Palm Springs Film Festival Sets Lineup; ‘An Almost Ordinary Summer’ & ‘Military Wives’ Are Opening- And Closing-Night Movies


One hundred eighty-eight films films from 81 countries including 51 premieres highlight the lineup for the 31st annual Palm Springs International Film Festival, which kicks off January 2 with a star-studded gala that has become a must-stop during awards season for Oscar hopefuls. The festival, which runs through January 13, also is known for showcasing a large number of submissions in the Motion Picture Academy’s International Film (formerly Foreign Language) competition and will feature 51 of those entries.

The opening-night film on January 3 is the Italian farce An Almost Ordinary Summer, while the closer is director Peter Cattaneo’s heartwarming dramedy Military Wives in which Kristin Scott Thomas, Sharon Horgan and Jason Flemyng lead a superb ensemble cast. The film had its world premiere at September’s Toronto International Film Festival and became an instant crowd-pleaser. Bleecker Street releases it in 2020.

Among the previously announced honorees at the January 2 gala are Antonio Banderas, Renee Zellweger, Charlize Theron, Laura Dern, Zack Gottsagen, Jennifer Lopez and Martin Scorsese.

Here is the lineup for the complete festival as announced this morning by new PSIFF Artistic Director Lili Rodriguez.

Military Wives
Military Wives TIFF


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
JoJo Rabbit (USA) with Caging Skies author Christine Leunens
Motherless Brooklyn (USA) with author Jonathan Lethem and
writer/director/producer/actor Edward Norton


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)

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

New films, classic auteurs.

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

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)

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
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)

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)

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
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-
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 for the festival includes:

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

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