Jacksonville Film Festival, Actress Christina Wren, Women's Perspective, San Marco Theatre
Actress Christina Wren will be a special guest at the Women's Perspective Panel Saturday morning.

Putting Jax on the International Map: The Jacksonville Film Festival Returns

2019 Jacksonville Film Festival

If you want to reach people universally, you need to speak specifically. For Jacksonville Film Festival’s Tim Driscoll, art in all its forms is a way of educating each other on our perspectives and our lives. Film as a medium incorporates the individual performance elements that connect us all as human beings in a universal language we all understand.

As program director of the Jacksonville Film Festival, Driscoll mined through hundreds of submissions to create an inclusive schedule that demonstrates humanity in all its forms. The 2019 Jacksonville Film Festival returns November 15-18 at the San Marco Theatre (www.jacksonvillefilmfestival.com). 

The Jacksonville Film Festival is an annual international film festival that showcases in-competition and out-of-competition American and International independent films. Categories include shorts, animations, documentaries, student films and more. Awards are presented for the Best Narrative Feature, Best Documentary Feature, Best Short Narrative, Best Short Documentary and Best of Festival.

“This year, we had 470 films submitted from 41 countries, and, from those, we only accepted 100 films representing 21 countries, and 26 percent is female-directed films,” says Jacksonville Film Festival president Niki Logoreci. “It’s really interesting to view the heart and the culture of every film. A film from Iran is very different than a film from Italy. And we have a lot of U.S. films that are very, very different from the Japanese films. We want to make sure we have films that people will love, and also showcase films that are pushing the art form forward.”

TICKETS ON SALE NOW! 2019 Jacksonville Film Festival Returns Nov 15-17

The festival’s theme “First Hollywood” is a nod to Jacksonville’s decorated film history as country’s the Winter Film Capital of the World. In a nod to the city’s past, the festival will feature a special screening of the 1939 classic film “The Wizard of Oz.” 

For over a century, Jacksonville was home to 30 film studios and played a vital role in the country’s film history. The festival recalls Jacksonville’s past as a destination for the independent film community and future generations of filmmakers poised to utilize the city as their canvas.

“There’s a whole history of Jacksonville being an early foundational piece in cinema. What I wanted to do with this festival specifically was to revisit the idea that cinema kind of belongs here. We didn’t have it here for a long time, but the roots are still there. We wanted to bring a film with historic merit, celebrating its 80th anniversary this year, which is awesome, but also ties into Jacksonville,” notes Driscoll. 

“With “The Wizard of Oz,” the assistant makeup artist William Tuttle was born and raised in Jacksonville before he moved to Los Angeles. He worked on hundreds of movies and eventually won an Oscar for his work. “The Wizard of Oz” is still an influential film. We still show it to our kids and still use as a metaphor for courage and bravery.”

Jacksonville Film Festival, Christina Wren, Women's Perspective, San Marco Theatre
Actress Christina Wren will be a special guest at the Women’s Perspective Panel Saturday morning

Guest appearances at the 2019 Jacksonville Film Festival include actress Christina Wren, who appeared in such films as “The Man of Steel” and “Batman vs. Superman.” Wren will share her experiences as a mom and working actress in an effort to bring more awareness to the inequities of directing opportunities for individuals outside the traditional white, male role.

“We wanted to have someone come in and talk to us about what it’s like for being an actress, a producer, a director and a writer. So, we’re excited to have her come in to inform not just our white, male audience, but everyone else who looks like her and thinks like her to know what it’s really like. The industry is changing, which is great, and that’s good, but there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done.”

Wren’s husband Demetrius won Best Feature Film at last year’s festival and serves as Jury President. He will present at the Jacksonville Film Festival award ceremony. Special presentations will be held in the day’s preceding the official start of the festival.

Frankllin Ritch’s new feature film “Teardrop Goodbye” will kick off the 2019 Jacksonville Film Festival week on Monday, November 18. Driscoll served as producer the last summer, with a cast comprised solely of local actors. Ritch received the 2018 City of Jacksonville Film and Television Office Rising Star award and had a film at the Fantastic Fest last year in Austin. “I don’t say this lightly, but I’ve never seen a movie like this,” he says. “It’s very funny, very poignant, and anyone who has ever watched a director’s commentary of a film is going to have a great time watching and listening to this movie.”

Scene from "Fly Like a Girl" Directed by Katie McEntire Wiatt, Jacksonville Film Festival, San Marco Theatre
Scene from “Fly Like a Girl” Directed by Katie McEntire Wiatt

On November 19, the Jacksonville Film Festival will screen the film “Fly Like a Girl,” a documentary produced by local filmmakers about female pilots. Taylor Richardson, a Bolles student who has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey show and is a huge proponent of girls STEM classes, is featured in the documentary.

