November 29, 2015



November 26, 2015


Another black man has been killed by police and the media is celebrating the fact that there wasn't any violence on the part of protesters.

Another black man has been killed by police and the media is celebrating the fact that there wasn’t any violence on the part of protesters.


November 25, 2015



November 18, 2015

Elvis Costello and the Attractions: "No Action" (1978)

As much as Elvis Costello tries to disown his original persona and music as being Punk, he should own it; he certainly did back in 1978. You can't tell me this isn't PUNK as fuck.

Nouvelle Vague - Too Drunk To Fuck

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American Film InstituteAmerican Film Institute 


Opens with A PERFECT DAY; Closes with THE TREASURE

28th Edition of the Showcase Runs December 1–20 with
More Than 50 Films from the 28 EU Member States

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, SILVER SPRING, MD, November 18, 2015 — The American Film Institute (AFI) announces today the complete slate of films for the 2015 edition of its AFI European Union Film Showcase, taking place December 1–20 at the historic AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, Maryland. This year’s AFI European Union Film Showcase is generously supported by the Delegation of the European Union to the United States as the presenting partner through the EU's Getting to Know Europe grant. Now in its 28th year, the AFI European Union Film Showcase highlights the year’s best European filmmaking, featuring a selection of more than 50 films representing all 28 European Union member states, including international film festival award winners, regional box office hits, debut works by promising new talents and many countries’ official submissions for the Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award®.

This year’s AFI European Union Film Showcase will open December 1 with Fernando León de Aranoa’s A PERFECT DAY (Spain), a darkly comedic portrait of aid workers attempting to provide clean water during the aftermath of the Balkan War, starring Oscar® winners Benicio Del Toro (TRAFFIC, SICARIO) and Tim Robbins (MYSTIC RIVER, THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION) alongside Olga Kurylenko (QUANTUM OF SOLACE, OBLIVION) and Mélanie Thierry (THE ZERO THEOREM). The film will be followed by a Q&A with filmmaker Fernando León de Aranoa and a reception, with support for the evening provided in part by the Embassy of Spain and SPAIN arts & culture.

The Closing Night film, THE TREASURE (Romania), directed by Corneliu Porumboiu (POLICE, ADJECTIVE; 12:08 EAST OF BUCHAREST), is a deadpan comedy of manners that premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, where it won the Prix Un Certain Talent.

The Showcase’s Special Presentations section includes Paolo Sorrentino’s YOUTH (Italy) starring Michael Caine, Harvey Keitel, Jane Fonda, Paul Dano and Rachel Weisz; THE LADY IN THE VAN (United Kingdom) starring Maggie Smith; Jacques Audiard’s Cannes Palme d’Or winner DHEEPAN (France); BODY (Poland) directed by Malgorzata Szumowska, winner of the Best Director prize at the 2015 Berlin International Film Festival; 45 YEARS (United Kingdom) starring Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courtenay, winners of Best Actress and Actor at Berlin; Cannes Grand Prix Winner SON OF SAUL (Hungary); Berlin Silver Bear prize winner AFERIM! (Romania); festival favorite MY GOLDEN DAYS (France) directed by Arnaud Desplechin; Venice Film Festival premiere A WAR (Denmark) directed by Tobias Lindholm (A HIJACKING); and A ROYAL NIGHT OUT (United Kingdom) starring Sarah Gadon, Bel Powley, Emily Watson and Rupert Everett.

Other highlights include the U.S. premiere of MA MA (Spain) starring Penélope Cruz; DISORDER (France) starring Matthias Schoenaerts and Diane Kruger; THE WAIT (Italy) starring Juliette Binoche; SECOND COMING (United Kingdom) starring Idris Elba; Matteo Garrone’s TALE OF TALES (Italy) starring Salma Hayek, John C. Reilly and Vincent Cassel; KILL YOUR FRIENDS (United Kingdom) starring Nicholas Hoult, James Corden and Rosanna Arquette; and Nanni Moretti’s MIA MADRE starring John Turturro.

Among the films featured are a number of 2015 Oscar® submissions for Best Foreign Language Film, including THE HIGH SUN (Croatia); A WAR (Denmark); 1944 (Estonia); THE FENCER (Finland); SON OF SAUL (Hungary); THE SUMMER OF SANGAILE (Lithuania); BABY(A)LONE (Luxembourg); AFERIM! (Romania); and THE TREE (Slovenia). 2014 Oscar® submissions include SIMSHAR (Malta).

Complete list of U.S. premieres:
MA MA (Spain)
EVA NOVÁ (Slovakia)
BABY(A)LONE (Luxembourg)

Complete list of East Coast premieres:
A WAR (Denmark)
THE WAIT (Italy)
(BE)LONGING (Portugal) THE TREE (Slovenia)

A complete schedule of all festival screenings is attached. For photos, contact Josh Gardner at For updated information and tickets, go to

About the Delegation of the European Union to the United States
The EU is represented in the United States by the Washington, DC, Delegation of the European Union, which works in close coordination with the diplomatic missions of the 28 EU Member States. The EU Delegation presents and explains European Union policy to the U.S. Administration and to Congress, and analyzes and reports on the political, social and economic situation in the U.S. to its headquarters in Brussels. Through its engagement with political actors, the media, academia, business circles, cultural institutions and civil society, the EU Delegation raises awareness of EU issues and concerns, and promotes the importance of the EU-U.S. relationship among the broader American public. The Delegation is headed by Ambassador David O’Sullivan.

About the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center
AFI Silver is one of the nation's premier film theaters, building an appreciation of the art and artists through exploring and celebrating new and classic films and filmmakers from around the globe. AFI Silver offers a year-round program of the best in American and international cinema, featuring a dynamic mix of retrospectives, special events, tributes, on-stage guest appearances, specialty first-run movies, festivals, premieres, and education and community-based programs in a theatrical setting of the highest standards. Anchored by the stunningly restored 1938 Silver Theatre, the three-screen AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center is a state-of-the-art film and digital media exhibition venue that serves as a national model for preserving and honoring our shared film and film-going heritage. For more information about AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center, visit or connect at, and

About the American Film Institute
AFI is America’s promise to preserve the heritage of the motion picture, to honor the artists and their work and to educate the next generation of storytellers. AFI programs include the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and the AFI Archive, which preserve film heritage for future generations; the AFI Life Achievement Award, the highest honor for a career in film; AFI AWARDS, honoring the most outstanding motion pictures and television programs of the year; AFI’s 100 Years…100 Movies television events and movie reference lists, which have introduced and reintroduced classic American movies to millions of film lovers; year-round and special event exhibition through AFI FEST presented by Audi, AFI DOCS and the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center; and educating the next generation of storytellers at the world-renowned AFI Conservatory. For more information about AFI, visit or connect with AFI and

December 1–20


Sun, Dec. 13, 9:25 p.m.; Mon, Dec. 14, 9:25 p.m.
The world was shocked when the cases of Josef Fritzl and Wolfgang Priklopil emerged, both long-term kidnappers who kept their victims locked in basements for years. Now, arch provocateurUlrich Seidl (the PARADISE trilogy, DOG DAYS) returns to his documentary roots — or is it mock doc? — with this investigation of how his countrymen and women relate to their basements, a space, according to the filmmaker, for ones' most personal hobbies. Unusual sexual practices, band practice, creepy dolls and Nazi memorabilia are all on display here. Official Selection, 2014 Venice Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Ulrich Seidl; SCR Veronika Franz. Austria, 2014, color, 81 min. In German with English subtitles. NOT RATED


VIOLET (2014)
Thurs, Dec. 3, 9:40 p.m.; Mon, Dec. 7, 9:25 p.m.
Fifteen-year-old Jesse witnesses the stabbing death of his best friend at a shopping mall. Friends and family struggle to understand the seemingly unmotivated, random murder. Riding with his BMX crew, Jesse is alone in the crowd, his state of shock and grief represented by cinematographer Nicolas Karakatsanis’s (BULLHEAD) disconnected imagery, which employs rack-focuses between hazy and sharp figures and long-take portrait-like close-ups en route to a powerful emotional climax at a concert during Deafheaven's song “Violet.” Official Selection, AFI FEST 2014 presented by Audi; 2014 Berlin, Edinburgh, Karlovy Vary film festivals; 2015 New Directors/New Films. DIR/SCR Bas Devos; PROD Tomas Leyers. Belgium/Netherlands, 2014, color, 85 min. In Flemish and Dutch with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Wed, Dec. 2, 5:00 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 6, 9:20 p.m.
On the brink of bankruptcy, school teacher Nadezhda is pushed to the limits of reason in order to save her home from repossession. With little help from her unemployed, alcoholic husband, Nadezhda is forced to come up with the cash herself. As the deadline looms, she makes one last desperate attempt to save her family. Co-directors Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov won Best Debut Film at the 2015 Göteborg Film Festival and Best New Directors at the 2014 San Sebastián International Film Festival for this Dardennes-esque morality tale. Best Bulgarian Film, Audience Award, 2015 Sofia Film Festival; Official Selection, 2014 Toronto Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Kristina Grozeva, Petar Valchanov; PROD Irini Vougioukalou, Konstantina Stavrianou, Magdelena Ilieva. Bulgaria/Greece, 2014, color, 105 min. In Bulgarian with English subtitles. NOT RATED


2015 Oscar® Selection, Croatia
Wed, Dec. 9, 7:10 p.m.
Dalibor Matanić tells three different stories of love before and after wartime, with the couple in each story portrayed by talented young actors Tihana Lazović and Goran Marković. Set during the years of 1991, 2001 and 2011, the action takes place between two neighboring Balkan villages — one Serbian, one Croatian — with the lovers’ lives unavoidably being affected by the war. Despite a history of inter-ethnic hatred and distrust, there is also inter-ethnic love between these two peoples. Un Certain Regard Jury Prize, 2015 Cannes Film Festival; Official Selection, 2015 Karlovy Vary Film Festival. DIR/SCR Dalibor Matanić; PROD Ankica Jurić Tilić. Croatia/Serbia/Slovenia, 2015, color, 123 min. In Croatian with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Fri, Dec. 11, 5:05 p.m.; Sat, Dec. 12, 1:00 p.m.
Aging farmhand Ivo (Ivo Gregurevic) gives stranded motorist Mirjana (Mirjana Karanovic) a lift to the gas station one night. But his apparent altruism is immediately greeted with suspicion by the local villagers, who recall that Ivo once served time for rape and have never forgiven him. From this inciting incident, a series of troubling events will unfold over the course of the night, calling into question society's veneer of civility and just how far people have really moved on from the past. Best Cinematography, Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor, 2014 Pula Film Festival. Official Selection, 2014 Toronto, 2015 Rotterdam, Karlovy Vary film festivals. DIR/SCR Zvonimir Jurić; SCR Jelena Paljan; PROD Ankica Jurić Tilić, Eva Rohrman. Croatia/Slovenia, 2014, color, 98 min. In Croatian with English subtitles. NOT RATED


