The Chattanooga Film Festival Announces Second Wave Of Films

Thursday, March 5, 2015

The Chattanooga Film Festival announced a second wave of films, adding 13 more features to its programming. Two workshops have also been added to the festival’s schedule of events, a documentary based workshop with Mark Covino, and an acting workshop with Pat Healy. 

“With our second wave of title announcements, I realize even more how deeply in love with this year's CFF lineup I am," said CFF Executive Director and Lead Programmer Chris Dortch II. "I don't think that there is any type of movie fan who couldn't find at least one film to love this year, and myself and our team have agonized over every single choice.

We want this festival to be fun for everyone.”

Digging For Fire - Directed by Joe Swanberg

The discovery of a bone and a gun send a husband (Jake Johnson) and wife (Rosemarie DeWitt) on separate adventures over the course of a weekend.

Finders Keepers - Directed by Bryan Carberry and J. Clay Tweel

A memorable documentary detailing a startling find by bargain hunter Shannon Whisnant, who discovers among the ashes of a used grill he bought at a North Carolina auction a severed human foot. Whisnant couldn’t believe his find and hoped to cash in on the ensuing media frenzy, but then John Wood, an addict and an amputee, demands his foot back. Sundance called it “the stuff of documentary legend.”

 Cut Bank - Directed by Matt Shakman

Twenty-five year-old Dwayne McLaren, a former athlete turned auto mechanic, dreams of getting out of tiny Cut Bank, Mt., the coldest town in America. But his effort to do so sets in motion a deadly series of events that change his life and the life of the town forever. The star-laden cast includes Liam Hemsworth, John Malkovich, Bruce Dern and Billy Bob Thornton.

Roar - Directed by Noel Marshall

If your only memory of actress Tippi Hedren is nearly getting pecked to death in Alfred Hitchock’s classic The Birds, prepare to have a new indelible image of Ms. Hedren—and her entire family, including daughter and actress Melanie Griffith—living with more than 100 lions in their Beverly Hills home and then making a movie about them to raise awareness of their poor treatment in captivity. More than 70 attacks on Ms. Hedren and her family ensue. This one isn’t as crazy as it sounds; it’s even crazier than that.

What We Do In The Shadows -  Directed by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi

Housemates Viago, Deacon, and Vladislav are three vampires who are trying to get by in modern society; from paying rent and doing housework to trying to get invited into nightclubs, they’re just like anyone else—except they’re immortal and must feast on human blood.

Song Of The Sea -  Directed by Tomm Moore

Saoirse is a child who is the last of the selkies, women in Irish and Scottish legends who transform from seals into people. She escapes from her grandmother's home to journey to the sea and free fairy creatures trapped in the modern world. Nominated for an Oscar in 2015 for Best Animated Feature Film of the Year.

The Tale Of Princess Kaguya -  Directed by Isao Takahata

Found inside a shining stalk of bamboo by an old bamboo cutter and his wife, a tiny girl grows rapidly into an exquisite young lady. The mysterious young princess enthralls all who encounter her—but ultimately she must confront her fate, the punishment for her crime. Nominated for an Oscar in 2015 for Best Animated Feature Film of the Year.

A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night -  Directed by Ana Lily Amirpour

*With introduction by executive producer Elijah Wood

The first Vampire Western ever made in the Farsi language, Ana Lily Amirpour's debut basks in the sheer pleasure of pulp. A joyful mash-up of genre, archetype, and iconography, its prolific influences span spaghetti westerns, graphic novels, horror films, and the Iranian New Wave.

The Keeping Room -  Directed by Daniel Barber

The Keeping Room focuses on the violent resilience and dramatic camaraderie of three Southern women as their home is besieged during the purges at the close of the American Civil War. Forced to defend their land and fight for their lives, the women take up arms against their male oppressors, shattering gender and genre conventions in the process. A forceful turn from Brit Marling (Arbitrage, I Origins) heads a formidable trio of female leads that includes Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit, Ender’s Game) and newcomer Muna Otaru in a powerful breakout role. 

Hard To Be A God -  Directed by Aleksey German

Taking place on the planet Arkanar, which is in the midst of its own Middle Ages, the film focuses on Don Rumata, one of a group of earth scientists who have been sent to Arkanar with the proviso that they must not interfere in the planet's political or historical development. Treated by the planet's natives as a kind of divinity, Don Rumata is both godlike and impotent in the face of its chaos and brutality. When legendary Russian auteur Aleksei German died in 2013, he left behind this extraordinary final film, a phantasmagoric adaptation of the revered sci-fi novel by the Strugatsky brothers. 

Do I Sound Gay? -  Directed by David Thorpe

Is there such a thing as a "gay voice"? Why do some people "sound gay" but not others? Why are gay voices a mainstay of pop culture—but also a trigger for anti-gay harassment? The feature documentary Do I Sound Gay? explores these questions and more and includes revealing interviews with Margaret Cho, Tim Gunn, Don Lemon, Dan Savage, David Sedaris and George Takei.

Wyrmwood: Road Of The Dead -  Directed by Kiah Roache-Turner

Imagine a cross between Mad Max and Dawn of the Dead and you’ll have a nice head start on this film, which follows mechanic Barry, having already lost his wife and daughter to a zombie plague, setting out in search of his sister, who has been kidnapped by a deranged doctor.

Buzzard -  Directed by Joel Potrykus

Marty Jackitansky is a caustic, small-time con artist drifting from one scam to the next. When his latest ruse goes awry, mounting paranoia forces him from his lousy small town temp job to the desolate streets of Detroit with nothing more than a pocket full of bogus checks, a dangerously altered Nintendo Power Glove, and a bad temper.

In addition to the above titles, there will be two Secret Screenings presented in 35mm film. Festival organizers can only tell you that one of the films is family friendly and guaranteed to blow the minds of parents who grew up in the 1980s, while the other is so great it’s only open to badge holders. 

"CFF is proud to have Pat Healy, one of the greatest actors working in film or television today. With excellent performances in such acclaimed independents films as Cheap Thrills, The Innkeepers and Compliance, all the way up to roles in blockbusters such as Captain America: The Winter Solider and Draft Day. Healy’s career has run the gamut, making him well qualified to teach his craft for the CFF Acting Workshop," officials said.

Those who prefer the other side of the camera have not been forgotten by CFF. Mark Covino, director of the critically acclaimed A Band Called Death, comes to the festival with a Documentary Filmmaking Workshop to educate both veteran and fledgling filmmakers on the subtle art of documentary filmmaking. 

The Chattanooga Film Festival’s second year is set for April 2-5. "After a successful first year with more than 4,000 attendees, the festival continues its mission to “Respect Cinema,” in hopes of increasing film exhibition, education and production in the state of Tennessee," officials said.

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