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Film fest keeps growing

BRECKENRIDGE – Hollywood. New York. Breckenridge.

You’ve seen the bumper stickers that name some small town after the biggies. But these days, Breckenridge may be building a reputation as one of the nation’s premiere film festivals.

Every year – with the exception of 2001 after the terrorist attacks – the Breckenridge Festival of Film has grown. This year’s festival boasts four more premieres (meaning the mainstream “biggies”), bringing the count to 10, and 40 independent films. Plus, there are the University of Colorado at Boulder’s film program; the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) film series; celebrity forums, indie film forums; a free children’s program; and of course, parties four nights in a row.



“We’re showing a more artistic blend of films this year,” said executive director Suzanne Burke. “And in the past, we’ve been pretty good about getting premieres that win – or are nominated for – Oscars.”

The festival begins Thursday with a pre-premiere four-course dinner at the Quandary Grille in Breckenridge, followed by the premiere of “Matchstick Men” starring Nicolas Cage and Sam Rockwell.



Cage plays an obsessive-compulsive person who’s in for a big change when his free-spirited teen-age daughter (Alison Lohman) comes into his life. She not only disrupts his peace of mind but also jeopardizes his partnership with a con man (Rockwell).

Tickets are $15 for the premiere or $65 for the premiere and dinner. “Matchstick Men” begins at 9 p.m. at Summit High School’s auditorium.

If you want to eat a quick bite elsewhere and take in a double feature, don’t miss the premiere of “Anything Else” starring Woody Allen, Danny DeVito, Stockard Channing, Jimmy Fallon, Jason Biggs and Christina Ricci at 7 p.m. at the high school. The film is a contemporary romantic comedy (set where else but New York City) about the relationship between an older man and his younger protege (hmmm… there’s a surprise for Allen).

A post premiere cocktail party at the Quandary Grille follows the premieres Thursday.

Friday’s party involves a night of music and movie madness at 10 p.m. at Cecilia’s in Breckenridge. At 10 p.m. Saturday, the smooth sounds of Dado Sa Trio fill the Blue River Bistro for Breckenridge’s best martini event. Sunday’s wrap party at 9 p.m. at the Breckenridge Brewery immediately follows the closing premiere, and it’s the last chance to meet festival participants.

Speaking of participants – this year, there’s hardly a film that isn’t accompanied by a filmmaker. It’s the largest attendance of filmmakers in the festival’s history, Burke said.

In addition to premieres including “Mambo Italiano,” “The Dummy,” “The Event” and “Out of Time,” the festival includes a free University of Colorado film studies program which presents “Meet Me in St. Louis” at 4 p.m. Friday and “All That Jazz” at 4 p.m. Saturday with film analysis and discussion by assistant professor of film studies Ernesto R. Acevedo-Munoz. The GLBT series features nine films, including two full-length movies.

“There’s a more unique blend,” Burke said about the GLBT series selections. “It has less of a mainstream appeal and more of an artistic flair.”

All-day independent film showings run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. The winners of each independent film category will run from 1-6:30 p.m. Sunday.

Two hospitality suites – which will have the most updated schedules – are at the Hyatt Main Street Station and at 229 S. Main St. in Breckenridge. For more information, call (970) 453-6200 or visit http://www.breckfilmfest.com.

Kimberly Nicoletti can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 245, or by e-mail at knicoletti@summitdaily.com.


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