Films Synposes & Trailers

3 Days

3 Days

2018 Julie Sharbutt 11 minutes US Short Drama

When three women friends sense danger on a camping trip, they keep each other laughing until a horrible twist makes them feel more alone than ever.

7 Planets

7 Planets

2018 Milda Baginskaite 6 minutes Short

A tale of one girl’s dream to escape Planet Earth.

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A Great Ride

A Great Ride

2018 Deborah Craig & Veronica Deliz 23 minutes US Short Doc

A look at older lesbians who live in an LGBTQ-friendly retirement community in Santa Rosa—aging with dynamism and zest for life, determination, and humor.

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Ask for Jane

Ask for Jane

2018 Rachel Carey 108 minutes US Feature

BASED ON A TRUE STORY –  Chicago, 1969 – A world where abortion is punishable by prison, and getting birth control is nearly impossible. When a pregnant student at the University of Chicago attempts to take her own life, Rose and Janice find a doctor willing to perform the procedure in secret to save the woman’s life. Sparked by this experience, Rose and Janice form the Jane Collective: a secret organization to help other women obtain safe and illegal abortions. Operating like a spy network, complete with blindfolds and code names, the Janes help thousands of women – but they can’t hide from the police forever.

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Birdie

Birdie

2018 Shelly Lauman 8 minutes US Short Doc

A woman walks alone to the train station. As she descends the stairs to the underground platform she smiles at a young man, he smiles back. With the smallest of gestures, the woman becomes caught in a subtle and sinister game.

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Cafe Abundance

Cafe Abundance

2018 Emily McGregor 9 minutes US Short Comedy

When Ashley realizes society has been selling her nothing but bullshit her entire life, she completely loses it in the middle of an artisanal restaurant. This story begs the question: does kale quinoa make you feel empowered? NO. OF COURSE, IT DOESN’T.

Counterfeit Kunkoo

Counterfeit Kunkoo

2017 Reema Sengupta 15 minutes India Short Drama Subtitled

In a city overflowing with buildings, Smita must find herself a house to rent. She is hard-working, honest and respectful – the ideal tenant – except for one glaring flaw. She is a middle-class Indian woman without a husband. An intimate perspective on the identity of the ‘Ideal Indian Female’ in urban India of today.

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Dykes, Camera, Action

Dykes, Camera, Action

2018 Caroline Berler 58 minutes US

Lesbians didn’t always get to see themselves on screen. But between Stonewall, the feminist movement, and the experimental cinema of the 1970s, they built visibility, and transformed the social imagination about queerness. Filmmakers Barbara Hammer, Su Friedrich, Rose Troche, Cheryl Dunye, Yoruba Richen, Desiree Akhavan, Vicky Du, film critic B. Ruby Rich, Jenni Olson, and others share moving and often hilarious stories from their lives and discuss how they’ve expressed queer identity through film.

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Freaks of Nurture

Freaks of Nurture

2018 Alexandra Lemay 6 minutes Canada Short Animated

A stop-motion film about a mother-daughter relationship bursting at the seams with babies, poodles and flying spaghetti.

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Girl-Hearted

Girl-Hearted

2017 Anne Scheschonk 37 minutes Germany Short Doc Subtitled

Nori, a 7-year-old child who was assigned a male gender at birth but defines herself as female, and her mother, Josephin reflect on their experiences together and on the ways they’ve traversed society’s expectations of them—and, perhaps more importantly, their own expectations of one another. A film about being a girl.

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Girls Section

Girls Section

2018 Kathryn Everett 12 minutes Pakistan Short Doc Subtitled

Life is hard in remote northern Pakistan – especially for women, who face significant cultural, economic, and geographic barriers to opportunity and education. Despite their difficulties, a quiet revolution is growing. For the first time, girls in the region are challenging tradition for their right to go to school.

In Reality

In Reality

2018 Ann Lupo 89 minutes US Feature

Enter the fantastical mind of a young woman in love – Ann is consumed by the fantasy of finding true love. Just when she thinks she’s found it, she is friend-zoned. The disappointment of rejection sends her into an obsessive downward spiral that tests the limits of her sanity and the strength of her closest friendship. In order to reclaim her bearings on reality, she confronts her overgrown fantasies by making a film about the experience. The result is a vulnerable, hilarious, and vibrantly stylized investigation of love.

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In the Name of Your Daughter

In the Name of Your Daughter

2018 Giselle Portenier 84 minutes UK/Tanzania Documentary

Heartbreaking and heartwarming, the award-winning In The Name Of Your Daughter tells the story of Tanzanian girls as young as eight who have to make the most difficult choice of their young lives: whether to submit to female genital mutilation (FGM) and child marriage or risk their lives and run away from home, not knowing if they’ll ever see their families again.

