SPOTLIGHT: It’s Hip, It’s Happening, It’s Scottsdale!

Global Lens is soon to screen at the Scottsdale International Film Festival for the second time, and Jeremy Quist adds yet another place to his ever-growing list of U.S. cities he’d like to visit…

Back in the mid ‘00s (remember those?) my sister spent two years at the University of Arizona in Tucson, and I never got the chance to visit her there. I always thought it would be fun to meet up with her and then drive together through the Arizona cities listed in the song Route 66―Flagstaff, Kingman, and (don’t forget!) Winona―which obviously was before I learned that Tucson is nowhere near the highway in question. You should know two things about me by now, from my ramblings in this monthly Spotlight column:

1) My geography, not so good. 2) There are a lot of cities that I’d really like to go to.

In regard to item #2, I have a list (a physical, written list!) of cities I’d like to visit. And this month, I add to that list yet another city in Arizona―Scottsdale! You may ask, “Why, Scottsdale, Jeremy?” to which I would answer, “Well, for starters, it has a bustling late-night downtown scene, it’s the spring training home of the San Francisco Giants, and it’s also been consistently included in the ‘100 Best Communities for Young People.’” You might then retort,

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NOW PLAYING: Gustavo Pizzi’s Award-Winning Portrait of an Artist, CRAFT!

It’s been a while since a film captured an actor’s world with the intelligence, creativity and insight of Craft.-Variety

A wonderful and perfectly calibrated film….” -BrazilNYC

Like a well-seasoned actor who has the ability to charm or break your heart, Gustavo Pizzi’s visually rich CRAFT does both — effortlessly and beautifully. Featuring a pitch-perfect performance by Pizzi’s real-life wife, Karine Teles (upon whom the dazzling narrative of a struggling São Paulo actress/celebrity impersonator is based), this debut feature illustrates the kind of thrill and anxiety that often accompanies one’s dedication to a dream. Now available for booking in your festival or theater, along with nine other award-winning and critically acclaimed films from the Global Lens 2012 series!

Programmers and curators: View the 2012 lineup now on Vimeo or Festival Scope and email us at bookings@globalfilm.org to schedule the films today!

Film fans and enthusiasts: Read the list below and click on the map to find out where you can catch these fantastic films!

Continue reading NOW PLAYING: Gustavo Pizzi’s Award-Winning Portrait of an Artist, CRAFT!

NOW PLAYING: Take a Wild Ride with PEGASUS and Nine Other Global Lens Films that Will Send You Flying!

“Pegasus is a stunning film…a must watch film from a director who is quickly becoming one of the main voices of the New Moroccan cinema wave.” -Africa Screens

This month’s feature, PEGASUS, is all about memory, and you won’t be forgetting this filmmaker’s debut feature anytime soon. Mohamed Mouftakir’s eerie, David Lynch-like mind-twister—and winner of FESPACO’s highest honor, the appropriately titled Golden Stallion award—is now available for booking in your festival or theater, along with nine other award-winning and critically acclaimed films from the new Global Lens 2012 series!

Programmers and curators: View the 2012 lineup now on Festival Scope and email us at bookings@globalfilm.org to schedule the films today!

Film fans and enthusiasts: Read the list below and click on the map to find out where you can catch these fantastic films!

Continue reading NOW PLAYING: Take a Wild Ride with PEGASUS and Nine Other Global Lens Films that Will Send You Flying!

FESTIVALS & AWARDS: Durban IFF, Lima FF, Taipei FF and more!

GREY MATTER (Global Lens 2012) showing at Durban International Film Festival

GREY MATTER and ON THE EDGE come full circle, CHICAMA premieres in Lima, and THE MIRROR NEVER LIES shines in Taipei!

A round of applause for all our GFI grant recipients and Global Lens films for lighting up screens at festivals all over the world!

Continue reading FESTIVALS & AWARDS: Durban IFF, Lima FF, Taipei FF and more!

MONTH IN REVIEW: Seasonal Changes

San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge in summer.

“The coldest winter I ever spent was summer in San Francisco.” – not Mark Twain

June saw the start of San Francisco’s official “summer,” when the fog bank rolls in off Ocean Beach around 5pm and stays there until Noon the next day. Sometimes, it doesn’t burn off at all, which makes for a cold, blustery “summer” day that San Franciscans know well, and which begs the often-quoted and incorrectly attributed Mark Twain-ish phrase: “The coldest winter I ever spent was summer in San Francisco.”

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NOW PLAYING: All Eyes on THE PRIZE and Nine Other Global Lens Films!

Wonderfully natural acting and evocative imagery….” -The Hollywood Reporter

“The Prize faces us with a piece of our history that hurts. That touches us. That puts us on the alert. With the strength and intensity of someone who has experienced what is being told, Paula Markovitch succeeds in creating a deep and sensitive story about freedom, identity and unwavering hope.” -Mar del Plata International Film Festival

The story: A political activist’s life-in-hiding on an isolated stretch of Argentina’s coastline is jeopardized after her seven-year-old daughter is selected to participate in a local school’s patriotic essay contest.

