2018 Martha’s Vineyard International Film Festival Lineup

MVIFF Opening ReceptionThe 2018 MV International Film Festival promises to excite and entertain with stories that celebrate films and cultures of the world with subjects that will touch hearts and souls. This year’s line-up of films relay stories about the resilience and strength of the human spirit, of transformative love, and the importance of roots, family, and community.

Our official OPENING NIGHT GALA, September 6th begins on the picturesque shores of Ferry Boat Pond adjacent to the Tisbury Market Place, with the ocean across the way – painting a dazzling tableau under a glittering tented party; a peaceful gathering with Mexican inspired appetizers, libations, live music and a spectacular sunset…

We’ll be serving wines, beer ( Festival sponsor OUR MARKET) and Mexican inspired appetizers (provided by Sarah Hibler) while Eric Johnson and his jazz trio perform under the tent.  After the reception, guests will be invited to make their way to the Film Center for a special OPENING NIGHT screening (see below). The film begins at 8:00 pm.

Alejandro (Luis Deveze), a native of León but a long-time LA resident and college professor is stranded in Tijuana on New Year’s Eve. As the celebrations progress it unleashes a roller coaster of emotions and inner conflicts in him about romance, belief, and identity. Shot guerilla-style by a crew of two over an actual New Year’s Eve, the film fuses fact and fiction, with a mix of professional and amateur actors in the cast, improvising in both Spanish and English.

 

 

 

 

CLOSING NIGHT EVENT

This comedy begins when a man wakes up with a low ringing sound in his ears and discovers a cryptic note on his fridge “Your friend Luigi has died. P.S. I took the car.” He sets out to discover who this “Luigi” is and finds it’s one of those days that might change your life forever.

Winner of over a dozen film festival awards, including Best Film at the Venice Film Festival and Monte-Carlo Comedy Film Festival.

“Classically dark humor with a postmodern hero.” —Cheri Passell, ILoveItalianMovies.com

Extend the Italian experience of the film and join us for our Closing Night Party at LA SOFFITTA restaurant at   83 Main Street.   Enjoy hardy Italian buffet, wines, and beer from Italy and live music/singing by David Hannon and his quartet (playing the Frank Sinatra songbook)

 

 

Two Short Film Programs this year!

Among the eleven finalists of the Short Films Juried Competition on Saturday, September 8th, are films from five countries. The winner of Best Overall Short will be announced at the conclusion of the program.

TO SEE OUR SHORT FILM COMPETITION’S 11 FINALISTS CLICK HERE

FOR INFORMATION ON THE ANIMATION SHORTS SHOWCASE CLICK HERE

TO DOWNLOAD our 2018 MVIFF PROGRAM GUIDE (PDF) — CLICK THIS LINK  or look for it in the August 30th MV Times newspaper as a pull-out printed supplement. 

Click here to purchase an ALL-ACCESS PASS FESTIVAL PASS

LISTED BELOW IS A COMPLETE LISTING OF OUR 2018 MVIFF FEATURE FILMS

PLEASE CLICK ON THE NAME OF AN INDIVIDUAL FILM TO SEE MORE DETAILS, TRAILERS, AND TO PURCHASE TICKETS FOR AN INDIVIDUAL SHOW. THANK YOU!


*PRE-FEST: TUESDAY*

THE HEIRESSES (Las Herederas), Paraguay, directed by Marcelo Martinessi

9/4/2018   7:30 p.m. FILM CENTER

95 mins / NR / Drama

Chela and Chiquita, from wealthy Paraguayan families, have been together for over 30 years. But as their financial situation worsens they’re forced to face a new reality. Chela launches a taxi service for some elderly, wealthy ladies and forges invigorating new connections to break out of her shell and embarking on her own personal, intimate revolution

Winner of multiple awards at international film festivals including Berlin, Cartegena, Seattle, and Sidney.

