STUCK (2012 Heartland Film Festival Official Selection and co-winner of the Audience Choice Award – Documentary Feature) is back! Indianapolis, IN, is the 45th stop on a 61-city barnstorming tour the documentary is taking to promote international adoption reform.
This is perhaps the most unique premiere on the tour–not only will Executive Producer Craig Juntunen be fielding questions in a discussion after the screening, but he will be joined by his three children from Haiti, adoptive parents Nick and Lori Leroy who are featured in the film, and adoption attorney Kelly Ensslin, also in the film.
The tour will end May 17 in Washington, D.C., where the Step Forward for Orphans March will attract families from all over the country to meet with their representatives and deliver signed petitions gathered during the 78-day tour. To learn more about the march, click here.
CBS Films’ coming-of-age comedy honored by national arts organization Heartland Truly Moving Pictures for its ability to inspire, educate and engage.
Heartland Truly Moving Pictures has given its Truly Moving Picture Award (TMPA) to CBS Films’ release The Kings of Summer, the coming-of-age comedy that premiered to rave reviews at the Sundance Film Festival.
“The Kings of Summer is a quirky film with a great message,” explained Heartland’s Artistic Director Tim Irwin. “The themes of courage, friendship, family, parenting, and growing up were very well received by our jury. Jurors were also struck by the film’s rich photography and acting ensemble.
“A perfect balance of comedy and drama, The Kings of Summer is a solid reflection of adolescent angst and the struggle, bravery and independence necessary to respond to life’s hard circumstances. We are proud to honor The Kings of Summer with the Truly Moving Picture Award.”
The TMPA honors select theatrically-released films that offer more than mere entertainment: awarded films inspire, educate and engage audiences and filmmakers alike. Heartland bestows the TMPA to approximately 15-20 films a year that impact their targeted audiences in a meaningful way. Submissions are received directly from studios and producers for consideration.
About “The Kings of Summer” Premiering to rave reviews at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, The Kings of Summer is a unique coming-of-age comedy about three teenage friends – Joe (Nick Robinson), Patrick (Gabriel Basso) and the eccentric and unpredictable Biaggio (Moises Arias) – who, in the ultimate act of independence, decide to spend their summer building a house in the woods and living off the land. Free from their parents’ rules, their idyllic summer quickly becomes a test of friendship as each boy learns to appreciate the fact that family – whether it is the one you’re born into or the one you create – is something you can’t run away from. (CBS FILMS)
About CBS Films CBS Films is a division of CBS Corporation. The division develops, finances, acquires, produces and releases theatrical feature films spanning all genres. For more information, log on to www.cbsfilms.com.
2012 Heartland Film Festival Official Selection BESA: The Promise returns to Indianapolis, IN, for a special screening event with Carmel, IN, Producer Bill Morgan.
BESA: The Promise, an award-winning film featuring an original score by Philip Glass, celebrates the common thread of humanity that connects people of all religions. The Independent Critic calls it a “surprise” and a story “few Americans have even heard about.” Matt Loudon from NUVO says: “The film challenges our traditional thoughts about Jewish-Muslim relations, as men bridge generation gaps and differences in faith to survive.”
An Official Selection – Documentary Feature of the 2012 Heartland Film Festival, this internationally acclaimed documentary returns to Indiana for the Ann Katz Festival of Books and Art, 2nd Edition at the JCC.
Following the screening, the audience will have an opportunity to talk with the film’s producer, Bill Morgan. Mr. Morgan currently resides in Carmel, IN, The event is presented by the JCC and Heartland Truly Moving Pictures.
BESA: The Promise follows the modern-day quests of two men: American photographer Norman H. Gershman and Albanian toyshop owner Rexhep Hoxha. Their intersecting journeys reveal the nearly unknown WWII story of thousands of Jews rescued in Albania, a majority Muslim country. The Albanian moral code of besa requires a promise of protection to anyone requesting it, and carries across generations. Rexhep Hoxha’s father sheltered a Jewish family who left behind three precious Hebrew books. Kept hidden during the nearly half-century of repressive communism following the war, Rexhep must now fulfill his father’s besa and return the books – if he can find the family. When Rexhep meets Norman, an unexpected drama is set in motion, uniting fathers and sons, Muslims and Jews.
BEST DOCUMENTARY AWARDS
The 2013 Beaufort International Film Festival awarded BESA: The Promise Best Documentary, and for her work on the film, Rachel Goslins received the Best Director award.
The Seattle Jewish Film Festival also awarded it Best Documentary, and JT News called it “riveting, revelatory, and profound.” In January, BESA: The Promise opened to two sold out screenings in its hometown at the Washington Jewish Film Festival and took home the Audience Award for Best Documentary.
