CONTACT: Susan Bluttman, AFI
AFI LATIN AMERICAN FILM FESTIVAL 2014 ANNOUNCES LINEUP
Opens with THE LIBERATOR; Closes with 10,000 KM
Twenty-fifth Edition of Festival Runs September 18–October 8 with
40 Films Representing 20 Countries
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — Silver Spring, MD, September 4, 2014 — The American Film Institute announced today the complete slate of films for the 2014 edition of its AFI Latin American Film Festival which will take place September 18–October 8 at the historic AFI Silver Theatre in Silver Spring, Maryland. The festival, now celebrating its 25th year, showcases the best in filmmaking from Latin America and, with the inclusion of films from Spain and Portugal, celebrates Ibero-American cultural connections. This year's selection of 40 films ranges from international festival favorites and award winners, to local box-office hits and debut works from gifted new talents. Additionally, a number of the filmmakers and actors will present their films in person at this year's screenings and several of the festival's Special Presentations will include post-screening receptions.
The Opening Night film, THE LIBERATOR, directed by Alberto Arvelo (CYRANO FERNÁNDEZ) is an epic big-screen biopic about the South American freedom fighter Simón Bolívar. The screening will be followed by a reception sponsored by Café Azul.
Additional Special Festival Presentations include: Argentina's box office sensation 7TH FLOOR, a heart-pounding thriller starring Ricardo Darín (THE SECRET IN THEIR EYES) and Belén Rueda (THE ORPHANAGE); a free sneak preview of the animated adventure THE BOOK OF LIFE, produced by Guillermo del Toro (PACIFIC RIM), with director and writer Jorge Gutierrez in attendance for a post-screening discussion; and PARADISE, a light-hearted rom-com about weight loss, with director/screenwriter Mariana Chenillo (NORA'S WILL) in attendance for a discussion, plus a post-screening reception sponsored by the Mexican Cultural Institute.
The 2014 festival also features the World Premiere of the first Salvadoran dramatic feature in more than 40 years, THE CROW'S NEST, with producer/director/screenwriter Arturo Menéndez and producer Andre Guttfreund in attendance for a discussion, plus a post-screening reception sponsored by the Embassy of El Salvador; the US premiere of recent Cannes debut, GENTE DE BIEN, a sensitive coming-of-age story; and TO KILL A MAN, winner of the Grand Jury Prize in the World Cinema Competition at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, with lead actor Daniel Candia in attendance, to be followed by a Chilean wine tasting sponsored by the Embassy of Chile.
Other festival highlights include LOCK CHARMER, a charming dramedy with a dash of magical realism, with director/screenwriter Natalia Smirnoff (ROMPECABEZAS) in attendance for a discussion with Dr. Beatriz Urraca, co-editor of “Directory of World Cinema: Argentina,” plus a post-screening reception sponsored by the Embassy of Argentina; and Closing Night selection, 10,000 KM, about a long-distance relationship in the 21st century, with director/screenwriter Carlos Marques-Marcet (THE YELLOW RIBBON) in attendance for a discussion, plus a post-screening reception sponsored by SPAIN arts & culture and the Embassy of Spain.
Additional festival guests include filmmaker Héctor Valdez and actor Christian Alvarez with their breathtaking Dominican road film, SOUTH OF INNOCENCE and director/screenwriter Cláudio Marques with his anarchic political allegory from Brazil, AFTER THE RAIN.
Further highlights include Argentina's LIVING STARS, a raucous dance documentary, which will be followed by an after-party featuring a DJ set by Maracuyeah Collective; CASA GRANDE, a witty coming-of-age tale from Brazil that explores issues of race and class; TWO SHOTS FIRED, an existential comedy from Martín Rejtman (THE MAGIC GLOVES), following its recent screenings at the Toronto and New York Film Festivals; ILLITERATE, starring Paulina García (GLORIA); THE BOY AND THE WORLD, a stunningly animated Brazilian fable, awarded the top prize at this year's Annecy Animated Film Festival; and LIVING IS EASY WITH EYES CLOSED, winner of six Goya Awards.
A complete schedule of all festival screenings is attached. For photos, contact Susan Bluttman at sbluttman@AFI.com. For updated information and tickets, go to AFI.com/Silver/LAFF.
About the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center
AFI Silver is one of the nation's premier film theaters, building an appreciation of the art and artists through exploring and celebrating new and classic films and filmmakers from around the globe. AFI Silver offers a year-round program of the best in American and international cinema, featuring a dynamic mix of retrospectives, special events, tributes, on-stage guest appearances, specialty first-run movies, festivals, premieres, and education and community-based programs in a theatrical setting of the highest standards. Anchored by the stunningly restored 1938 Silver Theatre, the three-screen AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center is a state-of-the-art film and digital media exhibition venue that serves as a national model for preserving and honoring our shared film and film-going heritage. For more information about the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center, visit AFI.com/Silver.
About the American Film Institute
AFI is America's promise to preserve the history of the motion picture, to honor the artists and their work and to educate the next generation of storytellers. AFI provides leadership in film, television and digital media and is dedicated to initiatives that engage the past, the present and the future of the moving image arts.
