Sunday, November 4, 2012

Chicago International Children's Film Festival Awards Announced #CICFF

Thank you for making the 2012 Festival a success!  
And, be sure to mark your calendars for the 30th annual Chicago International Children's Film Festival, October 25 - November 3, 2013.

The best in films for children, youth and families from around the world, right here in Chicago!  

Congratulations to filmmakers, juries and audiences for your hard work and dedication to creating and supporting the best in media for children and young adults. You inspire us! 

Check out the winners.   Many of these movies can be rented at Facets, purchased or watched on line.    I saw a fabulous northern European film, Iris, that I'd highly recommend for tweens and up.  

Iris is a young girl living a pampered life with her independent mother, Ester, in fast-paced Stockholm. Since Iris interacts mainly with adults, she feels quite mature for her age. However, when Ester, a professional artist, finds she must travel to Paris for a summer exhibition, there is no alternative but for Iris to return to the small, remote island of her mother’s youth to live with Uncle Elias and his family. Iris is suddenly thrust into a world of chores and children— a vast difference from the big city. Just as she warms to working hard and playing with other children, a town secret turns her views on family upside down.

With the help of her newfound friends, Iris begins to understand the true meaning of family and discovers who she really is as a young person. Screened in Swedish, with English subtitles.

Another friend of ours went to Ways to Live Forever (Spain) with her 11 year old son and he said it's the best film he's EVER seen.

Sam is a 12-year-old leukemia patient who chronicles his daily challenges with a self-narrated video diary. After befriending the more daring Felix, a fellow leukemia patient, Sam develops an elaborate bucket list of goals that he wishes to fulfill before he dies. Though Sam believes most of these tasks are impos- sible, it is Felix who encourages Sam that they are not out of reach.

With the help of his friends and family, Sam is able to break a world record, watch a horror movie, and even kiss a girl! But when Sam’s father discovers the list and video diary, his paternal denial gets in the way of Sam’s journey. Ultimately, father and son positively confront and recognize their feelings surrounding Sam’s illness.

Ways to Live Forever is an exploration of dying—both physically and spiritually—from a tween’s point of view, told with humor and grace. Featuring beautiful ensemble acting by Ben Chaplin, Greta Scacchi, Emilia Fox, Phyllida Law, Alex Etel, and Robbie Kay as Sam. Screened in English.

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