Global Lens film festival returns to campus in NovemberPosted Oct. 16, 2012
The Kent State University at Trumbull Office of Student Activities is proud to announce that it will present select films from The Global Film Initiative’s “Global Lens 2012” film series during the months of November and December.
The film series – a set of 10 award-winning narrative feature films from Albania, Argentina, Brazil, Columbia, Iran, Iraq, Morocco, Rwanda and Turkey – will screen selected features on the campus of Kent State Trumbull, with the entire series being shown at The Lemon Grove Café in Youngstown.
All screenings are free and open to the public at both locations.
“The lineup this year is really going to surprise audiences,” says Susan Weeks Coulter, Board Chair of the Global Film Initiative. “The cinematics are strong, the tone is fresh and the stories are thought provoking and unlike anything we’ve seen before.”
Global Lens 2012 is led by festival heavyweights that include Iranian newcomer Morteza Farshbaf’s darkly comic road trip, Mourning (FIPRESCI Prize and New Currents Award, 2011 Pusan IFF), Paula Markovitch’s picturesque and beautifully acted Argentine political drama, The Prize (Silver Bear, 2011 Berlin IFF and Best Film, 2011 Morelia IFF), and Pegasus(Golden Stallion, 2011 FESPACO and Best Cinematographer, 2010 Dubai IFF)—Mohamed Mouftakir’s atmospheric psychological thriller about tribes and tradition in present-day Morocco.
The series also features four critically acclaimed films by first-time directors, including Gustavo Pizzi’s colorful rendering of artistic angst and ego in Rio de Janeiro, Craft(Best Actress, 2010 Rio de Janeiro IFF), Carlos Osuna’s charming Colombian rotoscope, Fat, Bald, Short Man(Official Selection, 2011 Chicago IFF), Tolga Karaçelik’s acclaimed Turkish “everyman” story, Toll Booth (Best First Film and Best Actor, 2010 International Antalya Golden Orange Film FF), and Grey Matter(Best Actor and Special Jury Mention, 2011 Tribeca FF), the first feature-length narrative film from Rwanda to be directed by a native Rwandan (Kivu Ruhorahoza).
The 2012 lineup is rounded out by Bujar Alimani’s sensitive chronicle of life and love in the Albanian prison system, Amnesty(Official Albania Submission, 84th Academy Awards; FIPRESCI Prize and Cineuropa Prize, 2011 Festival del Cinema Europeo), Oday Rasheed’s moody Baghdad portrait of an assassin and his relationship with a troubled family, Qarantina(Official Selection, 2010 Abu Dhabi FF), and Sergio Teubal’s offbeat yet true-to-life fable of small town politics and finger-pointing, The Finger(Best First Feature Film, 2011 Guadalajara IFF).
Global Lens, now in its ninth season, premiered at the Museum of Modern Art in January before embarking on its yearlong tour that includes full series screenings and festival presentations in more than fifty cities across the United States and Canada.
Director: Bujar Alimani
Albania | 2011 | 83 minutes
11/4, 7 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
11/7, 7 p.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
A new national law allowing conjugal visits for inmates brings together a man and woman visiting the same prison to meet their incarcerated spouses. Elsa’s dutiful contact with her husband is part of a routine consumed with job searching, raising her two sons, and getting along with her father-in-law. When she meets Spetim, a quiet man visiting his imprisoned wife in equally passionless encounters, they slowly find the sympathy and companionship missing from their lives. A prisoner amnesty, however, soon threatens their fragile bond in this closely observed, sensual and contemplative drama highlighting a period of subtle but profound social transformation.
Director: Gustavo Pizzi
Brazil | 2010 | 85 minutes
11/13, 11 a.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
11/11, 7 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
Bianca manages a precarious living as a talented but underemployed actress in Rio de Janeiro, performing for private events dressed as female movie icons. Troubled by the thought she has missed her chance at a “big break,” she perseveres with single-minded dedication to her craft—until an audition leads to a rare opportunity and possible redemption for years of social marginality. But her world may still prove too insecure, even for one as gifted and deserving as Bianca. Set against rich visuals and a down-to-earth tone, Karine Teles’s remarkable lead performance drives an enveloping drama of everyday tragedy in the working world of an artist.
Director: Kivu Ruhorahoza
Rwanda | 2011 | 100 minutes
11/14, 7 p.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
11/18, 7 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
Set in Kigali, Rwanda’s capital, this radiantly self-referential film-within-a-film describes the vision and trials of a determined filmmaker named Balthazar, as he tries to produce his first feature, The Cycle of the Cockroach. The trenchant drama, about a brother and sister dealing with the aftermath of genocide, finds no support from agencies only interested in funding upbeat policy-friendly films. As Balthazar borrows recklessly from a loan shark, the Cycle plays out on the screen, subtly measuring the horror and systematic madness of events hardly unique to Rwanda, while offering bracing insight into the nature of political violence.