AFI programs include the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and AFI Archive, which preserve film heritage for future generations; the AFI Life Achievement Award – the highest honor for a career in film – now in its 42nd year; AFI Awards, honoring the most outstanding motion pictures and television programs of the year; AFI's 100 Years...100 Movies television events and movie reference lists, which have introduced and reintroduced classic American movies to millions of film lovers; year-round and special event exhibition through AFI Fest presented by Audi, AFI Docs and the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center; and educating the next generation of storytellers at the world renowned AFI Conservatory, recognized for the quality of its instructors and speakers and its notable alumni.
For more information about AFI, visit AFI.com or connect with AFI at twitter.com/AmericanFilm, facebook.com/AmericanFilmInstitute and youtube.com/AFI
AFI Latin American Film Festival
September 18–October 8
Welcome! Bienvenidos! Bem-vindo!
Now in its 25th year, the AFI Latin American Film Festival showcases the best filmmaking from Latin America and, with the inclusion of films from Spain and Portugal, celebrates Ibero-American cultural connections. This year’s selection of more than 40 films includes international festival favorites, award-winners, local box-office hits and debut works by promising new talents.
Regular priced tickets for AFI Latin American Film Festival screenings are $13/$10 AFI Members. No passes accepted.
*Opening Night *
THE LIBERATOR [Libertador]
Post-screening reception sponsored by Café Azul
Thu, Sep 18, 7:15 (Opening Night); Sat, Sep 27, 7:15
A larger-than-life hero gets the big-screen treatment he deserves in this epic biopic, the story of freedom fighter Simón Bolívar (Édgar Ramírez, CARLOS), the caddish aristocrat-turned-revolutionary who rallied against the Spanish crown in his quest for South American independence. Written by Timothy J. Sexton (CHILDREN OF MEN), directed by celebrated Venezuelan filmmaker Alberto Arvelo and featuring the first score composed for the screen by Gustavo Dudamel, Venezuelan music director of the LA Philharmonic. Official Selection, 2013 Toronto International Film Festival, 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival. DIR/PROD Alberto Arvelo; SCR Timothy J. Sexton; PROD Winfried Hammacher, Ana Loehnert. Venezuela/Spain, 2013, color, 119 min. In Spanish, English and French with English subtitles. NOT RATED
7TH FLOOR [Séptimo]
Fri, Sep 19, 7:15; Sat, Sep 20, 9:45; Tue, Sep 23, 9:45
On the cusp of divorce, Sebastián (Ricardo Darín, THE SECRET IN THEIR EYES) and Delia (Belén Rueda, THE ORPHANAGE) face a parent’s worst nightmare when their two children vanish on the walk down from their seventh floor Buenos Aires apartment. Panicked, Sebastián must begin a desperate search to find his kids before it’s too late. But with the biggest day in his legal career ahead of him, could there be a deeper conspiracy at hand? A box office sensation in both Argentina and Spain, this heart-pounding thriller features dynamo performances from two of the Spanish-speaking world’s greatest stars. DIR/SCR Patxi Amezcua; SCR Alejo Flah; PROD Álvaro Agustín, Jordi Gasull, Axel Kuschevatzky, Andrés Longares, Matías Mosteirín, Edmon Roch. Argentina/Spain, 2013, color, 91 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. RATED R
THE MYSTERY OF HAPPINESS [El misterio de la felicidad]
Sun, Sep 21, 1:00; Mon, Sep 22, 5:15; Wed, Sep 24, 5:15
Celebrated Argentine filmmaker Daniel Burman (LOST EMBRACE, EMPTY NEST) returns with his latest dramedy, an ode to friendship, love and midlife crises. Santiago and Eugenio’s business and friendship runs like clockwork, their every activity synchronized. Until one day, Eugenio vanishes without a trace, throwing Santiago’s carefully balanced life into chaos. Eugenio’s wife Laura assumes her husband’s role in the business, a change no one likes at first, but one that in time might prove to be a change for the better. Official Selection, 2014 Sydney Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Daniel Burman; SCR Sergio Dubcovsky; PROD Walkiria Barbosa, Diego Dubcovsky. Argentina/Brazil, 2014, color, 92 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Post-screening party featuring DJ set by Maracuyeah Collective, sponsored by Kesta Happening
Sat, Oct 4, 10:00
A non-stop party, the citizens of Buenos Aires were born to dance in this ridiculously infectious documentary experiment. Without dialogue or plot, filmmakers Mariano Cohn and Gastón Duprat have captured porteños in their native habitat, grooving along to their favorite pop hits. From rich to poor, young to old, nothing can stop the gleeful performances of this diverse dancing bunch. A sensation at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, audiences are encouraged to leave their seats and join in the fun. Official Selection, 2014 Sundance, BAFICI and Hot Docs Film Festivals. DIR Mariano Cohn, Gastón Duprat; SCR Andrés Duprat. Argentina, 2014, color, 63 min. NOT RATED