A showcase featuring the work of locally written, directed, produced and starring Jacksonville filmmakers will be presented Wednesday. The event is a partnership with the Jacksonville Film Bar, which meets every Monday.

“The improvement over the last two years has been remarkable. I think we are very close to really putting a firm flag in the ground saying Jacksonville is a place where you want to make independent films,” says Driscoll. Screening “The Wizard of Oz” is a hopeful metaphor for the Jacksonville Film Festival’s continued success in Jacksonville. “It’s something we can all relate to with the clicking of the heels, wanting to go back home. If you don’t believe me, come check out these short films. I think you might have a change of heart.”

The decision to reignite the Jacksonville Film Festival as an established brand instead of building a new one from scratch was an important consideration when the event returned after a hiatus that led to a change in ownership. For Logoreci, getting to step in and guide the future of the Jacksonville Film Festival was a personal mission that allowed him to give thanks to the very event that shaped his love of film.

“When I was younger, I made short films with my friends in school. I volunteered for the Jacksonville Film Festival when I was really young, like 16,” recalls Logoreci, who required parental consent because of his age. “Part of the volunteer work was to drive a car because at that time they had multiple locations, so they needed to go from San Marco Theatre to Florida Theatre to Five Points, and I was too young for any of that. So, I had to get my parents to drive me.”

Throughout the process, Logoreci learned the various behind-the-screens responsibilities that he would eventually put into practice. When he discovered the event hit a pause, he contacted the board members and people involved, assembling a positive team eager to bring it back.

“Everyone was super supportive. They saw this kid that was very passionate with a vision to continue the legacy of the film festival. It took me a while, but that’s what I did,” he says of his efforts which began in 2014. He officially assumed the leadership role in 2016, and two years later, it was lights, camera, action.

“In September, 2018, we had a full, two-day festival, and here we are in 2019 doing it again,” remarks Logoreci. “I went from a kid that was excited about volunteering to actually running the event. The city needs an international film festival of this caliber, and I wanted to continue the Jacksonville legacy because that’s where I felt at home. Hopefully we will touch as many people as we can, including high school and college people like I was, coming to this festival.”

Liberty, Directed by Faren Humes of Miami, Jacksonville Film Festival, San Marco Theatre
“Liberty” By Director Faren Humes from Miami will be featured in the Moonlight: Florida Shorts program Saturday afternoon

Driscoll takes a more pragmatic approach to the city’s film history and geographical location, but his passion for the art form is not to be undervalued. 

“I know Niki has a different and more personal connection to it. I think for me, I was onboard just sharing Niki’s vision and what he wanted to do. I believed Jacksonville needed, and should have, a premier film festival. I think we’re still some ways away from a premier festival like Toronto and Sundance, but I believe Jacksonville is a place that could have that,” he says,

“Where we are geographically is a place that I think is worth visiting. Culturally and artistically, it’s something I wanted to be in Jacksonville. Whether it be the Jacksonville Film Festival or a festival in Jacksonville, I think it made sense. There’s already built in marketing to really tell people what we are. The Jacksonville Film Festival was around for 10 years and people know what it is.”

Many people Driscoll encountered were familiar with the festival by name but were unaware that it was placed on hold for the last few years. “It was kind of disappointing because it was like ‘did you just not go to it? But at the same time, there’s excitement from people who are like ‘yeah, the film festival! I didn’t know you guys were still doing that.’ It’s kind of bittersweet.”

Throughout the journey, Driscoll has remained committed to growing the brand and establishing a niche festival that draws filmmakers and aficionados worldwide to the event. Fans from across the globe share a common appreciation.

Jacksonville Film Festival, Adventures of Wonderboy
“Adventures of Wonderboy” is part of the Same Kind of Different As Me: Shorts Film Block Saturday morning

Programming a mixed bag of film, inching toward the goal as an Academy-qualifying event in five years, winners in short subject, documentary or narrative would be eligible for Oscar nomination. “I don’t want just anything. I want the best stuff that is coming out across the globe for specifically short content, but also, of course, feature films. I want to find short films that are really pushing cinema forward, and find things that are aggressive, that are bold in storytelling, but I also want to balance those two things…I want to balance that with knowing I have an audience that may not be used to that kind of storytelling. So I want to find stuff that is still really good, craft but maybe the subject matter aren’t quite as aggressive or techniques aren’t quite as bold.”

Exposing audiences to international voices in film provides a platform to reach new audiences and demonstrate the cross-cultural elements we all share. “It gets us out of our own little bubble. I find it a little more inclusive in terms of the artistic merit. In cinema, the only unique art form is editing. Everything else can be done in other art forms, so it’s really a collection of all the art forms, which is why I like movies. Internationally, it opens us–our minds and ideas to what is going on with other people,” says Driscoll. 

