Common Ground Middletown International Film Festival

Russell Library has partnered with Middlesex Community College and Wesleyan University to select and screen acclaimed international films.  The festival provides an opportunity to learn more about our local community’s diverse cultures and to gather together on ‘common ground’ to celebrate the global human spirit.  Each screening begins is followed by a scholarly discussion of the film’s cultural and societal themes. The venues are handicapped accessible.  All events are free and refreshments will be served.

Common Ground 2013: The Fifth Middletown International Film Festival

Tuesday, October 1, 7 PM, Russell LibraryMore than Frybread poster

  • More Than Frybread –
    directed by Travis Holt Hamilton,
    USA, 2011, 93 min. 

A fun “mockumentary”, a fictitious frybread competition in Flagstaff, Arizona.  The story follows 5 of the 22 entrants whom we get to know and to cheer on.  It is a slapstick comedy romp with well acted character studies. 

Theodore Van Alst, Yale University, will speak.

Mout to Mouth
Tuesday, October 8, 7 PM, Russell Library

  • Mouth to Mouth –
    directed by Manuel Gomez Pereira,
    Spain, 1995, 106 min.

A funny romantic comedy about an unemployed aspiring actor who works for a phone-sex enterprise.  One day he receives a call from the mysterious wife of one of this best clients and the crazy hijinx begin. 

Bernardo Gonzalez, Wesleyan University, will speak.

Saving Grace poster
Tuesday, October 15, 7 PM,
Center for Film Studies, Wesleyan University

  • Saving Grace –
    directed by Nigel Cole,
    England, 2000, 93 min.

At its heart, it is still a marijuana comedy but with well developed characters, intelligent dialogue, a charming and capable cast, and clean, clear direction, it is sweet, silly and sincere. 

Katja Straub, Wesleyan University, will speak.


IntouchablesTuesday, October 22, 7 PM,
Center for Film Studies, Wesleyan University

  • Intouchables –
    directed by Olivier Noakache, Eric Toledano,
    France, 2011, 112 min.

After he becomes a quadriplegic from a paragliding accident, an aristocrat hires a young man from the projects to be his caretaker and that is when the comedic fun begins.

Typhanie Leservot, Wesleyan University will speak.


Tuesday, October 29, 7 PM, Russell LibraryWorking Class

  • Working Class –
    directed by Tsui Hark,
    Hong Kong, 1985, 98 min.

All in all, Working Class, is a fun little attempt at commenting on working class people in a playful manner.  Tsui Hark, Sam Hui and Joey Wong are all great at comedy and it is a funny little fairy tale to watch. 

Hing Wu, Southern Connecticut State University, will speak.

In July Tuesday, November 5, 7 PM,
Center for Film Studies, Wesleyan University

  • In July –
    directed by Fatih Akin,
    Germany, 2000, 99 min. 

A charming comedy focusing on a geeky teacher as he embarks on a wondrous road trip in search of his dream girl.  After picking up a lovely street vendor, Juli, the man and his would be love begin falling for each other while travelling from Hamburg to Istanbul.

Iris Bork-Goldfield, Wesleyan University, will speak.

2012 MIFF IV

My Voice (2002) Portuguese, directed by Flora Gomes
Seraphine (2008) French, directed by Martin Provost
The Concert (2009)Russian, directed by Radu Mihaileanu
Poetry (2010) Korean, directed by Chang-dong Lee
Dancing Dreams (2010) German, directed by Rainer Hoffmann and Anne Linsel
As It Is in Heaven (2004) Swedish, directed by Kay Pollak

2011 MIFF III

BOY - Taika Waititi, Director, New Zealand, 2010, 87 min.
Cherry Blossoms - Doris Dorrie, Director, Germany, 2008, 127 min.
Departures - Yojiro Takita, Director, Japan, 2008, 130 min.
Undertow - Javier Fuentes-Leon, Director, Peru, 2009, 100 min.
We Still Live Here - Anne Makepeace, Director, Native American, 2010, 82 min.
The Italian - Andrey Kravchuk, Director, Russia, 2005, 90 min.

2010 MIFF II

Sin Nombre - Honduran/Mexican
Kaadhal - South Indian/Tamil
Yesterday - South African
My Best Friend - French
The Cave of the Yellow Dog - Mongolian
Reel Injun - Native American

2009 MIFF I

Under the Same Moon - Latino
Offside - Iranian
Chungking Express - East Asian
Dance Me Outside and 4 shorts by local directors - First Nations/Native American
Golden Door - Italian
Everything is Illuminated - Ukranianian

Film Lists from The Middletown International Film Festivals

Common Ground International Film Festival is made possible through a grant from the Middlesex County Community Foundation.

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