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Saturday, August 3, 2024
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Woods Hole Film Festival 2015 Narrative Feature Films In Competition


By Esra Saydam, Nisan Dag

Damla is a successful but unhappy Turkish immigrant who lives in New York City with her husband Kevin, planning their lives as imminent parents. During her pregnancy, Damla’s ‘perfect’ life is haunted with her childhood memories from the summer town Karaca in Turkey, where she spent all her summers before she came to New York. Damla misses her first love, Burak, whom she had to leave heartbroken after moving to New York. When Damla finds out that her cousin is selling their house in Karaca, she decides to visit the summer town with Kevin as this is her last chance to reconcile with Burak after eight years. Experiencing a turbulent time in Karaca, Damla and Burak finally start talking again and begin to revisit their past and rekindle their friendship. Damla still feels uneasy because of the confrontation that she owes to Burak. Before Damla can open up to him, her secret unveils during a football game in a heated argument between Burak and Kevin: Damla was pregnant with Burak’s baby and she had an abortion right after she left Turkey. Burak is shaken up with the news. Damla is humiliated and outcast from the community. Kevin moves to a hotel before flying back to the US, asking Damla to sort out things. Damla fights to earn Burak’s forgiveness. Finally, they say a peaceful and friendly ‘goodbye’ to each other. Damla meets her husband in the airport. Damla lies on his lap silently and waits for their flight to New York. Damla and Kevin are onto a new start. Turkey, 2014


By Evangelos Giovanis, George Giovanis

Sitting on the edge of his bed in the early morning with a revolver in his hand, Garvey contemplates his new dark secret. His beloved wife Evelyn coming up the stairs, Garvey quickly hides the gun under the bed and helps her put on a necklace in front of the mirror. Though it’s his 40th anniversary, he runs away from home for a strange day of misadventures until he meets Lauren, a beautiful woman who becomes his muse and angel to help him go home. He returns home ready to tell Evelyn his secret, but finds out she has gone missing at the same time his family starts to receive strange calls from two thugs named Billy and Tommy, who may have kidnapped her. Garvey knows he must live to save his beloved wife and in so doing realizes what life has to offer. USA, 2014 Starring Jayne Seymour and Malcolm McDowell.


By Diego Ongaro

It is deep winter in rural Massachusetts. Bob, a 50 year old logger with a soft spot for golf and gangsta rap, is struggling to make ends meet in a merciless industry. When a rotten investment threatens the family business, Bob begins to heed the instincts of his ever darkening self. Filmed in a verité style on location during the polar vortex of 2014. USA, 2014


By Marty Madden

A reluctant faith healer tries to escape his darkened past working as a ranch hand for a plain-spoken widower and his young daughter.  Over time, he becomes a part of their family and even falls in love with the local girl who helps out at the ranch, giving him hope that he may have finally found a place to call home.  But, his fragile dreams are shattered when his predatory evangelist mother tracks him down, stopping at nothing to get her son and his miraculous gifts back on the revival circuit. USA, 2014


By Tim Bartell

A lonely artist brings a young, drifter woman back to his tiny apartment to live with him. Between his obsessive tendencies and her non-stop drinking, something strange happens. They start to care for each other. USA, 2014


By Ryan Lewis, Michael Maney

John Whitmore wakes to find himself in the midst of a real-life nightmare.  His wife, Anne, disappeared from their bed overnight and a recorded ransom message now remains in her place.  This mysterious recording instructs Whitmore to contact a man named David who will escort John to a cabin deep within the woods, where he will be reunited with Anne – in exchange for his life savings. While riding in David’s rusted RV, Whitmore attempts to piece together the events of the previous evening, but instead, he begins to question the entire situation. Told through fragments of the past that shatter the present, ‘Dusk’ explores the darkest recesses of the mind as John attempts to survive a night of chaos, deceit and paranoia. USA, 2014


