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    MDFF OPENING NIGHT SHORTS

    Opens Wednesday, May 2

    This program brings together a cross-section of shorts carefully selected for Opening Night eyes. Let the festivities begin!

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    SICKIES MAKING FILMS

    Opens Thursday, May 3

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    I AM NOT A WITCH

    Opens Thursday, May 3 | 1 hr 38 min

    Following a banal incident in her local village in Africa, 8-year old girl Shula is accused of witchcraft. After a short trial she is found guilty, taken into state custody and exiled to a witch camp in the middle of a desert. At the camp she takes part in an initiation ceremony where she is shown the rules surrounding her new life as a witch. Like the other residents, Shula is tied to a ribbon which is attached to a coil that perches in a large tree. She is told that should she ever cut the ribbon, she'll be cursed and transformed into a goat.

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    GENDERBENDE

    Opens Thursday, May 3

    A compelling feature length documentary about five young people who neither feel male nor female, but rather somewhere in between.

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    MDFF NARRATIVE SHORTS

    Opens Thursday, May 3

    If you're looking for an engaging story told from beginning to middle to end with skill and rigor, this is your shorts program. From South Africa, to Iran, to Nigeria, to Australia to the US. . .this is storytelling! Enjoy.

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    BLACK MOTHER

    Opens Thursday, May 3 | 1 hr 17 min

    A spiritually poetic and intimately political depiction of contemporary Jamaica.

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    MILFORD GRAVES FULL MANTIS

    Opens Thursday, May 3

    Milford Graves Full Mantis weaves blistering performance footage from Europe, Japan, and the U.S. with a sublimely restrained, intimate glimpse into a world-renowned jazz percussionist’s singular voice and complex cosmology.

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    SOLLERS POINT

    Opens Thursday, May 3

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    CANIBA

    Opens Thursday, May 3 | 1 hr 30 min

    Caniba is a fresco about flesh and desire. It reflects on the discomfiting significance of cannibalism in human existence through the prism of one Japanese man, Issei Sagawa, and his mysterious relationship with his brother, Jun Sagawa.

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    FATHER'S KINGDOM

    Opens Thursday, May 3 | 1 hr 36 min

    This is the story of Father Divine and the Peace Mission Movement

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    ON HER SHOULDERS

    Opens Thursday, May 3

    Nadia Murad, a 23-year-old Yazidi, survived genocide and sexual slavery committed by ISIS. Repeating her story to politicians and media, this ordinary girl finds herself thrust onto the world stage as the voice of her people. Away from the podium, she must navigate bureaucracy, fame and people's good intentions.

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    MDFF PSYCHEDELIC TANGO SHORTS

    Opens Thursday, May 3

    The softer side of WTF. This collection of transdimensional shorts blurs lines of spacetime with green screen, horror, puppets, virtual realities, and good old fashioned reincarnation.

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    HUMAN AFFAIRS

    Opens Thursday, May 3 | 1 hr 22 min

    This richly earnest drama follows Geneviève, a surrogate who must reckon with her ambivalence about the pregnancy and her precarious feelings for the parents-to-be

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    SHAKEDOWN

    Opens Thursday, May 3

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    MADELINE'S MADELINE

    Opens Thursday, May 3 | 1 hr 34 min

    A theater director's latest project takes on a life of its own when her young star takes her performance too seriously.

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    NEVER GOIN' BACK

    Opens Thursday, May 3

    Jessie and Angela, high school dropout BFFs, are taking a week off to chill at the beach. Too bad their house got robbed, rent’s due, they’re about to get fired and they’re broke. Now they've gotta avoid eviction, stay out of jail and get to the beach, no matter what!!!

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    MDFF WTF SHORTS

    Opens Thursday, May 3

    MdFF's signature shorts program -- a selection that could make you a) scratch your head, b) wet yourself, or c) hurl -- is the place for people who like to look at the world guts out and eyes wide!

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    MDFF CHARACTER STUDY SHORTS

    Opens Friday, May 4

    Whether you're a psychiatrist, a sociopath, or just an innocent escapist we promise you that diving into the realities of the rich characters in this shorts program will be worth your while.

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    ¡LAS SANDINISTAS!

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 34 min

    ¡Las Sandinistas! uncovers the disappearing stories of women who shattered barriers to lead combat and social reform during Nicaragua’s 1979 Sandinista Revolution, and who continue to lead Nicaragua’s current struggle for democracy and equality.

