If you are looking to do something this weekend, how about a short drive to Rome, GA for the 11th annual Rome International Film Festival. Starting Thursday, Sept. 4th, the film festival runs through Sunday, Sept. 7th, showing some of the best international films from Australia, Austria, Hungary, Italy, and Japan. Among the 61 films playing at the festival, there is also a strong American lineup in this year’s festival, many of which have played at other prestigious Southeastern festivals like the Atlanta Film Festival, the Sarasota Film Festival and the Sidewalk Film Festival in Birmingham, Alabama.
Four selections have been highlighted as Spotlight Films. On Friday, September 5th, “Fight Church” will screen. Directed by Bryan Storkel and Daniel Junge, the documentary explores the strange but growing Christian MMA scene. Later that night, New Orleans-shot comedy “Father-Like Son,” directed by Mac Alsfield, will be featured. On Saturday, September 6th, “Limo Ride,” from Atlanta-based filmmakers Gideon C. Kennedy and Marcus Rosentrater, will pull into the DeSoto. Set and shot in Alabama, the film is a hilarious and experimental blend of documentary and feature-length reenactment. On Sunday, September 7th, Andrew Mudge’s “The Forgotten Kingdom” will screen. The South African and Lesothoan coproduction recently won three African Oscars. Producer TR Boyce Jr. will be in attendance for the festival.
The opening night film on Thursday is “No Ordinary Hero: The SuperDeafy Movie”, directed by Troy Kotsur and starring Academy Award-winning actress Marlee Matlin, “No Ordinary Hero” is the first film to be made exclusively by a deaf director and deaf executive producers. All screenings of the film, including RIFF’s opening night presentation, are 100% open captioned. The film centers around the man behind the beloved SuperDeafy character as he sets out to teach a young deaf boy how to redefine what being “normal” means.
On Sunday, Sept. 7th, the closing night film will be “B.F.E.”, from director Shawn Telford. “B.F.E.” already won over audiences at the Sarasota and Seattle International Film Festivals and is set to take RIFF by storm on Saturday, September 6th. Set and shot in a small Idaho town, “B.F.E.” shows four intersecting stories which reveal that this small town is anything but quiet. The director of the film, Shawn Telford is scheduled to attend.
Founded in 2003, the Rome International Film Festival (RIFF) is northwest Georgia’s signature film festival event. Named as one of MovieMaker Magazine’s “top 20 festivals worth the submission fee,” RIFF is proud to have shared independent films from dozens of countries across the globe with thousands of film fans and filmmakers from near and far over the last 11 years. Rome’s historic DeSoto Theatre serves as the central venue for the festival. Built in 1927, the DeSoto was the first cinema in the Southeastern United States to screen sound films. In addition to showcasing dozens of feature-length and short films every year, RIFF also programs industry workshops and an annual make-up artist competition.
For more information go to www.romeinternationalfilmfestival.org