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American Museum of Natural History Presents the Margaret Mead 2013 Film Festival

American Museum of Natural History Presents the Margaret Mead 2013 Film Festival

The 2013 Margaret Mead Film Festival will be held from Thursday, October 17th through Sunday, October 20th at the American Museum of Natural History. The theme of this year’s festival delves into how humans perceive culture by way of various and distinct artistic narratives. The festivals’ lineup will include 16 U.S. premieres, including “Miss Nikki and the Tiger Girls,” which will screen opening night on Thursday, October 17th. Here’s a selection of the films included, with descriptions from the festival:

Allan Baldwin: In Frame, directed by Tearepa Kahi Gyumri. Photographer-turned-historian Allan Baldwin’s magnificent pictures of Maori tattoos are a tribute to a dying traditional art form. (U.S. premiere)

And Who Taught You to Drive?, directed by Andrea Thiele. Three people’s humorous attempts to get driver’s licenses while living abroad—American Jake in Japan, German Mirela in India, and South Korean Hye-Won in Germany—create a sly, warmhearted exploration of cultural difference and acceptance. (New York premiere)

Chimeras, directed by Mika Mattila.  An intense exploration of modern Chinese identity is told through the parallel stories of a rising photography star (Liu Gang) and an aging pop-art icon (Wang Guangyi). (New York premiere)

Finding Hillywood, directed by Leah Warshawski and Chris Toweyrected. As pioneers of Rwanda’s film industry bring locally made films to rural communities, thousands come for their first experience of cinema, watching in stadiums built next to mass graves. This unique and compelling chronicle of the very beginning of Rwanda’s film industry reveals the power of film to heal a man and a nation. (New York premiere)

Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth, directed by Frauke Sandig and Eric Black. How do the Maya of today feel about their ancient ancestors’ conviction that the world would end in 2012? Six young Maya put forth an indigenous perspective in a film that forgoes narration to follow their daily lives. (New York premiere)

Iceland Year Zero, directed by Sigurður Hallmar Magnússon. Iceland after the financial collapse is a bankrupt nation where thousands who lost their assets are reassessing the value of capitalism. (U.S. premiere)

Queen of the Desert, directed by Alex Kelly. Starlady Nungari, a real-life Priscilla Queen of the Desert, is not your ordinary youth worker: with fabulous hair and outfits, she is training some of Australia’s most isolated teenagers in the art of hairdressing. (New York premiere)

Tales From the Organ Trade, directed by Ric Esther Bienstock. Every 60 minutes a human organ is sold illicitly. The shadowy world of international black market organ trafficking is a drama of endless moral and ethical complexity. (New York premiere)

This Ain’t No Mouse Music!, directed by Chris Simon and Maureen Gosling. Roots music icon Chris Strachwitz, founder of Arhoolie Records, has fought against what he calls slick “mouse” music since 1960. Join him for on a hip-shaking stomp from Texas to New Orleans, Cajun country to Appalachia, on a passionate quest for the musical soul of America. (New York premiere)

Three Voices (Diario a Tres Voces), directed by Otilia Portillo Padua. Three generations of Mexican women sit in their homes and reflect on love and sex in a rich visual world inspired by ‘40s Technicolor films. (New York premiere)

The festival focuses primarily on international documentary filmmakers from various countries from around the world. 20 filmmakers and film subjects will be present for table discussions as well as intimate Q&As with audience members.

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