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    AMÉRICA

    Opens Friday, May 4

    Lisa, a beautiful young Russian woman, is married to Victor, a Portuguese. Fernanda, the Spanish ex-wife of Victor, taking advantage of the coming wave of illegal immigrants in Portugal, wants to do business with false passports. Since then, and to Lisa's desperation, her home becomes a halfway house for immigrants of various nationalities and different races, all in search of a better future. Among them is Andrei, a young Ukrainian orthopedist who is wanted by the Russian mafia. Andrei falls in love with Lisa, who sees in him the opportunity to get out of that life. But things are not simple.

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    THE ISLAND

    Opens Friday, May 4

    An Intimate look at the complex human mosaic of the French Hospital St. Louis- a hospice for the terminally ill, located on the tense border between East and West Jerusalem opposite the old city walls.

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    MDFF DOCUMENTARY SHORTS

    Opens Friday, May 4

    From Nazi's in Madison Square Garden 1939 to Arabbers and Amish in Baltimore to quilters in rural Alabama, each documentary in this collection explores the rich tapestry of America, it's histories, it's tragedies, its eccentrics, its possiblities.

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    THE GREAT PRETENDER

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 11 min

    The lives of a French theater director, her ex-boyfriend, and the two actors playing them intersect dramatically.

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    AUGUST AT AKIKO'S

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 15 min

    The musician Alex Zhang Hungtai returns to Hawaii. He’s been away for a long time and is completely uprooted. The older woman Akiko takes him under her wing and teaches him how to handle 'ha', the spirit that links him to his birthplace. A dreamy debut with hidden, deep emotions.

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    STRANGE COLOURS

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 25 min

    Milena travels to a remote opal mining community to see her estranged, ill father. Lost and alone, she falls into his bewildering world, where men escape society and share ideals of freedom. Soon, he doesn’t want her to leave. Stuck in time, father and daughter try to mend their fractured bond, but their connection is fragile, like the strange, colourful gems he digs up from the earth.

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    CHARGED SPACES SHORTS

    Opens Friday, May 4

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    MDFF ANIMATED SHORTS

    Opens Friday, May 4

    A gorgeous collection of animated shorts that lets you experience their richness with the skin of your eyes.

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    CHARM CITY

    Opens Friday, May 4

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    ALANIS

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 22 min

    A young Buenos Aires mother and sex worker suffers the hypocrisy of the laws that are supposed to protect her, in this compelling, profoundly political drama about the dismal choices foisted upon vulnerable women.

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    FIVE FINGERS FOR MARSEILLES

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 2 hrs

    Twenty years ago, the young 'Five Fingers' fought for the rural town of Marseilles, against brutal police oppression. Now, after fleeing in disgrace, freedom-fighter-turned-'outlaw' Tau returns to Marseilles, seeking only a peaceful pastoral life. When he finds the town under new threat, he must reluctantly fight to free it. can he free himself from his past? Will the Five Fingers stand again?

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    MDFF UNORTHO-DOCS SHORTS

    Opens Friday, May 4

    This innovative collection plays in the grey, showcasing works on the cusp of multiple genres. Beyond mere documentary, these works astutely blend aspects of narrative, animation, comedy, or the avant-garde into markedly nontraditional frameworks.

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    I, OLGA HEPNAROVA

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 46 min

    Olga is a complex young woman desperate to break free from her unfeeling family and social conventions. With her Louise Brooks-like tomboyish looks she drags herself, chain-smoking, from one job to another until she appears to find her niche as a truck driver. Although she has female lovers she does not form a bond with any of them; instead she clashes, time and again, venting herself in wordless emotional outbursts and other behavioural extremes.

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    CLARA'S GHOST

    Opens Friday, May 4

    Set over the course of a single evening at the Reynolds’ family home in Connecticut, Clara, fed up with the constant ribbing from her self-absorbed showbiz family, finds solace in and guidance from the supernatural force she believes is haunting her.

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    THE PAIN OF OTHERS

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 11 min

    Tens of thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands, say they have it. But the mainstream medical community says Morgellons is not a disease at all, but a delusion propagated and reinforced by social media. “It’s all in your head,” they say. The Pain of Others is a found footage documentary about Morgellons, a mysterious illness whose sufferers say they have parasites under the skin, long colored fibers emerging from lesions, and a host of other bizarre symptoms which could be borrowed from a horror film.

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    NANCY

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 27 min

    Nancy becomes increasingly convinced she was kidnapped as a child. When she meets a couple whose daughter went missing thirty years ago, reasonable doubts give way to willful belief.

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    WOBBLE PALACE

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 25 min

    A couple on the verge of a nervous break-up decide to split their home over the weekend and test the waters of independence.