“BESA: The Promise has a story like no other,” says the Huffington Post. “…the film’s tense climax and spiritually-uplifting resolution will leave even the most cynical viewer with a new respect for the inherent decency of men.”
BESA: The Promise made its European premiere in Tirana, Albania on November 8th at the 13th Festival of Albanian Film in the 100th Independence Year. Prime Minister Sali Berisha, Speaker of Parliament Jozefina Topalli and Minister of Culture Aldo Bumçi were all in attendance. Also present was Rexhep Hoxha, whose story is central to the film. The capacity crowd gave the film a standing ovation. Although not in competition, BESA: The Promise was presented with a Special Jury Award by the Festival at the closing night gala. A short video of the visit to Albania can be seen on the film’s Facebook page.
In the spring of 2005, acclaimed environmental photographer James Balog headed to the Arctic on a tricky assignment for National Geographic: to capture images to help tell the story of the Earth’s changing climate. Even with a scientific upbringing, Balog had been a skeptic about climate change. But that first trip north opened his eyes to the biggest story in human history and sparked a challenge within him that would put his career and his very well-being at risk.
Chasing Ice is the story of one man’s mission to change the tide of history by gathering undeniable evidence of our changing planet. Within months of that first trip to Iceland, the photographer conceived the boldest expedition of his life: The Extreme Ice Survey. With a band of young adventurers in tow, Balog began deploying revolutionary time-lapse cameras across the brutal Arctic to capture a multi-year record of the world’s changing glaciers.
2012 Heartland Film Festival Award Winner – Narrative Feature
Lauduree is a 13-year-old loner, passionate about nature and obsessed with ecological disaster. Greta, her grandmother, is a fiery nurse jaded by alcohol and disappointment. When Lauduree is abruptly abandoned by her dreamer single mom, she decides to take survival into her own hands, forcing her and Greta to learn to trust each other and leap into the unknown.
Featuring humorous, sharply drawn characters and powerful performances by Amy Madigan (Field of Dreams, Gone Baby Gone), Lili Taylor (Say Anything, Six Feet Under), and breakout star Perla Haney-Jardine (Kill Bill Vol. 2, Spider-Man 3), Future Weather is about finding the courage to survive change.
2010 Heartland Film Festival Official Selection
Jeb, an average American guy, who is admittedly not a tree hugger, makes a resolution to stop using plastic bags at the grocery store. Little does he know that this simple decision will change his life completely. Jeb comes to the conclusion that our consumptive use of plastic has finally caught up to us, and looks at what we can do about it.
Using state-of-the-art equipment, a group of activists, led by renowned dolphin trainer Ric O’Barry, infiltrate a cove near Taijii, Japan to expose both a shocking instance of animal abuse and a serious threat to human health.
YERT: Your Environmental Road Trip
2011 Heartland Film Festival Official Selection YERT: Your Environmental Road Trip – is a thought-provoking, inspiring, and sometimes hilarious, documentary about the courageous and creative individuals, groups, businesses and leaders of this country who are tackling the greatest environmental threats in history. Called into action by the ever increasing threats of planetary catastrophe, Mark Dixon, Ben Evans, and Julie Dingman Evans – upended their lives, pooled their collective life-savings and set off on a first-of-its-kind, 50-state, year-long journey of discovery to personalize sustainability and to answer a critical question: Are we doomed?
Luke, 25, is autistic and has lived a sheltered life with his grandparents. But his world is turned upside down when his grandmother dies and he is forced to live with his dysfunctional relatives who have no patience for him or his senile grandfather, whom they quickly force into a nursing home. Luke is left with his grandfather’s final semi-coherent words: “Get a job. Find a girl. Live your own life. Be a man!” For the first time in his life, Luke has a mission. He is about to embark on a quest.
In La Source, Haiti, water does not come easily. Villagers of this rural community must choose between a treacherous walk to retrieve clean water or drink contaminated water from a nearby river. Since he was a teenager, Josue Lajeunesse, with his brother Chrismedonne, have dreamt of channeling clean water from a spring in the mountains. In 1989, Josue moved to New Jersey where he found employment as a custodian at Princeton University. His custodial work and second job as a taxi driver, totaling close to 20 hours a day, allowed him to send money back to Haiti to support his extended family, but much more was needed to pay for a project to channel water from the mountain spring to their village.
Josue rallies the support of a group of Princeton students and a charity called Generosity Water. Money in hand, he and his brother work with the people of La Source to fulfill their dream to bring clean water to their village. La Source is not simply a movie about clean water and community transformation. It is a story of one man, empowered by a vision, who was able to ignite the passion of people thousands of miles away to change lives in La Source forever. Narrated by Don Cheadle.
