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American Film Festival
September 18-29
Formula Kino Horizon Formula Kino Horizon

AmFestAmerican Film Festival in Moscow was initiated in 2006 by a group of Americans and Russians in order to showcase new and classic American films, which otherwise would not be widely distributed in Russia. American Film Festival 2013 features 23 films by famous and critically acclaimed directors. The program of 2013 will present interesting male and female roles of outstanding artists and of course debutantes. The viewers will see original experiments, as well as proven authors' statements. The festival program will include as feature films as documentary pictures and short movies. The guests of the AmFest will be an American writer-director Whit Stillman, who is known for his sly depictions of the "urban haute bourgeoisie", and director Lotfy Nathan. There are such movies in festival retrospective Stillman's program as 1990th Metropolitan, which earned him a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay, Barcelona, The Last Days of Disco, and Damsels in Distress. The films will be shown in English with Russian subtitles.

Festival Feature Films

Frances Ha. Comedy / Drama. USA 2012, 86 min. Directed by Noah Baumbach. Starring: Greta Gerwig, Mickey Sumner, Adam Driver, Michael Esper, Michael Zegen. Awards and festivals: Toronto International Film Festival - participation, Telluride International Film Festival - participation, New York International Film Festival - participation, Edinbourgh International Film Festival - participation. Frances lives in New York, but she doesn't really have an apartment. Frances is an apprentice for a dance company, but she's not really a dancer. Frances has a best friend named Sophie, but they aren't really speaking anymore. Frances throws herself headlong into her dreams, even as their possible reality dwindles. Frances wants so much more than she has but lives her life with unaccountable joy and lightness.

Nebraska. Drama. USA 2013, 110 min. Directed by Alexander Payne. Starring: Bruce Dern, Will Forte, June Squibb, Bob Odenkirk, Stacy Keach. Awards and festivals: Cannes Film Festival - Best Actor. An aging, booze-addled father makes the trip from Montana to Nebraska with his estranged son in order to claim a million dollar Mega Sweepstakes Marketing prize.

Gravity. Drama / Sci-fi. USA, UK 2013, 91 min. Directed by Alfonso Cuarón. Starring: Sandra Bullock, George Clooney, Eric Michels, Basher Savage. A medical engineer and an astronaut work together to survive after an accident leaves them adrift in space.

Upstream Color. Drama / Sci-fi. USA 2013, 96 min. Directed by Shane Carruth. Starring: Amy Seimetz, Shane Carruth, Andrew Sensenig, Thiago Martins, Kathy Carruth. Awards and festivals: Sundance Film Festival - Sound Design, Berlinale - Panorama programme. A man and woman are drawn together, entangled in the life cycle of an ageless organism. Identity becomes an illusion as they struggle to assemble the loose fragments of wrecked lives.

Austenland. Comedy / Romance. UK, USA 2013, 97 min. Directed by Jerusha Hess. Starring: Keri Russell, JJ Feild, Jennifer Coolidge, Bret McKenzie, Georgia King. Awards and festivals: Sundance Film Festival - participation. Obsessed with the BBC production of "Pride and Prejudice", a woman travels to a Jane Austen theme park in search for her perfect gentleman.

AmFestIt Felt Like Love. Drama. USA 2013, 82 min. Directed by Eliza Hittman. Starring: Jesse Cordasco, Richie Folio, Andrew McCord, Gina Piersanti, Case Prime. Awards and festivals: Nashville Film Festival - Best Actress, Sundance Film Festival - NEXT programme, Rotterdam International Film Festival - participation, Göteborg International Film Festival - participation. During an uneventful summer in Brooklyn, lonely Lila develops an unhealthy fixation on an older thug. Deluded and awkward in her romantic pursuit, she soon finds herself in a dangerously vulnerable situation. Director's statement: "With "It Felt Like Love", I wanted to show outtakes from childhood: the lonely moments, the surges of false confidence, and small humiliating details that are often buried in our memories."

