Posted in: by Sean Axmaker, Contributors, Film Festivals, SIFF

SIFFtings 2016 – Week 2

SIFF celebrates its Renton Opening Night on Thursday, May 26 with a screening of the comedy My Blind Brother at the IKEA Performing Arts Center, followed by a party at the Renton Pavilion Event Center. Because SIFF isn’t just about the movies. It likes to party too.

And on Friday, May 27, SIFF extends its reach to Shoreline for the first time this year and it kicks off with a Shoreline Opening Night screening of The Tenth Man (Argentina), a lighthearted drama of a New York-based Jewish-Argentinian man returning home to Bueno Aires for Purim. Screenings take place at the newly-renovated theater on the Shoreline Community College campus (building 1600; see the Shoreline CC map), which is said to be state-of-the-art. I’ll be verifying this weekend; as a Shoreline resident myself, I’m thrilled to see the festival in my backyard. Campus parking is free for visitors after 4pm on weekdays and all day on weekends.

Tiny: The Life of Erin Blackwell, a follow-up to the devastating documentary Streetwise, received its World Premiere at SIFF. More than thirty years after that acclaimed exploration of the culture of homeless teenagers in Seattle, Tiny revisits Erin Blackwell, the poster girl of Streetwise—literally, her stone face behind vintage second-hand fashions was the defining image of the film. Director Martin Bell and photographer Mary Ellen Mark profile Ms. Blackwell as struggling mother with ten children, still fighting to get by. Martin Bell is scheduled to attend screenings.
Sunday, May 29, 4pm, Pacific Place; Monday, May 30, 11am, Pacific Place.

Chinese filmmaker Xu Haofeng brings the North American premiere of The Final Master (China) for three screenings across the city. Xu co-wrote the award-winning The Grandmaster with director Wong Kar-wai and his action choreography for The Final Master won an award at the Golden Horse Film Festival.
Saturday, May 28, 6pm, Uptown; Sunday, May 29, 6:30pm, Shoreline Community College Theater.

Also making its North American premiere is Eternal Summer, a road trip crime movie through Northern Sweden. Filmmaker Andreas Ohman is scheduled to attend all screenings this weekend.
Friday, May 27, 7pm, Lincoln Square Cinemas; Saturday, May 28, 1:30pm, Pacific Place; Sunday, May 29, 6:30pm, Pacific Place.

Truman (Spain/Argentina) arrives with five Goya Awards to its credit, including Best Picture. Director Cesc Gay scheduled to attend screenings at the Egyptian only.
Sunday, May 29, 4:30pm, Egyptian; Monday, May 30, 6:30pm, Egyptian; Friday, June 3, 9pm, Shoreline Community College Theater.

Memorial Day Weekend is ShortsFest Weekend for SIFF. All short films in competitions will play out over the long weekend. The complete shorts line-up is here.


Sammo Hung directs and stars in The Bodyguard (Hong Kong/China), which makes its North American premiere at SIFF.
Friday, May 27, 8:30pm, Renton IKEA Performing Arts Center; Monday, May 30, 8:30pm, Pacific Place.

Evolution (France) is the second feature from Lucille Hadžihalilovic (Innocence).
Sunday, May 29, 9:30pm, Uptown; Monday, May 30, 1:30pm, Pacific Place.

Our Kind of Traitor, based on the novel by John Le Carré and starring Ewan McGregor and Naomie Harris, is a SIFF Special Presentation.
Sunday, May 29, 7:15pm, Egyptian; Monday, May 30, 2:30pm, Uptown.

The documentary Tower, which explores the 1966 massacre at the University of Texas (the first mass school shooting in the U.S.), won the Grand Jury and Audience Awards at SXSW.
Thursday, June 2, 6:30, Uptown; Friday, June 3, 4pm, Pacific Place.

Archival presentations:

Ernst Lubitsch’s Technicolor comedy Heaven Can Wait (1943) is newly restored by The Film Foundation. Don Ameche and Gene Tierney star and Laird Cregar is a charming, urbane Satan.
Saturday, May 28m 11am, Egyptian.

The silent era lasted longer in Asia than in the west and The Big Road (China, 1935) comes from the end of China’s silent era. Donald Sosin, a frequent and favorite SIFF guest, provides the live score.
Tuesday. May 31, 7pm, Uptown.

Northwest Connections:

The Memory of Fish, a documentary about the campaign to restore Washington’s Elwha River with the biggest dam-removal project in U.S. history, has it’s World Premiere at SIFF. Directors Jennifer Galvin and Sachi Cunningham, editor Erin Barnett, and composer Gil Talmi scheduled to attend both SIFF screenings.
Sunday, May 29, 4pm, Uptown; Monday, May 30, 3pm, Uptown

Vintage Tomorrows dives into the steampunk subculture of science fiction. Documentary director Byrd McDonald and producer Alan Winston are scheduled to attend screenings.
Sunday, May 29, 3:00pm, Renton IKEA PAC; Friday, June 3, 8:30pm, Uptown; Sunday, June 5, 1:00pm, Kirkland Performance Center

The documentary Finding Kim profiles Seattle transgender man Kim B. and his late-life transition after years of identity issues and addiction. Filmmaker Aaron Bear and subject Kim B. are scheduled to attend.
Tuesday, May 31, 3:30pm, Uptown.

More guests:

Director Agnieszka Smoczynska scheduled to attend screenings of The Lure (Poland), which the SIFF Guide describes as “a fanciful horror-tinged New Wave rock opera” with mermaids.
Friday, May 27, 9:30pm, Egyptian; Saturday, May 28, 4pm, Egyptian; Sunday, May 29, 9:15pm, Shoreline Community College.

Zhang Yang, who was honored at SIFF as an Emerging Master over a decade ago, is back to present his new film Paths of the Soul (China).
Friday, May 27, 4pm. Egyptian.

Actor Craig Robinson will attend screenings of Morris from America. He plays the father of a hip-hop-loving son who remakes himself when the family moves to Germany.
Wednesday, June 1, 7pm, Egyptian; Thursday, May 2, 4:30pm, Egyptian.

Director Ceyda Torun and producer Charlie Wuppermann scheduled to attend screenings of Kedi (Turkey).
Saturday, May 28, 3pm, Uptown; Monday, May 30, 12 noon, Uptown.

You can explore Parallax View’s SIFF 2016 Guide, featuring recommendations, reviews, interviews, and other SIFF coverage from around the web, here.