April – May 2014
Hailed by Michael Moore as “one of the best documentaries about a band that I’ve ever seen” and by Pitchfork as “the funniest, most meta music movie since SPINAL TAP,” MISTAKEN FOR STRANGERS is a truly hilarious, unusual, and moving film about two brothers, Matt and Tom Berninger.
Matt, the lead singer of the critically acclaimed rock band The National, finally finds himself flush with success. His younger brother, Tom, is a loveable slacker – a filmmaker and metal-head still living with his parents in Cincinnati. On the eve of The National’s biggest tour to date, Matt invites Tom to work for the band as a roadie, unaware of Tom’s plan to film the entire adventure.
What starts as a rock documentary soon becomes a surprisingly honest portrait of a charged relationship between two brothers, and the frustration of unfulfilled creative ambitions. Directed by Tom Berninger. Digital. 2013.
Winner of the Golden Bear, grand prize at the 2013 Berlin Film Festival!
“A fascinating, troubling portrait of maternal anxiety at its most smotheringly neurotic.”
– Washington Post
“Searing… …an engrossing character study and a biting social statement that works on so many levels, it’s hard to separate them all.” – San Francisco Chronicle
Călin Peter Netzer’s sharply crafted CHILD’S POSE pivots on a riveting performance by Luminita Gheorghiu (Best Supporting Actress, The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, Los Angeles Film Critics) as a steely, well-to-do Bucharest architect determined to keep her 30-something deadbeat son out of jail after a deadly car crash. How far will she go to convince the police, eyewitnesses and even the victim’s family that her son was not recklessly speeding? A spellbinding drama of social commentary and psychological realism, this caustic look into the corrupt heart of the Eastern European bourgeoisie twists into a brilliantly ambiguous study of obsessive motherly love. The Official Romanian Entry for Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards. Digital. 2013.
“Perversely engrossing thanks to Gheorghiu’s performance as the queen of denial.– Newsday
“A tour-de-force performance from Gheorghiu” – J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader
Sunday, April 13
How did a casual party game designed for the family become one of the most watched fighters in the history of competitive gaming? From East Point Pictures, THE SMASH BROTHERS chronicles the saga of the small yet passionate community responsible for this transformation and provides a rare account of the real lives beyond the controller. The documentary series follows the top seven “smashers” of the last decade, and examines the shaping of the competitive Smash Brothers scene as it exists today. All profits will be donated to Child’s Play. Directed by Samox. 2013. Digital.
2 PM – 4:15 PM: Episodes 1-5 // 4:15 PM – 5 PM: Intermission and Q&A with director //
5 PM – 7:30 PM: Episodes 6-9
A FRAGILE TRUST tells the shocking story of Jayson Blair, the most infamous serial plagiarist of our time, and how he unleashed the massive scandal that rocked the New York Times and the entire world of journalism. In 2003 Blair was caught plagiarizing the work of other reporters and supplementing his own reporting with fabricated details in dozens of different stories published in the Times. The ensuing media frenzy left a major blemish on the history of the ‘Old Grey Lady’, which just a year earlier won a record 7 Pulitzer prizes for its coverage of 9/11. It was a spectacular fall for both Blair and the paper. The daily operations of the Times newsroom became a public spectacle as every major news outlet picked up the story and ran with it. The fact that Blair is African-American was emphasized again and again as accounts of the ‘Blair Affair’ served up sordid details in a soap-opera style tale of deception, drug abuse, racism, mental illness, hierarchy, white guilt, and power struggles inside the hallowed halls of the New York Times.
Through the course of the film, we follow Blair as he slowly unravels in the face of mounting pressures and distractions. Starting with his ‘reporting’ of the plagiarized article that ultimately lead to his undoing, we trace the rise and fall of this fascinating young reporter as he clings to his career at the Times even as he is losing his mind.
The Jayson Blair scandal is at the most basic level a compelling, character-driven narrative about an important chapter in the history of journalism. It is also a complex story about power, ethics, representation, race, and accountability in the mainstream media. Featuring exclusive interviews with everyone involved, including former Executive Editor Howell Raines and Blair himself, A FRAGILE TRUST is the first film to tell the whole sordid story of the scandal while exploring these deeper themes. With more and more publications moving to online-only formats and plagiarism on the rise, this cautionary tale about the slippery slope of ethical transgressions is more relevant than ever.
“The movie is as insanely entertaining as a Mad Hatter’s tea party”. – Gerald Peary, Arts Fuse
“Fascinating and horrifying”. – Michael Sragow, OC Register
In THE UNKNOWN KNOWN, Academy Award-winning director Errol Morris (THE FOG OF WAR) offers a mesmerizing portrait of Donald Rumsfeld, one of the key architects of the Iraq War, and a larger-than-life character who provoked equal levels of fury and adulation from the American public. Rather than conducting a conventional interview, Morris has Rumsfeld perform and expound on his “snowflakes,” tens of thousands of memos (many never previously published) he composed as a congressman and as an advisor to four different presidents, twice as Secretary of Defense. These memos provide a window onto history—not history as it actually happened, but history as Rumsfeld wants us to see it. Morris makes plain that Rumsfeld’s “snowflakes”—whether intended to elucidate, rationalize, obfuscate, or control history—are contradicted by the facts. THE UNKNOWN KNOWN is an illumination of the mystery of Donald Rumsfeld, an unknown known.
