Like with all of the St. Louis International Film Festivals (SLIFF), the 26th version makes it very easy again to be overwhelmed by the number of films presented. Ready for this year’s astounding stats?
Over 2400 submissions, plus a few hundred films from distributors, sales agents and studios.
After careful vetting, these are the winners:
372 films from 64 countries
When I introduce SLIFF to someone who is not familiar with it, I tell them that this is a fantastic way to travel the world and a rare chance to watch films that will possibly never reappear in St. Louis (nor possibly in the US)…
… even if they are masterpieces!
And every year, such pieces make their way to SLIFF,
UNFORGETTABLE FILMS! (…)
[WITH 3 GEMS!!] Again, the St. Louis wow-festival is a trip! This year, SLIFF after 2300 submissions – not counting distributors and studio considerations – will screen 420 films from 72 countries! Below are *some* recommendations – I am missing many but my time is restricted at this time. 1.The good bets that I have not seen have no check marks. 2.Those I can vouch for are marked with an [X] 3. Those I very much appreciate: [X][X] 3.Those stand-outs, the gems, have an [X][X][X] …
The best St. Louis International Film Festival in memory! Three of my favorite films: “In Transit” – The last of the great direct cinema documentary filmmakers, the recently deceased Albert Maysles (Salesman, Gimme Shelter, Grey Gardens, Running Fence…)… an eloquent love letter to humanity.
With a rarely seen fragility and gentleness, this tour de force of a film allows us to sense how precious each life is. Each individual’s aspirations and vulnerability is magically brought to light: one of the most touching film experience at this festival! — “The Fool/Durak” – … In the midst of the squalor of a small Russian town, through its understated acting and gritty realism, a suspense as worthy as that of a James Bond film, slowly but surely, takes shape. How institutions and the self-serving individuals that populate them can hold onto their morally bankrupt power… — “Embrace of the Serpent” – By following their actual diaries, this sumptuous and sensual film – some would call it an hallucinatory trip – pays tribute to two explorers and their guides as they venture into unknown regions of Colombia. One of the most astonishing and luminous film at the St. Louis International Film Festival! […]
“It is estimated that every hour three species are lost forever; that’s 70 a day, 500 a week, 27,000 species ever year… which would make it the fastest mass extinction in our planet’s history. There is no doubt about the cause, it’s us. ” — Andrew Marr – “The sixth global mass extinction…” “We are into the opening stages of a human-caused biotic holocaust – a wholesale elimination of species – that could leave the planet impoverished for at least five million years. — Norman Myers —> the BBC 2 series […]
It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see. — Henry David Thoreau. My review: Like Don McCullin, another photographer who has been on the alert for a very long time, Sebastião Salgado cares very much about the entire planet. SalgadoSML Salgado with the statuesque features of a Greek oracle figure looks straight at us; what is to be revealed?
As he plunges over and over into the “heart of darkness” without renouncing its splendor, it is as if his own heart’s chambers expand each time. […]
Before taking his vow of fasting during the UN Warsaw Conference on Global Warming: “To anyone who continues to deny the reality that is climate change, I dare you to get off your ivory tower and away from the comfort of you armchair. I dare you to go to the islands of the Pacific, the islands of the Caribbean and the islands of the Indian ocean and see the impacts of rising sea levels; to the mountainous regions of the Himalayas and the Andes to see communities confronting glacial floods, to the Arctic where communities grapple with the fast dwindling polar ice caps, to the large deltas of the Mekong, the Ganges, the Amazon, and the Nile where lives and livelihoods are drowned, to the hills of Central America that confronts similar monstrous hurricanes, to the vast savannas of Africa where climate change has likewise become a matter of life and death as food and water becomes scarce. Not to forget the massive hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico and the eastern seaboard of North America. And if that is not enough, you may want to pay a visit to the Philippines right now… In Doha, we asked ‘If not us then who? If not now, then when? If not here, then where?’ (borrowed from Philippine student leader Ditto Sarmiento during Martial Law – Ed. AND borrowed from Hillel, the famous rabbi).” Integral Transcription Included [ …]