2013-2014 Season

Not just a movie, it's an educational experience.
BIG ARTS is a paradise for film lovers!

Viewers will enjoy the quality of surround-sound, a Blu-ray Disc player, a large screen, and high-definition projection equipment.

Assistive listening devices are available.

Series Sponsors: Bank of the Islands
Stan & Visnja Gembicki
Series Supporters: Sanibel Taxi
Jerry's Foods of Sanibel
John R. Wood Real Estate Inc.

BIG ARTS Film Society Presents:

Monday Night Film Series
October 28 – April 28, 2014: The ever-popular Monday night film series presents critically-acclaimed independent and foreign films and documentaries. More than just a movie, each film screening will be followed by a complimentary reception and a discussion lead by knowledgable film aficionados in Phillips Gallery.
7 pm
Admission: $8

Documentary Series
April 2, April 9, April 16 and April 23: The critically acclaimed documentary series offers thought provoking, eye-opening and entertaining films. An audience discussion will follow each film.
Wednesdays, 1:30 pm
Admission: $5

BIG ARTS Film Series

Previous Films this Season

BIG ARTS Augustine film

Augustine (France)

7 pm, Monday April 28, 2014

Augustine is an examination of the real case story and unusual relationship between Dr. Jean-Martin Charcot, the pioneering 19th century French neurologist – whom Sigmund Freud studied under - and Augustine, his star teenage patient. In Belle Epoque Paris, 19-year-old kitchen maid Augustine suffers an inexplicable seizure that leaves her partially paralyzed and is shipped off to an all-female psychiatric hospital specializing in the then-fashionable ailment of 'hysteria'. Augustine captures the attention of renowned neurologist Dr. Charcot (Vincent Lindon) after she has another attack that appears to give her intense physical pleasure. Intrigued, he begins using her as his principal subject, hypnotizing her in front of his fellow doctors. As Augustine displays her spectacular fits in lecture halls, the lines between doctor and patient become blurred, radically impacting the course of both of their lives. Based on a true story, this darkly sensual romantic drama chronicles one woman’s sexual awakening against the backdrop of neo-Victorian psychology and social repression.

2012, 102 min, NR
In French with English subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Blackfish film

Blackfish (US)

1:30 pm, Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Dawn Brancheau, a veteran trainer at the well-known Orlando, Florida water park Sea World, lost her life when she was attacked by Tilikum, a bull orca (or "killer whale") weighing ten thousand pounds who was a regular attraction at the park. What made the incident all the more disturbing was this was not the first time Tilikum had turned on one of his trainers, and that the orca had caused the death of a trainer in 1991 before he was purchased by Sea World. While orcas will sometimes attack humans in captivity, such incidents are extremely rare in the wild, leading some scientists to question the wisdom of keeping large, intelligent, and sometimes territorial creatures in captivity and expecting them to perform on a regular basis. Filmmaker Gabriela Cowperthwaite began researching the lives of orcas in captivity after the death of Dawn Brancheau, and in the documentary Blackfish, she offers a powerful and provocative look at a remarkable breed of animals humans still don't fully understand, and how the financial interests of water parks and resorts may run counter to the best interests of the animals they put on display. Taking its title from a Native American name for orcas, Blackfish received its world premiere at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.

2013, 80 min, Rated PG 13
In English
Admission: $5


BIG ARTS In the House film

In the House (France)

7 pm, Monday April 21, 2014

A boy of 16 wants to get in the house of one of his classmates to glean inspiration for his writing assignments. Impressed with this unusual and gifted student, his teacher rediscovers a taste for teaching, but the intrusion sparks a series of uncontrollable events.

