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Global Lens 2008

Global Lens 2008 includes ten award-winning narrative feature films from Argentina, China, Croatia, Indonesia, Iran, Lebanon, Philippines, and South Africa— click here to view the series trailer, poster and more.  Films from Global Lens 2008 are available for non-theatrical bookings and on DVD—check individual film pages for more information.

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BUNNY CHOW
Director: John Barker
South Africa   |   2006   |   95 minutes
Afrikaans, Tsotsi Taal and English, with subtitles in English
$24.95
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Synopsis In director John Barker's debut feature, up-and-coming comedians Kags, Joey and Dave make clear that life in the 'new' Johannesburg is not just about hardship and townships. It's also about finding humor in relationships, hanging out with friends and celebrating life on a raucous roadtrip to Oppi Koppi-South Africa's largest music festival. Shot in a cinema vrit style and using the street food 'bunny chow' as a metaphor for contemporary Johannesburg's mix of races, cultures and attitudes, Barker's edgy, urban comedy asks us to envision a nation through the eyes of its future, rather than the tragedy of its past.

About the Director John Barker was born in Durban, South Africa. He studied graphic design at ML Sultan in Durban. After working as a graphic designer in Cape Town, he made a change in career paths and began working in the film industry. He has directed various productions, such as the sketch comedy show, The Pure Monate Show, the South African Music Awards, and South Africa's first mockumentary, Blu Cheez (2002). Bunny Chow is his first feature film.Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request

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Featured in the Global Lens 2008 film series.

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KEPT AND DREAMLESS (Las Mantenidas Sin Sueos)
Director: Vera Fogwill and Martn Desalvo
Argentina   |   2005   |   94 minutes
Spanish, with subtitles in English
$24.95
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Synopsis During Argentina's economic crisis of the '90s, nine year-old Eugenia and her mother, Florencia, live a seemingly colorful life surrounded by eclectic neighbors and an offbeat collection of family. But for Eugenia, who must deal with her mother's dysfunctional and drug-addled lifestyle, life is anything but pleasant in this darkly inspiring story of expectation, acceptance and nontraditional family, led by standout performances from director Vera Fogwill and young actress Luca Snieg.

About the Director Vera Fogwill was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1972. She has worked in theater as an actress since the age of fourteen, and won the Best Ibero-American Drama Actress award at the Autumn International Festival for her performance in The Toymaker, which resulted in the Secretary of Culture of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires distinguishing her with an Honorary Diploma and a Distinction to Talent and Effort. The Argentine Cinematographic Critic Association awarded her with a Silver Condor prize in the Feminine Revelation category for her performance in Buenos Aires Vice Versa (1996). She has also been a playwright since the age of fifteen and has written numerous plays, including The Fierce Ones, which won the First Prize and Best Theater Play by La Nacion, an Argentine daily newspaper. In 2003, she was selected from over 3,000 young talents worldwide to attend the “First Global Meeting of Young Moviemaking” hosted by the Berlinale Talent Campus of the Berlin International Film Festival. Kept & Dreamless is her first feature film.

Martín Desalvo was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1973. He studied Image and Sound Design at the University of Buenos Aires, and later studied Cinematography at the Universidad del Cine and the Video and Cinema Investigation and Experimentation Center (CIEVYC). While a student, he produced several short films including, Another One, which was awarded Best Short Film and Best Photography by CIEVYC. From 1998 to 2003, he worked for the production company Pol-ka Producciones. He is the author of the cinematographic book, El Yogui (2003), and the documentary script, The Whore at the Cemetery (2001). Kept & Dreamless is his first feature film.Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request

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Featured in the Global Lens 2008 film series.

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THE KITE (Le Cerf-Volant)
Director: Randa Chahal Sabbag
Lebanon   |   2003   |   80 minutes
Arabic, with subtitles in English
$24.95
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Lebanon’s official submission to the 2003 Academy Awards

Synopsis In director Randa Chahal Sabbag's fairytale for troubled times, sixteen-year old Lamia must cross a border checkpoint between Lebanon and Israel to marry a man she has never met. Neither she nor her betrothed are eager to consummate a marriage to a stranger matter further complicated by Lamia's surprising admission that she is in love with the Israeli soldier guarding the border. Sabbag's enchanting drama about marriage and tradition is underscored by delicate symbolism and artful references to politics of Lebanon's territories that have been annexed.

About the Director Randa Chahal Sabbag was born in Tripoli, Lebanon. She studied film at the University of Vincennes and the School of Louis Lumiére in France. She directed numerous documentaries, short films, and television programs before her first feature film, Sand Screens (1991). Her second feature film, A Civilized People (1998), a black comedy about the Lebanese Civil War, was censored in Lebanon. She refused to make edits to her film that the Ministry of Interior's military censors proposed, which resulted in her being vilified in the press and her family receiving death threats. In 2004, she was awarded with the nation's highest honor, a Chevalier of the Order of the Cedar, for her contributions to Lebanon. The Kite is her third feature film.

Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request

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Featured in the Global Lens 2008 film series.

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OPERA JAWA
Director: Garin Nugroho
Indonesia   |   2006   |   120 minutes
Indonesian, with subtitles in English
$24.95
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Synopsis Setyo and Siti live a peaceful life as husband and wife, selling earthenware in their village. But when Setyo is called away on business, a flirtatious butcher, Ludiro, takes advantage of Siti's loneliness to seduce her. Tempted by song and dance, Siti initially refuses his advances but acquiesces in a moment of weakness, setting the stage for an epic battle between the two men. Located in lush forests and on pristine beaches of Java, director Garin Nugroho bases his deeply imagistic and dazzling visual narrative on the The Abduction of Sita, from the Hindu epic, The Ramayana.

About the Director Garin Nugroho was born in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, in 1961. He studied filmmaking at the Institut Kesenian Jakarta, where he later taught filmmaking and was the Dean Assistant of Film Faculty & TV. He has directed numerous award-wining documentaries, short films and music videos. He has also worked as a film critic for Indonesian newspapers, as a Media Coalition Coordinator at the 2004 election, and is currently the director of SET Film Workshop. His feature film Of Love and Eggs (2004) was selected for Global Lens 2007. His other previous feature films include Birdman Tale (2002), And the Moon Dances (1995), Leaf on a Pillow (1998), Letter for an Angel (1994), and Love on a Slice of Bread (1991). Opera Jawa is his seventh feature film.Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request

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ALL FOR FREE (Sve Džaba)
Director: Antonio Nuic
Croatia   |   2006   |   94 minutes
Bosnian-Croatian, with subtitles in English
$24.95
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Synopsis After his friends are killed in a bizarre, bar room argument, Goran devises an unusual plan to deal with the loss: he will sell his house, buy a mobile tavern and travel from town to town, giving away free drinks to everyone he meets. But for everyone except Goran, the idea is strangely suspicious, and a bit absurd, in director Antonio Nuic's darkly humorous tale of loss and reconciliation, told as a metaphor for Bosnia's gradual rediscovery of its shared humanity, lost during the war.

About the Director Antonio Nui? was born in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1977. He graduated in Film and TV Directing from the Academy of Dramatic Arts in Zagreb, Croatia and is a member of the Croatian Film Directors Society. He has previously directed numerous short films, TV shows, and music and promotional videos. All For Free is his first feature film.

Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD

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Featured in the Global Lens 2008 film series.


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THE BET COLLECTOR (Kubrador)
Director: Jeffrey Jeturian
Philippines   |   2006   |   98 minutes
Tagalog, with subtitles in English
$24.95
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ON DVD: Spring/Winter 2013


Synopsis Amy, the family matriarch, makes ends meet by running a small convenience store out of her home. But in a struggling economy customers are scarce, and without the help of her husband or pregnant daughter, she is forced to supplement the family income by collecting bets for an illegal numbers game. In this starkly realistic narrative, director Jeffrey Jeturian presents a captivating portrait of a once-proud woman, haunted by memories of a dead son and hounded by the police, and her fragile and lonely life as a kubrador (bet collector) on the streets of Manila.

About the Director Jeffrey Jeturian was born in Manila, Philippines in 1959. He studied Broadcast Communication at the University of the Philippines. After college, he held various positions within the film industry for fifteen years before making his first feature film, Enter Love (1998). His second feature film, Fetch A Pail Of Water (1999), about slum dwellers and their struggle for survival, won the NETPAC Jury Award at the 1st CineManila International Film Festival (Philippines) and a Gold Award at the 2000 Worldfest International Film Festival (USA). His third feature film, Larger Than Life (2000), a satirical take on the state of filmmaking in the Philippines, was an official selection for competition in the Cinema Of the Present program of the 2001 Venice International Film Festival (Italy) and won a Gold Award at the 2002 Worldfest International Film Festival (USA). Jeturian's other previous feature films include Bridal Shower (2004), One Moment More (2004), and Bikini Open (2005). The Bet Collector is his seventh feature film.

Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request

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Featured in the Global Lens 2008 film series.

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THE CUSTODIAN (El Custodio)
Director: Rodrigo Moreno
Argentina   |   2006   |   93 minutes
Spanish, with subtitles in English
$24.95
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Synopsis As a bodyguard for a high profile politician, Ruben is reduced to a mere shadow of a man: every action in his life is regulated by a series of mundane routines, and everywhere his boss goes he must follow, watching but never speaking. Resigned to his invisibility, his life is a series of days without meaning, punctuated only by visits to a prostitute, in this compelling chronicle by first-time director Rodrigo Moreno of a man without any true identity or connection to the world in which he lives.

