Moonlight Sonata: Deafness in Three Movements by Irene Taylor Brodsky
Moonlight Sonata: Deafness in Three Movements by Irene Taylor Brodsky

The Ashland Independent Film Festival announced its lineup of over 150 films for the eighteenth annual festival, April 11-15, 2019, in Ashland, Oregon.

Program highlights include Portland-based filmmaker Irene Taylor Brodsky’s Moonlight Sonata: Deafness in Three Movementswith the filmmaker present on opening night, April 11, accompanied by her son and parents who are featured in the film. Moonlight Sonata is one of several features in the program that premiered at Sundance in January 2019, including Penny Lane’s Hail Satan?, Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar’s American Factory, Ivete Lucas and Patrick Bresnan’s Pahokee, and Nanfu Wang’s One Child Nation. Actors James Le Gros and Jesse Borrego will be accompanying the world premiere screening of Gary Lundgren’s Phoenix, Oregon on April 13. Filmmakers Harrod Blank and Jessica Oreck will bring their films Why Can’t I Be Me? Around You and One Man Dies a Million Times, fresh from their South by Southwest premieres in March. Other special screenings include archivist Rick Prelinger’s presentation of highlights from 13 years of Lost Landscapes of San Francisco, his screening of archival rarities presented to rousing audience participation annually in its home city. And Eliza McNitt’s Spheres, a virtual reality journey to uncover the hidden songs of the cosmos, executive produced by Darren Aronofsky and narrated by Jessica Chastain, Patti Smith, and Millie Bobby Brown, will be presented on three Oculus Rift VR systems at ScienceWorks Hands-on Museum from April 12-14.

This year’s festival will include a 40th Anniversary tribute to Apocalypse Now, and its inspirations and legacies. Special Guest Eleanor Coppola will be in attendance for the screening and Q&A for her classic 1991 documentary Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Odyssey. An intimate look at the making of Francis Ford Coppola’s 1979 classic Apocalypse Now, Hearts of Darkness combines documentary interviews with outtakes from the film and rare documentary footage shot on the set by Eleanor Coppola. Additional “Expanded Cinema” components of the tribute branch out from cinema to live theater, music, and visual art.

AIFF will present Rogue Awards to two special guests, Alex Rivera and Cristina Ibarra. The Infiltrators, co-directed by Rivera and Ibarra, won both the NEXT Jury and Audience awards at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, and will screen at the Festival along with Rivera’s Sleep Dealer and Ibarra’s Las Marthas. Alex Rivera is a filmmaker who, for the past twenty years, has been telling new, urgent, and visually adventurous Latino stories. His work illuminates two massive and parallel realities: the globalization of information through the internet, and the globalization of families and communities through mass migration. Cristina Ibarra has been making award-winning films that explore the U.S. – Mexico border for the past sixteen years. Her most recent documentary, Las Marthas, premiered on Independent Lens in 2014. The New York Times called it “a striking alternative portrait of border life.” Rivera and Ibarra will be joined by filmmaker Peter Bratt (Dolores) and playwright Octavio Solis (OSF’s Mother Road) for a TalkBack on April 12 titled “Art Against the Wall: Illuminating the Border.” The recipient of AIFF’s 2019 Pride Award, honoring figures who have made significant contributions to LGBTQ media, is B. Ruby Rich, a Professor of Film and Digital Media at University of California, Santa Cruz and Editor in Chief of Film Quarterly (UC Press), the oldest film journal in the U.S.A. As a renowned film critic and scholar, she writes widely in both the scholarly and academic press. Credited with coining the term “New Queer Cinema,” she is the author of New Queer Cinema: The Director’s Cut (Duke, 2013) and Chick Flicks: Theories and Memories of the Feminist Film Movement (Duke, 1998). Rich has curated a series of four films on “Queer Intersectionality,” putting queerness in juxtaposition and dialogue with kindred communities. She will be joined by the renowned British media artist Isaac Julien, who will present his “New Queer Cinema” work from 1991, Young Soul Rebels, along with filmmaker Erin Palmquist (From Baghdad to The Bay) and, via Skype, Yance Ford (Strong Island).

This year, AIFF’s annual “Indie Institution” tribute will honor Kino Lorber, Inc., founded in 2009 by industry veterans Donald Krim and Richard Lorber. Kino Lorber films in this year’s program will be Chef Flynn, What is Democracy? (released in conjunction with Zeitgeist Films), and Highway Patrolman, a 4K restoration of the 1991 Spanish-language feature by director Alex Cox, who will introduce the screening.


American Factory
Breaking Habits
Carmine Street Guitars
Chef Flynn
Clean Hands
Finding Bobbi
For the Birds
From Baghdad to The Bay
Hail Satan?
Hear and Now
Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse
Hearts of Glass – A Vertical Farm Takes Root in Wyoming
If the Dancer Dances
Inquiring Nuns
Inventing Tomorrow
Lost Landscapes of San Francisco
Making Montgomery Clift
Las Marthas
Midnight Traveler
Moonlight Sonata: Deafness in Three Movements
One Child Nation
Queen of Paradis
The Rescue List
Satan and Adam
Secret Screening
Strong Island
The Weight of Water
What is Democracy?
The Whistleblower of My Lai
Why Can’t I Be Me? Around You
The Woman Who Loves Giraffes


Aguirre, the Wrath of God
Highway Patrolman
In Reality
The Infiltrators
International Falls
Little Woods
One Man Dies a Million Times
Original Sin
Phoenix, Oregon
Princess of the Row
Sleep Dealer
Stories of Our Lives
Young Soul Rebels


Curated Programs

Animated Worlds: Familial Bonds with Mark Shapiro
CineSpace 2018
Kid Flicks One
Kid Flicks Two
Raiding the Archives with Vanessa Renwick and Rick Prelinger

Competition Programs

Short Docs 
Short Stories #1
Short Stories #2
Short Stories and Docs: Northwest Grown

Locals Only 1: Launch Student Films
Locals Only 2: Narrative Shorts
Locals Only 3: Documentary Shorts


The Second Coming of Klaus Kinski (Theatre)
Alone |Together with Caballito Negro and Bruce Bayard and Todd Barton (Music)


Saturday, April 13, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.: Hands-on film activities including Spheres, an interactive virtual reality series exploring the music of the cosmos.


April 10–May 25, 2019 | Schneider Museum of Art
Opening Reception: April 10, 5-7 p.m. for general public

April 1–30, 2019 | Hanson Howard Gallery
Reception: April 11, 5:30-7 p.m., artist talk by Deborah Oropallo, 6 p.m.

Artists: Matthew Picton, Stephanie Syjuco, Bruce Bayard, Deborah Oropallo, and Morehshin Allahyari


April 12: Art Against the Wall: Illuminating the Border
April 13: Filming and Protecting our Endangered Environment
April 14: From Southern Oregon to the World: The Making and Releasing of Phoenix, Oregon

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