By Lindsey Copeland

Five college friends reunite for a concert in Boston. When one of them loses the tickets the group must take on the task of retracing her steps to find the missing tickets, encountering a series of characters along the way. USA, 2014


By Madoka Raine

HAPPY 40th follows Sophia (Yvonne Woods), a woman in a wheelchair, who is celebrating her 40th birthday with her three best friends Ana, Sasha, and Kat (Jenni Blong, Robyn Cohen, and Madoka Raine). Sophia has been in a wheelchair for two years following a car accident she had while driving with her husband Ben (Brian Slaten), and both of her legs are paralyzed. Being in a wheelchair has transformed Sophia from a happy vibrant woman into a woman who is afraid to even leave the house. Ben blames himself for the car accident, and thus takes care of Sophia and every single thing inside and outside of their home.
During the course of the three day celebration, with encouragement from her friends,  Sophia is eventually able to get outside for a bit of fun. She starts to feel a little bit better. Yet suddenly, it is revealed that one friend has deeply betrayed her. Sophia’s life is once again thrown, the birthday celebration is over, and she is forced to face a life-changing decision. USA, 2014


By Maya Forbes


While most fathers spend their days at work, CAM STUART (Mark Ruffalo) is more likely to be found mushroom-hunting, cooking elaborate meals, or working on one of his many half- completed projects. His family’s wealth keeps his family just barely afloat, while Cam struggles to live with manic depression. When Cam has a manic breakdown that lands him in a mental hospital, his wife MAGGIE (Zoe Saldana) and their two young daughters, AMELIA and FAITH, are forced to leave their house in the country and move into a cramped apartment in Cambridge, where Maggie tries to find a decent job, with no luck.

Broke, stressed, and overwhelmed, Maggie applies to business school and is accepted to Columbia University’s MBA program. Seeing this as her chance to build a better life for their daughters, Maggie asks Cam to become the primary caregiver for the girls while she completes her degree in New York. After all, routine is what the doctor ordered and the girls miss their dad. Cam agrees, hoping to rebuild his family. But the two spirited girls are not interested in making things easy for him.

With Maggie away in New York, Cam quickly realizes that he’s in over his head. Over the course of the next 18 months, as Maggie rushes to complete her degree, he learns, through trial and a lot of error, how to take care of his precocious daughters as well as himself. After years of struggling to find his place in the world, Cam may finally have found where he fits in.

Based on a true story, INFINITELY POLAR BEAR is a funny and heartbreaking portrait of the many unexpected ways in which parents and children save each other. Starring Mark Ruffalo, Zoe Saldana, Imogene Wolodarsky, Ashley Aufderheide, Beth Dixon, Keir Dullea. 2014, USA, Special Screening Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics. Not in Competition.

Jack of the Red Hearts

By Janel Grillo

A streetwise teen, and casualty of the flawed foster care system, cons her way into a job by posing as an experience caregiver for a family with an autistic child. At first in over her head, she ends up connecting with her new life in a way she never expected. Just as she has found redemption, her deceitful past catches up with her and she is forced to come to terms with who she really is. 2015, USA


By Khalil Sullins

David and Ryan are trying to harness the power of the human mind… and failing. They’re both broke and struggle to support their families, but spend all of their time in a garage-lab full of stolen equipment, hoping that inventing telepathy will solve all their problems. After they meet Jordan, a smart and seductive new classmate, they make a breakthrough that changes everything. But the bleeding-edge technology opens a Pandora’s box of new dangers, as the team discovers that when they open their minds, there is nowhere to hide their thoughts. Secrets and betrayals boil to the surface, and the technology falls into the wrong hands. David, Ryan, and Jordan suddenly find themselves working for an underground government agency with treacherous plans to implement their technology globally. With no one left to trust, David is forced against his friends in a life-or-death battle over not only the privacy of the human mind, but the future of free will itself. USA, 2014


