"The films in SAM's tribute to one of the three masters of Japan's Golden Age of film, Yasujiro Ozu, are all beautiful and have at their core the quiet spirit of their times and places—mid-century, post-war Japan. It will end with An Autumn Afternoon, which has one of the best bar scenes in the history of cinema." CM

Find a complete list of film events in Seattle this spring on our Things To Do calendar.

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Dark Night
In 2012, viewers of The Dark Knight Rises were gunned down by James Holmes in an Aurora cinema. Adapting the terrible story of the massacre, Tim Sutton has created a drama about six strangers, including a killer, during one fateful day in suburban Sarasota.
Grand Illusion

I'm Not Crying, You're Crying: 50 Years of Political TV Satire
How do politics and political comedy interact? Explore the question by watching satire from the past 50 years with host Claire Buss and hear from panelists including UW Assistant Professor in Comparative Literature, Cinema, and Media Stephen Groening, writer and performer Elicia Sanchez, and comedian Bettina McKelvey.
Northwest Film Forum


First Wednesday Queer Film Series
As the title suggests, Three Dollar Bill Cinema presents screenings of queer films on the first Wednesday of every month. In March, watch G.B.F., about a group of bitchy and popular high school girls that decides that a gay best friend is the latest status symbol they need—but, since, no one they know is out of the closet, they decide to drag them out instead. In April, in honor of Lesbian Visibility Day, watch Mosquita Y Mari, a selection from the 2012 Sundance Film Festival about two 15-year-old girls growing up in a Los Angeles neighborhood that is predominantly made up of Mexican immigrants.
Northwest Film Forum

MARCH 2–16

Viva Italia! Italian Film Series
The final screenings in this series of mid-century Italian films will be Padre Padrone (a 1977 film directed by Paolo and Vittorio Taviani, based on the autobiographical book by Gavino Ledda) on March 2, the 1980 fantasy/comedy/drama City of Women (about a man trapped at a feminist conference) on March 9, and 1982 fantasy war drama Night of the Shooting Stars (also directed by the Taviani brothers) on March 16.
Seattle Art Museum


Josef von Sternberg’s newly restored 1953 drama centers on Keiko, the “Queen Bee” of the island of Anatahan, where a gang of Japanese sailors are stranded at the end of World War II. Trapped and unaware that the worldwide struggle is over, the men fight over Keiko and the land. The re-release of this adaptation of a real incident should be an exciting event for classic film lovers, particularly those who admire von Sternberg’s subversive ferocity.
Grand Illusion

The Brand New Testament
The latest production by Jaco Van Dormael imagines God as an ill-tempered, abusive, and sadistic curmudgeon that lives in an apartment in Brussels with his wife and daughter. The film took four awards including best film and best director at the 2016 Magritte Awards (honoring the best Belgian films).
SIFF Film Center

Bugs Bunny at the Symphony II
For many of us, Richard Wagner's music entered our consciousness when, in Bugs Bunny's "What's Opera, Doc?" we heard Elmer Fudd sing "Kill the wabbit, Kill the wabbit" to Ride of the Valkyries. When Bugs Bunny hears this call for the death of his kind, he pokes his long-eared head out of a hole, looks at the the camera, and says, with the kind of sadness that is funny because it's almost real: "Kill the rabbit?" They do not make cartoons like that anymore. Cartoons that bring the highest parts of Western culture right down to the big belly of low culture laughter. CM
Benaroya Hall

This documentary has lots of beautiful shots of the city of Istanbul, the gateway to the East and the gateway to the West. But the subject of the film is not the city itself but its street cats, which appear to be numerous and content with the ways of life their city provides. American street cats look wild, dirty, scrawny. These street cats look the same as domestic ones. And people love them, feed them, pamper them, and tranquilly endure their bad habits and uppity attitudes. One man says: "Dogs think we are gods; cats know we are not gods." Cat lovers cannot afford to miss this documentary. CM
SIFF Cinema Uptown

XX offers not one, but four horror stories created by women directors: The Birthday Party by Annie Clark (better known at St. Vincent), Her Only Living Son by Karyn Kusama, Don't Fall by Roxanne Benjamin, and The Box by Jovanka Vuckovic. The stories will be tied together with animation by Guadalajara-based animator Sofia Carrillo.
Northwest Film Forum


Puget Soundtrack
Puget Soundtrack invites musicians to create a live score for a film of their own choosing. On March 3, ambient musician Your City Sleeps (aka Miles Kazemian) will create a live soundtrack for Wolfgang Petersen's 1985 drama Enemy Mine. On April 20, multimedia duo David Golightly and Emily Pothast (aka Hair and Space Museum) will perform a live score for George Lucas' 1971 science fiction film THX 1138.
Northwest Film Forum


International Day for Women and Trans People
Northwest Film Forum and the students and faculty at University of Washington Bothell present this day-long celebration of the International Day for Women and Trans People, featuring film screenings, performances, visual art installations, and conversations.
Northwest Film Forum


The Road to Nickelsville
This documentary witnesses personal stories from residents of Nickelsville, a local encampment (from which residents were evicted last March), who tell how precipitously one can become homeless and how one can survive. The individual narratives are presented alongside an institutional perspective from the director of the Low Income Housing Institute and a district court judge.
Northwest Film Forum


Campout Cinema
Campout Cinema brings the "outdoor movie experience" indoors—remember blankets, pillows, and sleeping bags, and they'll provide the food, themed drinks, and "other surprises." On March 5, they'll present an all-ages screening of The Princess Bride. On April 14, they'll screen Raiders of the Lost Ark for 21+ guests, and they'll finish with an all-ages presentation of The Muppet Movie on May 21.
MoPOP Sky Church


Silent Movie Mondays: Love Stories Series
Experience classic silent films in the gorgeous Paramount Theatre. They will wrap up their "Love Stories" series with a screening of The Dragon Painter, a 1919 film starring Sessue Hayakawa as a painter who believes his fiancée was turned into a dragon.
Paramount Theatre


The Red Shoes & The King of Comedy
At this series of screenings, film editor Thelma Schoonmaker (known for editing all of Scorsese's films since Raging Bull) will be in attendance. Her late husband, Michael Powell, directed The Red Shoes, a film about which Andrew Wright once wrote in The Stranger: "A favorite of Scorsese, this may just be the greatest film from the Powell-Pressburger team, which is saying quite a bit. Almost indecently lovely, with Technicolors that pulse off of the screen. You've gotta see this in a theater." The King of Comedy is a 1982 film starring Robert De Niro as a stand-up comedian who hosts an imaginary talk show in his mom's basement.
Seattle Art Museum


Do Androids Dream of Giant Money?
This "docu-satire," an episode of the Douglas Fern Fact File, explores the allegedly tense relationship between the exploding tech sector in Seattle and the city's arts community.
Northwest Film Forum

MARCH 8 & 10

Happy Hour
At this two-part screening, watch the Seattle premiere of Ryûsuke Hamaguchi's five-hour epic about the effects of one woman's divorce on her group of friends. Richard Brody of the New Yorker called it "extraordinary both in its artistry and in its dimensions."
Northwest Film Forum


Sword Art Online
Video gamers discover that their virtual world is overlapping with reality, creating nightmares. It's up to Kirito to save the day in this new animated film adaptation of the Japanese light novel.
Pacific Place


Festival of (In)appropriation #9
This annual festival, with curator Lauren Berliner in attendance, highlights artistic, innovative, and inappropriate uses of existing film or video footage.
Northwest Film Forum

Kong: Skull Island 3D & IMAX
I want this story of the giant ape to just die. But it will just not do this thing that's very much needed. Hollywood keeps making Kong films. It also keeps making Tarzan movies. More distressing yet, the latest iteration of the latter has this in common with that of the former: a major role played by black American star Samuel Jackson. Why, Jackson? Why be a part of these colonialist fantasies and myths? CM
Various locations