Kiss of the Damned. Horror. USA 2012, 97 min. Directed by Xan Cassavetes. Starring: Joséphine de La Baume, Milo Ventimiglia, Roxane Mesquida, Anna Mouglalis, Michael Rapaport. Awards and festivals: Venice Film Festival - International Film Critics' Week, SXSW - participation. The vampire Djuna resists the advances of Paolo, but soon gives in to their passion. When her trouble-making sister unexpectedly comes to visit, Djuna's love is threatened, and the whole vampire community becomes endangered.

Prince Avalanche. Comedy / Drama. USA 2013, 94 min. Directed by David Gordon Green. Starring: Paul Rudd, Emile Hirsch, Lance LeGault, Joyce Payne, Gina Grande. Awards and festivals: Berlin International Film Festival - Best Director. Two highway road workers spend the summer of 1988 away from their city lives. The isolated landscape becomes a place of misadventure as the men find themselves at odds with each other and the women they left behind.

White Reindeer. Comedy. USA 2013, 82 min. Directed by Zach Clark. Starring: Anna Margaret Hollyman, Laura Lemar-Goldsborough, Lydia Hyslop, Joe Swanberg, Chris Doubek. Awards and festivals: SXSW - participation. After an unexpected tragedy, Suzanne struggles to put her life back together during a sad, strange Christmastime in suburban Virginia.

In a World... Comedy. USA 2013, 93 min. Directed by Lake Bell. Starring: Lake Bell, Demetri Martin, Fred Melamed, Eva Longoria, Ken Marino. Awards and festivals: Sundance Film Festival - Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award. An underachieving vocal coach is motivated by her father, the king of movie-trailer voice-overs, to pursue her aspirations of becoming a voiceover star. Amidst pride, sexism and family dysfunction, she sets out to change the voice of a generation.

Metropolitan. Comedy / Drama / Romance. USA 1990, 98 min. Directed by Whit Stillman. Starring: Carolyn Farina, Edward Clements, Chris Eigeman, Taylor Nichols, Allison Parisi. Awards and festivals: Academy Awards, USA - nominated for Oscar Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen; Sundance Film Festival - participation, Independent Spirit Awards - Best First Feature, Locarno International Film Festival - Silver Leopard, National Board of Review, USA - NBR Award. A group of young upper-class Manhattanites are blithely passing through the gala debutante season, when an unusual outsider joins them and stirs them up.

AmFestBlue Jasmine. Comedy / Drama. USA 2013, 98 min. Directed by Woody Allen. Starring: Cate Blanchett, Alec Baldwin, Sally Hawkins, Peter Sarsgaard, Tammy Blanchard. A life crisis causes a vapid and narcissistic socialite to head to San Francisco, where she tries to reconnect with her sister.

Barcelona. Comedy / Drama / Romance. USA 1994, 101 min. Directed by Whit Stillman. Starring: Taylor Nichols, Chris Eigeman, Tushka Bergen, Mira Sorvino, Pep Munné. Awards and festivals: Independent Spirit Awards - Best Cinematography. Ted, a stuffy white guy from Illinois working in sales for the Barcelona office of a US corporation, is paid an unexpected visit by his somewhat less stuffy cousin Fred, who is an officer in the US Navy. Over the next few months, both their lives are irrevocably altered by the events which follow Fred's arrival, events which are the trivial stuff of a comedy of manners at first but which gradually grow increasingly dramatic.

The Last Days of Disco. Comedy / Drama / Music. USA 1998, 113 min. Directed by Whit Stillman. Starring: Chloë Sevigny, Kate Beckinsale, Chris Eigeman, Mackenzie Astin, Matt Keeslar. Awards and festivals: London Critics Circle Film Awards - British Supporting Actress of the Year, ALMA Awards - Outstanding Performance of a Song for a Feature Film. Story of two female Manhattan book editors fresh out of college, both finding love and themselves while frequenting the local disco.

