Tag Archives: 55th SFIFF

Big Screen Berkeley: Unfair World

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The Greek people have been through a lot over the past few years: the whipping boys of European austerity, they’ve suffered brutal wage cuts, deep job losses, and endless benefit takeaways since the country’s slow motion debt crisis began in 2009. The social, economic, and emotional fallout of their national crisis is the unspoken subtext of writer-director Filippo Tsito’s brutally frank drachma — er, drama — Unfair World, screening at Pacific Film Archive as part of the San Francisco International Film Festival at 8:15 pm on Sunday, April 29th.

Sotiris (Antonis Kafetzopoulos) is an Athens policeman at the end of his tether. Though honest to a fault, he also feels deep empathy for the petty thieves and insurance scammers he’s tasked to interrogate — after all, times are hard, and people must do what they can to survive. When off duty he drinks to forget, tippling enough ouzo to send him toppling from his favorite park bench on a nightly basis. … Continue reading »

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Opening: 55th San Francisco International Film Festival

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If it’s spring in the Bay Area, it’s time once again for the San Francisco International Film Festival. While the Festival proper commences with appropriate pomp and circumstance this coming Thursday at San Francisco’s Castro Theatre, its East Bay offerings begin the following day, Friday, April 20th, with a pair of down-to-Earth Northern European character studies screening at Pacific Film Archive.

Up first, at 6:30 pm, is German writer-director Ulrich Köhler’s Sleeping Sickness (Schlafkrankheit), winner of the Silver Bear at last year’s Berlin International Film Festival. Set in the West African republic of Cameroon, it’s an elliptical examination of the uneasy relationship between the First and Third Worlds, a film that doesn’t tip its hand until the very last frame — and arguably not even then. … Continue reading »

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