The Los Angeles Film Festival hits at a really unique time. Happening in June, the festival comes after the really big Sundance, SXSW and Cannes, which means they get to pick some of the best films that played at those fests. As a result LAFF often feels like a 'greatest hits' festival - with some killer new discoveries thrown in for good measure.
I can't speak as to what this year's killer new discoveries are yet, but I can tell you that the 'greatest hits' at this summer's LAFF are incredible. This year's lineup is a terrific run through some of the most interesting and exciting festival movies of the first half of the year. This year they also have some extraordinary retro screenings - Three Kings! Amarcord! - to really tempt you.
Here's the list of films playing this year. I have to hand it to the LAFF programmers - they've outdone themselves in 2013. When we get closer to the fest I'll run an article pulling out the most must-see movies. If you've been thinking about a trip to LA, this is as good a reason as any. Visit their site for more info.
Narrative Competition (12): The Narrative Competition is comprised of films made by talented emerging filmmakers that compete for the Filmmaker Award. The winner is determined by a panel of jurors, and films in this section are also eligible for the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature or Best International Feature. The Narrative Competition and Grand Jury Prize are sponsored by DIRECTV Cinema.
• All Together Now, Alexander Mirecki – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Forev, Molly Green, James Leffler – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Forty Years From Yesterday, Robert Machoian, Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Four Dogs, Joe Burke – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Goodbye World, Denis Henry Hennelly – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• The House That Jack Built, Henry Barrial – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• I.D., Kamal K M – India – NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
• Mother, I Love You, Janis Nords – Latvia – NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
• My Sister’s Quinceañera, Aaron Douglas Johnston – USA – NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
• Pollywogs, Karl Jacob, Todd Arthur Cottam – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Winter in the Blood, Andrew Smith, Alex Smith – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Workers, Jose Luis Valle – Mexico/Germany – US PREMIERE
Documentary Competition (10): The Documentary Competition is comprised of films made by talented emerging filmmakers that compete for the Documentary Award. The winner is determined by a panel of jurors, and films in this section are also eligible for the Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature or Best International Feature. The Documentary Competition and Grand Jury Prize are sponsored by DIRECTV Cinema.
• All of Me, Alexandra Lescaze – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs, Grace Lee – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Code Black, Ryan McGarry – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• The Island of Saint Matthews, Kevin Jerome Everson – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Llyn Foulkes: One Man Band, Christopher Quilty, Tamar Halpern – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• My Stolen Revolution, Nahid Persson Sarvestani – Sweden – NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
• The New Black, Yoruba Richen – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Rain, Olivia Rochette, Gerard-Jan Claes – Belgium – US PREMIERE
• Tapia, Eddie Alcazar – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Purgatorio, Rodrigo Reyes – Mexico/USA – US PREMIERE
International Showcase (15): The International Showcase highlights innovative independent narrative and documentary features from outside of the United States. Films in this section are eligible for Audience Awards for Best International Feature, Best Narrative Feature, or Best Documentary Feature.
• The Act of Killing, Joshua Oppenheimer, Christine Cynn – Denmark/Norway/UK (Drafthouse Films)
• Black Out, Eva Webber – UK – NORTH AMERCAN PREMIERE
• Boxing Day, Bernard Rose – UK
• Dormant Beauty, Marco Bellocchio – Italy
• Drug War, Johnnie To – China
• Ernest & Celestine, Stéphanie Aubier, Vincent Patar, Benjamin Renner – France (Gkids)
• The Expedition to the End of the World, Daniel Dancik – Denmark
• The Fifth Season, Peter Brosens, Jessica Woodworth – Belgium/Netherlands/France
• House with a Turret, Eva Neymann – Ukraine
• The Moo Man, Andy Heathcote, Heike Bachelier – UK
• Nobody’s Daughter Haewon, Hong Sang-soo – Korea – NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
• The Patience Stone, Atiq Rahimi – Afghanistan/France/Germany/UK (Sony Pictures Classics)
• Wadjda, Haifaa Al Mansour – Saudi Arabia/United Arab Emirates/Germany (Sony Pictures Classics)
• When I Saw You, Annemarie Jacir – Palestine/Jordan/Greece/United Arab Emirates/USA
• The Women and the Passenger, Valentina Mac-Pherson, Patricia Correra – Chile – US PREMIERE
Summer Showcase (17): The Summer Showcase section offers an advanced look at this summer’s most talked about independent film releases and will include highlights from the festival circuit and premieres. Films in this section are eligible for Audience Awards for Best International Feature, Best Narrative Feature, or Best Documentary Feature.
• Ain’t Them Bodies Saints, David Lowery – USA (IFC Films)
• Brothers Hypnotic, Reuben Atlas – Netherlands/USA
• Casting By, Tom Donahue – USA (HBO Films)
• Concussion, Stacie Passon – USA (RADiUS-TWC)
• The Crash Reel, Lucy Walker – USA (HBO Films)
• Crystal Fairy, Sebastián Silva – Chile (IFC Films)
• Europa Report, Sebastián Cordero – USA (Magnolia Pictures/Magnet Releasing) – US PREMIERE
• First Cousin Once Removed, Alan Berliner – USA (HBO Films)
• Harry Dean Stanton: Partly Fiction, Sophie Huber – Switzerland
• In a World…, Lake Bell – USA (Roadside Attractions)
• Our Nixon, Penny Lane – USA
• Our Vinyl Weighs A Ton, Jeff Broadway – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Short Term 12, Destin Daniel Cretton – USA
• The Spectacular Now, James Ponsoldt – USA
• Venus Vs., Ava DuVernay – USA (ESPN) – WORLD PREMIERE
Community Screenings (5): These films will be presented free to the public. New films in this section are eligible for Audience Awards for Best Narrative Feature or Best Documentary Feature.
• Brasslands, Adam Pogoff, Jay Sterrenberg, Bryan Chang – USA – FIGat7th Screening
• Dazed and Confused (1993), Richard Linklater – USA – 20th Anniversary Screening – FIGat7th Screening
• Hairspray (1988), John Waters – USA – Grand Park Dance-A-Long – 25th Anniversary Screening
• Inequality for All, Jacob Kornbluth – USA – Grand Performances Screening
• Life of a King, Jake Goldberger – USA– Project Involve Screening – WORLD PREMIERE
The Beyond (3): The Beyond offers films that dare to be different. Films in this section are eligible for Audience Awards for Best International Feature or Best Narrative Feature.
• Delivery, Brian Netto – USA – WORLD PREMIERE
• Lesson of the Evil, Takashi Miike – Japan – US PREMIERE
• You’re Next, Adam Wingard – USA (Lionsgate)
• Amarcord (1973), Federico Fellini – Italy – 40th Anniversary Screening
• Between Two Worlds (2009), Vimukthi Jayasundara – Sri Lanka/France – LAFCA’s The Film That Got Away
• Two Men in Manhattan (1958), Jean Pierre-Melville – France (Cohen Media Group) – 55th Anniversary Screening