“‘The Heiresses’ is the kind of story Hollywood doesn’t tell anymore; a 50-something woman daring to rekindle her lost spirit of discovery.” —Seattle Times


 *PRE-FEST: WEDNESDAY*

ZAMA, Argentina, directed by Lucrecia Martel

9/5/2018   7:30 p.m. FILM CENTER

115 mins / NR / Drama

Zama, an officer of the Spanish crown born in South America, waits for a letter from the king granting him a transfer from the town in which he is stagnating, to a better place. Forced to accept every task successive governors, years pass. Then believing all is lost, Zama joins a party of soldiers to pursue a dangerous bandit.

This drama racked up awards from both the Argentinean Film Critics Association and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences of Argentina, including Best Film, Best Director, and Best Actor. It wowed audiences from Munich to Rotterdam, Havana to Palm Springs.

“Some movies unfold as dreams; “Zama” dances us playfully toward the edge of nightmare and then asks us to open our eyes.”   —Boston Globe


“OPENING NIGHT FILM AND RECEPTION”  LET’S FIESTA!

HAPPY NEW YEAR TIJUANA (Feliz Ano Tijuana), Mexico, directed by Andrew van Baal

9/6/18 (opening reception 5:30-7:30 p.m. precedes the film: 8:00pm) Film Center

75 min / NR / Comedy, Drama, Romance

Alejandro (Luis Deveze), a native of León but a long-time LA resident and college professor is stranded in Tijuana on New Year’s Eve. As the celebrations progress it unleashes a roller coaster of emotions and inner conflicts in him about romance, belief, and identity. Shot guerilla-style by a crew of two over an actual New Year’s Eve, the film fuses fact and fiction, with a mix of professional and amateur actors in the cast, improvising in both Spanish and English

 


MAKALA, Congo, directed by Emmanuel Gras

9/7/18 4:00 p.m. Film Center

96 min / NR / Documentary

A young man experiences intense tribulations as he tries to keep his dreams – like building a house for his wife and young daughters – alive. A film of immense beauty despite the images of one of the poorest places on earth. This moving film of human hope and aspirations won the Critics’ Grand Prize at Cannes and the Jury Prize for best documentary in Moscow; it also racked up multiple award nominations at international film festivals in London, France, and Göteborg too.

 


LOVELING (BENZINHO), Brazil, directed by Gustavo Pizzi

9/7/18 4:30 p.m. Capawock Theater

95 min / NR / Drama

Irene and Klaus are married and live on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro, with their four children. They’ve struggled for years to finish building their house. Irene works as an independent seller while finishing her studies to get her high-school diploma. Klaus runs a small copy shop where he also sells books. Then Fernando, their eldest son, is invited to join a professional handball team in Germany. Among the everyday issues of their family’s life, Irene will have to deal with the early separation from Fernando and adapt to a new life without him.

Winner of two top awards at the Málaga Spanish Film Festival and nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance this year.

“A warm and wonderfully universal love story that comes across surprisingly unconventional for something so familiar.” —Variety


THE DAY AFTER (GEU-HU)Korea, directed by Hong Sang-soo

9/7/18 7:30 p.m. Film Center

92 min / NR / Drama, Romance

South Korean master director Hong Sang-soo brings audiences a mordantly comic tale of infidelity and mistaken identity. Book publisher Bongwan’s marriage is on the rocks after his wife discovers his affair with his assistant even as that relationship is ending. The new assistant is left to navigate the fallout.

Nominated for the highest award at Cannes, the Palm d’Or, and grand prize winner from the Busan Film Critics Association.

