Opening Night Film
Writers: Emily V. Gordon, Kumail Nanjiani | Director: Michael Showalter
Based on the screenwriters’ real-life courtship: Pakistan-born comedian Kumail and grad student Emily fall in love, but they struggle with cultural differences and the unexpected impact of a mysterious illness. Featuring Kumail Nanjiani, Zoe Kazan, Holly Hunter, and Ray Romano.
Opening Family Film
Original Story: Brian Fee, Ben Queen, Eyal Podell, Jonathon E. Stewart | Screenplay: Kiel Murray, Bob Peterson, Mike Rich | Director: Brian Fee
Continuing NFF's opening day Disney•Pixar tradition! Lightning McQueen sets out to prove to a new generation of racers that he's still the best race car in the world. Featuring Owen Wilson, Cristela Alonzo, and Armie Hammer.
Closing Night Film
Directors: Bonni Cohen, Jon Shenk
More timely than ever, this follow-up to the Oscar-winning An Inconvenient Truth - a film which brought climate change into the popular consciousness a decade ago - charts Vice President Al Gore's continuing mission to solve our climate crisis before it's too late.
Writer/Director: Adam Rifkin
Former box office superstar Vic Edwards (Burt Reynolds) is forced to reassess his life when he is invited to a film festival to receive a lifetime achievement award. Featuring Ariel Winter, Chevy Chase, Clark Duke, and Ellar Coltrane.
Writer: Julie Rudd | Director: Alethea Jones
Four very different moms gather for a ladies’ night out that takes unpredictable but hilarious twists and turns. Featuring Katie Aselton, Toni Collette, Bridget Everett, Molly Shannon, Adam Scott, and Adam Levine.
Feature Films | Documentary
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Director: Pamela Yates
The third film in a 35-year trilogy which contributed to the downfall of Guatemala’s dictator. This sweeping story of resistance focuses on the nation’s indigenous Mayan population, poised to reimagine their society. Co-presented with Facing History and Ourselves.
Director: Ema Ryan Yamazaki
The story of Hans and Margret Rey, who fled Nazi-occupied Europe as refugees, carrying with them one of the most beloved children’s book characters of all time.
Feature Films | Narrative
Writer/Director: Jared Moshé
Aging sidekick Lefty Brown (Bill Pullman) has ridden with Wild West legend Eddie Johnson (Peter Fonda) his entire life. Forced out from his partner’s shadow, Lefty must confront the ugly realities of frontier justice. Featuring Kathy Baker, Jim Caviezel, and Tommy Flanagan.
Writer/Director: Michael Almereyda
In the near future, Marjorie, suffering from dementia, is told the story of her life by a hologram in the form of her late husband. What would we remember, and what would we forget, if given the chance? Featuring Jon Hamm, Geena Davis, Lois Smith, and Tim Robbins.
Narrative Shorts: Through the Fire
Looking at life’s challenges.
Director: Micah Perta | Writers: Lauren Sanderson Kilgore, Traci Terrill | Story by: Micah Perta, Traci Terrill | Featuring Olivia Wilde
Narcolepsy, siblings, nudity, and senility combine for the best kind of road trip. Or do they?
Writer/Director: Holly Voges | Writer: Lisa Joyce
A cautionary tale about man's possessive relationship with nature, as told by two children over a campfire.
Writers: Chris Carfizzi, Hilary Mann | Director: Corydon Wagner
A guy’s simple injury has an unexpected and profound effect on his special evening with his girlfriend.
Writer/Director: Jeannie Donohoe | Featuring Rick Fox, Tye White, Jamie McShane
A rookie trying out for the boys’ basketball team makes an impression, attracting jealousy fromthe team star. Featuring former L.A. Laker Rick Fox and Tye White (The People vs. O.J. Simpson).
Writer/Director: Willy Berliner
When a man finds a family of strangers in his house who claim to have bought the place, he agrees to let them stay until they can get to the bottom of the mix-up. They never leave.
Writer/Director: David Brundige
A film festival assigns two directors the same hotel room, but one has a secret.
Writer/Directors: Charlotte Barrett, Sean Fallon | Featuring Lily Rabe and Eric Ladin
After suffering a miscarriage, a young couple goes ahead with their plan to attend a local comicconvention. Featuring Lily Rabe (Miss Stevens, NFF 2016) and Eric Ladin (Boardwalk Empire).
Writer/Director: Aude Cuenod
On the east side of Detroit an 11-year- old boy, grieving over the loss of his best friend,encounters an artist who makes art out of abandoned objects.
Narrative Shorts: Feeling Connected
Exploring the universal desire to connect.
Writer/Director: Joschka Laukeninks
A meditation on how the things we love and the things we make remain ours only briefly.
Writer/Director: Ena Sendijarević
Absurd situations arise as a Bosnian refugee family tries to make a new home in a small village in the Netherlands in 1994.
Writer/Director: A.J. Al Thani
A father takes his two sons hunting in the desert with unexpected results.
Writer/Director: Saman Hosseinpuor
At odds with his wife and seeking autonomy, a man makes a life-changing decision.
Writer/Director: Matthew Dixon | Featuring Lili Taylor
After a breakdown, architecture’s brightest star (Lili Taylor) unveils the model for her mostbrilliant design.
Writer/Director: Dawid Ullgren
Hans goes to a gay nightclub and becomes embroiled in a game of control with Andrej.
Director: Garrett Bradley
With her fiancé in jail, single mother Alone Watts decides whether to go through with theirwedding.
Director: Alexandra Liveris
The most isolated Greek island is transformed from a sleepy tourist destination to an outpostfor Syrian refugees.
