Spring season in South Florida means the start of the 90 degree weather and more film fests that seems reasonably possible. The month of March roared in like a lion with the Miami International Film Festival. It is now leaving every bit as loud and proud with the Palm Beach International Film Fest (PBIFF).
And there’s no talk of it slowing down. The Women’s International Film & Arts Festival will take over Broward County starting on March 30. That’s an additional 50 films in five days, all fresh out of Hollywood (Florida, not California).
Monday, March 28
The Palm Beach International Film Festival Closing Night Film & Awards Presentation actually happens this Monday, although the Fest itself will go on through March 31. It’s your classic bit of wining and dining, meeting the stars and enjoying the Florida evenings while they are still comfortable. It will be held at West Palm Beach’s Deck 84 @ 7:30 pm replete with a screening of the movie “The First Grader.”
Tuesday, March 29
Just because the PBIFFs closing ceremony was the previous night doesn’t mean the Fest itself is done and gone. Anyone who missed a certain film, or will like to see another one last time, can go to Boca Raton’s The Living Room for repeat screenings. Check out their site to find the schedule of the films you want to see.
Wednesday, March 30
Another week, another fest. Yet if you are going to do it So. Florida style, you do it loud and with some rhythm. This year’s edition of the Women’s International Film & Arts Festival (WIFF) will open up at the Broward County Center of the Performing Arts with the film “Latin Music: USA.” The documentary takes a look over the history of the music that still dominates the dance floors down here, from son to salsa, meringue to samba. Further, this red carpet event will include personal appearances including Ricky Martin, Jennifer Lopez, Shakira and the Estafans. It’s one night only at starts heating up at 8:00 pm.
Thursday, March 31
The festival gets going in earnest with your choice of nine different selections. My personal choice starts at the Aventura AMC, where they will be showing three short subjects about women being Muslim…with a catch. The first of the three films, “UnderCover” is a brilliantly biting comedy about a Muslin woman who also happens to be a cop. If she wants to earn her detective’s badge, she has to find the person responsible for a pig-napping ring. You read that right. The second film, “Salam Rugby,” is about the fastest growing women’s sport in Iran; rugby. Sticking to the sports theme, this screening ends with “Jalla Girls!” about Palestine’s national soccer team. It kicks off @ 4:00 p.m.
Friday, April 1
Cinematic legend Ernest Borgnine may be 93 years old, but he’s still doing more than just cameos. Last year, he darn near stole the show as a more-than-side character in “Red.” This Friday, he and co-star Doris Roberts get up front to meet and greet their fans at Ft. Lauderdale’s Cinema Paradiso. The reason? For the debut of their new film “Another Harvest Moon.” The festivities begin about 7:00 pm.
Saturday, April 2
Back in Hollywood (Florida), the WIFF will be unloading its heaviest schedule of the week. Yet if there is one film you must see, it’s the documentary “Sveva Imprisoned.” This documentary’s tale of an Italian-Canadian outsider painter is the stuff you just can’t make up, and how Sveva Caetani’s art is now coming to international prominence is the icing on the cake. Showing at the Hollywood Central Performing Arts Center @ 5:00 pm.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a film festival without a wrap party. The WIFF will hold theirs tonight at not one locale, but three; The Docker’s Bar & Grill, Club Aizia and Miami’s Trio at the Bay. The Docker’s party starts at 10:00 pm. The remaining two start @ 11:00.
Sunday, April 3
The WIFF will have its closing ceremony with a screening of “Queens of Sound,” covering the latest hot musical trends from Jamaica, from reggaetron to dance hall. Barely a full feature at 74 minutes, it will discuss what it’s like being a female performer in this highly male-dominated island. From there, it’s time to hand out the awards, have that last drink and call it a night. This event will take place at the Hollywood Central Performing Arts Center.