After Emma, Jacksonville Film Festival, San Marco Theatre
“After Emma” is about father on trial for a tragic mistake tries to make peace with the destruction of his family, included in the Scenes From a Marriage: Shorts film block taking place Saturday evening

“If we stay to closed into our own perspectives and ideas, we lose sight of what other people deal with both in traumas and tragedies but also in what gives them joy. Exposing audiences to cinema from around the world, it’s easier for us to recognize that we are all fundamentally the same. We cry about the same things. We laugh at the same things, and I think that it’s helpful in how we approach each other. A lot of us know what depression looks like, and we might enter it through various things. We know what joy looks like, and we understand the expression of that emotion, so I think different cultural films are interesting because I still know that feeling. Feelings are universal, and we can all relate. How we get to those feelings is not.”

In five years, Driscoll not only has his sights set on the Jacksonville Film Festival as an Oscar-qualifying event, but hopes to expand the event throughout the San Marco Square in partnership with the restaurants and businesses. 

“Right now, we’re at the San Marco Theatre, and they are terrific partners. But within five years we want to be closing off the streets in the square. People will be eating great food, listening to great music, watching great movies, and attending great panels with actors and filmmakers to learn about the industry,” he says. 

“The easiest part of filmmaking is the actual making of the movie. The hardest part is afterwards. We’re going to have people come in and tell you how to get your movie sold, how to get your movie in front of other people, how to make your next movie. That’s the part most young filmmakers are unaware of, and we’re going to kick those doors in.”

 

2019 Jacksonville Film Festival Guide

VIEW: JACKSONVILLE FILM FESTIVAL TICKETS
VIEW: 2019 JACKSONVILLE FILM FESTIVAL SCHEDULE AT-A-GLANCE


FRIDAY: NOVEMBER 15, 2019

7:30pWizard of Oz 80th Anniversary Screening dir Victor Flemming (out of competition)


SATURDAY: NOVEMBER 16, 2019

• THE PEACE YOUR VALOUR WON BLOCK •

Love Separated in Life… Love Reunited in Honor  (U.S./Vietnam – dir Jackie Wright, Parental Guidance suggested)  50 Years after the Vietnam War, siblings move father from a segregated cemetery to Arlington National Cemetery and also find a U.S. military base in Vietnam named after their father.

Who Killed Lt Van Dorn (U.S. – dir Zachary Stauffer, Adult Content)  Lt. Wes Van Dorn, a 29-year-old United States Naval Academy graduate and the married father of two young sons, died when the helicopter he was piloting crashed off the coast of Virginia during a 2014 training exercise. Motivated by her grief, his wife Nicole sought an explanation for the cause of the disaster. Her efforts spurred an investigation that uncovered a long history of negligence and institutional failings around the 53E helicopter—the model Van Dorn was piloting when he was killed, and the deadliest aircraft in the US military. Through incisive reporting and interviews with Van Dorn’s colleagues and family, Who Killed Lt. Van Dorn? is at once a poignant picture of one family’s tragedy, as well as a revelatory inquiry into the murky inner-workings of the American defense establishment.

• SAME KIND OF DIFFERENT AS ME: SHORTS BLOCK •

Adventures of Wonder Boy  (U.S. – dir Marti Young, Parental Guidance Suggested)  When the nefarious Dr. Black threatens the future of Nashville, it’s up to Wonderboy to save the day.

Blackwood  (Australia – dir Kalu Oji – official selection Atlanta Film Festival, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Following mother and son, the film intertwines spoken word with traditional narrative to explore the intricacies of family, self love and empowerment.

Il Tratto (The Line)  (Italy – dir Alessandro Stevanon, Parental Guidance Suggested)  A meeting with an old artist coming from Senegal helps Federico discover his talent and learn to see others for who they are.

Ruth  (U.S. – dir Alex Rollins Berg, Parental Guidance Suggested)   A woman grapples with a crisis at work while tending to her ailing mother.

Azadeh  (Iran – dir Mirabbas Khosravinezhad, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Azadeh lives in a small village with her family. She wants to go to the city to visit her father, but her mother and brother won’t allow her.

Hermit  (Iran – dir Omid Mirzaee, Adult Content, Mild Violence)  Stranded in a desert, a man struggles to maintain his humanity.

Melodi  (Singapore – Michael Kam, Adult Language, Mild Violence)  An awkward, lonely boy is infatuated with his new neighbor, a young caregiver. In his own way, he reaches out to her.

Are You Volleyball?!  (Iran – dir Mohammad Bakhshi, Adult Content, Adult Language)  A group of asylum seekers are refused entry into a neighboring country. The hostility between the immigrants and soldiers escalates until a deaf-mute baby becomes a catalyst for better communication.

