Cinema/Chicago’s yearly CineYouth Festival celebrates the work of youths 21 years old and younger, highlighting the creativity of the next generation of filmmakers. Best of the Fest showcases the winning films from the 2012 CineYouth Festival; categories include Documentary, Drama, Comedy and more. This screening will include a Q+A with select winning CineYouth filmmakers.
Featuring a brilliant performance from A Separation star Leila Hatami, Meeting Leila follows a young woman who demands that her chain-smoking fiancé quits smoking before their marriage. This poses a problem for this advertising agency idea man for whom smoking is an integral part of his creative process in this gently comic, insightful look at the compromises and negotiations required in any relationship.
Farsi with subtitles 88 min
You’ve secured funding, made your film, and navigated the festival circuit. Now what? Opportunities for distribution are more varied than ever before. Join a group of distributors, filmmakers and other experts to discuss distribution platforms, successful marketing strategies, and more.
The gruff, ogre-like Pumpkin and his young son live by themselves in the forest, but their comfortable isolation is disturbed when Pumpkin takes a near-fatal fall from a great height. His son, with the help of the benevolent spirits that inhabit the forest, must venture out into civilization for the first time in search of help. Filled with charming, gorgeous animation, Day of the Crows is an utterly delightful family film.
French with subtitles 94 min
In the midst of a freezing winter on the island of Sylt, Cem comes across Jesús, who is on the verge of committing suicide. The two young men become fast friends, with their friendship unexpectedly threatening to develop into something more. Cem and Jesús - laconic, alienated loners - find their previously uneventful lives starting to spin out of control now that each has someone who means something to him.
German with subtitles 90 min
A “subjective documentary” exploring the numerous theories about the secret, hidden meanings of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining, Room 237 is a guided tour through the most compelling attempts to decode this endlessly fascinating film. Director Rodney Ascher introduces us to the passionate amateur critics who devote themselves to Kubrick’s gothic horror masterpiece, following their dizzyingly complex, brilliant, and inventive analyses wherever they lead, creating a compulsively watchable tribute to obsessive cinephilia, and to a remarkable film.
English 102 min
When statistician John Wilkins is sucked out of a plane at 43,000 feet, he calculates that he has exactly 3 minutes and 48 seconds before he hits the ground in this clever little film about falling.Part of: Shorts 7: Chaos Theory
English 9 min
A wolf in sheep’s clothing thinks he is a sheep … True character is revealed in this truthful portrait of the fading echoes of a relationship.Part of: Shorts 7: Chaos Theory
English 13 min
Feisty 11 year old Astrid rebels against her mother and spends the afternoon in town with her friends. But when evening comes she has a little problem she needs to deal with.Part of: Shorts 7: Chaos Theory
Swedish with subtitles 15 min
Michael Fassbender stars in this dark, suspenseful tale of a professional safe cracker who encounters a hitch while on the job.Part of: Shorts 7: Chaos Theory
In life, things aren’t always what they seem, which can be good, bad, or disastrous in this fascinating selection of shorts in which the outcome is never quite what we expected. ASTRID (Sweden) follows an 11-year old rebelling against her mother and getting an unexpected problem to solve. With 43,000 FEET (New Zealand) to fall, John calculates he has exactly 3 minutes and 48 seconds before he hits the ground. In a factory farm, a chicken has a vision in TASTES LIKE CHICKEN? (Brazil). Set in 1980’s Athens, a young girl loses touch with her workaholic communist father in DAD, LENIN AND FREDDY (Greece). In the fading echoes of a relationship, character is revealed in ANOTHER BULLET DODGED (USA). Confused about the story he is telling, a French narrator jumps from story to story in VOICE OVER (Spain). Michael Fassbender stars as a professional safe cracker who encounters a hitch in PITCH BLACK HEIST (UK).
A witty, thought provoking experimental short following a factory farm chicken who has a vision: she becomes aware of the wheels that rule her life and her ultimate destiny.Part of: Shorts 7: Chaos Theory
English 15 min
A confused narrator jumps between three extreme situations ... but are they actually all the same? A brilliantly constructed short with a perfect payoff.Part of: Shorts 7: Chaos Theory
French with English subtitles 10 min
A nitro-fueled narco-thriller from director Oskar Thor Axelsson and executive producer Nicolas Winding Refn (Drive), Black’s Game chronicles the evolution of Iceland’s homegrown drug industry from boutique trade to deadly big business. Stebbi sets out to take over the Reykjavik drug trade by any means necessary. Axelsson captures the drug-induced rhythm of Stebbi and his cohorts in this stylish, thrilling tale of Reykjavik’s criminal underground.
