Cinetopia—Top Festival Films Play in Southern Michigan

Director Alan Rudolph will appear in person.
Director Alan Rudolph will appear in person.

May 31-June 10

If you are a fan of cinema or just looking to see something unique, Cinetopia offers you the chance to see films from top tier festivals around the world for a fraction of the big festival price. Festivals offer great films, but they are also a place where you can meet and talk with other cinephiles, see a film other festival goers have suggested, and hear in-person discussions with filmmakers. In addition to the films being played from Cannes, Berlin, Tribeca, and Sundance, there are local filmmakers to discover including the finalists of the Detroit Voices short film competition.

Photo from film Eighth Grade.

Photo from film Eighth Grade.

Opening this year’s festival will be Eighth Grade from Sundance Film Festival and a personal appearance by director Bo Burnham. Some top picks from other festivals include: We The Animals (a festival sell out at both Sundance and Tribeca); Nico from the Berlin Film Festival; Woman Walks Ahead featuring Jessica Chastain and written by one of my personal favorites, Steven Knight (Eastern Promises, Peaky Blinders); and Personal Problems — a rarely seen film by pioneering black artists Ishmael Reed and Bill Gunn — which has been newly restored by Kino Lorber and is fresh off a New York City art house run.

Photo from film Woman Walks Ahead.

Photo from film Woman Walks Ahead.

Cinetopia will feature a documentary on Hal Ashby, a much overlooked but seminal director of distinctly American films like Harold and Maude, Shampoo, and Coming Home.

Hal Ashby documentary poster.

Hal Ashby documentary poster.

And director Alan Rudolph will be highlighted. Rudolph will appear in person to discuss his new feature Ray Meets Helen starring Sandra Locke, Keith Carradine, Jennifer Tilly, and Samantha Mathis.

Photo from film Ray Meets Helen.

Photo from film Ray Meets Helen.

The festival will also be screening some of his past works including Choose Me and Remember My Name (screen debut of Alfre Woodard). Closing night will feature Tribeca’s opening night smash Love, Gilda, a look back at the life of comedienne Gilda Radner through rare footage and interviews with modern day comediennes like Amy Poehler.

Love, Gilda.

Love, Gilda.

I didn’t even get to mention all the great films in between, plus free screenings of Love Vincent and The Princess Bride or The Arab Film Festival whose offerings this year will focus on marginalized communities and voices, with films focusing on gender, sexuality, social justice, and community. Don’t take it for granted that all of these wonderful films will get general distribution. The Cinetopia Film Festival may be the only chance to see them.

Cinetopia, featuring 44 films at 10 venues, will run May 31st through June 10th.

Passes and tickets are on sale now at https://www.cinetopiafestival.org/ along with all the information you need about theaters, travel, updates on special guests, and much more.

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