Friday, Nov. 2
Divide and Conquer: The Story of Roger Ailes - 8:15 – 10:15 p.m.
Before #MeToo became the mass movement it is today, Roger Ailes, the founder of Fox News, was one of the first prominent media moguls to resign after accusations of sexual assault materialized. A long-time influencer of Republican politics, Ailes built a successful conservative news empire and contributed to the rise of media figures like Megyn Kelly, Sean Hannity, and Bill O'Reilly, all while perpetrating egregious acts against women in the workplace. Through the use of archival footage and interviews with people from all phases of Ailes' life, the documentary maps the rise and fall of Ailes' illustrious career. Discussion with director Alexis Bloom, moderated by Siva Vaidhyanathan (U.Va.)
Saturday, Nov. 3
The Great Buster - 11:00 a.m. - 1:15 p.m.
In the wake of the reissuing of Buster Keaton's iconic silent features, noted film director Peter Bogdanovich provides a fresh perspective on the comedic brilliance Keaton delighted audiences with onscreen for so many years. This loving portrait offers a multi-dimensional understanding of Keaton as both a boisterous entertainer and polished filmmaker. Using academic scholars and figures intimately familiar with Keaton's work, including Dick Van Dyke, the film offers a detailed account of Keaton's journey to comedic success, though careful not to neglect the many personal demons and professional missteps he encountered along the way. Discussion with director Peter Bogdanovich, moderated by Ben Mankiewicz (TCM)
Free Solo – 2:15 – 4:15 p.m.
Free-solo climber Alex Honnold is determined to achieve his lifelong dream: climbing the 3,200-foot El Capitan in Yosemite National Park. Challenging himself to reach the top of the world's most famous rock without rope, Honnold tests his body and beliefs on a quest to triumph over the impossible. When Honnold falls in love, his focus is threatened, opening the way to injury and setbacks. The intimate portrait of the climber captures deeply human moments that break apart his armor of invincibility. Revealing the personal toll of excellence, Honnold's death-defying climb sets the ultimate standard for the annals of human achievement. Introduction by Bill Wylie (UVA)
An Acceptable Loss – 5:30 – 7:45 p.m.
When former U.S. security advisor Elizabeth "Libby" Lamm leaves politics to pursue a university teaching position, damaging details of her past emerge jeopardizing her professional future. Amid scandal, U.S. President Rachel Burke and Chief of Staff Adrian pressure Libby to remain loyal to their administration. Libby's path to redemption is complicated by a young, mysterious student stalking her. Knowledge of Rachel's cunning tactics and Adrian's unyielding allegiance to the presidency force Libby to question the lengths to which her former associates are willing to go to maintain their political status. Discussion with writer-director Joe Chappelle, producer Colleen Griffen, and Todd Sechser (U.Va.), moderated by Barbara Perry (Miller Center)
Karenina & I – 8:30 – 10:30 p.m.
When Norwegian actor Gørild Mauseth receives an offer from the Primorsky Regional Drama Theater in Russia to play Anna Karenina, she agrees, and the role becomes an all-consuming venture. To reach the theater in Vladivostok, she travels along the Trans-Siberian Railway, learning Russian and trying to understand why Tolstoy (Liam Neeson) wrote his acclaimed novel Anna Karenina. As she travels through Russia, Mauseth can feel herself slowly becoming Anna, and begins to hear Tolstoy's voice in her head. Bringing together documentary and narrative elements, Mauseth works to break free from her character by confronting her traumatic past. Discussion with director Tommaso Mottola and actor Gørild Mauseth
Sunday, Nov. 4
God Bless You, Mr. Vonnegut - 12:00 - 1:15 p.m.
In a career spanning over 50 years, author Kurt Vonnegut became an icon of American literature, creating a world within his books that was beloved by readers across the globe. Though Vonnegut's books created a deep intimacy between the author and his fans, many aspects of his personal life remained hidden behind his fictional works. Through the eyes of his most beloved friends, God Bless You, Mr. Vonnegut offers an honest inside look into the life of one of America's most revered authors. Vonnegut's works of fiction bore a closer resemblance to Vonnegut's life than many might assume.
Coby - 2:00 – 3:20 p.m.
Suzanna, 23, disrupts the delicate ecosystem of her small Midwestern town when she comes out as transgender. Much to the community's discomfort, Suzanna chooses to undergo a female-to-male transition and takes the name of Coby. In order to fully support and accommodate the needs of their son, Coby's family must question their entire belief system. Coby's half-brother and filmmaker, Christian Sonderegger, documents Coby's testosterone treatment as well as their family's response. Sonderegger seeks to show the adjustment process faced by the entire family as Coby's transition progresses.
Sunset – 4:15 – 6:50 p.m.
On the brink of World War I, Irisz Leiter arrives in Budapest desperately looking for work in the textile company her late parents once owned. After being rejected by the new owner, Irisz must fend for herself in the bustling city. During a brief stay in a local boarding house, she learns of her previously undiscovered brother. In an effort to meet this mysterious and potentially dangerous new sibling, she begins her perilous search across the Hungarian capital. Encountering outlaws, royalty, and everything in-between, Irisz must prove her determination and bravery to find the answers she so urgently seeks. This film was selected as Hungary's entry for Best Foreign Language Film at the 91st Academy Awards.
Rodents of Unusual Size – 7:45 – 9:15 p.m.
Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans in 2005, putting 80% of the city underwater. But the coastal wetlands region just south of the city now faces its latest threat: hordes of monstrous 20-pound rodents known as "nutria." Louisiana fisherman Thomas Gonzales and his community of Delacroix Islanders must fight the invasion of these rodents, whose voracious appetites accelerate coastal erosion and make the area even more vulnerable to hurricanes. Through the stories of fishermen, musicians, and fashion designers, this documentary explores environmental concerns, the loss of homeland, and the resilience of the human spirit.
A full festival program is available online now. Please note, dates and times of showings may be subject to change. Tickets will be required for showings on campus.
We look forward to seeing you at the festival!