• STUDENT DOCUMENTARIES •

A Colourful Red (Florida State University – dir Costa Karalis, Adult Content)  Accepting a job for a high-profile client, an amateur photographer travels to Indonesia and becomes part of a plot affecting hundreds in the freelance industry.

Norman Studios  (University of North Florida – dir Ian Wilson & Andrew Willis, Parental Guidance Suggested)  The lights of Hollywood were focused on Jacksonville in the early 1900s when film studios were scattered across the city. But nowhere did they shine brighter than on Norman Studios, one of the country’s only producers of all-black films.

Jacksonville’s First Black Millionaire  (University of North Florida – dir Aleksiya Phillipov, Haidy Andrada, Chelsea Rafan and Shawn Clark, Parental Guidance Suggested)  With hard work and dedication, he turned $1.10 into $1 million. Meet Joseph Blodgett, Jacksonville’s first black millionaire.

Happier  (Florida State University – dir Grace Yao, Parental Guidance Suggested)  In our fractured, individualistic digital world, this film explores common misconceptions about happiness and delves into ways to cultivate well-being in one’s life.

Jacksonville Lynchings (University of North Florida – dir Monique Mancera, Adult Content, Mild Violence)  Exploring the buried past of lynchings in Jacksonville, FL

The Boss of The Music Industry  (University of North Florida – dir Antonio Rodriguez, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Jacksonville native, Charlie “Hoss” Singleton wrote or co-wrote over a thousand songs, including “Strangers in the Night” which reached “Number One” on the Billboard charts for Frank Sinatra, and Elvis Presley version of “Spanish Eyes” which had sales of over three million copies.

Blue Skies (Florida State University – dir Summer Schantz, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Jetta Schantz loves nothing more than ascending into the sky supported by nothing but a wicker basket. Holding 27 world and national aviation records in hot air ballooning, she was one of the only women pilots at her time. Battling the external forces of nature and people who doubted a woman could do what she did, she rose above them all to 32,000 feet.

Woman of Steel  (Florida State University – dir Chris Violette, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Ashley Young, a self-proclaimed human cyborg, recounts her childhood with a missing limb and her subsequent ambition to become a bionic role model for children.

Show Must Go On (University of North Florida – dir Ellen Cottrill, Adult Content)  The varied history of the entertainment venues that have occupied the Five Points Theater building and how it relates to the changing face of the Five Points area.

Motherland  (Florida State University – dir Colby Blackwill, Adult Content)  Residents of Pripyat and villagers of the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone recall the oral history of the Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster while they define what home means to them.

• PUBLIC DISCOURSE BLOCK •

After Parkland  (dir Beth Mendelson, Adult Content)  After Parkland sheds light on the many narratives that emerged from the Parkland community following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

For Fear of Kofi (feature documentary – US – dir Marina Petrovskaia, Adult Content, Adult Language, Violence)  “For Fear of Kofi” investigates the circumstances of one police shooting that took place on March 2, 2010, at the University of Florida.

• MOONLIGHT: FLORIDA SHORTS •

A.M.A  (Miami – dir Peter Ebanks, Adult Language, Violence A self-driving car is forced to make a moral decision.

Matched  (Jacksonville – dir Alex Willemin, Adult Content)  On a tinder date a man is looking for more than love.

Ms. Hitt  (Wellington – dir Aaron Wells, Adult Content, Adult Language, Violence)  A hit woman seeks revenge on her sister’s cheating boyfriend.

Liberty  (Miami – dir Faren Humes – Winner, best short narrative, SXSW 2019, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Alex and Milagros deal with great life upheaval as they prepare to dance at their community’s redevelopment groundbreaking ceremony.

83 Days  (Jacksonville – dir Andrew Howell, Adult Content, Adult Language)  The story of the youngest person in US history to be put to death by electric chair. In 1944, in the segregated southern town of Acolu, SC, a 14 year old negro boy, George Stinney Jr. fights for his life after being wrongly accused of the murder of 2 young white girls.

• FEATURE FILM BLOCK •

Every Time I Die  (US – dir Robi Michael, Adult Content, Adult Language, Violence)  Sam is murdered in a lake. However, his consciousness does not die. Instead, he finds himself inhabiting his friend’s body. Before he can get a grip on this surreal situation, he will need to stop his killer from murdering him again.

• CITY OF LOST CHILDREN: SHORTS BLOCK •

The Tattooed Heart  (US – dir Sheldon Wong Schwartz Adult Content, Violence)  A creative writing instructor (Jennifer Morrison, “Once Upon a Time”) at a juvenile detention center finds common ground with a troubled student (Madison Wolfe, “I Kill Giants”), yet quickly finds herself in great danger when she decides to help her.

Let Tonight Pass  (Iran – dir Hamed Ghasemi, Adult Content)  Elham is an English teacher who is from a traditional family. Tonight her suitor will come to their home with his own family. She’s been recently in a photo shoot as the model for an underground agency. Now she finds her pictures are being used for blackmail.

