06-24 November 2019

Festivals & Events

HIFF Blog

November 13, 2019

#NewAmericanPerspectives: 5 Questions for THE PERFECT CANDIDATE director Haifaa Al Mansour

The Vilcek Foundation has partnered with the Hawai’i International Film Festival to re-launch the “New American Perspectives” program. The program is the product of a partnership between the Vilcek Foundation and HIFF, focused on highlighting the contributions of foreign-born filmmakers and creative directors to cinema and multimedia arts in the United States.

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November 13, 2019

#NewAmericanPerspectives: 5 Questions for GO BACK TO CHINA director, Emily Ting

The Vilcek Foundation has partnered with the Hawai’i International Film Festival to re-launch the “New American Perspectives” program. The program is the product of a partnership between the Vilcek Foundation and HIFF, focused on highlighting the contributions of foreign-born filmmakers and creative directors to cinema and multimedia arts in the United States.

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November 13, 2019

#NewAmericanPerspectives: 5 Questions for Chef Jenny Dorsey, Creative Director of ASIAN IN AMERICA

The Vilcek Foundation has partnered with the Hawai’i International Film Festival to re-launch the “New American Perspectives” program. The program is the product of a partnership between the Vilcek Foundation and HIFF, focused on highlighting the contributions of foreign-born filmmakers and creative directors to cinema and multimedia arts in the United States.

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November 1, 2019

HIFF39 KAU KA HŌKŪ NOMINEE: 5 Questions with Joe Odagiri, director of THEY SAY NOTHING STAYS THE SAME

After its world premiere in the Venice International Film Festival, THEY SAY NOTHINGS STAYS THE SAME is continuing its successful festival run here in Hawaiʻi with its U.S. premiere.

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October 31, 2019

HIFF39 Takes It To The Extreme

If you aren't over the Halloween season yet, HIFF39 has just the films for you. Programming intern Adrian Alarilla goes through this year's HIFF EXTREME, filled with tales of death and mortality, thrills and chills from around the world. From wintery horrors to bloody thrillers to indigenous visions of the apocalypse, HIFF is taking it to the extreme.

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October 30, 2019

HIFF39 FILM FOR THOUGHT - Meeting the Fierce Urgency of Now Through Cinema

FILM FOR THOUGHT, presented in part with the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities, will feature six feature films, focused on the theme ‘Change Makers’. The first screening of each film will be followed by a special post-screening scholar led discussion, as well as essays published in a companion booklet that will be distributed at all FFT screenings.

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October 30, 2019

The Infinite Charm of Indian Cinema

Kanani Lyons writes on this year’s SPOTLIGHT ON INDIA which presents three films that showcase the creative capacity of modern Bollywood, an industry traditionally known for producing films of lurid colors, cultural dances, and beautiful songs despite the varying genres and subtler films. These three films showcase the evolved art-form that combines the charm of Bollywood films and the simplicity of every-day life and human emotion -- ultimately colliding style and story.

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October 29, 2019

HIFF39 KAU KA HŌKŪ NOMINEE: 5 Questions with Johnny Ma, director of TO LIVE TO SING

In China’s present era of rapid modernization, concerns arise for many over the disappearance of lasting traditionalist cultural art forms, in particular the opera. Once considered a central institution for entertainment and even social commentary, there might be a diminishing appreciation for the art, especially among younger Chinese generations. In TO LIVE TO SING, director Johnny Ma explores this process.

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October 29, 2019

HIFF39 KAU KA HŌKŪ NOMINEE: 5 Questions with Kerwin Go, director of MINA-ANUD

If three tons of cocaine were to wash up on your shore, what would you do? Such is the premise of MINA-ANUD, a dark comedic thriller from the Philippines directed by Kerwin Go and nominated for HIFF39's KAU KA HŌKŪ Award.

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October 29, 2019

HIFF39 KAU KA HŌKŪ NOMINEE: 5 Questions with Kim Yoon-seok, director of ANOTHER CHILD

We’ve all heard the old aphorism expressed by every journeyed actor in film: “What I really want to do is direct…” What about those who somehow manage to fill the director’s chair and still remain in front of the camera?

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October 29, 2019

HIFF39 KAU KA HŌKŪ NOMINEE: 5 Questions with Hsieh Pei-Ju, director of HEAVY CRAVING

After winning the Audience Award at the Taipei Film Festival and premiering internationally at Busan this year, HEAVY CRAVING is building momentum as one of the best films out of Taiwan in 2019. HIFF39 is joining in the parade critical recognition by including it as one of the nominees of our prestigious KAU KA HŌKŪ Award.

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GOODBYE MOTHER director Dinh Le Minh Trinh (left) and screenwriter Nhi Bui (right)

October 29, 2019

HIFF39 KAU KA HŌKŪ NOMINEE: 5 Questions with Dinh Le Minh Trinh and Nhi Bui, the creative minds behind GOODBYE MOTHER

A new wave of films have emerged out of Southeast Asia that apply a more realistic, earnest understanding of queer experiences. Recently premiering worldwide at the Busan International Film Festival and making its North American debut at HIFF39, Vietnam’s GOODBYE MOTHER is certainly an antithesis to the often caricatured, flamboyant representation seen in antecedent films.

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October 29, 2019

HIFF39 KAU KA HŌKŪ NOMINEE: 5 Questions with Ben Lawrence, director of HEARTS AND BONES

As part of our Premieres lineup in 2019, HEARTS AND BONES is already gaining a lot of attention and stands as a major contender as one of the most critically acclaimed Australian films of the year.