Computer Chess. Comedy. USA 2013, 82 min. Directed by Andrew Bujalski. Starring: Kriss Schludermann, Tom Fletcher, Wiley Wiggins, Patrick Riester, Kevin Bewersdorf. Awards and festivals: Sundance Film Festival - Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film Prize, Berlinale - Forum programme. A 1980s-set story centered around a man vs. machine chess tournament.

The Canyons. Drama / Thriller. USA 2013, 99 min. Directed by Paul Schrader. Starring: Lindsay Lohan, James Deen, Nolan Gerard Funk, Amanda Brooks, Gus Van Sant. When Christian, an LA trust-fund kid with casual ties to Hollywood, learns of a secret affair between Tara and the lead of his film project, Ryan, he spirals out of control, and his cruel mind games escalate into an act of bloody violence.

Damsels in Distress. Comedy / Drama / Romance. USA 2011, 99 min. Directed by Whit Stillman. Starring: Greta Gerwig, Adam Brody, Analeigh Tipton, Megalyn Echikunwoke, Carrie MacLemore. Awards and festivals: Dublin International Film Festival - Best Actress. A trio of girls set out to change the male-dominated environment of the Seven Oaks college campus, and to rescue their fellow students from depression, grunge and low standards of every kind.

Don Jon. Comedy. USA 2013, 90 min. Directed by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore, Tony Danza, Glenne Headly. A New Jersey guy dedicated to his family, friends, and church, develops unrealistic expectations from watching porn and works to find happiness and intimacy with his potential true love.

Ain't Them Bodies Saints. Drama. USA 2013, 105 min. Directed by David Lowery. Starring: Rooney Mara, Casey Affleck, Ben Foster, Keith Carradine, Kennadie Smith. Awards and festivals: Palm Springs International Film Festival - Directors to Watch, Sundance Film Festival - Cinematography Award, Indian Paintbrush Producer's Award, Cannes Film Festival - International Critics' Week section. The tale of an outlaw who escapes from prison and sets out across the Texas hills to reunite with his wife and the daughter he has never met.

Documentary Films

12 O'Clock Boys. Documentary. USA 2013, 76 min. Directed by Lotfy Nathan. Starring: Coco, Pug, Steven. Awards and festivals: SXSW Festival - participation, Hot Docs - HBO Documentary Films Emerging Artist Award. Pug, a young boy growing up on a combative West Baltimore block, finds solace in a group of illegal dirt bike riders known as The 12 O'Clock Boys.

Pandora's Promise. Documentary. USA 2013, 90 min. Directed by Robert Stone. Starring: Stewart Brand, Gwyneth Cravens, Mark Lynas, Richard Rhodes, Michael Shellenberger. Awards and festivals: Sheffield Doc/Fest - Sheffield Green Award. A feature-length documentary about the history and future of nuclear power. The film explores how and why mankind's most feared and controversial technological discovery is now passionately embraced by many of those who once led the charge against it. Operating as history, cultural meditation and contemporary exploration, Pandora's Promise aims to inspire a serious and realistic debate over what is without question the most important question of our time: how do we continue to power modern civilization without destroying it?

AmFestDetropia. Documentary. USA 2012, 91 min. Directed by Heidi Ewing, Rachel Grady. Starring: Noah Stewart, Rachele Gilmnore, Michael Wanko, Michigan Opera Theatre Orchestra, The Nyce Band. Awards and festivals: Sundance Film Festival - Best Editing in Documentary Competition, Boston Independent Film Festival - Grand Prix, Tel-Aviv Documentary Film Festival - Special Mention. The woes of Detroit are emblematic of the collapse of the U.S. manufacturing base. Is the Midwestern icon actually a canary in the American coal mine? Detropia is a cinematic tapestry of a city and its people who refuse to leave the building, even as the flames are rising.

Our Nixon. Documentary. USA 2013, 84 min. Directed by Penny Lane. Awards and festivals: Seattle International Film Festival - Documentary Award, International Film Festival Rotterdam - participation, SXSW - participation. Never before seen Super 8 home movies filmed by Richard Nixon's closest aides - and convicted Watergate conspirators - offer a surprising and intimate new look into his Presidency.