U.S. Premiere
Mon, Dec. 14, 10:00 p.m.; Wed, Dec. 16, 5:10 p.m.
A man wakes up on the beach with no memory of who or where he is. In his possession is a notebook of poems. He finds his way to a city, and in time meets people who claim to be his parents, and an ex-girlfriend. Each of them asserts that he is actually the famous poet Kostas Karyotakis, who committed suicide in 1928. And yet here he is, alive and well (enough), in 2015. With the anniversary of his death approaching, what if Kostas tried again? Filmmaker Kyros Papavassiliou's surreal mindbender plays with notions of identity, fate and free will. Official Selection, 2015 Rotterdam, Karlovy Vary film festivals. DIR/SCR/PROD Kyros Papavassiliou; SCR Maria Varnakkidou, Philippos Yiannikouris, Giorgos Zois; PROD Yannis Chalkiadakis, Monica Nicolaidou. Cyprus/Slovenia/Greece, 2015, color, 82 min. In Greek with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Czech Republic

U.S. Premiere
Tue, Dec. 15, 7:00 p.m.; Wed, Dec. 16, 9:15 p.m.
Real-life brothers Krystof and Matej Hádek play ne’er-do-well brothers “Cobra” and “Viper” in Jan Prusinovský’s gritty melodrama, shot through with moments of anarchic comedy. Junkie younger brother Cobra still lives at home with Ma (Jana Sulcová), periodically robbing houses to fund his addictions. It falls to older brother Viper to keep the other in line, but, with a drinking problem and job troubles of his own, he’s ill-equipped to look after anyone else. Best Actor for Krystof Hádek, 2015 Karlovy Vary Film Festival. DIR/PROD Jan Prusinovský; SCR Jaroslav Zvácek; PROD Ondrej Zima. Czech Republic, 2015, color, 111 min. In Czech with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Special Presentation
2015 Oscar® Selection, Denmark
Mon, Dec. 14, 7:00 p.m.
Danish commander Claus Pedersen (Pilou Asbæk, soon to play Euron Greyjoy on GAME OF THRONES) does his best to keep his troops safe and morale high on their deployment to Afghanistan, but is forced to make a fateful judgment call under enemy fire. "Retaining the matter-of-fact structural simplicity and procedural meticulousness of [Tobias] Lindholm’s superb thriller A HIJACKING, A WAR doesn’t seek to break new ground in the ongoing cinematic investigation of the Afghanistan conflict; rather, it scrutinizes the ground on which it stands with consummate sensitivity and detail.” — Variety. Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; 2015 Venice Film Festival. DIR/SCR Tobias Lindholm; PROD Tomas Radoor, René Ezra. Denmark, 2015, color, 115 min. In Danish with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Wed, Dec. 2, 9:25 p.m.; Wed, Dec. 9, 9:40 p.m.
Documentarian Jeppe Rønde's (THE SWENKAS) narrative debut is a haunting meditation on the real-life plague of teen suicides in a South Wales town. Sara (Hannah Murray, GAME OF THRONES, GOD HELP THE GIRL) arrives in Bridgend with her policeman father, who has been assigned to investigate the ongoing crisis. She befriends the local kids, for whom the loss of their own is intensely felt, and falls for melancholy Jamie (Josh O’Connor). After yet another suicide, the community’s mood darkens toward collective madness. Best Actress, Cinematography and Editing, 2015 Tribeca Film Festival; Official Selection, 2015 Rotterdam, Göteborg Film festivals. DIR/SCR Jeppe Rønde; SCR Torben Bech, Peter Asmussen; PROD Malene Blenkov, Michel Schønnemann. Denmark, 2015, color, 95 min. In English. NOT RATED

Fri, Dec. 4, 3:00 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 6, 9:30 p.m.; Thurs, Dec. 10, 9:25 p.m.
Danish documentarian Christian Braad Thomsen reflects upon the life and career of his longtime friend Rainer Werner Fassbinder, the enfant terrible and leading light of the New German Cinema, a workaholic, bisexual than 40 feature films by the time he died in 1982 at age 37. Interweaving rare news footage, photographs and excerpts from Fassbinder's films with a never-before-seen interview between Thomsen and Fassbinder, Thomsen considers Fassbinder's personality in Freudian psychoanalytic terms and in light of his formative years. Official Selection, 2015 Berlin Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Christian Braad Thomsen. Denmark, 2015, color/b&w, 109 min. In German with English subtitles. NOT RATED


2015 Oscar® Selection, Estonia
Sat, Dec. 5, 1:00 p.m.; Mon, Dec. 7, 5:05 p.m.
From Elmo Nüganen, director of Estonia’s highest-grossing film NAMES ENGRAVED IN MARBLE, which chronicled the 1918 student uprising against the Soviets, now comes the biggest-budgeted Estonian film to date. 1944 is a dramatic account of the bloody WWII Battle of Tannenberg Line on the Eastern Front, where Estonian civilians were caught between the German and Soviet armies, with native sons fighting on both sides. DIR Elmo Nüganen; SCR Leo Kunnas; PROD Ilkka Matila, Kristian Taska. Estonia/Finland, 2015, color, 100 min. In Estonian with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Sat, Dec. 12, 5:05 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 13, 3:15 p.m.
Martti Helde’s visionary and moving account of the Soviets’ 1940s deportation of thousands of Estonians to Siberia mixes live action with tableaux vivants: painstaking, painterly compositions of actors frozen in place. The restlessly mobile camera and black-and-white imagery from DP Erik Põllumaa combined with Liis Nimik’s requiem-minded score ensure that this experiment in stasis is very much a cinematic work. Audience Award, 2015 Göteborg Film Festival; Don Quixote Award, Estonian Film Award and Best Cinematography, 2014 Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival; Ecumenical Jury Award, 2014 Warsaw Film Festival; Official Selection, 2014 Toronto Film Festival. DIR/SCR Martti Helde; SCR Liis Nimik; PROD Piret Tibbo-Hudgins, Pille Rünk. Estonia, 2014, b&w, 90 min. In Estonian with English subtitles. NOT RATED


2015 Oscar® Selection, Finland
Thurs, Dec. 10, 7:15 p.m.; Sat, Dec. 12, 12:45 p.m.
The Soviet Union, 1953: Fearing he may be caught up in a widening Stalinist crackdown on his fellow Baltic dissidents, Endel Nelis (Märt Avandi) flees Leningrad for the small town of Haapsalu in his native Estonia. Taking a job as a gym teacher in the local high school, Nelis, a skilled and dedicated fencer, begins teaching his pupils the ways of this most elegant of sports. Based on a true story Klaus Härö’s (LETTERS TO FATHER JACOB, MOTHER OF MINE) rousing historical drama opens a window into Soviet and sports history alike. DIR Klaus Härö; SCR Anna Heinämaa; PROD Kaarle Aho, Kai Nordberg. Finland/Estonia/Gemany, 2015, color, 93 min. In Estonian and Russian with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Fri, Dec. 18, 9:25 p.m.
After an ankle injury sidelines the titular 80-yea-old misanthrope, he's forced to move in with his son and daughter-in-law, where a clash of generations ensues. With little patience for a post-1953 society, , he detests the hustle and bustle of modern life in Helsinki, and is particularly ruffled by his daughter-in-law, a successful businesswoman and a grump in her own right. Still, the two must learn to co-exist while his son is off tending to the family farm. Based on the popular books by Tuomas Kyrö, the film peels away the surly layers of its characters to reveal a crowd-pleasing family comedy.. Official Selection, 2014 Toronto, 2015 Seattle film festivals. DIR/SCR Dome Karukoski; SCR Pekko Pesonen, Tuomas Kyrö, from books by Kyrö, PROD Jukka Helle, Markus Selin. Finland, 2014, color, 104 min. In Finnish with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Special Presentation
Sat, Dec. 5, 5:15 p.m.; Tue, Dec. 8, 7:20 p.m
Jacques Audiard (A PROPHET, RUST AND BONE) won the 2015 Palme d’Or at Cannes for this gripping tale of three Sri Lankan refugees who, seeking escape from their war-torn homeland, pose as a family to gain safe passage to France. Once settled in a suburban Paris housing project, all three — “father” Dheepan (playwright and novelist Antonythasan Jesuthasan, himself once a child soldier with the Liberation Tigers), “mother” Yalini (Kalieaswari Srinivasan) and nine-year-old “daughter” Illayaal (Claudine Vinasithamby) — face new kinds of conflict. Official Selection, 2015 Cannes, Toronto, London, Chicago film festivals. DIR/SCR Jacques Audiard; SCR Thomas Bidegain, Noé Debré; PROD Pascal Caucheteux. France, 2015, color, 109 min. In Tamil, English and French with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Wed, Dec. 2, 7:15 p.m.; Tue, Dec. 8, 7:15 p.m.
Afghanistan war vet Vincent (Matthias Schoenaerts, BULLHEAD, RUST AND BONE) suffers from PTSD. He’s hired as a temp security guard at Maryland, the estate of Lebanese businessman Whalid (Percy Kemp). During a glitzy party, he gets a glimpse of Whalid’s icy German wife Jessie (Diane Kruger, INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS), and later overhears a conversation that seems to indicate Whalid is involved in illegal arms dealing. Vincent’s paranoid episodes increase when he’s hired as a bodyguard for Jessie and her son. The question now is whether the threat is outside the gates of Maryland, or already within them. Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; Cannes Film Festival. DIR/ SCR Alice Winocour; SCR Jean-Stéphane Bron; PROD Emilie Tisné. France/Belgium, 2015, color, 101 min. In French with English subtitles. NOT RATED

FATIMA (2015)
Sun, Dec. 13, 1:00 p.m.; Tue, Dec. 15, 7:15 p.m.
A Moroccan immigrant now living in Lyon, France, Fatima works long hours as a cleaning lady to support her two daughters, Nesrine, 18 and a promising pre-med student, and Souad, 15 and rebellious. Her relationship with her younger daughter is especially tense, with the two often bickering, and Fatima's poor grasp of French is a constant source of embarrassment to Souad. But the hard-working Fatima hasn't yet met a challenge she can't rise to. Official Selection, 2015 Cannes Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Philippe Faucon; SCR from books by Fatima Elayoubi; PROD Yasmina-Nini Faucon, Serge Noël. France, 2015, color, 79 min. In French with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Sun, Dec. 13, 7:20 p.m.; Wed, Dec. 16, 7:15 p.m.
This award-winning debut feature from writer/director Lucie Borleteau is notable for the strength and clarity of its vision and the courageous, charismatic performance of lead actress Ariane Labed (ATTENBERG, ALPS and next year's ASSASSIN'S CREED), who won Best Actress at the 2014 Locarno Film Festival. After a passionate farewell to her boyfriend Felix (Anders Danielsen Lie), ships engineer Alice (Labed) joins up with the in-transit cargo ship Fidélio to replace her predecessor, who has met with an untimely death. The process of getting acquainted with her new shipmates is complicated by the fact that the ship's captain, Gaël (Melvil Poupaud), is a former lover. DIR/SCR Lucie Borleteau; SCR Clara Bourreau; PROD Marine Arrighi de Casanova, Pascal Caucheteux. France, 2014, color, 97 min. In French, Romanian, English, Tagalog and Norwegian with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Thurs, Dec. 3, 5:00 p.m.; Tue, Dec. 8, 9:40 p.m.; Thurs, Dec. 10, 5:10 p.m.
Philippe Garrel (REGULAR LOVERS, JEALOUSY) returns with this exquisite romantic drama, an examination of marital infidelity and a freewheeling riff on life, art and the never-ending battle of the sexes. Married couple Pierre and Manon (Stanislas Merhar and Clotilde Courau) collaborate on documentaries. While researching his current subject, an aging Resistance fighter, at a film archive, Pierre falls hard for Elisabeth (Lena Paugam), a beautiful young intern. When Manon discovers the affair, her reaction surprises both Pierre and herself. Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; Cannes, Toronto, New York film festivals. DIR/SCR Philippe Garrel; SCR Jean-Claude Carrière, Caroline Deruas-Garrel, Arlette Langmann; PROD Saïd Ben Saïd, Michel Merkt. France/Switzerland, 2015, b&w, 73 min. In French with English subtitles. NOT RATED