The Hunt (La Chasse)  (France – dir Jean-Pierre Dupuy, Graphic Language, Violence)  One day in November 1973, a father takes his 8-year-old son hunting for the first time.

BAILAORA  (Spain – dir Rubin Stein, Adult Content)  A war. A child. A dream.

Safety (US – dir Fabrice Joubert, Violence)  It’s a wind-down time after gym class for the 2nd graders when gun-fire erupts.

My Daughter Yoshiko  (US – dir Brian Blum, Parental Guidance Suggested)  With her daughter Yoshiko diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, and her husband overseas serving in the military, Saki Omura is finding it harder and harder to cope.

Don’t Draw the Curtain (Nu Trage Perdeaua)  (Romania – dir Andrei Florescu, Adult Content, Mild Violence)  The Romanian Revolution of 1989 is fast approaching and Teodor, a 10-year-old boy, must confront his overprotective family to learn more about the regime change.

• SCENES FROM A MARRIAGE: SHORTS •

INSANE LOVE – when love hides something you don’t want to see  (Italy – dir Eitan Pitigliani, Adult Content)  Alessandro is a young Italian fashion model whose life seems to have reached a dead end when, one day, walking down the streets of Rome, he bumps into Sophia, a young girl from Argentina, with whom he immediately falls desperately in love with. Loving her becomes the whole purpose of his life, to the point that it seems to take him to another world. When the story with Sophia ends, Alessandro finds himself alone, face to face with reality.

Within Reach  (US – dir Heather Fusari, Adult Content, Violence Olivia struggles to find love with her idea of ‘Mr. Right’, while her best friend reveals his love and true self from the very beginning. Over a year passes from seeing each other and memories flood back of their times together; maybe he is her true love after all. But is losing their friendship worth her confession.

Dorris 85  (US – dir Grace Philips, Parental Guidance Suggested)  While trying to maintain composure and a sense of normalcy in a tough situation, Dorris Havemeyer struggles to keep up her spirits while celebrating a significant birthday.

Swung  (US – dir Fokke Baarssen, Adult Content)  A young man moves back in with his mom after breaking up with his wife, but soon finds out his mom has a strange new hobby. It’s a poignant story of elderly independence.

After Emma  (US – dir Gabrielle Stone, Adult Content, Adult Language)  A father on trial for a tragic mistake tries to make peace with the destruction of his family.

The Fighting Road  (US – dir Walcene Metayer, Adult Content, Adult Language, Violence)   A black Union soldier trapped behind enemy lines befriends a freed woman and her son while being pursued by vicious Confederates.

A Swedish Classic (En Svensk Klassiker)  (Sweden – dir: Måns Berthas, Adult Content, Adult Language, Graphic Violence)  A woman in a tattered wedding gown wakes in the forest to the sound of a deafening car horn. She finds her husband in the crashed car nearby.

Lady Hater, Directed by Alexandra Barreto, TICKETS ON SALE NOW! 2019 Jacksonville Film Festival Returns Nov 15-17
Lady Hater, Directed by AlexandraBarreto

Lady Hater  (US – dir Alexandra Barreto, Adult Content, Adult Language)  Sam, a self proclaimed “Guy’s Girl,” walks into the wrong room, and finds herself stuck in an all-female, goddess seminar. When she tries to leave and is called out as a Lady Hater, Sam is forced to examine herself and in return asks all the women to do the same.

• FEATURE. + SHORT BLOCK •

Oldest City Underwater  (US – dir Mallory Hopkins, Parental Guidance Suggested)  St. Augustine is the oldest city in the country at over 450-years-old. This historic coastal city suffered from two major hurricanes within a year. As sea level rise approaches, the ‘Oldest City’ risks losing irreplaceable historic monuments.

Blue Tarps: This is Over Six Months After Hurricane Michael  (US – dir Carrie Hunter & Austin Hermann, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Six months after Hurricane Michael ripped through one of the poorest areas of Florida, federal and state governments have sent in little help. Middle class families struggle to

• FEATURE + SHORT BLOCK •

The Flip Side  (US – Dir William Stead, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Journey to the largest record store in the world to discover whether the vinyl record can escape its seemingly inevitable extinction.

Parallel Love: The Story of a Band Called Luxury  (US – dir Matt Hinton, Adult Content, Adult Language)  The 1990s, alt rock band, Luxury skyrocketed toward national fame, until a life-threatening tour bus wreck shook each band member to his core. Today, Luxury is led by three orthodox priests, and they’re still rocking.

• UTTERLY MACABRE: NARRATIVE SHORTS •

Your Last Day on Earth (Tu último día en la tierra)  (Spain – dir Marc Martínez Jordán, Adult Content, Graphic Language, Violence)  A Fox-dressed man breaks the spacetime limits with only one goal: to spend some time with his wife. But below this recreational act there’s a far more complex and ambitious plan.

