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CONTACT: Chandra Knotts, Deputy Press Director chandra@woodstockfilmfestival.com or 845-679-4265
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• Click here for full online schedule with ticket info (available September 12)
• Click here for pre-fest PDF (6mb download available September 3)


14th ANNUAL WFF UNVEILS 2013 BEST INDEPENDENT FILMS IN COMPETITION

OUTSTANDING DOCS AND NARRATIVES HIGHLIGHT FESTIVAL'S 14TH EDITION

Woodstock, NY (Sept. 3, 2013)The Woodstock Film Festival, always on the cutting edge of contemporary filmmaking, annually dedicates itself to showcasing some of the best independent films for cinephiles near and far. A key part of the festival's lineup is the official selection of films in competition. Below is the list of films in competition in both feature narrative and feature documentary categories as well as the competition's jurors, consisting of top industry professionals and filmmakers.

Join us at the Maverick Awards Gala on Saturday, October 5 at Backstage Studio Productions in Kingston, NY, where the jury will announce all the winners in front of over 500 independent filmmakers, industry professionals and guests in attendance. Renowned filmmakers Peter Bogdanovich (this year's Maverick Lifetime Achievement recipient) and Mira Nair (Meera Gandhi Giving Back Award recipient) will be on hand among the many recipients to be honored at the event.

Official Jury 2013 to include...
Feature Documentary: Joe Berlinger, Liz Garbus, and Cynthia Kane
Editing, Documentary: Sabine Hoffman, Fiona Otway and Michael Levine

Feature Narrative: Richard Abramowitz, Nancy Schafer and Nancy Savoca
Editing, Narrative: Sabine Hoffman, Affonso Goncalves, and Kate Sanford

Cinematography: Haskell Wexler

Short Film: Shawn Christensen, Jonathan Gray and Lydia Dean Pilcher
Student Short Film: Isil Bagdadi, Amy Devra Gossels and Lori Singer
Short Documentary: Lisa Gossels, Leon Gast and Paul Rachman

Animation: Signe Baumane and Bill Plympton
 
COMPETITION
DOCUMENTARY FEATURES IN COMPETITION
Including Editing Awards

 

AMERICAN COMMUNE
Directed by Nadine Mundo and Rena Mundo Croshere
East Coast Premiere

Rena and Nadine, two documentarian sisters, leave their jobs in reality television to visit their secret rural upbringings at The Farm, America's largest commune. The film cuts between past and present as the filmmakers explore what is left of their alternative childhood, bridging gaps between their adult metropolitan lifestyles and their off-the-grid rearing. American Commune reveals the rise and fall of The Farm, a 1970s commune that created what appeared to be the ideal self-sufficient community. Members shared everything from child rearing and communal households, to currency, clothing and food. Through unapologetic storytelling and a hint of nostalgia, the Mundo sisters tap into the alternate universe of their pasts and bring to light the undying legacy of true community.
Screening Fri. 10/4 Bearsville Theater Woodstock 2:30pm and Sun. 10/14 Orpheum Theater Saugerties 1pm
.

Informant

AMERICAN REVOLUTIONARY: THE EVOLUTION OF GRACE LEE BOGGS
Directed by Grace Lee
New York Premiere

What constitutes revolution? 98-year old writer and radical activist Grace Lee Boggs has no hesitations when it comes to changing the world, one conversation at a time.
Filmmaker Grace Lee initially sought out Grace Lee Boggs due to their shared name but instead found a breath of rebellious inspiration in Boggs that continues to motivate nonviolent philosophies of civil rights growth, revolution and evolution. Once a 1960s militant, the Detroit-based activist Boggs continues to challenge expectations through her lifelong devotion to the African American movement and fight for individual freedoms. "The time has come for a new dream," Boggs says, relying on the ever-evolving artistry of conversation to fuel the fire of revolution. American Revolutionary is a story of growth: of Boggs' lifetime commitment to activism, of filmmaker Grace Lee, and of the viewer as they align with Boggs' philosophy of positivity and change.
Screening Fri. 10/4 Upstate Films Woodstock 11:30am and Sat. 10/5 Upstate Films Rhinebeck 1:45pm.