NATURAL SCIENCES [Ciencias naturales]
Fri, Sep 26, 5:30; Sun, Sep 28, 3:20; Wed, Oct 1, 5:20
Twelve-year-old Lila will stop at nothing to find the father she’s never known. After repeated attempts to escape her remote boarding school in the Sierra de Córdoba mountains, she manages to rope in her empathetic teacher through sheer persistence, and the two set off on a complicated journey of discovery. Without even knowing her father’s name, Lila will have to rely on a single clue to find the truth. This debut feature by Matías Lucchesi is a sweet, sensitive coming-of-age story. Best Feature Film, Generation Kplus, 2014 Berlin Film Festival; Best Film, Best Actress, Best Screenplay, 2014 Guadalajara Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Matías Lucchesi; SCR Gonzalo Salaya; PROD Fabrice Lambot, Juan Pablo Miller. Argentina/France, 2014, color, 71 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
TWO SHOTS FIRED [Dos disparos]
Wed, Oct 1, 7:00; Sat, Oct 4, 5:15
After a ten-year hiatus, legendary Argentine filmmaker Martín Rejtman (THE MAGIC GLOVES, SILVIA PRIETO, RAPADO) returns with this wry existential comedy. After a night of partying, 16-year-old Mariano finds a gun and impulsively shoots himself twice, once in the head and once in the chest, but miraculously survives. This improbable act sets off a wickedly quotidian chain reaction as his friends and family deal dispassionately with the aftermath. As the film flits from character to character, Rejtman masterfully finds the magic in the mundane. Official Selection, 2014 Locarno, Toronto, New York Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Martín Rejtman; PROD Violeta Bava, Rosa Martínez Rivero, Bruno Bettati, Christoph Friedel, Jan van der Zanden. Argentina/Chile/Germany/Netherlands, 2014, color, 104 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
LOCK CHARMER [El cerrajero]
Q&A with filmmaker Natalia Smirnoff and Dr. Beatriz Urraca (co-editor of “Directory of World Cinema: Argentina”), plus post-screening reception sponsored by the Embassy of Argentina on Oct 4
Fri, Oct 3, 5:30; Sat, Oct 4, 3:00; Tue, Oct 7, 7:15
In 2008, a bizarre fog covered Buenos Aires for three weeks. It is during this strange time that 33-year-old locksmith Sebastian (Esteban Lamothe) has his first brush with the supernatural. When he unlocks a door, he gets a brief glimpse into the client’s life. Sebastian’s life is further complicated when an ex turns up pregnant and a troubled Peruvian maid holes up in his bachelor pad. Filmmaker Natalia Smirnoff has created a charming dramedy with a winning dash of magical realism. Official Selection, 2014 Sundance and Cartagena Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Natalia Smirnoff; PROD Juan Pablo Miller. Argentina, 2014, color, 77 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
YVY MARAEY, LAND WITHOUT EVIL [Yvy Maraey, tierra sin mal]
Sun, Oct 5, 7:30
Sundance Award-winning filmmaker Juan Carlos Valdivia (SOUTHERN DISTRICT, 2010 AFI Latin American Film Festival) plays a version of himself, a documentarian hoping to make a film about the Guaraní people and retrace the trail of an early Swedish explorer. With the help of a Guaraní guide, he heads into southeastern Bolivia, where the indigenous culture still reigns. The prickly metropolitan filmmaker is often met with indignation, a reflection of the greater Bolivian culture clash. A lyrical and philosophical road movie, where the journey leads not to a destination but to a deeper understanding of identity, memory and the power of cinema. DIR/SCR/PROD Juan Carlos Valdivia; SCR Elio Ortiz; PROD Matthias Ehrenberg, Joaquin Sánchez. Bolivia/Mexico/Norway, 2013, color, 107 min. In Spanish and Guaraní with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Sat, Sep 20, 7:15; Wed, Sep 24, 7:15
Set in the affluent suburbs of Rio de Janeiro, this wry and witty debut film delicately unravels issues of class and race in modern-day Brazil through the eyes of a 17-year-old boy. Growing up in the lap of luxury, Jean has grown accustomed to the private drivers and housekeepers his parents have provided. But with girls and clubbing preoccupying his thoughts, Jean fails to realize that his father has nearly exhausted the family fortune. Now forced to take the bus to school, he chats up Luiza, a mixed-race girl who opens his eyes to a different Rio. Official Selection, 2014 Rotterdam, LatinBeat, Sydney and Melbourne Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Fellipe Barbosa; SCR Karen Sztajnberg; PROD Iafa Britz. Brazil, 2014, color, 115 min. In Portuguese with English subtitles. NOT RATED
AFTER THE RAIN [Depois da chuva]
Q&A with filmmaker Cláudio Marques on Sep 23
Tue, Sep 23, 7:00; Wed, Sep 24, 9:40