2011, 105 min, NR
In French with English subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Salinger film

Salinger (US)

1:30 pm, Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Salinger features interviews with 150 subjects including Salinger's friends and colleagues who have never spoken on the record before as well as film footage, photographs and other material that has never been seen. Additionally, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Edward Norton, John Cusack, Danny DeVito, Martin Sheen, Tom Wolfe, Gore Vidal and Pulitzer Prize winners A. Scott Berg and Elizabeth Frank talk about Salinger's influence on their lives, their work and the broader culture. The film is the first work to get beyond the Catcher in the Rye author’s meticulously built up wall: his childhood, painstaking work methods, marriages, private world and the secrets he left behind after his death in 2010.

2013, 120 min, Rated PG 13
In English
Admission: $5


BIG ARTS Sister film

Sister (Switzerland)

7 pm, Monday April 14, 2014

Simon (Kacey Mottet Klein) lives with his older sister (Léa Seydoux) in a housing complex below a luxury Swiss ski resort. With his sister drifting in and out of jobs and relationships, twelve-year-old Simon takes on the responsibility of providing for the two of them. Every day, he takes the lift up to the opulent ski world above, stealing equipment from rich tourists to resell to the local kids down in the valley. He is able to keep their little family afloat with his small-time hustles and his sister is thankful for the money he brings in. But, when Simon partners with a crooked British seasonal worker, he begins to lose his boundaries, affecting his relationship with his sister and plummeting him into dangerous territory.

2012, 97 min, NR
In French with English subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Carol Channing film

Carol Channing - Larger Than Life (US)

1:30 pm, Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Born in Seattle, WA, in late 1921, Carol Channing made her Broadway debut in 1941 in the show Let's Face It, and she's been on the stage ever since, landing the star-making role of Lorelei Lee in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes in 1949 and originating the role of Dolly Levi in Hello, Dolly! in 1964. Since then, the actress with the big eyes, red lips, blonde mane and bubbly personality has been a one-of-a-kind presence on stage, in movies and on television, still maintaining a busy schedule at the age of 90. Filmmaker Dori Berinstein offers a fascinating profile of this singular talent in the documentary Carol Channing: Larger Than Life, which chronicles her life on and off the stage as she rehearses a new show while discussing her life in the theater, her four marriages (including a late-in-life reunion with her high-school sweetheart, who she wed in 2006), her political causes, her status as a gay icon and the persona she's created for herself. Carol Channing: Larger Than Life was an official selection at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival. Author: Mark Deming

2011, 83 min, Rated PG
In English
Admission: $5


BIG ARTS The Patience Stone film

The Patience Stone (Afghanistan)

7 pm, Monday April 7, 2014

In a country torn apart by war, Afghanistan or elsewhere... A young woman in her thirties watches over her older husband in a decrepit room. A bullet in the neck has reduced him to a comatose state. He has been abandoned by his fellow combatants and even by his own brothers. One day, the woman’s vigil changes. She begins to speak truth to her silent husband, telling him about her childhood, her suffering, her frustrations, her loneliness, her dreams, desires, and secrets. After years of living under his control, with no voice of her own, she says things she could never have spoken before, even though they have been married for ten years. Her husband has unconsciously become syngué sabour (the patience stone) – a magical black stone that, according to Persian mythology, absorbs the plight of those who confide in it. The woman’s confessions are extraordinary and without restraint: about sex and love, her anger against a man who never understood her, who mistreated her, who never showed her any respect or kindness. Through the words she delivers so audaciously to her husband, the woman seeks to free herself from suffering. But after weeks of looking after him, she begins to act, discovering herself in the relationship she starts with a young soldier. The legend of the patience stone also says that when it has absorbed all that it can handle, it explodes, causing the world to end. But, for one brave Afghan woman, it is a risk she’s willing to take to unburden herself and be free.

