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Cafe Instanbul (7:00 PM)
A Japanese film about a teenager’s strange venture into a haunted house
Hi-Ho Lounge (8:00 PM)
King James & the Special Men
Charmaine Neville Band
New Orleans Jazz Vipers
Johnny Sketch and the Dirty Notes
Zeitgeist Multi-Disciplinary Arts Center (7:30PM)
Julianne Moore, Steve Coogan, and Alexander Skargard star in the film, an adaptation of Henry James' novella of the same name
8301 Olive Street (6:00 PM)
Honey Island Swamp Band Trio with Alvin Youngblood Hart will play at the fourth annual celebration of the farmer’s market, with proceeds to go to kid’s farm education programs
Rosa Keller Library (5:00-9:00 PM)
My House NOLA presents a rolling food vendor mini festival
The Antenna Gallery (7:00 PM)
A series of music-themed movies and documentaries, curated and hosted by DJ Soul Sister, and co-presented by Charitable Film Network, Press Street, and WWOZ
Jewish Community Center (7:30 PM)
The second evening of a chamber music festival that has something for classical aficionados and dilettantes alike
Circle Bar (10:00 PM)
Catch the Indie rockers on their North American tour
Act-ivism: Social Change Film Festival Begins in New Orleans
A new festival is in town, and the celebration has nothing to do with music, food, or drunken antics. The Social Change Film Festival began last year in Bali, but the 2nd annual SCFF made its home a long way from Indonesia, right here in the Big Easy. Today through Sunday, venues across the city will host films and discussions dealing with an issue all too familiar to New Orleanians—water.
Founder Cynthia Phillips “works mainly in the intersection between social change, philanthropy, and the film industry,” said SCFFI spokesperson Jocelyne Ninneman.
Each year, organizers center film selection on a new theme. “Water” in such a context invokes images of disaster and coastal erosion for people along the Gulf Coast, but the festival brings in filmmakers that deal international water issues. Panels and films focus on scarcity in Africa, pollution in New York, and sustainability worldwide.
Events in Bali and NOLA are the beginning of the SCFFI’s far-reaching vision. The third festival will take place in Brazil, and South Africa will host the fourth.
Ninneman said that Phillips’ overarching goal is to provide a free, open forum for people to discuss films’ subject matters.
“That’s really kind of her big vision, providing an online platform that coincides with the actual festival and institute,” explained Ninneman.
The eight feature-length films and nine shorts to be screened in this year’s festival will deal with a variety of water-related issues, focusing on populations in New York, Indonesia, and Tibet, to name a few.
Those who missed Beasts of the Southern Wild, in theaterscan see the surrealist adventure on Friday at Loyola University at 5:30pm, followed by a panel discussion.
Filmmaker and author Jon Bowermaster is one of the festival’s honorees, and he’s screening a film that has become increasingly relevant in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Dear Governor Cuomo deals with hydraulic fracturing or “fracking”, the process of drawing crude oil out of the earth by injecting specific mineral-based fluid into the ground soil.
“Jon’s film is about that issue, not a natural disaster issue but a human agency matter,” said Ninneman. “There’s this technology, but it’s contaminating public water.” Ninneman said many of the films being screened explore the balance between technology and health.
One of the many panel discussions taking place brings together the Southeast Louisiana Water Challenge, Jon Bowermaster, the Blue Planet Network, and Mara Alper. “Water Challenges and Solutions,” is a free event at the CAC on Saturday, and it will include screenings of Dear Governor Cuomo, Carbon for Water, and Watershed.
“The Southeast Louisiana Water Challenge is intricately looking at truly alternative and innovative solutions to living with the water situation in this region—dealing with not just living below sea level and natural disasters but also creative thoughts on water systems, public water, and economic opportunities,” said Ninneman.
Ninneman said films such as Bikela Bagarap and Carbon for Water wrestle with the balance between economic growth and the impact of development in African communities. “There’s a combination of water scarcity and pollution from various sources, and we see an intersection of industrialization and development vs. the healthy state of water,” explained Ninneman.
Films illustrate the issues at play, but the festival itself is full of panels, fundraisers, and opportunities for New Orleans residents to engage on issues impacting local communities.
Those interested in attending a panel or seeing featured films can download a full schedule at SCFFI’s website. Participating venues include Dillard University, Loyola University, the CAC, and Zeitgeist Multidisciplinary Arts Center.
Ninneman emphasized that while some events are free, admission fees for any film or discussion can be waived depending on a person’s finances. “If anyone has an issue with payment and feels like they really want to attend a specific event, what they need to do is contact us or show up and inquire at the admission’s desk,” stressed Ninneman.
Those are able to drop a little dough can go to the awards ceremony and gala event at Tipitina’s on Friday night, from 7-9pm. Proceeds from the festival and Friday night’s gala will benefit participating organizations.
“We’re partnered with a selection of national and global organizations,” Ninneman explained. “If you attend the gala fundraiser on Friday, the money from the door goes back to the selective organizations that we’re giving awards to on Friday.”
Participants include the Gulf Restoration Network, the Ford Foundation, Global Green USA, nola wise, the Idea Village, and dozens more. Organizations are listed below the full schedule of films and panels.
Dead Huey Long, Emma Boyce, Ian Hoch, Sarah Esenwein, Ryan Sparks, Will Dilella, Chris Rinaldi, Lianna Patch, Phil Yiannopoulos, Cate Czarnecki, Jonas Griffin, Jennifer Abbot, Mary Kilpatrick, Elaina Patton, Mike Horst, Devin Bambrick, Katherine McGuire, Norris Ortolano, Joe Shriner
Ryan Sparks, Kerem Ozkan
Michael Weber, B.A.
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