Icelandic with subtitles 104 min
In 1989, the future of energy production seemed at hand, when Martin Fleischmann and Stanley Pons announced to the world the discovery of “cold fusion.” Garnering sensational media attention, their fast-rising reputation quickly faded when nobody could reproduce their claimed results. The Believers is not only the story of a quirk in the history of science, but a personal tale of belief, integrity, disappointment, and acceptance.
English 80 min
Based on a true story, Rhino Season follows Sahel, a poet who was unjustly incarcerated during Iran’s Islamic Revolution (and a friend of director Ghobadi). After being released into a world that is, three decades later, greatly changed, Sahel searches for the wife and children he left behind. Rhino Season is, at base, a tragic romance, strikingly told with an impressionistic, dreamlike blending of past and present.
Farsi 103 min
A slow-burning absurdist comedy, The Last Friday follows Youssef, a down-on-his-luck taxi driver whose lonely life changes suddenly when he learns he must have a testicular operation immediately. His son, meanwhile, must be sent to a private school. The money for both tuition and the operation is due by Friday. Youssef finds himself reaching out to estranged family members and friends, both for the money and to salvage what’s left of his life.
Arabic with subtitles 88 min
When a petty thief attempts to rob an old man, he not only fails but finds himself on a boat heading towards the lonely island where the man lives. A de facto prisoner on the island, the thief spends his days looking for escape, even as he can’t help but become more entangled in the lives of the few island misfits. Filled with beautiful images and light humor, Color of Sky is a thoroughly likeable modern-day fable.
Malayalam with subtitles 117 min
By the time he was arrested, Jeffrey Dahmer had killed and dismembered 17 victims, mostly in his nondescript Milwaukee apartment. Through interviews with neighbors and police, this documentary offers new insights even for those who know Dahmer’s story well, and a mixture of archival footage and recreations brings fresh detail and surprising humanity to the life of one of America’s most notorious serial killers.
English 75 min
In the deserts of Petra, Jordan, Mfadi struggles to decide whether to stay in his humble home or move his family to the city in a carefully observed study of a people and their changing way of life.Part of: Shorts 5: Spotlight Middle East
Arabic with subtitles 16 min
After two years together, the first big crisis in Alaa and Mai’s relationship is captured in this charming encounter in a Cairo café.Part of: Shorts 5: Spotlight Middle East
Arabic with subtitles 12 min
Iraq,1988. In a land devastated by war, Dileer and his sister just want to watch cartoons on television, but that seems to be more difficult than expected in this multi-award winning short.Part of: Shorts 5: Spotlight Middle East
Arabic/ Kurdish with subtitles 19 min
After a psychotic breakdown, Shay must readjust to life with his family. A moving, profound study of a troubled young man attempting to rebuild his life.Part of: Shorts 5: Spotlight Middle East
Hebrew with subtitles 19 min
A gorgeous and compelling selection of narrative, documentary and experimental shorts from across the Middle East. TSTL/ KING LOST HIS TOOTH (Lebanon) is an experimental diptych that plays with haphazard assemblage of words and phrases cut from a given paragraph. In a café in Cairo, a relationship goes through its first big test in CAFÉ REGULAR, CAIRO (Egypt). Two young filmmakers struggle to raise the budget for their next film in WAITING FOR P.O. BOX (Syria). A soldiers’ tale begins when a female garment appears in the barracks in UNDER THE COLORS (Iran). A couple are on a mission to send the perfect photograph to their son in THIS IS LONDON (Bahrain/UAE). A father struggles to decide whether to stay in his humble home in the deserts of Petra or move to the city in FACES (Jordan). After a psychotic breakdown, Shay must readjust to life with his family in RETURN (Israel). Set in 1988, the conflict between Iraq and Iran is reaching its final stage in LAND OF THE HEROES (Belgium/Iraq).