About the Director Rodrigo Moreno was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1972. He graduated from the directing program at the Universidad del Cine, where he has been teaching screenwriting and directing since 1996. He collaborated as writer and director with Ulises Rosell and Andrés Tambornino on the feature film Sweet Repose (2002), an offbeat comedy that won Best Film at Images du Monde Festival (Canada). He also wrote and directed Compañeros, the last segment of the episodic feature Bad Times (1998). He has previously directed several short films, his first being Nosotros (1993), which screened at the Berlin International Film Festival Forum (Germany) and won Best Film at the Bilbao Festival (Spain). The Custodian is his first feature film.

Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request

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Featured in the Global Lens 2008 film series.

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THE FISH FALL IN LOVE (Mahiha Ashegh Mishavand)
Director: Ali Raffi
Iran   |   2006   |   96 minutes
Farsi, with subtitles in English
$24.95
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Synopsis Atieh's singular passion is food, and her small but popular restaurant on the sleepy Caspian coast is her pride and joy. But when Aziz, her former fiancé, appears after a twenty-year absence, the women believe he has intentions of closing the restaurant, so Atieh prepares his favorite dishes, one after the other, in a desperate effort to convince him otherwise. Loosely based on the Persian fable of Shahrazad and the Thousand Myths (A Thousand and One Nights), director Ali Raffi uses the language of food to paint a richly textured portrait of life and love on the northern coast of Iran.

About the Director Ali Raffi was born in Isfahan, Iran in 1938. He holds B.A. and M.A. degrees in Sociology, and B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Dramatic Arts from the Sorbonne University. He also holds a Higher Diploma in Film and Stage Direction from the International Theater University in France, and a Diploma of Acting from Charles Dulain in France. He was the head of the City Theater in Tehran from 1975 to 1978, the dean of the Dramatic College from 1977 to 1980, and currently teaches at Tehran University. He has staged numerous theater productions, and has experience as a performer in multiple films and TV programs. The Fish Fall In Love is his first feature film.

Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request

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Featured in the Global Lens 2008 film series.


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LET THE WIND BLOW (Hava Aney Dey)
Director: Partho Sen-Gupta
India   |   2004   |   93 minutes
Hindi and English, with subtitles in English
$24.95
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Synopisis At the height of nuclear tensions between India and Pakistan, Arjun and his best friend, Chabia, weigh their options for the future against the reality of life on the streets of Mumbai. Enticed by the promise of wealth and opportunity in the Persian Gulf, Chabia is eager to leave his job as a mechanic. But for Arjun, who must finish college and care for his mother, the decision is not so easy in director Partho Sen-Gupta's gritty, apocalyptic interpretation of Krishna's counsel to Arjuna, from the Bhagavad Gita.

About the Director Partho Sen-Gupta was born in Bombay, India in 1965. He started his career as an art department apprentice in the studios of ‘Bollywood’ in 1982. He is an award-winning production designer and art director, and has worked on numerous Indian and foreign films, television programs and theater productions. In 1993, he was awarded a scholarship to study film direction at La FEMIS, in Paris. He has directed several award-winning short films, which have been official selections at film festivals throughout Europe. In 2005, he was invited by the Cinefondation of the Cannes Film Festival to attend the festival as part of a group of promising young filmmakers. Later that year, he directed the documentary, Shakti Timeless, about the Indo-Western fusion group, Shakti, tracing its history from the '70s to the present. Let the Wind Blow is his first feature film.

Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request

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Featured in the Global Lens 2008 film series.

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LUXURY CAR (Jiang Cheng Xia Ri)
Director: Wang Chao
China   |   2006   |   88 minutes
Mandarin (Wuhanese), with subtitles in English
$24.95
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Synopsis In this emotionally taut narrative, Li Qi Ming travels from his small village to the city of Wuhan, determined to fulfill his wife's last wish of seeing her son. But instead of finding his son, he discovers his daughter working as a karaoke bar escort, forcing him to come to terms with their long-estranged relationship and the tenuous future of his family. Director Wang Chao uses Li Qi Ming to represent the painful reality of thousands of parents who have lost contact with their children through rural exodus and political upheaval in China.

About the Director Wang Chao was born in Nanjing, China in 1964. In 1994, he received his university diploma from the Beijing Film Academy. After graduating, he worked for 5 years as a factory worker, writing poems in his spare time. From 1995 to 1998, he was the assistant to Chen Kaige, the director of Farewell My Concubine (1993) and The Emperor and the Assassin (1998). He has also been a cinema critic, specializing in foreign films. His previous feature films include The Orphan of Anyang (2001) and Night and Day (2004). Luxury Car is his third feature film.

Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD. Digibeta available upon request

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Featured in the Global Lens 2008 film series.


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