The third annual Lakewood Asian Film Fest returns Sept. 5-7 at the Lakewood Elks with another great lineup of five emotional, thought-provoking films during the Labor Day weekend.
The film fest – sponsored by the Lakewood Arts Commission – is free to the public.
The acclaimed and emotionally charged Indian film, “Water,” is the opening selection and will show at 2 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 5. The film highlights the plight of Chuyia an 8-year-old Hindu girl who has been married and suddenly widowed. Custom demands she be sent away to a home where Hindu widows must live in penitence. Chuyia’s feisty nature soon affects the other widows and causes them to question their faith and social status.
The film’s director, Deepa Mehta, received death threats and arson attacks in an attempt to halt production of this controversial film. Ebert and Roeper gave the film “Two Thumbs Up.” Time called the film “A Triumph.” The film is two hours long, subtitled and rated PG-13. Additionally, Lakewood Arts Commissionmember Phil Raschke says a short discussion session will be held following the showing of the film.
The stunning film “The Painted Veil” is the film fest’s second Saturday showing and set for 7 p.m. This film is rated PG-13 and stars Edward Norton and Naomi Watts. The film is based on Somerset Maugham’s classic novel of the same name. The story is about an English doctor who takes his beautiful, but faithless wife to a cholera ravaged village deep in China. Rolling Stone called it “Magnificent.” Diana Rigg, of Ms. Emma Peel fame in the Avenger TV series, is also in the film. “The Painted Veil” is a powerful, terrifically acted, beautifully photographed film.
The Asian Film Fest continues on Sunday, Sep 6 at 2:00 p.m. with “The Sapphires” which is rated PG-13. This Australian film features four Aboriginal girls from the outback who set out to win a singing contest, feel the sting of prejudice and rejection then work for an opportunity to perform for American troops in Vietnam. A “blast of joy,” according to Rolling Stone.
The Sunday evening film at 7:00 p.m. is the acclaimed Golden Globe nominated Chinese film “The Flowers of War”. This film is rated R. Christian Bale poses as a priest to try and save young school girls and Chinese courtesans from invading Japanese troops during 1937 Rape of Nanking. Directed by the legendary Zhang Yimou.
The Asian Film Fest final film will be on Monday (Labor Day), 2 p.m., Sept. 7. This stunning, highly emotional film is called “Departures,” and is rated PG-13. A young husband loses his job in an orchestra and returns back to his small hometown, where he accepts a socially degrading job preparing the deceased for the journey to the afterlife. This film is the winner of the American Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Roger Ebert gave it Four Stars! You definitely don’t want to miss this emotional, multilayered story of family relationships, friendship and the departure of those we love.
The Lakewood Elks, is located at 6313 75th Street West (off Bridgeport). The Elks is air-conditioned and has free parking. Raschke noted a concession stand will be available, plus there will be prize giveaways before each film. Seating is on a first-come basis, and there will be a special lobby exhibit by the famous Philippine Scouts Historical Society
For more details call 253-983-7835 or 253-861-1366.
The Third Annual Lakewood Asian Film Fest is proudly sponsored by Casa Mia Restaurant, Historical Phil, Korean Women’s Association, Lakewood Arts Commission, Lakewood History Museum, Lakewood Playhouse, Lakewood Sister Cities, Pierce County Library, RAM Restaurant, Clover Park Rotary, Tacoma-Pierce County Crime Stoppers.