Indie

 

Fort Tilden

USA – 2014 – 95 MIN – COLOUR - FEATURE - IN ENGLISH
A FILM BY SARAH-VIOLET BLISS AND CHARLES ROGERS

A comedy about Allie and Harper and their needlessly difficult journey to the beach.

Fort Tilden: New York City’s secluded seaside nirvana where, like flies to honey, Brooklyn’s hip millennial set flocks on sweltering weekend afternoons for unbridled summertime indulgence. Amidst the vexing stagnation of quarter-life crises, Allie (Clare McNulty) struggles to prepare for the Peace Corps, while Harper (Bridey Elliott) awaits checks from her father to fund her artistic dreams. But the two friends quickly shun responsibilities for the day when a pair of good-looking guys invites them along for a carefree Fort Tilden afternoon. As the two young women board their fixed-gear bicycles and embark on a lengthy journey to the beach, they quickly realize that, akin to their confusing, transitioning lives, they neither know where they’re going nor how they plan to get there.

The debut feature film of directors Sarah-Violet Bliss and Charles Rogers – and showcasing the comedic versatility of Clare McNulty and Bridey Elliott as Allie and Harper – FORT TILDEN is a hilariously insightful and recognizable look at the consequences of extended adolescence.

 

GOD HELP THE GIRL

UNITED KINGDOM – 2013 – 111 MIN – COLOUR - FEATURE - IN ENGLISH
A FILM BY STUART MURDOCH

FEATURING EMILY BROWNING, OLLY ALEXANDER, HANNAH MURRAY

GOD HELP THE GIRL is a musical film written and directed by Stuart Murdoch of Belle & Sebastian.

Eve’s a troubled young girl who also has a talent for singing and songwriting, which in the darkest of times, becomes her way forward. Music leads her to Glasgow where she meets James and Cassie, two kindred spirits each at crossroads of their own. Together they dive into the city’s music scene as their lives and lyrics intertwine. What follows is an uplifting story of renaissance, friendship and romance over a long, dream-like summer.

 

Goddess

2013/ AUSTRALIA/IN ENGLISH/ 104 MINUTES

A FILM BY MARK LAMPRELL
WITH LAURA MICHELLE KELLY, RONAN KEATING, MAGDA SUBSZANKI

Full-time mum of twins, Elspeth Dickens (Laura Michelle Kelly), becomes a web sensation when she inadvertently broadcasts her sink songs across the internet. With Elspeth’s husband, James (Ronan Keating), at sea saving whales, advertising mogul Cassandra (Magda Szubanski) relishes the opportunity to exploit Elspeth s new-found fame by offering Elspeth her dream career in showbusiness. With her dreams of stardom within reach, Elspeth finds the choice between fame and family may come at the cost of losing both.

 

James White

USA – 2015 – 86 MIN – COLOUR - FEATURE
WITH: CHRISTOPHER ABBOTT, CYNTHIA NIXON, SCOTT MESCUDI, MACKENZIE LEIGH, DAVID CALL, RON LIVINGSTON
A FILM BY JOSH MOND

James White (Christopher Abbott) is a troubled twentysomething trying to stay afloat in a frenzied New York City. As he retreats further into a hedonistic lifestyle, his mother's battle with a serious illness faces a series of setbacks that force him to assume more responsibility. With the pressure on him mounting, James must find new reserves of strength or risk imploding completely.

James White is a confident and closely observed directorial debut that explores loss and the deep relationship between a mother and son. It marks Martha Marcy May Marlene producer Josh Mond's first appearance at the Festival as a writer/director. Abbott’s strong central performance is aided by a stellar supporting cast featuring Cynthia Nixon (Sex and the City), Scott "Kid Cudi" Mescudi, and Ron Livingston (Drinking Buddies). Shot on location in New York City with an intimate visual style and a driving contemporary soundtrack, James White follows its lead into deep, affecting places while still maintaining its fragile humanity.

 

L!fe Happens

USA / CANADA – 2014 – 118 MIN – COLOUR - FEATURE - IN ENGLISH
A FILM BY KAT COIRO
Featuring:  Krysten Ritter, Kate Bosworth, Rachel Bilson

From director Kat Coiro, and writers Kat Coiro and Krysten Ritter comes L!FE HAPPENS, a comedy centered on three young women – Kim (Krysten Ritter), Deena (Kate Bosworth) and Laura (Rachel Bilson) – who all live under the same roof in Los Angeles. When one of Kim’s one-night-stands results in an unexpected pregnancy, things take a sudden turn for the trio. 

With the help of her girlfriends, Kim must cope with single motherhood as she jumps back into the dating scene amid the fear that toting around a tot can be a dating ‘buzz-kill.’ Also featuring Jason Biggs, Seymour Cassel, Rhys Coiro, Justin Kirk, Kristen Johnston, Andrea Savage, Geoff Stults and Fallon Goodson, L!FE HAPPENS takes a look at single living, friendship and the joys of life’s curveballs.

 

Night of the Living Deb

USA/ 2015/ IN ENGLISH/ 85 MINUTES
A FILM BY KYLE RANKIN
FEATURING:  MARIA THAYER ,MICHAEL CASSIDY, RAY WISE, CHRIS MARQUETTE

Deb Clarington is a hardworking 30-year-old gal, not a stickler for hygiene and holding a terrible track record with men. That all changes when she wakes up on the Fourth of July in the apartment of the most attractive man she’s ever seen. Unfortunately neither she nor Ryan can explain exactly why they spent the night together, and there is some debate over how much even happened.