U.S. Premiere
Sat, Dec. 12, 3:05 p.m.; Mon, Dec. 14, 5:05 p.m.
This wildly creative animated docudrama from Romanian filmmaker Anca Damian (CRULIC: THE PATH TO BEYOND) is a chronicle of the life story of Polish expat Adam Jacek Winkler (1937–2002), who settled in France after a lifetime of struggle and daring, from fighting against Poland’s Communist rule to a stint fighting for the Afghan mujahideen against the Soviet army. Drawing from Winkler’s journals, photography and sketchbooks, Damian employs a range of animated styles and collage techniques to bring Winkler’s amazing story to vibrant life. Special Mention, 2015 Karlovy Vary Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Anca Damian; SCR Anna Winkler; PROD Guillaume de Seille, Benedicte Thomas, Joanna Ronikier, Wlodimierz Matuszewski. Romania/France/Poland, 2015, color, 89 min. In French, English and Polish with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Special Presentation
Fri, Dec. 4, 7:15 p.m.; Wed, Dec. 9, 7:15 p.m.
Arnaud Desplechin (A CHRISTMAS TALE, 2008 AFI European Union Film Showcase) revisits his hapless romantic character Paul Dedalus, memorably played by Mathieu Amalric in 1996’s MY SEX LIFE... or HOW I GOT INTO AN ARGUMENT, this time exploring the character's wild younger years in the 1980s, from the pangs of first love to amateur international espionage. Making their screen debuts, Quentin Dolmaire as Paul and Lou Roy-Lecollinet as his on-again, off-again love Esther are vivacious and charming in this quirky, sexy coming-of-ager. SACD Prize (Directors' Fortnight), 2015 Cannes Film Festival; Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; 2015 New York, Chicago film festivals. DIR/SCR Arnaud Desplechin; SCR Julie Peyr; PROD Pascal Caucheteux. France, 2015, color, 123 min. In French with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Fri, Dec. 11, 3:00 p.m.; Sat, Dec. 19, 3:15 p.m.
Before they became radicalized terrorists and members of West Germany's infamous Red Army Faction, Ulrike Meinhof, Gudrun Ensslin and Holger Meins were journalists, artists and filmmakers. Documentarian Jean-Gabriel Périot recaptures the turbulent Germany of the '60s and '70s by interweaving a treasure trove of material culled from news footage, public affairs programming and student activist films, culminating with an excerpt from Rainier Werner Fassbinder's GERMANY IN AUTUMN. Compared to Germany today, it might seem like an alternate history if it weren't all true. Official Selection, 2015 Berlin, San Francisco film festivals. DIR/SCR Jean-Gabriel Periot; PROD Nicolas Brevière. France/Germany/Switzerland, 2015, color and b&w, 93 min. In German and French with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Sat, Dec. 12, 9:40 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 13, 7:15 p.m.
Angeliki Papoulia (DOGTOOTH) is galvanizing as Maria, a wife and mother driven to extremes by the collapse of her family, business and belief system in Syllas Tzoumerkas' scathing thriller. The film cross-cuts between the present, where Maria takes off in her SUV with a suitcase full of money and a fire behind her, and the past, where the interplay of marital and family relationships is revealed, and where her shopkeeper parents' mounting debt reflects Greece's recent economic crisis. This drama of family tensions, rages and sexual passions leads to an explosive conclusion. Official Selection, 2014 Locarno, 2015 Rotterdam, Karlovy Vary film festivals. DIR/SCR Syllas Tzoumerkas; SCR Youla Boudali; PROD Jeroen Beker, Maria Drandaki, Ellen Havenith, Titus Kreyenberg. Greece, 2015, color, 83 min. In Greek, English and German with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Fri, Dec. 4, 9:20 p.m.; Sat, Dec. 5, 9:20 p.m.
Alexis Alexiou's hyper-stylish neo-noir follows 32 hours in the life of jazz club owner Stelios (Stelios Manias) as he tries to raise the money he owes gangster The Romanian (Mimi Branescu). Stelios tries to collect from the various characters who owe him money, but everyone from his drug dealer to the Albanian strip club operator to his cop brother have the same excuse: the economic crisis. Official Selection, 2015 Tribeca, Karlovy Vary film festivals. DIR/SCR Alexis Alexiou; PROD Thanassis Karathanos. Greece/Germany/Israel, 2015, color, 116 min. In Greek, German and Romanian with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Thurs, Dec. 17, 7:00 p.m.; Sat, Dec. 19, 9:40 p.m.
In 1970s Budapest, Liza (Mónika Balsai) is a live-in nurse for an ailing widow (Piroska Molnár, TAXIDERMIA). Lonely Liza has an imaginary friend: long-dead Japanese pop singer Tomy Tani. When real-life love arrives for Liza, fun-loving Tomy Tani becomes jealous, murdering his rivals. Is Liza a fabled Japanese fox-fairy, cursed to lead her mortal lovers to their doom? Károly Ujj Mészáros' devilishly funny feature debut has won awards far and wide: Best Film, Best Special Effects, 2015 Fantasporto; New Directors Showcase Award, 2015 Seattle Film Festival; Jury Award, 2015 Fantaspoa; Audience Award runner-up, 2015 Fantastic Fest. DIR/SCR Károly Ujj Mészáros; SCR Bálint Hegedûs; PROD István Major. Hungary, 2015, color, 98 min. In Hungarian and Japanese with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Special Presentation
2015 Oscar® Selection, Hungary
Presented in cooperation with the Washington Jewish Film Festival
Mon, Dec. 7, 7:15 p.m.
László Nemes' feature debut is both a riveting Holocaust drama and a bold experiment in cinema aesthetics. The Auschwitz-Birkenau camp, 1944: Hungarian prisoner Saul Ausländer works in the Sonderkommando, assisting his captors with the extermination of his fellow prisoners. In the crematorium, Saul discovers the body of a boy he believes to be his son. As members of his unit ready their long-held plans to lead a camp uprising, Saul becomes obsessed with finding a rabbi in the camp to give the boy last rites and a burial. Grand Prix and FIPRESCI Prize, 2015 Cannes Film Festival; Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; Telluride, Toronto, New York, London film festivals. DIR/SCR László Nemes; SCR Clara Royer; PROD Gábor Rajna, Gábor Sipos. Hungary, 2015, color, 107 min. In Hungarian with English subtitles. RATED R


Fri, Dec. 4, 5:15 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 6, 5:45 p.m.
After the death of his sister, Will (Aiden Gillen, GAME OF THRONES) is given provisional release from prison six months early to act as guardian to hisnarcoleptic 11-year-old niece Stacey (Lauren Kinsella). With a welfare interview on the horizon, these two strangers can earn a measure of freedom if theycan figure out how to become a family. Best Irish Feature, 2015 Galway Film Fleadh; Official Selection, 2015 Berlin, Edinburgh film festivals. DIR/SCR Mark Noonan; PROD Conor Barry, John Keville. Ireland, 2015, color, 78 min. In English. NOT RATED


Fri, Dec. 11, 9:20 p.m.; Wed, Dec. 16, 7:00 p.m.
Expanding on his award-winning short film A CHIANA, which chronicled race riots in Calabria sparked by conflict between the locals and African immigrants, Jonas Carpignano's MEDITERRANEA is an illuminating portrait of the contemporary global refugee reality. Ayiva (real-life Burkinabe immigrant Koudous Seihon) and his friend Abas (Alassane Sy) make the dangerous journey from Burkina Faso to Italy, surviving the Sahara desert, murderous bandits and a stormy Mediterranean crossing. But in the land of their dreams, good work proves hard to find, and temptations for easier money abound. Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; 2015 Cannes, Karlovy Vary, Venice, London film festivals. DIR/SCR Jonas Carpignano; PROD Jason Michael Berman, Chris Columbus, Eleanor Columbus, Jon Coplon, Christoph Daniel, Andrew Kortschak, John Lesher, Ryan Lough, Justin Nappi, Gwyn Sannia, Marc Schmidheiny, Victor Shapiro, Ryan Zacarias. Italy/France/U.S./Germany/Qatar, 2015, color, 107 min. In French, Italian, English and Arabic with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Sun, Dec. 13, 5:05 p.m.; Tue, Dec. 15, 9:00 p.m.
Director Margherita Buy projects calm confidence, but the mounting strain of various life challenges is starting to take a toll. Her mother (Giulia Lazzarini) is hospitalized with heart trouble, her movie shoot is not going well, she's just broken up with her actor boyfriend (Enrico Ianniello) and her daughter (Beatrice Mancini) is flunking Latin. Add to this mix the arrival of American actor Barry Huggins (John Turturro), whose cartoonish ego and tales of working with Stanley Kubrick mask a ham actor with so-so Italian. The latest film from auteur Nanni Moretti blends melancholy with the madcap, to moving effect. Official Selection, 2015 Cannes, Toronto film festivals. DIR/SCR/PROD Nanni Moretti; SCR Francesco Piccolo, Valia Santella; PROD Domenico Procacci. Italy/France, 2015, color, 106 min. In English and Italian with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Sat, Dec. 12, 7:00 p.m.; Thurs, Dec. 17, 7:15 p.m.
Neapolitan filmmaker Matteo Garrone (former AFI European Union Film Showcase titles GOMORRAH and REALITY) gives full rein to his visionary imagination with this suite of fairy tales penned by Giambattista Basile (1566–1632). Even bawdier and bloodier than tales by the Brothers Grimm, Garrone’s film will fascinate fans of folklore and fantastic cinema. The international cast includes Salma Hayek, John C. Reilly, Vincent Cassel, Toby Jones, Shirley Henderson, Stacy Martin and Alba Rohrwacher. Score by Alexandre Desplat. Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; 2015 Cannes, Karlovy Vary film festivals. DIR/SCR/PROD Matteo Garrone; SCR Edoardo Albinati, Ugo Chiti, Massimo Gaudioso, from “Pentamerone” by Giambattista Basile; PROD Anne Labadie, Jean Labadie, Jeremy Thomas. Italy/France/UK, 2015, color, 125 min. In English. NOT RATED

