Where: Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM)
When: June 17 – July 2
Why: Ten years ago, the Brooklyn Academy of Music launched BAMcinématek in downtown Brooklyn as the only daily year-round repertory film program. Tonight, in celebration of its existence and mission, BAM launches its first ever in-house film festival: BAMcinemaFEST.
Neither Brooklyn nor BAM are new to the festival scene, however, BAMcinemaFEST will certainly stand apart as it intends to create a festival atmosphere within its walls and on nearby outdoor screening grounds. There is even more to anticipate than a projector rolling tape of new and innovative dramas and documentaries. As part of the 16 day event, festival goers can choose from a fully packed program including a day of shorts, an all night movie marathon, an Evening with Arnaud Desplech, the Bamcinématek Sidebar (six nights of repertory classics), and Q&A’s.
“Q&As are a crucial way for film festivals to introduce new films and premieres. Outdoor screenings are really fun for the summer and are a way to reach a wider audience,” said Florence Almozini, BAMcinématek’s program director. “With the success of our annual Takeover event programmed with all night films, we felt it was important to have playful events during the BAMcinemaFEST. This way there is something for everyone!”
Among the 18 new dramatic films and documentaries being screened, there will be intimate family stories like “Beeswax,” “William Kunstlers: Disturbing the Universe,” “Everything Strange and New,” and “Children of Invention.” Two other films, “Prom Night in Mississippi” and “What’s on Your Plate,” provide context for teens on issues like race and weight in America and are sure to be compelling cinematic themes for audiences. Brooklyn-based director Dia Sokol will screen his first directed feature and romantic comedy “Sorry, Thanks” at the festival as well.
“It is our mission to offer a platform for both emerging and established filmmakers from around the world and the U.S.—many who live here in Brooklyn—to present their work,” said Karen Brooks Hopkins, president of BAM.
How To Get There: Take the 2, 3, 4, 5 to Atlantic Avenue or the D,M,N,R to Pacific Street. For a full list of BAMcinemaFEST film screenings and events visit bam.org.
Photo: Courtesy of PhotoFest and BAM