TUNKHANNOCK — “Brooklyn” tells the story of a young Irish immigrant. “Florence and the Uffizi Gallery,” brings viewers to Italy. “Lady in the Van” takes place in London. “No Place on Earth” goes back in time to Nazi Germany. “Rembrandt” is set in Amsterdam.
The Dietrich Theater’s 2016 Spring Film Festival has a rich, star-studded selection of 21 films, foreign and independent, that will take movie-goers on journeys far and wide. Matinees and evening showings are scheduled every day of the week from April 1 to 21, with tickets priced at $8.50 each.
The festival begins Friday, April 1 with the Opening Night Gala at $40 a ticket, the only time reservations are required. Featured on Gala Night are two films: “Brooklyn,” the romantic and humorous story of a young Irish immigrant, and “Lady in the Van,” the story of an unlikely friendship starring the inimitable Maggie Smith. Tickets are limited for this night, which includes hors d’oeuvres from Twigs, Epicurean Delight, Seasons, The Fireplace, and Ma Greenley’s; wine and beer provided by Nimble Hill and dessert by Epicurean Delight. Doors open at 6 p.m. Call 570-996-1500 for reservations.
This year’s festival will also feature a special movie event at 7:15 p.m. Wednesday, April 13, when Chris Nicola, cave explorer and filmmaker of “No Place on Earth” will introduce the film and conduct a question and answer session afterwards, an opportunity to hear how he discovered the cave where families hid seeking asylum in 1942 during the Holocaust.
A Post-Festival Discussion is scheduled for 1 p.m. Friday, April 22, for those who want a chance to discuss the films with others. Film buff Ronnie Harvey will lead the discussion. There is no need to register.
A new feature of this year’s Spring Film Festival is more show times on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays of festival. On those dates at the noon and 2 p.m. show times, two of the theater’s screens will be dedicated to festival films so that attendees will have twice the opportunity to see films they might not otherwise be able to.
For more information, call the Dietrich at 570-996-1500.
This year’s schedule is as follows. Films are in English unless otherwise noted.
• “45 Years”
Directed by: Andrew Haigh
Starring: Charlotte Rampling, Tom Courtenay and Geraldine James
Show times: 12 p.m. April 6, 2:30 p.m. April 10, 7:15 p.m. April 15, 2:30 p.m. April 18 and 12 p.m. April 21.
A husband and wife are about to celebrate their 45th wedding anniversary, when emotional events of the past force the couple to come to terms with their new circumstances.
Language: English, Italian and Japanese with subtitles
Directed by: Duke Johnson and Charlie Kaufman
Starring: David Thewlis, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Tom Noonan
Show times: 2:30 p.m. April 5, 9:30 p.m. April 8, 7:15 p.m. April 14, 12 p.m. April 18 and 2:30 p.m. April 21.
The story of a man struggling with his inability to connect with other people until he meets an exotic stranger.
• “The Big Short”
Directed by: Adam McKay
Starring: Christian Bale, Steve Carell and Ryan Gosling
Show times: 7:15 p.m. April 2, 2:15 p.m. April 11, 12 p.m. April 13, 2:15 p.m. April 16, 7:15 p.m. April 18, 12 p.m. April 19 and 7:30 p.m. April 21.
“The Big Short” centers on the housing and credit bubble of the last decade. Four different men in the banking and finance market learn of the impending doom of the financial market and decide to take on the big banks for their greed and lack of foresight.
Directed by: John Crowley
Starring: Saoirse Ronan, Emory Cohen and Domhnall Gleeson
Show times: Opening Night April 1, 4:30 p.m. April 3, 12 p.m. April 4, 7 p.m. April 6, 5 p.m. April 9, 2:30 p.m. April 13, 7:15 p.m. April 17 and 5 p.m. April 21.
The romantic and humorous story of a young Irish immigrant navigating her way through 1950s Brooklyn.
Directed by: Todd Haynes
Starring: Cate Blanchett, Rooney Mara, Sarah Paulson
Show times: 7:15 p.m. April 5, 12 p.m. April 9, 2:30 p.m. April 14, 12 p.m. April 18, 7:15 p.m. April 19 and 2 p.m. April 21.
A young department-store clerk in 1950s Manhattan and a beautiful older woman stuck in a marriage of convenience. A sensitive, delicate and dramatic film about two women drawn to each other in an era of intolerance.