Fat, Bald, Short Man
Director: Carlos Osuna
Colombia | 2011 | 91 minutes
11/15, 11 a.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
11/11, 7 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
Lonesome, middle-aged virgin Antonio Farfán is picked on and ridiculed as a matter of course, whether by coworkers or his bullying mooch of a brother (who only calls when he needs money). An employee of a notary’s office, his status improves a bit when his new boss—and strangely affable doppelganger—takes an interest in him. But Farfán’s deep-seated shyness and insecurity are only partly assuaged. And when he joins a self-improvement group, he slowly confirms what the undulating lines of this sly, involving rotoscope story suggest: everything is in motion, and change is inevitable. The question becomes what use one makes of it.
Director: Morteza Farshbaf
Iran | 2011 | 85 minutes
11/19, 7 p.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
12/9, 9 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
From a black screen, a man and a woman are heard arguing and hurrying away from a house. Afterward, the screen radiates brilliant green countryside, traversed by a small black car. Subtitles relay a conversation by another man and woman, but now we hear no voices. Kamran and Sharareh, a deaf couple, are driving Sharareh’s young nephew, Arshia, back home to Tehran. Something terrible has happened. But the couple keeps the news from Arshia, debating his future in a language not as private as they believe, and turning a car trip into a subtly humorous and deeply compassionate meditation on communication and emotional disability.
Director: Oday Rasheed
Iraq | 2010 | 90 minutes
11/26, 7 p.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
12/9, 7 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
A broken family under an incestuous patriarch lives uneasily within the gated courtyard of a dilapidated Baghdad house. The pregnant daughter has fallen silent, finding some protection from the patriarch’s young second wife and his preteen son. Meanwhile, hard up for money, the household must live with a sullen and imperious boarder, a contract killer. In such a house, though, it may be that freedom and safety actually lie beyond the gates. Iraqi filmmaker Oday Rasheed’s second feature gorgeously captures contemporary Baghdad’s moody interior and stunned atmosphere, echoed in performances by a formidable cast who suggest unexpected resilience in the wake of catastrophe.
Director: Mohamed Mouftakir
Morocco | 2010 | 104 minutes
11/28, 7 p.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
12/2, 7 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
Zineb is an emotionally exhausted psychiatrist assigned to Rihana, a traumatized and pregnant young woman found in the street muttering unintelligibly about “The Lord of the Horse.” A flashback sequence returns us to Rihana’s childhood, where her dictatorial father, horseman chief of his tribe, raises her as the son his legacy demands. Trapped in parental delusions, Rihana falls in love with a young man with whom she carves out the beginnings of her own life. Soon, Rihana’s story awakens repressed thoughts in Zineb’s own troubled mind, and reality merges into a haunted fever-dream of fear and denial in this visually striking, award-winning psychological thriller.
Director: Tolga Karaçelik
Turkey | 2010 | 96 minutes
12/5, 7 p.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
12/16, 7 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
A taciturn tollbooth attendant shuffles between a suffocating home life with his ailing father and the monotony of the box where he works. Desperate to resist his father’s attempt to marry him off while determined to prove his worth by fixing his family’s broken-down car; he drives himself toward a nervous breakdown. After a reassignment to a desolate country road, he begins a flirtatious relationship with a woman who drives by each day. But is this salvation for the aging bachelor, or the further unraveling of his mind? An expert cast and keen art direction contribute to this wry, heartbreaking ode to lost dreams in a sleepwalking world.
Director: Sergio Teubal
Argentina | 2011 | 93 minutes
11/13, 7 p.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
11/25, 7 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
After seven years of dictatorship, a remote village in Argentina formally becomes a town with the birth of its 501st inhabitant. Hidalgo, a slick and ingratiating scion, is eager for the new post of mayor. Smelling a rat, Baldomero (a beloved natural leader with a habitually tapping digit) opposes him with his own candidacy—and soon turns up dead. His shopkeeper brother vows revenge, keeping Baldomero’s severed finger in a jar, initially as a remembrance, but eventually as an absurd icon of leadership that spurs the town to defy crooked elections, interloping powers and Hidalgo to go its own way. Based on real events, this charming dramatic comedy pokes fun at small town ways while celebrating true democratic values.
Director: Paula Markovitch
Argentina | 2011 | 99 minutes
11/15, 7 p.m. @ Kent State Trumbull
11/25, 9 p.m. @ The Lemon Grove
Under the cloud of a military dictatorship, a young mother and her daughter flee Buenos Aires for the seclusion of a ramshackle cottage along the windy dunes of an Argentine beach. As her mother listens for news from the radio with sad stoicism, restlessly curious seven-year-old Cecilia joins a nearby school overseen by a kindly teacher. A childhood idyll, however, soon becomes contaminated by the general political crisis, as the teacher recruits the class for a patriotic essay contest sponsored by the army—the very people that may have already disappeared Cecilia’s father—in this superbly acted and engrossingly atmospheric drama about innocence in illicit times.