By Peter Knegt | Indiewire September 10, 2013 at 11:31AM
SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS (cont'd)
Set against the romantic desolation of Detroit and Tangier, an underground musician, deeply depressed by the direction of human activities, reunites with his resilient and enigmatic lover. Their love story has already endured several centuries at least, but their debauched idyll is soon disrupted by her wild and uncontrollable younger sister. Can these wise but fragile outsiders continue to survive as the modern world collapses around them? Starring Tom Hiddleston, Tilda Swinton, Mia Wasikowska, John Hurt and Anton Yelchin.
The Past (Le Passé) Asghar Farhadi, France/Italy North American Premiere
Following a four year separation, Ahmad returns to Paris from Tehran, upon his French wife Marie's request, in order to finalize their divorce proceedings. During his brief stay, Ahmad discovers the conflicting nature of Marie's relationship with her daughter Lucie. Ahmad's efforts to improve this relationship soon unveil a secret from their past.
Philomena Stephen Frears, United Kingdom North American Premiere
Based on the 2009 investigative book by BBC correspondent Martin Sixsmith, The Lost Child of Philomena Lee, this film focuses on the efforts of Philomena Lee (Judi Dench), mother to a boy conceived out of wedlock — something Philomena’s Irish-Catholic community didn’t have the highest opinion of — and given away for adoption in the United States. Following church doctrine, she was forced to sign a contract that wouldn’t allow for any sort of inquiry into her son’s whereabouts. After starting a family years later in England and, for the most part, moving on with her life, Philomena meets Sixsmith (Steve Coogan), a BBC reporter with whom she decides to track down her long-lost son.
Pioneer (Pionér) Erik Skjoldbjærg, Norway/Germany/Sweden/France/Finland International Premiere
Pioneer is set in the early 80s, at the beginning of the Norwegian oil boom. Enormous oil and gas deposits are discovered in the North Sea and the authorities aim to bring the oil ashore through a pipeline from depths of 500 meters. A professional diver, Petter is obsessed with reaching the bottom of the Norwegian Sea. Along with his brother Knut he has the discipline, strength and courage to take on the world's most dangerous mission. But a sudden, tragic accident changes everything. Petter is sent on a perilous journey where he loses sight of who's pulling the strings. Gradually he realizes that he is in way over his head and that his life is at stake.
Prisoners Denis Villeneuve, USA World Premiere
How far would you go to protect your family? Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman) is facing every parent’s worst nightmare. His six-year-old daughter, Anna, is missing, together with her young friend, Joy, and as minutes turn to hours, panic sets in. The only lead is a dilapidated RV that had earlier been parked on their street. Heading the investigation, Detective Loki (Jake Gyllenhaal) arrests its driver, Alex Jones (Paul Dano), but a lack of evidence forces his release. As the police pursue multiple leads and pressure mounts, knowing his child’s life is at stake the frantic Dover decides he has no choice but to take matters into his own hands. But just how far will this desperate father go to protect his family? Also features Melissa Leo, Maria Bello, Viola Davis and Terrence Howard.
Quai d'Orsay Bertrand Tavernier, France World Premiere
Alexandre Taillard de Vorms is a force to be reckoned with. With his silver mane and tanned, athletic body, he stalks the world stage as Minister of Foreign Affairs for France, waging his own war backed up by the holy trinity of diplomatic concepts: legitimacy, lucidity, and efficacy. Enter Arthur Vlaminck. Hired to write the minister's speeches, Arthur must contend with the sensibilities of his boss and the dirty dealings within the Quai d'Orsay, the ministry's home.
Koichi and Atsumi are lovers who have known each other all their lives. A year ago, Atsumi apparently tried to commit suicide and has been in a coma since then. Through ‘sensing’, a type of neurological treatment allowing communication with a comatose patient, Koichi tries to find out why she tried to kill herself. Starring Takeru Satoh and Haruka Ayase.
Rock the Casbah Laïla Marrakchi, France/Morocco International Premiere
A bittersweet comedy that plays out around a family coming to terms with grief, disclosures, secrets and reckoning, Rock the Casbah follows one family during the three days of mourning called for by Moroccan custom, as they reunite in their deceased patriarch’s villa. When youngest daughter, Sofia, arrives unexpectedly, sparks start to fly. She left for America — against her father’s wishes — to become a successful actress, but she only ever landed roles in TV series playing terrorists. Secrets come out, throwing the order once maintained by their patriarch into turmoil. Starring Omar Sharif, Hiam Abbass, Nadine Labaki, Lubna Azabal and Morjana Alaoui.
