Thursday, May 08, 2008

Festival Sandwich

I hope some of you were able to make the screening in Saturday of French Kiss. The last film in this series of the Saturday Film Forum will be Moulin Rouge! and will be screened on May 31st.

In the meantime, we are currently between major film festivals (hence the sandwich!). Tribeca Film Festival ran from April 23rd to May 4th and Cannes International Film Festival starts on May 14th.
The Tribeca Film Festival was started by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal and Craig Hatkoff following 9/11 to help build economic and cultural revitalization of lower Manhattan. Since its founding, the festival has been attended by over two million attendees and has generated 425 million in economic activity for New York City. It was recently announced that this year’s festival had an attendance of 155,000 moviegoers to 700 screenings and 14 panel discussions. The winners of the big awards this year were:

Cadillac Award (audience choice): War Child: A documentary based on the life of hip-hop artist Emmanuel Jal, a veteran of the 20-year civil war in southern Sudan. Now in his 20s, this former “lost boy” is using his music to raise awareness about the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Sudan and the plight of child soldiers throughout the world.

Founder Award for Best Narrative Film: Let the Right One In: Twelve year old Oskar gets relentlessly bullied by day and by night he dreams of revenge. This beautifully touching tale tells of the first romance for bullied 12-year-old Oskar and the girl next door, Eli… who also happens to be a vampire.

Best Documentary Feature: Pray the Devil Back to Hell: After more than a decade of civil wars leading to more than 250,000 deaths and one million refugees, a group of courageous women rose up to force peace on their shattered Liberia and propel to victory the first female head of state on the African continent.

Sometimes it takes a bit of time for festival films to make the local art house, but these would be worth keeping an eye out for viewing in the future.

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