1984. After 20 years of dictatorship, the people of Brazil are excited for their first free presidential election, while teenager Caio sets his sights on the equally contested student council campaign. Coming of age alongside the newly freed country, where real change seemed possible, the anarchist-leaning Caio stands up for his beliefs. Aided by his first love Fernanda in his struggle for justice, he must accept that as much as things change, they still stay the same. Directing duo Cláudio Marques and Marília Hughes’ punky political allegory provides a rare insight into this turbulent transitional period in Brazil’s history. Official Selection, 2014 BAFICI and Rotterdam Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Cláudio Marques, Marília Hughes; PROD Pedro Maia, Sophia Corral, Talis Castro, Paula Carneiro, Victor Corujeira. Brazil, 2014, color, 95 min. In Portuguese with English subtitles. NOT RATED
FUTURO BEACH [Praia do Futuro]
Fri, Sep 26, 7:30; Sun, Sep 28, 9:10
Directed with stylish verve by Brazilian filmmaker Karim Aïnouz, this dark romance explores courage, fear and love over the course of an eight-year relationship. Donato (Wagner Moura, ELITE SQUAD, ELYSIUM) is a lifeguard on the stunning beaches of Fortaleza. Struck with guilt when he isn’t able to save a drowning German tourist, he takes to the victim’s grieving friend Konrad (Clemens Shick). A torrid affair follows and the two swap sunny Brazil for frigid Berlin. A visual masterpiece, the film pulses with sensuality and stark beauty, backed by a dreamy score by German composer Hauschka. Official Selection, 2014 Berlin and Seattle Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Karim Aïnouz; SCR Felipe Bragança; PROD Geórgia Costa Araújo, Hank Levine. Brazil/Germany, 2014, color, 106 min. In Portuguese and German with English subtitles. NOT RATED
A WOLF AT THE DOOR [O lobo atrás da porta]
Fri, Sep 26, 10:00; Sun, Sep 28, 5:00; Tue, Sep 30, 9:30
An affair takes a twisted turn in this pulse-pounding thriller based on a true Rio crime story. The spark long gone, married couple Sylvia and Bernardo are desperate for excitement. Bernardo meets the sensual yet unstable Rosa, and the two begin a passionate affair. Meanwhile, Sylvia unknowingly strikes up a friendship with her. Inventively told from each of their perspectives, this edgy neo-noir has been winning awards around the world. Best Film, Best Actress, 2013 Rio De Janeiro Film Festival; Horizons Award, 2013 San Sebastian Film Festival; Grand Jury Prize, Best Director, 2014 Miami Film Festival. Official Selection, 2014 SXSW, Seattle Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Fernando Coimbra; PROD Caio Gullane, Fabiano Gullane, Débora Ivanov, Gabriel Lacerda. Brazil, 2013, color, 100 min. In Portuguese with English subtitles. NOT RATED
THE BOY AND THE WORLD [O menino e o mundo]
Sat, Sep 27, 5:30; Sun, Sep 28, 1:00
A unique and visually dazzling spectacle, this wordless animated parable follows Cuca, a young boy who leaves behind the idyllic Brazilian countryside for a gritty mega-metropolis in search of his missing father. Exhilarating for audiences of all ages, artist/animator Alê Abreu’s vibrant and eclectic images (ranging from simple stick figures to impressive collages) combine with the samba rhythms of Brazil to create a mesmerizing entertainment which won both the Audience Award and the Cristal Award for Best Film at the prestigious Annecy International Animated Film Festival. DIR Alê Abreu; PROD Fernanda Carvalho, Tita Tessler. Brazil, 2014, color, 80 min. NOT RATED
THE WAY HE LOOKS [Hoje eu quero voltar sozinho]
Sun, Sep 28, 1:20; Tue, Sep 30, 7:45
Born blind, angsty São Paolo teen Leonardo is stuck in a rut. His overprotective parents smother him, and his best friend Giovana isn’t much better, dutifully guiding him home from school each day. But when dreamy new kid Gabriel joins his class, things start to look up as they strike up a friendship and hope for more, much to the dismay of the jealous Giovana. A delightful, feel-good coming-of-age tale, filmmaker Daniel Ribeiro brings a John Hughes-esque touch to this poignant teen romance. Teddy Award, FIPRESCI Prize, 2014 Berlin Film Festival; Audience Award, Guadalajara Film Festival. Official Selection, 2014 Cartagena, Seattle Film Festivals. DIR/SCR/PROD Daniel Ribeiro; PROD Diana Almeida. Brazil, 2014, color, 95 min. In Portuguese with English subtitles. NOT RATED
ILLITERATE [Las analfabetas]
Sat, Sep 20, 1:20; Sun, Sep 21, 3:00; Tue, Sep 23, 5:15
Ximena (Paulina García, GLORIA) is a middle-aged recluse, ashamed of her illiteracy and trapped in a lonely existence lest anyone discover her secret. When the woman Ximena employs to read her the newspaper falls ill, the woman’s daughter, Jackeline (Valentina Muhr), fills in and decides to teach Ximena to read and write. But Ximena is no easy pupil, and the two butt heads, slinging insults more often than learning the alphabet. This emotional drama features brilliant performances from its lead actresses, both reprising their roles from the original stage production. Official Selection, 2013 Venice Film Festival. Audience Award Winner, 2013 Santiago Film Festival. DIR/SCR Moisés Sepúlveda; SCR Pablo Paredes; PROD Fernando Bascuñán. Chile, 2013, color, 73 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
THE SUMMER OF FLYING FISH [El verano de los peces voladores]
Fri, Sep 26, 5:20; Sat, Sep 27, 11:30 a.m.; Sun, Sep 28, 11:30 a.m.
