Philadelphia Film Festival kicks off this week

October 15, 2012 – Good news for Philly’s film fans: The 21st Philadelphia Film Festival, sponsored by the Philadelphia Film Society begins this week. The 11-day event kicks off on Thursday, October 18, and plays out on several theater screens throughout the Greater Philadelphia region.

The festival opens with locally shot “Silver Linings Playbook”, starring Bradley Cooper and Robert DeNiro. The film, which focuses on a former high school teacher who returns home to rebuild his life after spending time in a mental institution, is generating plenty of award buzz. The festival will close with “Flight”, starring Denzel Washington as the seasoned airline pilot who crash-lands his plane after a mid-air catastrophe, miraculously saving nearly everybody on board.

In between, the festival features several classic films, several films locally produced by independent directors, and five centerpiece screenings.  The centerpiece screenings include “Cloud Atlas”, a sci-fi drama with a star-studded cast, “Hyde Park on the Hudson”, an intimate look into FDR’s extramarital affair, “Not Fade Away”, a coming of age tale about three young men who form a band in the 60s, “Quartet”, Dustin Hoffman’s directorial debut about four aging retired opera singers, and “Stand Up Guys”, an action comedy starring Al Pacino, Christopher Walken and Alan Arkin.

Screenings will be held at the Ritz East, the Ritz Bourse, the Rave University Six, Gershman Y at the University of the Arts, the Zellerbach Theater at the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, and the Prince Music Theater.

For a full line up of films and locations, visit filmadelphia.org/festival. I’ll be working the festival on October 20 at the Rave University Six, October 25 at the Prince Music Theater and October 27 at the Ritz Bourse, so watch for updates next week.

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