Residue, directed by Merawi Gerima
Residue, directed by Merawi Gerima

The 6th Mammoth Lakes Film Festival (MLFF) which was originally scheduled to take place over the Memorial Day weekend, but postponed amid the COVID-19 pandemic, will take place online from September 16-20, 2020.

The festival announced the line-up of feature film programming and in-competition selections that will screen online, which includes the World Premiere of Desire Path, directed by Marjorie Conrad.

The festival will open on September 16 with the West Coast Premiere of Residue, directed by Merawi Gerima. The film was recently acquired by Ava DuVernay’s ARRAY and will be released on Netflix.

In addition to the online screenings, the festival will also be implementing a variety of virtual and interactive programming including live filmmaker Q&As, industry panels, filmmaker meet-ups, and even virtual wine tastings.

“While the delivery of films online will be different than in year’s past, the Mammoth Lakes Film Festival continues its commitment to showcase the work of emerging and innovative filmmakers remains the same,” said Festival Director Shira Dubrovner. “Thanks to the virtues of technology that can host a communal film going experience, we are excited to bring these works into people’s homes and promote the exchange of ideas and storytelling these films evoke.”

Mammoth Lakes Film Festival feature film line-up

Core Competitions

Narrative Features:

Desire Path (USA) – A young woman walks down a desire path next to her house and invites a demonic figure into her life in this vampire film with an elliptical plot, minimal dialogue, and characters that are defenseless against their drives. Directed by Marjorie Conrad. World Premiere

Marlene (Germany) – A restoration specialist moves to Berlin to begin a new life with new friends while still negotiating difficult family issues, and has a hard time setting boundaries with an invasive upstairs neighbor whose behavior becomes increasingly threatening and unpredictable. Directed by Andreas Resch. North American Premiere

Residue (USA) – A young African American filmmaker returns home after many years away to write a script about his childhood, only to find his neighborhood transformed by gentrification and his childhood friends scattered to the wind. Directed by Merawi Gerima. West Coast Premiere

Revolution Launderette (Japan) – A young man dogged by misfortune sets out to beat his existence to its next punchline, together with a young woman who obsesses over a stranger’s old scrapbook, in this jazzy, free-form tumble of wildly imaginative imagery set in Tokyo. Directed by Mark Chua and Lam Li Shuen. North American Premiere

Tapeworm (Canada) – If — as Chaplin said — life is a tragedy when seen in close-up but a comedy in long shot, then this group of nobodies trudging through a woeful existence in dreary Winnipeg is seen in a medium. Directed by Milos Mitrovic. West Coast Premiere

Documentary Features:

Democracy on the Road of Saveh (Iran) – An up-close look at the grotesque political maneuvering in the run-up to council elections in a district outside of Teheran — a humorous take on the challenges posed by democracy in Iran. Directed by Turaj Kalantari. North American Premiere

Feather and Pine (USA) – A poetic, visually stunning portrait of a northern California logging community and a young couple being pulled apart by conflicting ambitions in in the wake of the Great Recession. Directed by Star Rosencrans and Michael James Beck. West Coast Premiere

Pier Kids (USA) – Caught up in the precariousness of survival and self-preservation, homeless queer and trans youth of color hang out at Christopher Street Pier, standing up to homophobia and abuse and forging their own chosen family. Directed by Elegance Bratton.

The Wind. A Documentary Thriller (Poland) – Poland’s Halny wind comes in cycles, every spring and autumn, sometimes turning into a destructive gale that creates a setting for a wild performance of human struggle against the destructive forces of nature. Directed by Michał Bielawski.

“Mojave to Mammoth” Special Screening – Non-Competition

Accidental Climber – Jim Geiger, a retired forest ranger and amateur mountaineer, attempts to become the oldest American and first great grandfather to climb Mt. Everest, but nothing goes as planned. Directed by Steven Oritt.

The festival will also feature a Short Films Program of 29 Narrative Shorts, eight Documentary Shorts, four Animation Shorts, two Episodics and two “Mojave to Mammoth” special presentation Shorts.

MLFF jurors include: Allison Amon (Bullitt), Kimberley Browning (Tribeca Film Festival & Hollywood Shorts), Kate Erbland (Indiewire), Caleb Hammond (MovieMaker Magazine), David Massey (Academy Award-Nominated Filmmaker), Pat Saperstein (Variety), Ania Trzebiatowska (Sundance Film Festival) and Brian Welk (The Wrap). Over $35,000 in cash and prizes will be given out in six categories to this year’s films in competition. Winners will be announced on Sunday, September 20.

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