New Orleans Film Festival Opens in Two Weeks; More Than 230 Films Programmed Including Dozens of Docs
30th annual NOFF runs October 16-23, showcasing fiction and nonfiction films from Jojo Rabbit to Vision Portraits
New Orleans is famous for its jazz festival, but for three decades it has also been home to one of the top film festivals in North America.
The 30th annual New Orleans Film Festival opens Wednesday, October 16 and runs through the following Wednesday, with more than 230 cinematic works of fiction and nonfiction on the schedule. NOFF kicks off with Marriage Story, the Noah Bombach drama starring Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson that just held its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival.
Thursday - the first full day of the festival - boasts screenings of five documentary features including Rodney Evans' Vision Portraits, in which the director explores the impact of failing eyesight on four artists, Evans among them.
The festival’s seasoned team of programmers carefully curated a slate of 232 visionary, thought-provoking films that represent a wealth of perspectives.
Also screening Thursday is Havana, From on High, a documentary by Pedro Ruiz about the capital of Cuba where some of the city's poorest residents resort to living on rooftops.
"What begins as a portrait of everyday life becomes an exploration of the effects of socio-economic disarray and increased foreign influence on a fiercely independent nation," NOFF programmers note. "Despite their adversity and separation from the world, the rooftop dwellers of Havana, like all others, search for happiness."
Singular, directed by Dennis Scholl and Marlon Johnson, "chronicles the extraordinary rise of Haitian-American jazz singer Cecile Mclorin Salvant, anchored by a pristine recording of a live concert."
Pier Kids, directed by Elegance Bratton, centers on LGBT young people, most of them of color and most without homes, who find a place of refuge on a pier in New York's Hudson River.
Matthew Carey is a documentary filmmaker and journalist. His work has appeared on Deadline.com, CNN, CNN.com, TheWrap.com, NBCNews.com and in Documentary magazine.