The largest annual film event in the Upper Midwest returns...
The Film Society of Minneapolis St. Paul announces the 2012 Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival, returning to the five screens of the St. Anthony Main Theatre April 12 through May 3. The program of this exciting three-week celebration of independent filmmaking from around the globe will include some 250 documentary, narrative, and short films from more than 60 countries, visits from numerous international filmmakers and celebrities, and a host of gala events, parties, and receptions.
The Festival lineup includes a Spotlight on the Middle East highlighting the current rich mix of films coming out of Israel, many Arab countries including those in North Africa, and Turkey, long known as the gateway from East to West - curated by Alissa Simon Senior Programmer at the Palm Springs International Film Festival. Also included is the always highly anticipated MINNESOTA-Made Showcase returning with great offerings from our own back yard - curated by Tom DeBiaso Professor of Media Arts at MCAD.
In addition, and in recognition of the 50th anniversary of The Film Society this year, Festival fare will include a retrospective highlighting favorite films from the last half-century, and a look forward to the next 50 years of innovative Film Society programming.
Save the date - Saturday Evening, April 21 - for our 50th Celebration Bash! The Festival will also stage an array of panels, discussions, presentations and special events including Opening and Closing Night Galas, three MINNESOTA-Made parties, live music events.
Early Bird Festival Titles:
Andrew Bird: Fever Year - Dir. Xan Aranda - Documentary - USA
Director Xan Aranda documents the culminating months of one of acclaimed musician Andrew Bird's most rigorous years of touring, featuring music steeped appearances from MN native Martin Dosh, and riveting live performance footage. Director present. Musicians invited.
Elena - Dir. Andrei Zvyaginstev - Narrative - RUSSIA
With a nod to classic noir, this impressive drama from Russia's Andrei Zvyaginstev (The Return) is an outstanding Russian drama of fractured families, money and quiet desperation. 2011 Special Jury Prize at Un Certain Regard. One of 2011's most accomplished films from any country. Hollywood Reporter.
Free Men - Dir. Ismaël Ferroukhi - Narrative - ALGERIA/FRANCE
Inspired by real events in WWII German-occupied Paris, a young unemployed Algerian named Younes (played by break-out star, Tahar Rahim) transforms from a politically uninformed immigrant into a full-fledged member of the Resistance.
Majority - Dir. Seren Yüce - Narrative - TURKEY
Premiered at the Venice International Film Festival where it won the award for best debut film. One of the best Turkish films of the year. With impeccable narration and no-nonsense style this moral tale explores the timeless shadow of fathers over sons.
Nuit #1 - Dir. Anne Émond - Narrative - QUEBEC, CANADA
In this Festival circuit darling, two twenty-something Montrealers have a chance encounter at a rave that leads to bold explorations of intimacy, love, and honesty. A dazzling study of a one night stand from first-time director Anne Émond. Director and star present.
Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth - Dir. Jennifer Baichwal - Documentary - CANADA/USA/ARMENIA
Acclaimed author Margaret Atwood's visionary work Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth is the basis for this riveting and poetic documentary on "debt" in its various forms--societal, personal, environmental, spiritual, criminal, and of course, economic. (Zeitgeist Films)
Restoration - Dir. Joseph Madmony - Narrative - ISRAEL
An Israeli film more about the internal state of its characters than the state of the country, Restoration is the kind of small-scale, well-crafted story that used to be a staple of European cinema and is rarely seen nowadays, at least in the U.S. It's a potent formula in the hands of fine actors and a director like Yossi Madmony. Hollywood Reporter.
The Salt of Life - Dir. Gianni Di Gregorio - Narrative - ITALY
In his warm and witty follow-up to his 2010 sleeper hit Mid-August Lunch, writer-director-actor Gianni Di Gregorio has created another sparkling comic ode to the ladies in his life--but this time he plays a middle-aged retiree who has become invisible to all distaff Romans, regardless of age or relation. (Lincoln Center)
Woman in the Fifth - Dir. Pawel Pawlikowski - Narrative - FRANCE/POLAND/UK
American novelist Tom Ricks (Ethan Hawke) arrives in Paris determined to renew a relationship with his estranged wife and daughter. Then Tom meets Margit (Kristin Scott Thomas)... This hypnotic, sensual and romantic film sports a lusciousness that's as unfashionable as it is pleasurable.
The Film Society of Minneapolis St. Paul presents the very best of national and international independent cinema on Screen 3 at St. Anthony Main Theatre, 115 SE Main Street, Minneapolis, MN 55414. www.mspfilmsociety.org
For more information about the 2012 Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival and other Film Society programming, contact Susan Smoluchowski at 612 331-7563 or visit www.mspfilmsociety.org.