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November 12 – November 18, 2015

Harnessing and celebrating the best of Northwest film is both the Film Center’s responsibility and joy. As we continue to grow as a fresh and vital institution for the study and celebration of regional film, we’re compelled to keep up a constant search for new filmmakers, new work, and new ways the Film Center can bring artists and audiences together.

As we’ve discovered over the past 42 years, Northwest filmmakers continue to create engaging and progressive work that provides a guarantee of ongoing innovation year after year. Our task is to create a showcase that captures the vibrancy and variety of the cinematic art being created across the Northwest. We invited Steve Anker to help us shape this year’s selection and we hope his discriminating vision, heart, and mind add to your enjoyment of the program.

In addition to the films, this year’s Festival features the annual “part game show, part filmmaking master class” What’s Wrong with this Picture? with Seattle film guru Warren Etheredge. Our invaluable Filmmakers’ Un-conference, created so that filmmakers have a place and time to share ideas and inspiration, allows makers to become the teachers. And, as we are never ones to rest on our plush conifer laurels, we’re proud to announce that this year will feature the first Northwest Filmmakers’ Expo. Top motion picture equipment manufacturers and vendors will be showing off their latest cinematic toys along with demonstrations, presentations, and the opportunity to see and handle the latest cutting-edge motion picture gadgets.

Many thanks go to friends who have helped plan and execute this event, including Tim Williams at the Oregon Film Office, Nathaniel Applefield at the Oregon Media Production Association, and the team at Professional Video and Tape. We also offer big thanks for some heavy lifting from Matt Schulte and Lower Boom who, in addition to helping envision and organize the first Northwest Filmmakers’ Expo, created all the gorgeous design work and trailer for this year’s Festival.

The Festival appreciates the longtime support of LAIKA, the ongoing institutional support of the Regional Arts and Culture Council and Oregon Arts Commission, and the sponsorship of Sierra Nevada Brewing and Koerner Cameras. This year, the Festival is especially honored and thankful to receive support from the Oregon Cultural Trust (and the citizens who fund it) who, like us, are committed to helping artists thrive. The Trust’s investment will help this year’s Best of the Festival Touring Program reach audiences throughout the region.

All these friends have helped the Film Center put together a Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival that will knock your socks off. We hope you’ll come meet and support this year’s filmmakers.

And We Were Young

Directed by Andy Smetanka

Andy Smetanka’s work has ranged from creating a short segment for Guy Maddin’s MY WINNEPEG to ‘The Bachelor and the

Arresting Power: Resisting Police Violence in Portland, Oregon

Directed by Jodi Darby, Julie Perini, Erin Yanke

Media artists and social activists Jodi Darby, Julie Perini, and Erin Yanke’s film speaks to the history of police violence

Birds of Neptune

Directed by Steven Richter

Young sisters Mona and Rachel are left to their own devices after the loss of their cult-member parents. Confined to

Christiania — 40 Years of Occupation

Directed by Robert Lawson, Richard Jackman

For over 40 years a squatter community has occupied an abandoned military base in the center of Copenhagen, Denmark. The

Death On a Rock

Directed by Scott Ballard

Ballard’s (A STANDING STILL, WELCOMING DEPARTURE) latest feature follows a young woman coming to terms with a trying event in

Direct Route

Directed by Pam Minty

A blind woman (Minty’s mother) navigates her domestic surroundings and landscapes while recollecting these places prior to losing her vision.

Drawing the Tiger

Directed by Amy Benson, Scott Squire

Filmed over the course of seven years, DRAWING THE TIGER focuses on the lives of a family of Nepalese subsistence

Hadwin’s Judgement

Directed by Sasha Snow

Grant Hadwin was a logging engineer and expert woodsman whose job was finding and removing the largest, oldest and most

Make Mine Country

Directed by Ian Berry

In the 1940s, the US military built an airbase on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia and brought with them

Shorts II: Tracing Space

Directed by Various

Shorts III: Intimate Portraits

Directed by Various


Directed by Zach Weintraub

"Rob and his friend Austyn apply to become human guinea pigs at the local medical testing facility of a vaguely

The Curio

Directed by Dicky Dahl

Based on his short film of the same name, Dahl’s first feature weaves documentary and narrative elements into a poignant

The Sandwich Nazi

Directed by Lewis Bennet

We meet 50-something Salam Kahil in full (off)-color in his Vancouver delicatessen, where one sign says “Best Sandwiches in North

The Tree Inside

Directed by Michelle Kim, Rob Leickner

Myra is a woman who can’t maintain a relationship with anyone longer than a couple of months—aside from a famous

The Way We Talk

Directed by Michael Turner

Michael Turner (The Life of Vesper Geer), winner of the 2015 Oregon Media Arts Fellowship, struggles with one of medical

Voyagers Without Trace

Directed by Ian McCluskey

In the summer of 1938, filmmaker Bernard de Colmont, his new wife Genevieve and their friend, Antoine de Seynes, set

Welcome to the Circus

Directed by Courtney Coulson

Set in the West Bank city of Ramallah, The Palestinian Circus School welcomes The Lido, a visiting circus school from

The Northwest Film Center recognizes and honors the Indigenous peoples of this region on whose ancestral lands the museum now stands. These include the Willamette Tumwater, Clackamas, Kathlemet, Molalla, Multnomah and Watlala Chinook Peoples and the Tualatin Kalapuya who today are part of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, and many other Native communities who made their homes along the Columbia River. We also want to recognize that Portland today is a community of many diverse Native peoples who continue to live and work here. We respectfully acknowledge and honor all Indigenous communities—past, present, future—and are grateful for their ongoing and vibrant presence.