Posted by Larry Gleeson
From Special Screenings and international Oscar® submissions to captivating short films and powerful documentaries, tickets to AFI FEST 2022 will be available to purchase starting today, October 12 at 11:00 a.m. PT. Check out the film guide and full festival schedule now.
I have several films on my “must-see” list featured below. Stay tuned as the American Film Institute has combined AFI FEST and AFI DOCS this year in what is shaping up to be a spectacular showcase of film and cinema!
ALCARRAS – In Spain’s official Oscar® submission and the second feature from Carla Simón (SUMMER 1993, AFI FEST 2017), the close-knit Solé family, nestled in the rural village of Alcarràs, experiences an eventful summer when the livelihood of their peach orchard is threatened.
THE VOLCANO: RESCUE FROM WHAKAARI
In 2019, a volcano erupted on Whakaari in New Zealand without warning, raining down rocks and debris, and enveloping the island in a quiet, dark cloud of burning-hot steam. As the debris settled and onlookers gasped from the opposite shore, a rescue mission stirred into action; 47 tourists were trapped on the island, and another boat of tourists was just returning, having narrowly escaped. In this unbelievable new documentary from Academy Award® nominee Rory Kennedy (LAST DAYS IN VIETNAM, AFI FEST 2014), rescuers and survivors each recount their own version of the worst day of their lives, sharing what it means to cling to hope and life and to make impossible choices.
Adapted from Miriam Toews’ acclaimed novel and based on real events, Academy Award®-nominated director Sarah Polley (STORIES WE TELL) tells the riveting story of a tight-knit group of women who are part of an isolated religious community with an epidemic of sexual abuse. In the wake of this horrific discovery, they must decide to forgive their attackers or leave the colony forever. Shifting the lens away from the heinous crime and onto its ramifications sets the stage for a nuanced yet incisive examination of patriarchal oppression, religious imperatives, and conflicting values. Featuring a formiddable ensemble cast including Rooney Mara, Claire Foy, Jessie Buckley, and Frances McDormand.
The complete AFI FEST program includes 125 titles (7 Red Carpet Premieres, 6 Special Screenings, 12 Discovery, 12 World Cinema, 12 Documentary, 30 Short Film Competition, 43 AFI Conservatory and 3 Guest Artistic Director Selections). Of the official selections, 53% are directed by women, 32% are directed by BIPOC filmmakers and 11% are directed by LGBTQIA+ filmmakers. This year’s program represents 31 countries and includes six International Feature Oscar® submissions, ALCARRÀS (Spain), BARDO, FALSE CHRONICLE OF A HANDFUL OF TRUTHS (Mexico), CLOSE (Belgium), EO (Poland), JOYLAND (Pakistan) and SAINT OMER (France).
Returning filmmakers to AFI FEST include Lucien Castaing-Taylor (DE HUMANI CORPORIS FABRICA), Guillermo del Toro (GUILLERMO DEL TORO’S PINOCCHIO), Alice Diop (SAINT OMER), Quentin Dupieux (SMOKING CAUSES COUGHING/FUMER FAIT TOUSSER), Alain Gomis (REWIND & PLAY), Sam Green (32 SOUNDS), Luca Guadagnino (BONES AND ALL), Kristy Guevara-Flanagan (BODY PARTS), Mark Gustafson (GUILLERMO DEL TORO’S PINOCCHIO), Mia Hansen-Løve (ONE FINE MORNING/UN BEAU MATIN), Joanna Hogg (THE ETERNAL DAUGHTER), Alejandro González Iñárritu (BARDO, FALSE CHRONICLE OF A HANDFUL OF TRUTHS), Nikyatu Jusu (NANNY), Rory Kennedy (THE VOLCANO: RESCUE FROM WHAKAARI), Léa Mysius (THE FIVE DEVILS), Andrea Pallaoro (MONICA), Hlynur Pálmason (GODLAND/VANSKABTE LAND/VOLAÐA LAND), Jafar Panahi (NO BEARS), Verena Paravel (DE HUMANI CORPORIS FABRICA), Alice Rohrwacher (LE PUPILLE), Hong Sang-soo (WALK UP), Albert Serra (PACIFICTION), Carla Simón (ALCARRÀS), Jerzy Skolimowski (EO), Chris Smith (“SR.”), Steven Spielberg (THE FABELMANS) and Florian Zeller (THE SON).
AFI FEST 2022 will take place exclusively in person in Los Angeles from November 2-6. AFI members receive discounts on passes and tickets and other exclusive benefits. To become an AFI member, visit AFI.com/join/.
The World Premiere of Apple Original Film’s SELENA GOMEZ: MY MIND AND ME will open the festival and the U.S. premiere of Universal Pictures’ and Amblin Entertainment’s THE FABELMANS, directed by AFI Life Achievement Award recipient and Academy Award®-winning director Steven Spielberg, will close AFI FEST 2022. Additional Red Carpet Premieres include BARDO, FALSE CHRONICLE OF A HANDFUL OF TRUTHS, directed by Academy Award®-winning director Alejandro González Iñárritu; the U.S. Premiere of GUILLERMO DEL TORO’S PINOCCHIO, directed by Academy Award®-winning director Guillermo del Toro and Emmy Award® winner Mark Gustafson; LIVING, directed by Oliver Hermanus; SHE SAID, directed by Emmy Award®-winning director Maria Schrader; and THE SON, directed by Academy Award® winner Florian Zeller. Academy Award®-nominated filmmaker Ava DuVernay will serve as Guest Artistic Director at AFI FEST 2022 and will be showcasing three independent films amplifying the voices of women directors including HELLION (2014), directed by Kat Candler and starring Academy Award®-nominee Juliette Lewis and Aaron Paul; MOSQUITA Y MARI (2012) directed by Aurora Guerrero and YELLING TO THE SKY (2011), directed by Victoria Mahoney and starring Academy Award®-nominee Gabourey Sidibe and Zoë Kravitz.
RED CARPET PREMIERES
AFI rolls out the red carpet for the most anticipated films of the festival. Sure to be an exciting celebration of the best in film, the section delivers world-class filmmakers, talented actors and artisans, and a dose of Hollywood magic that can only be found at the iconic TCL Chinese Theatre.