My Life as a Zucchini
This French-Swiss stop motion animation picture (a nominee for best animated feature film at the 2017 Academy Awards) couldn't be released under its original title, My Life as a Courgette, because people in the United States generally don't know what courgettes are. The main character's name, however, is still "Courgette"—a plucky boy who finds himself living in an orphanage.
SIFF Film Center

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me
While waiting for the long-anticipated release of the new Twin Peaks series (25 years after the first one ended), watch David Lynch's 1992 French-American horror film Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me. Sheryl Lee and Gary Hershberger (who starred in both the film and the acclaimed TV show) will be in attendance to answer questions.
Seattle Art Museum


The Freedom to Marry
This documentary, a real-life legal thriller, retraces the road to the US Supreme Court's decision to legalize same-sex marriage and remembers the battles fought by its proponents.
SIFF Film Center

Seattle Web Fest
Northwest Film Forum welcomes web series creators and consumers for a day of screenings, panels, workshops, and more.
Northwest Film Forum


Mr. Gaga
Learn about Ohad Naharin, the artistic director of world renowned Tel Aviv dance company Batsheva (founded in 1964 by Martha Graham and Baroness Batsheva de Rothschild) in this documentary biography film.
Northwest Film Forum


The Challenge
This film, directed by Yuri Ancarani is set in Qatar and features majestic birds swooping through the air as it tells the story of a Sheikh falconer competing in a tournament.
Northwest Film Forum


Darkness Film Series
Watch films that explore the darkness—reflections of madness, colonialism, or oppression—of world cinema. Shura (March 16) is Toshio Matsumoto's Noh-influenced revenge drama of a cheated samurai; Sergey Paradjanov's The Color of Pomegranates (April 13), banned by the Soviets for its noncompliance with socialist realist aesthetics, tells the story of the poet Sayat Nova.
Henry Art Gallery


Beauty and the Beast
There really can only be one Beauty and the Beast, and it was directed by the great French poet Jean Cocteau right after the Second World War. A masterpiece of European cinema, it stars Jean Marais as the beast and Josette Day as the beauty. Not to hate on Disney—the corporation that produced the latest version of this old fairy tale, which stars Dan Stevens as the beast and Emma Watson as the beauty—but there is just no way its Beauty will be better than Cocteau's. Why? Because it will lack that natural and effortless poetry that is almost in every shot of Cocteau's work. CM
Various locations

Land of Mine
Directed by Martin Zandvliet, this Danish-German historical drama (a nominee for best foreign language film at the 2017 Academy Awards) is set just after World War II, and is about German soldiers forced to remove land mines from the ground in Denmark with their bare hands.
Seven Gables

The town of Uncertain, Texas, is in danger, because the large lake that they depend on is infected by an aquatic weed. Unbelievably, this film is actually a documentary, and paints a beautiful portrait of their community and landscape.
Northwest Film Forum

You're Killing Me, Susana
Gael García Bernal plays a man shocked by his wife's sudden, wordless departure from their Mexico City home. He braves border control to find her in an Iowan university, only to confront the fact that she has begun a new stage of her life—with an imposing new man in the picture.
SIFF Film Center


Beau Travail
Claire Denis's 1999 film transposes Melville's homoerotic Billy Budd to a French Foreign Legion corps. As the all-male company swelters in the Gulf of Djibouti, Officer Galoup is tortured by ferocious jealousy of a new recruit, Sentain. Desire and colonial tensions reach exploding point under the eye of an authoritarian commander as Galoup tries to undermine the interloper.
Northwest Film Forum

Tickling Giants
Egyptian comedian Bassem Youssef hosted an incredibly popular satirical news show (Al Bernameg) and has been called "the Jon Stewart of the Arab world." He made international news when a warrant was issued for his arrest due to comments he made on the show. Learn about his life and story through this new documentary.
Guild 45th


All'Opera: Le Nozze di Figaro
To commemorate the 225th anniversary of Mozart's death, watch a screening of Frederic Wake-Walker's production of the 1786 classic comic opera Le Nozze di Figaro (essentially a sequel to The Barber of Seville) that's full of love, trickery, and aristocratic authoritarianism.
Guild 45th