“Hong tells the story in long and dialogue-filled takes, done in a soft black-and-white that feels like pencil drawings, to extract deep and earnest confessions with a graceful touch that shudders with the life-shaking emotions at their core.” —The New Yorker


SMUGGLING HENDRIX, Cyprus, directed by Marios Piperides

9/7/18 7:30 p.m. Capawock

93 min / NR / Comedy, Drama

Yiannis, a fading musician, is planning to leave crisis-ridden Cyprus for a better life abroad. His plans are put on hold when his dog Jimi runs away and crosses the UN buffer zone that divides the “Greek” from the “Turkish” side of the island. Since animal exchange between the two sides is prohibited, Yiannis reluctantly joins forces with Hasan, a Turkish settler, and a cast of unexpected characters to smuggle his best friend back.

Winner, Best Narrative Feature, Tribeca Film Festival

“A whip-smart comedy on legality, disputed nationality, and the frameworks that are erected to maintain a fragile peace.” —Frederic Boyer, Tribeca Film Festival


THE CHARMER, Denmark/Iran, directed by Milad Alami

9/7/18 9:00 p.m. Film Center

100 min / NR / Romance, Thriller

An intense drama about a young Iranian desperate to meet a woman who can provide a “paper marriage” so he can stay in Denmark. Then he falls in love—just as his past catches up with him.

Winner of top prizes at international film festivals in Taipei, Palm Springs, Warsaw, Tbilisi, and Chicago.

“Subtly engrossing, psychological fraught” —Variety


THE SAINT BERNARD SYNDICATE (SANKT BERNHARD SYNDIKATET), Denmark/China, directed by Mads Brügger

9/7/18 9:15 p.m. Capawock

98 min / NR / Comedy

Two men head to China to make money selling St. Bernard dogs in this oddball comedy film. One of the pairs recently learned he has A.L.S. and wants to seize the day; the other sees a potential business opportunity and a partner with the funds to make it happen. An unlikely pairing on a clueless assignment, they do everything but thrive.

The winner in both the Best Actor and Best Screenplay categories, in the International Narrative Competition, at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival.

 


WHAT WILL PEOPLE SAY (HVA VIL FOLK SI), Norway/Pakistan, directed by Iram Haq

9/8/18 4:00 p.m. Capawock

106 min / NR / Drama

Sixteen-year-old Nisha lives a double life. At home with her family she is the perfect Pakistani daughter, but when out with her friends, she is a normal Norwegian teenager. When her father catches her in bed with her boyfriend, Nisha’s two worlds brutally collide. To set an example, Nisha’s parents decide to kidnap her and place her with relatives in Pakistan. Here, in a country she has never been to before, Nisha is forced to adapt to her parents’ culture.

Winner of multiple prizes, at film festivals from LA to Würzburg.

One of the best Norwegian films of the year, and perhaps the most important”   —Address


ANIMATION SHORTS SHOWCASE presented by Bill Plympton

9/8/17 4:30 p.m. Film Center

70 min / NR / varied

Academy Award-nominated animator recently garnered national attention with his short films “Trump Bites” ran on the main page of the New York Times Online this year. In this truly multinational segment, he presents new animation shorts from filmmakers around the globe.

Partial Program highlights:

“Hybrids”, France, 6 mins.

This poetic CG short looks at the future of underwater sea life as machines take over our world.

“Negative Space”, USA, 5 mins. 

It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film at the 90th Academy AwardsA young boy remembers his years growing up as his father taught him how to pack suitcases and the meaning of life.

“E-delivery”, USA, 3:53 mins

This film asks the question “What if the magic of procreation was handled by a giant tech company?”

“Scratchy”, USA, 3 mins. 

20 hand-drawn 2-D scenes animated to an original music soundtrack. The dreams of the characters in the first 10 scenes are seen in the final 10 scenes. From the brilliant mind of the creator of the classic short “Bambi Meets Godzilla”.

“Brooklyn Breeze”, USA, 4 mins. 

The machinery at the Brooklyn docks comes alive in this wacky musical fantasy.

“Tupelo”, USA, 4 mins. 

A magical musical look at the historic birthplace of Elvis Presley.

“Pour 585”, USA, 5 mins. 

