Offering international grandeur in an intimate setting.
The Mendocino Film Festival brings the prestige of independent film to venues throughout Mendocino County while retaining the friendly small-town atmosphere that distinguishes it on the festival circuit. The yearly lineup combines stylish sophistication with quirky Mendocino flair, all with the dramatic natural beauty of the region’s unique terrain as a backdrop.
From the redwoods of Willits to the rolling hills of Philo and the dramatic headlands of Mendocino Village, Mendocino scenery is unforgettable.
The 2015 program screens in five cities around Mendocino: Philo (Cinema in the Vineyards), Mendocino Village, Willits (Seabiscuit Legacy Film Series), Fort Bragg, and Point Arena, and concludes in the Festival Tent in Mendocino Village on Sunday, May 31, at 5:30 pm with Reel Mendo, a collection of films from Mendocino’s talented local filmmakers.
It is through innovative community partnerships, the support of sponsors and local businesses, generous donations from our Members, and the hard work of a dedicated group of volunteers that the Festival is able to present such a strong program year after year. To all the people who help make the Festival a success, our deepest thanks!
For full information and to buy tickets to screenings and events, visit www.MendocinoFilmFestival.org or call 707-937-0171. Tenth Anniversary program, available online at www.MendocinoFilmFestival.org and in print at the Mendocino Film Festival office and locations around Mendocino and Northern California.
The Mendocino Film Festival is now a two-weekend festival featuring film screenings and special events around the county May 22 – 31, 2015.
“We look forward to marking this momentous occasion with the community and with attendees and filmmakers from around the globe,” says Mendocino Film Festival Executive Director Michael Fox. “We are excited to welcome everyone to the festivities in May.”
Highlights of the Tenth Anniversary Mendocino Film Festival include: Academy Award® Nominees Finding Vivian Maier and Song of the Sea and Academy Award® Winner Ida; local film Of the Sea; music documentaries Keep On Keepin’ On, Lady Be Good, and Take Me to the River; and, a diverse selection of award-winning independent features, ranging from “Iranian feminist vampire western” A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night to political documentary Compared to What: The Improbable Journey of Barney Frank.
The Mendocino Film Festival will also offer a variety of special programs, including A Tribute to Albert Maysles, 3 Still Standing: Live on Stage, and the Festival Favorites Short Films Program, featuring the best of the past ten years of the Festival’s beloved Short Films Program.
Tickets go on sale to the public on Friday, May 1, and will be available at the Mendocino Film Festival Box Office and online.
The Box Office will be open from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm Thursday through Tuesday (closed Wednesdays) May 1 - May 26 at the Mendocino Film Festival office on Ukiah St. in Mendocino Village. Beginning May 27 and continuing throughout the Festival, tickets will be available at Festival HQ at Oddfellows every day from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.
Unless otherwise noted, all screenings are $11 in advance, $12 at the door
Cinema in the Vineyards Program (Philo, May 22 – 24) Occupy the Farm Saturday, May 23, 12:00 pm, Balo Vineyards
Directed by Todd Darling. 200 farmers occupy a last solitary piece of farmland in California’s urban East Bay, plant 15,000 seedlings to feed the community, and disrupt plans to build a shopping mall, revealing a new strategy for activism.
Saturday, May 23, 5:00 pm • Balo Vineyards
Directed by Julia Patricia Perez. Abandoning butter and bouillabaisse for traditional cuisine, Chef Gaston Acurio began serving the dishes of his homeland and, in the process, catapulted Peruvian cuisine to international prominence and changed a nation.
A Year in Champagne
Sunday, May 24, 5:00 pm • Balo Vineyards
Directed by David Kennard. Discover the intoxicating story behind the world’s most famous wine with this rare glimpse behind the scenes into the real Champagne, from small independent winemakers like Champagne Saint-Chamant to the illustrious houses of Gosset and Bollinger.
3 Still Standing
Friday, May 29, 8:00 pm • Crown Hall Saturday, May 30, 10:00 am, Coast Cinemas, Fort Bragg
Directed by Robert Campos and Donna LoCicero. Follow Will Durst, Larry "Bubbles" Brown, and Johnny Steele on a 30-year journey that is both hilarious and moving, through comedy's boom and bust, and into their current scramble to survive as artists. Featuring interviews with Dana Carvey, Paula Poundstone, Rob Schneider, and Robin Williams.
