The 15th Annual “fiercely independent” Woodstock Film Festival runs Wednesday, October 15, through Sunday, October 19, with more than 150 films, panels, performances and special events. Screenings and events take place in the historic arts colony of Woodstock, NY, and the neighboring towns of Rhinebeck, Rosendale, Saugerties and Kingston, just two hours from New York City in the Hudson Valley Catskills. The festival was founded by filmmakers Meira Blaustein and Laurent Rejto.
OPENING NIGHT FILM
After a troubled youth and 18 years in prison, William Garnett is being released. With the help of an idealistic parole agent and his new-found Islamic faith, Garnett struggles to rebuild his life and overcome the violent impulses which possess him. However, Bill Agati, the Sheriff of the small New Mexico border county where Garnett is released, has other ideas. Convinced that Garnett is unredeemable and is a threat to the security of his county, Agati launches a campaign to return Garnett to prison for life.
Two Men in Town stars Academy Award® winner Forest Whitaker (The Last King of Scotland), Harvey Keitel, Brenda Blethyn, Luis Guzman, Dolores Héredia, Ellen Burstyn, Tim Guinee, Reg E. Cathey, and is directed by Rachid Bouchareb (Indigènes (Days of Glory)) and produced by Allen Bain (The Cake Eaters, Room, and Blackballed: The Bobby Dukes Story), both of whom have shown films at the Woodstock Film Festival in previous years.
CLOSING NIGHT FILM
The Better Angels, which takes its name from a line in Abraham Lincoln’s first Inaugural Address, tells the story of Lincoln’s childhood in the harsh wilderness of Indiana, the hardships that shaped him and the tragedy that marked him forever. Using black and white cinematography to conjure an America where the land was raw, this film sheds new light on the formative years of the future president and the two women who molded him into one of the most revered men in American history.
The film stars Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty, The Great Gatsby), Diane Kruger (Inglourious Basterds), Brit Marling (I Origins, Another Earth), and Wes Bentley (The Hunger Games, American Beauty), and was produced by Academy Award® Nominee Terrence Malick (Days of Heaven, Tree of Life), Nicolas Gonda, Jake DeVito and Charley Beil
Directed by Caryn Waechter, The Sisterhood of Night is a story of friendship and loyalty set against the backdrop of a modern-day Salem witch trial. Shot on location in Kingston, NY, the film chronicles a group of girls who have slipped out of the world of social media into a mysterious world deep in the woods.
The Sisterhood of Night stars Georgie Henley, Kara Hayward, Kal Penn, Laura Fraser, Willa Cuthrell, Olivia De Jonge, Jessica Hecht, and Neal Huff.
Creep, directed by Patrick Brice, is a two-man story set in a remote mountain cabin in the woods. Joseph, expecting to die soon of an unstated illness, hires Aaron through an ad on Craigslist to document the end of his life as a legacy to his unborn son. Creep will be presented by actor, co-writer and co-producer Mark Duplass, who will lead a discussion following the screening.
Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles, directed by Chuck Workman, looks at the remarkable genius of Orson Welles on the eve of his centenary – the enigma of his career as a Hollywood star, a Hollywood director, and a crucially important independent filmmaker. Director Workman will be on hand for Q&A following the screening.
The Fly Room, directed by Alexis Gambis, is a wondrous story that captures the mysterious inner world of a child’s imagination at the brink of scientific discovery. The film will be introduced by Paul Hoffman, President and CEO of Liberty Science Center and the Creative Director of Beyond Rubik’s Cube.
Antarctica 3D: On the Edge, directed by Jon Bowermaster, witnesses the National Geographic explorer and his adventurous team travel along the frozen coastline by sea kayak, ice-worthy sailboat, and on foot to gain an up-close look and attempt to better understand just how the seventh continent is changing. Staying for a Q&A following the screening, filmmaker and WFF guest Jon Bowermaster will also be featured on the “Impact Filmmaking” panel.
Just Before I Go, directed by Courteney Cox, follows Ted as he decides to end his mediocre life. Before doing so, he returns to his hometown to revisit the demons of his past: the cruel school teacher; the relentless bully; the girl who got away. Courteney Cox will take part in a Q&A following the screening, as well as being featured on the “Women in the Director’s Chair” panel to discuss her feature-length directorial debut.
2014 NARRATIVE FEATURES
Feature narratives include: All Relative, The American Side, Amira & Sam, Arwad, Before I Disappear, Bread and Butter, Creep, Eat with Me, The Fly Room, Friends and Romans, I Believe in Unicorns, Just Before I Go, The Last Time You Had Fun, Late Phases, Listening, Little Accidents, Mahjong and the West, The Man Who Saved the World, Patrick’s Day, The Red Robin, Runoff, Sacrifice, The Sisterhood of Night, Uncertain Terms, White Rabbit, WildLike, The Young Kieslowski
2014 DOCUMENTARY FEATURES
Documentaries include: A Small Section of the World, A Snake Gives Birth to a Snake, Angel Azul, Antarctica 3D: On the Edge, Down in Shadowland, East Jerusalem/West Jerusalem, Enquiring Minds: The Untold Story of the Man Behind the National Enquirer, The Hand That Feeds, How I Got Over, Killswitch, Limited Partnership, Little White Lie, Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles, Mentor, Pauly Shore Stands Alone, Playing With Parkinson’s, Queens & Cowboys: A Straight Year On The Gay Rodeo, Red Lines, SlingShot, Stray Dog, Two Raging Grannies, Untitled Film On “World Citizen #1” Garry Davis, Why I’m Not on Facebook