THE PRIZE — Paula Markovitch’s quietly powerful debut feature — blends personal nostalgia with an underlying sense of dread as it transports the viewer to Argentina in the years of the dictatorship and its notorious Dirty War. Featuring an utterly captivating performance by Paula Galinelli Hertzog as the 7-year-old Cecilia, THE PRIZE is now available for booking in your festival or theater, along with nine other award-winning and critically acclaimed films from the new Global Lens 2012 series!

Programmers and curators: View the 2012 lineup now on Festival Scope and email us at bookings@globalfilm.org to schedule the films today!

Film fans and enthusiasts: Read the list below and click on the map to find out where you can catch these fantastic films!

Continue reading NOW PLAYING: All Eyes on THE PRIZE and Nine Other Global Lens Films!

Deconstructing Experience: Life Beyond the TOLL BOOTH

Kenan, the film's protagonist, on his downward emotional spiral: Nothing like a pretty girl and a nice car to obsess over.

Kenan, the film's protagonist, on his emotional downward spiral. Nothing like a pretty girl and a nice car to obsess over.

Intern Andreas Streuli puts his academic pursuits of film and philosophy to work: an interpretation of Global Lens 2012 film TOLL BOOTH, (dir. Tolga Karaçelik, Turkey) tracing the emotional development of the protagonist, to look at the meaning of the film as a whole.

Despite being produced halfway around the world, we are confronted with a film with many parallels to our own lives— it is proof that cinema can be universally understood and appreciated.

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SPOTLIGHT: It’s All Happening in Portland

It’s like everywhere I turn these days, everything I do, there’s always Portland. For instance, I recently finished this book Wildwood by Colin Meloy. Where was the story set? Portland. Last week a friend of mine forwarded me a clip from this funny show. What was the show about? Portland. I just listened to this great album by Cloetta Paris. Where is her record label located? Portland. There are some really amazing international films touring the country at the moment. Where are they playing? Yeah, you guessed it: PORTLAND.

Specifically, the Northwest Film Center – a longtime screening-partner of ours – will be showcasing Global Lens 2012, beginning Wednesday, July 25, with Tolga Karacelik’s TOLL BOOTH, and running through the end of August. For more than 40 years, the Film Center (which is part of the Portland Art Museum) has been programming foreign, classic, experimental, and independent film year-round through thematic series, special retrospectives, and several annual film festivals. Thanks to the tireless efforts of its wonderful Director, Bill Foster, and its unstoppable Exhibition Program Manager, Ted Hurliman, the Northwest Film Center makes it possible for Portlanders to see new Global Lens films every year. Check our Continue reading SPOTLIGHT: It’s All Happening in Portland

FESTIVALS & AWARDS: Seattle IFF, Toronto Jewish FF, Silk Screen Asian American FF and more!

MOURNING and THE MIRROR NEVER LIES meet in Seattle, all eyes on THE PRIZE in Toronto and MOURNING, QARANTINA and TOLL BOOTH show their roots in Pittsburgh!

Congratulations are in order for our GFI grant recipients and Global Lens films, with special mention to those that have recently screened in festivals all over the world:

Latin American films in Global Lens 2012, clockwise from top right: CRAFT (Brazil), FAT, BALD, SHORT MAN (Colombia), THE FINGER (Argentina), THE PRIZE (Argentina).

CHICAGO LATINO FILM FESTIVAL: Citizens of the Windy City had a chance to see four Global Lens 2012 films from Latin America as part of the Chicago Latino Film Festival! CRAFT, (dir. Gustavo Pizzi, Brazil), FAT, BALD SHORT MAN (dir. Carlos Osuna, Colombia), THE FINGER (dir. Sergio Teubal, Argentina) and THE PRIZE (dir. Paula Markovitch, Argentina) all played during the festival’s 28th run.

INSIDE OUT TORONTO LGBT FILM FESTIVAL: BEAUTY (dir. Oliver Hermanus, South Africa, 2010 grant recipient) continues to light up screens, this time at the Inside Out Toronto LGBT Film Festival!

Continue reading FESTIVALS & AWARDS: Seattle IFF, Toronto Jewish FF, Silk Screen Asian American FF and more!

Behind the Curtain and After the Final Cut

Go beneath the surface to get the back-story on the films of Global Lens 2012

Click here to learn more about Kivu Ruhorahoza and GREY MATTER, the first narrative feature film produced in Rwanda by a native Rwandan filmmaker

Anyone familiar with the entertainment industry knows that sometimes off-screen activities can overshadow what’s happening in the films themselves. Take, for example, Lars von Trier’s controversy at Cannes last year or the preoccupation with Lindsay Lohan’s after-hours adventures. It’s easy to see why people like having this insider knowledge, but not all of it is scandalous—in fact, hearing the stories and secrets behind this year’s Global Lens films prove that there can be substance behind the curtain and after the final cut.

For example, Kivu Ruhorahoza’s GREY MATTER is about a young Rwandan filmmaker struggling to create a film that might help him reconcile the trauma of genocide. In reality, Kivu was only 12 years old during the 1994 Rwandan genocide and lived in constant fear for his family’s welfare. At the age of 16, he set out to become a filmmaker in a country with scarcely a tripod or sound equipment suitable for his camera. Needless to say, GREY MATTER’s story line of someone battling the odds to make a tough film is a direct expression of his artistic path

Continue reading Behind the Curtain and After the Final Cut