Today the 56th San
Francisco International Film Festival (April
25–May 9) announced 22 films in competition for the New Directors Prize and the Golden Gate Award nominees for documentary
feature (in-depth look about the documentaries will be posted tomorrow). The International will award $15,000 for the New Directors Prize, which will be given to a narrative first feature that
exhibits a unique artistic sensibility and deserves to be seen by as wide an
audience as possible. Independent
juries will select the winners, which will be announced at the Golden Gate Awards, Wednesday, May 8.
View this year's narrative features below and remember the best value to watch them all is to purchase an Early bird CineVoucher 10-pack!
As a mysterious epidemic eviscerates Lima’s adult population—but spares its children—a solitary middle-aged forensic worker discovers an orphaned boy at one of his cleanup sites and decides to shelter the traumatized youth until he can find a relative to take him. As time passes, a subtle transformation takes hold of both man and child in this gently haunted and affecting study of social alienation and redemption.
Habi, the Foreigner
María Florencia Álvarez
North American Premiere
Highlighted by an impressive and subtle performance by Martina Juncandella, first-time director María Florencia Álvarez’s film traces a 20-year-old woman’s spontaneous attempt to create a new identity for herself as a Lebanese orphan in Buenos Aires. Sensitively examining the role of culture in self-definition, Habi, the Foreigner is a beguiling coming-of-age story detailing the feeling of being an outsider in your own land.
Memories Look at Me
In this strong feature debut, Song Fang directs and plays herself as she pays a visit to her parents at their home in Nanjing. Intimate and contemplative, Memories Look at Me muses on life, death and tradition while touching on the essence of family life with a mixture of melancholy and serenity.
Based on the director’s own experience, this powerful drama tells the story of a family torn between Japan and North Korea. Rie, an ethnic Korean, lives with most of her family in Tokyo. The arrival of the family’s son, repatriated 25 years earlier to North Korea, forces the family to navigate difficult political and emotional waters.