Directed by Errol Morris. With Donald Rumsfeld, Errol Morris. 2013. US. Digital. 103 mins. MPAA Rating: PG-13
Easter Sunday and some…other…celebrated…day…we…can’t…quite…remember converge this year, and to celebrate, we’re presenting the timeless story of a neglected boy sent to magic school to learn to be the best wizard of them all. PLEASE NOTE: A spell was cast onto the soundtrack, and now it’s something magically different for this screening. Starring Daniel Radcliffe, Richard Harris & Maggie Smith. Dir: Christopher Columbus. 2001. Digital. 152 mins.Ages 18+ only!
In 2001, the tiny Pacific island of American Samoa suffered a world record 31-0 defeat at the hands of Australia, garnering headlines across the world as the worst football team on the planet. A decade after that humiliating night, they remain rooted to the bottom of FIFA’s World rankings, having scored only twice in seventeen years. They have lost every competitive game they have ever played. Against this backdrop of serial underachievement, the team face the daunting prospect of a qualification campaign for the upcoming 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
It would take a miracle-maker or a madman to turn the team’s fortunes around – and in maverick Dutch coach Thomas Rongen the islanders somehow find both. To complicate matters further the team’s best player has been posted 6000 miles away by the US military. Rongen has just one month to transform this ragtag of losers into a winning team – and perhaps learn a little about himself along the way. Directed by Mike Brett & Steve Jamison. In English & Samoan. Digital. 93 mins. 2014.
Saturday, April 26th
Join BAYCAT (Bayview Hunters Point Center for Arts and Technology) for the PREMIERE of their latest youth-produced Community Cinema film, Endangered: A Healthy Bayview for All. Endangered, created in partnership with the Metta Fund, asked four BAYCAT youth to tackle the question “What does a healthy Bayview look like?”. BAYCAT will also screen several youth-produced shorts that focus on the strengths, hopes, and challenges of the Bayview community. A panel, moderated by BAYCAT CEO, Villy Wang, of Bayview leaders, youth media producers, and health professionals will follow to discuss the films, and the past, present and future of Bayview.
Free admission thanks to The Metta Fund, who are sponsoring the event and healthy snacks!
BENEFIT FOR EL TECOLOTE NEWSPAPER
Co-presented by Acción Latina & Colectivo Cinema Errante
The film will be introduced by: Rosalío Muñoz, co-chair of the 1970 Chicano Moratorium in Los Angeles; Dr. Félix Gutiérrez, professor, USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism; Ernesto B. Vigil, member of the Crusade for Justice from 1968–1981; Ricardo Lopez, advisor and Associate Producer of the film; Camille Taiara, journalist.
It was the era of the Brown Berets and Vietnam War protests, and cops had already warned L.A. Times journalist Rubén Salazar to “stop stirring up the Mexicans” with his coverage of police brutality, frame-ups and extra-judicial killings. Weeks later, Salazar met his early demise at the Silver Dollar Bar in East L.A., after a Sheriff’s deputy fired a 10-inch teargas projectile at his head. Rubén Salazar: Man in the Middle, a new documentary about this little-known Mexican-American protagonist, is as much about a generation’s rite-of-passage from assimilationism to Chicanismo as it is about Salazar’s journalistic legacy and suspicious death. Director Phillip Rodriguez uses stock film footage alongside old photographs and interviews with Salazar colleagues, family, friends and other key personalities to reconstruct the story of Rubén Salazar. (Camille T. Taiara)
Co-sponsors: CCSF Journalism Department, SFSU Latina/o Studies Department, Rock en Rebelión (KPFA), Pájaro Latinoamericano (KPOO), Andanzas (KPOO)
Director Jeremy Ambers in person for Q&A after the screening.
On March 5th, 2013, San Francisco’s skyline was transformed by an amazing sight: 25,000 LED lights that, for perhaps the first time save the 1989 earthquake, caused people to consider the Bay Bridge instead of her iconic sister.
How did this happen? Who was behind the eight-million-dollar installation? How in the world did they pull it off?
The story behind the making of THE BAY LIGHTS—a project whose very “impossibility made it possible”—answers these questions, revealing the drama and the daring of artist Leo Villareal and a small team of visionaries who battle seemingly impossible challenges to turn a dream of creating the world’s largest LED light sculpture into a glimmering reality.
Directed by Jeremy Ambers. With Timothy Childs, Amy Critchett, Ben Davis. 2014. US. Digital. 71 mins. MPAA Rating: NR