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October 29, 2019

HIFF39 KAU KA HŌKŪ NOMINEE: 5 Questions with Mattie Do, director of THE LONG WALK

Mattie Do’s accomplishments as a pioneer of Laotian cinema are quite impressive, and she’s only just getting warmed up. Her first film CHANTALY was the first to ever screen outside of Laos, and her follow-up film DEAREST SISTER was Laos’ official submission to the 90th Academy Awards.

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October 29, 2019

HIFF39 KAU KA HŌKŪ NOMINEE: 5 Questions with Diane Paragas, director of YELLOW ROSE

After its world premiere at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival in May 2019, YELLOW ROSE has experienced a terrific festival run thus far. Just weeks before its premiere at the Hawaii International Film Festival, worldwide distribution rights of the film were acquired by Sony Pictures.

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October 27, 2019

SPOTLIGHT ON SOUTH KOREA: A Multi-Sighted Experience at HIFF39

With the awards and box-office success of Bong Joon-ho's PARASITE leading the pack, South Korean cinema is taking a greater presence on the world stage. Program coordinator Lee Ngo writes about HIFF39's South Korean film selections.

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October 27, 2019

HIFF39’s SPOTLIGHT ON JAPAN … Needs Another Spotlight

With a whopping 19 Japanese films at the Festival this year, Programming coordinator Lee Ngo offers a helpful guide to make up your mind to see what Japanese film fits your tastes with some unique genre groupings.

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October 26, 2019

HIFF39: Animating the Fantastic!

Programming intern Adrian Alarilla blogs about the amazing and very diverse animated feature films—from India, France, Hong Kong and Japan—screening at HIFF39.

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October 24, 2019

NEW AMERICAN PERSPECTIVES Returning to HIFF39 Program Features Masterclass With Filmmaker Haifaa al-Mansour

The Vilcek Foundation is excited to present the New American Perspectives program at HIFF39 presented by Halekulani. The mission of the program is to highlight the contributions of immigrant filmmakers and content creators in contemporary cinema and multimedia arts in the United States.

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October 24, 2019

HIFF39 takes a cinematic and award winning Eurotrip

Programming intern Adrian Alarilla serves as your tour guide by highlighting the European destinations that were settings for the award winning films that comprise the Festival's strongest European lineup in years.

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October 24, 2019

HIFF39 MIXED PLATE section highlights foodie films from around the world

Kanani Lyons writes on this year’s MIXED PLATE program where five films focus on foods from different areas of the world, leaving audiences hungry, perhaps a little pensive, but ultimately satisfied.

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October 20, 2019

HIFF39 PACIFIC SHOWCASE adds special VR focus on Aboriginal Indigenous Works

Along with our continued partnership with Pacific Islanders in Communications (PIC) in presenting the annual HIFF PACIFIC SHOWCASE, we have added a new programming layer to this section with a focus in Aboriginal indigenous works in the Virtual Reality realm!

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October 20, 2019

HIFF39: A Long Walk Across Southeast Asia

Programming intern Adrian Alarilla continues his overlook of the HIFF39 program by highlighting this year's SOUTHEAST ASIAN SHOWCASE. Three of the films are in competition for the KAU KA HŌKŪ AWARD.

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October 17, 2019

HIFF39 MADE IN HAWAI‘I expands with 'Ohina Filmmakers Lab Films

MADE IN HAWAI‘I is HIFF’s annual section that presents films right from our backyard. This year’s crop of films is short film heavy, thanks in partnership with the 'Ohina Short Film Showcase, as they transition fully into artist development via their Filmmakers Lab, and HIFF takes charge of exhibiting their films.

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October 17, 2019

HIFF39 SPOTLIGHT ON TAIWAN: Breaking Patriarchal and Technological Barriers

This year's SPOTLIGHT ON TAIWAN exemplifies the boundaries that are being challenged in making the island nation a cutting edge destination through investment in VR, as well as putting female-centric stories onto the forefront as a reaction to the #MeToo movement.

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October 17, 2019

The Objective of Objectivity: HIFF39 Documentary Films Matter More than Ever

Program coordinator Lee Ngo looks at the renewed importance of the documentary format, especially in a time of political turbulence, the tribalization of opinion and how documentarians fight the good fight for the integrity of their work to seek out the truth in a world of "fake news."

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October 16, 2019

HIFF39 SPOTLIGHT ON HONG KONG: Past, Present & Future

HIFF is honored to partner with the Hong Kong Economic Trade Office of San Francisco (HKETO SF), to honor the past, present, and future of Hong Kong cinema, which includes honoring master action director John Woo, who will present a special 30th anniversary screening of THE KILLER.

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October 15, 2019

HIFF39: Will the real China please step into the light?

Program coordinator Lee Ngo writes on this year's 'Spotlight on China,' presenting six films that represent a small slice of modernity in a big country.

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October 15, 2019

HIFF39: PREMIERES section highlights the hottest films this awards season

The PREMIERES section presents the hottest films that are generating major buzz this awards season. With world premieres in Venice and Toronto, these major films, from distributors ranging from Fox Searchlight, A24, Lionsgate, Amazon Studios and Netflix, have a great shot to be on Oscar ballots in a few months.

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A scene from AND THEN WE DANCED, screening at HIFF39.

October 15, 2019

LGBT+ at HIFF39: A Splash of Turquoise on the Silver Screen

HIFF39's programming intern Adrian Alarilla will regularly blog about his personal views on what to see at the Festival. In his first blog post, he writes about the touching, inspiring, and award-winning LGBT+ films that will screen this year.

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October 15, 2019

HIFF39 Sneak Peek: PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE, Thursday, 10/17

The HIFF39 Members Sneak Peek is PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE, scheduled for Thursday, October 17, 7pm at Regal Dole Cannery Cinemas 18. Although a free screening, tickets must be booked. RSVP Now!

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