HIFF41 PROGRAM GUIDE

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  • United States
    7 DAYS
    New American Perspectives
    anemptytextlline
    Ravi (Karan Soni) and Rita (Geraldine Viswanathan) meet on a date arranged by their Indian parents. He imagines his future wife as someone traditional, wholesome and definitely vegetarian. She can't imagine anything worse, but has to keep up the ruse to please her conservative mother. When a shelter in place order forces them to quarantine together until the situation calms down, the pair have to confront parts of each other - and themselves - that they had previously kept hidden, and to learn what it means to care for one another when the world is turned upside down. Creatively shot over a week in the summer of 2021, 7 DAYS is a heartfelt and hilarious take on human intimacy in an age of uncertainty and social transformation. Directed with confidence under challenging conditions by newcomer Roshan Sethi, 7 DAYS presents a charming and relatable time capsule of life in the present moment, wrapped up as a thoughtful reflection on traditional Indian values in contemporary America. -Duncan Caillard This film is presented as part of the New American Perspectives program presented by the Vilcek Foundation. HIFF will be presenting a special LIVE online Master Class with Director/Writer Roshan Sethi, Writer/Actor Karan Soni, and Actress Geraldine Viswanathan on SATURDAY NOVEMBER 13TH at 3:00PM HST. Please CLICK HERE for more information about how to join the conversation.
  • A BALANCE hero image
    Japan
    A BALANCE
    Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    When a sensational news story hits the headlines about a student's suicide after alleged assault by her teacher, it is not long before the teacher also takes his own life. Upon learning of the case, intrepid documentary filmmaker Yuko strikes out to learn the truth behind the incident for a new television special. In search of truth, what she finds instead is collateral damage. Two families' lives torn apart, first by the loss of their loved ones, and secondly by their ostracization in the community. The teacher's family having been forced into hiding, after being terrorized online and in the streets. As Yuko struggles to eke out a balanced story for her film, an incident close to home shatters her worldview and leaves her questioning her own motives. This sophomore feature from director Yujiro Harumoto is a gripping, searing indictment of a culture of shame, with twists and turns that will keep you hooked until the end. -Anna Page
  • United States
    A BOY'S JOURNEY: CROSSING THE ALENUIHAHA CHANNEL
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    On August 6, 2020, eleven-year-old Bobo Gallagher became the first person ever to cross the Alenuihaha Channel on a wing and a foil and only the second documented solo crossing of that crossing in history. This is his story.
  • A HERO hero image
    Iran
    A HERO
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Does a good deed ever go unpunished? A master at weaving pristinely entangled webs that promise to loom for decades to come, Asghar Farhadi returns to the Festival with A HERO, co-winner of this year's Cannes Grand Prix, and Farhadi's most singular and shattering film since his Oscar-winning A SEPARATION (2011). Rahim (the brilliant Amir Jadidi) is a calligrapher who was imprisoned when he could not repay a mounting debt. While Rahim is on a two-day release from his medium-security penitentiary, his girlfriend, Farkhondeh (Sahar Goldoust) presents him with a golden opportunity that will secure his release. Once he becomes a so-called free man, Rahim is flanked by his family - including a vulnerable son from a previous marriage - his adoring admirers, his weary debtors, and even his former jailers, while mounting expectations surround him like a pile of bricks. Through impeccable plot twists that play out like a life-or-death game of snakes and ladders, our hero's days of freedom come to feel numbered. Farhadi's richly textured take on gossip, social media, and society's collective downfall is funnelled through his honed knack for turning an individual story into a powerful metaphor for an entire nation. In the hands of an accomplished scenarist such as Farhadi, the deceptively simple dilemma at the film's core is imprinted with the director's incomparable interpretations of tragedy and the slippery slopes of morality. While the lucky may be dumbfounded that what may appear like a string of misfortunes in Rahim's life could suddenly land him between a rock and a hard place, most people already know that nothing in this world is free. -TIFF
  • Japan,United States
    A LIFE IN PIECES: THE DIARY AND LETTERS OF STANLEY...
    HIFF XR Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This experience will be FREE to the public and will be available in-person at the Entrepreneurs Sandbox NOV 20 & 21 from 12:00PM – 6:00PM. Visitors are REQUIRED to register in advance for a time-slot to participate. This cutting-edge media project brings to life the wartime diary of Stanley Hayami, a Japanese-American teenager imprisoned with his family during WWII at the Heart Mountain camp in Wyoming. Through virtual reality technology, Stanley’s writings and drawings literally come alive using live-action characters, Quill 3D animation, and photogrammetry of real barracks. Viewers are invited to actually enter the rugged living conditions where the Hayami family lived as we hear Stanley describe with poignant optimism the difficult reality he faces imprisoned behind barbed wire. We also travel to the battlefields of Europe with Stanley who is plucked out of the camp and drafted to serve in the highly decorated 442nd Regimental Combat Team. Refusal to go would mean a federal prison sentence.
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    French Polynesia
    A MOMENT WITH THE ARTIST TIM MCKENNA
    Surf Cinema
    anemptytextlline
    Located at the southern tip of the island of Tahiti, the "Te Pari" a preserved territory an only accessible by the sea Is place of inspiration for the photographer Tim Mckenna in search of wilderness.
  • United States
    A NICKNAME
    Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Breaking the fourth wall, Sean tells the true child- hood story of how he came by his nickname after immigrating to America from India. By examining the implications of moving to a new country, Sean recounts a tale filled with deception, fraud - and even pink shoes.
  • ACM UHM Showcase
    ACM UHM Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    PLAYS WITH: AGAPE | Directors: Justin Kimata, Christian Lee BLOOM | Director: Desirene Gamboa DAY AND NIGHT | Director: Jewel Racasa I WILL BE YOUR BREATH | Director: Malia Adams LAST NIGHT | Director: Douglas Haban MESSAGES | Director: Daniel Oka ONIPA‘A | Director: Dyllon Ching POSTHUMOUS | Director: Sylvia Lee  
  • United States
    AGAPE
    ACM UHM Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    A gay college student reveals to her queer best friend that she has developed faith in Jesus.
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    Kyrgyzstan
    ALA KACHUU - TAKE AND RUN
    Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Sezim (19) wants to fulfil her dream of studying in the Kyrgyz capital when she gets kidnapped by a group of young men and taken to the hinterland. There she's forced to marry a stranger. If she refuses the marriage, she is threatened with social stigmatization and exclusion. Torn between her desire for freedom and the constraints of Kyrgyz culture, Sezim desperately seeks for a way out.
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    United States
    ALA MOANA BOYS
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Blamed for a crime they did not commit, five young men in 1930s Hawai'i must consider their futures and their families as they weigh the consequences of taking action.
  • United States
    ALONE TOGETHER
    anemptytextlline
    This short film was created during the lockdown in the 4th quarter of last school year by students from the media programs at Kealakehe Intermediate School in Kona and Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School on Kaua'i. This was a true collaborative project by 17 middle school students who worked in teams for about 5 weeks to bring this to life. Students led their own teams and worked together to brainstorm, write, film, shoot, and edit their film, all while being across the state from each other. Students did all of their filming following all social distancing guidelines and used themselves or their family members as actors.
  • Japan,Vietnam
    ALONG THE SEA
    Kau Ka Hōkū Award Nominee, Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    ALONG THE SEA follows three Vietnamese women in their early 20s, Phuong, An, and Nhu. They moved to Japan to work as technical trainees. When they decide to escape their workplace, where their passports have been confiscated, they become illegal migrants in the country. A broker, based in a quiet fishermen village, helps them to find a shelter and a new job in a small fish factory. With their doubled salary, also comes a fisherman's ice-covered hut where they live together. Yet, as they begin their new life, Phuong starts to become sick and suffers severe stomach pains. When An and Nhu take her to a hospital, unable to show any ID card, they are refused admission. Phuong must now figure out how to get fake documents in order to save herself. An unflinching portrait of the life of migrant workers in Japan, ALONG THE SEA is a breakout success from newcomer Akio Fujimoto. HIFF is proud to nominate this film for this year's Kau Ka Hōkū Award.
  • AMERICANISH
    United States
    AMERICANISH
    Maui Showcase, New American Perspectives
    anemptytextlline
    In Jackson Heights, Queens, three young muslim women navigate the consistent and sometimes conflicting demands of romance, culture, work, and family. After Sam and Maryam's father leaves their family to embrace an American lifestyle, rejecting their Pakistani values, the two sisters and their mother focus on honoring their cultural traditions. But Sam, working a high-paying job for a man she finds to be bigoted, struggles with accepting her culture and finding autonomy, while Maryam embraces her culture but finds it hindering her academic and career goals. Soon, they're joined by their cousin, Ameera, who immigrated to the land where she naively believes dreams come true. Collectively, Maryam and Ameera seek love and Sam finds status at work. But their efforts are stopped short by disappointing prospects and unsatisfying work, leaving them to find the pieces of their dreams shattered in the peripheral vision of their male counterparts. Yet on their journey, they realize that being a Pakistani-American shouldn't be defined by other people. AMERICANISH tackles and celebrates the complex intersectionalities of womanhood by welcoming us into the world-with all its joys and tribulations-of these three marriage-aged women. -Kanani Lyons This film is presented as part of the New American Perspectives program in partnership with the Vilcek Foundation. HIFF is honored to feature writer and actress Aizzah Fatima as a 2021 program participant. An extended discussion with Aizzah Fatima will be available to view online during the Festival via the HIFF streaming app, and HIFF's Facebook page. Watch the Q&A with Writer and Actress, Aizzah Fatima  
  • China
    ANIMA
    Kau Ka Hōkū Award Nominee, Spotlight on China
    anemptytextlline
    From newcomer Cao Jinling comes the stunningly beautiful and hauntingly resonant ANIMA. A family drama, survival story and environmental siren call, the film captures a country in transition and the loss of an indigenous way of life in the face of encroaching modernity. 1980s Inner Mongolia. Tutu and his little brother Linzi belong to the Lonki tribe, a forest people that live off the land and herd reindeer. One day while out in the forest Linzi falls into a bear den, and instinctively young Tutu shoots the bear to save his brother, an unthinkable act for the Lonki. Even after performing a traditional sky burial ritual for the sacred bear, the death spells a bad omen for the future. Years later, the now adult Tutu and Linzi have been forced to the edge of the forest, eking out a living as lumberjacks clearing the surrounding woods. While Tutu has no qualms with this way of life, Linzi longs for life in the forest, and abhors being forced to be party to cutting the trees. When they both fall for the same woman an even deeper wedge is driven between the brothers. Tutu leaves in search of a different life, and Linzi heads deep into the forest. Yet both brothers will learn that to live in this changing world, sacrifices will be made. Featuring gorgeous landscapes and the exquisite cinematography of Mark Lee Ping Bing (IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE, ASSASSIN) ANIMA is both immersive and captivating. An unbelievable debut from director and writer Cao Jinling. -Anna Page HIFF is proud to nominate this film for the Kau Ka Hōkū Award.
  • Hong Kong SAR China
    ANITA
    Spotlight on Hong Kong
    anemptytextlline
    HIFF is proud to present the US Premiere of the long awaited ANITA, a biopic spanning the life and legacy of legendary singer and actress Anita Mui. A household name in Hong Kong, queen of Canto pop, Anita Mui was the very definition of a cultural icon during Hong Kong's golden age in the eighties and nineties. With a career that began at the age of 4 in an amusement park, Mui dedicated almost her whole life to music. Behind her stardom, her personal life, passion at work and the love for friends made her an irreplaceable role model of "The Daughter of Hong Kong". The film opens with her unforgettable last concert, and spans her incredible life, from her childhood days singing with her sister, to her activism and community service in her later years. ANITA covers the defining moments of her life from her breakthrough success to her most controversial periods, her passionate romances, and her heartfelt friendship with Leslie Cheung. Directed by Longman Leung (COLD WAR), this multi-dimensional portrait offers a glimpse into the world of a woman who was beyond definition and who lived according to her own rules. While this story is truly brought to life by newcomer actress Louise Wong who shines with her striking and nuanced portrayal of Mui. A long time in the making, ANITA also represents the fulfillment of a promise made by producer Bill Kong to Anita Mui before she passed away. 18-years-later, ANITA is her last wish brought to life. Join us to experience the tour-de-force that was Anita on the big screen. -Anna Page Watch the Q&A with Director Longman Leung and Actress Louise Wong  
  • Australia
    ARAATIKA! RISE UP
    Indigenous Lens, Maui Showcase, Pacific Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Despite their extensive legacy within the pan-Pacific rugby community, the Australian national team had one glaring deficiency, especially compared to their New Zealand rivals: their pre-game "unity dance" did little to inspire fear into their competition and courage among their fans. This hard truth was especially egregious considering the apparent diversity of the team, featuring a substantial number of ethnically aboriginal players who have long felt omitted from celebrating their culture loudly and proudly on the field. ARAATIKA! (a.k.a. THE FIGHT TOGETHER) is a documentary about one man's mission to take on decades of cultural injustice and incorporate more indigeneity into the sport. It opens up a broader conversation about Australia's deeply problematic history of racism and how symbols and practice matter greatly in the campaign to restore dignity and pride for repressed communities. For these players, rugby is their platform, and this dance is their voice. -Lee Ngo
  • Japan
    ARC
    Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    If humans could live forever, should we? Does life have meaning without death? Melding human drama with philosophical exploration, this lyrical sci-fi from director Kei Ishikawa (GUKOROKU: TRACES OF SIN, HIFF 2017) seeks to pose rather than answer these questions. Sporting immaculate, crisp, cool set designs and lush cinematography, ARC envelopes the viewer in a near future Japan where the ability to preserve the human body has advanced. 19-year-old dancer Rina (Kyoko Yoshine) has found herself living on the streets after running away and abandoning her baby at age 17. But when she encounters a mysteriously wealthy woman named Ema (Shinobu Terajima) at a dance performance, an opportunity arises that begins to change the course of her life. Ema brings Rina into her world of 'plastination', a new technique that allows the human body to be preserved in perfect condition after death. However, Ema's brother Amane (Masaki Okada) has bigger plans in the works. When Amane builds on this technique and discovers how to preserve the living human body indefinitely, effectively achieving immortality, it sets the stage to change the course of humanity forever. As Rina grows closer to Amane, she must decide whether to tie her fate to this new world. -Anna Page
  • United States
    ARCADE
    Filmmaker In Focus: Albert Pyun
    anemptytextlline
    Alex Manning and her friends  decide to visit the local video arcade known as “Dante’s Inferno” where a new virtual reality arcade game called “Arcade” is being test marketed by a computer company CEO. However, it soon becomes clear that the teenagers who lose are being imprisoned inside the virtual reality world by the central villain “Arcade” and takes over their minds. Revisiting ARCADE from a 2021 point-of-view, one realizes that this is perhaps the most '90s film ever--An obvious cash grab to benefit on the short-lived "virtual reality" craze that churned out other "gems" like LAWNMOWER MAN and VIRTUOSITY; a B-grade cast of teen stars (from ENCINO MAN's Megan Ward, to a pre-BUFFY Seth Green, A.J. Langer aka Rayanne from MY SO-CALLED LIFE, and a post-pubescent Peter Billingsley aka Ralphie from A CHRISTMAS STORY). Heck, even the snively CEO is played by John de Lancie, Q from Star Trek THE NEXT GENERATION! The visuals themselves are outdated, even back then when it was initially released (imagine Dire Straights' "Money For Nothing" music video, but worse). Yet, for all its faults, it has that Pyun sheen of being both hilariously awful, yet still charming. It is definitely a nostalgic buzz and a film that was on constant repeat in some young Gen Xer's VHS collection or on constant repeat of "USA Up All Night." -Anderson Le
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    United States
    AREA 77
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    A young man is living his best life in a restricted forest area, together with his best friend Celia. One day they get the chance to leave the forest to return to a new, now foreign world.
  • United States
    ATOMIC COVER-UP
    Documentary Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    ATOMIC COVER-UP is the first documentary to explore the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 from the unique perspective, words, and startling images of the brave cameramen and directors who risked their lives filming in the irradiated aftermath. It reveals how this historic footage, created by a Japanese newsreel crew and then an elite U.S. Army team, was seized, classified top secret, and then buried by American officials for decades to hide the full human costs of the bombings as a costly nuclear arms race raged. The film is based entirely on the first-hand accounts of key members of the film crews (from the man who shot an early Akira Kurosawa movie to a pioneering American TV director) and the first vivid 4K transfers of their footage--much of it appearing in an American documentary for the first time--as well as long-hidden official records which document the suppression. These rich, vital materials are carefully assembled for haunting effect and maximum relevance for today as nuclear dangers reach peak intensity and official "cover-ups" expand.
  • United States
    AUPUNI
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    A short documentary about the history of Aupuni Space, the community that has formed around the local gallery, and what it means to be an artist in Hawai'i.
  • United States
    AVERAGE
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    What happens if you’re just average?
  • Canada
    AWAKEN THE GIANTS: SINISTERIA VR
    HIFF XR Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    * Due to technical difficulties, this piece is unavailable for in-person VR sessions. However, this is also a 360° web-based experience and accessible for FREE to our online audience. A precarious symmetry persists between nature, humanity and technology. We are asked to play a game of hide and seek in VR to figure out how to bring balance to this battle. This VR art piece will be available in-person! The 360° web-based version will be debuting at HIFF41 XR.   HOW TO VIEW ONLINE: https://curiouseyexr.com/giantsVR.html Instructions From a mobile device or computer, open the link above in your browser and move with your fingers or mouse cursor Click on the arrows to navigate around the space
  • United States
    BALLISTIC
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Ryan Watanabe, a local Japanese American, receives notice of a ballistic missile inbound for Hawai‘i. Ryan has twenty minutes to lead his persistent mother Michi and younger sister Jas to a safety bunker in Diamond Head, overcoming family tension and erupting cultural disparity, to survive a paradise in turmoil.  
  • United States
    BAM BAM CRASH
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    In this animated short a space otter sings of finding a match.
  • BARAGAKI
    Japan
    BARAGAKI: UNBROKEN SAMURAI
    Asian Cinerama, Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    Veteran director and HIFF-fan favorite Masato Harada is back with his most action-packed samurai epic to-date. The master of historical drama, Harada turns his impeccable attention to detail on the life of Toshizo Hijikata, vice-commander of the shinsengumi and staunch opposer of the Meiji Restoration. Starring Junichi Okada as Hijikata in one of his best career performances, and supported by an all-star cast, BARAGAKI: UNBROKEN SAMURAI is based on the novel 'Moeyo Ken' by Ryotaro Shiba (also the author of Harada's adaptation SEKIGAHARA). Set in the mid-19th century, the film follows Hijikata, known for his swordsmanship and ruthless leadership, as he works to lead the shinsengumi to protect the shogunate during the tumultuous shift in the balance of power at the end of the Togukawa era. Harada holds no punches, and BARAGAKI is suspenseful and thrilling, featuring some of the most sophisticated action choreography and swordplay seen in recent years. A truly cinematic experience, this is a must-see on the big screen. -Anna Page
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    India,United States
    BAREFOOT EMPRESS
    Documentary Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    96-year-old Karthiyani Amma lived a life sweeping temples in India. Decades later she broke with tradition returning to school. There, she shattered expectations, earning the top score in her class. Her inspirational story is proof that it's never too late to realize your dreams
  • BELLE hero image
    Japan
    BELLE
    Closing Night Film, Hilo Showcase, Maui Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    From celebrated Oscar®-nominated director Mamoru Hosoda and Studio Chizu, creator of MIRAI, WOLF CHILDREN, SUMMER WARS, and more, comes a fantastical, yet beautiful and contemporary thematic story of one girl's growth in the age of social media.   Suzu is a 17-year-old high school student living in a rural village with her father. For years, she has only been a shadow of herself. One day, she enters "U," a virtual world of 5 billion members on the Internet. There, she is not Suzu anymore but Belle, a world-famous singer. She soon meets with a mysterious creature. Together, they embark on a journey of adventures, challenges and love, in their quest to become who they truly are.   The comparisons to BEAUTY AND THE BEAST are apparent, if not obvious, as Hosoda pays homage to the Disney classic. But the filmmaker adds his own wrinkles to the well-worn tale, transporting the fable into the modern age of alternate realities and the cyberpunk dreams of a Neo-Japan that we already inhabit and experience (TikTok, Pokemon Go, and MineCraft are just tips of the iceberg). Hosoda infuses this classic story with his own themes that were explored in previous films like SUMMER WARS, into a metaphor for family, identity and trauma. With eye-popping, masterful animation, BELLE is ideally meant to be experienced in a very old school way-on the big screen! -Anderson Le
  • United Kingdom
    BEND
    Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Maggie's encounter with the father of the boy who assaulted her teenage daughter tests her dutiful 'rise above' response to its limit.
  • BIG ORANGE FISH
    HIFF XR Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This AR experience will be FREE to the public and accessible to our online and in-person audience. Visitors will need to download a smartphone app onto your device to access this experience.  Through a fun and lighthearted augmented reality (AR) experience, you’ll get to explore the underwater world through your mobile device from anywhere in the world. People of all ages can appreciate this art piece featuring a sea creature that is like the 'taxi' of the sea, whose main job is to transport all the little fish musicians in his/her mouth to the next musical location.    HOW TO VIEW ONLINE: https://curiouseyexr.com/orangefish.html Android: Open the website with chrome (compatible with most Android devices) iOS: Install the WebXR Viewer app by Mozilla and open the website in the app (requires newest iOS) Instructions From website, scan the ground When you see the white circle, tap on the screen to bring up the fish You can relocate the fish onto the white circle by tapping the screen again
  • BIGGER THAN ME hero image
    Australia,United States
    BIGGER THAN ME
    Surf Cinema
    anemptytextlline
    BIGGER THAN ME is a female coming-of-age film about the complexity of being a girl and the challenges that drive you as a woman to take on the elemental power of big waves. Wrenna is a young woman with a fearless dream - a 6' 2" natural with a body built for the ocean, she wants to be a big wave surfer. But she finds the discipline and sacrifice required to be a professional, extremely challenging. Growing up in New Jersey with hippy parents, her teenage years were spent caring for her younger siblings and schooling herself in the local library. At 19, Wrenna makes her pilgrimage to Hawai‘i's North Shore risking it all on big waves. She is confronted by the pressures of carving out a professional sporting life as a woman and without a sponsor she works two jobs to support her dream. Filming over ten years, from Oahu's iconic big wave, Waimea Bay to the cold waters of Mavericks to the ultimate big wave of Peahi (Jaws), we travel with Wrenna through the seasons, the highs and the lows of facing your fears - to find out how much bigger you can be.