2012, 102 min, R
In Persian with English Subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS twenty feet from stardom film

Twenty Feet from Stardom (US)

1:30 pm, Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Filmmaker Morgan Neville pays homage to some of the greatest vocalists you've never heard of in this documentary. While the lead singers in rock, pop, and R&B are the ones who get the glory, knowledgeable music fans will tell you the backing vocalists often add the touches that make a performance truly memorable, and though many backup singers have the respect of their peers in the music business, they're all but unknown to the average listener. Twenty Feet From Stardom pays homage to some of these unsung heroes, including Darlene Love (the uncredited lead voice on some of Phil Spector's most memorable productions of the 1960s), Merry Clayton (who contributed a striking vocal cameo on the Rolling Stones "Gimme Shelter", Lisa Fischer (who has appeared on albums by Sting, Tina Turner, and Aretha Franklin, as well as touring with the Rolling Stones, and the Waters Family (they sang with Michael Jackson on the album Thriller and lent their voices to the films The Lion King and Avatar). The film also includes interviews with such superstars as Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, and Mick Jagger on the role backing vocalists play in music and the music business, while a number of veteran singers share their stories of the ups and downs of their careers. Twenty Feet From Stardom received its world premiere at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.

2013, 89 min, Rated PG 13
In English
Admission: $5


BIG ARTS Stories Before Midnight film

Before Midnight

7 pm, Monday March 24, 2014

Before Midnight is the third installment in this romantic series beginning with Before Sunrise. Jesse (Ethan Hawke) parts ways with his son Hank (Seamus Davey-Fitzpatrick) whom just spent a wonderful summer with Jesse and his family, to go back to his life with his mother in the states. Jesse reconvenes with his family, Celine (Julie Delpy) and his two daughters Ella and Nina (Jennifer and Charlotte Prior). After being invited to a writer’s retreat for Jesse’s work, we find our two lovers in their early forties spending their evening in Greece for a night of contention, aspirations, and love.

2013, 108 min, Rated R
In English
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Stories Hannah Arendt film

Hannah Arendt (German)

7 pm, Monday March 17, 2014

The sublime Barbara Sukowa reteams with director Margarethe von Trotta (Vision, Rosa Luxemburg) for her brilliant new biopic of influential German-Jewish philosopher and political theorist Hannah Arendt. Arendt’s reporting on the 1961 trial of ex-Nazi Adolf Eichmann in The New Yorker—controversial both for her portrayal of Eichmann and the Jewish councils—introduced her now-famous concept of the “Banality of Evil.” Using footage from the actual Eichmann trial and weaving a narrative that spans three countries, von Trotta beautifully turns the often invisible passion for thought into immersive, dramatic cinema. An Official Selection at the Toronto International and New York Jewish Film Festivals, Hannah Arendt also co-stars Klaus Pohl as philosopher Martin Heidegger, Nicolas Woodeson as New Yorker editor William Shawn, and two-time Oscar Nominee Janet McTeer (Albert Nobbs) as novelist Mary McCarthy

2012, 113 min, NR
In English
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS The Jerk film

The Jerk

7 pm, Monday March 3, 2014

(Universal Pictures) Directed by Carl Reiner. Steve Martin is hilarious in this outrageous film about rags to riches to rags to- you guessed it-riches again. Off-the-wall comedy and abundant sight gags ensue in this Martin fan’s delight of laughs and romance.

1979, 93 minutes, Rated R
In English
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Stories Fill the Void film

Fill the Void (Israel)

7 pm, Monday Feb 24, 2014

Fill the Void tells the story of an Orthodox Hasidic family from Tel Aviv. Eighteen-year-old Shira is the youngest daughter of the family. She is about to be married off to a promising young man of the same age and background. It is a dream-come-true, and Shira feels prepared and excited. On Purim, her twenty-eight-year-old sister, Esther, dies while giving birth to her first child. The pain and grief that overwhelm the family postpone Shira’s promised match. Everything changes when an offer is proposed to match Yochay – the late Esther‘s husband – to a widow from Belgium. Yochay feels it‘s too early, although he realizes that sooner or later he must seriously consider getting married again. When the girls’ mother finds out that Yochay may leave the country with her only grandchild, she proposes a match between Shira and the widower. Shira will have to choose between her heart’s wish and her family duty.

