An Almost Ordinary Summer, directed by Simone Godano
An Almost Ordinary Summer, directed by Simone Godano

The 31st annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) will screen 188 films from 81 countries, opening with An Almost Ordinary Summer, directed by Simone Godano, on Friday, January 3, and close with Military Wives, directed by Peter Cattaneo on Sunday, January 12.

PSIFF will open with An Almost Ordinary Summer on Friday, January 3. In this delightful and big-hearted Italian farce, a seaside summer vacation erupts into class and sexual warfare when two middle-aged grandfathers — the rich, cosmopolitan Tony and the hunky, blue-collar Carlo – announce to their big, shocked families their plan to marry. The film stars Alessandro Gassmann, Jasmine Trinca, Fabrizio Bentivoglio, Filippo Scicchitano, and is directed by Simone Godano.

The festival will close with Military Wives on Sunday, January 12. This charming ensemble dramedy is based on a true story about the wives of deployed British soldiers who find harmony in a new base camp choir, where Tears for Fears is part of their repertoire, and become a global sensation. The film stars Kristin Scott Thomas, Sharon Horgan, Jason Flemyng and is directed by Peter Cattaneo.

The line-up includes a focus on cinema from Italy, Talking Pictures, International Feature Film Oscar® Submissions, New Voices New Visions, Modern Masters, Queer Cinema, True Stories, World Cinema Now, and more.

“It’s an extraordinary pleasure to be sharing this year’s festival lineup with the world, my first as Artistic Director,” said PSIFF Artistic Director Lili Rodriguez. “In tradition with previous years, we’ve looked back at an excellent year of international cinema and cherry-picked some of the best in the circuit, as well as some undiscovered gems. From award-winners and hopefuls to smaller, independent stories that stick with you, this year’s lineup showcases an exciting group of diverse and powerful voices.”

TALKING PICTURES & BOOK TO SCREEN

The Talking Pictures program includes in-depth discussions with directors, writers and actors from the year’s top titles. The following films selected for this year’s program with guests attending are:

Hustlers (USA) with director Lorene Scafaria and “The Hustlers at Scores” author Jessica Pressler

JoJo Rabbit (USA)with Caging Skies author Christine Leunens

Motherless Brooklyn (USA)with author Jonathan Lethem and writer/director/producer/actor Edward Norton

AWARDS BUZZ – BEST INTERNATIONAL FEATURE FILM SUBMISSIONS

This section is selected by Festival programmers as the strongest entries in this year’s Academy Awards® race and will screen 51 official submissions from the Best International Feature Film category. A special jury of international film critics will review these films to present the FIPRESCI Award for Best Foreign Language Film of the Year, as well as Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Screenplay in this category.

1982 (Lebanon), Director Oualid Mouaness

Adam (Morocco), Director Maryam Touzani

Ága (Bulgaria), Director Milko Lazarov

And Then We Danced (Sweden), Director Levan Akin

Antigone (Canada), Director Sophie Deraspe

Atlantics (Senegal), Director Mati Diop

The Awakening of the Ants (Costa Rica), Director Antonella Sudasassi Furnis

Beanpole (Russia), Director Kantemir Balagov

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind (UK), Director Chiwetel Ejiofor

Buoyancy (Australia), Director Rodd Rathjen

The Chambermaid (Mexico), Director Lila Avilés

Commitment (Turkey), Director Semih Kaplanoğlu (North American Premiere)

Corpus Christi (Poland), Director Jan Komasa

The Delegation (Albania), Director Bujar Alimani

Finding Farideh (Iran), Director Azadeh Moussavi, Kourosh Ataee

Gaza (Ireland), Director Gary Keane, Andrew McConnell

Gully Boy (India), Director Zoya Akhtar

Heroic Losers (Argentina), Director Sebastián Borensztein (U.S. Premiere)

Honeyland (North Macedonia), Director Ljubomir Stefanov, Tamara Kotevska

Incitement (Israel), Director Yaron Zilberman (U.S. Premiere)