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    United States
    BLOOM
    ACM UHM Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Summer has begun, but one flower at the edge of a field of blooming flowers is reluctant to open up. With the help of a ladybug, she learns to have courage and is able to bloom.
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    United States
    BLUE COOLER
    Keiki Shorts, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    BLUE COOLER captures small moments of life in Hawai‘i through a montage of richly painted and colorful brush strokes, sounds and images. Like home movies that spark an atmosphere or feeling, the moving paintings in BLUE COOLER pop with familiar experiences and vivid observations. The animation is hand painted frame by frame using oil paints.
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    United States
    BLUSH
    Keiki Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    "Blush" follows the journey of a stranded horticulturist-astronaut's chances for survival after he crash lands on a desolate dwarf planet. When an ethereal visitor arrives, the once-lone traveler discovers the joy in building a new life and realizes the universe has delivered astonishing salvation.
  • United States
    BONFIRE
    HIFF XR Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    * Due to technical difficulties, this piece was moved from Program 2 to Program 1. We appreciate your understanding. This experience will be FREE to the public and will be available in-person at the Entrepreneurs Sandbox NOV 20 & 21 from 12:00PM – 6:00PM. Visitors are REQUIRED to register in advance for a time-slot to participate.  In BONFIRE, the latest interactive VR experience from the award-winning Baobab Studios, you play the leading role. As Space Scout 817, you are on a mission to discover a new home for the human race after it has made a mess of Earth. The stakes are high. Too bad your piloting skills lack... precision. In fact, you crash-land at night in a mysterious clearing of an unknown planet three-hundred light-years from Earth. Your only source of light is your makeshift bonfire. Beyond its glow everything falls to darkness. And what are those strange noises coming from the alien jungle? You have only your instincts and your robot sidekick, Debbie, to guide you. Voiced by comedian, actress, and writer Ali Wong, Debbie’s companionship comes with a signature wariness. When a chance meeting with a local inhabitant further steers your mission off course, you learn that unexpected encounters just might result in lasting friendships. In this intimate setting you have the opportunity to embrace, explore and influence the world around you, and, perhaps, make new friends. In the end, the choice is ultimately yours: Will you follow your captain or your conscience?
  • Taiwan ROC
    BORN TO BE HUMAN
    Spotlight on Taiwan
    anemptytextlline
    In Lily Ni's directorial debut, a young Taiwanese boy, Shi-Nan, suddenly has stomach cramps, and he even begins to urinate blood. After collapsing at school, his parents find a urologist and are quickly informed that Shi-Nan is intersex. Shocked and dismayed, they avoid informing him of his diagnosis, attempting to deflect shame and to coerce him into a medical procedure. Without Shi-Nan's consent, his parents allow a sex reassaignment surgery, leaving Shi-Nan spiraling into an identity crisis as his parents change his name and move them to a new city. As the introductory scene opens with a butterfly fluttering across the frame, the slow-building music reflects the nature of the lives of intersex individuals. And as each scene is doused in a hue of blue that collides with pink lights flashing outside of Shi-Nan's window, highlighting the nature of his dysphoria, the film confronts the troubling relationship Taiwan has with the intersex community. Shi-Nan, now known as Shi-Lan, attends a new school, but a change of scenery is not what he needs. BORN TO BE HUMAN is a portrait of one human's physical and emotional metamorphosis that occurs without his knowledge or consent. -Kanani Lyons
  • United States
    BR0K3N
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Br0k3n is a short film about mental illness and its startling effects. Candace is a successful attorney, engaged to her dream guy, whose life should be right on track. Despite the best efforts of her sympathetic psychiatrist, Dr. Wright, Candace begins to spiral into a familiar pattern of losing touch with reality. This dark, psychological thriller will leave you wondering what's real and what's all in your mind.
  • United States
    BREONNA'S GARDEN
    HIFF XR Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This experience will be FREE to the public and will be available in-person on NOV 4 – 28 from 9:00AM – 5:00PM at BoxJelly, and on NOV 20 & 21 from 12:00PM – 6:00PM at the Surfrider Foundation Community Garden, located across the street from Entrepreneurs Sandbox. Visitors will need to download a smartphone app onto a mobile device to access this experience. In solidarity with Breonna Taylor's family, BREONNA'S GARDEN is a revolutionary framework for veneration through augmented reality (AR). As a sacred space, the Garden is brimming with flowers, butterflies, and a few of Breonna’s favorite things. The development of the project started after Lady PheOnix connected with Ju’Niyah Palmer, Breonna’s sister. Initially, Lady PheOnix sensed a need for a safe space online where her family and friends could mourn. It soon became apparent that entire communities needed a place to process their grief. “We created BREONNA'S GARDEN to honor the life of Breonna Taylor with the intention that it be a peaceful refuge, unencumbered by the weight of the world.” Our online audience may access Breonna's Garden App by clicking here.
  • United States
    BRUISED
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Halle Berry makes her directorial debut while starring as a washed-up MMA fighter struggling for redemption as both an athlete and a mother. Berry plays Jackie "aka Justice,", a washed up MMA fighter scraping by in life working multiple jobs and trying to make ends meet. When her boyfriend coaxes her to attend an underground fight, her passion for the sport is reignited. As Jackie prepares to go back to "the only thing she is good at," the son she once abandoned is dropped off at her doorstep. Confronted by her past choices and traumas, Jackie will have to fight to reclaim the two most meaningful things she has walked away from: six-year-old Manny and an MMA title. With this assured debut feature, Academy Award winner Berry crafts a textured portrait of a woman defined by her fight-or-flight reactions to the challenges life has thrown her way. Through her explosive performance, the character Jackie simultaneously radiates tightly coiled rage and heart-rending vulnerability. She is supported by an amazing cast. BRUISED regards all of its characters' flaws with great empathy while building to a rousing, fist-pumping finale, and deservedly joins the hallows of the classic redemption films of its ilk, from THE FIGHTER to CREED. -Anderson Le
  • United States
    BURNOUT.
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    As the school year comes to a close, a high school student finds themselves struggling under the rising tide of deadlines.
  • C'MON C'MON hero image
    United States
    C'MON C'MON
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Johnny (Joaquin Phoenix) and his young nephew (Woody Norman) forge a tenuous but transformational relationship when they are unexpectedly thrown together in this delicate and deeply moving story about the connections between adults and children, the past and the future, from writer-director Mike Mills (BEGINNERS, 20TH CENTURY WOMEN).
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    Colombia
    CALL OF THE HEART
    Green Screen Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    In the deep belief that their region is the "Heart of the World", the leaders of the village (called Mamos) advise that the earth is a living body and if you kill the heart, all other things will die, too. They explain that if humans simply obey the universe's Original Law, the development of new diseases and a disharmony amongst humans can be avoided. With this film we aim to draw attention to the climate crisis by showing the direct effects currently had on those living most closely to the land as well as the effects to come for all of us. In addition to spreading awareness we also aim to raise money to help the Arhuaco people buy back their rightful land, preserving a critical water source for the Gunchukwa village, and allow the opportunity to reforest the area. To achieve this we have set up a Gofundme for donations and have partnered with Akomplice on a small capsule clothing collection, from which all profits will be donated towards this goal.
  • CAPTAIN AMERICA hero image
    United States
    CAPTAIN AMERICA
    Filmmaker In Focus: Albert Pyun
    anemptytextlline
    Long ago, Steve Rogers was a true American hero, a brave super soldier created by scientists to help the Allied Forces fight for freedom in World War II. But during a battle with the sinister Red Skull, he was lost, entombed in ice. Decades later, his body has been found and revived and Steve must again don the mantle of Captain America to help save the President of the United States, and the world, from his arch-nemesis once and for all. Before there was the Marvel Cinematic Universe and its 25+ films occupying the center of all pop culture and ruining cinema (well, according to Martin Scorsese and Denis Villeneuve), cult director Albert Pyun took the reigns of Captain America during the Marvel cinematic dark ages, when the once maligned comics company was selling off their properties left and right, and for pennies to the dollar, just to keep their doors open. Aside from Tim Burton's BATMAN and Richard Donner's SUPERMAN, comic book movies were a joke, relegated to low budget purgatory. Albert Pyun's CAPTAIN AMERICA is no different, especially since the resourceful director had to cut corners when money was running out further into his shoot. Is this CAPTAIN AMERICA better than the MCU's version two decades later? Well, no, but it did have fifty times the budget for starters. What CAPTAIN AMERICA lacks in spectacle, Pyun's version makes up with old school charm and an imbued innocence before postmodernism, Frank Miller, and the godawful Snyderverse made our heroes into assholes. -Anderson Le
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    United States
    CASHBACK
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    On her last night of work, a pregnant theater manager and her longtime employee discover a bag of cash under a seat and must decide what to do with it.
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    South Korea
    CASUALLY, FOR THE WORSE
    Spotlight on Korea Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Ryeo-won wants to distance herself from Baek-young, a boyish girl. Baek-young wants to get along well with Ryeo-won. Ryeo-won feels confused and impulsive about Baek-yeong, who is approaching her.
  • CAT DADDIES hero image
    United States
    CAT DADDIES
    Documentary Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    David Giovanni is living on the streets of New York, determined to stay together with his beloved cat Lucky. When he's finally granted a spot in a transitional housing facility that accepts cats, the COVID-19 pandemic and a devastating medical diagnosis puts his future together with Lucky in doubt. David's journey is interspersed with portraits of other "cat dads'' from around the country, some of which struggle to navigate the unprecedented events of 2020 with their little furry friends. They include a group of firefighters, a stuntman, a truck driver, a Bay Area tech worker, a schoolteacher whose cat becomes a viral sensation, and an actor/Instagram influencer. These men couldn't be more different, but they share an unconditional love of their beloved pets. CAT DADDIES, from director Mye Hoang, is a refreshing and timely exploration of modern masculinity and the unlikely bond between man and cat.
  • CATCH THE FAIR ONE hero image
    United States
    CATCH THE FAIR ONE
    Indigenous Lens, Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    In this absorbing revenge thriller executive produced by Darren Aronofsky, a Native American woman embarks on the fight of her life when she goes in search of her missing sister. The former boxer intentionally gets entangled in a human trafficking operation in order to retrace the steps of her kid sister and work her way up the chain of command to find the man responsible. Real life US boxing world champion Kali Reis plays the fearsome protagonist, delivering a raw breakout performance in a role that she co-wrote with the filmmaker, Josef Wladyka, who turns in an explosive and taut thriller with a directorial assurance. Thwarting the conventions of a "woman on a mission," CATCH THE FAIR ONE is efficient filmmaking-immaculate cinematography, quick-cut editing, powerful performances-as well as something entirely new in mainstream cinema from an indigenous, female perspective. The ruthless world of human trafficking is brought to life here with gripping suspense and an emotional depth led by Reis, who simply commands the screen. -Anderson Le
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    Australia
    CITIZENS OF THE GREAT BARRIER REEF
    Green Screen Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    This documentary follows the work of a team of scientists, explorers and conservationists as they join forces on an ocean adventure to survey the effects of climate change on one of the most remote and rarely visited regions of the Great Barrier Reef. Calling for immediate global action, their work offers hope that our coral reefs can be rescued and protected for generations to come.
  • United States
    CLOSING THE DISTANCE
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    It's 2022 and the COVID pandemic has forced the continuation of online school indefinitely. Kayla, a shy, neurotic, awkward and recently relocated student, dreams of achieving a normal high school social life despite the challenges of a global pandemic and new school environment.
  • Japan
    COME BACK ANYTIME
    Eat. Drink. Film.
    anemptytextlline
    Masamoto Ueda runs a small ramen shop in Tokyo. He keeps his menu simple yet delicious, serving classics such as soy-based ramen, fried gyoza and cold beer to a dedicated community of regular patrons drawn by his charming personality and genuine care for his customers. Throughout the year, he takes his friends on foraging trips through the Japanese countryside, presenting a beautiful portrait of Japan changing through the seasons. As elegantly crafted, gently soothing and emotionally satisfying as the cuisine gorgeously presented on-screen, COME BACK ANYTIME is a soul nourishing portrait of a man quietly committed to his craft but driven by kindness for the people around him. Underscored by a soothing jazz score and charmingly directed by Tokyo-based filmmaker John Daschbach, COME BACK ANYTIME will leave you craving late-night ramen shared with the people you love. COME BACK ANYTIME a surefire hit for food lovers and fans of Japanese cinema --- just don't watch it on an empty stomach! -Duncan Caillard
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    United States
    CROSSINGS
    Film For Thought
    anemptytextlline
    CLICK HERE to view an extended discussion with director Deann Liem, along with Christine Ahn, Ann Wright, and Mimi Han, moderated by scholar Vernadette Gonzalez. Read a companion essay written by scholar Vernadette Gonzalez HERE. The Demilitarized Zone separating South and North Korea is the Cold War's last remaining barrier. It is also a potent symbol of the Korean War, halted by armistice, not a peace treaty. For nearly 70 years, politicians have failed to reach consensus about this division, stoking tension and fear of renewed fighting, while continuing to separate millions of family members. In 2015, a group of women finally had enough. That May, Korean American activist Christine Ahn brought thirty women, including Nobel Peace Laureates Leymah Gbowee and Mairead Maguire plus feminist pioneer Gloria Steinem, to Pyongyang to discuss peace. They joined thousands of North Korean women on a peace walk, then crossed the DMZ to meet with South Korean women activists. This unprecedented border crossing, the complex, politically sensitive effort required to accomplish it, and the women's profound and frank encounters along the way, becomes a dramatic entry point and continuing thread in CROSSINGS, the latest film from the award winning Deann Borshay Liem (FIRST PERSON PLURAL,GEOGRAPHIES OF KINSHIP). The film tells the surprising story of women's commitment to peacefully resolve the on-going Korean crisis. As the film reveals, South and North Korean women have been quietly meeting for years to discuss achieving peace and reconciliation, if not reunification. -Anderson Le Mahalo to community supporters for this event: Center for Korean Studies at UH, Spark M. Matsunaga Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution, Women's Voices, Women's Speak, Hawai'i Peace and Justice, Vets for Peace Hawai'i Chapter, and Women Cross DMZ/Korea Peace Now!
  • United States
    CYBORG
    Filmmaker In Focus: Albert Pyun
    anemptytextlline
    In a future beset by chaos and violence, mercenary Gibson Rickenbacker (Jean-Claude Van Damme) is charged with a mission that could change everything: protecting beautiful cyborg Pearl Prophet (Dayle Haddon). She holds the cure for a deadly disease that could destroy humanity, and must get it to scientists in Atlanta. But warlord Tremolo Fender (Vincent Klyn), fearing that his power will be undercut by peace, intends to make sure she never reaches her destination. In the "martial artist with a funny accent hero who hunts a killer in a plague-infested urban dump of the future" genre, CYBORG kicks off cult director Albert Pyun's cyberpunk-dystopia string of movies. Interestingly, CYBORG was put together haphazardly after Cannon Films original plans to make MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE 2 and SPIDER-MAN movies, with Pyun set to direct both, fell apart. Not wanting to just discard the pre-fabricated sets and costumes from these canceled productions, Pyun came up with the CYBORG script in a matter of days, repurposed said sets and costumes, and cast a then unknown Van Damme to replicate the Chuck Norris craze (incidentally, the MISSION IN ACTION movies starring Norris were also Cannon Films productions). The sad thing is that the world never got to see Pyun's MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE sequel or his take on SPIDER-MAN. However, what the world missed is replaced by Pyun giving JCVD a shot at low budget movie stardom and cementing him as the '90s action hero he would eventually become. And in my defense of CYBORG--for all its shortcomings, badly lit scenes, and meandering plot, Pyun did give us one helluva climactic showdown between Van Damme and Vincent Klyn, with lots of yelling...Not yelling words, but just yelling. It's almost hypnotic. And epic. -Anderson Le
  • China
    DARK RED FOREST
    Kau Ka Hōkū Award Nominee, Spotlight on China
    anemptytextlline
    For six months out of the year, thousands of Tibetan nuns of all ages hike up to the Yarchen Monastery, over 4,000 meters above sea level. As they develop severe cold-borne illnesses while each dwelling in small portable wooden houses that are flooded often with snow, the nuns diligently practice their sutras in their relentless pursuit of enlightenment, healing, and faith. Every now and then, these nuns will even stray from their path and wonder how they can restore karma and redeem themselves. DARK RED FOREST is an exceptionally intimate portrayal of the lives and experiences of these women, a rare and lengthy glimpse into a community that is often politically shrouded and even "left behind" in a rapidly contemporizing China. This documentary goes beyond the scope of portraiture and explores the physical and mental struggles of the nuns as they postulate their circumstances through a recitation of Buddhist philosophy combined with collective resolve. Whether you are spiritually inclined or simply curious, this film offers a portal into a world of people who strive for and yet still stumble on their road to karmic glory. -Lee Ngo
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    France
    DAUGHTERS OF THE WAVES
    Indigenous Lens, Pacific Showcase, Surf Cinema
    anemptytextlline
    The ocean is at the heart of Tahitian culture, spiritual beliefs and everyday life. It seems that in the archipelago, riding the waves is an old ancestral activity from which women have been gradually eliminated as surfing became big business in the 1960s. Teahupo ªo, located on the southwestern coast of Tahiti, is one of the major surf spots in the world, and also the most deadly. Surfing machismo, especially in big wave surfing, all but pushed out female competitors. But, the times are a-changin' (just look at Carissa Moore, who won Gold at the inaugural surfing competition at the recently concluded Tokyo Olympics). In the Fierro family, all the women are surfers-Vahine (20), Heimiti (16) and Kohai (14) are at an age when all their dreams are within reach. The three women hope to make a living with their passion and travel the world. Vahine, the eldest, is already a world champion (the very first in Polynesia), with her eyes locked for a shot at the 2024 Olympics. Still in high school, Heimeti is training hard in the only sports medicine program on the islands. And the youngest, Kohai, is dead set to follow in her sister's footsteps. With lush footage of sea, sand, surf and plant life that captures the breathtaking beauty of Tahiti, DAUGHTERS OF THE WAVES captures the love, passion and determination of these vibrant young women and the enchanting and tight-knit family unit that embraces the true surfer's lifestyle, and the potential futures that will be unlocked by these groundbreaking sisters. -Anderson Le
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    United States
    DAY AND NIGHT
    ACM UHM Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    The fiery and stubborn, Apolaki, tries to take the Earth for himself, not wanting to share with his obedient sister, Mayari. The siblings argue over ownership of the Earth leading to an all-out fistfight and chase sequence in space! The siblings take turns throwing punches and zooming around one another. As the fight climaxes, Mayari gets badly injured from her brother's attack causing a crack, down her left eye. Guilty of his actions, Apolaki tries to mend his relationship with his sister.
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    New Zealand
    DISRUPT
    Pacific Showcase, Pacific Showcase Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    When a burglary goes wrong, a drug addict must choose between his family and his next fix.
  • Documentary Panorama Shorts
    Documentary Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    PLAYS WITH: BAREFOOT EMPRESS | Director: Vikas Khanna EAGLES | Directors: Kristy Guevara-Flanagan, Maite Zubiaurre F1-100 | Director: Emory Chao Johnson IN THE SHADOW OF THE PINES | Director: Anne Koizumi KALINGA (CARE) | Director: Kent Donguines PANT HOOT | Director: Richard Reens RADICAL CARE: THE AUNTIE SEWING SQUAD | Director: Valerie Soe UNEMPLOYMENT HOTLINE | Director: Nikos Campbell WE CAME BACK FOR YOU | Directors: Akira Boch, Taiji Terasaki YELLO | Director: King Yaw Soon
  • DOLLMAN hero image
    United States
    DOLLMAN
    Filmmaker In Focus: Albert Pyun
    anemptytextlline
    Brick Bardo is a hard-boiled detective from outer space who is forced to land on Earth. Though regular sized on his home planet, he is doll-sized here on Earth, as are the enemy forces who have landed as well. While Brick enlists the help of an impoverished girl and her son, the bad guys enlist the help of a local gang. When word leaks out as to his location, and all hell breaks loose. Brick is besieged by an onslaught of curious kids, angry gang members, and his own doll-sized enemies, and he must protect the family who has helped him and get off the planet alive. Tim Thomerson, who plays our space policeman, goes all in with his performance, essentially playing the same character from his other low budget franchise TRANCERS (another cult classic that occupied late night cable space). In other words, imagine a second generation dub of Dirty Harry, but as a 13-inch space dick, and voila, Brick Bardo! He may be the toughest cop on his planet, but on Earth he is in over his head! DOLLMAN occupies a unique legacy in Full Moon Features repertoire as founder and schlockmeister (a reference we use with reverence) Charles Band had the wherewithal to beat out movie crossovers like FREDDIE VS JASON and BATMAN V SUPERMAN, by combining his own franchises with DOLLMAN VS DEMONIC TOYS (Band would do it again a decade later with PUPPET MASTER VS DEMONIC TOYS). But, it all started with Pyun's DOLLMAN, led by a snarky performance by Thomerson and a zanier Jackie Earle Hayley as the big bad. -Anderson Le
  • Hong Kong SAR China
    DRIFTING
    Asian Cinerama, Spotlight on Hong Kong
    anemptytextlline
    Fai (Francis Ng), a homeless man recently released from prison, finds his old friends on the streets in Sham Shui Po, one of Hong Kong's poorest districts. One night, the group is rudely awakened by an unannounced street sweep. Seeing their possessions stolen by police officers and trashed, Fai and his friends decide to stand up for the dignity of their homeless community with the help of Ms. Ho (Cecilia Choi), a social worker. Based on a news story from 2012, in which a group of homeless people sued the government for mistreatment, DRIFTING movingly portrays the lives of those abandoned by Hong Kong's exclusionary housing market. Director Jun Li balances a sociological analysis of structural violence (the film opens with a quote from Judith Butler's Dispossession) with streetwise melodrama in the vein of Ann Hui's social realist films, such as ORDINARY HEROES. What is most notable about DRIFTING is its focus on Hong Kong's hostile architecture, and the psychological toll it takes on the homeless. The film was shot in late 2019, one of the most violent periods in Hong Kong's recent history, and though no protest footage is directly shown, a menacing air nonetheless hangs over the city. -Emerson Goo
  • Japan
    DRIVE MY CAR
    Maui Showcase, Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    Ryûsuke Hamaguchi cements his status among Japan's most talented directors with a sprawling yet intimate tale of loss, loneliness, and connection. Based on a short story by Haruki Murakami, DRIVE MY CAR unspools the story of Yusuke (Hidetoshi Nishijima) a successful stage director and actor who shares a beautiful life with the loving yet enigmatic Oto. When Oto dies suddenly, Yusuke finds himself stricken and left with many unanswered questions about his wife, and their lives together. Two years later and still grieving the loss, he accepts a job directing a play in Hiroshima and sets off in his iconic vintage red Saab. Upon arrival, he discovers that due to theater company rules, he will be required to have a chauffeur drive him around in his own car. His chauffeur turns out to be the taciturn young Misaki (Toko Miura), a woman of few words yet a skillful driver. As they increasingly log hours together in the Saab, Yusuke and Misaki begin to form an unexpected bond. A master of effortless subtlety and nuance, Hamaguchi immerses the viewer in Yusuke's world. And through Yusuke's search for answers, he reveals universal truths that reflect upon the nature of life, love, and loss. HIFF is honored to present this Cannes Award-Winning film, and we are also proud to present Hamaguchi's WHEEL OF FORTUNE AND FANTASY in the 2021 program. -Anna Page
  • United States
    DROWNING
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This short film portraying the multiple crises facing our ocean was created by three students in Maui Huliau Foundation's Huliau Environmental Filmmaking Club during the 2020-21 school year.