Le Havre
Finnish auteur Aki Kaurismäki may be known for the tragicomic bleakness of his classics The Match Factory Girl and Leningrad Cowboys Go America, but Le Havre is something else entirely: A contemporary fairy tale about the goodness of ordinary people. In this case, the good people are inhabitants of the French port city of Le Havre who band together to help an African boy evade the immigration police.
SIFF Film Center


Family Circle: The Films of Yasujiro Ozu
The films in SAM's tribute to one of the three masters of Japan's Golden Age of film, Yasujiro Ozu, are all beautiful and have at their core the quiet spirit of their times and places—mid-century, post-war Japan. The series begins with Late Spring, which doesn't have much action in it but presents the kind of stillness that only a highly refined sense of one's culture can achieve; and ends with An Autumn Afternoon, which is a little more lively and has one of the best bar scenes in the history of cinema. CM
Seattle Art Museum


The Land of the Enlightened
This film, directed by Pieter-Jan De Pue and shot over the course of five years, is about the devastating effects of war on Afghanistan, and includes scenes of young people bartering over old Soviet explosives. It won a special jury award for best cinematography at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival.
Northwest Film Forum

The Lure
Two sirens, Golden and Silver, become a hit act at a none-too-savory nightclub. But being a mermaid is complicated: You can't have sex in your human form, and you still kind of crave human flesh. Throw in their coworkers' ordinary greed and lust, and you've got a lot of trouble.
SIFF Film Center

This French-Belgian horror film is so scary, when it screened at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival, multiple people in the audience passed out and paramedics had to be called. The plot revolves around a vegetarian who passes through a hazing ritual at vet school and, as a result, becomes a cannibal.
SIFF Cinema Uptown


Homeland: Iraq Year Zero
Catch the Seattle premiere of this epic two-part 2015 documentary film by Abbas Fahdel that offers everyday depictions of Iraq both before and after the United States invaded (beginning in February 2002).
Northwest Film Forum


Seattle Jewish Film Festival
This 22nd annual festival is a cinematic exploration and celebration of Jewish life around the globe. They promise dozens of films from countries including France, Italy, Greece, Turkey, and Poland, along with exciting guests, opening and closing night parties, and programs like a Matzoh Momma Sunday Brunch with Klezmer music.
Stroum Jewish Community Center


Wear a "cognition headband" and meld your mind with those of other cinema-goers to make a massive mind-picture at this screening of a science fiction film about a neural network experiment. Meta!
Pacific Place


Contemporary Color
This documentary focuses on an intriguing performance staged by musician David Byrne in which ten Color Guard teams (dancing, flag-flipping, rifle-waving performance groups) collaborated on elaborate routines with performers including St. Vincent, Nelly Furtado, and Ira Glass.
Northwest Film Forum


Ghost in the Shell
The 1995 version of Ghost in the Shell (an adaptation of the manga by Masamune Shirow) was very well received, but it's being made again—this time, directed by Rupert Sanders (Snow White and the Huntsman) and written by Jamie Moss and Ehren Kruger. The movie deals with issues of cyborg identity and artificial intelligence, and the (generally whitewashed) cast includes Scarlett Johansson, Michael Pitt, Pilou Asbæk, Chin Han, and Juliette Binoche.
Various locations


Visiting Artist Daïchi Saïto
Watch eight short films by experimental Montreal-based Japanese filmmaker Daïchi Saïto and meet the artist in person. Look forward to philosophical, poetic, and hypnotic works (many of them silent).
Northwest Film Forum

APRIL 4–25

Imitation of Life: The Films of Douglas Sirk
The master of simmering melodrama and "women's pictures," Douglas Sirk brought out the colorful beauty and underlying strife of small-town and big-city America in the 1950s. In films like Magnificent Obsession (1954), All That Heaven Allows (1955), Written on the Wind (1956), and Imitation of Life (1959)—a different one of which will show at SIFF every Tuesday in April—Sirk elicited moving, atypical performances from the biggest Hollywood stars and subtly condemned racial and classist hypocrisy.
SIFF Film Center


