Arts & Culture

Your Guide to the 10th Annual Bushwick Film Festival

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BUSHWICK – Thursday marks the start of the 10th Annual Bushwick Film Festival, which promises to deliver a host of exciting new films and documentaries from a diverse set of voices and viewpoints.

Last year, the festival welcomed more than 2,700 guests to take in feature-length documentaries, narrative films, and shorts, as well as attending panels from industry professionals—and this year promises an even more exciting lineup!

The Bushwick Film Festival prides itself on representation, and this year is no different, featuring filmmakers and voices from across the spectrum of gender, sexuality and ethnicity, both here in America and abroad.

Passes for the festival can be found online, from VIP packages to single-day passes. Discounts are available for students and Bushwick community members as well.

The full schedule of events features a giant lineup of great opportunities to see exciting new film, but here’s a quick guide of some of the highlights we’re looking forward to:

Feature Documentary

Whose Streets? – Sabaah Folayan and Damon Davis

Billed as “a people’s documentary,” this work focuses on the protests and civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri after the police shooting death of unarmed teenager Mike Brown. In response to the community’s protests, the national guard descended on the town, leading to a standoff that captured the nation’s attention.

 

Coach Jake – Ian Phillips

Following New York City’s winningest soccer coach through a difficult season in both health and sports, this work is by NYC native Ian Phillips. As he turns 70, Coach Jake grapples with the meaning of a legacy and a life as the clock winds down on both.

 

Feature Narrative

In Case of Emergency – Stefanie Sparks

This year’s opening night red carpet premiere follows a Park Avenue wannabe after a taxi accident leaves here without her old social status—or a uterus. With a new friend and a hard look at the pains we take to fit in, she discovers the pointlessness of perfection and a fabricated life.

Pretty Far From Ok (Einmal Bitte Alles) – Helena Hufnagel

A German film following the quarter-life crisis of a young graphic designer struggling in the city, waiting for “real life” to start, this film shows the universality of millennial ennui and the professional and interpersonal struggles one faces transitioning into adulthood.

 

Short Films

There are a ton of short films being presented at this year’s film festival, presented blocks and grouped by themes. What looks good? Try Funny People for a laugh, or The Coming of Age Mixtape for the pains of growing up. Of course, there’s This Woman’s Work, exploring the emotional labor performed by women in a variety of relationships, or Film as Critique / America, as filmmakers turn their lenses on the land of the American Dream—and what that means for some.

 

Panels

For the aspiring actors and actresses in the city, the Breaking Into Hollywood panel will surely hold some insights and anecdotes from working actors, including Arturo Castro of “Broad City” and “Narcos Fame.”

But don’t miss Women in Film, a panel that will highlight the contributions of women in an industry that lacks gender diversity, with discussion led by Bushwick Film Festival founder and filmmaker Kweighbaye Kotee.

In one of the premiere arts communities of Brooklyn, the Bushwick Film Festival provides a unique opportunity to explore diverse New York voices alongside those from abroad, to both celebrate the beauty, absurdity and difficulty of life while pushing to increase our awareness and inclusion of wordviews outside our own… See you there!

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