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Instructions on Parting

Instructions on Parting

2018 Amy Jenkins 95 minutes US

Visual artist Amy Jenkins presents a portrait of the cyclical nature of life and death. As she navigates the emotional transition into motherhood, she must also make sense of the untimely passing of several members from her immediate family.

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Itsy

Itsy

2018 Premila Puri 12 minutes UK Short

ITSY is a film about kindness – a narration of two neighbors and an unsuspecting friend who forges their unique bond.

Lovesick

Lovesick

2018 Ann S. Kim & Priya Giri Desai 74 minutes India

In India, where marriage is a must but AIDS carries a stigma, what are HIV-positive people to do? 72-year-old Dr. Suniti Solomon, who discovered India’s first case of HIV 25 years ago, has found a way to help HIV positive patients find partners and meet societal expectations by taking on a new role: marriage matchmaker. Like other Indian matchmakers, Dr. Solomon matches by religion, education, and income; but she also matches by white blood cell counts and viral loads. For her, this isn’t just about romance – it’s a way to stem the spread of HIV and fight stigma.

This film was made possible in part by support from AIDS Project of Southern Vermont.

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My Big White Thighs & Me

My Big White Thighs & Me

2017 Hannah Maia 25 minutes UK Short Doc

My Big White Thighs encourages us all to turn down the volume on the demands of the world and to celebrate the quiet heroism of a female life and it’s body.   A story about womanhood, miscarriage, healing, loving your own skin & freezing your bum off in cold water.

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Netizens

Netizens

2018 Cynthia Lowen 96 minutes US

NETIZENS exposes the proliferation of cyber harassment faced by women, spreading from the web to the most intimate corners of their lives. As the internet becomes the next frontier of civil rights, this feature documentary follows three women who are targets of harassment, along with advocates, legal experts and others, as they confront digital abuse and strive for equality and justice online.

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On Her Shoulders

On Her Shoulders

2018 Alexandria Bombach 94 minutes Italy

Twenty-three-year-old Nadia Murad’s life is a dizzying array of exhausting undertakings—from giving testimony before the U.N. to visiting refugee camps to soul-bearing media interviews and one-on-one meetings with top government officials. With deep compassion and a formal precision and elegance that matches Nadia’s calm and steely demeanor, filmmaker Alexandria Bombach follows this strong-willed young woman, who survived the 2014 genocide of the Yazidis in Northern Iraq and escaped the hands of ISIS to become a relentless beacon of hope for her people, even when at times she longs to lay aside this monumental burden and simply have an ordinary life.

This film was made possible by support from SIT: Study Abroad.

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Over the Limit

Over the Limit

2017 Marta Prus 74 minutes Poland/Germany

Over the Limit shows how the successful Russian system for training athletes transgresses boundaries. Elite rhythmic gymnast Rita Mamun has reached a crucial moment in her career. She’s soon to retire, but has one final goal set out for her: winning Olympic gold. A nail-biting behind-the-scenes drama about the intense physical and mental labor put into a sport that thrives on its beautiful aesthetics.What does it mean to live constantly under the pressure of expectations?

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Pumpkin Movie

Pumpkin Movie

2017 Sophy Romvari 10 minutes US Short Drama

When two long-time friends call each other over Skype to continue their annual Halloween tradition of carving pumpkins together, they swap stories of negative encounters with men, both first- and secondhand, in this frank window into the pervasive nature of gender inequality.

Queen of Hearts

Queen of Hearts

2018 Malene Flindt Pedersen 84 minutes Denmark Subtitled

“Queen of Hearts” revolves around one of the most powerful women in Denmark – Lizette Risgaard – the President of The Danish Confederation of Trade Unions, the first woman in charge of the Danish labor movement. Over the last years the Confederation has lost 500.000 members. But with her belief in community, solidarity and her atypical leadership style, Lizette jumps into the fight for decency and justice. In this film we’re at the center of political power and decision making, where every member makes up the community and every vote can tip the scale for – or against – solidarity.

Radium Girls

Radium Girls

2018 Lydia Dean Pilcher, Ginny Mohler US Drama

Set in an era when radium was sold as a cure-all miracle potion, a group of factory workers advocate for safer work conditions after some of their colleagues become ill from radium exposure.

Rafiki

Rafiki

2018 Wanuri Kahiu 83 minutes Kenya/US Feature - Drama

“Good Kenyan girls become good Kenyan wives,” but Kena and Ziki long for something more. When love blossoms between them, the two girls will be forced to choose between happiness and safety.

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Salam

Salam

2018 Claire Fowler 14 minutes UK/US Short Drama

A female Lyft driver has to navigate the night shift in NYC while waiting to hear life or death news from Syria.