• “The Danish Girl”
Language: English, German and French with subtitles
Directed by: Tom Hooper
Starring: Eddie Redmayne, Alicia Vikander nad Amber Heard
Show times: 9:45 p.m. April 2, 2:30 p.m. April 7, 7 p.m. April 10, 9:30 p.m. April 15, 2:30 p.m. April 19 and 12 p.m. April 20.
A love story inspired by the lives of artists Lili Elbe and Gerda Wegener. Their marriage and work evolve as they navigate Lili’s groundbreaking journey as a trans-gender pioneer.
• “Florence and the Uffizi Gallery”
Language: English and Italian with subtitles
Directed by: Luca Viotto
Starring: Marco Ciatti, Arturo Galansino, Simon Merrells
Show times: 12 p.m. April 3, 2:30 p.m. April 4 and 5 p.m. April 13.
A multi-dimensional journey through the city that was the cradle of the Italian Renaissance. Get an exclusive tour through beautiful and representative works of art of the period from Michelangelo and Brunelleschi to Leonardo and Botticelli, with a detailed look at the very treasure house containing their masterpieces.
• “Heart of a Dog”
Directed by: Laurie Anderson
Starring: Archie, Jason Berg and Heung-Heung Chin
Show times: 2:15 p.m. April 8, 12 p.m. April 11 and 9:30 p.m. April 16.
In this documentary, artist Laurie Anderson reflects on remembrances of her late beloved piano-playing and finger-painting dog Lolabelle.
• “Janis: Little Girl Blue”
Directed by: Amy Berg
Starring: Janis Joplin, Cat Power and Peter Albin
Show times: 2:30 p.m. April 5, 7:30 p.m. April 11, 12 p.m. April 12, 5 p.m. April 16 and 12 p.m. April 19.
Janis Joplin is one of the most revered and iconic rock and roll singers of all time. She thrilled millions of listeners and blazed new creative trails before her death in 1970 at age twenty-seven. “Janis: Little Girl Blue” offers an in depth examination of a complicated, driven and talented artist. Joplin’s own words tell much of the film’s story through a series of letters she wrote to her parents over the years, many of them made public here for the first time.
• “The Lady in the Van”
Directed by: Nicholas Hytner
Starring: Maggie Smith, Alex Jennings
Show times: Opening Night April 1, 2:15 p.m. April 3, 4:45 p.m. April 6, 12 p.m. and 7 p.m. April 8, 4:30 p.m. April 10, 5 p.m. April 14, 5 p.m. April 17 and 5 p.m. April 20.
The true story of the relationship between playwright/author Alan Bennett and the singular Miss Shepherd, a woman of uncertain origins who ‘temporarily’ parks her van in Bennett’s London driveway and proceeds to live there for fifteen years.
Directed by: Anton Corbijn
Starring: Robert Pattinson, Dane DeHaan, Peter Lucas
Show times: 12 p.m. April 4, 12 p.m. April 7 and 2:30 p.m. April 17.
“Life” follows a Life Magazine photographer who receives an assignment to photograph rising Hollywood star James Dean, played by Pennsylvania local Dane Dehaan. As the pair travel across the country, a friendship and mutual admiration begins to blossom between them.
• “Manet – Portraying Life”
Directed by: Phil Grabsky and Ben Harding
Starring: Tim Marlow
Show times: 12 p.m. April 5, 12 p.m. April 15 and 2:30 p.m. April 19.
This eagerly awaited exhibition at London’s Royal Academy of Arts was the first ever retrospective devoted to the portraiture of Edouard Manet. Spanning the artist’s entire career, this exhibit brought together works from across Europe, Asia and the United States. The film reveals exclusive behind-the-scenes moments of the exhibition’s preparation, which normally go unseen by the public, and interweaves a detailed, superbly-crafted biography of Manet and nineteenth century Paris.
Language: Turkish with subtitles
Directed by: Deniz Gamze Ergüven
Starring: Günes Sensoy, Doga Zeynep Doguslu, Tugba Sunguroglu
Show times: 5 p.m. April 5, 2:30 p.m. April 8, 12 p.m. April 10, 12 p.m. April 12 and 7:15 p.m. April 16.
“Mustang” follows five teenage sisters dealing with their overprotective upbringing. The family removes all “instruments of corruption,” like cell phones and computers, and essentially imprisons the girls, subjecting them to endless lessons in housework in preparation for becoming brides.