Instinct (Netherlands), Director Halina Reijn

Invisible Life (Brazil), Director Karim Aïnouz

It Must Be Heaven (Palestine), Director Elia Suleiman

Les Misérables (France), Director Ladj Ly

Let There Be Light (Slovakia), Director Marko Skop

M for Malaysia (Malaysia), Director Dian Lee, Ineza Roussille

Monos (Colombia), Director Alejandro Landes

The Mover (Latvia), Director Dāvis Sīmanis

Our Mothers (Belgium), Director Cesar Diaz

Out Stealing Horses (Norway), Director Hans Petter Moland

Pain And Glory (Spain), Director Pedro Almodóvar

The Painted Bird (Czech Republic), Director Václav Marhoul

Papicha (Algeria), Director Mounia Meddour

Parasite (South Korea), Director Bong Joon-Ho

The Perfect Candidate (Saudi Arabia), Director Haifaa Al-Mansour

Queen of Hearts (Denmark), Director May el-Toukhy

The Red Pigeon (Pakistan), Director Kamal Khan

Retablo (Peru), Director Alvaro Delgado Aparicio

Spider (Chile), Director Andrés Wood

The Steed (Mongolia), Director Erdenebileg Ganbold

System Crasher (Germany), Director Nora Fingscheidt

Tel Aviv on Fire (Luxembourg), Director Sameh Zoabi

Those Who Remained (Hungary), Director Barnabás Tóth

Truth and Justice (Estonia), Director Tanel Toom (North American Premiere)

Tu Me Manques (Bolivia), Director Rodrigo Bellott

Verdict (Philippines), Director Raymund Ribay Gutierrez

Weathering With You (Japan), Director Makoto Shinkai

When Tomatoes Met Wagner (Greece), Director Marianna Economou

The Whistlers (Romania), Director Corneliu Porumboiu

A White, White Day (Iceland), Director Hlynur Palmason

Zana (Kosovo), Director Antoneta Kastrati (U.S. Premiere)

FOCUS ON ITALY

From the land of beautiful art, rich history, and mouth-watering cuisine, join us as we highlight exceptional Italian cinema.

The Champion (Italy), Director Leonardo D’Agostini (North American Premiere)

The Disappearance of My Mother (Italy), Director Beniamino Barrese

Martin Eden (Italy/France/Germany), Director Pietro Marcello

Simple Women (Italy/Romania), Director Chiara Malta (U.S. Premiere)

Sole (Italy), Director Carlo Sironi

A Soul Journey (UK/Italy), Director Marco Della Fonte (World Premiere)

The Traitor (Italy), Director Marco Bellocchio

MODERN MASTERS

New films, classic auteurs.

About Endlessness (Sweden/Germany/Norway), Director Roy Andersson (U.S. Premiere)

Desert One (USA), Director Barbara Kopple

First Love (Japan), Director Takashi Miike

Mr. Jones (Poland/UK/Ukraine), Director Agnieszka Holland

Nomad: In The Footsteps Of Bruce Chatwin (UK), Director Werner Herzog

So Long, My Son (China), Director Wang Xiaoshuai

The Truth (France), Director Hirokazu Koreeda

Varda By Agnès (France/Germany), Director Agnès Varda

NEW VOICES NEW VISIONS

Unique viewpoints from first- and second-time directors.

Arab Blues (France/Tunisia), Director Manele Labidi

Blow the Man Down (USA), Director Bridget Savage Cole, Danielle Krudy

The Good Intentions (Argentina), Director Ana García Blaya (U.S. Premiere)

Hearts and Bones (Australia), Director Ben Lawrence

Lara (Germany), Director Jan-Ole Gerster

Lina from Lima (Chile/Peru/Argentina), Director Maria Paz González (U.S. Premiere)

Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom (Bhutan), Director Pawo Choyning Dorji (U.S. Premiere)

Murmur (Canada), Director Heather Young (U.S. Premiere)

Patrick (Belgium), Director Tim Mielants

A Son (France/Tunisia/Lebanon/Qatar), Director Mehdi M. Barsaoui (U.S. Premiere)

Song Without A Name (Peru/Spain/USA/Chile), Director Melina León

A Thief’s Daughter (Spain), Director Belén Funes

Workforce (Mexico), Director David Zonana (U.S. Premiere)

TRUE STORIES

Non-fiction filmmaking at its most urgent and illuminating.

