BIFF @ the Triplex (Saturday)
June 4 @ 9:00 am - 9:00 pm
The Berkshire International Film Festival returns this weekend, June 2 to 5, screening independent feature, documentary, short and family films on big screens across the county, with panel discussions and events focusing on filmmakers and artists from both sides of the camera.
Films will screen at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, the Triplex in Great Barrington (on Friday, Saturday and Sunday) and the Tanglewood Learning Institute in Lenox. They also have virtual films available for screening at home.
Here are the films coming to the Tripex on Saturday, June 4.
Films on Saturday
Farha — 9 a.m.
Fourteen-year-old Farha dreams of attending school in the city with her best friend Farida, but she knows that, as the daughter of the mukhtar (the head of the village, played by Ashraf Barhom), she is in for an uphill battle against tradition. Girls Farha’s age are expected to marry.
It’s 1948, and British control over Palestine is coming to an end. What Farha and her father do not yet know is that forced displacements are already happening across the region. When Israeli bombs reach their village, Farha’s father locks her in the cellar of their home, promising to return as soon as he can. While Farha waits and watches through the cracks, the village she was so excited to leave is transformed to ruin, threatening an end to the future she had planned.
Cadejo Blanco — 9:30 a.m.
Sarita goes out partying one night at the insistence of her rebellious, free-spirited sister, Bea. Though more modest and unassuming than Bea, Sarita dances the night away, heading home alone when the party drags on too late. The next morning, after calling friends and neighbors, Sarita begins to panic when she realizes that Bea never made it home.
With no help from the authorities and convinced that Bea’s disappearance has something to do with Andrés, her sister’s dangerous ex, Sarita finds a way to befriend him and infiltrate his gang. With an unwavering determination to uncover the truth about what happened, Sarita becomes increasingly involved with Andrés and the ruthless, violent world of his gang, all the while questioning whether she’s cut out for the dangerous lifestyle.
Praised for its “gritty authenticity” (Screen International) and cast with almost entirely non-professional actors, Cadejo Blanco is an intense thriller in the vain of Sin Nombre, Miss Bala and Maria Full of Grace. Justin Lerner crafts a complex character study set against Guatemala City’s youth gang culture.
Cirque Du Cambodia — 10 a.m.
Cirque du Cambodia follows the journey of two youths who live out every child’s fantasy – to run away from home and join the circus. But not just any circus – they dream of taking the stage with Cirque du Soleil, the largest theatrical company in the world. Their home, a poor village in the ancient, faraway Kingdom of Cambodia, makes their quest even more extraordinary….
Mama Bear — noon
Did you know there are more than 32,000 mothers in America, many from conservative, Christian backgrounds, who fully accept their LGBTQ+ children? They call themselves “mama bears” because while their love is warm and fuzzy, they fight ferociously to make the world kinder and safer for all LGBTQ+ people. Mama Bears explores this growing movement through the lives of three diverse mothers and their LGBT+ offspring, directed by Daresha Kyi (CHAVELA).
The Falconer — 1 p.m.
Inspired by true events, two best friends, Tariq, an Omani teenager and Cai, a privileged Westerner, conspire to steal animals from the zoo and sell them on the black market to raise money for Tariq’s sister’s divorce from an abusive marriage. They are forced to wrestle with morally complex choices that reveal the vast distance between their worlds.
The Fire That Took Her — 3 p.m.
Based on the real story of Judy Malinowski, mother of two, the film tells the story of her life and her death — when she was 31, she was doused in petrol and set on fire by her crazed ex-boyfriend — and she became the first woman to testify from beyond the grave at the trial for her own murder. In a story that lives at the intersection of true crime and #MeToo, the Fire that Took Her goes deep inside a landmark case to ask a timely question: How much must women suffer in order to be believed?
This Is Where I Meet You — 3:30 p.m.
Actress Charlotte is struggling with her craft and even more with herself. She has messed up yet another audition and even her self-written apple tree monologue seems to be working against her. Frustrated by the realities of an artistic career and her fear of failing, Charlotte escapes on a camping trip to sunny Croatia with her boyfriend Georg.
But the trip’s dynamic changes when their plans of a fun-filled couples vacation misfire: While Georg spends his time at a music festival in the hope of scoring a DJ gig, Charlotte is left stranded in the middle of nowhere. She embarks on a journey of her own, encountering happy campers Benno, a self-proclaimed shaman, and mysterious dropout Tami, to whom Charlotte feels an attraction. Both of them quickly become close companions on Charlotte’s journey of self-discovery.
Omara — 4 p.m.
At the age of 89, Cuba’s national treasure, Afro-Cuban music icon Omara Portuondo defies age-ist expectations and tours the world. For eight decades Omara was a trailblazer – a single mother surviving racism, misogyny, and revolution. The songs she sings convey the feelings and the experiences that defined her life as a trailblazer who has inspired generations of women of color to follow in her footsteps.
As Prescribed — 6 p.m.
Xanax, Klonopin, Valium, Ativan – all belong to a class of drugs known as benzodiazepines (benzos). News and entertainment media portray them in terms of addiction and abuse or as innocuous medications that relax nerves. As Prescribed documents a strikingly different narrative, following eye-opening stories of invisible illness and disability.
Boston-based survivor Geraldine Burns leads a grassroots army of “good patients” that help other victims and advocate tirelessly for benzodiazepine harm awareness. But resistance is strong. Geraldine and her cohorts are opposed by powerful forces that include pharmaceutical giants and a medical culture that has denied the problem for decades.
Escape From Mogadishu — 6:30 p.m.
In 1991 war-torn Somalia the personnel and the families of both the South Korean and the North Korean embassies have the same goal: to escape from Mogadishu.
Resurrection — 7 p.m.
Margaret’s life is in order. She is capable, disciplined, and successful. Soon, her teenage daughter, who Margaret raised by herself, will be going off to a fine university, just as Margaret had intended. Everything is under control. That is, until David returns, carrying with him the horrors of Margaret’s past.
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