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The Wide Lens of IFFBoston

The Independent Film Festival of Boston, which gets underway today and is largely programmed at the Somerville Theatre, takes viewers from the streets of Tehran to their own backyards.

Greater Boston’s artistic and cultural communities are quickly emerging from the shadows of our dominant neighbor, New York City. We are growing our own and people have noticed.

The IFFBoston is part of that pursuit, sealing up the void of a “big” film festival – an event the city previously lacked. It has gained a national and international reputation after featuring such past high-profile hits as "Winter's Bone" and "500 Days of Summer." With 54 directors taking part and over 20,000 viewers expected this year, IFFBoston will take audiences around the globe while still showcasing stories from our own local neighborhoods.

In its ninth year, IFFBoston will debut 58 feature-length films and 27 short films of all genres – both documentaries and narratives. International highlights include:

  • 13 Assassins: an elaborate display of samurai battles set in feudal Japan by famed director, Takashi Miike.
  • Burma Soldier: a documentary examining the real-life story of Myo Myint, a former Burmese soldier turned activist who was imprisoned and tortured for 15 years after speaking out against his country’s oppressive military. Co-director Nic Dunlop shares intimate images and interviews  from his years as a photojournalist in Burma in this film.
  • Circumstance: a narrative exploring two Iranian teens’ artistic and sexual journey and the consequences that coincide in a fundamentalist-driven nation.
  • Cultures of Resistance: Lara Lee’s brave documentary, spanning five continents, looks at the cultural differences between the world’s power struggles and protest movements.
  • Granito: How to Nail a Dictator: re-visits an infamous case of Mayan genocide in 1980s Guatemala.

Films with a local flavor include:

  • Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop: a look inside the mind of the Brookline-native and comic-genius as he attempts to continue a successful career after being ousted from his dream job.
  • Push: Madison vs. Madison tells the story of a varsity basketball team at Roxbury’s Madison Park Vocational Technical School, the struggles they endure in their violent community and their father-figure coach.
  •  We Still Live Here follows the Wampanoag Language Reclamation Project, natives residing in southeastern Massachusetts who are looking to restore their rapidly-declining language and culture.
  • Heaven + Earth + Joe Davis profiles the controversial MIT professor and innovative "science-artist".

The Festival runs April 27 through May 4 and features talks with directors and industry after-parties. A Chrome pass allows unlimited access while individual film tickets are also available.

Click here to view film dates and times and to purchase tickets.

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