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    United States
    EAGLES
    Documentary Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Along the southern desert border in Arizona, it is estimated that only one out of every five missing migrants are ever found. Águilas is the story of one group of searchers, the Aguilas del Desierto. Once a month these volunteers-construction workers, gardeners, domestic laborers by trade-set out to recover the missing, reported to them by loved ones often thousands of miles away. Amidst rising political repression and cartel violence, as well as the eternal difficulties of travel in the Sonoran Desert, the Aguilas carry out their solemn task.
  • Eat. Drink. Film. Shorts
    Eat. Drink. Film. Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    PLAYS WITH: LITTLE FISH NO PLACE LIKE KASAMA PHOENIX BAKERY: SWEETS FOR THE SWEET TANAGOKORO: A CULINARY PORTRAIT
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    United States
    ESCAPE VELOCITY
    Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    To overcome writer's block and finish her horror film, an aspiring occultist finds isolation deep in the rainforest to perform a life-changing ritual.
  • Japan
    ETERNALLY YOUNGER THAN THOSE IDIOTS
    Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    Horigai is more than eager to finish her college career and begin her new job at a child welfare center in her hometown. She splits her time between working quality control at a factory, rushing to complete school assignments, and staying occupied at home with quirky projects. When she's about to fail a key exam, she begs a fellow student named Inogi for her notes. They strike up an awkward friendship at first, but after the sudden death of a friend, Horigai and Inogi's friendship evolves, leading Inogi to share the secret of her tragic past. Horigai realizes she's actually been willfully blind to the adult world and the deeper sadness experienced by those around her. Ryohei Hoshino directs a deeply contemplative film about the secret lives people hide from one another to maintain an idyllic persona. Starring Yui Sakuma as Horigai and Nao as Inogi, ETERNALLY YOUNGER THAN THOSE IDIOTS approaches its subject matter with a necessary subtlety, insisting the audience pay attention to its details and explore the ways in which people can transform tragic circumstances into a sense of purpose and hope for the future. -Lee Ngo
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    United States
    F1-100
    Documentary Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Video, illustration, and animation are combined in this intimate portrait of an international art student studying abroad in the United States. Drawing on artist profile and gender journey films, F1-100 is a transnational meditation through time and space of a young artist carrying a heavy burden.
  • United States
    FACELESS
    Documentary Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    In the summer of 2019, two million Hong Kong citizens took to the streets, put on masks and dressed in black to protest the controversial Extradition Bill. Fearful that their personal freedoms would be taken away by an encroaching authoritarian government, these protests both inspired the world to witness and respond to the crisis. And yet the efficacy of their movement has been challenged, as Hong Kong's political status remains precarious. FACELESS is a daring documentary that follows four people in an effort to look underneath the masks and create a diverse understanding of the protests from the perspectives of the protestors. Directed by journalist Jennifer Ngo, this feature-length film focuses on four people in particular: the Artist concerned about the Hong Kong LGBTQ+ community's future, the Student on the cusp of graduation, the Believer who advocates for non-violent resistance, and the loving Daughter of a police officer. Ngo's tour-de-force documentary is more pertinent than ever in a time when freedom and democracy has never been so fragile. -Lee Ngo
  • South Korea
    FANNING
    Spotlight on Korea Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    On a hot summer day, Haedam, who is blind, calls a repair engineer to fix a broken fan. The repairman leaves, and a woman breaks into Haedam's house.
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    FILM FOR THOUGHT: IN CONVERSATION WITH DANIS GOULET | NIGHT...
    Film For Thought, HIFF Talks
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire conversation. CLICK HERE to view a companion essay written by scholar Bryan Kuwada.  As part of HIFF’s 2021 Film For Thought Program presented by the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities, join us for a special Conversation With Danis Goulet, director of NIGHT RAIDERS. Moderated by Bryan Kuwada, Professor of Hawaiian Studies at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.
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    FILM FOR THOUGHT: IN CONVERSATION WITH DEANN BORSHAY LIEM |...
    Film For Thought, HIFF Talks
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to watch the full conversation with director Deann Liem, as well as Christine Ahn, Ann Wright, and Mimi Han, moderated by Vernadette Gonzalez. You can also read a companion essay written by scholar Vernadette Gonzalez at this link.  As part of HIFF's 2021 Film For Thought Program presented by the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities, join us for a special Conversation With director Deann Borshay Liem along with the women featured in the film CROSSINGS. Moderated by Vernadette Gonzalez, Professor of American Studies at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. About Deann Borshay Liem Deann Borshay Liem is an award-winning documentarian known for her landmark adoption films, FIRST PERSON PLURAL, IN THE MATTER OF CHA JUNG HEE and GEOGRAPHIES OF KINSHIP, as well as films that explore the legacies of the Korean War, including MEMORY OF FORGOTTEN WAR. She is the recipient of the Women, Peace and Security Fellowship from San Francisco Film Society for her latest work, CROSSINGS, which will have its' world premiere at the Hawaii International Film Festival.
  • FILM FOR THOUGHT: IN CONVERSATION WITH GEMMA CUBERO DEL BARRIO...
    Film For Thought, HIFF Talks
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire conversation. CLICK HERE to view a companion essay written by scholar Caryn Lesuma.  As part of HIFF’s 2021 Film For Thought Program presented by the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities, join us for a special Conversation With Gemma Cubero del Barrio, director of THE ISLAND IN ME. Moderated by Caryn Lesuma, Professor in the Faculty of Arts and Letters at Brigham Young University Hawai‘i. About Gemma Cubero del Barrio Gemma is a Spanish/American documentary director and producer. For the last 22 years she has gained a breath of experience producing non-fiction documentary films and original programming around the world. In 2006, she founded Talcual Films.  Her documentaries include: ELLA ES EL MATADOR (She Is The Matador), OTTOMATICAKE, OUR ATOLL SPEAKS, and THE ISLAND IN ME. Gemma received the 2008 Tribeca All Access Creative Promise Award for Documentary from the Tribeca Film Institute, and was also nominated for the United States Artists Fellowship, the American Latino Media Arts (ALMA) Award, and the Chicken and Egg Breakthrough Filmmakers Award. She loves to combine her directing with producing and consulting with independent filmmakers as well as teaching and mentoring young generations of storytellers. She is a Board Member of Network for the Promotion of Asia Pacifica Cinema (NETPAC) and for the last 7 years has served as a judge for the Emmy® Awards.
  • FILM FOR THOUGHT: IN CONVERSATION WITH JAKE WACHTEL | KARMALINK
    Film For Thought, HIFF Talks
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire conversation. CLICK HERE to read a companion essay written by scholar Ida Yoshinaga. As part of HIFF’s 2021 Film For Thought Program presented by the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities, join us for a special Conversation With Jake Wachtel, director of KARMALINK. Moderated by Ida Yoshinaga, Assistant Professor in the School of Literature, Media and Communication at Georgia Tech University. About Jake Wachtel Jake Wachtel grew up in California, and studied Film and Neuroscience at Stanford University. In 2015, he moved to Cambodia to teach filmmaking to children through Filmmakers Without Borders. His short THE FOREIGNER HERE premiered at the Cambodian International Film Festival alongside the new wave of Cambodian directors. His doc work has been featured on NYTimes.com, Wired, NPR and MSNBC. KARMALINK is his debut feature.
  • HIGH TIDE
    FILM FOR THOUGHT: IN CONVERSATION WITH THE REBEL FILM COLLECTIVE...
    Film For Thought, HIFF Talks
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire panel discussion. CLICK HERE to read a companion essay by scholar Jaimey Hamilton Faris. As part of HIFF’s 2021 Film For Thought Program presented by the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities, join us for a special Conversation With The Rebel Film Collective, the directors and producers of HIGH TIDE DON'T HIDE. The conversation will also include one of the student heroes featured in the film, Fili Fepulea‘i-Tapua‘i. The conversation will be moderated by Jaimey Hamilton Faris, Professor in the department of Art and Art History at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. About The Rebel Film Collective We are an autonomous collective of passionate humans deeply concerned about the environment and social justice. Our aim is to make films and document the incredible people and important events that may otherwise be overlooked. Phil Stebbing, Co-Director, Co-Producer Over the last 30 years, Phil has worked with British Broadcasters, Discovery Channel and National Geographic, specialising in presenter-led factual programs and observational documentaries. He has received awards for various productions from Sundance Festival, International Wildlife Film Festival, Jackson Hole, Realscreen, Grierson Award.. Niva Kay,  Writer, Co-Director, Co-Producer Niva is a filmmaker passionate about storytelling, environmental and social justice. Niva has built a successful career as a digital producer, creating content in various media forms, including writing, photography, videography and graphics. She is co-author of the number one best-selling book, ‘The Abundant Garden’. Niva and her partner established Pakaraka Permaculture, a regenerative market garden and education centre on the Coromandel Peninsula. Emily McDowell, Co-Director, Co-Producer Emily has directed and produced environmental issues-focused documentaries for broadcasters including BBC World, MTV International and Māori Television, typically further shared as high school and tertiary educational resources. Her series on young people and climate change screened to the world’s largest youth audience. She is a co-founder of Major Arc, a charity championing films committed to positive social change. Nia Phipps, Co-Director, Co-Producer Nia is a creative producer and impact producer. Recent documentary projects include Land of the Long White Cloud – a web series confronting white privilege and the legacy of a colonial history in Aotearoa New Zealand. Minimum series, produced for Radio New Zealand online – a web series on the reality of life on minimum wage for women in New Zealand. She is currently employed as a coordinator in the Talent Development Department at the New Zealand Film Commission.
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    New Zealand
    FIRE IN THE WATER, FIRE IN THE SKY
    Pacific Showcase, Pacific Showcase Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    To live is to dance. Tia has always survived - but in turn she has forgotten how to dance. Sisters Tia and Ina are far from home. Tia is steadfast and protective of free-spirited Ina. Tia is focused on each labouring job ahead of them. Phonecalls home to their family a reminder of why they must continue. Ina is wild, carefree, her spirit only slightly dampened by the push and focus of Tia. The younger sister brightens when her want to play, to dance, is encouraged by the keeper of the house, Tee. A friend to both sisters and a safe haven for them too, Tee struggles with the reality of their situation. A story of migration, Fire In The Water, Fire In The Sky is a statement inspired by climate change from Te Moana-nui-a-kiva - the South Pacific Ocean.
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    United States
    FISHPOND: LOKO I‘A
    Green Screen Shorts, Indigenous Lens, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts, Maui Showcase
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    On the remote Hawaiian island of Molokai during the Covid-19 pandemic, an ancient fishpond brings together the community, resulting in powerful lessons of resilience and sustainability for the next generation. The work of restoring Ali‘i Fishpond provides not only food, but sharing of profound Hawaiian wisdom. This inspiring film begs the question: What can you do in your community to share your knowledge with the generations that follow you? Filmed entirely on Molokai, FISHPOND: LOKO I‘A is a short documentary featuring globally recognized Kupuna Council members Uncle Mac Poepoe and Uncle Bobby Alcain.
  • Denmark,France,Norway,Sweden,United States
    FLEE
    Documentary Panorama
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    One of the most riveting and captivating films of the year, with breathtaking animation, FLEE recounts the true story of Afghan refugee Amin Nawabi. Living in Denmark, on the cusp of marriage, Amin reveals a secret that he has kept for 20 years. For the first time in his life Amin shares the story of his daring escape from Afghanistan as a child refugee in the 1990s. Told through animation as Amin shares his story with his longtime friend director Jonas Poher Rasmussen, the film follows his extraordinary and harrowing journey across borders and languages as he seeks out refuge in Europe. Utterly engrossing, with its ingenious blend of narration, animation and archival footage, FLEE is at once a survival thriller and a coming of age drama. While this film conveys some of the universal experiences of refugees from across the globe, as a new wave of Afghan refugees flee their homes, FLEE is more poignant and urgent than ever. -Anna Page
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    Canada
    FOOD FOR THE REST OF US
    Green Screen, Indigenous Lens
    anemptytextlline
    Recent social movement campaigns such as #BlackLivesMatter, #IdleNoMore, and #TimesUp are often notable for focusing on systemic violence towards their respective communities. These campaigns have also inspired other ways to close the gaps for disenfranchised communities in the long term, focusing on the food supply chain: generate more access to quality food and greater ownership over farmable land. Some of these methods are truly creative and brilliant, providing hope for the future of eliminating unnecessary hunger, poverty, and illness. FOOD FOR THE REST OF US focuses on four examples in particular: an Indigenous-owned, youth run organic farm in Hawai‘i, a Black urban grower in Kansas City who runs a high school land-farm, a female Kosher butcher working with the queer Colorado community, and an Inuit community on the Arctic Coast operating out of a small, climate-friendly geodesic dome. Each of these subjects are examples of true leadership within the community, fighting for the underprivileged to shape their destiny on their own terms. -Lee Ngo
  • United States
    FOOTPRINT
    Student Showcase
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    A work of experimental storytelling, the film Footprint follows the mind of a young man dealing with the realities of life in the latter half of the 21st century. He is forced to face his own arrogance but also that of the entire human race as the effects of global warming are starting to be realized. Footprint is a reminder that we all will leave something behind, but each and every one of us has the power to choose exactly what that is.
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    United States
    FRAGILE EARTH
    HIFF XR Showcase
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    This AR experience will be FREE to the public and will be available in-person at the Entrepreneurs Sandbox NOV 20 & 21 from 12:00PM – 6:00PM. Often compared to a magnificent blue marble from the perspective of outer space, planet Earth appears almost entirely blue. This view is not far off: the vast majority of water on Earth belongs to our Oceans, which take up approximately 71% of the Earth’s surface. The other 29% consists of continents and islands. Our planet can often seem larger than life, and vast beyond measure. But in relative terms, when it comes to climate change we are all closely connected. Global warming impacts water cycles by influencing when, where, and how much precipitation falls. Over time, rising temperatures create more droughts, floods, and severe weather. The impact of these water crises is highly unequal, which exacerbates gender, income, and sociopolitical inequity. The flowing of mist in this AR experience is a metaphor for the fragility of our collective environment on Earth. To view Fragile Earth is to reflect on the impact humans have on our planet’s delicate ecosystem. More works at HIFF41 by Taiji Terasaki: https://www.taijiterasaki.com/hiff41-works 
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    Canada
    FROM EARTH TO SKY
    Documentary Panorama, Indigenous Lens
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    Seven diverse Indigenous architects from North America express the vitality of Indigenous architecture through process, design, and build. Tammy Eagle Bull (the first Native American woman to be a licensed architect in North America), Wanda Dalla Costa, Alfred Waugh, Brian Porter, Daniel Glenn, Patrick Stewart and Douglas Cardinal, considered the first Indigenous architect in North America. They all define their individuality through their artistry, and bond in their philosophy and principles of protecting the planet. They are diverse in gender, age and artistic approach, yet they find common ground in their Indigenous identity. Each architect has harrowing tales of dysfunction, poverty, violence and assimilation, but they all overcame adversity to become the top in their field. They exemplify success. The film culminates as they travel to the Venice Biennale of Architecture (with a previous stop in Aotearoa, where they collaborate and share knowledge with Maori colleagues), to present for the first time in history Indigenous Architecture from North America in a spectacular installation. An event of unprecedented importance where they are honored on the world stage of architecture. Together these Indigenous architects are changing the world, influencing humanity to consider the ways in which the built environment has impact on our planet and guiding us to the possibility of a sustainable future. -Anderson Le
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    United States
    FROM HERE
    Panorama Shorts
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    Korean American Jess is stricken with the news of an anti-Asian hate crime. Going about her day, she is forced to deal with micro-aggressions and a racist verbal assault. Jess turns to her loving mother for support, but learns that as a transracial adoptee in America, love isn't always enough.
  • United States
    Future Filmmakers Showcase
    DKII Future Filmmakers Showcase
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    HIFF continues the partnership with the Daniel K. Inouye Institute, to build a better future by working with students and young filmmakers who have a powerful voice to reimagine a new world. The DKII Filmmaker Showcase features student finalists selected to showcase at HIFF and will also have the opportunity to meet a celebrity youth ambassador in a private Q&A discussion and Awards Ceremony. Past guests include actors Phillipa Soo, Jacob Batalon, and Harry Shum, Jr.  Earlier this year, actor Sung Kang hosted a workshop with the students preparing for this year's showcase. During the festival,  students are invited to celebrate their films in a private reception with DKII keynote speaker and HIFF41 Maverick Award Honoree Destin Daniel Cretton. HIFF is thrilled to expand the Future Filmmakers beyond the islands of Hawai’i through a new partnership with the Ted Stevens Foundation and Perseverance Theater in Alaska. The HIFF41 DKII Future Filmmakers Showcase will highlight a student short film made in Alaska along with the Hawai'i submissions. This year's students were invited to make films with the theme of “The Greatest Generation & the COVID Generation: Hope & Resiliency in Unprecedented Times”  Similar to those of the “Greatest Generation,” or those who were shaped by the Great Depression and World War II, how will youth of the “COVID Generation” now decide how history will define them?  The films offer the students’ perspective on what it will take for us as a state, a nation, and a world to move forward. I also want to add that these films are free on watch.hiff.org for all audiences to view internationally. "Like the greatest generation that grew up during the Great Depression and fought courageously in WWII, our youth today have faced the unprecedented challenge of COVID with a measure of resiliency. As we now turn the corner on this global pandemic, we have the opportunity to learn from our youth how this experience has impacted them and influenced their hopes for the future." - Jennifer Sabas, Director of the Daniel K. Inouye Institute. Future Filmmakers Showcase presents these student films virtually for free during the festival: ALONE TOGETHER by Isabelle Munjar, Mei Kanada, Katelyn Lopes, Jeanine Longboy, Marlon Utrera, Mei Kawakami GENZ: MOVING FORWARD TOGETHER by Isabella Rodriguez HOPE FOR THE COVID GENERATION by Shiley Levinson Beatrix, Beatrix Ingeman, Leah Maroney IMAGINING A LESS COMPLICATED WORLD by Kai Plumley INSIDE THE MIND OF A HOPELESS CREATIVE by Jacob Chong KEEP GROWING  by Danilla Monk, Alina Otsuji, Chase Douglass, Yana Lahoda MEANWHILE, IN PARADISE by alex Awaya, Kaitlyn Chang, Jess Braden Cruz NOSTALGIA by Archie Nitura REALIZATION: A GENERATIONAL AWAKENING by Inez Anderson, Taylor Vitarelli SENT by Jaqueline Cano SILENCE  by Amia Datts-Voluntad THE SNEEZE by Abby Suk, Evan Pan, Connor Tessaro THE TRIBULATIONS OF APPRECIATION by Faith Christy Soliven TO: THE PAST, FROM: THE FUTURE by Lucas Roberts TOGETHER by Noah Agena, Kieran Monahan, Ryan Watanabe, Cade Tanaka THE GREATEST GENERATIONS by Miracle Antonio THE COVID GENERATION; OUR GENERATION by Cecil Anderson IV HERO'S CLIMB by Elizabeth Hope - Spotlight on Alaska with the support of Ted Stevens Foundation and Perseverance Theater
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    United States
    GALAPAGOS
    Green Screen Shorts
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    Expecting one of the last pristine paradises on earth, a group of young filmmakers discovers how fragile and endangered the unique ecosystem of the Galapagos Islands is.
  • United States
    GENZ: MOVING FORWARD TOGETHER
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    See how students of GenZ will use their experience from the pandemic to move forward together.
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    South Korea
    GEORGIA
    Spotlight on Korea Shorts
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    Based on a true story. When the police refuse to investigate their daughter's alleged suicide, two computer-illiterate parents decide to design a protest banner.