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    TIME TRIAL

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 21 min

    Time Trial takes us into the final races of cyclist David Millar’s career, leading up to his last encounter with the Tour de France. We go inside the peloton, we’re pushed up impossible climbs and forced down rapid descents, we lie alongside him in his hotel room in post-race agony. We ride in the support car, the source of comfort, supplies and fleeting relief from the cold. And we know that every mile traveled is a mile closer to the end.

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    THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 30 min | Not Rated

    1993: after being caught having sex with the prom queen, a girl is forced into a gay conversion therapy center.

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    LET THE CORPSES TAN

    Opens Friday, May 4 | 1 hr 32 min

    Every summer, Luce, an eccentric 50-something painter, spends her time in a small and isolated township, which lies in ruins in southern France, surrounded by guests. This summer, these guests are Max Bernier (an old flame, author and alcoholic), her current squeeze (a lawyer named Bisorgueil), and three friends of his whom she has yet to meet: Rhino, Gros and Alex. After finishing their shopping in town, these three unknowns attack an armored truck and make off with 250 kg of gold. They then return to Luce's place, counting on her to hide them until the end of the summer... But certain events will throw a spanner in the works, and the hamlet will transform itself into a battlefield over the course of a very long and turbulent day.

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    LAND BEFORE TIME

    Opens Saturday, May 5 | Rated G

    An orphaned brontosaurus named Littlefoot sets off in search of the legendary Great Valley. A land of lush vegetation where the dinosaurs can thrive and live in peace. Along the way he meets four other young dinosaurs, each onea different species, and they encounter several obstacles as they learn to worktogether in order to survive.

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    MDFF DIVERGING FORMS SHORTS

    Opens Saturday, May 5

    This program of short films presents unique angles in the exploration of surface, portrait and pattern. The narrative is a personal puzzle - a reimagination of passage, line, and landscape.

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    MATANGI / MAYA / M.I.A.

    Opens Saturday, May 5 | 1 hr 35 min

    Drawn from a never before seen cache of personal footage spanning decades, this is an intimate portrait of the Sri Lankan artist and musician who continues to shatter conventions.

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    THIS IS HOME

    Opens Saturday, May 5

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    WE THE ANIMALS

    Opens Saturday, May 5

    Us three, us brothers, us kings. Manny, Joel and Jonah tear their way through childhood and push against the volatile love of their parents. As Manny and Joel grow into versions of their father and Ma dreams of escape, Jonah, the youngest, embraces an imagined world all his own.

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    FIRST REFORMED

    Opens Saturday, May 5 | 1 hr 48 min

    Reverend Ernst Toller is a solitary, middle-aged parish pastor at a small Dutch Reform church in upstate New York on the cusp of celebrating its 250th anniversary. Once a stop on the Underground Railroad, the church is now a tourist attraction catering to a dwindling congregation, eclipsed by its nearby parent church, Abundant Life, with its state-of-the-art facilities and 5,000-strong flock. When a pregnant parishioner asks Reverend Toller to counsel her husband, a radical environmentalist, the clergyman finds himself plunged into his own tormented past, and equally despairing future, until he finds redemption in an act of grandiose violence.

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    DON’T LEAVE HOME

    Opens Saturday, May 5 | 1 hr 26 min

    An American artist’s obsession with a disturbing urban legend leads her to an investigation of the story’s origins at the crumbling estate of a reclusive painter in Ireland.

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    ALLOY ORCHESTRA PRESENTS: A PAGE OF MADNESS

    Opens Sunday, May 6

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    WON'T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR

    Opens Sunday, May 6

    Fred Rogers used puppets and play to explore complex social issues: race, disability, equality and tragedy, helping form the American concept of childhood. He spoke directly to children and they responded enthusiastically. Yet today, his impact is unclear. Have we lived up to Fred's ideal of good neighbors?

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    MDFF 2018 CLOSING NIGHT AND PARTY

    Opens Sunday, May 6

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    EDWARD II

    Opens Thursday, May 24 | 1 hr 30 min | Rated R

    In this Derek Jarman version of Christopher Marlowe's Elizabethan drama, in modern costumes and settings, Plantagenet king Edward II hands the power-craving nobility the perfect excuse by taking as lover besides his diplomatic wife, the French princess Isabel, not an acceptable lady at court but the ambitious Piers Gaveston, who uses his favor in bed even to wield political influence - the stage is set for a palace revolt which sends the gay pair from the throne to a terminal torture dungeon.