¿Qué Culpa Tiene el Niño?
In these rather unprogressive times, going to the movies can provide a much-needed sense of escape. For 24 years, the San Diego Latino Film Festival has provided such a sense while also showcasing important films and documentaries whose sole aim is to further broaden our horizons.
“In light of the current political situation, it seems like the film festival is even more important,” says Ethan van Thillo, executive director of the Media Arts Center San Diego and founder of the festival. “This idea of an event that celebrates diversity, that builds bridges instead of walls and that tries to provide a more positive portrayal of the Latino community instead of the stereotypical news we’re hearing.”
And while we usually avoid clichéd statements like “there’s something for everyone,” in this case we feel confident saying just that. Highlights from the fest include cute rom-coms (¿Qué Culpa Tiene el Niño? and Alma), serious dramas about war and history (El Amparo and La Carga) and profound documentaries (Dolores and Etiqueta No Rigurosa). There are also horror films, animation, short film showcases and premieres from former San Diegans Shinpei Takeda (Ghost Magnet Roach Motel) and Kate Trumbull-LaValle (Ovarian Psycos).
“Tons of people submit their films from all over the world,” says van Thillo, who adds that there were over 800 films submitted this year. “Diversity is key not just in the amount of countries represented, but in the genres we show. There’s a huge LGBT showcase every year, we have a family showcase, and we have very niche films as well.”
The film fest takes place from Thursday, March 16 and runs through Sunday, March 26. Most of the films are screened at AMC Fashion Valley (7037 Friars Road) in Mission Valley, but some will be screened at Digital Gym Cinema in North Park (2921 El Cajon Blvd.). There will also be special events like a food and wine tasting festival, as well as opening and closing night parties. Prices range from $225 for all-access passes to $11.50 for individual screenings. See sdlatinofilm.com for full schedule and details.
STRIKE A CHORD
After a brief hiatus, the San Diego Music Awards returns to declare who’s who and what’s what in the local music scene. This year, performers include veterans of the scene such as The Creepy Creeps as well as relatively new and buzz-worthy bands such as The Schizophonics and The Verigolds. Doors open for the awards at 6 p.m on Tuesday, March 21 at the House of Blues (1055 Fifth Ave). General admission tickets go for $36, but VIP tickets are also available. Proceeds go toward the San Diego Music Foundation’s Guitar for Schools programs. For those who can’t make it on Tuesday, there will be various showcases throughout the city with spotlights on specific genres such as blues, indie-rock and acoustic folk. For more information, visit sandiegomusicawards.com.
Photo by Alex Brown
While most folks will be appropriating Irish culture on St. Patrick’s Day, the culture capitalists over at A Ship in the Woods (3007 Felicita Road) will be paying respect to the special day by throwing their own version of an Irish Wake. Instead of celebrating the death of St. Patrick, Ship’s new art and music exhibition, Wake, will feature artists and scientists questioning the vanishing ecosystem, climate change and decline of our political system. Over a dozen artists will show work including William Feeney, Marisol Rendon and Scott Nielsen, among others, and there will also be musical performances by indie-experimenters Xiu Xiu and Kid606. It happens on Friday, March 17 from 6 to 11 p.m. Tickets are $15 plus $3 to park at the neighboring Felicita County Park. shipinthewoods.com