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Thread: MILL VALLEY FILM FESTIVAL #45 (October of 6-16, 2022)

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    MILL VALLEY FILM FESTIVAL #45 (October 6-16, 2022)



    FESTIVAL COVERAGE THREAD

    MILL VALLEY FILM FESTIVAL #45 (October 6-16, 2022)


    OUR FATHER, THE DEVIL (ELLIE FOUMBI)

    MVFF45 is based, as usual, in Marin County, California, at the CinéArts Sequoia, the Smith Rafael Film Center and the Lark Theater in Larkspur, and the event’s partnership with the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive continues. The 2022 edition adds a new venue in San Francisco’s Roxie Theater, which will host screenings Oct. 15-16.

    See an intro to the festival on Datebook (San Francisco Chroniicle). Here are the titles I have an eye on with excerpts from the festival blurbs:

    FaultLine (Rob Nilsson) This latest feature from celebrated Bay Area filmmaker Rob Nilsson is the third installment in his breathtaking Nomad Trilogy, in which colorful wanderers uncover deep human truths about our divided country. Set against breathtaking natural wonders, Faultline is equal parts shocking and calming, a gritty and beautiful cinematic poem. – World Premiere

    Finding Her Beat (Dawn Mikkelson, Keri Pickett)Right before pandemic lockdown 2020, eighteen leading Japanese and North American women taiko drummers realize their shared dream with the groundbreaking performance, HERbeat: Taiko Women All-Stars. In this full-bodied, male-dominated artform, they weave together their own joyful rhythms and styles to thunder through the taiko world and beyond.

    Home is Somewhere Else (Carlos Hagerman, Jorge Villalobos) (US, animated documentary feature. Three distinctive visual styles illuminate individual stories in this heartfelt animated documentary that measures the impact of American immigration policy, injecting empathy into a political debate long overwrought with rhetoric. In Spanish and English with Spanish subtitles.

    Our Father, the Devil (Ellie Foumbi) In Cameroonian-American filmmaker Ellie Foumbi’s ravishing and provocative feature debut, an African refugee’s modest life in a sleepy French mountain town is irrevocably shattered when she recognizes a newly arrived Catholic priest as a disturbing figure from her violent past. In French with English subtitles – West Coast Premiere

    Path of the Panther (Carlton Ward Jr.) A wildlife photographer, veterinarians, ranchers, conservationists, and indigenous people of the southern Everglades join forces to track and protect the endangered Florida panther.

    Provo (Emma Thatcher)Thatcher plays a young woman on an impromptu road trip from Illinois to Utah for a last visit with her dying, estranged father. With whip-smart dialogue, unexpected revelations, and beautiful handheld camerawork

    The Art of Eating: The Life of M.F.K. Fisher (Gregory Bezat) WORLD PREMIERE. About the famous American food writer (1908–1992), author of 27 books, including a translation of the French classic The Physiology of Taste by Brillat-Savarin. She was praised for the excellence of her prose by the poet W.H. Auden. She learned about food living in France and Switzerland and through frequent travels and wrote about it primarily while living in Northern California.

    The Passengers of the Night (Mikhaël Hers, France) Charlotte Gainsbourg plays a newly single woman in 1980s Paris. Along with her children, she navigates an eventful decade of personal change in Hers‘ drama of ordinary lives that nonetheless prove distinctively engrossing. In French with English subtitles – US Premiere

    The Young Vote (Diane Robinson). About the effort to get out this relatively passive part of the electorate.

    Triple Trouble (US, narrative feature, dirs. Homer Flynn, The Residents) The latest issuance from long-running Bay Area avant-garde innovators The Residents is a wacky, surreal tale of paranoid panic that incorporates elements from their famously abandoned 1970s-era feature project Vileness Fats. It’s a San Francisco-set black-and-white comic nightmare whose hero is asked, “Are you taking your meds?” Of course, he’s not! This title also available via streaming – California Premiere

    Tukdam - Between Worlds (Donagh Coleman) Ancient tradition and modern science collide in this extraordinary documentary about the Tibetan Buddhist practice of meditating at the deepest level of consciousness right before death. Researchers investigate how, for practitioners of “tukdam,” the cessation of the body’s functions is not necessarily life’s clear-cut end but instead a pliant threshold

    We Dream of Robots (Pablo Cascuberta) (Uruguay, documentary feature ) A determined group of teenagers from the Uruguayan countryside tackle math, science, and the physics of friendship as they get set to test their skills in the first robotics competition ever held in Latin America. This inspiring doc showcases the creative spark that fuels their dedication to building a better future for all. Ages 10+ In Spanish with English subtitles; This title also available via streaming – North American Premiere

    Whina (James Napier Robertson, Paula Whetu) This inspirational drama recounts the extraordinary life of New Zealand’s Dame Whina Cooper, a courageous Māori woman whose lifelong activism on behalf of her people culminated at age 79, when she led a month-long march stretching the length of the country from North to South, to protest the loss of Indigenous land. In English and Maori with English subtitles – North American Premiere.


    THE ART OF EATING: THE LIFE OF M.F.K. FISHER (GREGORY BEZAT)
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 09-20-2022 at 02:18 PM.

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    MVFF45 - featured events.


    GLASS ONION: A KNIVES OUT MYSTERY

    (From Datebook, San Francisco Chronicle)

    Opening night: GLASS ONION: A KNIVES OUT MYSTERY (Rian Johnson)
    6 p.m. Oct. 6, CinéArts Sequoia and Smith Rafael Film Center; followed by party at Marin Country Mart in Larkspur.

    Tribute, directing: James Gray (ARMAGEDDON TIME)
    6:30 p.m. Oct. 8, Smith Rafael Film Center.