Wed, Dec. 16, 9:20 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 20, 3:00 p.m.
This stunning first film from Piero Messina (AD on Paolo Sorrentino's Oscar®-winning THE GREAT BEAUTY) stars Juliette Binoche as Anna, a grieving mother holed up at a Sicilian villa. When her son’s girlfriend Jeanne (Lou de Laâge, BREATHE) shows up unexpectedly, Anna isn’t able to break the tragic news, instead pretending he will return in a few days. While waiting for him to arrive, the two strike up a complicated friendship, in which Anna can delay the inevitable and bask in Jeanne’s reality where her son still lives. This breathtakingly beautiful film marks Messina as a new talent to watch in Italian cinema. Official Selection, 2015 Venice, Toronto, London film festivals. DIR/SCR Piero Messina; SCR Giacomo Bendotti, Ilaria Macchia, Andrea Paolo Massara, from works by Luigi Pirandello; PROD Carlotta Calori, Francesca Cima, Fabio Conversi, Nicola Giuliano, Jérôme Seydoux. Italy/France, 2015, color, 100 min. In Italian and French with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Special Presentation
Thurs, Dec. 3, 7:00 p.m.
Longtime pals Fred (Michael Caine), a retired composer, and Mick (Harvey Keitel), a filmmaker, visit their favorite alpine spa in Switzerland, as they have for the past 20-odd years. The old friends walk, talk and spritz together in peace until the announcement of their children's divorce — Fred's daughter (Rachel Weisz) is married to Mick's son (Ed Stoppard) — intrudes upon their tranquility. This bittersweet rumination on life and how to live it from Oscar®winner Paolo Sorrentino (THE GREAT BEAUTY) also features Jane Fonda and Paul Dano as two Hollywood actors struggling with their own senses of self. Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; 2015 Cannes, Toronto film festivals. DIR/SCR Paolo Sorrentino; PROD Carlotta Calori, Francesca Cima, Nicola Giuliano. Italy/France/Switzerland/UK, 2015, color, 118 min. In English. RATED R


Presented in cooperation with the Washington Jewish Film Festival
Sun, Dec. 13, 9:00 p.m.; Thurs, Dec. 17, 5:10 p.m.
More than 100 years ago, two men were born in Riga. They would become revolutionary Soviet filmmaker Sergei Eisenstein and celebrated Russo-British philosopher Isaiah Berlin. Filmmaker Davis Simanis playfully explores their divergent paths throughout the important moments of the 20th century, leading to their sole meeting in post-war Moscow. From Eisenstein’s Hollywood encounters with Charlie Chaplin to Berlin’s time at the British Embassy in Washington, DC, Simanis employs spirited reenactments that mimic archival footage in a style that recalls both Guy Maddin and Woody Allen’s ZELIG. “A rarefied treat for cinematic historians.” — The Hollywood Reporter. DIR/SCR Davis Simanis, Jr.; PROD Liga Gaisa, Gints Grube. Latvia/Russia/UK, 2014, b&w, 69 min. In Latvian with English subtitles. NOT RATED


2015 Oscar® Selection, Lithuania
Sun, Dec. 6, 7:30 p.m.; Thurs, Dec. 10, 9:00 p.m.
Alanté Kavaïté won a Best Director award at Sundance for this rapturous portrait of two teenaged girls' summertime love affair. Staying at her parents' lakeside home for the summer, the sullen Sangaile (Julija Steponaityte) meets free-spirited local lass Auste (Aiste Dirziute) at an airshow. Auste, a talented artist and clothes designer, takes Sangaile under her wing. The two become fast friends and soon something more. Directing Award, World Cinema – Dramatic, 2015 Sundance Film Festival; Best Film, Best Actress and Best Art Direction, 2015 Lithuanian Film Awards. Official Selection, 2015 Berlin, Karlovy Vary film festivals. DIR/SCR Alanté Kavaïté; PROD Zivile Gallego, Antoine Simkine. Lithuania/France/ Netherlands, 2015, color, 88 min. In Lithuanian with English subtitles. NOT RATED


2015 Oscar® Selection, Luxembourg
U.S. Premiere
Mon, Dec. 7, 9:50 p.m.; Wed, Dec. 9, 5:10 p.m.
Living alone with his single mother, 13-year-old X is a troubled teen, removed from reality. He keeps to himself, not counting his imaginary friend Johnny, who taunts him and encourages him to act out. Sent into a remedial class after his latest violent outburst at school, X meets Shirley, and the two teens retreat into a world of sex, drugs and violence. But in finding each other, they just might have a chance to survive. Examining contemporary Europe through the eyes of two lost teens looking to connect, first-time narrative filmmaker Donato Rotunno adapted the story from a novel by Tullio Forgiarini. DIR/SCR Donato Rotunno; SCR/PROD Nicolas Steil; SCR from the novel "Amok" by Tullio Forgiarini. Luxembourg, 2015, color, 90 min. In Luxembourgish with English subtitles. NOT RATED


2014 Oscar® Selection, Malta
Tue, Dec. 8, 5:10 p.m.; Wed, Dec. 9, 9:45 p.m.
Based on a true story from the frontlines of Europe’s migrant crisis, set on the Mediterranean Sea around the tiny island country of Malta, south of Sicily. Young Theo is excited to go out on his father’s tuna fishing boat, the Simshar, for the first time. But things go terribly wrong and the boat sinks, leaving the crew stranded far out in the Mediterranean. Meanwhile, Red Cross doctor Alex has been dispatched to a Turkish merchant ship carrying rescued African migrants, including a pregnant woman. Their two stories converge on the high seas, with life-altering results. DIR/SCR Rebecca Cremona; SCR David Grech; PROD Leslie Lucey. Malta, 2014, color, 101 min. In Maltese with English subtitles. NOT RATED


NENA (2014)
Sat, Dec. 19, 11:00 a.m.
Saskia Diesing’s award-winning debut feature, an '80s-set coming-of-age tale, features a winning lead performance by Abbey Hoes. Growing up on the Dutch-German border, teenager Nena enjoys Goethe’s poetry and goth style, but really goes wild for her blue-haired, baseball-playing new boyfriend, Carlo. The two youths’ pursuit of happiness is tempered by Nena’s immense challenges acting as caregiver for her paralyzed father, whose desire to live is waning. Official Selection, 2015 Berlin Film Festival. DIR/SCR Saskia Diesing; SCR Esther Gerritsen; PROD Hanneke Niens, Hans de Wolf. Netherlands/Germany, 2014, color, 94 min. In Dutch and German with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Special Presentation
BODY (2015) [CIAŁO]
Fri, Dec. 18, 7:15 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 20, 1:00 p.m.
Małgorzata Szumowska won Best Director at the 2015 Berlin Film Festival for this oddball investigation into people's relationships with their minds, bodies and spirits. At a loss to cope with his anorexic, depressed daughter Olga (Justyna Suwala), her coroner father (Janusz Gajos) has her institutionalized for therapy. Olga's counselor Anna (Maja Ostaszewska) gets good results with the girls in her care, but has an unconventional sideline as a medium, putting the living in touch with their dearly departed. Olga's father is dismissive of Anna's "gift," but even he has seen the ghost of his dead wife once or twice... DIR/SCR/PROD Małgorzata Szumowska; SCR/PROD Michal Englert; PROD Jacek Drosio. Poland, 2015, color, 92 min. In Polish with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Sat, Dec. 12, 11:00 a.m.; Tue, Dec. 15, 5:10 p.m.
Documentarian João Pedro Plácido captures the look and feel of rural life in this portrait of a tight-knit community of farmers in the village of Uz in northern Portugal. Daniel is a young farmer, who, unlike many his age who have left Uz for the city, has chosen to stay home and continue the traditional working of the land. The film follows Daniel across a year's time as the seasons change and as the possibility of love with a girl from a neighboring village blooms. Official Selection, 2015 London Film Festival. DIR/SCR João Pedro Plácido; SCR Laurence Ferreira Barbosa; PROD Luís Urbano, Sandro Aguilar. Portugal/Switzerland/France, 2014, color, 78 min. In Portuguese with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Special Presentation
2015 Oscar® Selection, Romania
Fri, Dec. 11, 7:15 p.m.; Mon, Dec. 14, 7:15 p.m.
In the principality of Wallachia, life is more Dark Ages than Age of Enlightenment, even in 1835. Constable Costandin and his son have been dispatched by a nobleman to track down a runaway slave accused of seducing the landowner’s wife. Foul-mouthed and quick-tempered, Costandin rides roughshod on the local peasantry in his search, explaining to his teenaged son that he’s upholding the social order. Radu Jude won Best Director at the 2015 Berlin Film Festival for this visionary historical epic — a European “eastern” counterpoint to the American Western. Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; 2015 Berlin, Tribeca, Karlovy Vary, London film festivals. DIR/SCR Radu Jude; SCR Florin Lazarescu, PROD Ada Solomon. Romania/Bulgaria/Czech Republic/France, 2015, color, 108 min. In Romanian with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Tue, Dec. 15, 9:45 p.m.; Thurs, Dec. 17, 9:45 p.m.
On his way up to his apartment, Sandu overhears a violent argument between neighbors Laura and Vali. Later that day, he learns that Laura is dead — possibly murdered. When the police question the building’s tenants, Sandu says nothing. He goes back to his daily routine: work, home, walk the dog. But then Vali pays a visit. Radu Muntean (TUESDAY, AFTER CHRISTMAS) deconstructs crime movie conventions with this vision of a society too quick to sweep others' problems under the rug. “A moral dilemma of quasi-Dostoevskian proportions.” — Variety. Official Selection, 2015 Cannes, Karlovy Vary, Toronto, London Film Festivals. DIR/SCR Radu Muntean; SCR Alexandru Baciu, Razvan Radulescu; PROD Dragos Vilcu. Romania/France/Germany/Sweden, 2015, color, 93 min. In Romanian with English subtitles. NOT RATED

Closing Night
Sat, Dec. 19, 7:30 p.m.
Unemployed Adrian asks neighbor Costi for a loan to fend off foreclosure on his apartment. Rebuffed, Adrian entices Costi to become his partner on a scheme to dig up a mysterious treasure, the existence of which was promised by Adrian’s late grandfather. Splitting the cost of hiring a professional metal detector, the odd-couple fortune hunters hit the road. Based on a true story, this deadpan comedy of manners from Corneliu Porumboiu (12:08 EAST OF BUCHAREST; POLICE, ADJECTIVE) digs into Romania’s uneasy relationship with its past. Un Certain Regard Prize, 2015 Cannes Film Festival; Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; 2015 Karlovy Vary, Toronto, New York film festivals. DIR/SCR Corneliu Porumboiu; PROD Marcela Ursu. Romania/France, color, 89 min. In Romanian with English subtitles. NOT RATED


U.S. Premiere
Sat, Dec. 19, 1:00 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 20, 7:15 p.m.
Leaving her third stint in rehab for alcoholism, faded actress Eva Nová (leading light of Slovak stage and screen Emília Vásáryová) is intent on reconnecting with her estranged son Dodo (Milan Ondrík). But Eva is facing hard times and, with little hope to revive her acting career, must take a job at a grocery. For his part, Dodo wants nothing to do with his mother, but he has more in common with her than he might be willing to admit. This debut narrative feature from documentarian Marko Skop (OSADNÉ) won the FIPRESCI Prize at the 2015 Toronto Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Marko Skop; PROD Jan Melis. Slovakia/Czech Republic, 2015, color, 106 min. In Slovak with English subtitles. NOT RATED