Deep within the mist-filled forests of southern Chile, wealthy landowner Don Francisco will stop at nothing to eliminate the exploding carp population in his summer estate’s private lake, recklessly “fishing” with dynamite and endangering his workers. The native Mapuche Indians don’t take kindly to the mistreatment of their ancestral lands, and tensions begin to boil. Obsessed with his desire to dominate his domain, Francisco fails to realize that he is losing touch with his daughter Manena in this atmospheric mood piece from former documentarian Marcela Said. Official Selection, 2013 Cannes, Toronto, Vancouver Film Festival. DIR/SCR Marcela Said; SCR Julio Rojas; PROD Bruno Bettati, Tom Dercourt. Chile/France, 2013, color, 95 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
TO KILL A MAN [Matar a un hombre]
Q&A with actor Daniel Candia, plus post-screening wine tasting
sponsored by the Embassy of Chile on Sep 27
Sat, Sep 27, 7:30; Thu, Oct 2, 7:00
This taut psychological thriller tells the story of Jorge, a man pushed to the brink of reason after a gang of hooligans threatens his family. At first, the passive Jorge doesn’t fight back, but faced with the gang’s constant harassment, he must take justice into his own hands and live with the life-changing consequences. Writer/director Alejandro Fernández Almendras won the Grand Jury Prize in the World Cinema Competition at this year’s Sundance Film Festival for his intense moral drama. Official Selection, 2014 New Directors/New Films, Rotterdam, Seattle, and Miami Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Alejandro Fernández Almendras; PROD Guillaume de Seille, Eduardo Villalobos. Chile/France, 2014, color, 83 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Fri, Sep 19, 5:15; Sat, Sep 20, 3:00; Mon, Sep 22, 7:15
Threatened with expulsion and in danger of adopting a life of crime, 16-year-old Mateo must join a radical theatre group if he wants to turn his life around, reporting to his mob boss uncle about the troupe's politics and the unconventional priest who runs the program. To his surprise, Mateo begins to enjoy the eccentric bunch and begins to fall for star pupil Ana. Trapped between two worlds, Mateo must choose which path he really wants, in this heart-warming, inspirational drama that explores the true power of the arts. Ibero-American Opera Prima Award, Screenwriting Award, 2014 Miami Film Festival. Official Selection, 2014 Cartagena Film Festival. DIR/SCR Maria Gamboa; SCR Adriana Arjona; PROD Maria Fernanda Barrientos, Daniel García, Thierry Lenouvel. Colombia/France, 2014, color, 86 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
GENTE DE BIEN
Sun, Sep 21, 5:00; Thu, Sep 25, 7:00
Stuck with his estranged father, temperamental tyke Eric and his scruffy dog Lupe live a modest life in Bogotá, until a wealthy family takes pity and invites them to stay at their country home for Christmas. Blissfully unaware of the implications, Eric quickly takes to his new life in the lap of luxury, riding horses, splashing in the pool and making friends with the other kids. But it soon becomes clear that he doesn’t belong and never will. Ten-year-old Bryan Santamarià gives an engrossing, bittersweet performance in filmmaker Franco Lolli’s remarkable and sensitive debut. Official Selection, 2014 Cannes Film Festival. DIR/SCR Franco Lolli; SCR Catherine Paillé, Virginie Legeay; PROD Grégoire Debailly. Colombia/France, 2014, color, 86 min. In Spanish with English subtitles.
ALL ABOUT THE FEATHERS [Por las plumas]
Sat, Sep 20, 5:00; Mon, Sep 22, 9:10
A down-on-his-luck security guard buys a fighting cock in this delightfully deadpan Costa Rican comedy. Working the nightshift on a deserted property, Chalo always dreamed of owning a fighting fowl, but when his wish comes true he’s not sure how to turn Rocky the rooster into a champion. Out of luck, he turns to his hapless coworker Jason, nurturing neighbor Candy and his biggest fan, Erlan, in order to get by. Utilizing a cast of non-professional actors, first-time filmmaker Neto Villalobos has crafted a daffy, intimate tale of friendship. Official Selection, 2013 Toronto, San Sebastian Film Festivals; 2014 Miami, San Francisco, Vancouver Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Neto Villalobos. Costa Rica, 2013, color, 85 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Sat, Sep 27, 10:00; Mon, Sep 29, 5:15; Wed, Oct 1, 9:45
Struggling to get by, young lovers Manuel and Lia take up residence in an abandoned Havana apartment. But when Tania, the rightful owner, returns unexpectedly, the three faceâ€¨a turf war, one where heated arguments give way to strange attractions. As a hurricane approaches, the trio must learn to coexist if they want to survive. One of the few truly independent filmmakers in Cuba, Enrique Álvarez’s sensual drama is a striking allegory for contemporary life in Havana. Official Selection, 2013 Rotterdam Film Festival; Spirit Award, 2013 Brooklyn Film Festival; Official Selection, 2014 Cine Las Americas Film Festival, Havana Film Festival in New York. DIR Enrique Álvarez; SCR Claudia Muñiz; PROD Nicolás Ordoñez, Gina Villafañe, Ivonne Cotorruelo. Cuba/Panama/Colombia, 2013, color, 94 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
SOUTH OF INNOCENCE [Al Sur de la Inocencia]
Q&A with filmmaker Héctor Valdez and actor Christian Alvarez, plus post screening refreshments sponsored by the Embassy of the Dominican Republic
Tue, Sep 30, 7:00
Returning to the Dominican Republic after living in the States, stepsiblings Vera and Andres’ homecoming party is cut short when their father is arrested for money laundering. Running from the police, they hatch a plan to flee to the south of the island, with their new friend Santiago in tow. Hoping to leave their troubled past behind, they embark on a life-changing adventure. A fresh, sexy debut from filmmaker Héctor Valdez. Opening Night Film, 2014 Dominican Film Festival. Official Selection, 2014 Chicago Latino Film Festival. DIR/SCR Héctor Valdez; SCR Cynthia F. Cota; PROD Claudette Gomez Brisson. Dominican Republic, 2014, color, 90 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
THE FACILITATOR [El facilitador]
