To kick off opening day of HIFF 31 we start off from a post from Matt DeKneef over at the HIFF Blog who gives us some perspective on the general festival structure and the “Opening Night” film:
They [opening night film, centerpiece, closing night film] add a sense of form and structure to the fun-in-the-chaos that is HIFF. Since the OPENING NIGHT FILM is tomorrow, some myths we want to clean up . . .
- Opening Night doesn’t mean this is the first film of the festival.
- Opening Night is not sold out. Yet.
- Opening Night doesn’t screen more than once.
Just remember to apply Rule #3 to the Centerpiece and Closing Night films as well.
Over at HonoluluPulse.com (a division of the Honolulu Star Advertiser) they have a bunch of reviews up for films that are being shown early on in the festival. Features reporter Gary Chun kicks things off with his review of HIFF’s Opening Night Film, a Korean war movie The Front Line:
The film is riveting because it presents the war without false glory and fanfare. There are no bravura, patriotic moments. It’s a slog through a brutal war that leaves everyone, including the audience, emotionally spent at the end.
They also have reviews up for Together, Sabi Sabi, A People Uncounted, and Marathon Boy. I think they’re posting reviews daily so be sure check back for reviews of other HIFF films. Star Advertiser Cel Shaded columnist Jason Yadao has a second Sabi Sabi review for the paper here.
Over at the Honolulu Weekly, Ryan Senaga talks about how there’s something for everyone at this year’s festival and opens with HIFF’s long run of 31 years:
In this age of economic downturn, it’s awe-inspiring when something–anything–in the local arts community lasts for 31 years. Hell, it’s shocking when something in the arts and entertainment sector lasts for even 31 days. Thus, rejoice. The Hawaii International Film Festival Presented by Halekulani celebrates three decades (plus one year) with 216 films, all with the usual eclectic cultural flavors. (Love that logo with the maneki neko holding the flip recorder.)
Senaga possibly has the inside track on the best films of HIFF with programming director Anderson Le giving his 10 picks at this year’s HIFF. Sorry, you’re gonna have to click the link above to see Anderson’s list.
Breaking into section categories, David Nishimoto with the Honolulu Examiner previews the local films in this year’s festival:
But besides The Descendants, I am mostly looking to see what Hawaii’s own local filmmakers have in store for their audience. This year, there are about seven original films made within the state. Among them are a pair of anthology films, a documentary, and dark drama showcasing the underground world of paradise.
Nishimoto goes on to talk about Paradise Broken and the rest of the films that were produced and shot here in Hawaii.
With more from on the Hawaii section, StarAdvertiser film & television reporter Mike Gordon writes about 6B and The Short List, two anthology films produced by two local production companies:
Included in the Hawaii International Film Festival’s “Made In Hawaii” collection of local films this year are two anthologies — “6B” from Kinetic Films and “The Short List” from TalkStory Productions.
HIFF has often served as a venue to showcase homegrown talent and the two anthologies include nine short films by different Hawaii directors.
Head over there to read up on who all the directors are as well as the titles of the shorts in the anthologies.
Over at the Chinatown Newspaper, this month’s issue is dedicated to HIFF, with a special focus on the HIFF Extreme section. HIFF programming director Anderson Le provides a little insight into just what HIFF Extreme is:
As genre fans come out of the woodwork, HIFF EXTREME, a new section that is essentially a consolidation of our former sub-sections EXTREME ASIA and AFTER DARK, is a safe home for the miscreants and deviants of midnight movies from around the world! Full of sex, violence and stretching the barriers of taste and tolerance, HIFF goes for the EXTREME.
Head over there for the rest of Anderson’s description as well as an interview with UH’s ACM chair professor Tom Brislin, HIFF’s executive director Chuck Boller on being like George Clooney, and more on HIFF EXTREME.