The Hawaii International Film Festival presented by Halekulani opened on Thursday, offering over 200 movies from 43 countries in just ten days.
The festival doesn't just have something for everyone. It has lots of things for everyone, including many locally made films.
To figure out what you might like to see, you can check out the program guide available in many local stores. Or better yet, go online to the festival's web site (HIFF.ORG) where you can watch trailers for most of the 200 films on the schedule and even buy and print your tickets at home.
I can't review any of the movies, because I haven't seen them yet, but I can tell you a little about a few of the films that look promising to me. (This list barely scratches the surface of the potentially good films that will be screened.)
WHITE FROG centers on a boy with Asperger's Syndrome who is often neglected and misunderstood by his own family.
It shows on Thursday, October 18 at 9 PM in the Regal Dole Cannery Theaters.
EDEN, starring Jamie Chung, is based on a true story of a young Korean woman who was abducted and forced into prostitution by human traffickers. It screens on Friday, October 19 at 6:30 PM and on Sunday, October 21 an noon. Both screenings are at Regal Dole.
KEEP THE LIGHTS ON a love story about two gay men, will not likely show in Hawaii theaters after the festival in spite of overwhelmingly positive reviews, so I'll make a point of catching it. (Thursday, Oct. 16 at 6:30 PM at Dole.)
I AM NOT A HIPSTER is the first feature film of writer-director Destin Cretton, who grew up on Maui and won a prize for a terrific short film at Sundance a few years back. His film shows on Weds. October 17 at 2:30 at Dole.
JAKE SHIMABUKURO: LIFE ON FOUR STRINGS is a feature length documentary of the popular ukulele virtuoso. The film includes home video of Jake as a boy. It shows on Tuesday October 16 at 8 PM in the Hawaii Theater.
There are at least interesting five Hollywood films on the schedule, but they'll all be in Hawaii theaters in the next couple of months, so why not wait to see them: QUARTET, SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK, CLOUD ATLAS, THE SESSIONS, RUST & BONE.
What you can't experience anywhere else are the many free seminars and workshops on the program.