art, providing subtle historical context in Argentina’s dictatorship and repressive machismo culture without excusing Carlitos’ behavior. Ferro and Darín deliver sensational turns as the criminal duo, with added support from the great Cecilia Roth (All About My Mother) and Mercedes Morán (La ciénaga
Sun, Oct 7 9:00 PM
Mon, Oct 8 8:45 PM
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Angst

Anxiety in teenagers and adolescents is an epidemic on the rise, affecting more youth and families than ever before, yet it is still deeply misunderstood and too often disregarded. Angst is the timely and powerful resource we need to spark important conversations about what we can do about it. Deeply personal interviews with children and young adults facing the challenges of managing their own anxiety—and its effects on their physical, emotional, and social lives—provide critical insight for adults to better understand how to help. Additional perspectives from mental health experts and researchers shed light on the causes and damaging cycles of stress. Eye-opening and empowering, Angst is a must-see documentary that gives voice to those suffering and shares tools for parents, teachers, siblings, medical professionals—truly everyone in the community—to address the anxiety affecting so many people we love. Screening followed by a community discussion featuring a panel of fi
Tue, Oct 9 6:30 PM
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