The Global Film Initiative is coming back to Salt Lake City for its ninth year, presenting 11 films from 10 developing nations that provide unique glimpses into parts of the world most Americans never see.
The program runs for a week, Friday, Sept. 7, through Thursday, Sept. 13, at the Broadway Centre Cinemas, 111 E. 300 South, Salt Lake City.
Ten new films make up the bulk of the program. They are:
“Amnesty (Amnistia)” • (Albania, directed by Bujar Alimani) A man and a woman, spouses of inmates in the same prison, form a close relationship that is threatened when a prisoner amnesty is offered.
“Craft (Riscado)” • (Brazil, directed by Gustavo Pizzi) A struggling actress, getting by for years by dressing as movie icons for private events, gets an audition for a rare opportunity.
“Fat, Bald, Short Man (Gordo, Calvo y Bajito)” • (Colombia, directed by Carlos Osuna) A lonely notary-office employee finds his boss taking an interest in him, in spite of his shyness, in this tale rendered in rotoscope-style animation.
“The Finger (El Dedo)” • (Argentina, directed by Sergio Teubal) When a town grows large enough to have mayoral elections, a dead candidate’s severed finger becomes an icon of leadership in this comedy-drama.
“Grey Matter (Matière Grise)” • (Rwanda, directed by Kivu Ruhorahoza) A movie-within-a-movie about a filmmaker trying to make a drama about siblings dealing with the aftermath of Rwanda’s genocide — and, after finding no support from government agencies, going to a loan shark to finance his film.
“Mourning (Soog)” • (Iran, directed by Morteza Farshbaf) A deaf couple drive their nephew home to Tehran without telling him of a terrible incident that affects him.
“Pegasus (Pegase)” • (Morocco, directed by Mohamed Mouftakir) A psychological thriller in which a psychiatrist treats a traumatized and pregnant woman, who flashes back to her childhood being raised as the son of a tribal chief.
“The Prize (El Premio)” • (Argentina, directed by Paula Markovitch) A 7-year-old girl, recently escaped from Buenos Aires with her mother in a military dictatorship, gets involved in a patriotic essay contest sponsored by the army that may have “disappeared” her father.
“Qarantina” • (Iraq, directed by Oday Rasheed) A troubled family tale involving an incestuous patriarch, his pregnant daughter, his young second wife, his preteen son and a boarder — who’s a contract killer.
“Toll Booth (Gise Memuru)” • (Turkey, directed by Tolga Caraçelik) A toll-booth attendant, on the verge of a breakdown from the stress of his father trying to marry him off, begins a flirtatious relationship with a woman who drives by his remote outpost each day — but is she real or a figment of his imagination?
“Stolen Life (Sheng Si Jie)” (2005, China, directed by Li Shaohong) • Rounding out the program is a “Chairman’s Choice” film, picked from past years’ entries. This year’s pick tells of a depressed young woman, accepted to college, who has a fateful encounter with a delivery boy.
For program details and ticket prices, visit www.saltlakefilmsociety.org.
Sean P. Means