Advocate (Israel/Canada/Switzerland), Director Rachel Leah Jones, Philippe Bellaiche

Ara Malikian. A Life Among Strings (Spain), Director Nata Moreno (U.S. Premiere)

The Australian Dream (Australia), Director Daniel Gordon

Billie (UK), Director James Erskine

The Capote Tapes (UK), Director Ebs Burnough

Coup 53 (UK/USA/Iran), Director Taghi Amirani

David Foster: Off the Record (Canada), Director Barry Avrich (U.S. Premiere)

The Dog Doc (USA), Director Cindy Meehl

The Donut Dollies (USA/Vietnam), Director Norman Anderson

Forman vs. Forman (Czech Republic/France), Director Helena Třeštíková, Jakub Hejna

Free Color (USA/Venezuela/France), Director Alberto Arvelo (World Premiere)

I Am Not Alone (Armenia), Director Garin Hovannisian

The Kingmaker (USA), Director Lauren Greenfield

Leftover Women (Israel), Director Shosh Shlam, Hilla Medalia

Maxima (USA/Peru), Director Claudia Sparrow

The New Bauhaus (USA), Director Alysa Nahmias

Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and The Band (Canada), Director Daniel Roher

Our Time Machine (China/USA), Director Yang Sun, S. Leo Chiang

Paris Stalingrad (France), Director Hind Meddeb, Thim Naccache

Red Penguins (USA/Russia), Director Gabe Polsky

Rewind (USA), Director Sasha Joseph Neulinger

Romantic Comedy (UK), Director Elizabeth Sankey

Searching for Mr. Rugoff (USA) Director Ira Deutchman

The Seer and the Unseen (Iceland/USA), Director Sara Dosa

Stevenson – Lost and Found (USA/France/Germany/New Zealand), Director Sally Williams

Talking About Trees (France/Sudan/Germany/Chad/Qatar), Director Suhaib Gasmelbari

This Is Not a Movie (Canada/Germany), Director Yung Chang

We Are the Radical Monarchs (USA), Director Linda Goldstein Knowlton

Zero Impunity (Luxembourg/France), Director Nicolas Blies, Stéphane Hueber-Blies (U.S. Premiere)

QUEER CINEMA TODAY & THE GAYLA

Poignant, heartfelt and insightful stories from the LGBTQ community.

Born to Be (USA), Director Tania Cypriano

Changing the Game (USA), Director Michael Barnett

GAYLA Screening – Gay Chorus Deep South (USA), Director David Charles Rodrigues

Lingua Franca (USA/Philippines), Director Isabel Sandoval

Moffie (South Africa), Director Oliver Hermanus (North American Premiere)

Oliver Sacks: His Own Life (USA/UK), Director Ric Burns

GAYLA Screening – Portrait Of A Lady On Fire (France), Director Céline Sciamma

Second Star on the Right (Colombia), Director Ruth Caudeli

Sequin in a Blue Room (Australia), Director Samuel Van Grinsven

Stage Mother (USA), Director Thom Fitzgerald (World Premiere)

Straight Up (USA), Director James Sweeney

Two of Us (France/Luxembourg/Belgium), Director Filippo Meneghetti (U.S. Premiere)

WORLD CINEMA NOW

Travel the world without leaving your seat.

14 Days, 12 Nights (Canada), Director Jean-Philippe Duval (U.S. Premiere)

37 Seconds (Japan), Director HIKARI

Adventures of a Mathematician (Germany/Poland), Director Thorsten Klein (International Premiere)

And the Birds Rained Down (Canada), Director Louise Archambault (U.S. Premiere)

The Artist’s Wife (USA), Director Tom Dolby

Babyteeth (Australia/USA), Director Shannon Murphy

Bacurau (Brazil/France), Director Kleber Mendonça Filho, Juliano Dornelles

Baghdad in My Shadow (Switzerland/Germany/UK), Director Samir

Balloon (China), Director Pema Tseden

The Barefoot Emperor (Belgium/Netherlands/Croatia/Bulgaria), Director Jessica Woodworth, Peter Brosen (U.S. Premiere)

Bellbird (New Zealand), Director Hamish Bennett

The Burnt Orange Heresy (UK/Italy), Director Giuseppe Capotondi (U.S. Premiere)

Certified Mail (Egypt), Director Hisham Saqr (U.S. Premiere)

Clemency (USA), Director Chinonye Chukwu

The County (Iceland/Denmark/Germany/France), Director Grímur Hákonarson

Disclosure (Australia/UK), Director Michael Bentham (World Premiere)

Dogs Don’t Wear Pants (Finland/Latvia), Director J-P Valkeapää

Douze Points (Israel/France), Director Daniel Syrkin (International Premiere)