Short Film Program

(Notes on) Biology. Short / Animation. USA 2011, 5 min. Directed by Danny Madden. Awards and festivals: SXSW - Jury award. An animated account of an organism adapting to its environment.

K.I.T. Short. USA 2012, 16 min. Directed by Michelle Morgan. Awards and festivals: Sundance film festival - official selection. A guilt-ridden, but well-intentioned, yuppie goes to great lengths to prove she is a decent person.

In Hanford. Animation. USA 2012, 5 min. Directed by Chris Mars. Awards and festivals: Sundance Film Festival - official selection, SXSW - official selection. This heartbreaking true story of a town poisoned by Cold War era nuclear-arms manufacture is told through firsthand accounts and fantasy scenes, which empathize with the victims' plight.

The Chair. Short. USA 2012, 13 min. Directed by David Grainger. Awards and festivals: SXSW - jury award, Berlin International Film Festival - Generation programme, Cannes Film Festival - official selection. The Chair is the story of a mysterious outbreak of poisonous mold in a small town and one boy’s attempt to understand his mother’s death, his grandmother’s obsession with their discarded recliner, and the roots of this short-lived, strange, and inexplicable plague.

Until the Quiet Comes. Short. USA 2012, 4 min. Directed by Kahlil Joseph. Awards and festivals: Sundance Film Festival - special jury award, SXSW - official selection. Shot in the Nickerson Gardens housing projects in Watts, Los Angeles, this film deals with themes of violence, camaraderie, and spirituality through the lens of magical realism.

Knife. Short. USA 2011, 12 min. Directed by James M. Johnston. Awards and festivals: SXSW - official selection. In rural Texas the story chronicles an unnamed man with a broken spirit returning to his family. Where he's been is unknown. In spite of their warm welcome he can't shake a rising anger. So he must leave them again. This time to return to the land that was once theirs, a land that has been stolen, plundered, and sewn with seeds of greed. The Man decides to lay his stakes down and pits himself against it all. He’s on a ruinous mission to sate the hatred in his heart with the knife he carries in his hand.

Sequin Raze. Short. USA 2013, 20 min. Directed by Sarah Gertrude Shapiro. Awards and festivals: SXSW - official selection, NewDirectors/NewFilms - official selection. "Sequin Raze" - starring Anna Camp (Mad Men, True Blood), Ashley Williams and Frances Conroy (Six Feet Under) explores the twisted mental anguish of ‘Goldberg’, a jaded, once-feminist producer on a hit reality show, as she psychotically tortures female contestants into on-camera meltdowns, while simultaneously destroying herself. Tonight, Goldberg, egged on by wildly disoriented and lawless show psychologist (Frances Conroy), ratchets up her interrogation to CIA levels and wages mental mortal- combat against spurned beauty queen (Anna Camp) - but she may have met her match.

Festival Schedule

September 18, Wednesday
19:30 - Nebraska
22:30 - Frances Ha

September 19, Thursday
19:30 - Blue Jasmine
21:45 - Kiss of the Damned

September 20, Friday
19:30 - Austenland
21:45 - The Last Days of Disco

September 21, Saturday
19:00 - Damsels in Distress
21:45 - The Canyons

September 22, Sunday
17:00 - Detropia
19:00 - Metropolitan
21:45 - It Felt Like Love

September 23, Monday
19:30 - Barcelona
21:45 - Upstream Color

September 24, Tuesday
19:30 - Computer Chess
21:30 - Short Film Program

September 25, Wednesday
19:30 - In a World...
21:30 - Don Jon

September 26, Thursday
19:00 - 12 O'Clock Boys
21:30 - White Reindeer

September 27, Friday
19:30 - Austenland
21:45 - Gravity 3D

September 28, Saturday
17:00 - Our Nixon
19:00 - Prince Avalanche
21:00 - Ain't Them Bodies Saints

September 29, Sunday
17:00 - Pandora's Promise
19:00 - Nebraska
21:30 - Short Film Program

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