Miami Film Festival 2017

The Festival was founded by the non-profit Film Society of Miami, Inc.. Since its first edition, which opened on February 3, 1984, , films have been screened in a variety of theaters throughout the greater Miami area. By the sixth Festival in 1989, the Olympia Theater at the Gusman Center had become the official residence. As the 1990s drew to a close, administration of the Festival was transferred Florida International University for a brief period, and then in October 2003 to Miami Dade College (MDC), where it has remained since.


Miami Dade College’s (MDC) acclaimed Miami Film Festival will showcase a selection of films directed by women during its 2017 program. Some of these films will have their world premiere at the Festival, which runs March 3-12, 2017. The 15 films highlighted below hail from all over the world and cover a variety of topics of interest, including two timely films about Cuba. The Miami Film Festival is the only major film festival produced and presented worldwide by a college or university.

World Premiere:

– “Embargo” / U.S.A. (Director: Jeri Rice). A documentary on the origins, history, impact and
evolution of the Cuban embargo, featuring rarely-seen archival interview footage with Robert F.
Kennedy, Jr., Sergei Khrushchev, Ted Sorensen, Lucie Arnaz and many others, as well as recently
declassified information. Executive produced by Miami’s Jorge M. Perez.

– “A Concrete Cinema” (“Un Cine En Concreto”) / Argentina (Director: Luz Ruciello). The quixtoic
story of Omar, a humble, fragile-looking man who pursues an impossible dream to build a movie
theatre for the children of his hometown in Entre Rios. With patience and resourcefulness, Omar
at first succeeds, only to have family circumstances force him to start over.
International Premiere:

– “Veinte Años” (“Vinte Anos”) / Cuba, Brazil, Costa Rica (Director: Alice de Andrade). In 1992,
Andrade documented the ritual of marriage in Cuba after the fall of the USSR. Twenty years later,
she revisits three families, in Havana, Miami and Costa Rica, where some are exiled. Dealing only
with love, the new film reflects on recent transformations in Cuban society.

North American Premiere:

– “Don’t Blame It On Your Karma!” (“No Culpes Al Karma De Lo Que Te Pasa Por Gilipollas”) /
Spain (Director: Maria Ripoll). A romantic comedy about Madrid-based feather-fashion designer
Sara, whose world is shaken up after a chance reunion with her long-lost high school crush after
13 years, who is now a pop music superstar. Cast: Veronica Echegui, Alex Garcia, David

– “Lipstick Under My Burkha” (“Lipstick Waale Sapne”) / India (Director: Alankrita Shrivastava).
Four stories of four women caught in a conservative society, each in search of a little freedom.
Cast: Konkona Sen Sharma, Shashank Arora, Plabita Borthakur.

– “Maria (And Everybody Else)” / (“María (Y Los Demás))” / Spain (Director: Nely Reguera). Since
her mother’s death, Maria has always taken care of her dad and her brothers. When her father
announces he will marry again, this time to a much younger woman, María feels her world begin to
fall apart. Cast: Bárbara Lennie, Pablo Derqui, Julián Villagrán

U.S. Premiere:

– “The Night My Mother Killed My Father” (“La Noche Que Mi Madre Mató a Mi Padre”) / Spain
(Director: Inés Paris). An actress in her 40s is prepared to do anything to recover her former glory
and get the part she craves in a new movie. A hysterical comedy about one crazy night of show
business desperation. Cast: Belén Rueda, Diego Peretti, Eduard Fernández.

– “The Empty Box” (“La Caja Vaciá”) / Mexico, France (Director: Claudia Sainte-Luce) A mixed
Mexican-Haitian young woman living in Mexico City is faced with the task of caring for her Haitian
father when his health begins to fail. They have never been close, and the bonds of family relations
are about to undergo a severe test. Cast: Claudia Sainte-Luce, Jimmy Jean-Louis, Pablo Sigal

– “The Grownups” (“Los Niños”) / Chile, The Netherlands (Director: Maite Alberdi). Anita, Rita,
Ricardo, and Andrés are four “young adults” attending a school for children with Down syndrome
for 40 years. They yearn for freedoms at a more personal level, but their society is ill-equipped to
handle their desire for more independence.

Florida Premiere:

– “Carrie Pilby” / U.S.A. (Director: Susan Johnson). A poignant and very funny dramedy about a
highly intelligent young woman who struggles to make sense of the world as it relates to mortality,
relationships, sex, and just simply leaving her apartment. Cast: Bel Powley, Nathan Lane, Jason
Ritter, Gabriel Byrne.

– “Ella Brennan: Commanding The Table” / U.S.A. (Director: Leslie Iwerks). The world renowned
restaurateur Ella Brennan is the matriarch of a Creole-flavored dining dynasty dating back over half
a century. Culinary luminaries such as Daniel Boulud, Emeril Lagasse, Danny Meyer and Tim and
Nina Zagat reflect on the success of Brennan’s famed New Orleans establishment Commander’s

– “League of Exotique Dancers” / Canada, UK, U.S.A (Director: Rama Rau). A documentary that
peels off the layers of glitter to expose the sexism, racism and widespread stigma faced by
Burlesque striptease performers in the heyday of the 1960s and 70s. Many years later, these
classic performers are still kicking up a storm.

– “Mr. Chibbs” / U.S.A. (Director: Jill Campbell). Kenny Anderson, a former New York City highschool
basketball prodigy and NBA All-Star, loses a cherished coaching position, sending him into
a midlife crisis. From his home base in South Florida, he strives to regain his footing and rebuild
his family life.

– “Visitor’s Day” / U.S.A (Director: Nicole Opper). Sixteen-year-old Juan Carlos, living in a boy’s
home in Mexico City, undergoes the most transformative year of his life, as he finds strength to
leave his comfort zone, overcome his sense of abandonment and forgive his father for the past.

– “Take My Nose…Please!” / Mexico, U.S.A. (Director: Joan Kron). Two actors take a seriously
funny and surprisingly moving look at the pressures on women in contemporary society to be
attractive, and our deeply ambivalent attitude toward aesthetic surgery.

The 34th Miami Film Festival will take place March 3-12, 2017. Advance ticket vouchers on sale now
for $13, only $10 for Miami Film Society members, at, or by calling 1-844-
565-6433 (MIFF). Regular tickets will go on sale February 10. For membership opportunities or more
information, please email or call 305-237-FILM (3456).
About Miami Dade College’s Miami Film Festival

Celebrating its 34th anniversary March 3 – 12, 2017, Miami Dade College’s Miami Film Festival is
considered the preeminent film festival for showcasing Ibero-American cinema in the U.S., and a major
launch pad for all international and documentary cinema. The annual Festival, produced and presented by
Miami Dade College, attracts more than 60,000 audience members and more than 400 filmmakers,
producers, talent and industry professionals. It is the only major festival housed within a college or
university. In the last five years, the Festival has screened films from more than 60 countries, including 300
World, International, North American, U.S. and East Coast Premieres. The Festival’s special focus on Ibero-
American cinema has made the Festival a natural gateway for the discovery of new talent from this diverse
territory. The Festival also offers unparalleled educational opportunities to film students and the community at large. Additionally, every October, the Festival hosts a mid-season festival titled GEMS, showcasing the season’s finest new cinematic works. Major sponsors of the 2017 Festival include Knight Foundation, Lexus and Miami-Dade County. For more information, visit or call 305-237-FILM (3456).


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