2015 Oscar® Selection, Slovenia
Thurs, Dec. 17, 9:40 p.m.
Mother Milena (Katarina Stegnar), teenager Alek (Jernej Kogovsek) and nine-year-old Veli (Lukas Matija Rosas Ursic) don't venture outside their house. Across three chapters, each exploring the perspective of a single family member, the family's story and the reasons they fear their neighbors gradually come into focus. Sonja Prosenc's debut feature is a gripping drama that "masterfully maintains an air of steadily mounting tension" — Museum of the Moving Image. Official Selection, 2014 Karlovy Vary Film Festival. DIR/SCR/PROD Sonja Prosenc; PROD Rok Sečen, Sandra Ržen. Slovenia/Italy, 2014, color, 90 min. In Slovene and Albanian with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Opening Night
Opening Night: Tue, Dec. 1, 7:15 p.m. with reception, tickets $20/$18 AFI members
(Also screening Sat, Dec. 5, 3:05 p.m.)
The Balkans, 1995: Fighting has wound down and peace talks have begun, but problems still confront Mambrú (Benicio Del Toro) and his colleagues at NGO Aid Across Borders, including Tim Robbins, Mélanie Thierry and Olga Kurylenko. Tasked with removing a corpse from a well and decontaminating its water, their progress is impeded by roads laced with unexploded land mines, untrusting villagers, gun-toting bandits and bureaucratic red tape. This is a fine seriocomic warzone tale from Fernando León de Aranoa (MONDAYS IN THE SUN, PRINCESAS), with strong performances from its outstanding cast. Official Selection, 2015 Cannes, London film festivals. DIR/SCR/PROD Fernando León de Aranoa; SCR from the novel “Dejarse llover” by Paula Farias. Spain, 2015, color, 106 min. In English. NOT RATED

U.S. Premiere
MA MA (2015)
Sun, Dec. 6, 3:15 p.m.; Mon, Dec. 7, 7:10 p.m.
Academy Award® winner Penélope Cruz stars in the latest from visionary Spanish filmmaker Julio Medem (SEX AND LUCIA). Diagnosed with breas cancer and recently left by her husband, a chance encounter with a Real Madrid scout (Luis Tosar, CELL 211) leads to an unexpected romance for Magda (Cruz). Magda and her supportive doctor and family soldier on through treatment, until unexpected but welcome news presents a new set of challenges. Featuring a brilliant performance by Cruz, this transcendent melodrama is filled with love, warmth and, most of all, life. Official Selection, 2015 Toronto Film Festival. DIR/SCR/ PROD Julio Medem; PROD Penélope Cruz. Spain/France, 2015, color, 111 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED


Sat, Dec. 5, 11:00 a.m.; Tue, Dec. 8, 9:20 p.m.
Teenager John (played by Swedish pop star Ulrik Munther) returns to his home in rural Sweden after two years away in a secure institution. It's not immediately revealed what his crime was, but it soon becomes clear that the other kids in school have no intention of forgiving him. Magnus van Horn's powerful debut feature has won acclaim on the international film festival circuit and heralds the arrival of a distinctive new talent. Official Selection, 2015 Cannes, Toronto, London film festivals. DIR/SCR Magnus von Horn; PROD Madeleine Ekman, Mariusz Wlodarski. Sweden/Poland/France, 2015, color, 102 min. In Swedish with English subtitles. NOT RATED

United Kingdom

Special Presentation
Thurs, Dec. 10, 7:00 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 13, 3:00 p.m.
Plans for Kate (Charlotte Rampling) and Geoff (Tom Courtenay) Mercers’ 45th anniversary party are thrown into turmoil at the arrival of a letter informing Geoff that the body of his girlfriend Katya has been recovered from the mountain where she fell to her death 50 years ago. Shaken, Geoff withdraws, taking inventory of memories long shelved away. The news affects Kate just as deeply, as Geoff’s state of distraction breeds uncertainty and increasingly angrier emotions. Directed and written by Andrew Haigh (WEEKEND, HBO series LOOKING). Best Actor and Actress, 2015 Berlin Film Festival; Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; 2015 Karlovy Vary, Telluride, Toronto film festivals. DIR/SCR Andrew Haigh; from the story by David Constantine; PROD Tristan Goligher. UK, 2015, color, 95 min. In English. NOT RATED
Screenings supported by D.C. Academy of Collaborative Professionals

Fri, Dec. 18, 5:05 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 20, 5:15 p.m.
Sixtysomething Hector McAdam (Peter Mullan, TRAINSPOTTING) has been living rough in Scotland since an unspeakable family tragedy some 15 years before. Hector has his demons but he still has his dignity, and friendships with several others in straitened circumstances like his own, including Jimbo (Keith Allen) and Hazel (Natalie Gavin). With Christmas coming, Hector resolves to reconnect with his estranged siblings. Jake Gavin’s debut feature is a refreshingly unfussy celebration of caring and community, with wry comic touches amid the affecting personal drama. Official Selection, 2015 Edinburgh, Chicago film festivals. DIR/SCR Jake Gavin; PROD Stephen Malit. UK, 2015, color, 87 min. In English. NOT RATED

Fri, Dec. 11, 9:40 p.m.; Sat, Dec. 12, 9:20 p.m.
“Do these look like the shoes of someone who gives a f–k about the Velvet Underground?” Former A&R exec John Niven's cult novel, about music biz excess and Machiavellian maneuvering during the UK's late-'90s Britpop craze, is translated to the screen by first-time feature director Owen Harris in all its scathing outrageousness. Nicholas Hoult is Steven Stelfox, whose ruthless ambition, lack of moral compass and appetite for excess have gotten him far. But to get to the top, he'll have to sink lower than ever before. With James Corden, Craig Roberts, Rosanna Arquette, Edward Hogg and Moritz Bleibtreu. Official Selection, 2015 Toronto Film Festival. DIR Owen Harris; SCR John Niven, from his novel; PROD Gregor Cameron. UK, 2015, color, 100 min. In English. NOT RATED

Special Presentation
Sun, Dec. 6, 1:00 p.m.
Following THE MADNESS OF KING GEORGE (1994) and THE HISTORY BOYS (2005), former National Theatre director Nicholas Hytner and playwright Alan Bennett’s third screen collaboration may be their best yet, featuring a bravura performance by Maggie Smith. In 1973, the residents of the leafy London enclave of Camden Town found their liberal pieties tested by the arrival of an eccentric, elderly vagrant, Mary Shepherd (Smith), who lived out of her van and upset the neighborhood’s prevailing pretensions of charity and inclusiveness. Hustled from one parking spot to another, Shepherd eventually wheedled her way into the driveway of Bennett (Alex Jennings), a spot she would not relinquish for the next 15 years. Official Selection, AFI FEST 2015 presented by Audi; 2015 Toronto Film Festival. DIR/PROD Nicholas Hytner; SCR Alan Bennett, from his memoir and play; PROD Damian Jones, Kevin Loader. UK, 2015, color, 104 min. In English. RATED PG-13
Screening supported by Amtrak

Fri, Dec. 4, 9:45 p.m.; Sat, Nov 5, 9:45 p.m.
Things are grim up north, in the economically depressed Manchester and its surroundings of 1974. But on the dance floor of the local youth center, kids are grooving to American soul, a welcome source of joy amid their straitened circumstances. It’s there that John meets Matt, bonding over their shared love for the music and taste for the high life. Soon the two are making pilgrimages to the famous Wigan Casino dance hall and dreaming of becoming top DJs themselves. This labor of love for photographer-turned-filmmaker Elaine Constantine boasts spot-on period décor, fab threads and a soundtrack of floor fillers from the likes of Edwin Starr, Tobi Legend, Linda Jones and Frankie Valli. DIR/SCR Elaine Constantine; PROD Debbie Gray. UK, 2014, color, 102 min. In English. RATED R

Sat, Dec. 19, 5:15 p.m.
Playwright Debbie Tucker Green’s provocative feature film debut focuses on a modern-day miraculous conception incurred by a married, middle-class mother in Britain. The unexpected, unexplained pregnancy is devoid of any religious connotations, and causes upheaval in the family dynamics among wife Jackie (Nadine Marshall), husband Mark (Idris Elba, LUTHER, THE WIRE) and their 11-year-old son Jerome (Kai Francis Lewis). Official Selection, 2014 Toronto, London, 2015 Rotterdam film festivals. DIR/SCR Debbie Tucker Green; PROD Polly Leys, Kate Norrish. UK, 2014, color, 105 min. In English. NOT RATED

Special Presentation
at, Dec. 5, 7:30 p.m.; Sun, Dec. 6, 7:15 p.m.
V-E Day, 1945: after nearly six years of war, peace is won and London erupts into a spontaneous celebration, extending long into the night. Accompanied by two military officers, teenaged princesses Elizabeth (Sarah Gadon, A DANGEROUS METHOD) and Margaret (Bel Powley, THE DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL) are allowed by the King and Queen to slip out of Buckingham Palace incognito and join in the historic revelry. As portrayed by talented actresses Gadon and Powley, the royal sisters' big night out is an unforgettable and fun-filled affair, inspired by true events. With Emily Watson, Rupert Everett, Jack Reynor and Roger Allam. DIR Julian Jarrold; SCR Trevor De Silva, Kevin Hood; PROD Robert Bernstein, Douglas Rae. UK, 2015, color, 97 min. In English. NOT RATED

November 16, 2015



November 16, 2015 – Andrea Iervolino and Monika Bacardi’s AMBI Pictures will finance and produce a remake of Christopher Nolan’s iconic, twist-laden film “Memento.”

Writer/director Christopher Nolan adapted “Memento” from a short story by his brother Jonathan Nolan titled  "Memento Mori", and the unusual, neo-noir psychological thriller took audiences by storm upon release in 2000 and has since achieved cult hit status with a fervent following.

Starring Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, and Joe Pantoliano, “Memento” was lauded for its nonlinear narrative structure and motifs of memory, perception, grief, and self-deception. The film was a box office success and received numerous accolades, including Academy Award™ nominations for Best Original Screenplay and Best Film Editing.

AMBI took ownership of “Memento” remake rights when the company acquired the Exclusive Media Group film library, which housed “Memento,” as well as 400 additional critical hits, commercial blockbusters and cult favorites such as “Begin Again,” “Cruel Intentions,” “Donnie Darko,” “End of Watch,” “Ides of March,” “Hit & Run,” “The Mexican,” “Parkland,” “Rush,” “Sliding Doors,” “Snitch,” “Undefeated” and “The Way Back,” to name a few.

The EMG library acquisition was followed by the launch of AMBI’s new $200 million film fund last week. Monika Bacardi and Andrea Iervolino are anchor investors in the fund along with New York based private equity firm Raven Capital Management LLC (“Raven”).

This series of strategic moves led to AMBI greenlighting “Memento” as its newest feature production. 

Said Iervolino, “’Memento’ has been consistently ranked as one of the best films of its decade. People who’ve seen ‘Memento’ 10 times still feel they need to see it one more time. This is a quality we feel really supports and justifies a remake. The bar is set high thanks to the brilliance or Christopher Nolan, but we wouldn’t want it any other way.” 

Iervolino added, “Our acquisition of the EMG library reinforced our commitment to build a strong global studio with a strong pipeline of commercial films that can play to a worldwide audience. Bringing a new ‘Memento’ to audiences is an initial example of how we intend to execute this strategy.”

Monika Bacardi added, “’Memento’ is a masterpiece that leaves audiences guessing not just throughout the film, but long after as well, which is a testament to its daring approach. We intend to stay true to Christopher Nolan’s vision and deliver a memorable movie that is every bit as edgy, iconic and award-worthy as the original. It’s a big responsibility to deliver something that lives up to the mastery of the original, but we are extremely excited and motivated to bring this puzzle back to life and back into the minds of moviegoers.”

