This week has been hot, hot, hot, but what fun we’ve had at the Maine International Film Festival (MIFF). As always, when so many films are offered, there are strong movies and not-so-strong movies. That’s just the way it goes. Naturally, the assessment of what’s good and what’s not is clearly a matter of taste, and as my friend Joel Johnson has pointed out, every film at MIFF has its advocate.
While movies are the point of the festival, a nice bonus is the old friends we see—some of them only once a year. With those friends, often over pizza and beer and fries, we talk and argue about the movies we’ve seen. These conversations add zest to an already lively event.
I’ll be seeing one more movie tomorrow night, but my two favorite movies so far are Fruitvale Station and Tu Seras Mon Fils. It’s my guess that Fruitvale Station will receive multiple Academy-Award nominations, and it will be returning to Railroad Square sometime after the festival. Both movies are dark and powerful and beautifully acted. (I’ve provided links to both of them for more detailed descriptions.)
MIFF 2013 has been very well attended, and as I watched people hurry to get a seat or stand in line for popcorn or talk in groups after a movie, I was reminded, yet again, of how much Railroad Square Cinema and MIFF, both now a part of the Maine Film Center, bring not only to Waterville but also to central Maine. Over the coming year, Clif and I will make every effort to support Railroad Square and Maine Film Center. We live on a modest budget, but there are some things worth spending money on, and Railroad Square and MIFF certainly fall into this category.
Scenes from this year’s MIFF: