Finding film in unexpected places

For those still skeptical of Arizona’s arts and cultural landscape, there’s plenty of proof on the film horizon that it’s actually a rather magnificent view.

Consider this roundup of films coming your way in unexpected places — then keep an eye out for the many film festivals soon to offer further film fare.

August

“The Exiles” at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. Aug 30 at 1:30pm. Chronicles one night with American Indian youth living in L.A. while exploring the legacy of government relocations of Indians from reservations to urban areas.

September

“Marks of the Ancestors: Indian Rock Art of Arizona” presented by the Heard Museum in Scottsdale at the Appaloosa Library. Sept 2 at 12:30pm. Explores eclectic works by and about indigenous peoples with post-screening discussion.

“Cezanne in Provence” at the Phoenix Art Museum. Sept 8 at 7pm. Documentary illuminates connections between the history/region of Cezanne and the man dubbed by many as ‘the father of modern art.’

“Tallchief” at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. Sept 13 at 1:30pm. Follows childhood and career path of an Osage ballet dancer who performed with Ballet Russes and danced in original roles created for her by famed choreographer George Balanchine.

“The Rape of the Sabine Women” at the Phoenix Art Museum. Sept 15 at 7pm. Contemporary reinterpretation of Roman myth with an operatic sound-scape rather than dialogue.

“The Cotton Club” at the Phoenix Art Museum. Sept 19 at 1pm. Look at famed Depression-era nightclub that gave birth to some of the era’s hottest jazz and most notorious criminals. Intro/Q and A with local expert.

“Water Flowing Together” at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. Sept 20 at 1:30pm. Chronicles life of Navajo principal dancer with the New York City Ballet while exploring his journey home to reconnect with the culture he left behind.

“Collapse” co-presented by Changing Hands Bookstore at Hoodlums Music and Movies in Tempe. Sept 24 at 6pm. Considers the possibility that the global economy, and perhaps civilization itself, will collapse once we run out of fossil fuels.

“Treasure Island” presented by Arizona Opera at the Phoenix Art Museum. Sept 26 at 1pm. Follows the adventures of a yooung man seeking buried treasure amidst a motley crew of cutthroats.

“Dancing from the Heart: Journey of a Pueblo Dance Family” at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. Sept 27 at 1:30pm. Chronicles the life of a family dance group.

October

“Chiefs” at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. Oct 4 at 1:30pm. Documentary following team of American Indian teens as they seek a sports championship amidst poverty, alcoholism, drugs and racism.

“Miss Navajo” presented by the Heard Museum Scottsdale at the Appaloosa Library. Oct 7 at 12:30pm. Documents beauty pageant while showing the importance of cultural preservation and the meaning of being a Navajo woman.

“The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant” at the Phoenix Art Museum. Oct 10 at 1pm. The tale of a fashion designer in the throws of complex and shifting relationships.

“Lady Warriors” at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. Oct 11 at 1:30pm. Follows girls athletic team pursuing an unprecendented fourth consecutive championship in their sport.

“When Your Hands Are Tied” at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. Oct 16 at 1:30pm. Explores unique ways young Native people express themselves in contemporary society while maintaining traditional lives.

“Talk Cinema” at the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts. Oct 19 at 7pm. Series features screenings of independent and foreign films followed by moderated conversations hosted by distinguished critics. Spoiler alerts featuring film titles available just prior to screening dates.

“The Cinematic American Indian-A Three-Part Film Lecture Series” at the Heard Museum in Scottsdale. Oct 19, Oct 26 and Nov 2 at 11:30am.

“Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore” sponsored by the ASU Center for Film, Media and Popular Culture at the Phoenix Art Museum. Oct 24 at 1pm. Follows the travels of a mother and son across the Southwest as they search for a better life. Intro and Q & A by local expert.

“Turquoise Rose” at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. Oct 25 at 1:30pm. Follows Native American college student who begrudgingly opts to care for her ailing grandmother rather than traveling to Europe with friends.

“Dirt! The Movie” co-presented by Changing Hands Bookstore at Hoodlums Music and Movies in Tempe. Oct 29 at 6pm. Examines the possible impact of the growing scarcity of workable soil in the face of environmental destruction.

I feel seriously smart just thinking about all these flicks. One can only hope I make it to enough of them to actually do the trick.

— Lynn

Note: Watch for Friday’s weekend roundup featuring additional film events in the Valley and more. Check with venues before attending to confirm date/time, location, recommended ages, cost, etc.

Coming up: Enjoying arts and culture at Valley community colleges; More film fare from performing arts venues, movie theaters and Arizona universities

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