Mechanical Bride

THE GREAT CHICKEN WING HUNT
Directed by Matt Reynolds
New York Premiere

Chicken Wings have become a staple of the American culinary experience, but filmmaker, journalist and upstate New Yorker Matt Reynolds takes finding the best wing to an entirely new level. Abandoning his successful career as an overseas reporter Matt returns to the States to embark on a journey across New York State to find the world's best chicken wing accompanied by his confused Czech girlfriend, Lucie. In an odyssey covering over 2500 miles, Matt and his cabal of chicken wing obsessed friends consume nearly 300 varieties of wings in two weeks. Eventually Matt must decide what is greater: his love for wings or Lucie. The Great Chicken Wing Hunt is more than a foodie's delight; it's three parts gastronomic competition, two parts oddball comedy and one part love story.
Screening Fri. 10/4 Orpheum Theatre Saugerties 7pm and Sat. 10/5 Upstate Films Woodstock 2pm.

Oma & Bella

MAGICAL UNIVERSE
Directed by Jeremy Workman
New York Premiere

Step into the unique and thought-provoking world of lifetime outsider artist Al Carbee, an 88-year old eccentric who spends his days creating outlandish works of art featuring Barbie Dolls. Filmmaker Jeremy Workman has spent over a decade of friendship with Carbee compiling extensive footage and memories to provide audiences with a look into the magical universe of Carbee's bizarre creative force.
What began as a simple trip to Maine with his girlfriend became, over time, a life-changing partnership between Workman and Carbee that culminates in this extraordinary bio-pic, a glimpse of an otherwise unknown artist's lifelong body of work. Workman is able to come full-circle in this documentary and brings his audience along with him, revealing the astoundingly powerful role of companionship and creativity in the human mind while emphasizing the importance of mutual inspiration. Magical Universe provides a priceless look at the immeasurable wonder of creative drive and inspiration.
Screening Sat. 10/5 Upstate Films Woodstock 11:45am and Sun. 10/6 Rosendale Theater 12pm
.

Shepard & Dark

THE MANOR
Directed by Shawney Cohen
U.S. Premiere

For his bar mitzvah, filmmaker Shawney Cohen asked for a set of hockey pads. His father bought him a lap dance instead. Since the family owns a strip club, he surely got a discount.
In the tradition of Grey Gardens, The Manor is an unblinking yet compassionate portrait of a family and its demons. Father Roger weighs almost 400 pounds. Mother Brenda weighs only 85 pounds. Brother Sammy revels in the strip club culture. Filmmaker Shawney wants to try and figure out where his family lost its way...and what, if anything, they can do about it. The Cohen's lifestyles are financed by the business of sex steeped with alcohol and drugs. They are corroded by the same forces that sustain them. Is change possible?
Always honest, and at times sad, funny and surreal, The Manor depicts a unique family that is, somehow, just like the rest of us.
Screening Sat 10/5 Upstate Films Rhinebeck 4:45pm and Sun. 10/6 Upstate Films Woodstock 5pm.

Virgin Tales

MEDORA
Directed by Andrew Cohn and Davy Rothbart
New York Premiere

In a small town that seems to have been forgotten, directors Andrew Cohn and Davy Rothbart explore the convoluted lives of the Medora Hornets varsity basketball team. The dynamic of the run down, struggling town of Medora, Indiana directly reflects the disadvantage that their high school basketball team faces each year. The Medora Hornets, a small force stemming from a school of only 72 students, often find themselves competing against consolidated schools up to twenty times their size.
A once flourishing community teeming with employment opportunities, the termination of surrounding factories and the flooding of farms has stripped Medora of almost all-economic value. The film provides insight into the broken, conflicted homes that pervade the dwindling town and the eminent death of small-town America. The intimate relationship that forms between the players and the audience creates a moving and exciting documentary as we follow Medora's bittersweet basketball season as they look to create their own Hoosier dreams.
Screening Thurs. 10/4 Woodstock Playhouse 12pm and Sat. 10/5 Rosendale Theater 12:40pm.