3 Still Standing: Live On Stage
Saturday, May 30, 8 :00 pm • Festival Tent, $20 admission
SPECIAL LIVE PERFORMANCE Comedians Will Durst, Larry “Bubbles” Brown, and Johnny Steele
Join us for a night of laughter, as the legendary Will Durst, Larry “Bubbles” Brown, and Johnny Steele take to the stage. See the comedians perform live as they riff on clips from 3 Still
Standing, weaving together film and stand-up comedy for a hilarious and memorable journey into the lives of three gifted comedians. Local comedian Doug Nunn hosts this one-night-only event.
The Age of Love
Saturday, May 30, 12:30 pm • Matheson Sunday, May 31, 10:00 am • Coast Cinemas, Fort Bragg
Directed by Steve Loring. The announcement of a first-of-its-kind Speed Dating event exclusively for 70- to 90- year-olds spurs a diverse group of seniors to take stock of aging bodies and still-hopeful hearts.
Friday, May 29, 12:30 pm • Crown Hall
Directed by Michael Rossato-Bennett. An exploration of music's ability to combat memory loss and restore a sense of self to those suffering from dementia, revealing the uniquely human connection we find in music. Features illuminating interviews with experts, including Oliver Sacks and Bobby McFerrin.
Saturday, May 30, 10:00 am • Matheson
Directed by Felicia Lowe. Filmmaker Felicia Lowe’s deeply personal documentary explores the legacy of persecution in the United States and the impact of assimilation, secrecy, and regret on the many immigrants who came to America only to discover that the American Dream had a high price.
Compared to What: The Improbable Journey of Barney Frank
Saturday, May 30, 3:00 pm • Festival Tent
Directed by Sheila Canavan and Michael Chandler. On the verge of his retirement, Barney Frank, the quick-witted, cantankerous, and first openly gay Congressman in the United States, reflects on his 40 years in office and the role his own homosexuality played in his campaigns for social justice.
Saturday, May 30, 12:30 pm • Crown Hall
Directed by Volker Schlöndorff. In 1944, Hitler gives orders that Paris should not fall into Allied hands, or if it does, then “only as a field of rubble.” At dawn on August 25, Swedish Consul General Raoul Nordling steals into German headquarters and tries to appeal to reason and humanity to persuade the Wehrmacht Commander of Greater Paris to abandon his plan.
Dying to Know: Ram Dass and Timothy Leary
Sunday, May 31, 12:30 pm • Festival Tent
Directed by Gay Dillingham. Dying to Know follows the title characters and their epic friendship that shaped a generation. In 1995, Leary’s diagnosis with terminal cancer brought the two former friends together again to explore issues of death and dying, friendship, love, and life. Robert Redford narrates this tale of taboos.
Finding Vivian Maier
Saturday, May 30, 5:30 pm • Festival Tent
Directed by John Maloof and Charlie Siskel. From New York to France to Chicago, this Oscar- nominated documentary traces the path of the late Vivian Maier, a mysterious nanny who secretly took over 100,000 photographs that remained undiscovered until after her death.
Saturday, May 30, 3:00 pm • Crown Hall
Directed by Suzanne LaFetra and David Collier. In a city with one of the highest crime rates in the nation, five of the teens in Oakland’s Destiny Arts Youth Performance Company co-create a piece that asks them to dig into the motivating dilemmas and hopes of their lives.
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night
Saturday, May 30, 8:00 pm • Matheson
Directed by Ana Lily Amirpour. In the Iranian ghost-town of Bad City, a place that reeks of death and corruption, the townspeople are unaware that they are being stalked by a lonesome vampire – who happens to be a young woman obsessed with music.
Hand Made With Love in France (Le Temps Suspendu)
Friday, May 29, 12:30 pm • Festival Tent
Directed by Julie Georgia Bernard. Ever since the 16th century, expert French craftsmen have been creating the very essence of luxury. What will happen to the art of fashion once they are all gone? With humor and straightforwardness, the modern artisans who create fabulous haute- couture outfits for Dior, Chanel, and Yves Saint Laurent critique the fashion industry.
