Patti Cake$
Patti Cake$

The 60th San Francisco International Film Festival‘s Centerpiece film will be Patti Cake$ (USA 2016), first-time feature director Geremy Jasper’s dynamic and inspiring film which tells the story of Patricia “Patti Cake$” Dombrowski, a big girl with a big mouth and big dreams of hip-hop superstardom. Patti Cake$ was a Spring 2014 SF Film Society / KRF Filmmaking Grant winner.

The celebratory Centerpiece screening will take place on Wednesday, April 12, 7:30 pm at the historic Castro Theatre.

In addition to Patti Cake$, three documentary features, one narrative feature, one narrative short and three documentary shorts-all of which received funding or creative support through various SF Film Society artist development programs-will be included in this year’s Festival lineup.

San Francisco native Peter Bratt’s feature documentary Dolores and Oakland-based filmmaker Peter Nicks’ feature documentary The Force both received Documentary Film Fund Awards. Directing and screenwriting team Alex and Andrew Smith’s Walking Out was a SF Film Society / KRF Filmmaking Grant winner, and Andrew Smith is a current FilmHouse Resident. Joe Talbot, director of the narrative short American Paradise, is a current FilmHouse Resident and the feature film expansion of his short recently won a SF Film Society / KRF Filmmaking Grant. Mohammad Gorjestani, director of the documentary shorts Happy Birthday Mario Woods and The Boombox Collection: Zion I, and Mario Furloni and Kate McLean, co-directors of the documentary short Gut Hack, were all FilmHouse Residents during the development of their films. McLean’s FilmHouse residency also included the development of Festival documentary feature Bill Nye: Science Guy, on which she is a producer.

SAN FRANCISCO FILM SOCIETY-SUPPORTED FILMS IN THE FESTIVAL PROGRAM

Centerpiece: Patti Cake$ (Geremy Jasper, USA)
The unqualified breakout hit of this year’s Sundance Festival, Geremy Jasper’s debut feature erupts with head-nodding beats from the opening scene and features the dynamic and stirring performance of Danielle Macdonald as the title character, a young woman who uses her lyrics to escape, daring to dream of something better outside of her New Jersey working class life. She gathers an emotionally damaged multi-racial motley crew around her to create funny and invigorating musical sequences.
Spring 2014 SF Film Society / KRF Filmmaking Grant winner for packaging

Bill Nye: Science Guy (David Alvarado, Jason Sussberg, USA)
The effortlessly charming, bow-tie sporting scientist Bill Nye is beloved by all generations who grew up watching his show Bill Nye the Science Guy, but vilified by climate change deniers and religious fundamentalists. Skilled documentarians (and fans!) David Alvarado and Jason Sussberg travel along with Nye as he works tirelessly to make the world a better place through science advocacy and education and reflects on his life and career as one of America’s most famous science minds.
Kate McLean, a producer on the film, was a SF Film Society FilmHouse Resident during its development.

Dolores (Peter Bratt, USA)
Lifelong community organizer Dolores Huerta founded the United Farm Workers with Cesar Chavez in 1962 and directed the decisive national boycott of Delano grapes. San Francisco native Peter Bratt’s vibrant historical documentary revisits those landmark accomplishments and Huerta’s tireless activism against poverty, pesticides, racism, and injustice. Huerta’s myriad battles and sacrifices as the lone woman on the UFW board and the mother of 11 children are integral to her story, and to the times.
2016 SF Film Society Documentary Film Fund winner for postproduction

The Force (Peter Nicks, USA)
For the powerful second chapter in his projected trilogy of films centered on the relationship between public institutions and community, Pete Nicks takes a powerful, immersive look at the Oakland Police Department. Filming from 2014-2016 with unprecedented access, Nicks captures a particularly turbulent time at the agency. Intended as a catalyst for conversation and change, Nick’s empathetic observational style avoids easy generalizations and upends expectations resulting in a rich, thought-provoking depiction of what policing looks like at a watershed moment.
2015 SF Film Society Documentary Film Fund winner for postproduction

Walking Out (Alex Smith, Andrew Smith, USA)
A moose hunting trip into Montana’s mountains, meant as a rite of passage and to bridge a growing divide between a divorced dad (Matt Bomer, A Normal Heart) and his young teenage son (Josh Wiggins, Hellion, Festival 2014), takes a dangerous turn under wintry conditions in Alex and Andrew Smith’s haunting adaptation of David Quammen’s short story, a thrilling, deceptively simple drama that packs an emotional wallop and features some of the year’s best performances.
Andrew Smith is a current SF Film Society FilmHouse Resident
Fall 2016 SF Film Society / KRF Filmmaking Grant winner for postproduction

SHORT FILMS

American Paradise (Joe Talbot, USA)
A desperate man plans a bank heist and comes up against the stark realities of white privilege in this extraordinary story inspired by true events.
Joe Talbot is a current SF Film Society FilmHouse Resident
Fall 2016 SF Film Society / KRF Filmmaking Grant for packaging of the feature film expansion of American Paradise

The Boombox Collection: Zion I (Mohammad Gorjestani, USA)
In this intimate portrait and performance piece, Oakland resident Stephen Gaines, frontman of underground hip-hop duo Zion 1, reflects on his legacy and the question of artistic integrity vs. mainstream success.
Mohammad Gorjestani was a SF Film Society FilmHouse Resident during the development of this film.

Gut Hack (Mario Furloni, Kate McLean, USA)
To treat his chronic gastro-intestinal problems, Josiah devises a bold biological experiment that involves the exchange of bodily excretions.
Mario Furloni and Kate McLean were SF Film Society FilmHouse Residents during the development of this film.

Happy Birthday Mario Woods (Mohammad Gorjestani, USA)
A bereaved mother in Oakland, CA, tends the grave of her son and remembers his life.
Mohammad Gorjestani was a SF Film Society FilmHouse Resident during the development of this film.

Share this article ...