When doctors diagnosed 19-year-old rock star Jason Becker with Lou Gehrig’s Disease, they said he would never make music again and that he wouldn’t live to see his 25th birthday. Twenty-two years later, without the ability to move or to speak, Jason is alive and making music with his eyes. It’s the incredible story of a guitar legend who refuses to give up on his dream of being a musician despite the most incredible odds. It is a story of dreams, love and the strength of the human spirit.
Erasing Hate 2012 Official Selection – Documentary Feature Erasing Hate is a remarkable story of transformation and redemption. In early 2009, Bryon Widner’s face, neck and hands were covered with intimidating, racist tattoos. It was then he began a series of painful and extensive laser tattoo removal procedures—twenty-five treatments over the course of more than a year and a half. But the tattoo removal was just the outward sign of an inner transformation.
This film profiles Chinese adoptees in contemporary America. Roughly 80,000 girls have been adopted from China since 1989—a decade after China implemented its One Child Policy. This film intimately follows four teenagers: Haley, Jenna, Ann and Fang. These four wise-beyond-their-years, yet typical American teens, reveal a heartbreaking sense of self-awareness as they attempt to answer the uniquely human question, “Who am I?” They meet and bond with other adoptees, some journey back to China to reconnect with the culture and some reach out to the orphaned girls left behind.
Let us know what you think about these films! Leave a comment below:
In 2012, Heartland awarded Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry with the Truly Moving Picture Award for its ability to inspire, educate and engage audiences. The film documents the inside story of a dissident for the digital age who inspires global audiences and blurs the boundaries of art and politics. First-time director Alison Klayman gained unprecedented access to Ai while working as a journalist in China. Her detailed portrait provides a nuanced exploration of contemporary China and one of its most compelling public figures.
Ai Weiwei, Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn, 1995/2009. Image courtesy of the artist.
Beginning April 5, Heartland community partner Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA) will showcase Ai Weiwei’s artwork in the special exhibit, “Ai Weiwei: According to What?” in the Allen Whitehill Clowes Special Exhibition Gallery. The special exhibition features over 30 works spanning more than 20 years, exploring universal topics of culture, history, politics and tradition. The exhibition will run through July 21.
Coinciding with the exhibit, IMA will be showingAi Weiwei: Never Sorry at The Toby over three days:
Thursday, May 16 at 6:30 p.m.
Friday, May 17 at 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 18 at 2:00 p.m.
Come early and see the exhibition to receive $1 off film admission at the IMA box office by showing your exhibition ticket stub.
Lincoln – Walt Disney Pictures
In a nation divided by war and the strong winds of change, President Abraham Lincoln pursues a course of action designed to end the war, unite the country and abolish slavery. With the moral courage and fierce determination to succeed, his choices during this critical moment will change the fate of generations to come.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey – New Line Cinema/Legendary Pictures
From Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Peter Jackson comes The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, the first of a trilogy of films adapting the enduringly popular masterpiece The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien.
Les Misérables – Universal Pictures
Set against the backdrop of 19th-century France, Les Misérables tells an enthralling story of broken dreams and unrequited love, passion, sacrifice and redemption—a timeless testament to the endurance of the human spirit. Ex-prisoner Jean Valjean is hunted for decades by the ruthless policeman Javert after he breaks parole. When Valjean agrees to care for factory worker Fantine’s young daughter, Cosette, their lives change forever.
The Heartland Roadshow will be traveling to Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church on Saturday, April 13, for a special screening of 2011 Heartland Film Festival Opening Night Event film The Way.
The Way is a powerful and inspirational story about family, friends, and the challenges we face while navigating this ever-changing and complicated world. Martin Sheen plays Tom, an American doctor who comes to St. Jean Pied de Port, France to collect the remains of his adult son (played by Emilio Estevez), killed in the Pyrenees in a storm while walking the Camino de Santiago, also known as The Way of Saint James. Rather than return home, Tom decides to embark on the historical pilgrimage to honor his son’s desire to finish the journey. What Tom doesn’t plan on is the profound impact the journey will have on him and his “California Bubble Life.” Inexperienced as a trekker, Tom soon discovers that he will not be alone on this journey.
A young Pakistani man is chasing corporate success on Wall Street. He finds himself embroiled in a conflict between his American Dream, a hostage crisis and the enduring call of his family’s homeland. Taking us through the culturally rich and beguiling worlds of New York, Lahore and Istanbul, The Reluctant Fundamentalist is a story about conflicting ideologies where perception and suspicion have the power to determine life or death.
The Truly Moving Picture Award jury selected the film based on its thought-provoking storyline and rich character development. Other elements, including the film’s soundtrack and the performance of lead actor Riz Ahmed, were strong deciding factors. The inspiring message that violence is not the answer, and that one does not have to blindly choose a side, resonated greatly with the jury.
The film opens wide April 26 and will be available On Demand April 30.