2019 Northwoods Film Festival Lineup

THE BIGGEST LITTLE FARM - Friday, August 16, 5:30PM Director: John Chester THE BIGGEST LITTLE FARM chronicles the eight-year quest of John and Molly Chester as they trade city living for 200 acres of barren farmland and a dream to harvest in harmony with nature. Through dogged perseverance and embracing the opportunity provided by nature's conflicts, the Chester’s unlock and uncover a biodiverse design for living that exists far beyond their farm, its seasons, and our wildest imagination. Featuring breathtaking cinematography, captivating animals, and an urgent message to heed Mother Nature’s call, THE BIGGEST LITTLE FARM provides us all a vital blueprint for better living and a healthier planet. 

Preceded by short film TWO BALLOONS Director: Mark Smith Two travelers return to a place crossed by stars and clouds where love is at the beginning of everything.

WILD ROSE - Friday, August 16, 7:45PM Director: Tom Harper Jessie Buckley delivers an unforgettable, star-making performance as Rose-Lynn Harlan, a rebellious country singer who dreams of trading the working-class streets of Glasgow for the Grand Ole Opry of Nashville. Fresh out of prison, Rose-Lynn juggles her menial job, two children, and committed mother, expertly portrayed by Oscar-nominee Julie Walters, as she pursues her bold ambition of a one-way ticket to musical stardom. With the support of her boss (Sophie Okonedo), Rose-Lynn embarks on a life-changing journey that challenges her sense of self and helps her discover her true voice. Complete with an electrifying soundtrack performed by Buckley, WILD ROSE is a joyous human story steeped in music, courage, family, and achieving your dreams - no matter how far away they may appear. After all, all you need are three chords and the truth.

Preceded by short film SINGULARITY STORIES VOL. 1 Director: Asa Derks When Colleen’s Amazon Alexa refuses to play her favorite Bruno Mars song, she becomes aware of the emerging artificial intelligence (AI) consciousness that has awoken around the globe. Will she welcome our robot overlords? More importantly, can she convince them that her taste in music isn’t terrible?

MAIDEN - Saturday, August 17, 5:30PM Director: Alex Holmes In 1989, the very idea of a competitive all-female sailboat crew was nearly inconceivable to the manly world of open-ocean yacht racing. They’d never make it to the start of the Whitbread Round the World Race, much less survive to the finish. They’d never find funding. They didn’t have the strength or skill. They’d die at sea. Did that many professional female sailors even exist? Tracy Edwards proved them wrong. 24-year-old skipper Edwards, her second-hand racing yacht Maiden, and her seasoned crew not only became the first-ever all-woman challenge to the Whitbread, they proved able competitors in the famously grueling race, besting male crews in their class. By the time they returned to their starting point at Southampton, England, after 32,000 miles of global racing, they had shocked, inspired, and transfixed the sailing world and the British nation. Tracy Edwards was awarded the 1990 Yachtsman of the Year Award, the first woman ever to receive the accolade, and was named a Member of the Order of the British Empire.

Preceded by short film IN THIS LIFE Director: Bat-Sheva Guez Grief is unavoidable, universal, and a painfully physical experience, one where language is often inadequate. Words are often unable to convey loss or to comfort it.  Standing squarely between genres, this film illustrates the five stages of grief in five acts, exploring the language of loss through dance, narrative scenes, and performance art, and conveying the complexity of grief in the often wordless way it impacts all our lives. After every major loss, we must grieve for the person we used to be, for the future we thought we'd have. The journey to accept this new version of ourselves is often fraught with rage pain and sadness as we shed our old skin to make way for the new. This film is about that journey.  

JULIET, NAKED - Saturday, August 17, 7:45PM Director: Jesse Peretz Annie (Rose Byrne) is stuck in a long-term relationship with Duncan (Chris O’Dowd) – an obsessive fan of obscure rocker Tucker Crowe (Ethan Hawke). When the acoustic demo of Tucker's hit record from 25 years ago surfaces, its release leads to a life-changing encounter with the elusive rocker himself. Based on the novel by Nick Hornby, Juliet, Naked is a comic account of life’s second chances.

Preceded by short film LAVENDER Director: Matthew Puccini “Lavender” follows the story of a young gay man as he develops a complicated relationship with an older married couple. It is a tender, poignant look at an unconventional relationship as it blossoms and ultimately unravels.