Starlets  (US – dir Marten Carlson, Adult Language, Mild Violence)  The Lentz Triples are the biggest movie stars in the world. When it’s time to renegotiate their contract, it’s up to Biggs Tomlinson to get that ink on paper. He ventures to the mysterious Lentz household with his trusty briefcase in hand. There he meets Milly, aging film star and mother to the triplets. What follows is a game of cat and mouse as Biggs must solve the mystery of the Lentz family before it’s too late…

Papa  (US – dir Brian Peery, Adult Content, Violence)  A pioneer man becomes possessed by a supernatural being who seeks to murder his family.

Straw, Wood & Brick (Paja, madera y ladrillo)  (Spain – dir Companyia Mec Mec, Adult Content)  We all know the story of the three little pigs … Maybe now is the time for his revenge …

Over the Line  (Canada – dir Aaron Hall, Adult Language, Violence)  Despite his backseat passenger being near death, an odd young man decides they need to make a quick pit stop before heading to the hospital- to rob a gas station.

ARIA  (Italy – dir Brando De Sica, Adult Content, Mild Violence)  A group of young dancers are forced to dance inside a room full of carbon dioxide.

We Have Your Wife  (US – dir Jim Ford, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Two criminals kidnap a man’s wife. When they call with their ransom demands, they are very surprised with his response.

Mr. Sam (US- dir: Zeus Kontoyannis, Adult Content, Adult Language, Mild Violence)  Mr. Sam has many secrets; but the biggest one he’s managed to keep hidden from everyone for so long is discovered when his best friend Sandra arrives earlier than expected and catches him red-handed. Luckily for Sam, all may not be lost. Sandra has a secret of her own, which locks the two into a twisted pact.

The Replacement  (US – dir Sean Miller, Adult Language, Violence)  On election night, a janitor feels cheated out of a life he might have lived when his own clone becomes the President.

SUNDAY: NOVEMBER 17, 2019

• LOVE YOUR DOCS BLOCK •

5 Reasons Why we Need Hate Speech  (US – dir Molly Dedham, Adult Content, Adult Language)  Conventional wisdom tells us hate has no value. Hate is dangerous. Hate is harmful. And if we are to achieve social justice, we must put a stop to hate speech. Silence it by any means necessary. But, what if the fight to stop hate speech is more harmful than the speech itself?

Saving Florida’s Sparrow  (US – dir Justin Grubb, Parental Guidance Suggested)  The Florida grasshopper sparrow now numbers less than 100 in the wild. White Oak, US fish and Wildlife, the Florida Fish, Wildlife Conservation Commission and Tall Timbers are working tirelessly to save it from extinction.

Daniel Nasca: The Lion Within  (US – dir Daniel Balandra, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Daniel Nasca, an undefeated mixed martial arts fighter born with cerebral palsy, trains for a grappling tournament to showcase his abilities to compete with the best.

Hoan Alone: Personal Stories From the Bridge  (US – dir Aaron Johnson, Adult Content)  Milwaukee’s Daniel Hoan Memorial Bridge is the crown over Summerfest and has become one of the city’s most recognizable landmarks. But it’s also a popular site for suicides. This animated documentary explores the issues of the bridge and suicide through three intimate interviews.

The Colorblind Artist  (US – dir Carlo Caldana, Parental Guidance Suggested)   Artist Kevin Richard Brown narrates this inspiring story about his quest to overcome color-blindness and the technique he uses to paint landscapes in full colors.

A Fresh Perspective  (US – dir Aaron Hosé, Adult Content)  The story of three African-Americans in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, who create the nation’s first-ever black beer festival, a historic event aiming to diversify the industry while promoting a new narrative in craft beer.

Finding Jack (W poszukiwaniu Jacka) (Poland – dir Tomasz Wiśniewski, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Before the war, in a little town in Poland, a newborn baby was left in a pigsty belonging to a single Jewish woman. The baby came with a note stating: “Unbaptized”. He is to be christened and named Jack.” The Jewess brought the baby up as her own, but in the spirit of Catholicism.

Brick in the Wall  (US – dir Bob Bean, Parental Guidance Suggested)  This is the story of Joshua Frase. His life. His legacy. The ripples of his courage have spread wide. What hope do we cling to in the darkest of waters?

Babli  (UK / Pakistan – Director: Aneel Ahmad, Adult Content)  Babli is a short documentary following the life of a middle-aged man suffering from schizophrenia and chronic depression.

The Guy: The Brian Donahue Story  (US – dir E.J. McLeavey-Fisher, Adult Content, Adult Language, Violence)  Stuntman… Actor… UPS employee… Former WWF wrestler… Disney World performer… and NFL nose tackle. Brian Donahue has seemingly done it all. Yet he’s still searching for that elusive Hollywood spotlight.