Words of Witness

PURGATORIO
Directed by Rodrigo Reyes
East Coast Premiere

A line in the sand is drawn in Purgatorio, where only the desperate and courageous dare cross. Documentary director Rodrigo Reyes questions the role of humanity on planet earth and how the divisions we've created between one another have set in motion a millennium of adversities.
Fast forward to present day, where the border between the United States and Mexico echoes the mistakes of generations past as immigrants are taking great pains to find a better life north of the Rio Grande. They will endure heat exhaustion, dehydration, sexual assault and much worse. All of this to escape a world from where even the most devout must work from dawn until dusk under the baking sun in order to survive. Even then, the fatal whims of a stray bullet can still threaten to cut short a life of perdition, and deliver them to whatever waits beyond.
Screening Fri 10/4 Rosendale Theater 3:30pm and Sun. 10/6 Bearsville Theater Woodstock 2:15pm.

Words of Witness

TOWN HALL
Directed by Sierra Pettengill and Jamila Wignot
New York Premiere

Town Hall casts an unflinching eye at Katy and John, two Tea Party activists from the battleground state of Pennsylvania during the 2012 Presidential election, who believe America's salvation lies in a return to true conservative values.
In Katy, we see a political novice rocketed to media stardom after a sensational confrontation at a town hall meeting with her senator. A young stay-at-home mom turned Tea Party spokesperson, she is gifted a new identity, steeled by the voices of conservative media.
For John, a retired former businessman and lifelong Republican, the America he knows is slipping away. Heading up a local Tea Party group is his last, best chance at stanching the changes he is witnessing all around him.
More than a political treatise, Town Hall immerses the viewer in Katy and John's world, painting a portrait of the fears of those who believe they will be left behind by a nation's transition.
Screening Fri. 10/4 Upstate Films Woodstock 2pm and Sat. 10/5 Orpheum Theater Saugerties 3:45pm.

Words of Witness

 

COMPETITION
NARRATIVE FEATURES IN COMPETITION
Including Editing Awards

 

DOOMSDAYS
Directed by Eddie Mullins

U.S. Premiere

Eddie Mullins takes living off of the grid to a whole new level with Doomsdays, a self-proclaimed "pre-apocalyptic comedy" starring Justin Rice and Leo Fitzpatrick as low-budget vandals with little regard for the law. Dirty Fred and Bruho are a tag team of criminal house-hoppers who find themselves with more than they bargained for when a disenchanted teenager and indignant young woman join them in their shenanigans. The pair of newcomers unintentionally reveal to Fred and Bruho that the feeling of family doesn't necessitate a home and the feeling of home doesn't necessitate settling, but that both can be found within the company you keep.
Freeloading through high-end Catskills vacation homes forces the group to acknowledge feelings and morals that they otherwise would have never recognized. Perhaps most importantly, the pair come to recognize that isolating themselves from the death-grip of society does little in the face of compassion and companionship, two side-products of our troubled world that are well worth keeping.
Screening Thurs. 10/3 Rosendale Theater 7pm and Fri. 10/4 Woodstock Playhouse 9:30pm.

California Solo

THE FORGOTTEN KINGDOM
Directed by Andrew Mudge
New York Premiere


Atang has been disconnected from his father for years after being uprooted from his hometown of Lesotho as a child. Currently living in the city of Johannesburg, South Africa, Atang is misguided and full of resentment. News of his father's death comes with a predetermined trip to Lesotho for his burial. Reluctantly, Atang embarks on the visit to his ancestral land where he forms an unexpected connection with his childhood friend, Dineo.
Director Andrew Mudge wonderfully portrays the mystery and spirit of the land as audiences accompany Atang on his journeys. Atang's initial trek to bury his deceased father evolves into a voyage to reconnect with Dineo, her stubborn, traditional father and terminally ill sister. Powerful performances delivered by each cast member paired with exceptional cinematography makes
The Forgotten Kingdom a compelling story that leaves the audience emotionally moved and wanting more.
Screening Thurs. 10/4 Upstate Films Rhinebeck 6pm and Sun. 10/6 Woodstock Playhouse 1:30pm.