Director: Maris Curran
Director Maris Curran (Five Nights in Maine, NFF 2016) creates a beautiful portrait of the life and creative world of Atlanta-based artist and musician Lonnie Holley.
Director: Nina Horowitz
A Jewish athlete is barred from competition during Hitler’s 1936 Olympic Games, despite beingthe best high-jumper in Germany and arguably the world.
Director: Ifunanya Maduka
In 2014, 276 teenage girls gathered for exams in Chibok, Nigeria—by dawn, nearly all had disappeared, and their school had burned to the ground. Jessica, an escapee, shares her haunting account of a friendship violently interrupted by Boko Haram.
Documentary Shorts: Reaching For the Stars
True stories about encountering the unexpected.
Director: Nathan Truesdell
Cleveland attempts to overcome its nickname, “The Mistake by the Lake,” by launching a bunch of balloons.
Director: Corinne Botz
Actors are used to train student doctors, offering a look at empathy in medicine. Neurologist Alice Flaherty plays both doctor and patient.
Writer/Director: Zoe Garcia
Explore everyday life in the Havana park where the first Wi-Fi system allowing Cubans to access the Internet was installed.
Writer/Directors: Mario Furloni and Kate McLean
A bio-hacker seeks to cure himself of digestive issues by swapping his microbiome with a donor’s using a controversial technique.
Writer/Director: Nathan Reich
A filmmaker sets out to understand the world of live-action role play through the eyes of a teenage boy and discovers things are more complicated than expected.
Directors: Maximilien Van Aertryck, Axel Danielson
Individuals must choose whether to jump or climb down a 33-foot diving tower in this entertaining study of people in a vulnerable position.
Some of the best in contemporary animation. Suitable for ages 12 and up.
Writers/Directors: Laura Naylor, Kristen Kee
In a re-imagining of a Melville classic, an unassuming Wall Street lawyer finds himself beset by a new employee, Bartleby, who refuses to work.
Writer/Director: Frodo Kuipers | Writers: Merlijn Passier, Rudi Brekelmans
Two bullets fall in love, mid-air, en route to their targets.
Writer/Director: Adrienne Dowling, Writers: Jenna Jovi, Hélène Sifre
A broken-hearted witch hauls in a merman while fishing and he falls in love with her, releasing her broken heart.
Writer/Director: Robin Joseph
A curious fox goes in search of an elusive whale.
Writer/Director: Natia Nikolashvili
In a forest, a young girl and her reindeer friend encounter another world.
Writer/Director: Anushka Kishani Naanayakkara, Writer: Elena Ruscombe-King
A composed love affair in stop-motion is set to music.
Writers/Directors: Anne Baillod, Jean Faravel
Adapted from the Hans Christian Andersen fable, this is the tale of a young merchant who tries to sell matches but ends up burning them all.
Writers: Malin Ahlin, Hans Åke Gabrielsson | Director: Nima Yousefi
Wolves living in a magical forest love the moon so much, they decide to join her.
Writer/Director: Bastiaan Schravendeel
After 19-year old Esra misses her train, she kills time playing a flashy game on her smartphone, but a vintage Rubik’s Cube vies for her attention.
Writer/Director: Ned Wenlock | Writer: Christopher Brandon
The lone stag in a musical forest lacks a certain something to power his instrument.
Live action and animated stories for children 4 and up.
Writers/Directors: Tatiana Poliektova, Filippo Rivetti
A surprising tale involves crabs, pineapple, flotsam, and a discarded item transformed.
Writer/Director: Adam Marko-Nord
A flying hippo seeks a pond. A little koala wants to hop like the kangaroos, and a raucous mob of elephants throw a party. These and other wild times in the animal kingdom bounce to the jazz of Swedish quintet Oddjob.
Writer/Director: Peter Stanley-Ward, Writer: Natalie Conway
Helped by flying mechanical creatures she’s made, a young inventor joins forces with a pint-sized superhero to defeat the town bullies.
Writer/Director: Lena von Döhren
High up in a maple tree a little bird cherishes and nurtures the green leaves of its home. Then a hungry caterpillar sets its sights on the appetizing leaves.
Writer/Director: Erica Liu
Inspired by a true story: a whale cast out by his own kind searches for a friend who shares his unique song.
Writers: Eoin Doran, Nathaniel Price, Director: Liam Harris
A man lives a balanced life, perched atop a hill.
Writer/Director: Marlies van der Wel, Writer: Ruben Picavet
A bird with an unusual tweet and a hefty girth can’t quite find his happy place.
Writer/Director: Julia Pott
From a forthcoming Cartoon Network© series. Glitter glue, singing marshmallows, and dance contests figure prominently in Julia Pott’s hilarious take on adolescence at its most awkward.
Writer/Director: Pulkit Datta
Stuck in her dad’s boring lunch meeting, little Ella discovers the curious case of all the mustaches.
Special Screening | THE ILLUMINATION
Director: Tom Scott, Dan Honan | Producer: Tom Scott, Pamela Duevel | USA / 2017 / 19 min / Documentary
In a remarkable twist of fate, the decades-long effort of one blind person, Gordon Gund, makes it possible for another, Yannick Duwe, to see.
Beach Screening | 30th Anniversary of LA BAMBA
Free community event at Children’s Beach with live music, interview with LA BAMBA star Esai Morales, followed by screening.
Writer/Director: Luis Valdez | USA / 1987 / 108 MIN
Biographical story of the rise from nowhere of early rock and roll singer Ritchie Valens who died at age 17 in a plane crash with Buddy Holly and the Big Bopper. Featuring Lou Diamond Phillips, Esai Morales, and Joe Pantoliano.