    Spotlight: WOMEN TALKING (Sarah Polley)
    5 p.m. Oct. 9, Smith Rafael Film Center (Mind the Gap Award, ensemble).

    Centerpiece: TILL (Chinonye Chukwu)
    7 p.m. Oct. 11, CinéArts Sequoia (Mind the Gap Award, creativity and truth).

    Tribute, acting: Brendan Fraser
    THE WHALE (Darren Aronofsky), 7 p.m. Oct. 13, CinéArts Sequoia.

    Spotlight, debut feature: NANNY (Nikyatu Jusu)
    6 p.m. Oct. 15, CinéArts Sequoia.

    Closing night: THE GOOD NURSE (Tobias Lindholm)
    5 p.m. Oct. 16, CinéArts Sequoia and Smith Rafael Film Center; followed by party at Mill Valley Depot Plaza.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 09-13-2022 at 09:31 PM.

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    Intros at Mill Valley: two new French films


    MELVIL POUPAUD, LÉA SEYDOUX IN ONE FINE DAY

    Screening in Mill Valley Film Festival
    October 8th, 4:00pm at Smith Rafael Film Center
    October 9th, 7:00pm at BAMPFA

    ONE FINE MORNING/UN BEAU JOUR (Mia Hansen-Løve)
    Plotline: Sandra (Lea Seydoux) is a widowed young mother raising her daughter on her own, while also caring for her sick father (Pascal Greggory). She’s dealing with the loss of the relationship she once had with her father, while she and her mother and sister fight to get him the care he requires. At the same time, Sandra reconnects with Clément (Melvil Poupaud), a friend she hasn’t seen in a while and, although he’s married, their friendship soon blossoms into a passionate affair. ( is a Sony Pictures Classics release, runs 112 minutes, is in French with English subtitles, and is currently not rated by the MPA. The film premiered in Directors' Fortnight at Cannes. It's US debut was at Telluride Sept. 2.)

    THE PASSSENGERS OF THE NIGHT/LES PASSENGERS DE LA NUIT (Mikhaël Hers)
    Plotline: Paris, 1980s. Elisabeth has just been left by her husband and has to take care of her two teenagers, Matthias and Judith. She finds a job in a night radio show, where she meets Talulah, an idle girl whom she takes under her wing. Talulah discovers the warmth of a home and Matthias the possibility of a first love, while Elisabeth makes her own way, perhaps for the first time. They all love each other, struggle with each other... and their lives perhaps begin anew. (Debuted Berlin Feb. 2022. Mill Valley is the US premiere.)


    CHARLOTTE GAINSBOURG IN THE PASSENGERS OF THE NIGHT
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 09-20-2022 at 03:27 PM.

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    Filmleaf review:
    THE ART OF EATING: THE LIFE OF M.F.K. FISHER (Gregory Bezat 2022)

    She was a "food writer" when they weren't all over the internet. When there was no internet. And she was so much more, the poet W.h. Auden said no one in American wrote better prose. A complicated sensualist with a difficult life. This first feature-length documentary about her may not capture all that, but it's an introduction that may whet readers' appetites for her 27 books.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 09-27-2022 at 11:40 PM.

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    Filmleaf capsule review:
    ONE FINE MORNING (Mia Hansen-Løve 2022)

    From Directors' Fortnight at this year's Cannes but it could perfectly well have been in Competition, this eighth feature by the French director who began as an actress and life companion with Olivier Assayas packs the kind of emotional wallop and has the directness of her best work. Adultery, single-parent child-rearing, and a father with neurodegenerative disease are interwoven subjects. Also in the NYFF Main Slate.

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    THE PASSENGERS OF THE NIGHT/LES PASSAGERS DE LA NUIT (Mikhael Hers 2022)


    Time-lapse tale of a Parisian mom left by her husband who gets a job at a nighttime talk show and raises two teen kids on her own, along with a waif she picks up. Perfectly fine and full of sweet sadness and subtlety - and Charlotte Gainsbourg. But it avoids the hard stuff Mia Hansen-Løve so powerfully takes on.

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    PATH OF THE PANTHER (Carlton Ward Jr. 2022)

    Conservation photog Ward, from a family many generations in Florida, tracks and protects the endangered Florida panther.

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    WE DREAM OF ROBOTS/SOÑAR ROBOTS (Pablo Casaberta 2022)

    Uruguayan kids from far-flung rural environments, competing in an international robotics fair, have surprising success, form lasting bonds, and despite the pandemic are inspired with plans for the future - and your own mind may be blown. A delightful, inspiring documentary in Spanish suitable for all from age ten up.

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    PROVO (Emma Thatcher 2022)

    Modest indie tale of a dissipated ex-Mormon going back from Chicago (home base of the filmmakers) to see her dying father surprises with the authenticity its characters and acting.

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    FINDING HER BEAT (Dawn Mikkelson, Keri Pickett 2022)

    A documentary about women who have triumphed in Japanese Taiko drum performance, traditionally the domain only of men. The focus is on an historic joint performance of female Taiko artists from Japan and North America in Minnesota just before the pandemic shutdown. A thoroughly conventional film that tries to cram too much into its 90 minute run-time, but its ebullience and hopefulness are too strong to object.

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    THE YOUNG VOTE (Diane Robinson 2022)

    A short film about the importance of getting out the biggest block in the American electorate, the 18-29 voters. Robinson uses a conventional talking head presentation - which still works for a utilitarian informational doc like this one - and provides young role models, white, black, Latino, to show how the percentage of participants has grown since 2016 and how gerrymandering, shutting down polling places, and other ways of restricting the vote, are at war with this.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 10-02-2022 at 09:48 PM.

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