HERE COMES THE NIGHT
Directed by Peter Kline and Pete Shanel
World Premiere

Leo and Nick, college friends now estranged, meet again after the funeral of their friend James. Seemingly polar opposites, straight laced east-coast family man Leo and flakey would-be Hollywood movie producer Nick embark on a series of outrageous nocturnal adventures. With a knowing nod to the worst of L.A. stereotypes, Nick pulls Leo along on what becomes an homage to debauchery. Ably assisted by Trish and Claire, a pair of drug-loving young beauties they meet along the way and hook up with for a while, Leo and Nick's journey is both poignant and hilarious. With a wealth of unexpected and thoroughly engaging plot twists and turns, this is one of those rare films that strikes just the right balance between comedy and pathos. Pitch perfect casting, snappy dialogue, sly observations, seamless editing and an evocative score make this a "must see" movie. Sweet, gentle, hilarious and thought provoking.
Screening Fri. 10/4 Orpheum Theater Saugerties 9:20pm and Sun. 10/6 Bearsville Theater Woodstock 7:15pm.

Electrick Children

ORENTHAL: THE MUSICAL
Directed by Jeff Rosenberg
New York Premiere

O.J. Simpson may be one of the most recognizable and infamous names of the last 20 years. So when overly eccentric theatre artist Eugene Oliver (Jordan Kenneth Kamp) decides to make Mr. Simpson the subject of his next musical, the results are truly something spectacular. Orenthal: The Musical, the hilarious new film from director Jeff Rosenberg, captures, in outstanding mockumentary style, the process of developing the greatest musical regarding a murder trial ever to be produced. With the help of some loyal childhood friends, a handful of local actors, and a group of producers from a biblical theater company, can Eugene and company overcome the obstacles they face and achieve their goal in creating the next great American musical? Orenthal, reminiscent of the work of Christopher Guest, is sure to have you laughing from Act I.
Screening Fri. 10/4 Bearsville Theater Woodstock 7pm and Sat. 10/5 Rosendale Theater 5pm.

Exit Elena

THE RETRIEVAL
Directed by Chris Eska
East Coast Premiere

2007 WFF Alum and Maverick Award winner for Best Narrative Feature (August Evening) returns with a powerful period drama set on the outskirts of the Civil War. Teenage Will is a young African-American bounty hunter. Moral boundaries are crossed as Will, along with his uncle Marcus work for a gang recapturing runaway slaves. The two are contracted to cross Union lines and bring back freed slave and accused murderer Nate in an astounding performance by Tishuan Scott. Yasu Tanida's beautiful cinematography turns the Texas landscapes into another essential character. Eska, meanwhile patiently crafts a brilliantly acted tour de force that foists tough ethical questions upon the viewer.
Screening Fri. 10/4 Upstate Films Woodstock 9:30pm and Sat. 10/5 Upstate Films Rhinebeck 4pm.

First Winter

WINTER IN THE BLOOD
Directed by Alex and Andrew Smith
East Coast Premiere

Virgil First Raise wakes in a ditch on the plains of Montana, battered and hung-over. His wife has left him and taken his beloved rifle.
Virgil embarks on a wild and darkly comic odyssey fueled by alcohol to retrieve the rifle. Ultimately, he finds himself. Adapted from the celebrated novel of the same name, Winter in the Blood is largely a visualization of internal memories and thoughts. The audience is never quite sure what is real and what isn't because Virgil isn't so sure either.
Filmed on location in Montana, with gorgeous cinematography and a haunting and evocative score, this is a melancholic and surreal depiction of a distraught hero trying to make peace with his past and his identity.
Screening Fri. 10/4 Upstate Films Woodstock 4:15pm and Sun. 10/6 Rosendale Theater 5:15pm.

I am Not a Hipster


competition
HASKELL WEXLER AWARD FOR BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

 

THE FORGOTTEN KINGDOM
Directed by Andrew Mudge
New York Premiere


Atang has been disconnected from his father for years after being uprooted from his hometown of Lesotho as a child. Currently living in the city of Johannesburg, South Africa, Atang is misguided and full of resentment. News of his father's death comes with a predetermined trip to Lesotho for his burial. Reluctantly, Atang embarks on the visit to his ancestral land where he forms an unexpected connection with his childhood friend, Dineo.
Director Andrew Mudge wonderfully portrays the mystery and spirit of the land as audiences accompany Atang on his journeys. Atang's initial trek to bury his deceased father evolves into a voyage to reconnect with Dineo, her stubborn, traditional father and terminally ill sister. Powerful performances delivered by each cast member paired with exceptional cinematography makes
The Forgotten Kingdom a compelling story that leaves the audience emotionally moved and wanting more.
Screening Thurs. 10/4 Upstate Films Rhinebeck 6pm and Sun. 10/6 Woodstock Playhouse 1:30pm.