Singing Women (Sarki Söyleyen Kadinlar) Reha Erdem, France/Germany/Turkey World Premiere
An unlikely group of distressed women struggle with their tribulations, but are united by extraordinary reserves of energy, courage, hope and faith. As the women transform their tragedy into songs of rebellion and life, they also infect the frustrated, never-grown-up child Adem with the joys of being human. The film follows the group throughout their inspiring journeys into different dimensions of existence. Starring Binnur Kaya, Philip Arditti, Kevork Malikyan and Aylin Aslım.
Southcliffe Sean Durkin, United Kingdom International Premiere
A sudden inexplicable spate of shootings rips through the market town of Southcliffe. The lives of those left behind are torn apart. In this haunting drama a journalist reporting on the tragedy finds himself back in the small town he grew up in, looking for answers from the shattered community whilst trying to reconcile the dark events from his own past. Starring Rory Kinnear, Sean Harris, Shirley Henderson, Anatol Yusef and Eddie Marsan.
Starred Up David Mackenzie, United Kingdom World Premiere
When troubled teenager Eric is transferred to an adult prison, the new environment serves only to amplify his ultra-violent behavior. He soon comes to the attention of the prison kingpin, who assigns his lieutenant Nev to keep the boy under control. The problem however is that Nev is Eric’s father. They have not seen each other for 12 years, and an uncomfortable stand-off begins as father and son battle to gain some kind of understanding after a decade of mistrust and separation.
Sunshine on Leith Dexter Fletcher, United Kingdom World Premiere
The sophomore feature from British actor-turned-director Dexter Fletcher (Wild Bill) stars Peter Mullan (Tyrannosaur) and Jane Horrocks (Little Voice) in a vibrant cinematic adaptation of the acclaimed stage musical, inspired by the chart-topping album from Scottish band The Proclaimers. Also starring George MacKay, Kevin Guthrie, Antonia Thomas, Freya Mavor and Paul Brannigan.
Therese Charlie Stratton, USA World Premiere
Set in the lower depths of 1860s Paris, Therese is a tale of obsessive love, adultery and revenge, based on Émile Zola’s scandalous novel. Trapped in a loveless marriage to her sickly cousin, Therese embarks on an illicit affair with her husband's childhood friend that leads to tragic consequences. Starring Elizabeth Olsen, Tom Felton, Jessica Lange and Oscar Isaac.
Third Person Paul Haggis, Belgium World Premiere
Love, passion, mystery, betrayal and hope infuse Paul Haggis' new feature, which follows the interrelated stories of three couples in three cities, Rome, New York and Paris — each with its own secrets. Starring Liam Neeson, Mila Kunis, Adrien Brody, James Franco, Olivia Wilde, Maria Bello, Kim Basinger and Moran Atias.
Those Happy Years (Anni Felici) Daniele Luchetti, Italy World Premiere
Rome, 1974. Wannabe artist Guido feels trapped by his conventional life and beautiful, bourgeois wife, Serena. Their young sons, Dario and Paolo, are caught between their parents’ passion for each other, their rows and their infidelities. The film tells of those happy years, which seemed so unhappy at the time…
Tom At The Farm (Tom à la ferme) Xavier Dolan, Canada/France North American Premiere
Tom, a young advertising copywriter, travels to the country for a funeral. There, he's shocked to find out no one knows who he is, or his relationship to the deceased, whose brother soon sets the rules of a twisted game. In order to protect the family's name and grieving mother, Tom now has to play the peacekeeper in a household whose obscure past bodes even greater darkness for his trip to the farm.
Tracks John Curran, United Kingdom/Australia North American Premiere
Tracks is the true story of Robyn Davidson who trekked from Alice Springs in Central Australia through almost 2,000 miles of sprawling desert to the Indian Ocean, accompanied only by her loyal dog and four unpredictable camels. This epic and remarkable journey into Australia’s last great frontier was captured by charismatic National Geographic photographer Rick Smolan. These challenging and emotional nine months in the desert marked a new beginning for Robyn that would change the rest of her life. Starring Mia Wasikowska and Adam Driver.
Under the Skin Jonathan Glazer, USA/United Kingdom North American Premiere
The story of an alien in human form on a journey through Scotland. Part road movie, part science fiction, part real, it’s a film about seeing the world through alien eyes. Starring Scarlett Johansson.