  • Japan
    GIFT OF FIRE
    Spotlight on Japan
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    During World War II, the Japanese government commissions a young scientist named Shu to research the theory of "splitting the atom" in order to develop a bomb that could change the course of the war. As Shu feels the pressure to complete his mission from the safety of his lab, his brother Hiroyuki fights on the front lines. Moreover, their best friend Setsu struggles with her feelings for them as the war gradually tears them and their nation apart. By the end, Shu has to choose between his devotion to science, his country, and his sense of humanity. GIFT OF FIRE is an alternative addition to the number of stories told in cinema about the most devastating conflicts of the 20th century, told from the perspectives of civilians and scientists with a particularly complicated relationship to the subject of inquiry. Based on the actual historical events of Japan's own involvement in the nuclear arms race at that time, it focuses on the lives of three young people at the core of the drama, blending the romanticism of scientific exploration and the moral conundrums that may emerge in the process as well. -Lee Ngo
  • Australia
    GIRLS CAN'T SURF
    Surf Cinema
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    Set in the peroxide fluoro circus of 80's surfing, GIRLS CAN'T SURF follows the trailblazing life of the women who paved the way in the world of professional surfing and describes the grit it took to survive years of misogyny within the sport. Featuring champion professional surfers such as Jodie Cooper, Frieda Zamba, Pauline Menczer, Lisa Andersen, Pam Burridge, Wendy Botha, Layne Beachley and more, these women recount the details of their beginnings in surfing and the challenges-such as misogyny and homophobia-that accompanied them. While their dreams were simple, the surrounding circumstances were not. Most male athletes bullied and dehumanized female surfers. But these women were not so easily intimidated. Without sponsors or money, they packed their bags and lived in vans to join the pro competitions across the globe. They endured the usual amount of body aches an athlete experiences, but also had to push hard to be accepted on bigger waves and highly lucrative competitions. Spotlighting the world of 80s and 90s professional surfing, GIRLS CAN'T SURF highlights the trials and tribulations of being a woman who just wants to surf, ultimately challenging the status quo and changing the male-dominating world of surfing forever. -Kanani Lyons
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    United States
    GONE CAMPING
    Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
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    Lei, a painfully awkward tween, is dying to go to a sleepover tonight filled with boys and booze. The only problem is that Cindy, Lei's over-enthusiastic mother, has other plans for the two of them. It's the night of their annual mother-daughter camping trip! When it begins pouring rain, Cindy sets up their campsite right in the middle of their living room. Tensions grow as Cindy desperately tries to connect with Lei, who no longer finds spending time with her mom cool. The more that Cindy pushes, the more that Lei pulls away, causing their night to explode.
  • South Korea
    GOOD DEAL
    Spotlight on Korea
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    A once promising baseball star is constantly hunted by two hitmen when a young boy asks him to sell his baseball jacket. A high school student acquires a sleep control device to help him with his exams, and ends up getting more acquainted with the seller in the process. A prison guard buys a guitar and plays one last song with a rock band after he finds out that his number has been called up... to be an executioner. An English tutor and amateur journalist investigating a murder case makes an offer to gain information on the involvement of ... a once promising baseball star. GOOD DEAL is a woven tapestry of the interconnected lives of people striving through the day-to-day of contemporary Korean society. Quite a spectrum of themes are covered: romance, crime, sports, famly, work, and even Russian literature! As each of its characters seek to make a "deal" with another person to help them stay ahead or even stay alive, they find their interactions much more involved and complex than they first thought. Written and directed by Cho Kyuong-ho, the film mixes wickedly dark humor and sincere sentimentality through its interwoven yet still seamlessly linear style of storytelling. -Lee Ngo
  • Green Screen Shorts
    Green Screen Shorts
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    PLAYS WITH: CALL OF THE HEART | Director: Harun Guler CITIZENS OF THE GREAT BARRIER REEF | Director: Tom Abood FISHPOND: LOKO I‘A | Director: Leah Warshawski GALAPAGOS | Director: Antoine Janssens HE KAU HEAHEA A HI‘IAKA | Director: Ty Sanga I AM A PLASTIC | Director: Richard Hamasaki LIFE BELOW WATER | Director: Brian Schulz PILI KA MO‘O | Director: Justyn Ah Chong PLANT HEIST | Directors: Gabriel de Cuba, Chelsi de Cuba ZONA | Director: Masami Kawai
  • China
    GUIDANCE
    Spotlight on China
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    In the not-too-distant future, humanity slowly rebuilds itself a decade after The Great War. Believing that the ability to lie is the root cause of the devastating conflict, a tech entrepreneur creates a pill containing a nanotechnology app known as "Guidance" that allegedly will make everyone more enlightened. Once swallowed, an A.I. "installs" in the person's nervous system and aids their ability to detect deception in other people among other enhancements. A young couple goes on a weekend retreat to the countryside and they begin to use Guidance. However, recent events have potentially compromised their trust in one another. With the tech in their bodies, the couple tries to subvert Guidance in the hopes of saving their relationship before it's too late. With a near-constant beautiful score and energetic cinematic style, GUIDANCE is an ambitious yet focused exploration of relationships with a science fiction twist. -Lee Ngo
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    South Korea
    HAIRY MONSTER
    Spotlight on Korea Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Soyeong, an aspiring screenwriter who still lives with her mother, finds her mother's boyfriend Ungseop's hair irritating. While being pressured by Ungseop to become financially independent, one day, she starts to see a 'hairy monster'. She tries hard to prove that the horrible monster is in fact her mother's boyfriend, but only she can see this fantasy created by her longing for her dead father and the burden of being an adult. The elaborate portrayal of the hair creature an the development of Soyeong's state of mind make the fantasy convincing.
  • Hong Kong SAR China
    HAND ROLLED CIGARETTE
    Spotlight on Hong Kong
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    Wong Kar Wai's CHUNGKING EXPRESS introduced audiences to the neon-slick world of Chungking Mansions, portrayed as a hotbed of drug trafficking largely facilitated by South Asian immigrants. Wong's stereotypical portrayal of Hong Kong's immigrant community is revisited and updated in Chan Kin Long's HAND ROLLED CIGARETTE, a stylish crime neo-noir that throws it back to the golden age of Hong Kong cinema. Mani (Bipin Karma), a young South Asian immigrant, hides from the gang members pursuing him in the Chungking Mansions apartment of one Kwan Chiu (Gordon Lam Ka Tung), a washed-up British Chinese soldier abandoned by the colonial government after the handover of Hong Kong to China in 1997. When Kwan discovers Mani, he soon learns that he has upset the same gang boss, Big Mouth Tai (Ben Yuen), that Kwan is in serious debt to. While Kwan agrees to shelter Mani, he demands payment and taunts him with ethnic slurs. But the two men gradually bond over their increasingly dire circumstances, becoming far more involved in each other's lives than they'd planned to be. -Emerson Goo
  • United States
    HBA ANIMATION CLASS
    Student Showcase
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    A film produced by Hawai‘i Baptist Academy Animation class students. The students learned how to give their characters the illusion of life using the Harmony Animation program.
  • United States
    HE KAU HEAHEA A HI‘IAKA
    Green Screen Shorts, Pacific Showcase Shorts
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    Created and featured in the 2021 Annual Kamehameha Schools Song Contest, this is a story of climate change from a native Hawaiian perspective featuring the mele (songs) and hula (dance) of Kamehameha School High School students.
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    South Korea
    HEAVEN: TO THE LAND OF HAPPINESS
    Asian Cinerama, Spotlight on Korea
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    Director Im Sang-soo (THE HOUSEMAID) returns with his most endearing and heartfelt film to date. Busan IFF 2021 Opening Night Film, HEAVEN: TO THE LAND OF HAPPINESS is a fresh take on the fugitive buddy road movie (à la THELMA & LOUISE). Prisoner 203 (Choi Min-sik) only has a few months left on his sentence, but when he finds out he only has two weeks left to live, he decides he needs to make a break for it. In his dash to flee the hospital, he unintentionally lures hospital worker Nam Sik (Park Hae-il) into the getaway car, well...hearse. Nam-sik, it turns out, is not too displeased with this arrangement, as he was about to face imminent arrest for stealing medicine from the hospital pharmacy. Afflicted with a rare disease, Nam-sik relies on very expensive drugs to stay alive, forcing him into a life of thievery. Realizing there is no turning back, this unlikely pair go on the run, hunted not only by the police but also the gangster owners of the stolen hearse.. With a pitch perfect blend of drama, action, tragedy, and humour, HEAVEN: TO THE LAND OF HAPPINESS delivers both thrills and heartrending moments bound to move the audience. And unsurprisingly, Choi Min-sik and Park Hae-il both lead with stellar performances as the unlikely fugitive duo, forging a hit in the making. -Anna Page
  • United States
    HERO'S CLIMB
    DKII Future Filmmakers Showcase
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    Red attempts to climb to the top of a mountain she used to often visit with her sibling, Blue, and falls. Blue finds her, and brings her to the mountain peak, and they are reunited. Student filmmaker, Elizabeth Hope, is a Tlingit and Inupiaq artist in 8th grade who primarily focuses on the literary and visual. She takes inspiration from the land, and culture around her, and uses that in her pieces. Mahalo to our partners Daniel K. Inouye Institute, Ted Stevens Foundation, and Perseverance Theatre for this spotlight on Alaska!
  • HIFF TALKS: DOCUMENTARY FILMMAKING
    HIFF Talks
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    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire panel discussion. How has the documentary form emerged as one of the most vital and exciting branches of filmmaking today? Advances in technologies for acquisition, editing, and innovative distribution have changed the face of documentary filmmaking. This panel will explore the expanding repertoire of production formats available to the documentarist. With the advent of hybrid narrative/documentary forms to film and television, this panel will consider future trends in documentary topics, production styles, and distribution mechanisms in this fast-changing marketplace of ideas. PANELISTS ALEXANDRE O. PHILIPPE is a Swiss film director best known for the documentary films DOC OF THE DEAD, THE PEOPLE VS. GEORGE LUCAS, and the 2017 post-modern documentary examination of the Psycho shower scene directed by Alfred Hitchcock entitled 78/52 which premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. His latest film, THE TAKING, is an official selection of this year's HIFF. LISA D'APOLITO is an Emmy nominated producer, director and archivist. Lisa's film documentary, LOVE, GILDA, was selected as the opening night film of the Tribeca Film Festival, was distributed theatrically through Magnolia Pictures, had a broadcast premiere on CNN and was nominated for 2 creative Emmy's. She is currently in production on a new documentary about Hawai‘i-born cult director Albert Pyun. GEMMA CUBERO DEL BARRIO is a Spanish/American documentary director and producer. For the last 22 years she has gained a breath of experience producing non-fiction documentary films and original programming around the world. In 2006, she founded Talcual Films.  Her documentaries include: ELLA ES EL MATADOR (She Is The Matador), OTTOMATICAKE, OUR ATOLL SPEAKS, and THE ISLAND IN ME.
  • HIFF TALKS: FILM FESTIVAL UNDERCOVER, A STRATEGY WORKSHOP FOR FILMMAKERS...
    HIFF Talks
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    This event is FREE and will be presented LIVE  and in person at the Kahala Theatres. RSVP below to attend the workshop. Want to know the inside scoop about how to succeed on the film festival circuit? You’re in the right place when Sharon Badal (Vice President of Filmmaker Relations and Shorts Programming for the Tribeca Film Festival) gives a fun behind-the-scenes workshop especially designed for HIFF 2021 filmmakers. Topics include: The Road Map - Understanding Festivals Buried Treasure - Submissions Secrets Alphabet City – Writing a Great Logline Superpowers - Improving Your Odds At the end of the workshop filmmakers will feel energized, empowered and ready to take on the festival circuit with confidence! SHARON BADAL is vice president of filmmaker relations and shorts programming for the Tribeca Film Festival and has been with the festival since its inception. She spent ten years in distribution and marketing for three major studios followed by extensive live-event producing experience. Sharon is on the faculty at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, recognized as a Distinguished Teacher. She created and teaches the “Producing in London” summer study abroad program along with New York courses in producing, screenwriting, and a colloquium for graduating film & television seniors. Sharon is the author of “Swimming Upstream – A Lifesaving Guide to Short Film Distribution,” published by Focal Press. She has been a panelist/juror at numerous festivals and for industry organizations globally. She received her B.F.A. in film and television production and her M.A. in cinema studies and business, both from NYU.
  • HIFF TALKS: GREEN SCREEN PANEL DISCUSSION
    Green Screen, HIFF Talks
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    This live discussion has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire conversation. In this special virtual panel, we speak with filmmakers and environmental activists and practitioners from HIFF's GREEN SCREEN section. They will discuss the inspiration to tell these stories, the power of media to incite, educate and formalize a call-to-action against the climate change. From Hong Kong, to Bangladesh, to New Zealand, and right here in Hawai‘i, we will discuss how this crisis unites us all, and how we can affect real change for all of our survival. Panelists will include: Leah Warshawski (FISHPOND: LOKO I‘A), Niva Kay (HIGH TIDE DON'T HIDE), Emily McDowell (HIGH TIDE DON'T HIDE), Joanne Bowers (reFASHIONED), Katherine Lou Davies (reFASHIONED), Caroline Cox (FOOD FOR THE REST OF US), and Flame Porter (FOOD FOR THE REST OF US). The panel will be moderated by Christina Hom, Senior Vice President at Morgan Stanley Hawaii.
  • HIFF TALKS: IN CONVERSATION WITH DANA LEDOUX MILLER
    HIFF Talks
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    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire conversation with Dana Ledoux Miller. We sit down with Dana Ledoux Miller, a HIFF alumnus, UH Manoa graduate, and this year's Pacific Islanders in Communications Trailblazer Award honoree.  Dana is currently co-showrunning Netflix's UNTITLED THAI CAVE RESCUE limited series produced by SKG and Jon M Chu. Previously, she was an Executive Producer on LAST RESORT for Seven Bucks Productions and Feigco Entertainment and set up at Quibi as a part of their Break The Room initiative. Prior to that, she was Co-EP on AMC’s KEVIN CAN GO F*CK HIMSELF and the supervising producer on AMC’s LODGE 49. She is also adapting COSMOLOGY OF MONSTERS for Chernin with Destin Daniel Cretton attached to direct. Dana was a producer on ABC’s DESIGNATED SURVIVOR and also wrote for Netflix’s NARCOS and HBO’s THE NEWSROOM. She is a graduate of the Academy for Creative Media at the University of Hawai’i Manoa and lives in Los Angeles with her family.
  • HIFF TALKS: STORM LAKE WITH CIVIL BEAT
    HIFF Talks
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    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire conversation. In partnership with Honolulu Civil Beat, HIFF presents a special conversation with the directors of STORM LAKE, Beth Levison and Jerry Risius. The conversation will be moderated by Civil Beat reporter Chad Blair. Chad and the filmmakers will discuss the making of STORM LAKE, as well as issues centered around the importance of on-the-ground journalism and local news in today's rapidly changing and diffuse media landscape. About The Panelists: Jerry Risius, Director & Cinematographer Iowa-born and raised, Risius brings over 25 years experience as a Director of Photography on such projects as THE KINGMAKER (Toronto Int’l Film Festival 2019),  GENERATION WEALTH (Sundance 2018),  and SEEING ALLRED (Sundance 2018/Netflix) to STORM LAKE, his directorial debut. Beth Levison, Director & Producer NYC-based, Levison’s most recent producing credits include WOMEN IN BLUE (Tribeca Film Festival, 2019) MADE IN BOISE (AFI DOCS, 2018) and  32 PILLS (Hot Docs 2017).  STORM LAKE marks her return to directing after a 10-year pause.  She is a co-founder of the Documentary Producers Alliance and an AMPAS member. Chad Blair, Honolulu Civil Beat Chad Blair has been a writer, editor and teacher in Honolulu for more than 30 years. His job as politics and opinion editor for Honolulu Civil Beat is to cover Hawaii, especially how political and policy decisions impact people and communities.
  • HIFF TALKS: THE ACTOR'S JOURNEY
    HIFF Talks
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to watch the entire panel discussion. Although Hawai‘i's film industry is burgeoning and perhaps more vital than ever as "Hollyood's backlot," the drive for the local creative communities is to create original intellectual properties and provide local actors to shine in authentic and artistically relevant roles. In this panel, we discuss the actor's journey in an ever-changing media landscape and the spike of TV and film production for major streaming platforms, which seems limitless. The panel will focus on examples of content being created by and about marginalized communities and go into the nitty gritty of being a BIPOC actor, working in Hollywood and Hawai‘i, and how the panelists' careers are changing with the times. PANELISTS Filipino American and Hawaii born actor KIMEE BALMILERO is best known for her regular role as Medical Examiner Dr. Noelani Cunha on CBS’ HAWAII 5-0 and MAGNUM P.I. While living in Los Angeles, she studied improv & sketch comedy at the Uprights Citizens Brigade Theatre in Hollywood and performs with the ongoing show FILIPINO AF whenever she is back in town. TIM CHIOU is a Taiwanese American actor who has played a number of television and film roles. He most notably played  venture capitalist Ed Chen on Season 4 of HBO's SILICON VALLEY, Michael ‘Thirty Mike’ Chen in SEAL TEAM, and in films PLUS ONE CRUSH THE SKULL and I WAS A SIMPLE MAN. KANOA GOO is an actor and writer, known for I WAS A SIMPLE MAN (2021), ENDINGS, BEGINNINGS (2019) and OTHER PEOPLE (2016). AMY HILL is an American actress and stand-up comedian. She is known for often playing grandmother or motherly type roles in both live-action and voice roles from ALL-AMERICAN GIRL, 50 FIRST DATES, CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND, and LILO & STITCH. She currently plays Teuila "Kumu" Tuileta, and is part of the main cast of MAGNUM PI, currently in its fourth season.
  • HIFF TALKS: THE PANTHERS Panel Discussion
    HIFF Talks, Indigenous Lens, Pacific Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire panel discussion. Join us for a special panel discussion with the team behind the groundbreaking series THE PANTHERS, making its Hawai‘i Premiere at HIFF41. In this conversation, the creators and writers behind this series will discuss the origins of the series, the history of The Polynesian Panthers, and the making of the show. Panelists will include Miki Magasiva, Tom Hern, Vea Mafile’o, Halaifonua Finau. The discussion will be moderated by HIFF Artistic Director Anderson Le. About THE PANTHERS 1974, Auckland, New Zealand. Will ‘Ilolahia, the black sheep of his Tongan family and “The Professor” of the streets, is sick of seeing his community stuck in a broken system. When Trump-esque Prime Minister, Robert Muldoon, comes to power, he wreaks havoc; fueling the divide between white and Polynesian New Zealanders and commencing racially-targeted Immigration raids. Inspired by the Black Panther movement in the USA, Will and a group of young street gangsters and university students form The Polynesian Panthers, to fight the system and become the history-making Revolutionaries that their community so desperately need them to be.
  • HIFF TALKS: THE PAU HANA YEARS IN CONVERSATION Presented by...
    HIFF Talks, Made In Hawai‘i
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire panel discussion. ʻUluʻulu: The Henry Kuʻualoha Giugni Moving Image Archive of Hawaiʻi presents a free online panel in tandem with the special presentation of PBS Hawai‘i's classic series PAU HANA YEARS.The panel will feature special guests including producers, historians, archivists and experts familiar with the behind-the-scenes work that went into creating and preserving this special series from the 1970s.    Panelists for the discussion will include:  Zackery Helm, Hawaiian Homes Commissioner for the island of Molokaʻi,  Ron Mizutani, President & CEO PBS Hawaiʻi; Joy Chong-Stannard, Independent Producer/Director; and Janel Quirante, Head Archivist, ʻUluʻulu, Hawaiʻiʻs moving image archive.  The panel will be moderated by Heather Haunani Giugni of ʻUluʻulu.
  • HIFF XR WEEKEND LAUNCH PARTY
    HIFF Talks, HIFF XR Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    To kick off the HIFF XR New Media Exhibit, join us at BoxJelly for our XR Artists Spotlight Talk with SUTU and JULIANA LOH on Friday, November 19th 5:00pm - 8:00pm. You’ll hear about their personal journeys as artists and how it has adapted to changing technologies. Learn about the inspiring opportunities unfolding for digital creators everywhere. After the 1-hour talk, you’ll be able to check out the Augmented Reality (AR) pieces by the artists, including BREONNA’S GARDEN, BIG ORANGE FISH, and MODERN POLAXIS. Food and drinks will be available. RSVP required.
  • HIFF41 ‘OHANA DAY AT BISHOP MUSEUM
    Keiki Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    THIS EVENT IS INCLUDED WITH BISHOP MUSEUM ADMISSION Bishop Museum members are FREE | Not a member? Join today!  On SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 7TH, join HIFF and Bishop Museum for a special presentation of HIFF's Keiki Shorts Program, plus a Return Engagement of award winning short film KAPAEMAHU (HIFF 2020). The selection of short films will loop continuously from 10AM - 5PM, and viewing will be included with admission to the museum. Please bring your own lawn chairs and blankets for lawn seating. Chairs are not provided. FILM PROGRAM: BLUE COOLER | Director: Laura Margulies BLUE COOLER captures small moments of life in Hawai‘i through a montage of richly painted and colorful brush strokes, sounds and images. Like home movies that spark an atmosphere or feeling, the moving paintings in BLUE COOLER pop with familiar experiences and vivid observations. The animation is hand painted frame by frame using oil paints. BLUSH | Director: Jon Mateo BLUSH follows the journey of a stranded horticulturist-astronaut’s chances for survival after he crash lands on a desolate dwarf planet. When an ethereal visitor arrives, the once-lone traveler discovers the joy in building a new life and realizes the universe has delivered astonishing salvation. HOW TO CATCH A TAOTAOMONA | Director: Neil Tinkham An overlooked boy tries to convince his skeptical friends to capture a mythological figure in the jungles of Guam. KAPAEMAHU | Directors: Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu, Joe Wilson, Dean Hamer Long ago, four extraordinary beings of dual male and female spirit brought the healing arts to Hawaii and imbued their powers in four giant boulders. The stones still stand on Waikiki Beach, but their true story has been hidden - until now. MILK | Director: Celia Jaspers In a small town square a young girl counts her savings. Happy with her sum, she skips to the country store where candy is arrayed in enticing glass jars. After careful consideration she selects a giant, coloured lollipop, then joins the queue behind an old man buying bread and milk. Her glee however, is stemmed when she witnesses the old man unable to afford his purchases. SINA MA TINIRAU | Directors: Vilsoni Hereniko, Gavin Arucan When a prince is cursed to become an eel and has to win the love of a beautiful woman to become human again, he gifts her with his body in the form of a coconut palm tree in a seductive display. Set on Rotuma in Fiji, this classic tale of unconditional love is given new meaning and relevance today as it explores issues of conservation, tradition versus freedom, and prejudice against black skin among Polynesians. THE TINY TREE | Director: Annie Cusick Wood Space explorers, Matt and his Dad emergency land on a dying planet. Matt finds a magical seed, and wants to keep it. However, this seed is the planet’s last chance for survival. With upbeat songs and adventures with alien fluffy creatures, a two headed caterpillar, and a one-legged purple Bird, Matt and Dad get caught up in a galactic wind storm, stuck in a space cave and with the help of their new friends, learn the value of looking after the planet and each other. YUAN YUAN AND THE HOLLOW MONSTER | Director: Catherine Chen Eight-year-old Jackie is determined to protect her newest pet, a tiny turtle named Lucy, at all costs. Even if it means chasing down a massive hurricane called the Hollow Monster. CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT VISITING BISHOP MUSEUM.