• “No Place on Earth”
Language: English, German, Yiddish with subtitles
Directed by: Janet Tobias
Starring: Chris Nicola, Fruzsina Pelikán and Saul Stermer
Show times: 12 p.m. April 8, 2:30 p.m. April 12 and 7:15 p.m. April 13.
Esther Stermer, the matriarch of a Jewish family in the Ukraine, leads her family underground to hide from the pursuing Nazis – and stays nearly a year and a half.
Directed by: Phil Grabsky
Starring: Kat Mansoor and Robert Lindsay
Show times: 2:30 p.m. April 7, 12 p.m. April 11 and 12 p.m. April 16.
Every Rembrandt exhibition is eagerly anticipated, but this major new show hosted by London’s National Gallery and Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum is an event like no other. Given exclusive, privileged access to both galleries, the film documents this landmark exhibition while interweaving Rembrandt’s life story with the behind-the-scenes preparations at these world famous institutions.
• “Son of Saul”
Language: German, French and Russian with subtitles
Directed by: László Nemes
Starring: Géza Röhrig, Levente Molnár, Urs Rechn
Show times: 12 p.m. April 2, 4 p.m. April 8, 2:30 p.m. April 11 and 2:30 p.m. April 15.
A drama about a concentration camp inmate who discovers the body of his young son, and must choose between participating in the clandestine uprising being planned among the prisoners or securing a proper Jewish burial for his child.
Directed by: Tom McCarthy
Starring: Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton and Rachel McAdams
Show times: 7 p.m. April 3, 2 p.m. April 6, 9:45 p.m. April 9, 4:30 p.m. April 12, 12 p.m. April 14 and 4:30 p.m. April 19.
The true story of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Boston Globe investigation that would rock the city and cause a crisis in one of the world’s oldest and most trusted institutions. When the newspaper’s tenacious “Spotlight” team of reporters delves into allegations of abuse in the Catholic Church, their lengthy investigation uncovers a decades-long cover-up at the highest levels of Boston’s religious, legal, and government establishments, touching off a wave of revelations around the world.
Language: Arabic and English with subtitles
Directed by: Naji Abu Nowar
Starring: Jacir Eid Al-Hwietat and Hussein Salameh Al-Sweilhiyeen
Show times: 5 p.m. April 2, 12 p.m. April 5, 5 p.m. April 7, 2:15 p.m. April 12 and 5 p.m. April 15.
A young Bedouin boy experiences a greatly hastened coming of age as he embarks on a perilous desert journey to guide a British officer to his secret destination.
Directed by: Jay Roach
Starring: Bryan Cranston, Diane Lane, Helen Mirren
Show times: 2:15 p.m. April 2, 5 p.m. April 4, 12 p.m. April 7, 7:15 p.m. April 12, 2:30 p.m. April 15, 2:30 p.m. April 18 and 2:30 p.m. April 20.
Dalton Trumbo was Hollywood’s top screenwriter until he and other artists were jailed and blacklisted for their political beliefs. This film recounts how he used words and wit to expose the absurdity and injustice of the blacklist.
• “Where to Invade Next”
Directed by: Michael Moore
Starring: Michael Moore, Krista Kiuru and Tim Walker
Show times: 7:30 p.m. April 4, 2:30p.m. April 9, 12 p.m. April 14, 4:30 p.m. April 18 and 12 p.m. April 21.
A comedy in which “iinvader” visits a host of nations to learn how the U.S. could improve its own prospects. Turns out the solutions to America’s most entrenched problems already existed in the world – they’re just waiting to be brought back home.
Language: English, Spanish and Swiss German with subtitles
Directed by: Paolo Sorrentino
Starring: Michael Caine, Harvey Keitel, Rachel Weisz
Show times: 2:30 p.m. April 4, 7:15 p.m. April 7, 7:15 p.m. April 9, 5 p.m. April 11, 2:30 p.m. April 14, 12 p.m. April 15, 12 p.m. April 17 and 7:15 p.m. April 20.
The story of an acclaimed composer who brings along his best friend, a renowned filmmaker, on a trip to a magnificent spa in the Swiss Alps. While his friend scrambles to finish the screenplay for what he imagines will be his last important film, Caine has no intention of resuming his musical career. The two men reflect on their past, each finding that some of the most important experiences can come later in life.
Information provided by the Dietrich Theater.