Sat, Oct 4, 11:00 a.m.; Sun, Oct 5, 1:00; Tue, Oct 7, 5:20
Hard-partying Elena reluctantly returns to Quito after her wealthy father falls ill, but after a run-in with the law, the old man sends her to the country to get her act together. There, she reunites with childhood friend Galo, an organizer who promotes water access rights for the indigenous community. Inspired, Elena joins Galo’s cause, with a sense of purpose that helps her regain control over her life. But when a family secret comes to light, it threatens to send Elena spiraling back into self-destruction. A powerful sociopolitical thriller from Víctor Arregui (MY TIME WILL COME, 2008 AFI Latin American Film Festival). DIR/SCR Víctor Arregui; SCR Anahí Hoeneisen; PROD Isabella Parra. Ecuador/Chile, 2013, color, 83 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
THE CROW’S NEST [Malacrianza]
Q&A with filmmaker Arturo Menéndez and producer Andre Guttfreund, plus post-screening reception sponsored by the Embassy of El Salvador
Sat, Oct 4, 7:30
Don Cleo is a recovering alcoholic and makes a humble living selling piñatas in a small Salvadoran town. His resolve is put to the test when a mysterious extortion note shows up at his doorstep demanding $500 (a small fortune for him) within 72 hours or he’ll face certain death. But the harder he tries to raise the funds, the deeper into trouble he gets. If Don Cleo hopes to survive, he’ll have to face his fears and stand up to his tormentors. Creating the first Salvadoran narrative feature film in more than 40 years, filmmaker Arturo Menéndez proudly puts El Salvador on the cinematic map. DIR/SCR/PROD Arturo Menéndez; PROD Andre Guttfreund, Alfonso Quijada. El Salvador, 2014, color, 70 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Fri, Sep 19, 9:15
The effects of immigration weigh heavily on a small Zapotec village in rural Oaxaca, in this heartrending debut feature from Damian John Harper. Like many before him, teenager Mateo is preparing to migrate to the U.S., saving up money to pay for the coyote and joining the local gang to make a smooth transition to thug life in LA. But when his final task is murder, Mateo must face hard truths about the cost of the American Dream. Official Selection, 2014 Berlin Film Festival; Best First Feature, 2014 Guadalajara Film Festival; LA Muse Award, 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival. DIR/SCR Damian John Harper; PROD Jakob D. Weydemann, Jonas Weydemann. Mexico/Germany, 2014, color, 97 min. In Zapotec and Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Q&A with filmmaker Mariana Chenillo, plus post-screening reception sponsored by the Mexican Cultural Institute on Sep 26
Fri, Sep 26, 7:15; Mon, Sep 29, 9:15
Carmen and Alfredo are a happy, overweight couple whose sheltered life in the suburbs is flipped upside-down when they move to bustling Mexico City. Adapting to pressures of life in the capital, Carmen decides to go on a diet and begs Alfredo to join her. Alfredo quickly sheds more pounds than his wife, boosting his confidence but creating friction in the relationship. Searching for happiness, Carmen realizes that food isn’t just about calories. Writer/director Mariana Chenillo follows up her award-winning debut, NORA’S WILL, with this touching romantic comedy. Official Selection, 2013 Toronto, San Sebastian Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Mariana Chenillo; SCR from a story by Julieta Arévalo; PROD Pablo Cruz. Mexico, 2013, color, 105 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
WE ARE MARI PEPA [Somos Mari Pepa]
Wed, Oct 1, 9:30; Thu, Oct 2, 9:00
With school out for summer, the wannabe punk rockers of teen band Mari Pepa are free to let their hormones rage, hit up the skate park and rehearse the one song in their limited repertoire over and over again. If they want to enter the battle of the bands, they’ll have to come up with another catchy tune, a task easier said than done. But with the end of summer and manhood on the horizon, the teens are forced to reexamine their priorities. An often-hilarious portrait of aimless youth, the film was inspired by filmmaker Samuel Kishi’s own Guadalajara teen years. Official Selection, 2013 AFI Fest; 2014 Berlin Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Samuel Kishi; SCR Sofía Gómez-Córdova. Mexico, 2013, color, 100 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Mon, Oct 6, 9:20; Tue, Oct 7, 9:00
This plucky and effortlessly cool b&w pic from newcomer Alonso Ruiz Palacios follows three restless teens during the student strikes of 1999. Federico and Santos are roommates in Mexico City, students “on strike from the strike” now that their university has been shut down, when Federico’s brother Tomás arrives. Looking to kill some time and their boredom, they hit the streets of the city looking for famed folk-rocker Epigmenio Cruz, who once allegedly made Bob Dylan cry. Best First Feature Award, 2014 Berlin Film Festival; Best Cinematography, Special Jury Mention for Best New Narrative Director, 2014 Tribeca Film Festival. DIR/SCR Alonso Ruiz Palacios; SCR Gibrán Portela; PROD Ramiro Ruiz. Mexico, 2014, b&w, 108 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
2013 Oscar® Selection, Mexico
Fri, Oct 3, 9:40; Sun, Oct 5, 9:40; Wed, Oct 8, 10:00
In a small town in the Mexican plains, Heli lives a modest but peaceful life with his wife and newborn child, his father and 12-year-old sister. But when his sister gets mixed up with a police cadet, a chain of brutal events comes raining down on the unsuspecting family. Filmmaker Amat Escalante won Best Director at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival for his unflinching portrait of an innocent family caught in a violent war between drug gangs and crooked government officials. “A stunning piece of filmmaking…Hypnotic, starkly beautiful.” –LA Times. Official Selection, 2013 AFI FEST, Karlovy Vary, London, Chicago Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Amat Escalante; SCR Gabriel Reyes; PROD Jaime Romandia. Mexico/Netherlands/Germany/France, 2013, color, 105 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
A QUIET INQUISITION - $5 tickets!