“Pour 585” is a hand-drawn animated film that visually interprets the individual’s role in a hierarchy. The conflict occurs when a cycle is interrupted by a character that does not adhere to the machine-like norms. This individual ends up breaking the cycle and establishing a new order, possibly even more tyrannical than the first.

“Enough”, USA, 4 mins. 

A hilarious series of shortcuts portraying people who simply have had enough.

“A Short Interview with Bearington Bear”, USA, 5 mins. 

As his career fades, a famous animated character complains about the CG world taking over his world.


JURIED COMPETITION INTERNATIONAL SHORT FILM PROGRAM

9/8/18 6:30 p.m. Capawock

137 min / NR / Varied

Each year, our most popular event. From over 300 entries, we’ve culled the best. A panel of three expert judges will choose a winner; that film will be screened again before our Closing Night feature.

The nominees for MVIFF’s 2018 best short film are:

“6ate7” – (15:48) Directed by Maggie Kiley, Australia

“The Cape” – (13:25) Directed by Andrew Olson, USA

“Still Water Runs Deep” – (15:00) Directed by Abbesi Akhami, Nigeria

“Homecoming” – (6:30) Directed by Jennifer Blair, USA

“ASIA A” – (20:00) Directed by Andrew N. Reid, USA

“Lotte the Silhouette Girl” – (9:58) Directed by Carla Patullo and Elizabeth Beecheert, Germany

“Time Can Break Your Heart” – (14:05) Directed by Paul Schwartz, USA

“Samuel David” – (12:30) Directed by Nenad Cicin-sain, USA

“Under Mom’s Skirt” – (12:10) Directed by Sarah Heitz de Chabaneix, France

“Kenya” – (12:19) Directed by D. Giliam, USA

“Boccamazzo Construction–We Build “Walls!”” – (6:20) Directed by Paul Riccio, USA


CLAIRE’S CAMERA (La Caméra de Claire), France, directed by Hong Sang-soo

9/8/17 7:30 p.m. Film Center

69 min / NR / Drama, Comedy

A philandering film director is a major plot point in this tale that’s as light and airy as a summer breeze. Isabelle Huppert plays Claire, a school teacher with a camera that might be magical on her first visit to Cannes. Beneath the humor and charm on the surface of the film is an exploration of how images have the power to transform us. “The only way to change things,” says Claire, “is to look at them again very slowly.”

Winner at the International Cinephile Society Awards and nominated for the audience award at the AFI Fest.

“A playful meditation on the transformative nature of art.” Village Voice

 


PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF DESIRE, China, directed by Hao Wu

9/9/18 9:00 p.m. Film Center

95 min / NR / Documentary

An entire generation has come of age on social media and virtual relationships are replacing real-life human connections. And China has taken it to an extreme. Here, live streaming has become the most popular online entertainment for hundreds of millions. Young performers earn as much as US$150,000 a month singing, dancing or doing talk shows to live, interactive audiences of tens of thousands. The film follows three young characters—a singer, a comedian, and a migrant worker—as they search for fame, fortune and human connection in live streaming.

Winner of multiple awards, including SXSW Grand Jury Award for best documentary feature.

“Provocative and unsettling as it brings us on a guided tour through the digital marketplace for something resembling human contact.” —Variety


OH LUCY!, Japan, directed by Atsuko Hirayanagi

9/8/18 9:15 p.m. Capawock

96 min / NR / Comedy, Drama

Setsuko is a single, emotionally unfulfilled woman, stuck with a drab, meaningless life in Tokyo—until her niece, Mika, convinces her to enroll in an unorthodox English class that requires her to wear a blonde wig and takes on an American alter ego. This new identity awakens something dormant in Setsuko. She develops romantic feelings for her American instructor, but when she learns that he and her niece were secretly dating, Setsuko and sister, Ayako take off for California to find the runaway couple.