Unforgiven (Yurusarezarumono) Lee Sang-il, Japan North American Premiere
Lee Sang-il’s visionary remake of Clint Eastwood’s iconic Academy Award–winning film transposes the classic Western to Meiji-period Japan. The Tokugawa shogunate has just collapsed and the Ainu aborigines strive to settle the land alongside the newly established government. Jubei Kamata is a relic of the Tokugawa shogunate, and during that time his name alone terrorized the whole of Kyoto as he killed countless loyalists in the name of the Shogun. After the fall, he vanished from sight. More than 10 years later, Jubei has fathered children with an Ainu woman and lives in a secluded hamlet, barely making a living. His wife — who succeeded in transforming him from a man who kills — had died, leaving him to a quiet life raising his children and tending her grave. However, poverty leads Jubei to abandon his resolve and once again turn to a life of violence. Starring Akira Emoto, Koichi Sato and Ken Watanabe.
Violette Martin Provost, France/Belgium World Premiere
Born out of wedlock early in the last century, Violette Leduc meets Simone de Beauvoir in postwar Saint-Germain-des-Près. An intense lifelong relationship develops between the two women authors, based on Violette's quest for freedom through writing and on Simone's conviction that she holds in her hands the destiny of an extraordinary writer.
Visitors Godfrey Reggio, USA World Premiere
Thirty years after Koyaanisqatsi, with support from Philip Glass and Jon Kane, Godfrey Reggio’s portrayal of modern life in Visitors leapfrogs beyond earth-bound filmmakers. Presented by Steven Soderbergh, Visitors offers an experience of technology and transcendental emotionality, taking viewers to the moon and back to confront them with themselves.
Walesa. Man of Hope. (Walesa. Czlowiek z nadziei.) Andrzej Wajda, Poland North American Premiere
How was it possible that a single man influenced contemporary world so significantly? This film is an attempt to capture the phenomenon of a common man’s metamorphosis into a charismatic leader — an attempt to see how a Gdansk shipyard electrician fighting for workers’ rights awakened a hidden desire for freedom in millions of people.
Watermark Jennifer Baichwal and Edward Burtynsky, Canada World Premiere
Watermark is a feature documentary film that brings together diverse stories from around the globe about our relationship with water: how we are drawn to it, what we learn from it, how we use it, and the consequences of that use. Shot in stunning 5K ultra high-definition video and full of soaring aerial perspectives.
Stockholm 1982. Bobo, Klara and Hedvig are three 13-year-old girls who roam the streets. Girls who are brave and tough and strong and weak and confused and weird. Girls who have to take care of themselves way too early. Girls who heat fish fingers in the toaster when mom is at the pub. Girls who start a punk band without any instruments, even though everybody says that punk is dead.
Le Week-End Roger Michell, United Kingdom World Premiere
Nick and Meg Burrows return to Paris, the city where they honeymooned, to celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary and rediscover some romance in their long-lived marriage. The film follows the couple as long-established tensions in their marriage break out in humorous and often painful ways. Starring Jeff Goldblum, Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan.
The Wind Rises (Kaze Tachinu) Hayao Miyazaki, Japan North American Premiere
Hayao Miyazaki brings together aircraft engineer Jiro Horikoshi and author Tatsuo Hori, to create Jiro — a fictional character at the centre of this tale of love, perseverance, and the challenges of living and making choices in a turbulent world. Featuring the voices of Hideaki Anno, Miori Takimoto, Hidetoshi Nishijima, Masahiko Nishimura, Jun Kunimura, Shinobu Otake and Mansai Nomura.
You Are Here Matthew Weiner, USA World Premiere
When Steve Dallas (Owen Wilson), a womanizing local weatherman, hears that his off-the-grid best friend Ben Baker (Zach Galifianakis) has lost his estranged father, the two return to Ben's childhood home. Once there, they discover Ben has inherited the family fortune, and the ill-equipped duo must battle Ben's formidable sister (Amy Poehler) and deal with his father's gorgeous 25-year old widow (Laura Ramsey). You Are Here is a contemporary adult comedy about family, friendship, money, and the people who keep it all afloat.
Young and Beautiful (Jeune & jolie) François Ozon, France/Belgium North American Premiere
A coming-of-age portrait of a 17-year-old French girl over four seasons and four songs — from her sexual awakening to her first time; from her exploration of love to her search for her identity.
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