PRECEDED BY: Below the Row Directed by Glen Travis
Paul Frearson, a master coatmaker at Henry Poole & Co. on Savile Row, trains his apprentices in the craft and traditions of bespoke tailoring.
Harry and Snowman
Saturday, May 30, 10:30 am • Coast Cinemas, Sunday, May 31, 4:00 pm • Noyo Theatre, Willits
Directed by Ron Davis. Snowman was an old plow horse bound for the slaughterhouse when Dutch immigrant Harry deLeyer rescued him off the truck for only $80. Within two years, the duo rose to become the national show jumping champions, as the “Cinderella Horse” broke records and proved that with friendship and determination, anything is possible.
An Honest Liar
Saturday, May 30, 10:00 am • Festival Tent
Directed by Justin Weinstein and Tyler Measom. An Honest Liar delves deep into deception and the life of world-famous magician, escape artist, and master skeptic James ‘The Amazing’ Randi, bringing to life Randi’s intricate investigations that – with quasi-religious fervor – publicly exposed psychics, faith healers, and con artists.
Saturday, May 30, 5:30 pm • Crown Hall Sunday, May 31, 10:00 am • Festival Tent
Directed by Pawel Pawlikowski. 2015 Academy Award® Winner Ida is a powerful exploration of personal and national reckoning told through the story of two women on a road trip through early 1960s Poland: Anna, an orphaned novitiate nun, and her only living relative, her aunt Wanda, a cynical former Communist prosecutor.
Ilya and Emilia Kabakov: Enter Here
Sunday, May 31, 12:30 pm • Matheson
Directed by Amei Wallach. A portrait of the lives and work of Russia’s most celebrated international artists, now American citizens, as they come to terms with their global lives and the new Russia two decades after fleeing the Soviet Union.
Keep On Keepin’ On
Friday, May 29, 8:00 pm • Festival Tent Sunday, May 31, 10:30 am • Coast Cinemas, Fort Bragg
Directed by Alan Hicks.
After a life spent working with and teaching the most totemic figures in jazz history, including Miles Davis and Quincy Jones, music legend Clark Terry – among the few musicians to have performed in both Count Basie's and Duke Ellington's bands – continues to attract and cultivate budding talents, including blind piano prodigy Justin Kauflin.
Keep Rollin’ (Thank You For Nothing)
Friday, May 29, 5:30 pm • Crown Hall
Directed by Stefan Hillebrand and Oliver Paulus
Confined to a wheelchair after a snowboarding accident, Valentin, along with two fellow hospital patients, decides to hold up the convenience store where the boyfriend of his caretaker works. It is the beginning of a friendship and an audacious scheme that will either succeed or fail spectacularly.
Lady Be Good: Instrumental Women in Jazz
Sunday, May 31, 12:30 pm • Crown Hall Directed by Kay Ray (Q&A with filmmaker after screening)
Lady Be Good brings to light an important and neglected part of American music history: the contributions of American women instrumentalists in jazz from the early 1920s to the 1970s in spite of rampant discrimination. Featuring interviews with Peggy Gilbert, Marian McPartland, Carline Ray, Quincy Jones, Jane Sager, and many others.
Little White Lie
Friday, May 29, 5:30 pm • Matheson
Directed by Lacey Schwartz
Little White Lie tells filmmaker Lacey Schwartz’s unique story of growing up in a typical upper- middle-class Jewish household with loving parents and a strong sense of her Jewish identity — despite questions from those around her about her dark skin. At the age of 18, she confronts her mother and learns the truth: her biological father was not the man who raised her. Little White Lie is an intensely personal documentary about denial, the legacy of family secrets, and the power of the truth.
OF THE SEA: A Film About California Fishermen (Sneak Preview)
Saturday, May 30, 12:30 pm • Festival Tent
Directed by Mischa Hedges
In 1981, there were 6,900 fishing vessels in California. Today, only 1,800 remain. Exploring the causes of the decline, OF THE SEA follows the fishermen and entrepreneurs who are creating new models for sustainably-produced seafood, including several fishing families based out of Noyo Harbor.
