Here are four films that will be available during this year’s SFFilm Festival. We’ve got a drama with one foot in Mexico and the other in the U.S., an animated fantasy for adults, a Mexican documentary, and a so-called comedy.
A Son of Monarchs
This story of a young man between two countries doesn’t really have much of a story, and I have no problem about that. Mendel was born and raised in Michoacán, where he and his older brother were amazed by the monarch butterflies that migrated through their neightborhood. They also saw their parents’ accidental deaths. Now the adult Mendel lives in New York as a biologist, studying those same monarchs. Standing between two cultures, he doesn’t always know where he belongs. A visual and audio treat that brings you into different worlds while Mendel deals with both of them.
Part of the Sloan Science on Screen program. You can stream the film any time throughout the festival.
This beautiful, animated feature about people trying to save mythological creatures is absolutely not for children. Set in 1960s, poachers hunt for these rare and sometimes magical animals. Meanwhile, the Pentagon wants them for war. A handful of heroes attempt to bring them to a special zoo, where they might be saved…but also imprisoned. The hand-drawn animation is not Disney-standard but strikingly dramatic. The film contains sex and some very grisly violence.
You can stream the film at anytime within the run of the Festival. After the movie is over, you can watch writer/director Dash Shaw receive the Festival’s Persistence of Vision Award.
B- The Spokeswoman
Luciana Kaplan’s documentary follows Maria de Jesús Patricio as she campaigns to be the first indigenous woman to run the Mexican presidency. She’s honest and charismatic. Nevertheless, going up against centuries of corruption, exploitation, racism, and violence, it’s a tough fight. The film is occasionally stirring and dramatic, but the film has too many speeches, strategy meetings, and debates. If you’re not fluent in Spanish, you’ll likely spend most of your time reading subtitles.
The Spokeswoman will be available throughout the entire run of the festival.
The opening scene of this teenage comedy is absolutely hilarious. You know how the sequence will end and yet it still surprises and makes you laugh. But then the quality goes down fast. The movie overdoes everything to the point where it stops being funny and just becomes annoying. Whatever laughs there are (after that opening sequence) are frequently cruel and rarely funny.
If you really want to see Supercool on the big screen, the Festival will play the film Saturday night, April 17, 9:30, at the Fort Mason Flix drive-in. You can also stream the movie throughout the run of the Festival.