A rodent gets in the way of a couple's mission to send the perfect photograph to their son in London in this entertaining comedy.Part of: Shorts 5: Spotlight Middle East
Arabic with English subtitles 17 min
An experimental diptych which pays subversive homage to the 'cut-up' method - consisting of haphazard assemblage of words and phrases cut from a given paragraph. New meanings emerge through random or intentional syntax formations.Part of: Shorts 5: Spotlight Middle East
English 5 min
When a mysterious female garment is found in a soldier’s garrison, dealing with the situation proves trickier than expected. A meaningful social commentary cloaked in a deceptively simple story.Part of: Shorts 5: Spotlight Middle East
Persian with English subtitles 20 min
Two young filmmakers, Mustafa and Ayoub, are about to make their new film. On the night before their meeting with potential funders, they have some very interesting dreams. The story of an orange that grew … without a tree.Part of: Shorts 5: Spotlight Middle East
Arabic with subtitles 15 min
In the arid plains of northeastern Mexico, a group of communal ranchers confronts the annual drought, eking out survival as conditions force them to search far and wide for any signs of water. Following the residents of the community throughout their daily lives, the filmmakers create an inspiring portrait of human perseverance in the face of a natural environment that defies domestication in this much-praised, award-winning documentary.
Spanish with subtitles 90 min
Based on a true story, The Last Sentence follows celebrated Swedish journalist Torgny Segerstedt, who conducted his own campaign against the Nazis while navigating a fraught personal life. Officially neutral, Sweden’s leaders did their best to silence Segerstedt, fearing German reprisal, especially as the journalist began inciting the ire of top Nazi officials. Illustrious director Jan Troell (The Emigrants) brings a Swedish hero to life in this gripping, lyrical epic.
Swedish with subtitles 120 min
In the stark volcanic landscape of a remote Hawaiian community, Marshallese patriarch Jacob struggles to provide for his large family. When diagnosed with cancer, he eschews treatment in favor of earning as much as possible for his children and grandchildren. As his illness worsens, Jacob turns a small video camera on himself and begins to tell his own story and the tragic history of the Marshallese people in this hauntingly beautiful affirmation of family.
Marshallese with subtitles 87 min
Winner of the Golden Bear at this year’s Berlin Film Festival, this docudrama from the Taviani brothers (Padre Padrone) captures the preparations for a staging of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in Rome’s Rebibbia Prison. The performers - inmates, some of whom have been jailed for murder and other violent crimes - bring powerful new layers of meaning and emotion to the canonical play. Caesar Must Die is a memorable, emotional meditation on the transformative power of artistic production.
Italian with subtitles 76 min
Ever since she was abandoned as a toddler in the Jakarta Haven for Animals and adopted by their giraffe trainer, the zoo has been the only world Lana knows. When she encounters and falls in love with a charming magician, she decides to make her journey into the unfamiliar outside world in this delightful, romantic fable.
Indonesian with subtitles 96 min
In this offbeat coming-of-age tale, a charming, rebellious high school dropout named Kanta befriends the kind, provincial Shoji. The two bring out the best in each other, each gaining confidence from their friendship - especially regarding pursuit of the opposite sex. The working class Kanta becomes a sort of unruly anti-hero, maintaining his pride, defiance, and self-assurance even as his prospects seem increasingly grim.
Japanese with subtitles 113 min
Set aboard a fishing vessel, Leviathan documents a story of treacherous waters and working conditions through the stunning imagery of waves, machinery, and animal life. Directors Castaing-Taylor (Sweetgrass) and Paravel offer a thrilling first-hand view of roughnecked oceanic exploration. Not to be missed on the big screen, this film is a visceral, purely cinematic experience.
English 87 min
Gulzar, a boatman on Kashmir’s gorgeous, peaceful Dal Lake, plans on leaving his home for the city alongside his best friend Afzal. A military curfew puts their plans on hold, however. Forced to remain in his hometown, Gulzar meets Asifa, a pretty Kashmiri-American researcher studying the lake. A sweet and tender romance soon develops against a backdrop of jealousy, competition, and ongoing political turmoil.
Kashmiri with subtitles 82 min
Under the auspices of a more age-appropriate marriage to his handsome son, a stately Viennese patriarch brings Ayse, a pretty teenaged girl from the Turkish countryside, to live with him as a second wife. A special friendship develops between Ayse and Fatma, the first wife who is suffering from cancer and appreciates both the help and the companionship. Soon, however, an unexpected twist of fate puts this relationship to the test.
Turkish and German with subtitles 93 min
Based on the poignantly optimistic autobiographical writings of California-based journalist and poet Mark O’Brien, The Sessions tells the story of a man confined to an iron lung who is determined - at age 38 - to lose his virginity. With the help of his therapists and the guidance of his priest, he sets out to make his dream a reality. Starring Helen Hunt and John Hawkes.