• FEATURE FILM BLOCK •

Book Week  (Australia – dir Heath Davis – 96min, Adult Content, Adult Language)  Book Week is a shaggy dark comedy about a disgraced novelist turned English teacher trying to find redemption.

PIXALATED: ANIMATION SHORTS//

Flicker (US – dir Brendan Arena, General Audiences)  Flicker is a young matchstick who finally witnesses what happens to matches outside the box. Upon seeing his friend go up in flames, Flicker fears for his life as he is pulled out of his home. He escapes but must choose to survive or to sacrifice himself for his brother.

Sound of Hell  (US – dir Amanda Jow & Beatrice Li, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Satan attempts to take advantage of a boy trying to pass his recorder test.

CycLove (چرخ‍‌عشق) (Iran – dir Seyed Emad Karimifard, Adult Content)  A young boy is struggling to come back to his mistress. But at the end of this way, he is incapacitated and tired, then looking at his past created for itself. In the end, the girl returns.

Exposed  (US / Taiwan – dir Ya-Lin Yu, General Audiences)  Joyce, a girl who lost her hair due to cancer is afraid of facing her friend because of her appearance. So, her imaginary wig monster friend tries to help her out.

Bird  (UK – dir Wu-Ching Chang, Parental Guidance Suggested)  A girl suffers from great discomfort without warning, like a disaster. When panic is accompanied by flapping-wing, a chaotic, dissociated journey of her unconsciousness is about to begin.

Balance  (Singapore / Indonesia – dir Raymond Limantara Sutisna, Parental Guidance Suggested)  A boy and a girl fight for painting space, both refusing to give in until the mess they create goes out of control.

Calls for Archie  (US – dir Zach Christy, Parental Guidance Suggested)  A man gets mysterious calls for years and tries to understand why.

Repeat  (UK – dir Steven Haggie, Parental Guidance Suggested)  This animation represents the spiral into depression, isolation, routine and the need to escape. It examines modern society, particularly with regard to the unanticipated consequences of new technologies.

iRony  (Australia / Japan / Korea / Malaysia – dir Radheya Jegatheva, Parental Guidance Suggested)  A film that explores the relationship between man and technology…told from the perspective of a phone.

Two Bottles  (US – dir Rob Shaw, Adult Content)  Bert has a Two Bottle system to read other people’s thoughts. The introvert enters Chelton Hotel with the goal of spying on a man named Gregor. But, when his mark turns the tables on him, Bert is pulled into a hole of empathy and insanity.

Is That What Sex is?  (US – dir Sarah Pender, Parental Guidance Suggested)  When 6-year-old Emily asks the adults in her life where babies come from she’s given some interesting answers. But from bed springs to delivery, adults are letting on more than they know. Based on true lies.

Ext  (Canada – dir Adrian Bobb, Adult Content, Violence)  In the snow-covered ruins of 24th century Toronto, AEGIS, a humanoid war machine, leads a team of five robot-bound digital-humans into the real world (aka the “E-X-T”) to retake an enemy-occupied server installation vital to the survival of their digital homeworld.

Framed  (Italy – Director: Marco Jemolo, Adult Content)  A noir animated short-film, exploring alienation within society.

• SALUTE YOUR STUDENTS SHORTS •

Interior Day, Exterior Night  (Canada – dir Othello Nogueira, Parental Guidance Suggested)  It is not an ordinary day.

Battle of the Air Bands  (Harrison School for the Arts, FL – dir Joshua Bowen, Parental Guidance Suggested)  A boy goes through the battle of his life to finally join a band.

Lost in a Dream  (Douglas Anderson School of the Arts, FL – dir Elizabeth Arceneaux, Parental Guidance Suggested)

The Can  (Russia – dir Alexey Protsenko, Parental Guidance Suggested)  A young guy walking down the street throws an empty soda can in the box and misses. After that, the can begins to pursue him.

Recruit (UK – dir Harry Statham, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Looking to make friends and connect, Chloe has a choice to make.

Colors Run  (Travis High School, TX – dir Olivia Carter, Adult Content)  Colors Run follows the unlikely friendship between a broken old soul and a young imaginative girl. She dreams of an imaginary circus while he just wants out of this town to start a new. They never knew their paths would cross, much less they would save each other’s lives.

Still Life  (Greece – dir Iordanis Theodosiadis, Parental Guidance Suggested)  An old-fashioned painter tries to avoid modern influences at any cost, only to create his most progressive artwork ever.

Better Off  (New Trier High School, IL – dir Jules Brown, Parental Guidance Suggested)

Hard Shadow  (Iran – dir Neda Khanifar, Adult Content)

Shaken  (Florida State University – dir Chayse Banks, Adult Content)  Sarah, suffering from Postpartum Psychosis, must face her hallucinations and allow herself to begin the process of self-forgiveness in the wake of an unforgivable act.