Nolan’s original “Memento” follows Leonard (played by Guy Pearce) who is tracking down the man who raped and murdered his wife. The difficulty, however, of locating his wife's killer is compounded by the fact that he suffers from a rare, untreatable form of memory loss. Although he can recall details of life before his accident, Leonard cannot remember what happened fifteen minutes ago, where he's going, or why…

The movie was presented as two different sequences of scenes interspersed during the film: a series in black-and-white that is shown chronologically, and a series of color sequences shown in reverse order (simulating in the audience the mental state of the protagonist, who suffers from a anterograde amnesia).The two sequences "meet" at the end of the film, producing one complete and cohesive narrative.

AMBI Pictures parent company, AMBI Group (“AMBI”), is consortium of vertically integrated film development, production, finance and distribution companies owned and operated by Iervolino and Bacardi.

With 10 films in production this year alone and over 15 produced since last year, AMBI has quickly emerged as one of the industry’s most prolific financing, production and sales companies with the capacity to develop, package, finance, produce and sell a broad array of films for worldwide distribution.

Among the films currently on AMBI’s film slate are James Franco’s In Dubious Battle, featuring an ensemble cast that includes Franco, Nat Wolff, Selena Gomez, Vincent D’Onofrio, Robert Duvall, Ed Harris, Bryan Cranston, Josh Hutcherson, Zach Braff and Sam Shepherd; the 3D CGI family animated film Arctic Justice: Thunder Squad, featuring the  voices of John Cleese, Alec Baldwin, James Franco, Angelica Huston and Heidi Klum; Septembers of Shiraz, starring  Salma Hayek and Adrien Brody; the contemporary fairy tale This Beautiful Fantastic starring Jessica Brown Findlay and Tom Wilkinson; the animated feature Groove Tails, starring Jamie Foxx and directed by Cameron Hood; a homage to Federico Fellini’s classic film La Dolce Vita; the sci-fi thriller Rupture starring Noomi Rapace, Michael Chiklis and Peter Stormare; the psychological thriller Lavender starring Abbie Cornish and Dermot Mulroney; the romantic comedy All Roads Lead to Rome, starring Sarah Jessica Parker;  Barry Levinson’s acclaimed drama The Humbling, starring Al Pacino; and the sci-fi action thriller Andron: The Black Labyrinth, starring Alec Baldwin and Danny Glover, among several others.

About AMBI

AMBI Group is a consortium of vertically integrated film development, production, finance and distribution companies wholly owned and operated by Andrea Iervolino and Monika Gomez del Campo Bacardi, Lady of Bayfield Hall, better known as “Monika Bacardi.”

From offices in Toronto, Beverly Hills and Europe, AMBI is dedicated to making and delivering high-end, commercial movies for global audiences and serves as a top-tier supplier of mainstream projects for both the studios and major independent distributors worldwide.

Andrea Iervolino has produced, funded and distributed over 50 feature films including The Merchant of Venice, The Humbling and All Roads Lead to Rome, to name just a few. Iervolino was the recipient of the coveted Mimmo Rotella Award for his contributions to the Italian cinema industry. The award was presented to him at the 2014 Venice Film Festival, alongside fellow recipients Al Pacino and Barry Levinson. Iervolino most recently received the Honor of Recognition as Ambassador of Italian Cinema in the World at annual Italian Contemporary Film Festival (ICFF).

Lady Monika Bacardi is the widow of Luis Adalberto Facundo Gomez del Campo Bacardi, Lord of Bayfield Hall, known as Lord Luis Bacardi (descendent of the Bacardi founder, still a family-run company). Renowned for her passion of modern art and love of photography and movies, Monika Bacardi is a highly successful businesswoman who is now committed to producing films, through AMBI, on top of her numerous philanthropic activities. 

AMBI Group is active in the distribution of various movie projects in Italy and throughout the world through its satellite company AI Entertainment, a company Iervolino founded in 2011. Iervolino still runs this operation as well as several movie production and distribution companies in Italy, Spain and Canada.

For more information on AMBI please visit

November 09, 2015

Making Waves: New Romanian Cinema, December 2-7

The Film Society of Lincoln Center and the Romanian Film Initiative
announce the lineup for the 10th edition of Making Waves: New Romanian Cinema, December 2-7

Highlights include Romania’s entry in the foreign-language Oscar® race, Aferim!, by Radu Jude; Corneliu Porumboiu’s The Treasure; Tudor Giurgiu’s political thriller Why Me?; a spotlight on director Mircea Daneliuc; and many in-person appearances

New York, NY (November 9, 2015) – The Film Society of Lincoln Center and the Romanian Film Initiative are pleased to announce the 10th Edition of Making Waves: New Romanian Cinema (December 2-7), which has been hailed by The New York Times as one of the “annual treasures” of the Film Society’s programming. This year’s festival offers a selection of the best in contemporary Romanian filmmaking, including features, documentaries, and shorts, along with classic and landmark films, panels, and other special programs focusing on the work of Romanian filmmakers. For the third consecutive year, select films will also screen at the Jacob Burns Film Center, from December 3-8.

“We're pleased to welcome back Making Waves for its 10th anniversary edition,” said Dennis Lim, FSLC Director of Programming. “It has been yet another banner year for Romanian cinema, and we're looking forward to presenting this rich and varied selection of new work alongside some old favorites.” 

The festival’s artistic director Mihai Chirilov stated: “Revisiting classic titles such as The Death of Mr. Lăzărescu andCalifornia Dreamin’ (Endless) and honoring Mircea Daneliuc, an influential master of the Romanian cinema, make for an extremely exciting 10-year anniversary—of both the festival and the Romanian New Wave breakthrough in the U.S. And this year there are enough great new titles not only to enhance such a rounded celebration but also to reinforce a cinematic trend that hasn’t lost any of its power to surprise and impress.” 

Titles fresh from Cannes and Berlin lead the slate of new features, including Corneliu Porumboiu’s The Treasure;Radu Jude’s Aferim!; Radu Muntean’s subtle morality play, One Floor Below; and Why Me?, the Sidney Lumet–esque political thriller by Tudor Giurgiu, based on real events.

This year’s festival will feature a special tribute screening of Cristi Puiu’s The Death of Mr. Lăzărescu (2005), commemorating the 10th Anniversary of Making Waves. A seminal title of the Romanian New Wave, this dark comedy was presented at the first edition of the festival in 2006 and took American critics by storm, helping to establish Romania as a major player in the international landscape of contemporary art cinema. 

Making Waves will also present a tribute to one of Romania’s greatest filmmakers, Mircea Daneliuc, whose work inspired the Romanian New Wave and who will join the festival as this year’s special guest. With a career spanning four decades, 17 features (writing 16 of them) and 11 movie roles, plus several plays, novels, and short stories, Daneliuc has amassed an oeuvre of subversive films anchored in reality but showcasing a mordant dark humor and unrelenting satire. Daneliuc’s uncompromising Intimate Bed will ignite Making Waves’ 10th edition as the Opening Night film.

Completing this exciting lineup are Alexander Nanau’s raw survival documentary Toto and His Sisters and a selection of short films, including the newest from Cristi Puiu and Ramona, the Cannes prize-winning noir.

The 2015 Edition of Making Waves will also feature panels, special guests, and a continuation of the Creative Freedom Through Cinema program, which examines the relationship between art and politics in Eastern Europe, and will spotlight films from Georgia and the Republic of Moldova. Georgia is experiencing a cinematic renaissance thanks to recent festival hits such as Blind Dates and In Bloom, while Moldova is a place rarely seen on screen—although it gave us Oleg Mutu, one of the most acclaimed cinematographers in the world, who has collaborated with esteemed directors like Cristian Mungiu and Sergey Loznitsa. Both countries are represented in this year’s program with films about survival in the harshest conditions: George Ovashvili's top prize winner in Karlovy VaryCorn Island and Igor Cobileanski's The Unsaved, which features Mutu's impressive camerawork.

Guests of this year’s festival include directors Mircea Daneliuc, Tudor Giurgiu, Dan Chișu, Oana Giurgiu,Andrei Crețulescu, Luiza Pârvu, and Andreea Vălean; actors Cecilia Bârbora, Andi Vasluianu, Emilian Oprea, and Mihai Constantin; and producers Ada Solomon, Codruța Crețulescu, and Toma Peiu.

The complete 2015 Making Waves lineup is as follows:

New Releases (Fiction, Documentary and Shorts)
•    Aferim!, d. Radu Jude
•    The Treasure, d. Corneliu Porumboiu
•    Why Me?, d. Tudor Giurgiu
•    One Floor Below, d. Radu Muntean
•    București Nonstop, d. Dan Chișu
•    The World Is Mine, d. Nicolae Constantin Tănase
•    Toto and His Sisters, d. Alexander Nanau
•    Aliyah DaDa, d. Oana Giurgiu
•    Trading Germans, d. Răzvan Georgescu
•    New Romanian Shorts

o    Black Friday, d. Roxana Stroe
o    Omulan!, d. Matei Branea
o    Start Anew World (O lume nouă), d. Luiza Pârvu
o    There’s Nothing in This World (Nu există-n lumea asta), d. Andreea Vălean
o    Das Spektrum Europas, d. Cristi Puiu
o    Tie (Scor alb), d. Marius Olteanu
o    The Message (Mesagerul), d. Radu Potcoavă
o    Ramona, d. Andrei Crețulescu

Celebrating 10 Years of Making Waves: A Festival Retrospective
•    The Death of Mr. Lăzărescu (Moartea domnului Lăzărescu), d. Cristi Puiu
•    California Dreamin (Endless) (California Dreamin’ (nesfîrșit)), d. Cristian Nemescu
Director in Focus: Mircea Daneliuc
•    The Cruise (Croaziera)
•    Intimate Bed (Patul conjugal)
•    The Snails’ Senator (Senatorul melcilor)
This focus, presented at the Film Society of Lincoln Center, will be complemented by two titles screening at the Jacob Burns Film Center: Microphone Test (Probă de microfon), and Jacob (Iacob).

Creative Freedom Through Cinema. Guest Countries: Georgia and the Republic of Moldova
•    Corn Island (Simindis Kundzuli), d. George Ovashvili, Georgia
•    The Unsaved (La limita de jos a cerului), d. Igor Cobileanschi, Romania/Republic of Moldova


All films in Romanian and with English subtitles, unless otherwise noted.