English 95 min
In the 90s, Ron Waters (Harry Lennix) was the hottest comic in Hollywood. Richard Pryor-like in his trenchant social and political commentary, Ron ultimately was driven away by controversy that increased as he grew more successful. Now settled in Chicago doing regular standup routines at his wife’s (Tatum O’Neal) club, he is given a second shot at the big time. But, as he learns once again, fame and fortune come at a price.
English 97 min
The World Is Funny follows the wanderings of a loose network of characters. Told with meticulous precision, the connections between the characters and the profound implications of their stories grow in richness and complexity as the film progresses. A sharp, ironic sense of humor enriches a melancholy yet inspiring film that has been a gigantic hit in Israel, earning a record-setting 15 Ophir nominations (the Israeli Academy Awards®).
Hebrew with subtitles 122 min
In this epic historical romance, Queen Caroline falls passionately in love with an idealistic German doctor while her husband, King Christian VII, grows increasingly deranged. Directed and co-written by Nikolaj Arcel (co-screenwriter of the original Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), A Royal Affair is a powerful story about brave idealists who risk everything for love and for their commitment to the freedom of the Danish people.
Danish with subtitles 131 min
Desperately needing a change after a painful break-up, Simon relocates to Paris to find solace and affection in the “city of love” in this unsettling chronicle of a young man’s descent into madness. As he becomes involved with both a young prostitute and a sweet, perky college student, Simon’s fundamental mental instability becomes increasingly apparent, and it appears he may have an ominous potential for violence.
English 105 min
In a diverse and cosmopolitan contemporary Havana, young Arthur meets and falls in love with Cecilia, a beautiful prostitute. Their idyllic aspirations for love and happiness quickly meet with complications. Fable is ultimately a moving, sincere exploration of the possibilities for love in a city defined by economic and social adversity.
Spanish with subtitles 92 min
From Chicago filmmaker Julian Grant comes this “neo-noir musical crime drama.” Benji is set up to take the fall for an ill-fated kidnapping, but still finds time to sing when he isn’t hastily bandaging injuries or trying to determine the motivations of a stripper with questionable loyalties. Mixing visual styles and utterly defying any attempt at clear categorization, this catchy, gritty film is not to be missed.
English 84 min
21-year-old “actress” Jane spends her time getting high with her dysfunctional roommates and taking care of her Chihuahua, Starlet. Sadie, an 85-year-old widow, passes her days alone tending to her flower garden. An unlikely friendship forms between the two after Jane makes an intriguing discovery at Sadie’s yard sale. Jane attempts to befriend the caustic older woman in an effort to satisfy her curiosity, and secrets emerge as their relationship grows.
English 103 min
A poetic, tender road movie, A Secret World follows tormented teenager Maria as she makes her way through Mexico seeking her place in life. The film focuses on the pleasant beauty of the landscape and the eccentric, endearing personality of Maria as she comes into her own. Gorgeously filmed, this lyrical coming-of-age story doubles as a wistful hymn to a young woman’s self-discovery.
Spanish with subtitles 87 min
An audacious sci-fi thriller, Antiviral tells the gripping story of Syd March, an employee at a clinic catering to celebrity fetishists by selling them diseases extracted from their heroes’ bodies. Syd, who smuggles them onto the black market through his own body, infects himself with the mysterious virus that killed superstar Hannah Geist. Chased on all sides by those who want the disease, Syd realizes he must uncover an antidote before he succumbs.
English 110 min
A relaxing trip to the country for a family of stylish urbanites takes a dark and disturbing turn when they are visited by their seemingly harmless neighbors. As their unsophisticated guests’ behavior becomes increasingly strange and menacing, the family realizes that they are trapped in a terrifying and potentially deadly situation. Skillfully building the claustrophobic atmosphere with masterful control over mood and pacing, In Their Skin is a chilling, sophisticated slice of terror.
English 96 min
This eclectic encyclopedia of terror and bloodshed features 26 alphabetized segments, each helmed by a different prominent horror movie director. Spanning 15 countries, the offerings range from chilling and gruesome to irreverent and hilarious, as the directors explore the theme of death in many guises. Essential viewing for horror aficionados, The ABCs of Death is an original, provocative work from a who’s who of modern horror filmmakers.
English and various languages with subtitles 123 min
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