Mariposas (New York University – dir Adrian Carey, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Set in a universe of magical realism, a boastful father prattles on superficially about his daughter to another parent in the school pick up line, but is unable to perceive her when it matters most.

Farewell Athens (Adieu Athènes)  (France – dir Adèle Shaykhulova, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Otto’s parents get divorced and this is the last day to empty their apartment. Otto slips away in the early morning, perhaps to delay this moment a little bit more.

What we Had  (Florida State University – dir Aaron Brooks, Parental Guidance Suggested, Mild Violence)  Damon, a hopeless romantic reunites with his first love, Theo, who’s visiting home during a college semester break. Hoping to rekindle the old flame, Damon soon learns that things have changed between them, and he must find the courage to face the truth of their new relationship.

Anita  (Florida State University – dir Ryan Joiner, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Anita must find a way to overcome the abusive powers that be.

My Friend Frank  (UK – dir Joel Caborn, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Charlie loves his mum but she doesn’t look after him properly; sometimes she hurts him. Charlie doesn’t have friends at school but since inheriting a games console, he does online. His friends online don’t bully him. Frank helps Charlie play the games better and shows him how to win. Frank is Charlie’s best friend, but is he who he says he is?

Doll it Up  (Florida State University – dir Yalan Hu, Adult Content)  Feeling his marriage with Natalie, a sex doll he has been with for three years, has grown stale, Gunther decides to purchase a new doll, Dorri, that he adores and esteems as “true love.” However, the honeymoon period is always ephemeral. When he finds out his new wife isn’t as innocent as she looks, Gunther is faced with the fact that he might have lost both of them.

Petunia  (Florida State University – dir James Leming, Adult Content, Adult Language)  Petunia, a 20-something ex-hit-girl sharpshooter, is unwillingly dragged into the neon-soaked arcade halls of the violent Yakuza underbelly when her hitman father Charlie gets in bad with its leader.

• EXIT 12 + LEAVE THE BUS THROUGH THE BROKEN WINDOW/ CLOSING •

Exit 12 (US – Director: Mohammad Gorjestani, Winner, best short documentary at SXSW 2019, Adult Content)  After two tours in Fallujah in the Iraq War, US Marine Roman Baca came home a different person. His experience ravaged him with depression, anxiety and anger issues. He decided to return to ballet as a way to cope.

Leave the Bus Through the Broken Window (US / China- Director: Andrew Hevia, official selection at SXSW, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Upon realizing that the objective survey he intended to make about Art Basel Hong Kong – now the leading international art market in Asia – isn’t going according to plan, Andrew Hevia (co-producer of Academy Award Winner Moonlight) instead creates a personal and comedic study of loneliness, culture shock and the contemporary art world.

MONDAY: NOVEMBER 18, 2019

Teardrop Goodbye with Mandatory Directorial Commentary from Remy Von Trout  (95min – dir. Franklin Ritch (out of competition, Adult Content, Adult Language)  Jacksonville Film Festival proudly presents local filmmaker, Franklin Ritch’s debut feature film, Teardrop Goodbye with Mandatory Directorial Commentary from Remy Vont Trout. A pretentious filmmaker suffers a very dramatic mental breakdown while recording the director commentary for his latest feature film. What starts as intriguing insight into the shady production process devolves into a darkly humorous hostage situation.

TUESDAY: NOVEMBER 19, 2019

Blue Skies  (Florida State University – dir Summer Schantz, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Jetta Schantz loves nothing more than ascending into the sky supported by nothing but a wicker basket. Holding 27 world and national aviation records in hot air ballooning, she was one of the only women pilots at her time. Battling the external forces of nature and people who doubted a woman could do what she did, she rose above them all to 32,000 feet.

Fly Like a Girl (US – dir Katie McEntire Wiatt, Parental Guidance Suggested)  Fly Like a Girl is a movement of young girls and women relentlessly pursuing their passion for aviation, which is a field currently dominated by men. Hearing first-hand stories from girls and women who dared to aim higher. From a lego-loving young girl who includes female pilots in her toy airplanes, to a courageous woman who helped lead shuttle missions to space, Fly Like a Girl shows us that women are in charge of their own destiny.

WEDNESDAY: NOVEMBER 20, 2019

Jacksonville Film Festival and Jacksonville Film Bar proudly present a Jacksonville Short Films  A collection of short, genre-bending short films all written, directed and produced by local filmmakers. This is the third and final showcase of the year. Many films from previous showcases have gone on to festival runs. Come see the films that will rebirth the Jacksonville film industry.

The Jacksonville Film Festival will take place at the San Marco Theatre.

 

About Liza Mitchell

october, 2021

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