Two days ago, the Milwaukee Film Festival announced the first set of selections – a collection of Mexican-based movies as a part of its Passport program – for its upcoming 2014 slate. It included border wars, politically and socially active documentaries and features, and brutally violent drug conflicts. You know; typical Disney material.
Today, however, the film festival announced a significantly different set of movies: the picks for its Rated K: for Kids program, aimed at movie lovers between ages three to 12 (though most everyone can still enjoy them).
The main feature length films include "Anina," Uruguay's Best Foreign Language Film selection for last year's Oscars about a girl peculiarly punished at school by being given a mysterious black envelope she can't open for a week; "Ernest & Celestine," the Oscar-nominated animated story of a bear and a mouse who become friends; Roberta Durrant's "Felix," about a young boy trying to become a jazz musician like his late father; and "Windstorm," a German film about a young girl who horse whispers her way into a special bond with a rascally stallion named ... well, Windstorm.
The Milwaukee Film Festival will also present a special 35mm sing-a-long rendition of the Disney classic "Mary Poppins." Those who come dressed in character will get free popcorn, while all parents in attendance will get a free break from their children singing "Let It Go" for the umpteenth hyper-septillionth time (hopefully ... ).
The Rated K: for Kids setlist also includes three shorts presentations. They include:
"Kids Shorts: Size Small" (ages 3+)
"Cloudy Goats" (Iran / 2014 / Director: Hamid Karimian)
"The Delirious Tales: The Chicken, the Elephant and the Snake" (France / 2012 / Director: Fabrice Luang-Vija)
"Goose Trouble" (Poland / 2013 / Director: Monika Dovnar)
"I Want My Hat Back" (USA / 2013 / Director: Galen Fott)
"Into Spring" (Netherlands / 2012 / Director: Udo Prinsen)
"My Little Chicken" (Canada / 2011 / Directors: Jeremy Diamond, Alex Hawley)
"My Mom is an Airplane" (Russia / 2013 / Director: Yulia Aronova)
"The Numberlys" (USA / 2013 / Directors: William Joyce, Brandon Oldenburg)
"Sky Color" (USA / 2012 / Director: Peter H. Reynolds)
"Slowly but Surely" (USA / 2012 / Director: Eli Balser)
"Winter Has Come" (Russia / 2012 / Director: Vassiliy Shlychkov)
"Kids Shorts: Size Medium" (ages 6+)
"At the Opera" (Argentina / 2010 / Director: Juan Pablo Zaramella)
"Beep, Beep, Beep" (Canada / 2012 / Director: Jeremy Diamond)
"The Dam Keeper" (USA / 2013 / Directors: Robert Kondo, Daisuke "Dice" Tsutsumi)
"The Mole at the Sea" (Russia / 2012 / Director: Anna Kadykova)
"Monster Symphony" (Germany / 2012 / Director: Kiana Naghshineh)
"Mushroom Monster" (Norway / 2013 / Director: Aleksander Leines Nordaas)
"The New Species" (Czech Republic / 2013 / Director: Kateřina Karhánková)
"Gnarly in Pink-Featuring the Pink Helmet Posse" (USA / 2014 / Directors: Benjamin Mullinkosson, Kristelle Laroche)
"Rabbit and Deer" (Hungary / 2013 / Director: Péter Vácz)
"The Whale Bird" (France / 2011 / Director: Sophie Roze)
"Wombo" (Germany / 2013 / Director: Daniel Acht)
"Kids Shorts" Size Large" (ages 9+)
"Cootie Contagion" (USA / 2012 / Director: Josh Smooha)
"Dancing with Style" (Netherlands / 2012 / Director: Xander de Boer)
"Girl with the World in her Hair" (United Kingdom / 2011 / Director: Debbie Howard)
"Hedgehogs and the City" (Latvia / 2013 / Director: Evalds Lacis)
"Matilde" (Italy / 2013 / Director: Vito Palmieri)
"My Strange Grandfather" (Russia / 2012 / Director: Dina Velikovskaya)
"Sniffles" (USA / 2013 / Directors: Jeremy Galante, David Cowles)
"Sweet Love" (Netherlands / 2012 / Director: Albert Jan van Rees)
"Twins in Bakery" (Japan / 2013 / Director: Mari Miyazawa)
It is worth noting that many of these features and shorts will come with subtitles. For more information on the films and age recommendations, visit the film festival's website. The festival runs from Sept. 25 through Oct. 9.
If the last two announcements have sufficiently whet your appetite for the rest of the lineup, the film festival will release the rest of its selections – and the rest of its program – on Sept. 6 at the free WMSE Backyard BBQ in Cathedral Square. The event runs from 4 until 8 p.m., with Los Straitjackets, Indigenous, Split Lip Rayfield and The Mike Benign Compulsion scheduled to perform.
In general, it will be a good day for Milwaukee entertainment.
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