An awkward walk of shame turns even uglier when they discover that most of the town has contracted a helluva zombie virus overnight. In their fight for survival, they are forced back into each other’s arms – literally! Now they must find Ryan’s ex-girlfriend, paranoid father and apocalypse-survivalist brother and escape town… without killing each other in the process!

 

Old Stone

2016 - CHINA/ CANADA - 80 MINUTES - COLOUR - IN MANDARIN WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES
A FILM BY JOHNNY MA
FEATURING: GANG CHEN, AN NAI, HONGWEI WANG, ZEBIN ZHANG, XUE’ER LUO

In Johnny Ma’s thrilling debut feature, a Chinese taxi driver finds himself plunged into a Kafkaesque nightmare where no good deed goes unpunished. Beginning as a gritty social-realist drama before u-turning into a blood-drenched noir, Old Stone follows the repercussions of a car accident in a society where life is cheap and compassion is ruinously expensive. 

When a drunken passenger causes Lao Shi to swerve and hit a motorcyclist, the driver stops to help the injured man. When no police or ambulance arrive he drives the victim to the hospital, checks him in and finds himself liable for the man’s medical bills. The repercussions of Shi’s selfless act expose a society rife with bone-chilling callousness and bureaucratic indifference. On the verge of losing his cab, his job and his family, Lao Shi (in a magnificent performance by Chen Gang) has to resort to desperate measures to survive.

 

Petting Zoo

GERMANY - GREECE - USA – 2015 – 93 MIN – COLOUR - FEATURE
A FILM BY MICAH MAGEE

San Antonio, Texas. Seventeen-year-old Layla’s prayers are answered when she wins a college scholarship. From a low-income family, she has been working full time at a local telemarketing company and it hasn’t stopped her from being at the top of her high school class. Hanging out with her slacker boyfriend Danny and partying with her best friend Melanie round out Layla’s routine. But an unplanned pregnancy changes everything. Giving into family pressure, Layla decides against an abortion, drops her college dreams and moves into her loving Grandma‘s trailer on the edge of town. Layla moves forward confidently with her new daily life as a pregnant teenager, but she’s still anxious about the future. She ends up meeting a new boy – Aaron – different from everyone else, and starts a new job in a diner. Just as things seem to be falling into place again, fate throws another turn. As her social fabric unravels around her, Layla begins to see her environment differently, the first step toward finding herself.

 

The Congress

ISRAEL / GERMANY / POLAND / LUXEMBOURG / BELGIUM / FRANCE – 2013 – 120 MIN – COLOUR - FEATURE - IN ENGLISH
A FILM BY ARI FOLMAN

Robin Wright, playing the role of herself, gets an offer from a major studio to sell her cinematic identity: she'll be numerically scanned and sampled so that her alias can be used with no restrictions in all kinds of Hollywood films — even the most commercial ones that she previously refused. In exchange she receives loads of money, but more importantly, the studio agrees to keep her digitalized character forever young — for all eternity — in all of their films. The contract is valid for 20 years.

THE CONGRESS follows Robin as she makes her comeback after the contract expires, straight into the world of future fantasy cinema.

 

THE KEEPING ROOM

USA – 2013 – 95 MIN – COLOUR - FEATURE - IN ENGLISH
WITH BRIT MARLING, HAILEE STEINFELD, MUNA OTARU, SAM WORTHINGTON, KYLE SOLLER, 
A FILM BY DANIEL BARBER

In this radically reimagined American Western set towards the end of the Civil War, Southerner Augusta (Brit Marling, Arbitrage, The East) encounters two renegade, drunken soldiers (Sam Worthington, Avatar and Kyle Soller, BBC’s “Poldark”) who are on a mission of pillage and violence. After escaping an attempted assault, Augusta races back to the isolated farmhouse that she shares with her sister Louise (Hailee Steinfeld, True Grit, Pitch Perfect 2) and their female slave Mad (newcomer Muna Otaru.) When the pair of soldiers track Augusta down intent on exacting revenge, the trio of women are forced to take up arms to fend off their assailants, finding ways to resourcefully defend their home––and themselves––as the escalating attacks become more unpredictable and relentless.

Based on Julia Hart’s revered 2012 Black List screenplay, and directed by Academy Award® Nominated Daniel Barber (Harry Brown), The Keeping Room is a tense and uncompromising tale of survival that also shatters both gender and genre conventions.

 

THE LAST SURVIVORS

USA – 2014 – 95 MIN – COLOUR - FEATURE - IN ENGLISH
STARRING HAYLEY LU RICHARDSON AND BOOBOO STEWART (X MEN DAYS OF FUTURE PAST, TWILIGHT)
A FILM BY THOMAS S. HAMMOCK

The Last Survivors follows two teenagers battling to survive in a vast and barren valley, where it has not rained for ten years.  As the rain dried up, the rules of society simply blew away, leaving them to single-handedly fight off a gang of bloodthirsty mercenaries, hell bent on seizing their most precious possession, a small water-bearing well.