IT FELT LIKE LOVE
Directed by Eliza Hittman


During an uneventful summer on the outskirts of Brooklyn, Lila, a lonely fourteen-year-old from Gravesend, turns her attentions to Sammy, an older thug she sees at Rockaway beach. Wanting something to brag about, she weaves a story about him and becomes fixated on seeing it realized. Deluded and awkward in her romantic pursuit, she soon finds herself in a dangerously vulnerable situation.
Screening Thurs. 10/3 Bearsville Theater Woodstock 5pm and Sat. 10/5 Upstate Films Rhinebeck 7pm.


PURGATORIO
Directed by Rodrigo Reyes
East Coast Premiere

A line in the sand is drawn in Purgatorio, where only the desperate and courageous dare cross. Documentary director Rodrigo Reyes questions the role of humanity on planet earth and how the divisions we've created between one another have set in motion a millennium of adversities.
Fast forward to present day, where the border between the United States and Mexico echoes the mistakes of generations past as immigrants are taking great pains to find a better life north of the Rio Grande. They will endure heat exhaustion, dehydration, sexual assault and much worse. All of this to escape a world from where even the most devout must work from dawn until dusk under the baking sun in order to survive. Even then, the fatal whims of a stray bullet can still threaten to cut short a life of perdition, and deliver them to whatever waits beyond.
Screening Fri 10/4 Upstate Films Rhinebeck 3:30pm and Sun. 10/6 Bearsville Theater Woodstock 2:15pm.


THE RETRIEVAL
Directed by Chris Eska
East Coast Premiere

2007 WFF Alum and Maverick Award winner for Best Narrative Feature (August Evening) returns with a powerful period drama set on the outskirts of the Civil War. Teenage Will is a young African-American bounty hunter. Moral boundaries are crossed as Will, along with his uncle Marcus work for a gang recapturing runaway slaves. The two are contracted to cross Union lines and bring back freed slave and accused murderer Nate in an astounding performance by Tishuan Scott. Yasu Tanida's beautiful cinematography turns the Texas landscapes into another essential character. Eska, meanwhile patiently crafts a brilliantly acted tour de force that foists tough ethical questions upon the viewer.
Screening Fri. 10/4 Upstate Films Woodstock 9:30pm and Sat. 10/5 Upstate Films Rhinebeck 4pm.


Our official 2013 Award Sponsors include FilmsWeLike, Gigantic Pictures, The Meera Gandhi Giving Back Foundation, Lowel Lights, Panavision, Tangerine Entertainment and Technicolor.

Check out our OFFICIAL LINE-UP when it is released on September 3 along with upcoming announcements about our 2013 event!

 


Click here for full online schedule with ticket info (available September 12)
Click here for pre-fest PDF(6mb download available September 2)


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About the Woodstock Film Festival:
Hailed by Indiewire as "A true American Maverick Among Fests" and praised by actor Ethan Hawke as "among the finest of a dying breed: a festival that isn't trying to sell you anything, but simply and beautifully celebrating the art & craft of filmmaking", the Woodstock Film Festival premiers exceptional films, hosts the most talented emerging and established professionals in the movie industry; presents A-list concerts, panels and parties, and creates stimulating, innovative programming year-round.

The Woodstock Film Festival is a non-profit, 501c3 with a mission to present an annual program and year-round schedule of film, music and art-related activities that promote artists, culture, inspired learning and diversity.

The Woodstock Film Festival will celebrate its 14th Annual Festival October 2-6, 2013, with an extraordinary line-up of fiercely independent films, panels, concerts and special events in Woodstock and the neighboring towns of Rhinebeck, Kingston, Rosendale and Saugerties.

2013 Sponsors





 

Gold Sponsors

 



Silver Sponsors

Superstar Sponsors
bmi
metro wdst

Award Sponsors
bluesky filmwelike
gigantic giving back
lowel panavision

Foundation and State Support
nysca
 
 

P.O Box 1406, Woodstock, NY 12498 - (845) 679-4265
info@woodstockfilmfestival.com - www.woodstockfilmfestival.com