Sookee – Of Seahorses and Closets

Sookee – Of Seahorses and Closets

2018 Kerstin Polte 34 minutes Germany Documentary Subtitled

An intimate portrait of Sookee, a queer-feminist Hip Hop Artist and left-wing activist in Germany, who has been fighting against sexism, homophobia and racism especially in German hip-hop.
Her life and thoughts revolve always around her message: Tolerance and love instead of discrimination and stereotyping. Honesty instead of arrogance. Diversity instead of binary thinking.

Film made possible by Windham Movement Apparel and SoBo Studio dance center.

The Cleaner

The Cleaner

2018 Demitra Papadinis 3 minutes US Short Comedy

A woman must face all the challenges and terrors caused by an imminent visit from her mother.

The Feeling of Being Watched

The Feeling of Being Watched

2018 Assia Boundaoui 84 minutes US Documentary

When journalist Assia Boundaoui investigates rumors of surveillance in her Arab-American neighborhood in Chicago, she uncovers one of the largest FBI terrorism probes conducted before 9/11 and reveals its enduring impact on the community.

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The Great Unknown

The Great Unknown

2018 Desiree Matthews 15 minutes US Short Drama

When a woman (Desirée Matthews) experiences a miscarriage, she arrives at her grandmother’s (Academy Award winner Olympia Dukakis) door seeking a witness to her profound grief. As the two women struggle to find their way through this devastating loss, the ancient power of sisterhood is revealed in the sacred bond they share. Inspired by untold stories often endured alone in silence, ‘The Great Unknown’ offers a deep questioning of, and eventual surrender to, the vast mysteries of life.

This film was made possible with support from Brattleboro Area Hospice, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2019.

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The Heat: A Kitchen (R)evolution

The Heat: A Kitchen (R)evolution

2018 Maya Gallus 75 minutes Canada

It takes a brazen personality to excel in the competitive sport of professional cooking. A woman can only ascend the ranks if she can take the heat. Meet seven women chefs at the forefront of a “revolution.”

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The Minervator

The Minervator

2017 Sarah Menzies 11 minutes US Short Doc

Teacher, blogger and mom Mirna Valerio is an endurance runner whose weekends are packed with marathons, 50Ks and other races. But she doesn’t fit into the typical mold of ultra-runner; Mirna is black, and she’s not stick thin. Which means that along with being a runner, she is a great stereotype exploder. It can be a harsh world of cruel internet trolls and insensitive competitors, but where others might relent, Mirna keeps her head up. She chooses to focus instead on the freedom, joy and feeling of accomplishment. As she puts it, “my body got this.”

The Rest I Make Up

The Rest I Make Up

2018 Michelle Memran 79 minutes US Documentary

Maria Irene Fornes is one of America’s greatest playwrights and most influential teachers, but many know her only as the ex-lover of writer and social critic Susan Sontag. The visionary Cuban-American dramatist constructed astonishing worlds onstage, writing over 40 plays and winning nine Obie Awards. When she gradually stops writing due to dementia, an unexpected friendship with filmmaker Michelle Memran reignites her spontaneous creative spirit and triggers a decade-long collaboration that picks up where the pen left off.

This film was made possible with support from The Thompson House.

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Threads

Threads

2017 Torill Kove 8 minutes Canada Short Animated

In her latest animated short, Academy Award®-winning director Torill Kove explores the beauty and complexity of parental love, the bonds that we form over time, and the ways in which they stretch and shape us.

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What Happened to Evie

What Happened to Evie

2018 Kate Cheeseman 11 minutes Ireland Short Drama

A schoolgirl’s splintered memories of a sexual assault reveal a reality that when revisited from an alternative perspective uncovers a very different truth.

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Wild Woman

Wild Woman

2018 Vanessa Sweet 4 minutes US Short Animated

Wild Woman is an animated poem to mankind which invokes current world issues such as drone-strikes and religious persecution in a plea for empathy. Scenes transform and melt as the animator also explores her personal struggle of becoming a mother and identifying as such in our current social and political climate.

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Yellow is Forbidden

Yellow is Forbidden

2018 Pietra Brettkelly 97 minutes New Zealand/China Biography/Documentary

A modern day Cinderella story where the brave, diminutive and daring heroine’s dream doesn’t end at the ball – China’s Guo Pei is chasing every designer’s fantasy – to become part of the exclusive yet savage world of Haute Couture. Set within the new China, YELLOW IS FORBIDDEN is a feature documentary encompassing contemporary global power dynamics and the opposition between art and commerce, looking back at the history of couture all wrapped around the beauty of fashion.

 

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WARNING: The films in the Women's Film Festival should generally be considered "for mature audiences only" and are not meant for young children. Please use your own judgment, but we suggest assuming all of the films are at least PG-13+.