The 43rd San Francisco International Film Festival is, as we noted in last week's coverage, a very mixed bag -- and that's a good thing. The impressive range of nationalities represented by the festival's films continues this week with such gems as the Italian But Forever in My Mind, the Swedish Missing Boy, and the French Beau Travail. Some call Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami great -- he's the recipient of this year's Akira Kurosawa Award for lifetime achievement in filmmaking, and you'll find Frako Loden's assessment of his work in this issue.
From April 20 to May 4. Screenings take place at the AMC Kabuki 8 Theaters (1881 Post at Fillmore); the Castro Theater (429 Castro near Market); the Pacific Film Archive (2575 Bancroft at Bowditch, UC Berkeley campus); the Rafael Film Center (1118 Fourth St. at A, San Rafael); and Landmark's Park Theater (1275 El Camino Real near Valparaiso, Menlo Park). For festival information call 931-FILM or visit www.sfiff.org on the Web. For tickets, call (510) 601-8932.
Much closer to home, the winner of the Golden Spire Award for best Bay Area documentary is Live Nude Girls, UNITE!; Sura Wood interviews co-director and Lusty Lady dancer Julia Query to get the story behind the story of the North Beach strip club's performers' fight to unionize. And finally, was Winona Ryder a good choice for this year's Peter J. Owens Award? Michael Fox thinks not -- and explains why.
Enjoy our second week of critical coverage of the festival -- and we'll see you down at the AMC Kabuki, the Castro, the PFA, and the Rafael.