The 30th Annual Three Rivers Film Festival is running November 4 through 19 (just in time for my birthday!) This film fest is heavy on the foreign and artsy-drama films, with good reason since Pittsburgh Filmmakers theaters are heavy on the foreign and artsy-drama films. I’ve picked the 3RFF as the film festival I will attend for my 30 before 30 list…mostly because it’s in Pittsburgh, I’m in Pittsburgh, and it’s easy. I did look into the Toronto International Film Festival or the Philadelphia Film Festival, but it just wasn’t going to happen. Getting to the movies when you have a baby is hard enough, traveling to another city to watch several days worth of movies is impossible, unless you have lots of free time and lots and lots of money to burn, and a babysitter to bring along. Someday, though, I would LOVE to go to either one of those.
On my first browse through the film list, I wasn’t too thrilled. Once I started reading the descriptions, I got a lot more interested. I’ve picked out four films I’d really like to see. I still have to work out the logistics of either getting a babysitter or working out schedules so Mr. Beez will be home with Baby Beez.
Here are my picks (credit to the 3RFF site for the images and summaries):
This quirky comedy won seven awards at the 2011 SXSW Film Festival including: Audience and Grand Jury Awards for Best Narrative Feature, Best Screenplay, Best Score/Music, Best Editing, and Breakthrough Performances (Rachael Harris, Matt O’Leary). It’s the story of a dutiful, albeit barren, housewife who discovers that her devout husband has suffered a stroke at a sperm bank where he’s been secretly donating his seed for the past 25 years, she leaves her sheltered world and starts off on a journey to find his eldest biological son. (Robbie Pickering; USA; 2011; 89 min)
This is the story of a yellow Labrador Retriever guide dog for the blind named Quill. We follow Quill from the litter, his selection to become a guide, his life with a foster family until his first birthday, followed by highly specialized schooling in guiding the sightless. He is then paired with a blind man named Watanabe Mitsuru who is at first reluctant to rely on Quill. But Quill’s great patience, gentleness and skill eventually wins him over and they become inseparable friends. Documentary-like in style, this heart-warming film is not just a cute puppy movie. (Sai Yoichi; Japan; 2004; 100 min)
Karen discovers – after 10 years of marriage – that her dreams got lost somehow. So she leaves her macho husband and takes to the streets of Bogota in hopes of starting a new, independent life. Without friends or family to lean on, she quickly finds herself marginalized by society and stuck begging for change at the bus station. With the help of a young, empowered hairdresser, her life inches toward hope. Featuring a brave performance by Angela Carrizosa, present in every scene, the film explores contemporary social issues in Colombia in a fresh light. (Gabriel Rojas Vera; Columbia; 2011; 97 min)
He is as controversial as ever, but Von Trier’s latest film may be his most breathtaking and moving yet. The title refers both to a planet “that’s been hiding behind the sun” and the crippling depression of new bride Justine (a magnificent Kirsten Dunst, winner of Best Actress at Cannes this year) whose mental illness is so severe she drives away her groom during their disastrous wedding reception. As the extinction of the planet looms over the characters, this mesmerizing film will have you by the lapels. Melancholia’s premise may be science fiction, but the feelings of despair it plumbs are the most heart-felt human drama. Features an all-star cast including Charlotte Gainsbourg, Alexander Skarsgård, Kiefer Sutherland, Charlotte Rampling, and John Hurt . (Lars Von Trier; Denmark/Sweden/France; 2011; 135 min)
So if you’re one of my in-real-life friends, and not a scary internet person I don’t know, and you are interested in any of these films, let me know and we can make movie plans! I considered doing a 6 film package, but decided that is too many films in too short a time. It would also have me going to films I am only kind of interested in, and since I don’t get to go to the movies too often anymore, I don’t want to waste my rare moviegoing experience on a film I find only marginally interesting. Mr. Beez is interested in all of the movies except the puppy movie….what kind of person doesn’t want to see a puppy movie?!?!