Mon, Oct 6, 7:15
At a public hospital in Nicaragua, this documentary follows OB/GYN Carla Cerrato, struggling with her conscience as she contends with the implications of a new law that bans all abortion, even in the face of saving a woman’s life. As she and her colleagues navigate the murky legal waters and potential of prosecution, the drama of this deadly law emerges, as Carla meets with young patients in search of life-changing help. As the stakes elevate, and the fatalities become personal, Carla’s outrage and sadness transform into a willingness to act boldly in the face of the law. Official Selection, 2014 Human Rights Watch Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Holen Sabrina Kahn, Alessandra Zeka. US/Nicaragua, 2014, color, 65 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
COSTA DULCE supported by the IDB Cultural Center
Sat, Sep 27, 1:30; Mon, Sep 29, 7:45; Tue, Sep 30, 5:20; Thu, Oct 2, 5:20
When a metal detector falls into David’s lap, he becomes obsessed with the many myths about treasures buried in the Paraguayan hinterland during the bloody 19th-century War of the Triple Alliance. Eager to get his hands on some cash, the young Guaraní becomes consumed with this Sisyphean task, risking his life and sanity. This timeless story of greed and obsession is lyrically realized by painter-turned-filmmaker Enrique Collar. Official Selection, 2013 Mar del Plata Film Festival; 2014 Rotterdam Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Enrique Collar; SCR Juan Marín; PROD André Schreuders. Paraguay/Netherlands, 2013, color, 75 min. In Guaraní with English subtitles. NOT RATED
THE MUTE [El mudo]
Sun, Sep 28, 7:15; Thu, Oct 2, 7:45
Judge Constantino Zegarra has lived his professional life according to a strict moral code, proud that he’s never taken a bribe or succumbed to corruption like so many of his colleagues. But when a bullet leaves him speechless, he becomes consumed with paranoia that he’s the victim of a greater conspiracy. Combining elements of wry black comedy with a legal thriller, the Vega brothers have created a worthy follow-up to OCTUBRE, their award-winning debut. Best Actor, 2013 Locarno Film Festival; Official Selection, 2013 Toronto International Film Festival, 2014 Palm Springs, Cartagena Film Festivals; Best Director, Best Actor, 2014 BAFICI Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Daniel Vega, Diego Vega; SCR Manuel Arias. Peru/France/Mexico, 2013, color, 86 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Sat, Sep 20, 11:30 a.m.; Sun, Sep 21, 11:00 a.m.
Two Lisbon women are brought together in the fight to save a young Guinean girl from the threat of genital mutilation in this sensitive drama from Portuguese filmmaker Inês Oliveira. Sofia is a shut-in, a woman with a traumatic past, unwilling to connect with the outside world. Mariama is the Guinean housekeeper Sofia’s mother sent to keep up with the chores. But with Mariama’s younger sister Bobô facing a cruel traditional practice, Sofia will be forced out of her shell if she wants to intervene. Official Selection, 2013 Toronto and São Paolo Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Inês Oliveira; SCR Rita Benis; PROD Fernando Vendrell. Portugal, 2013, color, 80 min. In Portuguese and Creole with English subtitles. NOT RATED
LIVING IS EASY WITH EYES CLOSED [Vivir es fácil con los ojos cerrados]
Sat, Sep 27, 5:00; Sun, Sep 28, 5:15
Albacete, Spain, 1966. Antonio (Javier Cámara, TALK TO HER) is a high-school English teacher fond of using Beatles lyrics as a teaching tool for his students. When he finds out that John Lennon has arrived in Almería to shoot HOW I WON THE WAR, he hops in his Fiat, intent on meeting his hero. Along the way, he picks up two runaways, teens Juanjo and Belén, and together they embark on a life-changing adventure. AFI alum David Trueba (AFI Class of 1992) has imbued this charming comedy with delightful period touches and a true sense of whimsy. Winner of six Goya Awards including Best Film, Director, Actor and Screenplay. DIR/SCR David Trueba; PROD Cristina Huete. Spain, 2013, color, 108 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
SERRAT & SABINA: TWO FOR THE ROAD [Serrat y Sabina, el símbolo y el cuate]
Sat, Oct 4, 1:00; Sun, Oct 5, 5:45; Mon, Oct 6, 5:20; Wed, Oct 8, 5:20
Spanish superstars Joaquín Sabina and Joan Manuel Serrat embark on a Latin American tour in this rollicking documentary. Exiled to Mexico during Franco’s dictatorship, the two singer/songwriters have formed a bond with Latin America, serving as folk heroes through the turbulent political times of the region. As they travel and perform from Mexico City to Buenos Aires, the filmmakers get behind-the-scenes access to incredible concert footage, interviews with superfans like Ricardo Darín and a glimpse into the hopes and fears of these talented performers. Official Selection, 2013 San Sebastian Film Festival, 2014 Miami Film Festival. DIR/SCR Francesc Relea; PROD Tono Folguera, Isabel Jubert. Spain, 2013, color, 82 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Q&A with filmmaker Carlos Marques-Marcet, plus post-screening reception sponsored by SPAIN arts & culture, Embassy of Spain
