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by Peter Knegt
August 17, 2009 2:00 AM
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"Messenger" Opening Woodstock

Ben Foster and Woody Harrelson in a scene from Oren Moverman's "The Messenger." Image courtesy of Oscilloscope Laboratories.

Oren Moverman's "The Messenger" will kick off the 10th Anniversary of the Woodstock Film Festival on October 1st at the Tinker Street Cinema in Woodstock. Starring Ben Foster, Woody Harrelson, Samantha Morton and Steve Buscemi, the film debuted to warm notices at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival, and was recently picked up by Oscilloscope for release this Fall.

"The Messenger is a brilliant film, destined to be a classic, in which the darkest side of war is depicted without a single shot being fired" said WFF Executive Director and co-founder Meira Blaustein in a statement. "Grappling with all the pains and ethical dilemmas that war brings to the human spirit, this film is the perfect opener for the Woodstock Film Festival. We are thrilled to have it and are looking forward to share its perfectly nuanced and delicate composition with our audience."

The film marks the directorial debut of screenwriter Moverman (who wrote "I'm Not There"_, who will be attending the WFF screening/ "The Messenger ultimately deals with the desire to live, to let life into the darkness, even to laugh," said Moverman, in a statement. "It definitely makes the point that there are people who have to deal with war in a way that is not strategic or political, but personal."

The 10th Anniversary of the Woodstock Film Festival begins Wednesday Sept. 30th, and runs through Sunday Oct. 4th. The full schedule of events will be announced in Mid-September.

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