Mill Valley Film Festival 2008

September 11, 2008 by  

For over 30 years, the Mill Valley Film Festival has brought together filmmakers and film lovers in one of California’s most stunning and beautiful settings–Marin County, which sits across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco. This is a prestigious event that showcases features, documentaries, shorts and children’s films from around the world. There are no winners or losers. Just great films.

The festival pulls no punches with its opening-night films: “Religulous” is a comic documentary with Bill Maher that casts a critical eye on organized religion, and “The Secret Life of Bees,” based on Sue Monk Kidd’s best-selling novel. “Religulous” director Larry Charles and “Bees” star Dakota Fanning will attend the screenings.

 

Running Oct. 2 to 12 at three main venues in Marin County, the festival offers more than 200 films from around the world – though festival programmers note that this year is particularly strong in entries from Asia, Ireland, Poland and South Africa.

Closing night also delivers two features: Tim Disney’s “American Violet,” starring Woodard and based on the Texas case of a white district attorney accused of racism in the arrest of a black woman; and Israeli director Eran Riklis’ “Lemon Tree,” a drama set on the Palestinian border.

New at Mill Valley this year is the Active Cinema program, which allows audiences to hook up with the causes espoused in many of the festival’s offerings. For example, there will be a tree-planting event, co-sponsored with Friends of the Urban Forest and Goodscapes, on Oct. 4.

The festival presents live musical performances at the 142 Throckmorton Theatre in connection with several movies, including “The Wrecking Crew,” the latter about a group of 1960s studio musicians who worked on some of the era’s biggest hits.

Other notable events: The festival’s 14th annual Children’s FilmFestruns Oct. 4 to 11; director Joe Wright (“Atonement”) will offer a master class Oct. 4; and, in a “post-festival presentation” Nov. 18 at San Francisco’s Castro Theatre, Tony Curtis gets a tribute.

 

Mill Valley Film Festival: Oct. 2-12 at the Sequoia Theater and 142 Throckmorton Theatre in Mill Valley and the Smith Rafael Film Center in San Rafael. Tickets $10-$12.50, on sale Sept. 19.

*much of the above information was derived from the San Francisco Chronicle.

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