Wed, Oct 8, 7:15
Alex (Natalie Tena, GAME OF THRONES, THE HARRY POTTER SERIES) must leave Barcelona and her boyfriend, Sergi (David Verdaguer), for a year-long residency in Los Angeles. Brilliantly told through Skype chats, phone calls and texts, Carlos Marques-Marcet’s accomplished contemporary romance recounts how the two do their best to stay connected but struggle with the physical and emotional distance between them. Tena and Verdaguer won a Special Jury Award for Best Acting at this year’s SXSW Film Festival for their performances. Best Film, Best Actress, Best Director, 2014 Malaga Film Festival, Best New Director, 2014 Seattle Film Festival. DIR/SCR Carlos Marques-Marcet; SCR Clara Roquet; PROD Tono Folguera, Sergi Moreno. Spain, 2014, color, 99 min. In Spanish, Catalan and English with English subtitles. RATED R
THE MILITANT [El lugar del hijo]
Sun, Sep 21, 7:00; Thu, Sep 25, 9:00
Uruguay, 2002. College student Ariel leads the student occupation of his Montevideo university, one of many countrywide strikes protesting the economic downturn. His father’s death prompts him to return to his hometown, where he finds the local student union more concerned with partying than trying to make a difference. A surreal fish-out-of-water satire, this thought-provoking film is anchored by Felipe Dieste’s assured portrayal of Ariel. Best Film, Cinematography, FIPRESCI Critic’s Award, 2013 Havana Film Festival; Official Selection, 2013 Toronto International Film Festival; 2014 San Francisco, Seattle, Rotterdam Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Manolo Nieto; PROD Lisandro Alonso, Andy Kleinman. Uruguay/Argentina, 2013, color, 121 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
THE LIBERATOR [El libertador]
Thu, Sep 18, 7:15 (Opening Night); Sat, Sep 27, 7:15
GOD’S SLAVE [Esclavo de Dios]
Sat, Sep 27, 3:30; Sun, Sep 28, 7:30
A riveting retelling of the events that led to the 1994 bombing of the AMIA building in Buenos Aires, told through the eyes of an Islamic terrorist and an Israeli special agent. Posing as a doctor, Ahmed has created a stable life in Venezuela with a wife and child, despite knowing his ultimate fate. Meanwhile, disgruntled Mossad agent David is dispatched to Argentina to follow up on a lead and thwart a potential attack. Venezuelan filmmaker and AFI alum Joel Novoa paints a complex portrait of two men on parallel paths of fanaticism in this enthralling political thriller. Special Jury Prize, 2014 Palm Beach Film Festival; Nueva Vision Award, 2014 Santa Barbara Film Festival. DIR Joel Novoa; SCR Fernando Butazzoni; PROD José Ramón Novoa. Venezuela/Argentina/Uruguay, 2013, color, 90 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
US, Puerto Rico & the World
*Special Presentation* THE BOOK OF LIFE
Q&A with filmmaker Jorge R. Gutierrez–FREE Screening!
Sun, Oct 5, 3:00
From producer Guillermo del Toro and director Jorge R. Gutierrez comes an animated comedy inspired by the Mexican Day of the Dead celebration. The film follows Manolo (voiced by Diego Luna), a young man who is torn between pleasing his family and competing for the heart of the beautiful Maria (Zoe Saldana) against charming Joaquin (Channing Tatum). Before choosing, he embarks on an incredible adventure that spans three fantastical worlds where he must face his greatest fears. Also featuring the voices of Cheech Marin, Héctor Elizondo, Danny Trejo, Ron Perlman, Ice Cube, Christina Applegate, Plácido Domingo and Eugenio Derbez. DIR/SCR Jorge R. Gutierrez; SCR Douglas Langdale; PROD Aaron Berger, Brad Booker, Guillermo del Toro, Carina Schulze, Aron Warner. US, 2014, color, 85 min In English. RATED PG
COWS WEARING GLASSES [Las vacas con gafas]
Sat, Sep 27, 12:45; Mon, Sep 29, 7:15
One of the emerging Puerto Rican talents, filmmaker Alex Santiago Perez finds the subtle humor in this old-age tale, where it’s never too late to grow up. A lonely old curmudgeon, Marso begins to take stock of his life when he discovers his sight is rapidly deteriorating. Making his living as a painter and art professor, the irony of his impending blindness isn’t lost on the eccentric. So he reaches out to his only kin, a daughter to whom he hasn’t spoken in five years, to make amends. Daniel Lugo gives a soulful performance as the flawed man in the midst of an end-of-life crisis. DIR/SCR/PROD Alex Santiago Perez. Puerto Rico, 2014, color, 92 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED