Santa Fe New Mexican

Santa Fe Independent Film Festival announces its first 10 films 

The Santa Fe Independent Film Festival this week announced its first 10 feature film selections, including pictures from Japanese, Brazilian and South Korean directors, as well as a documentary about the popular Santa Fe-based arts collective Meow Wolf.

Some 40 feature films will screen at the festival in October, in addition to an armful of shorts, panels and parties at theaters across town.

The Oct. 17-21 festival this year marks the 10th anniversary of the well-regarded annual indie confab.

"These first 10 films include some of the hottest films of the year, and the first chance to see them in this part of the country, with critically acclaimed foreign titles, award-winning American independents and festival darlings'" said Jacques Paisner, the festival's executive director and co-founder. 

The pictures announced this week are:

The Blessing, a documentary following a Navajo coal miner raising his secretive daughter. Filmmakers were granted unprecedented access to a family on the Navajo Nation, a news release states. Directed by Hunter Robert Baker and Jordan Fein.

Good Girls Get High, a comedy about a pair of academically gifted seniors who decide to party hard as their high school careers end. Directed by Laura Terruso.

Grass, an episodic drama of a woman observing conversations at a cafe. Directed by Sang-soo Hong.

On Her Shoulders, an award-winning documentary that follows Nadia Murad, a 23-year-old Yazidi human rights activist who survived the 2014 genocide of her people in Northern Iraq. Directed by Alexandria Bombach, who was recognized as the top director of a documentary at the Sundance Film Festival this year.

Loveling, a well-reviewed Brazilian family drama. Directed by Gustavo Pizzi.

Meow Wolf: The Origin Story, from local documentarians Jilann Spitzmiller and Morgan Capps, charts the rise of the psychedelic arts collective from humble Santa Fe beginnings to national fame.

Shoplifters, winner of the 2018 Palme d'Or, the top prize of the Cannes Film Festival, follows an impoverished Japanese family of shoplifters as they adopt a young homeless girl. Directed by Hirokazu Kore-eda.

The Silence of Others, which won the Peace Award at the this year's Berlin International Film Festival, covers the ongoing struggle of Spanish victims of Francisco Franco's dictatorship. Directed by Almundo Carracedo and Robert Bahar.

Revengeance, an animated tale of a teenage girl seeking payback from a biker gang. Directed by Jim Lujan and Bill Plympton.

Wild Nights with Emily, a dramatization of the ?secret life? of the poet Emily Dickinson, played by Molly Shannon. Directed by Madeleine Olnek.

Early bird festival passes are now on sale, as are tickets to a 10-year anniversary gala at Hotel Santa Fe. The remainder of the schedule is expected later this month.

By Tripp Stelnicki

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