Easy Land (Canada), Director Sanja Zivkovic (International Premiere)

Echo (Iceland/France/Switzerland), Director Rúnar Rúnarsson (U.S. Premiere)

The Elder One (India), Director Geetu Mohandas (U.S. Premiere)

Extracurricular (Croatia), Director Ivan-Goran Vitez

Forgiveness (Israel), Director Guy Amir, Hanan Savyon

A Girl Missing (Japan/France), Director Kôji Fukada

Greed (UK), Director Michael Winterbottom (U.S. Premiere)

Hope (Norway/Sweden), Director Maria Sødahl (U.S. Premiere)

The Humorist (Russia/Latvia/Czech Republic), Director Michael Idov

The Innocence (Spain), Director Lucia Alemany (North American Premiere)

Judy & Punch (Australia), Director Mirrah Foulkes

Litigante (France/Colombia), Director Franco Lolli

Lucky Grandma (USA), Director Sasie Sealy

Made in Bangladesh (France/Bangladesh/Denmark/Portugal), Director Rubaiyat Hossain

Mafia Inc. (Canada), Director Daniel Grou (North American Premiere)

Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears (Australia/Morocco), Director Tony Tilse (World Premiere)

Oleg (Latvia/Belgium/Lithuania/France), Director Juris Kursietis

Ordinary Love (UK/Ireland), Director Lisa Barros D’Sa, Glenn Leyburn (U.S. Premiere)

The Orphanage (Denmark/Germany/France/Luxembourg/Afghanistan), Director Shahrbanoo Sadat

Our Lady of the Nile (France/Belgium), Director Atiq Rahimi (U.S. Premiere)

Out of Tune (Denmark), Director Frederikke Aspöck

Pelican Blood (Germany), Director Katrin Gebbe

The Perfect Patient (Sweden), Director Mikael Håfström (International Premiere)

Proxima (France/Germany), Director Alice Winocour

The Rest of Us (Canada), Director Aisling Chin-Yee (U.S. Premiere)

Rounds (Bulgaria/Serbia), Director Stephan Komandarev (U.S. Premiere)

The Song of Names (Canada), Director François Girard

South Mountain (USA), Director Hilary Brougher

The Spy (Norway), Director Jens Jonsson (U.S. Premiere)

Standing Up, Falling Down (USA), Director Matt Ratner

A Sun (Taiwan), Director Chung Mong-Hong (U.S. Premiere)

The Swallows Of Kabul (France/Switzerland), Director Zabou Breitman, Eléa Gobbé-Mévellec

Synchronic (USA), Director Aaron Moorhead, Justin Benson

Three Summers (Brazil/France), Director Sandra Kogut

The Vast of Night (USA), Director Andrew Patterson

Wet Season (Singapore/Taiwan), Director Anthony Chen (U.S. Premiere)

The Wild Goose Lake (China/France), Director Diao Yinan

You Tell Me (Germany), Director Michael Fetter Nathansky (International Premiere)

You Will Die At Twenty (Sudan/France/Egypt/Germany/Norway/Qatar), Director Amjad Abu Alala (U.S. Premiere)

Additional programming

Three films have been selected as part of the Local Spotlight program highlighting films from the Coachella Valley.

The 11th Green (USA), Director Christopher Munch (World Premiere)

House of Cardin (USA/France), Director P David Ebersole, Todd Hughes

Iconicity (USA), Director Leo Zahn (World Premiere)

The Dinner & A Movie section includes a dinner followed by the film’s screening.

La Dolce Vita (Italy), Director Federico Fellini

Nothing Fancy: Diana Kennedy (USA/Mexico), Director Elizabeth Carroll

Stage: The Culinary Internship (Canada), Director Abigail Ainsworth

On Sunday, January 5, the festival will host a VFX panel with Weta Digital, the studio known for its culture of creativity and innovation, that has created some of the most memorable characters and worlds of the last twenty-five years. Come hear their creative leaders talk about some of this year’s most talked about digital characters from Alita: Battle Angel, Gemini Man, and Avengers: Endgame. Panelists to include Mike Cozens (Animation Supervisor, Gemini Man), Paul Story (Animation Supervisor, Alita: Battle Angel) and Matt Aiken (VFX Supervisor, Avengers: Endgame).

On Monday, January 6, the festival will also host a panel with the shortlisted filmmakers vying for Academy gold in the Best International Feature Film category.

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