SIFF 2012 Festival Preview: European Film Picks, Part One

The 2012 Seattle International Film Festival begins on May 17th, 2012! In the next few days, we will be providing film previews for our top SIFF picks of the year. Times and dates are subject to change, so please visit siff.net before heading to theatres, or see HERE for all film preview coverage, including film selections from other regions of the world.   BREATHING Austria Directed by Karl Markovics A jailed teenager finds a renewed sense of purpose after parole officer gives him a new job and new responsibilities. A film lauded for its day-to-day quality and appropriately posited scenes and shots, Breathing is less mind-blowing than it is simply a solid tale of what happens when life exerts pressure

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Loverboy Film Review (2011)

Human trafficking is one of those things that it seems the world overall turns a blind eye to. Minus a few well-to-do NGOs and agencies desperately trying to create awareness, each year hundreds of thousands of individuals are illegally trafficked across the globe.  Some are sent for labor, some are sent for other reasons, but the great majority are sent for sexual purposes — as that is where the real money is. In Catalin Mitulescu’s film Loverboy, he explores the psychology that goes into the whole recruitment process.

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SIFF 2012 Festival Preview: Asian & Middle Eastern Film Picks

The 2012 Seattle International Film Festival begins on May 17th, 2012! In the next few days, we will be providing film previes for our top SIFF picks of the year. You can see all of this year’s coverage HERE. Times and dates are subject to change, so please visit siff.net before heading to theatres, or see HERE for all SIFF-related coverage.   A CUBE OF SUGAR Iran Directed by Reza Mirkarimi An extended family gathers for the youngest daughter’s wedding, but not all goes as planned. A glowing pastel canvas and sensual score are dreamy counterpoints to the anxieties and celebrations of three generations. May 22nd @ 6:00pm, Renton IKEA Performing Arts Center June 1st @ 6:30pm, SIFF Cinema Uptown

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Concept-Heavy Events: Fin De Cinema, The Wiz, Krautrock Classics, Signify Sanctify Believe

This post highlights some of our favorite multi-disciplinary arts events (centered mainly around music) coming up from like-minded co-conspirators in Seattle, Portland, and Los Angeles. More events for the next post, including two installments of REDEFINE’s Intuitive Navigation in Seattle and Portland (see last year’s HERE), and Seattle’s ambient music festival Substrata. Signify, Sanctify, Believe Portland, Oregon Presented by Xhurch and Open Engagement Multiple days – FREE A traveling troupe of performance art semi-spiritualists, Sanctify, Signify, Believe, are now on the road to conduct a series of head-scratching events that will leave you wondering about your connection to the spiritual world and religion. The party kicks off May 15th @ 1:00pm at repurposed church venue Xhurch, with an open house

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SIFF 2012 Festival Preview: Documentary Film Picks

The 2012 Seattle International Film Festival begins on May 17th, 2012! In the next few days, we will be providing film previes for our top SIFF picks of the year. Times and dates are subject to change, so please visit siff.net before heading to theatres, or see the Docsfest for all documentary films presented.   AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY United States Directed by Alison Klayman A feature-length documentary about Chinese contemporary artist Ai Weiwei, an influential and ground-breaking liberal artist considered a “God of Love” or the “Beijing Andy Warhol.” He controversially goes as far as giving the middle finger to the Motherland and telling it, “Fuck you.” May 18th @ 6:30pm, AMC Pacific Place 11 May 19th @ 4:00pm,

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A Grain Of Sand Environmental Documentary Preview & Stream

A Grain Of Sand Trailer Former newspaper editor Brendon Grimshaw decided one day to give up his career to live instead on Moyenne Island, a small island he purchased for ten-thousand pounds. In his thirty-seven years there, Grimshaw transformed the island by planting trees and creating nature trails, turning it into a remote paradise free of excessive development or outside influence. But without children to inherit his legacy, developers are eagerly waiting to encroach upon the island as soon as Grimshaw passes away. A Grain Of Sand openly questions the repercussions that development and commercial growth have upon the environment, in the name of greed, and often in the name of ecotourism. If the trailer above sparks your interest, you