2012, 90 min, NR
English Subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Stories The Great Beauty film

The Great Beauty (Italy)

7 pm, Monday Feb 17, 2014

Journalist Jep Gambardella (the dazzling Toni Servillo, Il Divo and Gomorrah) has charmed and seduced his way through the lavish nightlife of Rome for decades. Since the legendary success of his one and only novel, he has been a permanent fixture in the city's literary and social circles, but when his sixty-fifth birthday coincides with a shock from the past, Jep finds himself unexpectedly taking stock of his life, turning his cutting wit on himself and his contemporaries, and looking past the extravagant nightclubs, parties, and cafés to find Rome in all its glory: a timeless landscape of absurd, exquisite beauty. Directed by Paolo Sorrentino.

2013, 142 min, NR
In Italian w/ English subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Stories Unfinished Song film

Unfinished Song (UK)

7 pm, Monday, February 10, 2014

The funny and uplifting In Sarah Polley's documentary Unfinished Song is a story about Arthur (Terence Stamp), a curmudgeonly old soul, who is perfectly content sticking with his dull daily routine until his beloved wife (Vanessa Redgrave) introduces him to a local seniors singing group. The group is led by the youthful and charming Elizabeth (Gemma Arterton) and her unexpected friendship with Arthur reignites his passion for new adventures and shows us all life should be celebrated at any age.

2013, 93 min, Rated PG-13
in English
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Stories We Tell film

Stories We Tell (Canada)

7 pm, Monday, February 3, 2014

In Sarah Polley's documentary Stories We Tell, the director/actress explores a family secret. She had discovered that her biological father was not actually the person she knew as her father; in an effort to fully understand this long-held family secret, Polley interviews every member of her family. The man she thought of as her dad writes his version of events and narrates his story as a recurring voiceover throughout the film.
A.O. Scott writes in The New York Times, "This is one of the boldest and most exciting films I've seen in the last six months, and the kind of experience that has the power to alter your perception of the world."

2012, 108 min, Rated PG-13
in English
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS The Attack film

The Attack (France)

7 pm, Monday, January 27, 2014

Official Selection at the 2012 Telluride Film Festival and 2012 Toronto International Film Festival.
Amin Jaafari is an Israeli Palestinian surgeon, fully assimilated into Tel Aviv society. He has a loving wife, an exemplary career, and many Jewish friends. But his picture perfect life is turned upside down when a suicide bombing in a restaurant leaves nineteen dead, and the Israeli police inform him that his wife Sihem, who also died in the explosion, was responsible. Convinced of her innocence, Amin abandons the relative security of his adopted homeland and enters the Palestinian territories in pursuit of the truth. Once there, he finds himself in ever more dangerous places and situations. Determined, he presses on seeking answers to questions he never thought he would be asking. The Attack is adapted from Yasmina Khadra's international bestseller of the same name. Originally published in 2005, the novel has been translated into more than 40 languages and has won numerous awards worldwide.

2012, 102 min, Rated R
in Arabic and Hebrew with English subtitles
Admission: $8



The Hunt (Denmark)

7 pm, Monday, January 13, 2014

Written and Directed by Thomas Vinterberg, The Hunt is a disturbing depiction of how a lie becomes the truth when gossip, doubt and malice are allowed to flourish and ignite a witch-hunt that soon threatens to destroy an innocent man's life.
Mads Mikkelsen plays Lucas, a highly-regarded school teacher who has been forced to start over having overcome a tough divorce. Just as things are starting to go his way, his life is shattered. An untruthful remark throws the small community into a collective state of hysteria. The lie is spreading and Lucas is forced to fight a lonely fight for his life and dignity.
The film won three prizes at Cannes, and was nominated for several film awards including a BAFTA. "Gripping, Vinterberg has come storming back." The Guardian

2012, 115 min, Rated R
in Danish, English and Polish with English subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Since Otar Left film