Oh Lucy! is quirky and offbeat and strange and sometimes quite dark—and yet oddly lovable.”           —Chicago Sun-Times


 

THE LAST SUIT (El Último Traje), Argentina, directed by Pablo Solarz

9/9/18 12:00 p.m. Film Center

92 min / NR / Drama

At 88, Abraham Bursztein’s place in the world seems to be disappearing. His kids have sold his Buenos Aires residence, set him up to move to a retirement home, and disagree on how to handle his fading health. But Abraham survived the Holocaust, made a successful life in a foreign land, and isn’t about to quietly fade away. He plots a secret one-way trip to Poland to keep an old promise. Comedic and poignant in equal measure, from Argentina to Spain, across Germany and finally to Poland, Abraham is on his own but also accompanied by the characters he meets along the way. A globe-trotting surprise, a late-in-life road movie with planes, trains, and heart.

Winner of the Audience Award at both the Miami Film Festival and the Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival; “Best Actor” award, Seattle International Film Festival.

“Bring a full box of tissues.” —Seattle Times


The Festival includes an exhibition of the enchanting artwork of JoAnn L. Bates (through to September 17th), curated by Featherstone Center for the Arts, which at the Film Center’s Feldman Family Artspace & lobby. The paintings will be on display throughout the festival.

 

 


TEA WITH THE DAMES, UK, directed by Roger Michell

9/9/18 12:00 pm Capawock

83 mins/ NR/ Documentary

TEA WITH THE DAMES is a unique celebration of the lives and careers of four of our most iconic actresses; Dame Eileen Atkins, Dame Judi Dench, Dame Joan Plowright and Dame Maggie Smith. All four have gone from being fledgling actresses in the 1950s to acting royalty. They’ve watched each other’s careers grow and bloom and have celebrated life’s ups and downs together. TEA WITH THE DAMES invites you to spend time with these acting legends as they talk about their lives and their professional experiences across theatre, television, and film.

★★★★★ “Wildly enjoyable”  — Peter Bradshaw – The Guardian

 


THE FAMILY (LA FAMILIA), Venezuela, directed by Gustavo Rondon Cardova

9/9/18 2:00 p.m. Film Center

88 min / NR / Drama

A Venezuelan single father struggling to make ends meet must go into hiding with his 12-year-old son, Pedro after Pedro stabs another boy in a gang fight. The pair suddenly spends all their time together and must learn to act like a family in order to survive their current situation in a city plagued by a grim economic crisis.

“Often quick on its feet and energetic rather than melodramatic or inward-looking, this is a promising debut….”—Hollywood Reporter

 

 


THE WOMEN’S BALCONY (ISMACH HATANI) Israel, directed by Emil Ben-Shimon

9/9/18 2:15 p.m.

 Capawock

96 min / NR / Comedy, Drama

The women in an Orthodox Jewish community in Jerusalem are appalled when their synagogue gets a strict new rabbi who preaches rigid gender roles. The ladies soon decide to fight back against his ultratraditional beliefs, while raising money to repair the “women’s balcony” in the synagogue.

“It’s impossible to resist a film that has such rich characters, and makes a complicated subject both enlightening and entertaining.” —San Francisco Chronicle


*Closing Night: Movie + Party*

EARS (ORECCHIE)

Italy, directed by Alessandro Aronadio

9/9/18 4:30 p.m. Capawock

90 mins / NR / Comedy

This comedy begins when a man wakes up with a low ringing sound in his ears and discovers a cryptic note on his fridge “Your friend Luigi has died. P.S. I took the car.” He sets out to discover who this “Luigi” is and finds it’s one of those days that might change your life forever.

Winner of over a dozen film festival awards, including Best Film at the Venice Film Festival and Monte-Carlo Comedy Film Festival.

“Classically dark humor with a postmodern hero.” —Cheri Passell, ILoveItalianMovies.com

Closing Night party with food and wine at LA SOFFITTA, the Italian restaurant, 83 Main Street, Vineyard Haven, to follow immediately (6:30-8:00 p.m.)


 

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