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Where Do We Go Now? Film Review (Lebanon)

Directed by Nadine Labaki; 2011 Where Do We Go Now? opens on an unremarkable dirt road. A group of women hugs the frame tightly. They are of all shapes and sizes — young and old, supermodel beautiful and commoner modest — and upon first glance, their only shared quality is that they are all clad in black. Director Nadine Labaki slowly begins to focus on each woman, in succession, and it becomes apparent that the most subtle difference – the degree to which each woman is veiled – is the real point of focus. Some have their hair completely covered while others are not covered at all; yet all are approaching the camera in mutual accord. Their facial expressions are

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Attenberg Film Review (Greece)

Written and Directed by Athina Rachel Tsangari; 2010 Although I’m no Greek film aficionado, it doesn’t take one to figure out that the new film from writer and director Athina Tsangari is a strange observation on the societal and governmental downfall of Greece. Tsangari’s post-modern take on the modernist movement is certainly obtuse, all the while remaining inventive and intriguing. The film’s main plot involves a naive but mature woman by the name of Marina, played by Ariane Labed. It opens with Marina and her best friend Bella, played by Evangelia Randou, practicing how to kiss — a vivid and awkward scene that immediately places the viewer in a rather surreal world. As the camera finally pulls away and the

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Black Mountain – Year Zero Film Trailer

YEAR ZERO Vehicles, dirt, and griminess recalling those from Black Mountain’s video for “Old Fangs” receive a colorful lift via projections in caves, beautiful sunsets, hot babes, and… surf footage? Black Mountain have surprisingly teamed up with skate and surf company GLOBE to create a [heavily electronic influenced?] soundtrack for the upcoming surf film, Year Zero. Below is the trailer (which looks slow-motion fantastic) and a SoundCloud stream of their new track, “Mary Lou,” which will be found on the soundtrack for Year Zero. Globe describe the film, saying: YEAR ZERO is a modern take on high performance surfing set in a post-apocalyptic world, reminiscent of Mad Max or an HG Wells novel. It tells a story of a band

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Portland International Film Festival 2012: Festival Preview Guide, Part Two

Portland International Film Festival (PIFF) is upon us again, and we have whittled down their list of 100+ international shorts and full-length films to pick what we have determined to be the best and most interesting of the bunch. Portland International Film Festival 2012 runs from February 9th through the 25th, with more than one screening for most movies (exceptions generally being shorts and midnight film series). Looking for something to do this upcoming week? How about one of these films? Those interested in documentaries can see a list of documentaries we recommend for PIFF 2012 or see here for all PIFF coverage. SNOWTOWN AUSTRALIA Directed by Justin Kurzel Snowtown is director Justin Kurzel’s examination on a series of murders

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Portland International Film Festival 2012: Festival Preview Guide, Part One

Portland International Film Festival (PIFF) is upon us again, and we have whittled down their list of 100+ international shorts and full-length films to pick what we have determined to be the best and most interesting of the bunch. Portland International Film Festival 2012 runs from February 9th through the 25th, with more than one screening for most movies (exceptions generally being shorts and midnight film series). This particular list below focuses on some opening week films that are really worth watching! Those interested in documentaries can see a list of documentaries we recommend for PIFF 2012 or see here for all PIFF coverage. ABU, SON OF ADAM India Directed by Salim Ahmed Struggling to meet the financial needs for

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Portland International Film Festival 2012: Documentary Film Preview Guide

Portland International Film Festival (PIFF) is upon us again, and we have whittled down their list of 100+ international shorts and full-length films to pick what we have determined to be the best and most interesting of the bunch. Portland International Film Festival 2012 runs from February 9th through the 25th, with more than one screening for most movies (exceptions generally being shorts and midnight film series). This particular list below focuses on the best documentaries of the bunch, ordered alphabetically. See here for all PIFF coverage. EL SICARIO: ROOM 164 United States Directed by Gianfranco Rosi and Charles Bowden At this crucial point during Mexico’s drug wars, El Sicario: Room 164 reveals details about a hitman who worked for

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