By Christine Vartoughian

Max McLean is eighteen years old and can’t get out of bed. Since her boyfriend Adam killed himself over a year ago, Max has been using sex, drugs, and parties to ignore the pain until one day she wakes up in a hospital, haven taken a nearly lethal dose of sleeping pills. While being haunted by visions of Adam, Max runs away from home and ventures into the forest with a bizarre but endearing boy named Ish.  USA, 2015


By Jack Newell

Within the walls of the trendiest Chicago restaurants, behind the closed doors of private dinner parties, and on the banks of the Seine in Paris, OPEN TABLES explores true love, love lost and the importance of a good main course. USA, 2015


By Noël Dow Barlow

Brian Gold takes his young daughter, Anna, sledding for the first time—she glides down the hill in pure childish pleasure, slipping farther away from her father. All of a sudden, Brian sees an enormous wolf-like animal charge at her. He freezes in panic. The dog attacks. The police say Brian can’t press charges because the dog was on a (very long) chain leash. Brian’s brother-in-law, Tom Rourke, suggests he just kill the dog. Brian refuses, claiming he will be the first suspect. Rourke offers to do it himself. Unable to resist the chance for revenge, Brian accepts, unknowingly triggering a chain-reaction of events that lead to a tragic event and Brian’s own psychological unraveling. Based on an original story by Tobias Wolff. USA, 2014


By Ann-Marie Schmidt, Brian Schmidt

This film is not for over-protective parents,” warns this Tim Burton-esque, absurd children’s comedy from first-time writer-directors, husband-wife team Ann-Marie Schmidt and Brian Schmidt. When Jojo and his sister Avila are left to their own devices after a car accident injures their mother, they must survive in the woods on their own. Among the travails and harrowing experiences is a deranged hobo, ravaging wolves, abandoned couches, and dirty diapers. But don’t fret for the little ones; they have a sharp pocketknife at the ready. The creative team behind this unique film refer to it as a “children’s film” and they couldn’t be more correct. THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF JOJO (AND HIS ANNOYING SISTER AVILA) is pretty much every daydream every seven-year-old boy ever had. Ever. There’s adventure, danger, comedy, and Skittles. If you’re a parent, this film may make you squirm. But if you’re a child or a child at heart, Jojo and Avila will take you on an incredible journey. USA, 2014


By Anna Muylaert

THE SECOND MOTHER centers around Val, a hard-working live-in housekeeper in modern day Sao Paulo. Val is perfectly content to take care of every one of her wealthy employer’s needs, from cooking and cleaning to being a surrogate mother to their teenage son, who she has raised since he was a toddler. But, when Val’s estranged daughter Jessica suddenly shows up, the unspoken but intrinsic class barriers that exist within the home are thrown into disarray. Jessica is smart, confident and ambitious and refuses to accept the upstairs/downstairs dynamic, testing relationships and loyalties and forcing everyone to reconsider what family really means. Brazil, 2015. Not in Competition.


By Lukas Huffman

Three twenty-something brothers are sent on a wilderness adventure designed as the last will and testament of their late and eccentric parents. In order to gain their inheritance, the three must all complete the trek together. Along the way, Daniel (the eldest, a father and business man), Tyler (the middle son, aimless and sensitive), and Jordan (the youngest brother, sweet and naive) encounter their eccentric stoner guide, Carter Cooper Jr., who seems to heighten the tension on an already tenuous trip. Canada, 2014


By Frank Hall Green

Mackenzie, a troubled but daring teenage girl, is sent by her struggling mother to live with her uncle in Juneau, Alaska. Although Uncle seems like a supportive caretaker and friend, the relationship turns and Mackenzie is forced to run. Trying to make her way back to Seattle alone to find her absent mother, Mackenzie only winds up deeper in the Alaskan interior. Lost and with no one else to turn to, she shadows a loner backpacker, Bartlett, an unlikely father figure with scars of his own. Together, they cross the wilderness and discover sanctuary in the last frontier. USA, 2014