  • Taiji Tarasaki KAIMANA
    United States
    HIFF41 AND TAIJI TERASAKI PRESENT: KAIMANA
    anemptytextlline
    THIS EXPERIENCE IS INCLUDED WITH BISHOP MUSEUM ADMISSION Bishop Museum Ho‘okipa Lawn November 5 - 28, 2021 Bishop Museum members are FREE  | Not a member? Join today!  Hawai'i-based artist Taiji Terasaki presents KAIMANA – an outdoor, walk-through art and film installation offering a cinematic work projected onto a dramatic, interactive mist curtain. The images projected onto the mist-screen reflect memories of old Hawai'i and Pacific island life, highlighting fond memories of the Waikīkī Natatorium’s community and vibrant ocean culture. Through this provocative lens, archival photographs and recently discovered film footage conjure up the nostalgic enchantment of Hawai‘i’s swimming and surfing identity, emphasizing the bonds between architecture and activity, between place and life. Bishop Museum COVID-19 Safety Protocols
  • HIGH TIDE
    New Zealand
    HIGH TIDE, DON'T HIDE
    Film For Thought, Green Screen, Hilo Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Teens have been the leaders of far-reaching, rebellious movements for all of history. From Joan of Arc to the Vietnam protests, young adults have gritted their teeth and loudly demanded that change needs to happen immediately. In recent years, teens have begun advocating for institutional change regarding the climate crisis. In particular, a group of teens in New Zealand, following in the inspirational footsteps of Greta Thunberg, confront their leaders in hopes of crafting a better future for themselves and their children. Despite their genuine care, the group is met with resistance due to their bouts of inequality. When a young indigenous women from South Auckland points out their failure to include indigenous people in their movement-particularly, their inability to highlight that the indigenous community suffers more harshly from the effects of climate change, and receive harsher punishment and intimidation from the state for advocating for it-she sparks the attention of the white-led movement. HIDE TIDE, DON'T HIDE is an intrepid portrait of varying communities, attempting to save the world and change the movement from within. -Kanani Lyons This film is presented as part of the Film For Thought program in partnership with the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities. CLICK HERE to view a special panel discussion with the team behind the film, the Rebel Film Collective, moderated by scholar Jaimey Hamilton Faris. CLICK HERE to read a companion essay by scholar Jaimey Hamilton Faris.
  • United States
    HOMESICK
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    A teenage boy embarks on a journey alone from South Korea to America to study abroad. During his journey, he faces the feeling of reminiscing about his past, feeling isolated and distant from his memories. Thus, the feeling of being homesick.
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    United States
    HONOLULU'S NAUGHTIEST NIGHTCLUB OWNER
    Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts, Maui Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This short biographical documentary is about former Honolulu nightclub owner Jack Cione. During the 1960's and 70's he earned a notorious reputation by being the first person to operate several adult clubs on Oahu. Today at age 94, Jack continues to produce variety shows at his retirement home.
  • United States
    HOPE FOR THE COVID GENERATION
    anemptytextlline
    Interviews with middle schoolers about their hopes during the COVID-19 pandemic, and how today relates to the Greatest Generation.
  • HOSTAGE: MISSING CELEBRITY hero image
    South Korea
    HOSTAGE: MISSING CELEBRITY
    Kaua‘i Showcase, Maui Showcase, Spotlight on Korea
    anemptytextlline
    One of the biggest Korean hits of the year, HIFF is thrilled to present HOSTAGE: MISSING CELEBRITY as a special Gala screening event at HIFF41. The debut feature of writer/director Pil Kam-sung, and produced by action veteran Ryoo Seung-wan, HOSTAGE is based on the 2015 Chinese film SAVING MR. WU. However this version has a distinctly Korean twist, and this time the lead actor plays...himself. What happens when life imitates art? Korean superstar actor Hwang Jung-min is about to find out. Jung-min has reached the pinnacle of his career, recognized as one of Korea's top leading men, and starring in some of the biggest action thrillers of the last decade. Resting on his laurels after the latest movie premiere, he is taken aback when he is accosted on the street by a group of boorish thugs. However, these thugs have more in mind than just jeering at the actor, and Hwang Jung-min soon finds himself kidnapped and tied up in a dank room with another young woman looking worse for the wear. When the brutal thugs request an immediate ransom, Jung-min must muster up all of his acting skills to mastermind his way out of this real and present danger. As he soon learns, this isn't like the movies. -Anna Page
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    Guam
    HOW TO CATCH A TAOTAOMONA
    Keiki Shorts, Pacific Showcase, Pacific Showcase Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    An overlooked boy tries to convince his skeptical friends to capture a mythological figure in the jungles of Guam.
  • United States
    ʻIKE ʻĀINA: A SENSE OF PLACE
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This virtual huakaʻi is created by four of our spring 2021 Huliau Environmental Filmmaking Club students. In this huakaʻi film, students visit Kanu Ka ʻIke's "Poly-Forestry" (Polynesian Agroforestry) project at Hōkūnui farm in Piʻiholo where they learn more about "ʻOhana-style planting" and how, just like plants in a forest, we each have an important role to play in our community.
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    United States
    I AM A PLASTIC
    Green Screen Shorts, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    I AM A PLASTIC is an experimental film featuring Richard Hamasaki's amplified poetry soundtrack interwoven with spoken word, music, underwater footage, photography and concrete poetry. Published in Read Water: An Anthology (Locked Horn Press, San Diego: 2020), Hamasaki's poem ironically comments upon humankind's dependence upon and revulsion toward plastic products - inspired by Sir Mix-a-Lot's 1992 recording "I'm Your New God," a poignant tongue-in-cheek testament to the devastating effects of crack cocaine addiction. I AM A PLASTIC features poet, filmmaker and producer Richard Hamasaki, typography and images by artist and concrete poet Thad Higa with Rich Rath on digital guitar. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE MADE IN HAWAII SHORTS PROGRAM 3  PLAYS WITH: Made in Hawai‘i Shorts 3 CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE GREEN SCREEN SHORTS PLAYS WITH: Green Screen Shorts
  • I WAS A SIMPLE MAN hero image
    United States
    I WAS A SIMPLE MAN
    Centerpiece Film, Hilo Showcase, Kau Ka Hōkū Award Nominee, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made In Hawai‘i
    anemptytextlline
    Ghosts become flesh and blood, and the living learn to die in I WAS A SIMPLE MAN, the long-awaited sophomore feature from Christopher Makoto Yogi (AUGUST AT AKIKO'S, HIFF 2018). Masao (Steve Iwamoto) is an aging man with few companions other than his dog, and their life on Oahu's North Shore initially seems tranquil and undisturbed. But when he receives news from his doctors that he's not long for this world, his life's regrets and the sources of his isolation begin to surface, like a slowly rising tide. Previously distant sons and daughters trickle into Masao's home as he becomes bed-ridden, navigating his end-of-life needs as well as their own conflicted feelings about caring for a man who was absent from their lives. Most mysteriously, Masao's late wife, Grace (Constance Wu), appears to him, triggering flashbacks to the storied past Masao must learn to confront. I WAS A SIMPLE MAN is a languorous and haunting character study that intertwines personal and historical traumas across the sweep of Hawai‘i's long 20th century. What does it take to come face-to-face with the past, and to reckon with it? -Emerson Goo
  • United States
    I WILL BE YOUR BREATH
    ACM UHM Showcase, Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Throughout I Will Be Your Breath, Kamahina learns about her great-grandmother and what she had to go through as a Hawai‘ian woman in the early 1900s, Kamahina understands her great grandmother's history and connects with her roots. Kamahina's journey is shown through the depiction of the forest taking over her house. In the same time period, her great-grandmother in the forest masters the new culture forced upon her, as a means of survival. This film was produced as part of the Academy for Creative Media at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.
  • ICEBOX
    Surf Cinema
    anemptytextlline
    Love brought Australian expat Joel Stevenson (47) to the opposite side of the world. When he came to Norway, he was prepared to put his surf passion on hold. Little did he know that a world-class barreling wave was waiting around for him in the icy waters of the Oslofjord. This is an exclusive insight in a rare phenomenon kept strictly secret from the rest of the surf community and the outside world. Only the most obsessed and dedicated would ever dare to dream you could find a slabby barrel in these sheltered waters.
  • ICEBOX
    Surf Cinema
    anemptytextlline
    Love brought Australian expat Joel Stevenson (47) to the opposite side of the world. When he came to Norway, he was prepared to put his surf passion on hold. Little did he know that a world-class barreling wave was waiting around for him in the icy waters of the Oslofjord. This is an exclusive insight in a rare phenomenon kept strictly secret from the rest of the surf community and the outside world. Only the most obsessed and dedicated would ever dare to dream you could find a slabby barrel in these sheltered waters.
  • United States
    IMAGINING A LESS COMPLICATED WORLD
    anemptytextlline
    A bored and stressed out 8th grader on pandemic lockdown has had enough of humanity and seeks out a simpler lifestyle…or is at least dreaming about one.
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    Canada
    IN THE SHADOW OF THE PINES
    Documentary Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    In the Shadow of the Pines is an animated short documentary about a difficult father-daughter relationship. Drawing on childhood memories, Anne Koizumi, the filmmaker, explores her upbringing with her Japanese immigrant dad, who was also the janitor at the elementary school she attended. The film explores the idea of shame and how it can shape and define us while also concealing who we can truly become.
  • United States
    INSIDE THE MIND OF A HOPELESS CREATIVE
    anemptytextlline
    He was given a task to write and produce a short film about having hope during a pandemic, he fell asleep. To assist him, his dreams will travel through his brief history of filmmaking to try and discover a reason to have hope while also explaining how he got to that point.
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    South Korea
    INTERPRETING HYUN-JU
    Spotlight on Korea Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Seonyeong, who is an elementary school teacher, cares about Hyeonju who is always alone. Seonyeong begins to pull her aside, talk with her, and listen to her honest words. But as time goes by, things happen differently from her words...
  • ISLANDS hero image
    Canada
    ISLANDS
    Kau Ka Hōkū Award Nominee, Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Joshua, a timid, middle-aged Filipino immigrant in Canada has lived in the comfort of his parents' care his entire life. When his mother suddenly passes and his father's health declines, he quits his job to look after his father full-time despite his inexperience taking care of anyone, including himself. In comes Marisol, an OFW (Overseas Filipino Worker) and caretaker, who moves in to help, as she does not want to return to her life in Kuwait. Anxious of being alone, have Joshua's prayers been answered? Skirting conventions of the sad sack who finally finds love, director Martin Edralin chooses a more subtle path and does so with aplomb. The tone and cadence of ISLANDS is very much in tune with Joshua's demeanor-quiet, calm, with doses of anxiety simmering in the background. Does our protagonist fall in love? Absolutely. But does he live happily ever after? -Anderson Le
  • Japan
    IT'S A SUMMER FILM!
    Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    Hadashi aka "Barefoot" is a samurai cinema-obsessed Japanese high school teen who feels alienated from the rest of her school's film club. She spends most of her time watching the classics with her two best friends: a kendo enthusiast and a sci-fi geek. Tired of competing for attention with the club's director and her incessant rom-com endeavors, Barefoot decides to finally produce her unrealized script Samurai Spring over the course of a summer, encountering some interesting challenges and people along the way. IT'S A SUMMER FILM! is a film for cinephiles, a love letter to the affirmative power of the medium. Starring Japanese pop idol and actress Marika Ito, it's a rare female-focused story about young artists who discover themselves through their craft yet manage to retain a sense of joy along the way and recognize the absurdity of the production experience. Incorporating multiple genres - romantic comedy, swordsmanship, even science-fiction, this film has the potential to inspire others to dust off that screenplay and set up the first take. -Lee Ngo
  • Japan
    ITO
    Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    High school student Ito lives in rural Aomori prefecture in northern Japan. Teased at school for her thick accent and Tsugaru dialect she has become introverted and afraid to speak. Her only creative outlet is the shamisen, which she learned to play in the style of her mother and grandmother. When Ito sees a job advertisement for a 'maid cafe' in Aomori, she sees this as an opportunity to break free of her shyness. Aomori's only maid cafe is a bit different from the ones in Tokyo, and desperate for a new waitress, Ito gets hired on the spot. Slowly but surely Ito begins to emerge from her shell. But when disaster strikes on the job it may be the shamisen that rescues her (and the cafe) after all. Grand Prize Winner at the Osaka Asian Film Festival, this sophomore film from director Satoko Yokohama is charming and heartfelt. Director Yokohama, herself an Aomori native, captures a sense of authenticity in the film, solidified by the breakout performance of the young Ren Komai as Ito. -Anna Page
  • New Zealand
    JAMES & ISEY
    Indigenous Lens, Pacific Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Ahead of her 100th birthday, Isey and her devoted son James prepare for the party of a lifetime. Ngāti Manu woman Isey Cross lives with her youngest son, James, on a farm in Kawakawa, a small town on New Zealand’s North Island. Cheeky and vivacious, the 99-year-old is preparing to celebrate her centenary. Over the next seven days, as James organizes the festivities, director Florian Habicht captures their devoted bond – to each other and to the spirit world – as well as their infectious aroha (love). Habicht does more than just invite audiences to spend an incredible week with this charismatic duo and their friends, however: he also traces significant events and milestones in Aotearoa over the 100 years of Isey’s lifetime. The result is a cheerful and big-hearted observational documentary that recounts the inextricably linked stories of person and place. JAMES & ISEY is an unclassifiable triumph of heart and instinct over the odds. Courtesy of Te Tumu Whakaata Taonga New Zealand Film Commission
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    South Korea
    JANGMI
    Spotlight on Korea Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Jangmi , Insook, Choong Sik three friends go on a trip. Jangmi wants to have a happy trip, but Jangmi is keep worrying about the relationship between Insook and Chong Sik.
  • JOCKEY hero image
    United States
    JOCKEY
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Clifton Collins Jr. stars as a middle-aged jockey whose last shot at glory is complicated by the arrival of a rookie claiming to be his son. Aging jockey Jackson Silva (Clifton Collins Jr.) is forced to come to terms with the limitations of his body, deteriorating after years of working through injuries, in order to train for the final championship of his career. Longtime trainer and sometime friend Ruth (Molly Parker) lends a sympathetic ear and a sought-after horse to increase his chances of that last victory lap. As Jackson reconnects with fellow jockeys who have made similar sacrifices - physically and emotionally - to become elite athletes in their insular sport, a rookie rider arrives claiming to be his son. Director Clint Bentley, with co-writer and frequent collaborator Greg Kwedar, crafts a poignant, realistic character study of a man who grapples with his professional legacy through a growing bond with a young athlete who reminds him of himself. The cinematography often captures the characters, many of whom are actual jockeys, in the gloaming - the glow of the setting sun like a collective memory of their halcyon days in the winner's circle - against the darkening desert plains. (Director Bentley is on solid ground here, as his father was a jockey.) Collins Jr., known for his frequently scene-stealing supporting roles, delivers a brilliant and shattering lead performance here. As Gabriel, the potential heir, Moises Arias's eager-to-please vulnerability not only gives new purpose to a weary Jackson, but also signals a passing of the torch to the next generation of jockeys who will possibly follow a less self-destructive and lonely path. In its narrative restraint, JOCKEY's understated and intimate drama allows Collins Jr.'s face and bearing to channel the full range of Jackson's pain, sorrow, and stubborn yearning. -Robyn Citizen, TIFF
  • South Korea,United States
    JUNHO
    Spotlight on Korea
    anemptytextlline
    When a rising young Korean stage actor, Junho, finds himself embroiled in a terrible scandal, he flees his conservative community of Seoul; leaving his past behind, with hopes of a fresh start. When Junho arrives in San Francisco, we see his almost comedic struggle to communicate among language barriers and cultural differences. We also witness his internal struggle with the deep guilt he feels surrounding a situation from the past in which his inaction left a woman in serious need helpless. A woman who happened to be his best friend, Jin. JUNHO is inspired by actual events related to the #MeToo movement within a South Korean theater circle. Instead of focusing on the moment of abuse, the film depicts the journey of a bystander's life before and after the incident as the portrait of youth and transgression. David Seok Hoon Boo, in his directorial feature debut, intertwines themes of sexual abuse, male culpability, immigration and identity. -Anderson Le
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    United States
    KA HO‘I - THE RETURN
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    In KA HO‘I, an aging Hawaiian War Veteran grapples with the nightmares of his past, and the even scarier thought of being forgotten as the world around him seems to leave him in the dust. One night, he hears a familiar voice calling him from the beach, and what he encounters is beyond anything he could have imagined.
  • United States
    KA MO‘OPUNA I KE ALO, THE GRANDCHILD IN THE PRESENCE
    Indigenous Lens, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts, Pacific Showcase, Pacific Showcase Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    “Ka moʻopuna i ke alo, The grandchild in the presence” is a short documentary honoring the life, work and legacy of Mary Kawena Pukui. Kawena dedicated her life to perpetuating ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, na mea Hawaiʻi, and ʻike kupuna. Through interviews with her eldest grandson, Laʻakea Suganuma; Kanaka ʻŌiwi scholar Noenoe K. Silva; and Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum Historian, DeSoto Brown, we’re given a glimpse into the magnitude of her influence as a scholar, educator and composer. She helped preserve hula kahiko; translated nūpepa, mele and oli at the Bishop Museum; co-authored the 1957 Hawaiian Dictionary; recorded oral histories throughout ka pae ʻāina; and collaborated with social workers at the Queen Liliʻuokalani Children’s center. Plays before THE ISLAND IN ME on NOVEMBER 9TH
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    Canada
    KALINGA (CARE)
    Documentary Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    At the age of six, director Kent Donguines' mother left him and his family to become a nanny. Years later, his film Kalinga (Care) shares the stories of several Filipina caregivers and nannies in Vancouver, bearing witness to their sacrifices as they struggle to reunite with their children and families.
  • Cambodia,United States
    KARMALINK
    Film For Thought, Southeast Asian Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Growing up in the slums of Phnom Penh, Leng Heng has learned about the reality of his world, which is doused in poverty and constant fear of forced relocation. During the day, he plays with his rascal friends and helps his aging grandmother. At night, he dreams of his past life. After being awoken by a memory from his past-life, which also reveals the location of treasure, Leng decides to recruit friends to help him find the fortune and change their lives. Using "nanobugs" as their digital map, a device used to see dreams and experience an augmented reality, Leng invites a young, street-smart orphan from his neighborhood to help their search, promising the lion's share of the treasure to her. But what begins as a playful treasure hunt soon leads to a discovery that could challenge the idea of digital enlightenment or force Leng into total loss of identity. KARMALINK is a buddhist science-fiction film set in the near-future that centers around the exploration of past lives with a boy, Leng Heng, at the center of it all. With director Jake Wachtel at the helm, viewers are taken on a visually-stunning expedition alongside Leng, exploring the techno-philosophic world of rebirth. -Kanani Lyons This film is presented as part of the Film For Thought program in partnership with the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities. CLICK HERE to view an extended discussion with director Jake Wachtel, hosted by scholar Ida Yoshinaga. CLICK HERE to read a companion essay written by scholar Ida Yoshinaga.
  • United States
    KEEP GROWING
    DKII Future Filmmakers Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Pre-pandemic Chase is a productive student who is passionate about the environment. When the lockdown order is issued, he becomes lazy. Not wanting to continue his routine of productivity, his house is a mess, and the things he cares about become neglected. What will make him realize his actions are affecting others?
