“Everyone will find a film that they want to see in this year’s lineup,” Artistic Director Catherine Wyler said. During its fourth year, the High Falls Film Festival is once again showcasing the talented films and videos created by women in front of and behind the camera on an international level.

If it’s variety you crave, look no further. This year’s festival, running from Nov. 10th-14th, features movies ranging from “the nightlife of a graffiti artist, New York hairdressers teaching their trade to women in Kabul … and the women wrestlers of the 1950s,” Wyler said.

With 41 feature-length films debuting at High Falls, a plethora of cultures and ideas are represented on the screen from Pakistan to the Netherlands to China.

The festival opens with the screening of “Sideways” on Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. at the Dryden Theater at the George Eastman House. Considered “one of the most talked about films at the Toronto Film Festival this year,” Wyler believes this to be the perfect start to an exciting week. Written and directed by “About Schmidt’s” Alexander Payne, Wyler calls the characters “vivid and real … and very, very funny.”

The closing film this year, “Off the Map,” will play on Saturday night, Nov. 13th at the Dryden Theater. Directed by Campbell Scott and the screenplay by acclaimed playwright Joan Ackermann, much excitement has surrounded the showing of this much anticipated film.

Joan Allen, Amy Brennerman and Sam Elliot star in this “offbeat comedy” and Scott, Allen and Ackermann will be in Rochester for the festival and answer questions from the audience following the screening of their film.

One of the recipients of the Susan B. Anthony “Failure Is Impossible” awards this year, Joan, as well as Sally Kellerman, will be honored at the festival. “There are no short cuts to success in the movie industry even for the most gifted actors,” notes Wyler.

“Sally’s drive and determination are exactly what anyone in the industry needs to achieve greatness. We honor Joan for her laser-like focus on her work as an actor, both on stage and on screen – the kind of focus that separates the good from the great. We could not be more honored to have both Sally and Joan with us at the festival.” The award ceremony will take place on Nov. 13 at the Dryden Theatre with the festivities beginning at 8 p.m.

Tickets for the High Falls Film Festival are on sale now at all Wegmans “That’s the Ticket” locations as well as online at http://www.highfallsfilmfestival.com.

For those who would rather purchase tickets at the festival, they will be available for purchase at the theater an hour before the show time. For a full program guide, be sure to check out the Web site.

This highly successful and original film festival only comes once a year to the frigid land of Rochester – be sure to check it out and be a part of this amazing and one-of-a-kind event in its celebration of the diversity and hard work exhibited by the women involved in the creation of these 41 distinct films.

Gray can be reached at


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