Seattle International Film Festival 2018: Face The Music

SIFF, KEXP Presents

The line-up has just been announced for the 44th annual Seattle International Film Festival, featuring 433 films representing 90 countries and including 168 features (plus 4 secret films), 66 documentaries, 10 archival films, 164 shorts, and 21 VR/360 works. The lineup includes 35 World premieres (6 features, 29 shorts), 46 North American premieres (32 features, 14 shorts), and 25 US. premieres (16 features, 9 shorts). (PHEW!) 

As always, KEXP is thrilled to host the "Face the Music" series, a curated collection of films that shed "light on the lives, stories, and struggles between the notes."  One of the films in this series is the Seattle debut of Ethan Hawke’s Blaze. Hawke will be awarded the Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cinema at the Friday, June 8th event, and will be part of a post-screening Q&A.

Take a look at the list of movies in the "Face the Music" series below. See you at the movies! (NOTE: Please note that the following schedule is subject to change; check out for the latest updates.)

Being Frank: The Chris Sievey Story (United Kingdom | 2018 | 100 minutes | d: Steve Sullivan)

MONDAY, MAY 28 9:00 PM | SIFF Cinema Egyptian
THURSDAY, MAY 31 4:00 PM | SIFF Cinema Uptown
SATURDAY, JUNE 2 8:00 PM | SIFF Cinema Uptown

Underneath the delightfully daffy papier-mâché head of Frank Sidebottom, the real-life inspiration for the 2014 film Frank, you will find Chris Sievey, the inventive court jester of the Manchester music and comedy scene for over 25 years, who is finally unmasked in this singular portrait of a truly uncommon artist.

Blaze (USA | 2018 | 127 minutes | d: Ethan Hawke)

SATURDAY, JUNE 9 3:15 PM | SIFF Cinema Uptown

Ethan Hawke steps behind the camera for an unorthodox dramatization of the remarkable life of burly singer-songwriter Blaze Foley, who went from living in a treehouse in Georgia to befriending folk legend Townes Van Zandt and becoming an unsung legend of the Outlaw Country Music movement.

Highlander with Live Soundtrack by DJ NicFit (United Kingdom | 1986 | 116 minutes | d: Russell Mulcahy)

WEDNESDAY, MAY 23 6:30 PM | SIFF Cinema Egyptian

When originally released in 1986, this franchise-inspiring fantasy adventure about an immortal Scottish swordsman featured a handful of new songs from rock icons Queen. Now, Seattle's own DJ NicFit reimagines the cult classic with a decades-spanning all Queen playlist performed live on two turntables.

Industrial Accident: The Story of Wax Trax! Records (USA | 2018 | 95 minutes | d: Julia Nash)

SATURDAY, MAY 19 8:30 PM | Majestic Bay
TUESDAY, MAY 22 9:30 PM | SIFF Cinema Egyptian
WEDNESDAY, MAY 30 9:00 PM | Shoreline

Join Jim Nash and Dannie Flesher on a trip through the '80s underground as their revolutionary Chicago record store transforms into the pioneering label that launched industrial music icons Ministry, Front 242, My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult, and many more.

Looking for Oum Kulthum (Germany | 2017 | 90 minutes | d: Shirin Neshat)

SATURDAY, MAY 19 6:00 PM | Lincoln Square
SUNDAY, MAY 20 11:00 AM | AMC Pacific Place

The parallels between an Iranian filmmaker and her subject, the legendary Egyptian diva Oum Kulthum-both of whom struggle to achieve their artistic visions in male-dominated societies-are explored through a unique film-within-a-film structure by visual artist Shirin Neshat.

Making the Grade (Ireland | 2017 | 96 minutes | d: Ken Wardrop)

TUESDAY, MAY 22 6:30 PM | SIFF Cinema Uptown
SATURDAY, MAY 26 11:00 AM | SIFF Cinema Egyptian
SUNDAY, JUNE 3 1:00 PM | Kirkland Performance Center

Every year over 30,000 students prepare for rigorous and daunting piano exams in Ireland. Welcoming audiences into living rooms, music studios, and churches, this edifying documentary explores the bond between teachers and pupils as well as the intense musical dedication required to make the grade.

MATANGI / Maya / M.I.A. (Sri Lanka | 2018 | 94 minutes | d: Stephen Loveridge)

WEDNESDAY, MAY 23 6:30 PM | SIFF Cinema Uptown
THURSDAY, MAY 24 6:30 PM | Ark Lodge Cinemas

The world of musician, activist, provocateur, and Sri Lankan immigrant M.I.A. is revealed through decades of previously-unseen personal diaries which anchor a kinetic documentary that is every bit as unconventional and uncompromising as the international hip-hop star herself.

Nico (Italy | 2017 | 93 minutes | d: Susanna Nicchiarelli)

SATURDAY, MAY 26 9:00 PM | SIFF Cinema Uptown
SUNDAY, JUNE 3 8:30 PM | SIFF Cinema Egyptian

Danish actress/musician Trine Dyrholm embodies fashion icon, Warhol muse, and The Velvet Underground chanteuse Nico as she travels through Europe during the final years of her life, unleashing inventive, melancholic new music as a solo artist while also battling addiction and attempting to reconnect with her troubled son.

Rubén Blades Is Not My Name (Panama | 2018 | 85 minutes | d: Abner Benaim)

SUNDAY, MAY 27 4:00 PM | SIFF Cinema Uptown
TUESDAY, JUNE 5 9:30 PM | SIFF Cinema Egyptian

Singer-songwriter Rubén Blades, whose "thinking man's salsa" has earned him praise as the Bob Dylan of Latin America, reflects on his astonishing 50-year career as he embarks on his final tour. But this Grammy winner, actor, and Harvard educated activist is far from retiring, instead planning a new run for the office of President of Panama.

Ryuichi Sakamoto: Coda (Japan | 2017 | 100 minutes | d: Stephen Nomura Schible)

TUESDAY, MAY 29 7:00 PM | AMC Pacific Place
WEDNESDAY, MAY 30 3:45 PM | SIFF Cinema Uptown
FRIDAY, JUNE 8 12:30 PM | SIFF Cinema Uptown

After years away from the spotlight due to a battle with cancer and a focus on activism in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, prolific Oscar®-winning Japanese musician Ryuichi Sakamoto returns to the studio to create a major new opus and explore how his music has evolved over time.

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