  • Keiki Shorts
    Keiki Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    The Keiki Shorts Program will be available online for FREE, and will also be screened as part of HIFF Ohana Day at the Bishop Museum. The Bishop Museum screening will be FREE WITH MUSEUM ADMISSION, and the films will play continuously from 10AM - 5PM on SUNDAY NOVEMBER 7TH. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT VISITING BISHOP MUSEUM.   PLAYS WITH: BLUE COOLER | Director: Laura Margulies BLUSH | Director: Jon Mateo HOW TO CATCH A TAOTAOMONA | Director: Neil Tinkham MILK | Director: Celia Jaspers THE TINY TREE | Director: Annie Cusick Wood YUAN YUAN AND THE HOLLOW MONSTER | Director: Catherine Chen
  • KIM MIN-YOUNG OF THE REPORT CARD hero image
    South Korea
    KIM MIN-YOUNG OF THE REPORT CARD
    Spotlight on Korea
    anemptytextlline
    Jung-hee and Min-young are best friends about to graduate high school. They disband their acrostic poetry club to study for their college entrance exams. Min-young ends up at Daegu University (which, she laments, is not actually in Daegu), while Jung-hee languishes in her hometown, working a repetitive job that she claims is just a stepping stone to better things. One day, Min-young invites Jung-hee to meet up with her in Seoul. And so we follow the misadventures of these two girls-some real, some imagined, some remembered-as their lives begin to diverge. Comically understated and disarmingly melancholic, KIM MIN-YOUNG recalls films like TAKE CARE OF MY CAT in its deft rendering of early adulthood's anxieties. But its pared-down style reflects a culture even more heavily mediated by the flatness of digital screens and social media, landing somewhere between an Instagram stories aesthetic and the films of Chantal Akerman. As Jung-hee and Min-young learn, the intimacy of friendship is a painful thing to maintain in a world that keeps its distance. The debut feature for directors Lee Jae-eun and Lim Jisun, KIM MIN-YOUNG won the Korean Competition Grand Prize at the 2021 Jeonju International Film Festival. -Emerson Goo
  • KIN THEORY: INDIGENOUS MEDIA CONNECTIONS ACROSS PASIFIKA AND BEYOND
    HIFF Talks, Indigenous Lens
    anemptytextlline
    This event is FREE to attend and will be presented LIVE via the HIFF Facebook Page and the HIFF Youtube Channel. RSVP below to receive a direct link for the event. In this virtual panel, enjoy stories from Indigenous creatives from Pasifika and beyond about how they center their cultural upbringing to create community-specific and place-based media, as well as the movement to grow, strengthen, and support new and existing media connections across the global Indigenous community. Panelists will include multi-disciplinary artist and researcher Dakota Alcantara-Camacho (Matao / Chamorro / Ilokano), filmmaker and poet Chad Charlie (Ahousaht First Nation / Black), filmmaker Erin Lau (Kanaka Maoli), speaker and coach Alyssa London (Tlingit), and journalist Thomas Mangloña II (Chamorro). Moderated by Tracy Rector (Choctaw/Jewish/Black), Managing Director, Storytelling, Nia Tero. This panel is part of a series of events produced by Nia Tero, a global non-profit supporting indigenous land sovereignty, and the forthcoming Kin Theory Indigenous media makers database.
  • LAN YU (4K RESTORATION) hero image
    Hong Kong SAR China
    LAN YU (4K RESTORATION)
    Spotlight on Hong Kong
    anemptytextlline
    It's 1988 in Beijing, and domineering businessman Chen Handong (Hu Jun) lives a life of expensive taste thanks to his company's success. But when he meets a young architecture student from the countryside, Lan Yu (Liu Ye), the two men become first sexually, then romantically involved. Based off Bei Tong's novel Beijing Comrades, widely hailed as a milestone in queer Chinese literature, LAN YU is a wisful chronicle of Chen Handong and Lan Yu's relationship through a decade of immense political and economic upheaval in China. Provocative references to the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests and the financial crisis of 1997 anchor the film's passionate melodrama to the stark reality of the world around its lovers. As age and class become major fault lines in Chinese society, Handong and Lan Yu also reach several breaking points in their relationship. Handong tries to win over Lan Yu with his wealth, while Lan Yu rebukes his attempts to buy his love. But their lives constantly bring them back into contact, leaving them wondering what social barriers love can really transcend, and why-despite everything against them-they still love each other anyway. -Emerson Goo   HIFF is thrilled to honor director Stanley Kwan as this year's Spotlight on Hong Kong Filmmaker in Focus. The Festival will be presenting a special LIVE virtual discussion with Stanley on TUESDAY NOVEMBER 9TH at 5PM HST. Viewers will be able to participate in this event via the HIFF Facebook Page, HIFF Youtube Channel, and at HIFF.ORG.
  • hero image
    United States
    LAST HAWAIIAN SUGAR
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    12-year-old Nua navigates the changing world using her connection to the land as Maui's lone remaining 'Big Sugar' plantation shuts down and threatens her very way of life. A byproduct of migrant workers brought together decades ago, she struggles to reveal a deep secret to her mother on the final day of the mill's operation.
  • hero image
    United States
    LAST NIGHT
    ACM UHM Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    A blossoming of romance in one night.
  • Japan
    LAST OF THE WOLVES
    Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    An homage to the 80s and 90s golden age of yakuza films, LAST OF THE WOLVES joins the ranks as a classic cop-versus-gangster flick, but with a fresh take on the glorification of gang leaders. The sequel to BLOOD OF THE WOLVES is set three years after the initial film and Hioka Shuichi, a maverick detective, has been implementing his slain partner's plan to finally end the gang wars between the Odani and Itako factions and prevent further bloodshed in the community. But Shuichi soon learns that his desire to maintain peace cannot withstand. After a sinister criminal named Uebayashi Shigehiro, a former member of the Itako gang, is released from prison, Shuichi's work begins to unravel. Shigehiro is out for revenge, attempting to avenge his now-dead boss' death, and willing to go to any extreme to end Shuichi's bid for peace and achieve his goals. But when Shuichi forces a Korean immigrant to infiltrate Shigehiro's gang, all hell breaks loose. LAST OF THE WOLVES is an epic crime-thriller, underscoring that peace comes with a price. -Kanani Lyons
  • United States
    LEEWARD DRIVE-INN
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    A short documentary on Leeward Drive Inn located in Waipahu, Hawai‘i.
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    United States
    LIFE BELOW WATER
    Green Screen Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Life Below Water provides a bleak glimpse into the current state of our oceans where pollution increases at an alarming rate. In this engrossing, charming, and, at times, unsettling nature documentary, Academy Award winner Morgan Freeman introduces us to a new species swirling in the depths of the ocean: plastics. Life Below Water details a somber underwater world of plastics and a future of irrevocable marine life damage if we don't take action now.
  • LIMBO
    China,Hong Kong SAR China
    LIMBO
    Spotlight on China, Spotlight on Hong Kong
    anemptytextlline
    From director Soi Cheang, comes the biggest Hong Kong Chinese action crime thriller of the year. A serial killer is on the loose. Under public pressure to solve the case, the police reinstate veteran detective Cham (Gordon Lam Ka Tung) on active duty and assign him to the case with rookie cop Will (Mason Lee). However, Cham's past returns to haunt him when he encounters To (Cya Liu), the girl who killed his wife and child in a car accident. To redeem herself, To volunteers to work undercover for Cham on the case. However, Cham can't control his hatred for the person who destroyed his life. As the idealistic Will and the emotionally unstable Cham clash over their vastly different investigation styles and Cham's abusive attitude towards To, the truth becomes increasingly blurred... Shot in stunning black & white with gorgeous cinematography from Cheng Siu-Keung (Johnnie To's longtime director of photography), LIMBO immerses the viewer in a near future city on the edge. Soi Cheang crafts a metropolis that is vast and dense, teeming with a dark underbelly that threatens to overtake the urban sprawl. A must-see on the big screen, the Festival is proud to present this film at HIFF41.
  • LISTEN BEFORE YOU SING hero image
    Taiwan ROC
    LISTEN BEFORE YOU SING
    Spotlight on Taiwan
    anemptytextlline
    Budget cuts and a small student body cause Jiu Pu Elementary to be threatened with closure. In an attempt to prove their value as an institution and keep their doors open, the school enters a choir competition with the hopes of winning. The school tends to children from the Bunun tribe, an indigenous group from Taiwan that is known for their musical ability. Despite being musically challenged, Mr. Fang, along with Ms. Huang, the newly hired substitute, take on the challenge of teaching the children to sing. While attending choir practices, the school children struggle with their own responsibilities at home, as many play crucial roles in attending to and earning money for their families. As the competition nears closer, the children begin to enjoy singing and excitement builds around their performance. By coming back to their traditional roots with the help of tribe elders, will the children find their own voices? -Kanani Sato
  • hero image
    United States
    LITTLE FISH
    Eat. Drink. Film. Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    A pioneer of sustainable cooking decides to close his popular restaurant and pursue a new recipe for life.
  • LONG DAY
    South Korea
    LONG DAY
    Spotlight on Korea
    anemptytextlline
    Over the course of a single day in four vignettes, a group of interconnected artists, novelists, and filmmakers have a series of interactions, some planned, some by chance. In a Hong Sangsoo-esque fashion, the protagonists in this conversational film muse over love, life, longing and art. When a novelist moves into his new house, he is bombarded by a strange woman who claims she used to live there. A budding filmmaker scouts a location she wants to shoot with her boyfriend, but arguments get in the way. Two people who lost their spouses in the same car accident connect and deliberate whether the deceased were having an affair. And a writer visits an old friend, hoping to receive permission to turn her story into a film. With humor and drama, this lyrical film from director Cho Sung-kyu explores our human desire to create meaning in our lives, even where there's none to be found. -Anna Page
  • LOVE AND FURY hero image
    United States
    LOVE AND FURY WITH STERLIN HARJO
    Documentary Panorama, HIFF Talks, Indigenous Lens
    anemptytextlline
    The NOVEMBER 11th theater screening of this film will be followed by an extended discussion with HIFF41 Honoree, director Sterlin Harjo. Discussion will be IN-THEATERS only. Films made from the outside that celebrate art made by modern Indigenous peoples, have a tendency to see the artists' works through the oppressive prism of settler colonialism for more than 400 years. To break free of this mold, director Sterlin Harjo (this year's HIFF41 Maverick Award and also co-creator of the hit series RESERVATION DOGS with Taika Waititi) made LOVE AND FURY to provide an insider's look at the sweeping variety and energy of Indigenous art, including graffiti painting, poetry, prose, comedy, and, especially, music. Rather than categorize the artists by nation or tribe, the documentary moves quickly from artist to artist, mixing genres that run the gamut-from jazz singing to folk ballads to grinding metal bands to profane discussions about the use of farts in performance art. Harjo, himself Seminole and Muscogee (Creek), takes his camera along to follow Native artists across the United States, and even to some European countries, to show how far-ranging this constantly evolving field of art is being appreciated. For each of the two-dozen artists profiled in LOVE AND FURY, Harjo emphasizes the humanity reflecting the cultures from which they came but does not define them by their past. As Harjo describes in this funny, absorbing doc, filmed over the course of a full year, "We are diverse, we are dark, we are beautiful, and so is our artwork."
  • MAD GOD hero image
    United States
    MAD GOD
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    MAD GOD is a jaw-dropping animated journey into madness, birthed by FX titan Phil Tippett. Even if you are unfamiliar with his name, you know his work - He was instrumental in the designs used in THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and THE RETURN OF THE JEDI; he created the designs of Jabba the Hutt and the AT-ATs in the Hoth battle; he brought to life the JURASSIC PARK dinosaurs, the DRAGONSLAYER creatures, the bugs in STARSHIP TROOPERS, and the ED-209 robot sequences in ROBOCOP, just to name a few. MAD GOD was initially a lark project - a short film that he would fabricate in his garage in-between his big budget Hollywood gigs. Who knew that this outstanding stop-motion piece of cinematic insanity would take 30 years to make! Defying description, MAD GOD opens with a steampunk explorer as it navigates a series of horror-filled worlds populated by deranged mad scientists, gruesome experiments, masturbatory dolls, and amorphous creatures made of flesh and machinery. An insane collage of styles, tones, inspirations, and unique ideas brought to life with meticulous detail, MAD GOD is a stream of consciousness manifesto swimming with Tippet's uncompromising psycho-analytical perspectives on humanity and its downfall. He has embraced them more in his advanced age, fortified by his decades long career working in Hollywood, which he wholeheartedly rejects. Even if you are not on board with MAD GOD's eccentric storytelling, there's always something to admire. It is a beautifully deranged artistic achievement with an uncompromising vision. In the end, Tippett is the "mad god," a creator and destroyer of worlds with a limitless imagination and some of the best handmade animation you will ever see. -Anderson Le
  • Made In Hawaii Shorts Program 1
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    PLAYS WITH: ALA MOANA BOYS DIRECTOR: Keli'i Grace KA HO'I - THE RETURN DIRECTOR: Mitchel Viernes RIVER OF SMALL GODS DIRECTOR: Bradley Tangonan I WILL BE YOUR BREATH DIRECTOR: Malia  Adams LAST HAWAIIAN SUGAR DIRECTOR: Déjà Cresencia Bernhardt  
  • Made In Hawaii Shorts Program 2
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Plays with: AREA 77 (In Theaters: Hilo, Kaua‘i Only & Online) DIRECTOR: Vegard Bye CASHBACK (In Theaters: O‘ahu, Hilo, Kaua‘i & Online) DIRECTOR: Zoë Eisenberg BALLISTIC (In Theaters: O‘ahu, Hilo, Kaua‘i & Online) DIRECTOR: Zack Harris BLUE COOLER (In Theaters with REEL WĀHINE OF HAWAI‘I & Online | also plays with Keiki Shorts) DIRECTOR: Laura Margulies BR0K3N (In Theaters: O‘ahu, Hilo, Kaua‘i & Online) DIRECTOR: Kurt Jones ESCAPE VELOCITY (In Theaters: O‘ahu Only & Online) DIRECTOR: Samuel Davenport GONE CAMPING (In Theaters: O‘ahu Only & Online) DIRECTOR: Emily Kim IN THE LIGHT (In Theaters: Hilo, Kaua‘i Only & Online) DIRECTOR: Kailer Scopacasa MIA, MARGUERITE & MARGE (In Theaters with JOCKEY & Online) DIRECTOR: Marissa Dimitrion OUR WALKS IN HAWAI‘I (In Theaters with REEL WĀHINE OF HAWAI‘I & Online) DIRECTOR: Lee-Won Fulbright TROUBLE IN PARADISE (In Theaters: O‘ahu, Hilo, Kaua‘i & Online) DIRECTOR: Mike Bayman WHEN YOU STOP RUNNING (In Theaters: O‘ahu Only & Online) DIRECTOR: Krysta Lei
  • Made In Hawaii Shorts Program 3
    Made in Hawai‘i Shorts, Maui Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    PLAYS WITH: FISHPOND: LOKO I'A DIRECTOR: Leah  Warshawski HONOLULU'S NAUGHTIEST NIGHTCLUB OWNER DIRECTOR: Rick Quan NO MAN IS AN ISLAND DIRECTOR: Liz Barney OUR MAKAWAO DIRECTOR: Robert Stone, Matt Yamashita I AM A PLASTIC DIRECTOR: Richard Hamasaki
  • hero image
    United States
    MAHÅLANG
    Indigenous Lens, Pacific Showcase, Pacific Showcase Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Chamorro Filipino choreographer and dancer Caili Quan pays tribute to the family and culture on Guam that inspired her love of dancing. Set over contemporary dances, Caili explores her own heritage through memories and conversations with her family. Each dance is inspired by a facet of Guam's culture: oral storytelling, matrilineal roots, the warrior spirit, and the deep importance of family. Through every story and gesture there is a common thread of mahålang, a Chamorro word that encompasses longing. Weaving a narrative of how collective memory and storytelling preserve where we come from, "Mahålang" is a love letter to Guam.
  • United States
    MĀLAMALAMA - LIGHT OF KNOWLEDGE
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This film follows a young Native Hawaiian woman as she shares common struggles related to reproductive justice, as well as her personal experiences. She reflects on the isolation she felt, as well as the hope that came when she realized that there were people and organizations available to help her. She also encourages the audiences to take advantage of those resources and come together to build a society that is more conscious and just regarding reproductive rights.
  • United States
    MALASADA COUPLE
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    A couple who makes malasadas in central Maui and the importance of keeping the old traditions while making them.
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    United States
    MALIHINI
    Indigenous Lens, Pacific Showcase, Pacific Showcase Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    An introspective look into Hawaiian identity and living on the mainland, filmmaker Ha'aheo Auwae-Dekker uses a candid conversation with their mother to dissect and deconstruct where they come from and how their family has lived in diaspora.
  • MANZANAR
    United States
    MANZANAR, DIVERTED: WHEN WATER BECOMES DUST
    Green Screen, Indigenous Lens
    anemptytextlline
    Many have heard of Manzanar, California as a space where Japanese Americans were incarcerated during World War II. As we visit the town today, Manzanar continues to be home to indigenous communities who have serious concerns about the water on their land. Ann Kaneko's poetic documentary explores the erased history of Manzanar, before the U.S. government claimed it for incarceration camps, and depleted its natural resources to feed the growing megalopolis of Los Angeles hundreds of miles north. Beginning in Payahuunadü ("the land of flowing water"), also known as Owens Valley, Kaneko lights the colonial legacy of injustice shared at the site of Manzanar. This documentary is a contentious memorial to the internment of Japanese Americans and the little known grounds where indigenous communities have fought for their rights to the lands and water that sustain them. Poetically weaving memories of Native Americans, Japanese American WWII incarcerees, and environmentalists, the film unites an intergenerational community of women, fighting for their land and their rights. -Anderson Le
  • United States
    MARVELOUS AND THE BLACK HOLE
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Sammy (newcomer Miya Cech in a heartfelt performance) is struggling to cope with the loss of her mother and gets constantly called into the principal's office, much to the chagrin of her also struggling father (Leonardo Nam). Fed up with her wild behavior, he enrolls her in a summer course-if she fails, she'll be sent to a boot camp for juvenile delinquents. After storming out of her first class, Sammy meets Margot, a surly magician, played by Rhea Perlman (TV's "Cheers"). Margot forces Sammy to be her assistant for a performance, and although Sammy seems uninterested, she seeks Margot out after the show and asks to become Margot's pupil. Margot agrees, and as their unlikely friendship grows, we learn that she and Sammy understand each other more than they expected. Director Kate Tsang, in her directorial feature debut, delivers a wry yet touching coming-of-age story punctuated by moments of whimsy and magic, as this unlikely odd couple learn from one another, navigating grief, trauma, and finding hope in the darkest moments. -Anderson Le
  • United States
    MEANWHILE, IN PARADISE
    anemptytextlline
    An elderly Japanese American man reflects upon his childhood during wartime Hawai’i in this film about anti-Asian prejudice and human connection.
  • MEMORIA hero image
    Colombia,France,Germany,Mexico,Thailand,United Kingdom
    MEMORIA
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Shooting outside of Thailand - in faraway Colombia - for the first time in his career, Apichatpong Weerasethakul makes his English- and Spanish-language debut with Memoria, co-winner of the Jury Prize at this year's Cannes Film Festival. His latest masterpiece is mysterious and unique, even by the director's standards, with an international cast of renowned actors including Tilda Swinton, Jeanne Balibar, and popular Colombian TV star Elkin Diaz. Spanning an atemporal, apolitical space of the narrative, Memoria centres on Jessica (Swinton), a Scottish orchid farmer visiting her sister in Bogotá. One livid morning at daybreak, Jessica is torn from sleep by a loud bang resembling the reverberating sound of a large stone ball falling on metal. This haunting sound dispels her sleep for days, calling her identity into question and guiding her from recording studios to secluded villages. The noise, which only Jessica seems to hear, carries a foreboding beauty that is part of the surrounding landscape - be it the busy streets of Bogotá or the verdant mountains around the excavation site where Jessica travels to meet up with a new friend, Agnes (Balibar), an archaeologist researching human remains that bear the signs of ritual deaths. Here, Jessica also shares memories with Hernan (Diaz), a fish scaler who speaks of the past, the future, and the memories of the dead. Character-driven, unlike Weerasethakul's previous films, Memoria challenges and enriches the director's way of making movies. Weerasethakul weaves his signature serene narrative style into a carefully designed land- and soundscape that captures the elusive genius of the locus with precise, perfect simplicity. -TIFF
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    United States
    MESSAGES
    ACM UHM Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    We meet Tai, and the animated form of his intrusive thoughts, The Rage Virus. We see his club that failed to take off as he is harassed for it and we witness one of his violent fantasies as he kills another student. Snapping out of it, he tries to get away from his thoughts until the rage is too much.The virus explodes from Tai and another violent fantasy ensues. Scared of himself, he runs to the bathroom in a panic when the virus gives him a chance to kill himself. But right as he is about to act, another student interrupts his thoughts. The phones on their heads fade away and we hear them talk to one another for the first time.
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    United States
    METRO6
    Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    Today is an important day for Zak, but everything is going horribly wrong. During his adventurous bus ride, Zak goes through a deeply personal metamorphosis. Below the comedic surface lies a warning for all of us to not lose the importance of human connections. As Zak becomes more socially aware and appreciative of his diverse community, so do we.
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    United States
    MIA, MARGUERITE, AND MARGE
    Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    "No matter where I go, I'm wrong, so to me, I'm always right," is Mia Kabe's modus operandi. Coming off the heels of an abusive marriage and working at a drive-thru window to make ends meet, Mia earnestly carves out space in her life for her true passions of striptease, dance instructing, and intimacy coaching. Mia, Marguerite, and Marge is an intimate vignette of a healing woman that uncovers how trauma and empowerment can coexist in unexpected ways.
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    New Zealand
    MILK
    Keiki Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    In a small town square a young girl counts her savings. Happy with her sum, she skips to the country store where candy is arrayed in enticing glass jars. After careful consideration she selects a giant, coloured lollipop, then joins the queue behind an old man buying bread and milk. Her glee however, is stemmed when she witnesses the old man unable to afford his purchases. Too proud to accept the charitable shopkeeper's offer to pay later, he finds enough coins to pay for just the bread. Leaving the milk on the counter, he shuffles to the door. As the young girl watches him leave, she contemplates her next move.
