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Arts Watch: L.E.S. Film Festival Opens Thursday

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Replace Clothes with Paint
Still from Michael Fecquiere’s documentary, “Replace Clothes with Paint,” screening on June 19th as part of The L.E.S. Film Festival.

 The 3rd Annual Lower East Side Film Festival, which kicks off Thursday at Sunshine Cinema, just gets bigger and better. With eighteen screenings over eleven days at five venues around the LES, including specially themed presentations: Doc Night; Gay Night; Made in NY Night; and a Mind F*ck Night of shorts intended to blow your mind, plus opening and closing nights parties where you can mix with the filmmakers, this year’s festival promises to be fun, engaging, and full of energy.  As of this writing, Thursday’s opening night showing of Chioke Nassor’s How To Follow Strangers is sold out, but there is plenty more to see throughout the festival.

A few highlights include the New York Premiere of David Felix Sutcliffe’s Adama, a touching story about a 16 year old Muslim girl from Harlem who became the youngest person swept up by FBI terrorism investigations, and a “Sneak Peek” of i hate myself, director Joanna Arnow’s intimate self-portrait of her relationship with racially charged poet-provocateur James Kepple.  The auteur will be present after the screening for what promises to be an interesting Q&A session.

The Lo-Down has even gotten into the act.  We are presenting a special Shorts Showcase on Tuesday, June 18 at Casa Mezcal’s Obra Negra on Orchard Street.  The evening’s lineup will include: Move Mountain, Bad Motherfucker, Kill The Calories, Dosa Hunt (starring Neon Indian, Rostam Batmanglij of Vampire Weekend, and others!). The showcase will follow a free panel on digital distribution presented by IFC as part of the festival’s LES Chats series.

In keeping with the inclusive nature of the festival, festival-goers get to vote for their favorite feature film and shorts—the winners which will be shown during the Best Of L.E.S* Festival closing night at Sunshine Cinema.

Lower East Side Film Festival // June 13 – 23 // Tickets are $12 online and $15 at the door // lesfilmfestival.com

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