Cinequest 18 blazing new trails

In its relatively short existence of 18 years, and its proximity to San Francisco’s many festivals (including the granddaddy of them all, the 51-year-old International Film Festival), San Jose’s Cinequest has staked out a claim to innovation and unusual programming.

The 2008 festival, announced this week, selected 153 feature and short films from among 1,800 submissions, presenting 37 U.S., North American and world feature premieres, in three venues, between Feb. 27 and March 9. More than 100 first-time, emerging film artists are represented from 34 countries.

Two American films bracket the festival, opening with Paul Leuer’s “Eden Court” (world premiere) and closing with Charles Oliver’s “Take,” featuringMinnie Driver and Jeremy Renner.

The festival’s Latino Film Showcase includes Esteban Sapir’s “La Antena” (The Aerial), from Argentina; Andrew James’ “Una vida mejor” (A Better Life), U.S.-Mexico; Eva Norvind’s “Nacido Sin” (Born Without), Iván Ávila Dueñas’ “Enlightened Blood,” Juan Patricio Riveroll’s “Opera,” Jesus Magaña Vázquez’s “Once Upon a Time Maria,” and Sergio Umansky’s “It’s Better If Gabriela Doesn’t Die” — all from Mexico; and Pere Portabella’s “The Silence Before Bach” (SpainGermany).

The San Jose organization is the first in the world to offer online downloads of feature films in

DVD/HD quality. Beginning with Cinequest 14, in 2004, the festival has been available live in theaters and online.

“When we first introduced Cinequest Online in 2004, many people said it would never work,” Cinequest co-founder and executive director Halfdan Hussey said. “But we’ve seen great success with online distribution over the years, and of course now, we’re even seeing the studios doing it.”

Cinequest’s Maverick Awards this year go to actor John Leguizamo (“Moulin Rouge,” “E.R.,” “Ice Age”), writers Bobby Moresco (“Million Dollar Baby,” “Crash”) and Michael Arndt (“Little Miss Sunshine”).

“Our mission has always been to empower the Maverick,” Hussey says. “The mainstream film industry can be slow to try new technologies and distribution models. By definition, Maverick artists are early adopters, and we’re here to help them think beyond the traditional boundaries of how films are made, marketed and delivered.”

artsentertainmentOther Arts

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Lakeshore Elementary School was closed in March shortly before SFUSD closed all schools due to coronavirus concerns. The district is now working to prepare all elementary schools to reopen by mid-January.<ins> (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
School district preparing buildings for hybrid learning

SFUSD plans to use 72 elementary schools and 12 early education sites for first phase of reopening

There have been at least 142 confirmed cases of COVID-19 among workers at San Francisco International Airport. <ins>(Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
Supes back SFO worker healthcare legislation despite airline, business opposition

Costs of ‘Health Airport Ordinance’ in dispute, with estimates ranging from $8.4 M to $163 M annually

Thankfully, playgrounds that were closed due to the pandemic during the summer have reopened.<ins> (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
The perils of parenting, COVID-style

At long last, it’s OK to take your little one out to play

Ten candidates are running for a seat on the Board of Trustees of the San Francisco Community College District.. (Courtesy photos)
Strong leadership needed as City College faces multiple crises

Ten candidates vying for four seats on CCSF board

City officials closed San Francisco County Jail No. 4 on the top floor of the Hall of Justice at 850 Bryant St. in September, reducing the number of beds in the jail system by about 400. 
Kevin N. Hume/
S.F. Examiner
SF jail closure prompts doctor to call for release of more inmates

Reduced space increases risk of COVID-19 spreading among those in custody

Most Read