  • MIRACLE CITY KOZA hero image
    Japan
    MIRACLE CITY KOZA
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    In 1970s Koza, Okinawa during the American occupation, American GIs streamed into town en route to Vietnam, and live music clubs raked in enough nightly cash to build a house. Koza brimmed with money, riots, and rock n' roll music. 50 years later, the excitement is long gone, and plans to develop the area into a modern, sterile shopping district are underway. Shota, the grandson of legendary rocker Haru, has been spending his days in idleness dreaming of music fame, when his grandfather is suddenly killed in a traffic accident. Shortly thereafter, Haru's ghost appears to Shota with an otherworldly proposition: trade bodies so grandpa can take care of unfinished business, just for a little while! But before he can even respond, Shota finds himself transported to the 1970s, his spirit transmuted to the then young and rocking Haru. The problem is Shota doesn't know how to play rock n' roll or have any of his grandfather's confidence or charisma. The longer he stays in this body, the more trouble it spells for Haru and his band... From director Kazuhiro Taira, this body-swap time travelling comedy is hugely entertaining from beginning to end. Yet underneath the glossy rock n' roll veneer, Taira deftly examines the legacy of the US occupation of Okinawa, the good, the bad, and the ugly. -Anna Page
  • MISSION: JOY hero image
    United States
    MISSION: JOY
    Documentary Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Directed by Academy Award-winning director Louie Psihoyos, MISSION: JOY reflects on the lives of two beloved spiritual leaders: the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. In their own words, they generously share the tales of their childhood, the genesis of their happiness, and the activism that was the result of it. In this endearing documentary of two elusive but widely-known figures, happiness is explored with a microscope, honing in on tragedy, forgiveness, and compassion as complementary themes. With archival footage and stirring animation, the story of Desmond Tutu's struggle opposing apartheid, the Dalai Lama's transformation from farm-boy to icon, and their close friendship is in full-view as these men display two of the biggest smiles on screen. While self-proclaimed brothers, they exchange laughs, memories, and philosophies. But their stories are contrasted by different forms of tragedies, and they both encourage the same message of redirecting anger into forgiveness, imbuing compassion into raging crowds, and finding purpose in personal tragedy. At times hilariously inspiring and also sorrowful, this interview-style documentary seeks to inspire compassion as a means to achieving happiness, just as Desmond Tutu and the Dalai Lama attest with their friendship, past, and never-ending smiling faces. -Kanani Lyons
  • United States
    MODERN POLAXIS
    HIFF XR Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This AR experience will be FREE to the public and will be available in-person at the Entrepreneurs Sandbox NOV 20 & 21 from 12:00PM – 6:00PM. Modern Polaxis is a paranoid time traveller that writes about all his strange experiences in his private journal, which he hides away in a layer of augmented reality (AR). This experience is accessible through the app, book, and posters. Polaxis believes the world we live in is a holographic projection from another plane in the universe. This projection is known as Intafrag and is patrolled by Intafrag agents. The agents monitor glitches and pursue time traveling fugitives. Polaxis believes he is one of these fugitives. But, he can't quite prove any of this because he was pretty wasted the last time he time travelled. Polaxis must hurry, for IF the fabric of our reality is merely a flickering light, what happens when someone flicks the switch off?
  • Myanmar
    MONEY HAS FOUR LEGS
    Southeast Asian Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Wai Bhone, a young film director living in the shadow of his accomplished father, struggles to balance his life as an artist with the real struggles of everyday life in Myanmar. State censors are breathing down his neck to change the story, his producer wants the ending recut as a romantic comedy, and his deadbeat brother-in-law - fanaticizing about his past life as a movie extra - wants to relive past glories as an action star. Things go from bad to worse when an expensive movie camera is damaged on-set and he has to find a way to cover the costs-by any means necessary. MONEY HAS FOUR LEGS is a sardonic satire of life in modern Myanmar, one of the poorest countries in the world and one of the hardest hit by COVID-19. Shot before the February 2021 military coup d'état that deposed democratically-elected leader Aung San Suu Kyi, crippled the country's economy and left millions of people on the verge of starvation, MONEY HAS FOUR LEGS was shot under strict censorship conditions and can be seen as a veiled allegory for life under military rule. Since the film's release, its writer and producer Ma Aeint has been arrested by the military, making its story even more pressing for the world to see. Marginalised in almost every sense of the word, Burmese filmmakers are rarely given the opportunity to tell their own story. MONEY HAS FOUR LEGS is a rare glimpse into modern life under military rule encasing a universal story of an artist struggling against all odds to communicate his vision. -Duncan Caillard
  • MONEYBOYS hero image
    Austria,Belgium,France,Taiwan ROC
    MONEYBOYS
    Asian Cinerama, Kau Ka Hōkū Award Nominee, Spotlight on Taiwan
    anemptytextlline
    Fei (Kai Ko from YOU ARE THE APPLE OF MY EYE) works illegally as a gay hustler in order to support his family, yet when he realizes they are willing to accept his money but not his way of life, there is a major breakdown in their relations. Through his relationship to the headstrong Long, Fei seems able to find a new lease on life, but then he encounters Xiaolai, the love of his youth, who confronts him with the guilt of his repressed past. The directorial feature film debut of C.B. Yi (a graduate of the Vienna Film Academy, where he received tutelage from auteur Michael Haneke), MONEYBOYS is elegantly framed and an affectingly played drama that had its world premiere in this year's Cannes in Un Certain Regard. Although the story is set in Southern China, the film was actually shot entirely in Taiwan with support from the Taipei Film Commission after the project's original PRC funding was cut short most likely from its ostensible subject matter. -Anderson Le HIFF is proud to nominate this film for the 2021 Kau Ka Hōkū Award.
  • United States
    MONOTONY
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Filmed over the course of six months and exclusively on a hand-me-down Samsung S6 Active, get a glimpse into someone else's life and how everything is the same--both the comfort and torture of it.
  • United States
    NAMOO
    HIFF XR Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    * Due to technical difficulties, this piece is unavailable for in-person VR sessions. We appreciate your understanding. Written and directed by Oscar®-nominated filmmaker Erick Oh (OPERA) and produced by nine-time Emmy® Award-winning Baobab Studios, NAMOO is a hand-crafted, narrative poem come to life. Inspired by the passing of Erick’s grandfather, NAMOO—which translates to “tree” in Korean—marks Oh’s most personal work to date. The film follows the beautiful and heartbreaking moments of a man’s life, from beginning to end.  With a tree as a metaphor for a man's life, you’ll experience his story through objects from times he'd rather soon forget. The film is a deeply personal yet surprisingly universal piece that will resonate with each viewer. Baobab Studios presents Namoo, Executive Producer John Cho, Produced by Larry Cutler, Eric Darnell, Maureen Fan and Kane Lee, Written and Directed by Erick Oh, Development Producer Shannon Ryan, Production Manager Anika Nagpal, Art Director Eusong Lee, Lead Quill Artists Dan Franke and Nick Ladd, Editor Vanessa Rojas, Music by Zach Johnston and Matteo Roberts.
  • NEMESIS hero image
    United States
    NEMESIS
    Filmmaker In Focus: Albert Pyun
    anemptytextlline
    Cybernetically enhanced LAPD cop Alex Rain hunts android terrorists. After a run-in with some heavily armed enemies he starts to question his job as a killing machine, and leaves his profession. But his past catches up with him, and he soon becomes entangled in a violent conflict between cyborgs, androids and humans. Continuing in Albert Pyun's cyberpunk oeuvre that was kickstarted with CYBORG (starring an unknown Jean Claude Van Damme), NEMESIS is arguably his best film. The resourceful director, who was used to working with literally nothing, had an actual decent budget, some well-staged and choreographed action sequences, and a well paced plot. It was his ode to William Gibson's NEUROMANCER, the seminal speculative fiction novel that coined the term "cyberpunk." Granted, NEMESIS is by no means original. Pyun borrowed from other cyborg movies, from THE TERMINATOR, BLADERUNNER and ROBOCOP. And the aforementioned well paced plot was still razor thin, story-wise, but that was made up of lots of explosions, as well as the occasional bon mot of intellectual and philosophical one-liners about humanity and what it means to be corporeal thrown into the mix. Plus, it seems everyone in this post-apocalyptic future wears sunglasses and trench coats, years before Neo and Trinity donned similar threads in THE MATRIX movies. Ultimately, NEMESIS is a wild ride, led by martial artist turned actor Olivier Gruner, who is flanked with a lot of bad-ass female characters, borrowing from the James Cameron playbook of Ripleys and Sarah Connors. -Anderson Le
  • NEW AMERICAN PERSPECTIVES IN FILMMAKING
    HIFF Talks, New American Perspectives
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to view the entire panel discussion. The New American Perspectives program shines a spotlight on foreign-born filmmakers, celebrating the extraordinary contributions of immigrant artists to contemporary cinema and media in the United States. As part of the New American Perspectives program at #HIFF41, the Vilcek Foundation and HIFF present a panel discussion with featured filmmakers: Aizzah Fatima, Kier-La Janisse, Shih-Ching Tsou, Roshan Sethi, Karan Soni, and Geraldine Viswanathan. The panel will explore issues of identity, experience, and representation in filmmaking, and the value of authenticity and creative risk-taking. The creative spirit and innovation of foreign-born artists have made an indelible impact on filmmaking in the United States-expanding the boundaries of filmmaking as an art form and inspiring the next generation of artists and leaders. 2021 New American Perspectives Panelists Aizzah Fatima Aizzah Fatima is an award-winning writer, actor, comedian, producer, and ex-Google engineer. Her feature film AMERICANISH world premiered at CAAMFest and won the audience award. Her TV pilot MUSLIM GIRLS DTF: DISCUSS THEIR FAITH is the winner of the 2020 Roddenberry Foundation Impact Award, 2020 Yes, And...Laughter Lab, and an ISF Film award. She is a 2021 Orchard Project Episodic Lab fellow. Her solo play Dirty Paki Lingerie has been produced in NYC, Toronto, Italy, Turkmenistan, Pakistan, Edinburgh Fringe Festival, United Kingdom (15 city tour), and universities across the U.S. She received her MFA in Writing for Film & TV from Emerson College. Kier-La Janisse Kier-La Janisse is a film writer, programmer, publisher, producer and founder of The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies. She is the author of A Violent Professional: The Films of Luciano Rossi (2007) and House of Psychotic Women: An Autobiographical Topography of Female Neurosis in Horror and Exploitation Films (2012) and has been an editor on several books. She was a producer on Mike Malloy's EUROCRIME: THE ITALIAN COP AND GANGSTER FILMS THAT RULED THE '70S (2012), Sean Hogan's WE ALWAYS FIND OURSELVES IN THE SEA (2017), Mike McKinlay's TIGHTS WORSHIP: THE PROCESSES OF THE RITA (2019) and David Gregory's TALES OF THE UNCANNY (2020). A house editor and producer of bonus features at Severin Films, WOODLANDS DARK AND DAYS BEWITCHED is her first film as director. Shih-Ching Tsou Taiwanese born Shih-Ching Tsou is a New York City-based film producer, director, writer, and multiple Independent Spirit Award, Gotham Independent Film Award nominee. She co-wrote, co-directed and co-produced TAKE OUT with Sean Baker. After their first collaboration, Tsou worked on Baker's STARLET as executive producer and the costume designer. She served as producer, costume designer and art director of Baker's next film - TANGERINE as well as making her acting debut on the big screen. Tsou produced Baker's THE FLORIDA PROJECT which was released theatrically by A24. Most recently, Tsou produced Baker's upcoming feature RED ROCKET, which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival 2021. Roshan Sethi Roshan Sethi, born and raised in Canada, is a screenwriter, producer and physician working at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. He began writing as a student at Harvard Medical School and co-created Fox's THE RESIDENT while finishing his residency. He co-wrote (with Hayley Schore) a film titled CALL JANE with Elizabeth Banks and Sigourney Weaver. 7 DAYS is his directorial debut. Karan Soni Karan Soni was born and raised in New Delhi, India. He grew up studying theater and continued his education at the University of Southern California. While in school he landed a lead role in SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED. Since that film, he has starred in several other feature films including the DEADPOOL movies, Paul Feig's GHOSTBUSTERS, OFFICE CHRISTMAS PARTY, TROLLS WORLD TOUR, ALWAYS BE MY MAYBE and DETECTIVE PIKACHU amongst others. On television he has appeared as a series regular on shows like BETAS, OTHER SPACE and BLUNT TALK and more. He currently stars in the series MIRACLE WORKERS opposite Daniel Radcliffe and Steve Buscemi. Soni also recently directed his first episode of television for the HBO series ROOM 104. Karan co-wrote, starred and executive produced the feature film 7 DAYS. Geraldine Viswanathan Australian actress Geraldine Viswanathan has quickly succeeded in establishing her career in television and film. Viswanathan can currently be seen in the romantic comedy THE BROKEN HEART GALLERY, as well as the HBO film, BAD EDUCATION. Viswanathan also reprises her role alongside Daniel Radcliffe and Steve Buscemi in the upcoming third season of the TBS anthology comedy series, MIRACLE WORKERS. In recent years, Viswanathan starred in the coming-of-age drama HALA, the Netflix original comedy THE PACKAGE, and the Universal comedy BLOCKERS. Viswanathan stars in the feature 7 DAYS opposite her MIRACLE WORKERS co-star Karan Soni, who co-wrote the film with Roshan Sethi. About the Vilcek Foundation The Vilcek Foundation raises awareness of immigrant contributions in the United States and fosters appreciation of the arts and sciences. We accomplish our mission through our prizes program and through partnerships like the New American Perspectives program at HIFF.  The innovation and perspective of foreign-born artists have made an indelible impact on filmmaking in the United States—expanding the boundaries of the medium as an art form and inspiring the next generation of artists and storytellers. To learn more, please visit vilcek.org.
  • NEW AMERICAN PERSPECTIVES MASTER CLASS: 7 DAYS
    HIFF Talks, New American Perspectives
    anemptytextlline
    This live event has passed. CLICK HERE to watch the entire conversation. In partnership with the Vilcek Foundation, HIFF is honored to present a special Master Class with the team behind the film 7 DAYS on SATURDAY NOVEMBER 13TH as part of the 2021 New American Perspectives program. The discussion will be moderated by HIFF Artistic Director Anderson Le and will feature, director and co-writer Roshan Sethi, co-writer and lead actor Karan Soni, and lead actress Geraldine Viswanathan. This event will be presented LIVE online. Go to HIFF.ORG, the HIFF Facebook Page, or HIFF's Youtube Channel to participate in the conversation. Panelists: Roshan Sethi Roshan Sethi, born and raised in Canada, is a director, screenwriter, producer and physician working at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. He began writing as a student at Harvard Medical School and co-created Fox's THE RESIDENT while finishing his residency. He co-wrote (with Hayley Schore) a film titled CALL JANE with Elizabeth Banks and Sigourney Weaver. 7 DAYS is his directorial debut.  Karan Soni Karan Soni was born and raised in New Delhi, India. He grew up studying theater and continued his education at the University of Southern California. While in school he landed a lead role in SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED. Since that film, he has starred in several other feature films including the DEADPOOL movies, Paul Feig's GHOSTBUSTERS, ALWAYS BE MY MAYBE and DETECTIVE PIKACHU amongst others. On television he has appeared as a series regular on shows like BETAS, OTHER SPACE and BLUNT TALK and more. He currently stars in the series MIRACLE WORKERS opposite Daniel Radcliffe and Steve Buscemi. Soni also recently directed his first episode of television for the HBO series ROOM 104. Karan co-wrote, starred and executive produced the feature film 7 DAYS. Geraldine Viswanathan Australian actress Geraldine Viswanathan has quickly succeeded in establishing her career in television and film. Viswanathan can currently be seen in the romantic comedy THE BROKEN HEART GALLERY, as well as the HBO film, BAD EDUCATION. Viswanathan also reprises her role alongside Daniel Radcliffe and Steve Buscemi in the upcoming third season of the TBS anthology comedy series, MIRACLE WORKERS. In recent years, Viswanathan starred in the coming-of-age drama HALA, the Netflix original comedy THE PACKAGE, and the Universal comedy BLOCKERS. Viswanathan stars in the feature 7 DAYS opposite her MIRACLE WORKERS co-star Karan Soni, who co-wrote the film with Roshan Sethi. About the Vilcek Foundation The Vilcek Foundation raises awareness of immigrant contributions in the United States and fosters appreciation of the arts and sciences. We accomplish our mission through our prizes program and through partnerships like the New American Perspectives program at HIFF.  The innovation and perspective of foreign-born artists have made an indelible impact on filmmaking in the United States—expanding the boundaries of the medium as an art form and inspiring the next generation of artists and storytellers. To learn more, please visit vilcek.org.
  • NIGHT RAIDERS hero image
    Canada,New Zealand
    NIGHT RAIDERS
    Film For Thought, Indigenous Lens, Kau Ka Hōkū Award Nominee
    anemptytextlline
    It's the year 2043. Political factions had come to a head after a war broke apart North America. In that process, Canada joined the United States, caving to the argument that the alliance was necessary for survival of the Government (previously, known as the U.S. government), but it resulted in a civil war of rebellion which lead to a wall being built between the two countries. Everyone loyal to the far-right faction is moved to one side of the wall, and everyone else to the other side. Canada is now the land of the disenfranchised and impoverished. But then, as now, Canada is a land of natural resources, and the Government realizes it wants those assets. It is into this world that we first meet Niska and her daughter, Waseese. They are on the run. At the age of 5, children become property of the state in this post-Civil War world, and Waseese is 11-years-old. In their efforts to hide from the authorities, they're forced into the city that is cut in half by the wall, Weyakwin City in the north, Emerson State to the south, where Niska is forced to give her up. Left on her own, Niska crosses paths with the Night Raiders, an underground group of Cree vigilantes. Their goal is to break into the Academies where the children are being kept and steal the kids back one by one. Through the Night Raiders, Niska realizes she may have made a horrible mistake, and she must align herself with them if she has any hope of getting Waseese back. The directorial feature debut of Danis Goulet, who is Cree-Métis, NIGHT RAIDERS is a female-driven sci-fi drama about resilience, courage and love. The film is a Canada/New Zealand co-production and executive produced by Oscar® winner and HIFF favorite Taika Waititi. -Anderson Le This film is presented as part of the Film For Thought program in partnership with the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities. CLICK HERE to watch an extended discussion with director Danis Goulet, moderated by scholar Bryan Kamaoli Kuwada from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.  CLICK HERE to read a companion essay written by scholar Bryan Kamaoli Kuwada.
  • NINJA GIRL hero image
    Japan
    NINJA GIRL
    Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    Miu (Saki Fukuda) works as a city servant who cares for her dying grandfather (Shohei Uno), a prominent opposer to the Immigrant Elimination Ordinance. A family friend named Koji (Arata Iura) commits suicide after admitting his role in concocting fraudulence to help push the act through. Miu takes it upon herself to make things right after her grandpa informs her that she is actually the last survivor in a long lineage ... of ninjas. Miu begins as potentially the worst ninja in history, but her convictions against injustice propel through her initial clumsiness to restore justice within her community. Directed by Yu Irie, NINJA GIRL goes beyond the stereotypes of ninja culture and cinema and offers a satirical take with strong, socially-relevant themes to current events in Japan. Shot in a rare 4:3 aspect ratio with minimal camera movements and static shots, NINJA GIRL prioritizes substance over spectacle and slowly builds to a satisfying conclusion with an overall tone that focuses more on its character-driven story and off-beat humor. -Lee Ngo
  • hero image
    Argentina,United States
    NINUFABUSHI MIIATI (GUIDED BY THE NORTH STAR)
    Hilo Showcase, Kaua‘i Showcase, Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    Told through watercolor illustrations and a traditional Okinawan folk song, "Ninufabushi Miiati" follows an emigrant's journey from Okinawa to Argentina in the early 1900s. This project was an international collaboration by four descendants of Uchinaanchu (Okinawan) immigrants in Argentina and the United States.
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    United States
    NO MAN IS AN ISLAND
    Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts, Maui Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    During the COVID-19 pandemic, a group of dedicated individuals work to prevent the spread and provide care to the homeless population of Honolulu.
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    United States
    NO PLACE LIKE KASAMA
    Eat. Drink. Film. Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    fNo one expects to open their first dream restaurant during a global pandemic. This film is an intimate, real-time look into the journey of chefs Genie Kwon and Tim Flores throughout 2020, after they leave fine dining to pursue their undying dream of opening a Filipino neighborhood spot - all while COVID-19 decimates the hospitality industry.
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    South Korea
    NOSES ON THE RUN
    Spotlight on Korea Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    In the near future, remote healthcare services have become prevalent. Bohyung, who suffers from chronic allergic rhinitis, receives a very unique treatment in the form of... a nose on the run.
  • United States
    NOSTALGIA
    anemptytextlline
    The film is about a boy who can't accept change. By not accepting it, he pushes himself to try and change it to the good old days.
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    Puerto Rico,United States
    NUEVO RICO
    Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    A brother & sister duo struggle as reggaetón artists living in a dystopian future Puerto Rico, now called Nuevo Rico. They are chased into the rainforest by the authorities where the two come across several local deities seeking a new reggaetón megastar to propel their song into the world. Years later, and far away from Nuevo Rico, the siblings find themselves at a crossroads over creative differences in a now submerged aquatic city of Miami. They seem not only at odds, but a shadow of their former selves, haunted by their chance encounter years earlier.
  • OFF COUNTRY hero image
    Australia
    OFF COUNTRY
    Indigenous Lens, Pacific Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    In Rhian Skirving and John Harvey's documentary OFF COUNTRY, Indigenous teenagers navigate exams, social dramas and maintain meaningful connections to home while at boarding school. Every year, around 3,000 Indigenous students receive scholarships to attend some of Australia's most prestigious boarding schools. It is an immense opportunity, but it also means they must leave their homes and communities. Over the course of a year, OFF COUNTRY follows several such students, who, despite hailing from distinct nations and having vastly different circumstances, each share a commitment to doing themselves and their families proud-no matter the difficulties. -Anderson Le
  • OFFICE ROYALE hero image
    Japan
    OFFICE ROYALE
    Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    The 'battle royale' of Office Ladies is here! Naoko Tanaka (Nao) is an ordinary office lady, who witnesses the endless violence between the warring OL factions within her place of employment. Each faction is run by an office lady who has proven themself to be successful in both battle and the business field. While most employees work under a certain faction, Nao stands clear of the conflict and declares her neutrality as a normal office lady. The factions are then blindsided by a newcomer, Ran Hojo, who quickly defeats everyone within the company. After extending her control over many factions throughout the city, Ran establishes herself as an up-and-coming top office lady. But soon she catches the eyes of the Tom Sun company, who kidnap Nao and holds her hostage. After a battle between Ran and the Tom Sun, Nao discovers new abilities that may allow her to secure the top office lady position for herself... One of the funniest, most entertaining, action packed films at HIFF41, not to be missed. -Kanani Sato
  • Taiwan ROC
    OFFING
    HIFF XR Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    This experience will be FREE to the public and will be available in-person at the Entrepreneurs Sandbox NOV 20 & 21 from 12:00PM – 6:00PM. Visitors are REQUIRED to register in advance for a time-slot to participate. On a volcanic island located southeastern of Taiwan lives an Austronesian descent - the Tao tribe. A-Lan, one of the younger generations who return home, has found a way of living, yet he is still torn between traditional and modern lives. Step onto the island and surrounding waters through this VR experience.