The Void
A police officer rushes a bloodied young man straggling down the road to a hospital at night. Cloaked figures follow and begin a deadly siege as the hospital's occupants lose their minds. This homage to Lovecraft was produced by the team behind the Puritan horror hit The Witch.
Grand Illusion

Your Name
Although they don't know each other, teenagers Mitsuha and Taki suddenly and periodically switch bodies and lives. At first startled, they soon begin to see this strange happenstance as a chance to find a soul mate. As of this writing, Makoto Shinkai's film is the highest-earning anime film ever made, and its hopeful sci-fi message may evoke Arrival.
SIFF Cinema Uptown

APRIL 10–24

Silent Movie Mondays: Comedy Classics
The "Comedy Classics" series will begin with Buster Keaton's Steamboat Bill, Jr. on April 10. On April 17, they'll screen Girl Shy, and they'll finish with a selection of classic shorts (featuring stars including Laurel and Hardy, Chaplin and Marie Dressler, Lloyd, and Keaton) on April 24. Clark Wilson, Christian Elliot and Tedde Gibson will play the Mighty Wurlitzer Theatre Pipe Organ and Paul Hanson will take care of Foley sound (the re-creations of the films' ambient noise).
Paramount Theatre


Alive and Kicking
Get a peek into the emotional lives of swing dancers through this new documentary by Susan Glatzer.
Northwest Film Forum

ByDesign Film Festival
This year's edition of the ByDesign Film Festival (celebrating "intersections of design and the moving image") will feature Briar Levitt's new documentary Graphic Means, which explores the history of graphic design production from the 1950s through the 1990s.
Northwest Film Forum


A year after the terrorist attack on the Boston Marathon, the organizers and athletes prepare for a new run. Discover the history of what began as a "working man's challenge" and has become an expression of defiance and fearlessness.
Pacific Place

Wild and Scenic Film Festival
See environmental and adventure films with the theme of "At The Edge" at this festival that will benefit the Washington Water Trust.
SIFF Cinema Uptown

APRIL 24–30

TED2017 Cinema Experience
Don't wait to watch them on YouTube—watch the talks from the TED2017 conference, taking place this year in Vancouver, live.
Pacific Place

APRIL 27–30

National Film Festival for Talented Youth
NFFTY (open to directors under 24 years old) promises an opening night celebration, a gala, guest speakers, parties, and several hundred films.
SIFF Cinema Uptown and Cinerama

MAY 4–14

Translations Film Festival
Three Dollar Bill Cinema presents this 12th annual festival highlighting local films and artists exploring transgender experiences.
Northwest Film Forum


Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Paul Constant wrote that 2014's Guardians of the Galaxy centers on Chris Pratt's charming depiction of "a self-described outlaw from Earth who's spent his entire adult life stealing and fucking and getting into fights." Catch the sequel, also directed by James Gunn, and starring most of the same cast.
Various locations

MAY 18–JUNE 11

Seattle International Film Festival
The Seattle International Film Festival is the largest film festival in the US, with more than 450 films (spread over 25 days) watched by around 150,000 people. It's impressively grand, and is one of the most exciting and widely-attended arts events Seattle has to offer.
Various locations

MAY 19

Not to be confused with the upcoming drama about the KKK, this is about the life of experimental and provocative artist Chris Burden, who is known for imprisoning himself in a locker for five days and having his assistant shoot him in the arm in the name of performance art.
Northwest Film Forum


Wonder Woman 3D & IMAX
So far, the only movie entirely about Wonder Woman is a 2009 direct-to-DVD animated film. Now, finally, we're about to get a live-action Hollywood blockbuster—with, thankfully, a woman at the helm (director Patty Jenkins). It will star former Israel Defense Forces trainer Gal Gadot, who played Wonder Woman in 2016's Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
Various locations

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