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Ride the Lightning: MVFF37 is Distinctly Heavy (Metal) on Awards Season Contenders

Turning an ageless 37, the Mill Valley Film Festival, which open tomorrow (runs until October. 14th), continues to beat to a tune of its own. With the four members of Metallica serving as the Artists in Residence, thematically this year is “heavy” on award season content. While Telluride, TIFF, NYFF serve as major fall season tastemakers, MVFF is the most important one in the Bay Area in terms of visibility and campaigning due to the number of Academy members living in Northern California. And while Tommy Lee Jones’ The Homesman starring Hillary Swank paired with Jones and Jason Reitman’s Men, Women & Children are receiving spotlight showings, it’s titles such as Morten Tyldum’s The Imitation Game, Jean Marc Vallee’s Wild, Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher, James Marsh’s The Theory of Everything, Theodore Melfi’s St.Vincent, Dan Gilroy’s Nightcrawler and Damian Chazelle’s Whiplash that are receiving further traction.

And of course, the sprinkling of film festival goodness extends itself to other noteworthy Sundance, Berlin, Cannes, Venice and Toronto titles such as Yann Demange’s ‘71, Dominik Graff’s Beloved Sisters, Daniel Wolfe’s Catch Me Daddy, Rolf de Heer’s Charlie’s Country, Olivier Assayas’ Clouds of Sils Maria, Ruben Ostlund’s Force Majeure, Lynn Shelton’s Laggies, Xavier Dolan’s Mommy, Mike Leigh’s Mr Turner, Isao Takahata’s The Tale of Princess Kaguya, Abderrahmane Sissako’s Timbuktu, and the affecting moral drama from our favorite Belgians in Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne’s Two Days, One Night. Other spotlights include a celebration of Eddie Redmayne (touring with The Theory of Everything) and Elle Fanning (touring with Low Down) as well as tributes to Laura Dern and Chuck Workman.

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You may also like...'s award guru Yama Rahimi is a San Francisco-based Afghan-American artist and filmmaker. Apart from being a contributing special feature writer for the site, he directed the short films Object of Affection ('03), Chori Foroosh ('06) and the feature length documentary film Afghanistan ('10). His top three of 2019 include: Bong Joon-ho's Parasite, Todd Phillips' Joker and Robert Eggers' The Lighthouse.

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