Sunday, May 31, 3:00 pm • Crown Hall
Directed by Mark Levinson
Particle Fever follows six brilliant scientists during the launch of the Large Hadron Collider, pushing the edge of human innovation as over 10,000 scientists from over 100 countries join forces in search of the Higgs Boson. Directed by Mark Levinson, a physicist turned filmmaker, and masterfully edited by Walter Murch.
Plastic Man: The Artful Life Of Jerry Ross
Saturday, May 30, 3:00 pm • Matheson
Directed by Will Farley
Jerry Ross Barrish, San Francisco’s best-known bail bondsman, grew up in San Francisco in a working class family, the son of a prize fighter who counted famous gangsters and movie stars as friends...but his true calling was as an artist, transforming discarded materials into something else entirely.
Following the screening: Meet artist Jerry Ross Barrish and filmmaker Will Farley as we toast their work with our friends at the Mendocino Art Center.
Racing to Zero: In Pursuit of Zero Waste
Friday, May 29, 3:00 pm • Festival Tent Directed by Christopher Beaver
Three years ago the mayor of San Francisco pledged to achieve zero waste by 2020. Racing to Zero follows San Francisco’s trail of trash behind-the-scenes and discovers that the simple substitution of the word RESOURCE for the word GARBAGE can transform a culture, producing a wealth of new industries, and an intriguing and surprising race to zero.
Song of the Sea (Children’s Program)
Sunday, May 31, 10:00 am • Matheson $5 children, $10 adults
Directed by Tomm Moore
In this Oscar-nominated animated feature, young Ben is the reluctant caretaker of his six-year- old sister, Saoirse, who has yet to utter a single word. When their granny takes the children away to the city, Ben and Saoirse must embark on a fantastical journey home – and Saoirse must find her voice. Saoirse’s fate (and the fate of an entire magical world) depend upon it.
Heads or Tails
Directed by Kate Isenberg
Boy meets girl when his beach ball takes an unfortunate bounce—or, as it turns out, a fortuitous one. This twist of fate brings them together to make their way through life from first kiss to marriage, parenthood, and beyond.
Soul of a Banquet
Sunday, May 31, 3:00 pm • Matheson Directed by Wayne Wang
Director Wayne Wang (The Joy Luck Club) takes us into the world of Cecilia Chiang, who opened her internationally renowned restaurant The Mandarin in 1961 in San Francisco and went on to change the course of cuisine in America. Features interviews with Alice Waters, Ruth Reichl, and Cecilia Chiang herself.
Sun Belt Express
Saturday, May 30, 5:30 pm • Matheson
Directed by Evan Buxbaum. A down-on-his-luck ethics professor ends up on a completely unhinged run across the Mexican border into the United States with his teenage daughter in tow - and four undocumented immigrants in the trunk of his car. Starring Tate Donovan, Rachael Harris, and Miguel Sandoval.
Take Me to the River
Saturday, May 30, 8:00 pm • Crown Hall Directed by Martin Shore
Take Me to the River celebrates the musical influence of Stax Records in Memphis, even in the face of pervasive discrimination and segregation, following multiple generations of award- winning Memphis and Mississippi Delta musicians through the creative process of recording a historic new album. Featuring Terrence Howard, William Bell, Snoop Dog, Mavis Staples, Otis Clay, Lil P-Nut, Charlie Musselwhite, Bobby "Blue" Bland, Yo Gotti, Bobby Rush, Frayser Boy, The North Mississippi All-Stars, and many more.
This Is My Land
Friday, May 29, 3:00 pm • Crown Hall Directed by Tamara Erde
This is My Land takes audiences inside classrooms in Israel and the occupied West Bank to look at how people interpret and teach history in a contested region. This Is My Land demonstrates the long-lasting and profound effect that the Israeli/Palestinian conflict has on the population and how that affects the next generation.
Tracing Roots: A Weaver’s Journey
Sunday, May 31, 10:00 am • Crown Hall Directed by Ellen Frankenstein
Tracing Roots is a portrait of an artist and a mystery. The film follows master weaver and Haida elder Delores Churchill on a journey to understand the origins of a spruce root hat found with a 300-year-old traveler discovered in Northern Canada in a retreating glacier.
Directed by Ashley James
Initially influenced by Alexander Calder, David Smith, and Harry Bertola, the work of renowned Bay Area kinetic sculptor Jerome Kirk transcends those masters and sets entirely new standards in kinetic sculpture.