Intimate Bed / Patul conjugal
Mircea Daneliuc, Romania, 1993, 101m
Vasile Potop is a movie theater manager in post-1989 Romania. The economy is down, audiences have abandoned moviegoing for television news, and Vasile’s home life is brimming with tedium and disgust. He feels happy only when locked in his office with Stela, the cinema cashier—but even that doesn’t last long. All around him, people are trying to make a quick buck by devising grotesque business schemes—including his wife, who plans to sell their soon-to-be-born baby. And we’re not even halfway through this anarchic gig. Intimate Bed is artistic indignation at its best, satire that cuts to the bone and beyond. Daneliuc’s delirious, cynical film is the most accurate portrayal of the messy transitions in Romanian society of the 1990s.
Wednesday, December 2, 7:00PM, WRT (Introduction by and Q&A with director Mircea Daneliuc)

Radu Jude, Romania/Bulgaria/Czech Republic, 2015, 105m
Berlin 2015 (Best Director)
The third and most ambitious feature to date by Radu Jude (Everybody in Our Family) is a captivating road movie that employs the conventions of the Western to tell an Eastern tale of gypsy slavery. Based on a little-talked-about moment in Romania’s past, this story of a policeman and his son searching for a fugitive in 19th-century southern Romania unfolds with remarkable fluidity, employing gorgeous and crisp black-and-white photography, uniquely archaic-sounding language, a perfect sense of location, and great attention to historical detail. Variety called this period film, which represents Romania in this year’s Best Foreign Language Film Oscar race, “an exceptional, deeply intelligent gaze into a key historical period, done with wit as well as anger.” A Big World Pictures Release.
Monday, December 7, 8:30PM, WRT (Introduction by and Q&A with producer Ada Solomon)
Tuesday, December 8, 7:40PM, JBFC (Introduction by and Q&A with producer Ada Solomon)

The Treasure / Comoara
Corneliu Porumboiu, Romania/France, 2015, 89m
Cannes 2015 (Un Certain Regard)
An average family man who likes to read adventure stories to his son at bedtime seizes the opportunity to overcome his gray existence when a neighbor approaches him with a surreal offer: if he can provide a metal detector to help find the treasure buried in his grandparents’ garden, he’ll get half of whatever they uncover. In this stylized, uplifting, and deadpan fairy tale, the action gets crazier as the digging progresses. Audiences will be surprised by the emotional climax of this Cannes prizewinner, which cements Corneliu Porumboiu’s reputation as one of the most original directors working in Romania today. A Sundance Selects Release.
Saturday, December 5, 9:30PM, WRT
Saturday, December 5, 8:15PM, JBFC

New York Premiere
One Floor Below / Un etaj mai jos 
Radu Muntean, Romania/France/Germany/Sweden, 2015, 93m
Cannes 2015 (Un Certain Regard)
Radu Muntean’s long-awaited follow-up to his 2010 critical hit Tuesday, After Christmas, is a simmering anti-thriller about a family man, Sandu (Teodor Corban), who overhears the conclusion of a heated argument between his downstairs neighbor Laura (Maria Popistașu) and her boyfriend Vali (Iulian Postelnicu). When Laura is found dead in her apartment the next day, it appears that Sandu may have witnessed the prelude to a too-close-to-home murder. He soon finds his ability to keep his head down tested by the need to protect his family as the menacing Vali begins inserting himself in their lives. Muntean gracefully and economically weds 19th-century Russian literature’s preoccupation with hard questions of morality and the Romanian New Wave’s exceptional attentiveness to the rhythms and political resonances of daily life.
Thursday, December 3, 9:00PM, WRT
Friday, December 4, 4:30PM, FSLC

New York Premiere
Why Me? / De ce eu?
Tudor Giurgiu, Romania/Bulgaria/Hungary, 2015, 130m
An ambitious young prosecutor (played with dark intensity by newcomer Emilian Oprea) is surprised to be assigned a sensitive case involving an older colleague accused of corruption. But what could have been a springboard for his career turns out to be quite the opposite, as it’s revealed that he may be a mere pawn on a cynical chessboard. Based on tragic true events, this Sidney Lumet–esque political thriller about one man’s fight against the system finds director Tudor Giurgiu in a more serious mode after his crowd-pleasing Of Snails and Men (the opening-night film of Making Waves 2012), taking risks in exposing the dirty and sometimes tragic games of Romanian politics. 
Saturday, December 5, 6:30PM, WRT (Introduction by and Q&A with director Tudor Giurgiu, producer Oana Giurgiu and actors Emilian Oprea and Mihai Constantin)
Sunday, December 6, 5:00PM, JBFC (Introduction by and Q&A with director Tudor Giurgiu and actor Mihai Constantin)
Monday, December 7, 4:00PM, WRT

North American Premiere
Bucharest Nonstop / București Nonstop
Dan Chişu, Romania, 2015, 86m
Four stories of ordinary yet colorful people caught in extraordinary situations are cleverly interwoven in this funny, bittersweet portrayal of urban life set during a single night in Romania’s chaotic capital city. No matter how different they seem, the taxi driver and the hooker, the grumpy elderly couple, the quarreling young lovers, and the loquacious pair of petty criminals all have one thing in common: the eponymous 24-hour store and its sarcastic yet good-hearted owner who connects the dots by being the sole witness of their trials and tribulations. This is the fifth and most accomplished feature film to date by maverick Dan Chişu, who gets the best from his eclectic ensemble cast. This year’s Making Waves lineup also includes Chişu’s own acting debut, in Mircea Daneliuc’s The Snails’ Senator.
Friday, December 4, 6:45PM, WRT (Introduction by and Q&A with director Dan Chişu)

North American Premiere
The World Is Mine / Lumea e a mea
Nicolae Constantin Tănase, Romania 2015, 103m
In this Romanian version of Mean Girls—only meaner, and probably made with just the catering budget of the 2004 American film—16-year-old Larisa struggles to stay afloat after falling for the wrong guy. The small-town world in which good looks and money give power over the less fortunate doesn’t favor the rebellious and stubborn teenager. Increasingly at odds with her school, her friends, and her parents, Larisa lashes out with devastating consequences. With assured skill and disarming authenticity, first-time feature director Nicolae Constantin Tănase offers a powerful look into the inner lives of teen girls, with a tornado-like Ana-Maria Guran leading a cast made up of mostly non-professional actors discovered primarily via Facebook.
Thursday, December 3, 3:45PM, WRT

Toto and His Sisters / Toto și surorile lui
Alexander Nanau, Romania, 2014, 94m
Ten-year-old Totonel (or Toto) and his two teenage sisters struggle to live on their own and hope that the family will be reunited when their mother is released from prison. Shot over several years, with astonishing access to its subjects, this impressive HBO-produced documentary is reminiscent of early Ken Loach. Though disturbing, with brutal scenes involving drug addicts and a quietly shocking ending, this tough social commentary from Emmy Award winner Alexander Nanau (The World According to Ion B.) is a refreshingly optimistic film, with Toto managing to find his way and stay pure amid a cruel environment.
Sunday, December 6, 5:30PM, WRT
Monday, December 7, 7:45PM, JBFC

New York Premiere
Aliyah DaDa
Oana Giurgiu, Romania, 2014, 116m 
In her debut documentary, Oana Giurgiu, a non-Jewish Romanian raised under the supreme Communist truth, sets out on a journey to uncover the reality behind the Romanian Jews aliyah (the return to the Holy Land). This incredibly rich story also touches on the adventure of the first settlers who abandoned their modern lives in Eastern Europe at end of the 19th century for a stark existence in a hostile Palestine. Unfolding something like a fairy tale,Aliyah DaDa is not without its dark revelations, including the infamous trade of Romanian Jews to Israel during Ceaușescu’s regime, and its captivating visual style—interviews and archival footage interlinked with Dadaist installations and brisk photo collages—pays tribute to two pioneers of that movement, the Romanian Jews Tristan Tzara and Marcel Janco.
Thursday, December 3, 6:00PM, WRT (Introduction by and Q&A with director Oana Giurgiu)

North American Premiere
Trading Germans / Pașaport de Germania
Răzvan Georgescu, Romania/Germany, 2014, 92m
This HBO-produced documentary is a perfect companion piece to Oana Giurgiu’s Aliyah DaDa in that it similarly unearths, though in more traditional fashion, another of Ceaușescu’s schemes to shamelessly profit from the plight of his own people. Răzvan Georgescu’s film is the untold account of one of the largest and most scandalous human-trade mysteries in postwar Europe: how could 246,000 ethnic Germans from Romania have been secretly sold to Germany during the Cold War without anyone else noticing? It’s a mind-blowing story that chronicles the evolution of the deal as well as its complex consequences. Meticulously researched and crafted, Trading Germansis a highly emotional experience, especially when its uprooted heroes discuss identity and what “homeland” means to them. 
Monday, December 7, 6:30PM, WRT (Introduction by producer Ada Solomon)


The Death of Mr. Lăzărescu / Moartea domnului Lăzărescu
Cristi Puiu, Romania, 2005, 154 min
Cannes 2005 (Un Certain Regard Award)
The lonely 63-year-old Mr. Lăzărescu (the late Ion Fiscuteanu, in his final and most memorable performance) feels sick and calls an ambulance. The paramedics take him to the hospital, but once there they decide to move him to another hospital, and then yet another...while his health continues to deteriorate. Ten years ago, this dark comedy about the human condition took American critics by storm, ending up  on numerous top 10 lists. And the talented and gorgeous Luminița Gheorghiu, who plays the Good Samaritan nurse was named Best Supporting Actress by the Los Angeles Film Critics Association: just a few reasons to revisit Cristi Puiu’s seminal—and arguably the greatest—title of the Romanian New Wave, which has recently been digitally remastered.
Friday, December 4, 7:15PM, JBFC
Sunday, December 6, 8:00PM, WRT

California Dreamin' (Endless) / California Dreamin’ (nesfîrșit)
Cristian Nemescu, Romania, 2007, 155m
Cannes 2007 (Un Certain Regard Award)
A NATO gun shipment supervised by an American officer that’s scheduled to cross Romania via train during the Kosovo war of the late 1990s, is blocked by a stubborn rural station official who objects to the lack of accompanying documents. What follows is an epic farce of carnivalesque proportions, touching on cultural misunderstanding, corruption, vengeance, and the American dream. “Its themes are serious, but they are addressed with a playful exuberance,” wrote A.O. Scott in The New York Times back in 2007. Today, revisiting Nemescu’s posthumous debut feature (now on digitally remastered DCP) one thing’s for sure: the film’s seduction and electrifying rock ’n’ roll vitality—far removed from the stripped-down realism of most of New Romanian Cinema’s big hits—remain unaltered.
Saturday, December 5, 1:00PM, WRT (Introduction by actor Andi Vasluianu)

DIRECTOR IN FOCUS: Mircea Daneliuc 

The Cruise / Croaziera
Mircea Daneliuc, Romania, 1981, 118m
Young winners of various contests from across the country are awarded with a cruise on the Danube. This becomes an opportunity to expose the dynamics of ideology, as the youngsters are constantly subjected to educational pressures, which they in turn eschew through irony and cunning. Originally meant as a reward, the cruise ends up being a punishment, a sadly unacknowledged act of coercion. Surprisingly, given the harsh censorship at the time, The Cruise has the strongest and clearest anti-totalitarian message of all the Romanian productions made under Communism, featuring a Party activist who is an aggressive impostor, presented unmistakably as a villain. Subversive, hilarious, and a highly incisive X-ray of an entire generation, Cristi Puiu’s favorite film of Daneliuc’s is the most Altman-esque film ever made in Romania.
Friday, December 4, 9:15PM, WRT (Introduction by director Mircea Daneliuc)

Microphone Test / Probă de microfon
Mircea Daneliuc, Romania, 1980, 106m
A reporting team is interviewing petty criminals—sometimes harshly—in the Bucharest railway station, with an eye to make examples of them. When the cameraman, the reporter’s boyfriend, takes a special interest in one of the subjects, the professional and personal collide. This irreverent social satire, made under communist rule by veteran filmmaker Mircea Daneliuc, effortlessly stands the test of time. Richard Peña, former program director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, wrote in admiration of this rare masterpiece: “Microphone Test is about… the moment when a crack appears in the social façade that reveals another kind of reality hidden just out of sight.”
Thursday, December 3, 7:30PM, JBFC (Introduction by and Q&A with director Mircea Daneliuc)

