Six Decades

The San Francisco International Film Festival celebrates its sixtieth anniversary 5 – 19 April 2017.

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I first attended half a century ago at the Masonic Auditorium on a student ticket I obtained with my ID from the Alliance Française in Paris. At thirty I wasn’t the oldest person in the balcony, where student ticketholders were seated. Presently I qualify for senior tickets.

The film festival changed venues over the years. I remember its long run at the Castro Theatre and subsequently the Palace Of Fine Arts Theater before moving to the Kabuki.

This year’s numerous San Francisco venues are: the Alamo Drafthouse, Castro Theatre, Dolby Cinema, Proxy, Roxie Theater, SFMOMA, Victoria Theatre, Walt Disney Family Museum, YBCA, and Vogue Theatre, as well as BAMPFA in Berkeley.

Mediterranean offerings include: Everything Else directed by Natalia Almada (Mexico/USA/France) 2016, Marie Curie: The Courage of Knowledge directed by Marie Noëlle (Germany/France/Poland) 2016, Mister Universo directed by Tizza Covi & Rainer Frimmel (Austria/Italy) 2016, Story of a 3-Day Pass directed by Melvin Van Peebles (France) 1967, The Death of Louis XIV directed by Albert Serra (France/Portugal/Spain) 2016, and The Wedding Plan directed by Rama Burshtein (Israel) 2016.

Contact San Francisco Film Society for more information and tickets.

copyright © 2017 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved

www.nikosdiaman.com

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Meeting Again

Julieta directed by Pedro Almodóvar (Spain) 2016 is a departure from his recent comedies.

In the opening scenes of the film Julieta is packing her possessions in preparation to move from her apartment. She is about to begin a new life with her lover in a different European city.

However, a chance encounter with a woman she hasn’t seen for many years alters everything. She eventually admits her change of heart but refuses to tell her lover about the past.

After breaking up with him she struggles to deal with the painfully unresolved issues of her earlier life.

This beautifully produced work opens 6 January 2017 at the Landmark Clay in San Francisco.

copyright © 2016 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved

www.nikosdiaman.com

Frameline 40

The premier international LGBTQ film festival turns forty this year. Opening night is 16 June 2016 in the legendary Castro Theatre in the heart of San Francisco.

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There are ten films originating from four Mediterranean countries. France: Being 17; Paris 05:59: Theo & Hugo; and Summertime. Israel: One Last Night and Who’s Going To Love Me Now? Italy: Arianna; Irrawaddy Mon Amour; and Me, Myself And Her. Spain: Girl Gets Girl and Victor XX.

For more information and tickets contact www.frameline.org.

copyright © 2016 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved.

www.nikosdiaman.com

SFIFF 59

The 59th San Francisco International Film Festival takes place 21 April to 5 May 2016 at six Bay Area venues.

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France: The Apostate, As I Open My Eyes, Blood Of My Blood, Cowboys, Dead Slow Ahead, The Dream Of Bottom, The Innocents, Journey To The Shore, Love & Friendship, Microbe And Gasoline, Neither Heaven Nor Earth, Nephtali, No Home Movie, Phantom Boy, Suite Armoricaine, Welcome To My Life, The White Knights, Winter Song, and A Young Patriot.

Israel: Mountain, Mr. Gaga, and Presenting Princess Shaw.

Lebanon: Abu Ammar Is Coming and Very Big Shot.

Spain: The Apostate, Dead Slow Ahead, and Night Without Distance.

Turkey: Frenzy and Sept-Oct 2015 Cizne.

Also: Chevalier (Greece), Blood Of My Blood (Italy), False Start (Morocco), and As I Open My Eyes (Tunisia).

The San Francisco venues are Alamo Drafthouse New Mission, Castro Theatre, Gray Area, Roxie Theater, and Victoria Theatre. Plus the new BAMPFA in Berkeley.

For more information and tickets contact San Francisco Film Society.

copyright © 2016 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved.

http://www.nikosdiaman.com

SFJFF35

The 35th San Francisco Jewish Film Festival runs from 23 July to 9 August 2015 in San Francisco, Berkeley, Oakland, Palo Alto, and San Rafael.

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Among the dramatic features are: A La Vie; The Law; Manpower; Mr. Kaplan; My Shortest Love Affair; Once In A Lifetime; Open Bethlehem; Papa Was Not A Rolling Stone; Partner With The Enemy; Probation Time; Red Leaves; and Villa Touma.

A couple of relevant documentaries are: The Go-Go Boys: The Inside Story Of Cannon Films and Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict.

For more information contact the Jewish Film Institute.

copyright © 2015 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved.

http://www.nikosdiaman.com

Spanish Touch

Hidden Away directed by Mikel Rueda (Spain) 2014 is about a tentative relationship that develops between two teens, Rafa, who’s Spanish, and Ibra, a Tunisian immigrant, in the backstreets of Bilboa. They share much despite their cultural differences. Each somewhat distant from his immediate circle. United by a generous spirit.

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The film screen a final time Friday evening 26 June 2015 at the Victoria Theater during Frameline 39, the San Francisco International LGBTQ Film Festival. For more information and tickets contact Frameline.

While this is the only dramatic feature from Spain in the festival, there are a dozen others from Latin America.

In The Gray Scale directed by Claudio Marcone (Chile) 2015 focuses on an architect who questions the traditional life he’s been leading. He withdraws from his wife and young son to assess his emotional condition. While searching Santiago for a likely monument that will deflect attention from the shoddy practices of a construction company, he is accompanied by an openly gay guide who seems to embody the qualities he desires.

This film screens a final time Sunday afternoon 28 June 2015 at the Castro Theatre during Frameline 39.

Liz In September directed by Fina Torres (Venezuela) 2015 is an adaptation of the Jane Chambers play, Last Summer At Bluefish Cove. However, he film version takes place on a beach in the Caribbean. A group of women who gather yearly in a modest resort outside of town welcomes an outsider while her car is being repaired without surprising consequences.

Mariposa directed by Marco Berger (Argentina) 2015 follows the lives of several people in two alternative realities. Hairdos deliniate one version from another but it’s still a challenge to follow. It’s an interesting but challenging concept made more difficult by the quick pace of the subtitles.

Frameline 39 continues through the coming weekend. For more information and tickets contact Frameline.

In The Gray Scale and Liz In September are also on the program of Outfest in Los Angeles next month.

copyright © 2015 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved.

http://www.nikosdiaman.com

Frameline 39

The San Francisco International LGBTQ Film Festival screens at five Bay Area venues 18 – 28 June 2015. The Castro Theatre, Roxie Theater, and Victoria Theatre in San Francisco, Rialto Cinemas’ Elmwood in Berkeley, and Landmark Theatres Piedmont in Oakland.

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I highly recommend Sworn Virgin directed by Laura Bispuri (Italy/Switzerland/Germany/Albania/Kosovo) 2015 and Xenia directed by Panos H. Koutras (Greece/France/Belgium) 2014, both award winning films.

Three other Mediterranean features are Hidden Away directed by Mikel Rueda (Spain) 2014, The New Girlfriend directed by François Ozon (France) 2014, and Summer Nights directed by Mario Fanfani (France) 2014.

Contact Frameline for more information and tickets

copyright © 2015 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved

www.nikosdiaman.com