2015 Program

First Night Program
November 6, 2015 - 7:00pm

Download a PDF of the 2015 Program

The 10 films that make up the Opening Night Program are presented under the title “Broken Ground.” They are from 13 different countries, and all explore victimology and the power of human connection and compassion.

Filmmaker Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu has said that “Innocence can be more powerful than experience.” Sometimes our own innate sense of humanity can be the most powerful of weapons.

What separates us is what makes us human. Our individuality, like a fingerprint or a sequence of DNA, is what defines us from the hour of our birth until the moment of our death. Of course, we try to alter this reality. We twist and turn and contort the paths of our lives to try and bend this destiny to our own will. Ultimately, what makes us unique is what makes us special. Most of us spend our whole lives struggling to reach this conclusion.

The “human” in humanity is derived from the acceptance of this realization. It is extraordinary how much power simple acts of compassion and selflessness can yield. This program begins with Billy the Kid, a film whose central character refuses to yield his sense of self worth and individuality in the face of terrible odds. It concludes with Discipline, a film that explores just how distorted our world has become as we stray farther and farther from this simple path of honor and compassion.

The challenge is to learn how to respect beliefs that are not succinctly our own. The power comes from accepting the simple fact that we are all different, yet all of us are human.

 

Matinee Program
November 7, 2015 - 2:00pm

The 11 films that make up the Closing Night Program are presented under the title “Bound,” and represent 9 different nations.

Simply put, it is a program about connection. It begins with a quote from David Mitchell’s time-bending novel Cloud Atlas. Mitchell asks us to consider that we are bound to each other, that our lives are never fully our own because with each “crime and every kindness” we determine our future.

In a world that seems to be constantly dividing and sub-diving along lines of religion, politics, aggression, human rights, racism, respect for authority, and even basic human equality, what is the end?

We can no longer survive by escalating our isolation. We can no longer lead if hatefilled rhetoric is the calling card of those who announce themselves as “our leaders."

The films on this program all challenge us to recognize that we are, whether we want to acknowledge it or not, bound to each other as a human race. Turning our eyes away from each other will only, in the end, lead to our own spiritual blindness.

 

Second Night Program
November 7, 2015 - 7:00pm

The 10 films that make up the Matinee Program are presented under the title “Wise Blood,” and represent artists from 8 nations.

The program begins with a quote from I Know This Much is True, Wally Lamb’s revelatory novel about facing our fears and finding a path forward. At the heart of this program is Freud’s “return of the repressed”: the more we try to deny who we are the more we become what we fear.”

In our modern times, we all face the immediacy of our actions. In the age of instantaneous communication, words, more than ever before, become weapons as often as they lend comfort. So often our fears, not our hearts, dictate the outward expression of who we are.

My life, from an early age, was defined by dysfunction--not because of conflict or division, but because of a series of tragedies that were beyond my control. My grandmother, the anchor of that life, always told me that, "when we show the world our faces, what they see cannot be the sum of our fears. It must be the proof that we can triumph over them."

This program is filled with work from artists revealing, in ways both touching and difficult, the challenge of this journey.

In his film The River. My Brother, Me, filmmaker Timothy Elledge lays bare one of those moments we all will face in our lifetime. He shows us that grief will always give way to grace if we stand in triumph over that fear, and choose to move forward into a light that reveals our faith and the promise of who we are.