Tribeca Movie Review: The Tree

The following movie was reviewed at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival.

The Tree

The Tree (El Árbol)
World Documentary Competition
2006, Argentina
Dir: Gustavo Fontán

Can memories of an entire lifetime be harnessed within one single object of affection? Can moments long ago experienced be recalled and relived with the help of a familiar companion? What happens when a family has to make a decision that could alter them forever? Writer-turned-filmmaker Gustavo Fontán attempts to carefully and lovingly answer these questions in his impressive and poetic film essay The Tree.
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The following movie was screened at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival.

Between Heaven and Earth

Between Heaven and Earth
World Documentary Competition
2006, Netherlands
Dir: Frank van den Engel, Masja Novikova

In Uzbekistan, the circus is long-standing tradition, highly regarded as an important part of Uzbekistani society. Between Heaven and Earth takes a glimpse at the lives of two circus families, with two very distinct positions on life. The heads of the families, Achat and Tursun Ali, have been dear friends for years. Tursun Ali actually trained with Achat to become a “strong man.” These men have a very high opinion of each other, and understand what each has gone through in their tumultuous lives.

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The following movie was reviewed at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival.

The Year My Parents Went on Vacation

The Year My Parents Went on Vacation (O Ano em que Meus Pais Saíram de Férias)
World Narrative Competition
2006, Brazil
Dir: Cao Hamburger

The year was 1970. Man had recently landed on the moon and Pelé had scored his one thousandth goal. In Brazil, times were turbulent and agitated. The end of the 60’s ushered in a period of regime change, with the military dictatorship under General Emílio Garrastazu Médici taking flagrant attacks on the rights of all civilians and their free expression. But 12 year-old Mauro was not concerned with such dilemmas. He had bigger fish to fry. He had the 1970 World Cup to look forward to, where Brazil was billed as the favorite to take home the trophy.
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Tribeca Movie Review: The Sugar Curtain

The following movie was seen at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival:

The Sugar Curtain

The Sugar Curtain (El Telón de Azúcar)
World Documentary Competition
2006, Cuba, France, Spain
Dir: Camila Guzmán Urzúa

A daring look at the remnants of a failed dream, The Sugar Curtain takes a personal route and looks at director Camila Guzmán Urzúa’s experience as a child during the “Golden Age” of Cuban Communism. The dream was that of forming a perfectly functioning community under the tenants of a Communism molded to fit the people of Cuba. When it crumbled, so did the aspirations of a generation brought up to believe they were the future builders of their society.
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Tribeca Movie Review: Bomb It

The following movie was reviewed at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival:

Bomb It

Bomb It
World Documentary Competition
2007, U.S.A.
Dir: John Reiss

Coming at you with lightning speed, Bomb It explodes onto the screen, heralding its arrival and offering a heaping dose of invigorating energy surrounding the world of graffiti, and how that world is split up and examined. Globetrotting to some of the most sprawling metropolises on the planet, such as Tokyo, SÃ¥o Paolo, New York, London, Capetown, and Berlin, the film is a nonstop study on what makes graffiti what it is and why it’s still ticking today.
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Tribeca Movie Review: Vivere

The following movie was reviewed at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival:

Vivere

Vivere
World Narrative Competition
2007, Germany
Dir: Angelina Maccarone

A time for celebration and unity, Christmas Eve evokes thoughts of family gatherings and spirited festivities. The characters in Vivere aren’t fortunate enough to enjoy such pleasures, as they travel together on the night of said jubilee in an attempt to find themselves, and ultimately, find a way out of their personal angst. Director Angelina Maccarone creates an intertwined story of three women, of different generations, that come together to save each other.

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Tribeca Movie Review: Times and Winds

The following movie was reviewed at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival:

Times and Winds

Times and Winds
World Narrative Competition
2006, Turkey
Reha Erdem

An exquisitely paced film, Times and Winds focuses on the daily lives of three preteens stuck in a mountain village in Turkey. Reha Erdem, of A Run For Money (1999) and What is a Human Anyway? (2004) fame, paints a magnificent story of longing and deep emotion as we travel along a mythic landscape following Ömer, Yakup, and Yildiz through their coming of age moments.
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Tribeca Movie Review: Gardener of Eden

The following movie was reviewed at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival:

Gardener of Eden

Gardener of Eden
World Narrative Competition
2007, U.S.A.
Dir: Kevin Connolly

Upon first hearing about Gardener of Eden, I was interested in seeing what such great young talents the likes of Lukas Haas and Giovanni Ribisi would bring forth to the table in this, the directorial debut from actor Kevin Connolly, known for his role in Entourage. Nevertheless, to my utter disappointment, these talents were sorely misused and wasted in the film.

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Movie Review: Half Moon

The following movie was reviewed at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival:

Half Moon

Half Moon (Niwemang)
World Narrative Competition
2006, Iran, Iraq, Austria, France
Bahman Ghobadi

Celebrated filmmaker, Bahman Ghobadi, returns with this meditative portrayal on life after the Saddam Hussein regime in Kurdistan, and how the characters in his film deal with the restraints still placed upon them today. The first Kurdish director in the history of Iranian cinema, Ghobadi has come to prominence and is recognized as one of the leading figures in the New Iranian cinema. With films such as A Time for Drunken Horses (2000) and Turtles Can Fly (2004), Ghobadi has achieved a careful and loving examination of his own people and their daily lives. These stories are not overt political statements; they present small groups of characters coping with an ever-changing modern Iran and Iraq.

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Tribeca Movie Review: Santiago

Santiago

The following film was reviewed at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival.

Santiago
World Documentary Competition
2007, Brazil
Dir: Joåo Moriera Salles

Director of several award winning documentary series such as Blues (1989) and America (1990) in his home country of Brazil, Joåo Salles is best known for his in depth studies on contemporary Latin American culture, as well as being the brother of Walter Salles. For his next project, Salles decided to tackle an issue of smaller proportions, yet with a much larger personal significance for him. The subject of the film was to be Santiago, the butler who lived at his home in Brazil and who served him and his family for thirty years.

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