  • OKAGESAMA DE ~HAWAII NIKKEI WOMEN'S TRAJECTORY hero image
    Japan
    OKAGESAMA DE ~HAWAII NIKKEI WOMEN'S TRAJECTORY
    Documentary Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    On February 8, 1885, the first 153 Japanese immigrants arrived in Hawai'i to work in the plantations. Almost 150 years later, "Nikkei" have become one of the most influential groups to shape the Hawai'i we know today. In OKAGESAMA DE ~HAWAII NIKKEI WOMEN'S TRAJECTORY, filmmaker Hiroyuki Matsumoto focuses on documenting testimonials and stories of Nisei women, especially stories about their parents, the Issei generation, unveiling stories about plantation life, WWII, and their contribution to Hawai'i in reshaping government and society during the post-war. This documentary is cut and dry in its intent; To serve as a comprehensive patchwork of interviews with community leaders, including Barbara Kawakami, former Bishop Yoshiaki Fujitani, Margaret Oda, former Governor Neil Abercrombie, and others who offer revelations, memories, and insights before they fade away from history. -Anderson Le
  • ONE SECOND hero image
    China
    ONE SECOND
    Spotlight on China
    anemptytextlline
    China's Zhang Yimou is a giant of international cinema. His many films, including RAISE THE RED LANTERN, HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS, and SHADOW have cemented his place in history. With ONE SECOND, he offers a powerful reminder of why film matters. A touching drama set against striking desert landscapes and marked by Zhang's characteristic flashes of humour, this is a fable about how cinema can inspire us. Towards the end of the Cultural Revolution, when movies were one of the few cultural experiences available to China's masses, the film's nameless hero (Zhang Yi) is sent to a remote labour camp for taking part in a fight. He escapes, but instead of returning to crime, his one aim is to see a screening of a newsreel where his daughter has been captured briefly on screen, immortalized as a model student and worker. In this journey towards a fleeting, cinematic reunion with his beloved daughter, his unexpected companions include a scruffy orphan girl named Liu (Liu Haocun) - pursuing her own secret search for celluloid - and Fan (Fan Wei), who goes by Mr. Movie and is widely known as the best projectionist around. In one standout sequence, a reel of film has been damaged in the mud and Fan recruits an entire village to clean the long, precious spool and restore it to its former glory. ONE SECOND marks Zhang's return to the classic, grand storytelling of his early films. He draws on the specific customs of moviegoing from China in the 1970s to craft an enduring, universal celebration of the transformative power of film. -Toronto International Film Festival
  • ONE SUMMER STORY hero image
    Japan
    ONE SUMMER STORY
    Spotlight on Japan
    anemptytextlline
    High school student Minami has a happy life with her mom and stepdad, enjoys swimming and her favorite anime Buffalo Koteko the Magical Plasterer. She's never met her biological father, but hasn't been too bothered about that. However, when she receives a mysterious handwritten talisman in the mail it sets off a chain of events that peak her interest in her 'real dad'. With help from classmate and fellow Koteko fan Shohei, she learns that her father was the leader of an infamous cult who has renounced his position and disappeared. Determined to track him down, they enlist the assistance of Shohei's brother and discover his location. With a clever ruse in place, Minami masterminds a plan to sneak off from her summer swim camp to meet her enigmatic dad. Her summer adventure begins.... The latest from Shuichi Okita (THE WOODSMAN AND THE RAIN - HIFF32, ECOTHERAPY GETAWAY HOLIDAY - HIFF34 to name a few), ONE SUMMER STORY is a languid, sun-soaked exploration of self discovery and the nature of familial connection, wrapped in a coming of age tale. A heartfelt and uplifting film, a must-see at HIFF41! -Anna Page
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    United States
    ONIPA‘A
    ACM UHM Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Onipaʻa is a story about Liʻi, who during the pandemic finds himself being the lone caretaker of a kalo farm or loʻi as everyone else has lost interest in the long standing cultural art. With news of the loʻi being leveled, Liʻi looks to his son to be the caretaker of the next generation, yet like many his son has also lost interest. Liʻi must then look within himself to over come his prejudice and share his cultural art towards a young caucasian boy named James.
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    United States
    OUR MAKAWAO
    Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts, Maui Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    The town of Makawao in upcountry Maui has a deeply colorful history. From a flourishing Native Hawaiian presence to early missionaries and immigrant labor; to cattle ranches, plantations, WWII, and rodeos, Makawao's story is a fascinating reflection of the diversity of culture in Hawai‘i over the past 150 years. The quaint buildings still stand and many of the kupuna (elders) still remain to tell the story of this special place. This short documentary is driven by their memories and reflections.
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    United States
    OUR WALKS IN HAWAI‘I
    Made In Hawai‘i, Made in Hawai‘i Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    An intimate conversation between grandmother and granddaughter about life together and apart.
  • Pacific Showcase Shorts
    Pacific Showcase Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    PLAYS WITH: DISRUPT | Director: Jennifer Te Atamira Ward-Lealand FIRE IN THE WATER, FIRE IN THE SKY | Director: Mīria George HE KAU HEAHEA A HI‘IAKA | Director: Ty Sanga HOW TO CATCH A TAOTAOMONA | Director: Neil Tinkham KA MO‘OPUNA I KE ALO, THE GRANDCHILD IN THE PRESENCE | Director:  Sancia Shiba Nash MAHÅLANG | Directors: Nathaniel Brown, Elliot deBruyn, Caili Quan MALIHINI | Director: Ha‘aheo Auwae-Dekker PILI KA MO‘O | Director: Justyn Ah Chong SINA MA TINIRAU | Directors: Gavin Arucan, Vilsoni Hereniko URCHIN | Director: Taofia Pelesasa
  • United States
    PAINTING THE APOCALYPSE WITH BOB ROSS
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    In this parody of the popular 1980-90's series "The Joy of Painting with Bob Ross", Bob Ross takes the audience on an artistic journey exploring the many impacts humans are having on our natural landscapes. This film was created by three Maui students as part of Maui Huliau Foundation's Huliau Environmental Filmmaking Club during the 2020-21 school year.
  • Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    PLAYS WITH: ALA KACHUU - TAKE AND RUN BEND THE COCKTAIL PARTY FROM HERE METRO6 A NICKNAME NUEVO RICO SUNSHINE CITY
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    United States
    PANT HOOT
    Documentary Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    At the start of the film we meet Stany Nyandwi as he goes about his daily activities as Primate Manager at Chimp Eden. As the only chimpanzee sanctuary in South Africa, Chimp Eden was created to provide a permanent and safe home for chimpanzees that are rescued from shockingly cruel and abusive conditions. From 17-year-old Sampa who was kept in a small cage for four years and developed extreme social anxiety to 23-year-old Cozy who was bred in a lab in the United States and subjected to horrific medical experiments, Stany cares for the 33 chimpanzees residing at the sanctuary with individualized care and love. At an early age, he began his work with chimps at the Halfway House in Bujumbura, Burundi, a project started by Jane Goodall to rehabilitate chimps traumatized by mistreatment in captivity. Stany endured terrible heartbreak when his country erupted into civil war and the Tutsi began killing innocent Hutu in what was to become the Burundi genocide (Stany is Hutu). After leaving his family in order to give them the best chance for survival, he followed the chimps that were relocated to Kenya for safety purposes and they became like his family. It was then that he discovered his unique gift -- the ability to communicate with mankind's closest biological relatives - chimpanzees. Years later, Stany was eventually reunited with his wife and children; unfortunately, he learned that his parents and brother did not survive the war.
  • United States
    PAPER PLANES
    anemptytextlline
    Our story is about a girl who writes a note about how her days are, and then she folds it into a paper airplane, and lets the note fly. The plane travels over different environments, from crystal-clear ocean waters, to a burning bushfire. In the near future, the same girl gets her note back, as a paper plane. She then finds that her note has altered, being different from what she wrote in the past. Thus, she took action. This short film was produced during the Environmental Justice Reel Camp for Girls organized by Hawai‘i Women in Filmmaking in collaboration with Sierra Club of Hawaiʻi, and made possible thanks to the generous support of the NoVo Foundation and the Gerbode Foundation.
  • PARALLEL MOTHERS hero image
    Spain
    PARALLEL MOTHERS
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Two women, Janis and Ana, coincide in a hospital room where they are going to give birth. Both are single and became pregnant by accident. Janis, middle-aged, doesn't regret it and she is exultant. The other, Ana, an adolescent, is scared, repentant and traumatized. Janis tries to encourage her while they move like sleepwalkers along the hospital corridors. The few words they exchange in these hours will create a very close link between the two, which by chance develops and complicates, and changes their lives in a decisive way. PARALLEL MOTHERS, the latest from Pedro Almodóvar, is essentially a chamber-piece, part ALL ABOUT MY MOTHER and MY DINNER WITH ANDRE. The director leaves his usual camp and irony behind to tell the luminous but down-to-earth tale of two women, played by Penélope Cruz and Milena Smit, who navigate the joy and pain of motherhood. It's high-minded, with lots of twists and turns, with deep, philosophical conversations about Spanish history and the reckoning of it. At 71 years old, the Spanish auteur can pretty much do anything he wants and his latest is a disarmingly moving tribute to the shifting, ever-bending bonds of motherhood, to the inexorable pull of family. -Anderson Le
  • PARIS 13TH DISTRICT hero image
    France
    PARIS, 13TH DISTRICT
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    Emilie is a French-Taiwanese girl in her late 20s or early 30s who hates her call-center job. But as we get to know Emilie, we get a sense that maybe she likes the lack of responsibility that comes with low-entry jobs. She soon meets Camille, a high school teacher, who becomes her roommate. They have sex. Camille soon meets Nora, who returns to Paris to resume her grad school education. Nora is mistaken for Amber, an internet porn celebrity. Three girls and a boy - They're friends, sometimes lovers and often both. The latest film from French auteur Jacques Audiard (A PROPHET), comes a unique adaptation of short stories from "Killing and Dying," by famed cartoonist Adrian Tomine. The script, co-written by another famed auteur Celine Sciamma (PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE) "frenchifies" Tomine's work into a sensual and sexy triptych. Shot in beautiful black and white, it also serves as a spiritual sequel to LA HAINE, but with aimless thirtysomethings finding their path in a sex positive, millennial world. The film's individual stories may be intently meandering at times, but it is made up in spades with the actors' chemistry. -Anderson Le
  • United States
    PAU HANA YEARS
    Made In Hawai‘i
    anemptytextlline
    Presented by ‘Ulu‘ulu Moving Image Archive as part of the 100 Years: Hawaiian Homes Commission Act archival screening series, HIFF presents a free screening of 4 episodes of PBS Hawai‘i's classic series PAU HANA YEARS. PAU HANA YEARS - Golden Anniversary of Molokai Homesteading Part 1:This episode of Pau Hana Years with host Bob Barker celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first Moloka‘i homesteads with a ho‘olaule‘a at the Lili‘uokalani Trust Center in Kalama‘ula. Rarely seen since the original television broadcast in 1975 on PBS Hawai‘i, this program features golden jubilee events including recognition of the first settlers on the homestead and hula by Hālau o Kekuhi under the direction of Edith Kanaka‘ole. PAU HANA YEARS- Golden Anniversary of Molokai Homesteading Part 2: This episode of Pau Hana Years with host Bob Barker celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first Moloka‘i homesteads. Rarely seen since the original television broadcast in 1975 on PBS Hawai‘i, this program features golden jubilee events including a parade with the homestead pioneers and their descendants, and an outrigger canoe race and interviews with brothers Junior and Larry Rawlins and coach August Rawlins. PAU HANA YEARS - Golden Anniversary of Molokai Homesteading Part 3: This episode of Pau Hana Years with host Bob Barker celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first Moloka‘i homesteads. Rarely seen since the original television broadcast in 1975 on PBS Hawai‘i, this program features golden jubilee events including a lū‘au with musical performances by Sterling Mossman and George Helm and his ensemble band. PAU HANA YEARS - Kanikapila Molokai: This episode of Pau Hana Years with host Bob Barker features entertainment highlights of the ho‘olaule‘a and lū‘au celebrating the 50th anniversary of the first Moloka‘i homesteads. Rarely seen since the original television broadcast in 1975 on PBS Hawai‘i, this program features golden jubilee events including musical performances by Benny Kalama, Barney Isaacs and George Helm.
  • United States
    PERFECT.
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    Perfectionism affects everyone differently. For some, perfectionism may motivate them to succeed. For other, it imposes a challenge to produce good work.
  • United States
    PERSPECTIVE
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    A day in the life of a second grader named Christopher Flores.
  • PETIT MAMAN hero image
    France
    PETIT MAMAN
    Panorama
    anemptytextlline
    From director Céline Sciamma (PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE) comes a most magical and intimate portrait of childhood and motherhood. 8-year-old Nelly is spending time at her recently deceased grandmother's house while her mother and father clean out the home. While her parents set about packing, Nelly explores the surrounding woods. While searching for her mother's childhood fort, she encounters Marion, a girl her age with a striking resemblance. The two quickly become friends, they build a fort, make pancakes, and share about their lives. As their bond deepens, the past and the present merge revealing intergenerational insights and intimacies. Told entirely from the perspective of young Nelly and Marion, Sciamma immerses us in a child's eye view. In that process she captures the wonder and imagination of childhood with an honesty that is captivating. Sciamma's most personal film yet, PETIT MAMAN is a tender and beautiful film. -Anna Page
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    United States
    PHOENIX BAKERY: SWEETS FOR THE SWEET
    Eat. Drink. Film. Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    As Los Angeles Chinatown's Phoenix Bakery celebrates its 80th anniversary, three generations of the Chan family explore their legacy and contemplate the bakery's future in the community.
  • United States
    PILI KA MO‘O
    Green Screen Shorts, Indigenous Lens, Pacific Showcase Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    The Fukumitsu ʻOhana (family) of Hakipuʻu are Native Hawaiian taro farmers and keepers of this generational practice. While much of Oʻahu has become urbanized, Hakipuʻu remains a kīpuka (oasis) of traditional knowledge where great chiefs once resided and their bones still remain. The Fukumitsus are tossed into a world of complex real estate and judicial proceedings when nearby Kualoa Ranch, a large settler-owned corporation, destroys their familial burials to make way for continued development plans.
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    United States
    PLANT HEIST
    Green Screen Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    When suspicious packages are found in a small town in northern California, Game Warden Pat Freeling, gets a tip about the peculiar activity. After further investigation he exposes a vast network of illegal plant poachers. These smugglers ravage the landscape as they rip thousands of the native succulent, dudleya farinosa, from their natural habitat. This small unassuming plant carries a hefty bounty on its head internationally, where a single succulent boasts a price tag in the thousands. With the help of volunteers, native plant biologists, and local government, they fight to stop this ecological destruction.
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    South Korea
    PLOT
    Spotlight on Korea Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    CCTV in the elevator, The dark red sewage from a resident's garbage bag makes a small puddle on the elevator floor.The man with the garbage bag gets off and residents get into the elevator one by one.An elementary school girl who sees the black and red sewage seeping out of a newspaper which a resident has hidden and left behind, imagines that it might be human blood.
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    United States
    POSTHUMOUS
    ACM UHM Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    An Early Italian Renaissance sculptor desperate for fame becomes dissatisfied and goes on a rampage destroying her work when it's broken remnants come to life startling the artist and causing a freak accident. After a pause of darkness a spotlight appears illuminating a beautiful plaster statue of a young girl doubled over on a pedestal titled "Unknown".
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    United States
    RADICAL CARE: THE AUNTIE SEWING SQUAD
    Documentary Panorama Shorts
    anemptytextlline
    RADICAL CARE: THE AUNTIE SEWING SQUAD looks at the Auntie Sewing Squad, a group of mostly women of color volunteers who came together following the U.S. government's botched response to the COVID-19 crisis. The Aunties sew masks for farmworkers, unhoused people, refugee and immigrant groups, First Nations tribes, recently incarcerated people, Black Lives Matter demonstrators, and others in need in the U.S. Using images, voices and sounds generated by the Aunties themselves, in tandem with Kronos Quartet's performance of Susie Ibarra's "Pulsation," this clip seeks to inspire others to work toward radical care in the time of coronavirus.
  • United States
    RAINY DAY
    Student Showcase
    anemptytextlline
    A sad, lonely girl comes home on a rainy day. On her way to her house, she finds a flower that brings back memories of her parents who passed away. While remembering the happy times, she realizes her parents are still with her.
  • United States
    REALIZATION: A GENERATIONAL AWAKENING
    anemptytextlline
    Three Gen Z teens discuss their experiences with queer identity over the course of the pandemic, and what this means for us as a generation moving forward.
  • RED ROCKET
    United States
    RED ROCKET
    New American Perspectives
    anemptytextlline
    The audacious new film from writer-director Sean Baker (THE FLORIDA PROJECT, TANGERINE), starring Simon Rex in a magnetic, live-wire performance, RED ROCKET is a darkly funny, raw, and humane portrait of a uniquely American hustler and a hometown that barely tolerates him. This film is presented as part of the New American Perspectives program in partnership with the Vilcek Foundation. HIFF is honored to feature producer Shih-Ching Tsou as a 2021 program participant. An extended discussion with Shih-Ching Tsou will be available to view online during the Festival via the HIFF streaming app, and HIFF's Facebook page.
  • United States
    REEL WĀHINE OF HAWAI‘I: SEASON 3
    Made In Hawai‘i
    anemptytextlline
    Hawai‘i Women in Filmmaking has produced three seasons of REEL WĀHINE OF HAWAI‘I, redressing the conversation behind gender inequality in the film industry and recontextualizing Hawaiian and local stories through the female perspective and gaze. Through documenting the lives of women filmmakers in Hawai‘i, various untold stories are revealed about the lives of filmmakers striving to make their art, and have their voices heard. In season three, which was filmed by an all-women crew, six portraits of female filmmakers celebrate their history and the journey to become leaders and creators behind the camera. Real-life stories of Native Hawaiian activists and their struggle for autonomy over their land, culture, and bodies can be seen in the films that these six women craft. With varying perspectives on culture and Hawai‘i's relationship to the United States of America, a colorful mosaic of perspectives is formed to accentuate the power of women behind the camera and the power of cinema for small communities. Full of bravery and creative fervor, Hawai‘i women in film, specifically these six women, have opened doors for future women filmmakers to walk through with ease, comfort, and power. The third season of this series spotlights: Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu, Joy Chong-Stannard, Joan Lander, Kimberlee Bassford, Meleanna Aluli Meyer, and Zoë Eisenberg. -Kanani Lyons
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    Hong Kong SAR China
    reFASHIONED
    Green Screen
    anemptytextlline
    In post-industrial Hong Kong, the landfills are close to capacity, neighboring mainland China has closed the door on importing recycling from other countries and consumer purchasing fervor shows no signs of slowing down in the region. reFASHIONED follows the stories of three entrepreneurial innovators taking steps to motivate the fashion industry to evolve in the face of such adversity. Edwin Keh and his team of scientists at HKRITA have developed radical new technologies that enable blended textiles to be recycled for the first time; Former fashion buyer Sarah Garner was compelled to create Retykle, an online platform selling second hand quality children's clothing. Sarah must overcome an age-old mindset to reach consumers and achieve commercial success; Eric Swinton is the founder of Vcycle, a grassroots organization that aims to simultaneously tackle Hong Kong's plastic waste and social issues by paying elderly waste pickers a fair wage. These narratives are set against a backdrop of the rise and fall of the 'made in Hong Kong' industrial era through the eyes of the people who lived it, and begins to stitch together what the future of sustainable fashion and the beginnings of a circular economy in the city may look like... -Anderson Le
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    United Kingdom
    RIDE THE WAVE
    Surf Cinema
    anemptytextlline
    A young surfer hailing from an unlikely destination strives to make it big in RIDE THE WAVE. 14-year-old Ben Larg has made a name for himself as a Scottish surfing champion. Born and raised in Tiree, an island in the Scottish Hebrides with a population of only around 650, Ben started surfing at a young age, encouraged by his surf-loving dad and adventurous family. Surfing competitively from the age of 11, Ben has traveled around the world and surfed with some of the best in his age group. But Ben has bigger dreams, more specifically big wave dreams. RIDE THE WAVE follows Ben and his family as he trains to ride one of the biggest and most dangerous cold water waves in the world at Mullaghmore in Ireland. With this unforgiving wave, if he gets it right, he joins an elite group. If he gets it wrong, the consequences are terrifying. Danger, opportunity, and parental dilemma collide propelling Ben and his family towards an unknown destiny. -Anna Page
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    China
    RIPPLES OF LIFE
    Kau Ka Hōkū Award Nominee, Spotlight on China
    anemptytextlline
    An inventive film about the making of..a film, RIPPLES OF LIFE is a clever satire, both amusingly humorous and deeply contemplative. From newcomer director/writer Wei Shujun this delightful ode to the absurdity of filmmaking unfolds through a triptych of stories, told from the perspective of three different protagonists, all involved in a film production set in a small town. The first chapter revolves around Gu, a young restaurateur whose family have been hired to cater for a film production in the small town of Yong'an. The film, ironically, is set in Yong'an and centers around a young restaurateur, bored with her life in the small town. Gu is indeed bored with her life as a new mother, working for her in-laws at the restaurant. When the production asks Gu to stand-in as a model for the lead character, s