Since Otar Left (France)

7 pm, Monday, January 6, 2014

Winner of the prestigious Critics' Week Grand Prize at the Cannes Film Festival and featuring a trio of stunning performances, Julie Bertuccelli's Since Otar Left is a bittersweet tale of deception and affection.
Three Georgian women; the strong-willed matriarch, Eka (Esther Gorintin), her long-suffering daughter, Marina (Nino Khomassouridze), and rebellious granddaughter, Ada (Dinara Droukarova); all live together in their stately-yet-crumbling apartment in contemporary Tbilisi, the capital of the former Soviet republic. Eka pines for her beloved son Otar, a physician who is now a construction worker in Paris. Marina is deeply resentful of her mother's obsession with her absent brother, while Ada endures their bickering and yearns for a more adventurous existence. When a friend of Otar's calls with tragic news, Marina and Ada must make a seemingly impossible choice: Do they keep Eka from learning the truth?

2003, 102 min, Not Rated
in French with English subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS The Sapphires film

The Sapphires (Australia)

7 pm, Monday, December 30, 2013

Inspired by a true story, director Wayne Blair's debut feature The Sapphires follows four Aboriginal Australian girls as they are transformed into a soulful singing group by a kindhearted musician, and later travel to Vietnam to entertain battle-weary U.S. troops. Cynthia (Miranda Tapsell), Gail (Deborah Mailman), Julie (Jessica Mauboy) and Kay (Shari Sebbens) are four singers with lots of passion, but precious little talent. Recognizing something special in the way the girls perform, soulful talent scout Dave (Chris O'Dowd) offers to shape them into a Motown-inspired soul group and get them out on the road. But when their first gig turns out to be on the front lines of Vietnam -- where death has become part of the daily routine -- the ambitious young singers realize they've got their work cut out for them.

2013, 103 min, Rated PG-13
in English
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Kon-Tiki film

Kon-Tiki (Norway)

7 pm, Monday, December 23, 2013

The historical seafaring epic, Kon-Tiki tells the story of legendary explorer Thor Heyerdal's 4,300 mile crossing of the Pacific on a balsa wood raft in 1947, in an effort to prove it was possible for South Americans to settle in Polynesia in pre-Columbian times.
The film was nominated for the Best Foreign Language Oscar at the 85th Academy Awards, and nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film at the 70th Golden Globe Awards.

2012, 118 min, Rated PG-13
in English & Norwegian with subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS The Chorus film

The Chorus (France)

7 pm, Monday, December 16, 2013

The new teacher at a severely administered boys' boarding school works to positively affect the students' lives through music.
Directed by Christophe Barratier, The Chorusem> stars Gerard Jugnot, Francois Berleand and Kad Merad and was nominated for 2005 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film of the Year (France) as well as for Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Song for the song "Look To Your Path (Vois Sur Ton Chemin)" by Bruno Coulais (composer) and Christophe Barratier (lyricist).

2004, 97 min, Rated PG-13
in French with English subtitles
Admission: $8


BIG ARTS Simon and the Oaks film

Simon and the Oaks (Sweden)

7 pm, Monday, December 9, 2013

This epic drama is the gripping story of about two families and their friendship in Sweden's Gothenburg in the 1940s and 1950s.
Simon and the Oaks is told from the perspective of young Simon Larsson, who learns that he's an adopted child who has a Jewish father from Germany. When Simon meets Isak, the son of a wealthy Jewish bookseller who has fled Nazi persecution in Germany, Simon is dazzled by the books, art and music he encounters in their home. Isak, on the other hand, draws comfort from learning to do something with his hands, helping Simon's dad make boats. As the two households slowly merge, they connect in unexpected ways.
After WWII Simon travels to explore his roots - a journey that leads to the basic mysteries of the human life.

2011, 122 min, Not Rated
in Swedish and German with English subtitles
Admission: $8


All films subject to change

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