SPECIAL PROGRAMS A Tribute to Albert Maysles Saturday, May 30, 10:00 am, Crown Hall
We celebrate the life and work of Albert Maysles, as well as his role in shaping the Mendocino Film Festival, with a Tribute to the Dean of Documentary Filmmaking on Saturday, May 30. Director Alan Hicks (Keep On Keepin’ On) hosts this event in memory of our dear friend.
Sunday, May 31, 5:30 pm, Festival Tent
Join us for our Tenth Anniversary Closing Night Celebration: a showcase of eight local films as we highlight the work of our talented and artistic filmmaker community here in Mendocino.
Featuring: Dry Season (Max Good and Tyler Trumbo); The Cage (Robert Santos and Peter Wells); the Friends, Food, Land series “To Prune,” “Soul Food,” “Newt Wonders,” and “Show Me” (Flora Skivington and Jessica Martin); With Love (Laurie York and Carmen Goodyear); and, Dust (Justin Lewis).
Seabiscuit Legacy Film Series
Sunday, May 31, 12:00 pm, Ridgewood Ranch, Willits This program screens at Ridgewood Ranch in Willits on Sunday, May 31. Riding My Way Back
Directed by Robin Fryday and Peter Rosenbaum. One soldier’s journey back from the brink of suicide. On 42 medications, Aaron is at his most desperate and isolated when he is introduced to the unlikeliest of saviors: a horse named Fred.
Ridgewood Ranch: The Home of Seabiscuit
Produced by the Mendocino County Museum.
This short film explores the history of Ridgewood Ranch, Seabiscuit’s home and final resting place. See Seabiscuit’s homecoming in 1940, Red Pollard’s wedding, and scenes from the races.
The Making of a Legend: Seabiscuit’s 1940 Victory at Santa Anita Park
Produced by Kip Hannan. Footage courtesy of Santa Anita Park.
Said jockey Red Pollard ahead of the legendary Santa Anita Handicap on March 2, 1940, “Old Pops and I have four good legs between us. I hope that’s enough.” It was, and the rest is history:
Seabiscuit and Red Pollard broke the track record, making Seabiscuit the richest horse in racing history.
Short Films Program 1: Festival Favorites MULTIPLE SCREENING TIMES
Sunday, May 24, 12:00 pm, Balo Vineyards • Philo Friday, May 29, 5:30 pm • Festival Tent Sunday, May 31, 10:15 am, Coast Cinemas • Fort Bragg Special Screening for Members: Thursday, May 28, 7:00 pm, Festival Tent
Join us for ten festival favorites as we celebrate our Tenth Anniversary. Betsy Ford and Ann Walker, retiring after a decade, established the Festival’s signature “feel-good” shorts program. Over the years you’ve told them your favorites, and they've gathered them together into one stellar program, with films ranging from sweet to poignant to downright hilarious. 112 min.
Short Films Program 2: The Body Electric MULTIPLE SCREENING TIMES
Friday, May 29, 8:00 pm • Matheson Saturday, May 30, 10:15 am • Coast Cinemas, Fort Bragg Sunday, May 31, 3:00 pm • Festival Tent Sunday, May 31, 4:00 pm • Arena Theater, Point Arena
What does it mean to live? Join us as we explore “The Body Electric” – human expression of spirit and the qualities of courage, energy, and determination, as they are expressed through art, dance, music, sports, humor and just living life. 68 min.
About the Mendocino Film Festival: The Mendocino Film Festival has become renowned on the festival circuit, drawing filmmakers and attendees from around the world. Featuring special events, filmmaker Q&As, and panels, the program offers the unique opportunity to meet filmmakers and film aficionados in a relaxed setting while enjoying the striking natural beauty of Mendocino County, which has inspired generations of artists.
For more information on the Tenth Anniversary Mendocino Film Festival, contact Kira Wojack at (707) 937-0171 or visit www.MendocinoFilmFestival.org.
We expect sold-out shows, so we recommend purchasing tickets in advance.
Here is a link to the MFF website.
Mark your calendars now for the Tenth Annual Mendocino Film Festival!
Mendocino Film Festival
P.O. Box 1843
Mendocino, CA 95460