Jacob / Iacob
Mircea Daneliuc, Romania, 1988, 115m
Jacob, a Transylvanian miner trying to eke out a living, is wrongly accused of stealing gold from the mine where he works. As punishment, he is transferred to a more distant site. At Christmas, in an attempt to make it home more quickly, Jacob secretly climbs into the mine’s cable car. But when the power shuts down for the holidays, he finds himself stuck, suspended 200 meters above the abyss. It’s in this extremely confined space that Jacob learns what it means to take risks and to fight to the last breath—and you will be breathless, too, watching this undisputedly brilliant film by a Romanian master, a major influence on New Romanian Cinema. A former NYFF selection.
Saturday, December 5, 5:00PM, JBFC

The Snails’ Senator / Senatorul melcilor
Mircea Daneliuc, Romania, 1995, 112m
Senator Vîrtosu (Dorel Vișan) spends the weekend at a guesthouse formerly owned by the Communist Party, where in true Communist tradition, he’s presented with gifts from its employees and petitions from the local peasants. But his relaxing weekend is disrupted by a crew of Swiss journalists filming in the area. Vîrtosu cooperates with them, trying to make sure the reporters present his country favorably, while of course hiding certain details from them. This Cannes competition entry reframes The Cruise against the backdrop of a society in transition and adds apocalyptic and Dostoevskian accents to the depravity and penance of the main villain—the Communist Party activist turned member of a democratic parliament. Daneliuc’s film is a fierce political satire that thankfully doesn’t concern itself with delivering a positive image of Romania.
Saturday, December 5, 4:00PM, WRT (Introduction by and Q&A with director Mircea Daneliuc and actress Cecilia Bârbora)

Guest Countries: Georgia and the Republic of Moldova

Panel Discussion: Sunday, December 6, 5:30PM, FSLC - AMP

New York Premiere
Corn Island / Simindis Kundzuli
George Ovashvili, Georgia/Germany/France, 2014, 101m
Karlovy Vary 2014 (Crystal Globe for Best Film)
An old peasant and his innocent granddaughter sow corn on an island in the middle of the Inguri River dividing Georgia from Abkhazia. Made out of washed-up dirt, rocks, and debris, the island might exist for year—or it might soon be swept away. The farmers can’t help but take the risk to escape poverty. But then there’s the other risk, of being caught in the ongoing border conflict between the two territories. Told through captivating imagery and almost devoid of dialogue, the second feature from renowned Georgian filmmaker George Ovashvili is a majestic drama about the fragile bond between man and nature. It won the top prize in Karlovy Vary last year and was the Georgian Oscar entry for the Best Foreign Language Film, remarkably making the January shortlist.
In Abkhaz, Georgian, and Russian with English subtitles.
Sunday, December 6, 3:15PM, WRT

New York Premiere
The Unsaved / La limita de jos a cerului
Igor Cobileanski, Romania/Republic of Moldova, 2013, 80m 
Karlovy Vary 2013, Cottbus (FIPRESCI Award)
Nineteen-year-old Viorel lives with his mother in a remote Moldovan town. Aside from earning a little cash through illegal activities and building a hang glider with his pal Goos, he has no great ambitions. But, eventually, Viorel begins taking control of his life. In Igor Cobileanski’s authentic, socially conscious feature debut, which captures the dead ends of a youth generation growing up in a place lacking prospects for a better life. Working from a script first drafted by Corneliu Porumboiu (hence the film’s recognizable mood and humor), Cobileanski joined forces with a more famous Moldovan to shape the look of his bleak story: the brilliant director of photography Oleg Mutu, who has worked with Cristian Mungiu and Sergei Loznitsa.
Sunday, December 6, 1:30PM, WRT 


A selection of the New York, Telluride, and Chicago film festivals, Andrei Crețulescu’s Cannes prizewinner Ramona—a perfectly crafted act of poetic justice at its darkest—is a highlight of this collection of eight internationally recognized short films. Additional dark works include Luiza Pârvu’s Start Anew World, a quiet story of sacrifice from a forgotten generation of Romanian immigrants in the U.S.; Roxana Stroe’s Black Friday, a deadpan tale of an occasional sniper in communist Romania; Marius Olteanu’s Tie, about a strange nighttime encounter between a cab driver and his female client; and Radu Potcoavă’s The Messenger, an absurd face-off between a gangster and a teen. On the lighter side, there’s Andreea Vălean’s hilarious Balkan music-infused There’s Nothing in this Worldand Matei Branea’s kinky sci-fi animation Omulan!. And, last but certainly not least, Cristi Puiu’s Christmas tale Das Spektrum Europas, a subversive history lesson taught by an old couple in bed. 
Saturday, December 5, 1:30PM–6:30PM, FSLC – AMP (Introduction by directors Andrei Crețulescu, Luiza Pârvu, Andreea Vălean, and producers Codruța Crețulescu and Toma Peiu) FREE ADMISSION
Sunday, December 6, 2:00PM, JBFC
Sunday, December 6, 7:00PM, FSLC – AMP, FREE ADMISSION

Black Friday
Roxana Stroe, Romania, 2015, 21m
In the Communist era, standing in line for food is a normal occurrence. After a long wait on an empty stomach, Mihail doesn’t receive his food ration. The next day he attempts to be the first in line...

Matei Branea, Romania, 2015, 15m
Omulan travels through space in search of God and lands on a mysterious planet marked by the divine triangle. He explores it, discovering triangle-shaped critters everywhere but not THE ONE he’s looking for. Until he does…

Start Anew World / O lume nouă
Luiza Pârvu, Romania/Hungary/USA, 2014, 23 min
Pennsylvania, 1908. Romanian immigrant cobbler Petru greets his cousin’s wife Ana in their New World home with silent affection. Before he wins her heart, however, he must relate a piece of news that will change her forever.

Das Spektrum Europas 
Cristi Puiu, Romania, 2013, 13m
A Christmastime conversation in bed between a husband and wife as she reads aloud from Hermann Keyserling’s 1928 book Das Spektrum Europas, in which the German philosopher reduced most of southeastern Europe to unflattering national stereotypes.

There’s Nothing in This World / Nu există-n lumea asta 
Andreea Vălean, Romania, 2015, 10m
Two old friends reconnect after a long time. One is a sketchy bar manager, the other an art designer with a huge poker debt. Is their childhood bond strong enough for carrying out a promise made to a dead father?

Tie / Scor alb
Marius Olteanu, Romania, 2015, 28m
As a soccer match paralyzes Bucharest, an anxious businesswoman takes a cab, but once in front of her building, she asks the driver to keep her company until the next morning. At any price.

The Message / Mesagerul
Radu Potcoavă, Romania, 2015, 13m
On his way home, a teenager witnesses a triple murder in broad daylight. Scared to death, he tries to run away, but is caught by the killer. He has only one chance to make it out alive…

Andrei Crețulescu, Romania, 2015, 21m
One night. One girl. One car. No coincidence. 

Founded in 1969 to celebrate American and international cinema, the Film Society of Lincoln Center works to recognize established and emerging filmmakers, support important new work, and to enhance the awareness, accessibility, and understanding of the moving image. The Film Society produces the renowned New York Film Festival, a curated selection of the year’s most significant new film work, and presents or collaborates on other annual New York City festivals including Dance on Camera, Film Comment Selects, Human Rights Watch Film Festival, New Directors/New Films, NewFest, New York African Film Festival, New York Asian Film Festival, New York Jewish Film Festival, Open Roads: New Italian Cinema and Rendez-Vous with French Cinema. In addition to publishing the award-winning Film Comment magazine, the Film Society recognizes an artist's unique achievement in film with the prestigious Chaplin Award, whose 2015 recipient is Robert Redford. The Film Society’s state-of-the-art Walter Reade Theater and the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, located at Lincoln Center, provide a home for year-round programs and the New York City film community.

The Film Society receives generous, year-round support from American Airlines, The New York Times, HBO, Stella Artois, The Kobal Collection, Variety, Loews Regency Hotel, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New York State Council on the Arts. For more information, visit and follow @filmlinc on Twitter.
The Romanian Film Initiative (RFI) came together in 2012 to safeguard the existence and the spirit of the Romanian film festival in New York, redesigned as Making Waves: New Romanian Cinema, and co-presented with the Film Society of Lincoln Center. Created by Corina Șuteu, Mihai Chirilov, and Oana Radu, the core team that initiated and organized the festival since 2006, RFI is a flagship of Film ETC. Association in Bucharest. Along with the continuation and expansion of Making Waves, RFI aims to develop and contribute to other project aiming at the promotion of Romanian cinema in the U.S., and the professionalization of the cultural sector in Romania and internationally.

November 06, 2015



New York, NY (November 6, 2015) – The Film Society of Lincoln Center announced today the next of the popular FREE Film Society Talks with director Ron Howard at 5:00pm on Sunday, November 22 timed to his new film In the Heart of the Sea. Talks are sponsored by HBO and include a combination of clips, trailers, and extended conversations with questions from the audience. Additional fall talks to be announced.  

Ron Howard began his career as an actor, playing beloved television roles such as Opie on The Andy Griffith Show and Richie Cunningham on Happy Days before transitioning into film with American Graffiti (1973). He made his feature directorial debut with Grand Theft Auto in 1977 and amassed a body of work that includes Splash (1984), Cocoon (1985),Parenthood (1989), Apollo 13 (1995), The Da Vinci Code (2006), Frost/Nixon (2008), and A Beautiful Mind (2001), which earned him the Oscar for Best Director. 

On November 22, the director will sit down and discuss his career in front of and behind the camera, as well as the making of this new film, In the Heart of the Sea. The film is set during the winter of 1820 when a New England whaling ship was assaulted by a whale of mammoth size and will, stranding its crew at sea for 90 days. In the Heart of the Sea reveals the encounter’s harrowing aftermath as the ship’s surviving crew is pushed to their limits to stay alive. This real-life disaster inspired Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick, and the film stars Chris Hemsworth, Benjamin Walker, Cillian Murphy, Tom Holland, Ben Whishaw, and Brendan Gleeson, and opens in theaters December 11. A presentation of Warner Bros. Pictures, in association with Village Roadshow Pictures, a Warner Bros. Pictures release.

Free tickets will be distributed at the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center box office (144 West 65th Street, between Broadway and Amsterdam) on a first-come, first-served basis starting one hour prior to the talks. Limit one ticket per person, subject to availability. For those unable to attend, the talk will be featured on our podcast and YouTube channel at a later date.

Founded in 1969 to celebrate American and international cinema, the Film Society of Lincoln Center works to recognize established and emerging filmmakers, support important new work, and to enhance the awareness, accessibility, and understanding of the moving image. The Film Society produces the renowned New York Film Festival, a curated selection of the year’s most significant new film work, and presents or collaborates on other annual New York City festivals including Dance on Camera, Film Comment Selects, Human Rights Watch Film Festival, New Directors/New Films, New York African Film Festival, New York Asian Film Festival, New York Jewish Film Festival, Open Roads: New Italian Cinema and Rendez-Vous with French Cinema. In addition to publishing the award-winning Film Comment magazine, the Film Society recognizes an artist's unique achievement in film with the prestigious Chaplin Award, whose 2015 recipient was Robert Redford. The Film Society’s state-of-the-art Walter Reade Theater and the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, located at Lincoln Center, provide a home for year-round programs and the New York City film community.

The Film Society receives generous, year-round support from American Airlines, The New York Times, HBO, Stella Artois, The Kobal Collection, Variety, Loews Regency Hotel, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New York State Council on the Arts. For more information, visit and follow @filmlinc on Twitter.

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