Valley Journal: Country star, St. Ignatius native Tim Ryan kicks off Polson film festival in January
By Jaci Webb
POLSON – The Flathead Lake International Cinemafest, FLIC, is celebrating its seventh year with an amazing array of special guests coming Jan. 25-27.
One of the most familiar names for Polson-area folks is Tim Ryan Rouillier, an award-winning country singer/songwriter who grew up in St. Ignatius and played bars in the Mission Valley as a teenager.
Rouillier, who uses Tim Ryan as his professional name, will help kick off the festival on Friday, Jan. 25, at 7 p.m. with a special screening of his symphonic memoir musical, “My Grandpa’s Fiddle: The Soundtrack of My Life.” The showing at Showboat Cinema on Main Street will be followed by a Q & A with Ryan, an event bound to be as colorful as the songwriter himself.
Another special guest for the 2019 FLIC is comedian and Emmy-Award winning comedy writer, Adam Yenser, who will share insights from his work on “The Ellen DeGeneras Show” at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 26. Gerald R. Molen, who grew up in Great Falls, and produced many hit movies, will present the film “Schindler’s List,” which he produced, at noon on Jan. 27, which is International Holocaust Remembrance Day.
FLIC attracts film entries from across the world, and last year two-dozen filmmakers attended the event. The festival features Montana-made films, Indigenous films, and films about the environment, as well as documentary and narrative shorts and features.
Ryan has spent more than three decades in Nashville, writing and recording music with many of the greats, including Randy Travis and George Strait. But Ryan never stopped loving the people and the land of Montana and a few years back, he decided to write a love letter to Montana. His heartfelt lyrics and witty storytelling are the soundtrack to the documentary film that Ryan spent years putting together. Ryan shot hundreds of hours of video across Montana over a period of four years and then learned how to edit the footage for the film. Ryan enlisted FLIC director David King to produce the video of Ryan’s live stage presentation. “My Grandpa’s Fiddle” has aired on PBS stations across the country and so far, upwards of 100 million people have viewed it.
Like the title says, Ryan’s grandfather, Vic Cordier, was a fiddle player, who taught Ryan to love music as much as he did. They played many shows together over the years, starting when Ryan was just seven years old.
In a recent telephone interview from his home in Nashville, Ryan talked about his connection to the old-timers in the Mission Valley, especially his grandfather. Ryan’s speaking voice is as melodious as his pitch-perfect tenor. It’s full of cheerfulness and humor.
“I loved being around the older people, the guitar players, the storytellers,” Ryan said.
By the time Ryan was in seventh grade, he was a guitar player and the lead singer of a band. He would play bars in the Mission Valley, including Diamond Horseshoe on Flathead Lake in Polson where the crowd was so rowdy, a fight broke out many nights.
“The bartender would say, ‘If a fight breaks out, don’t stop playing.’ These guys would be flinging tables across the room and the dancers didn’t even know what was going on back there because we were still playing music.”
Ryan and his wife Peggy moved to Nashville in 1987 to make their mark. Ryan wanted to become a professional songwriter with a record deal and Peggy wanted to “reach high in finance,” Ryan said.
“I got signed to CBS Records within three months and had a hit record out nine months later,” Ryan said.
That charting hit was “Dance in Circles,” a lively, but tender tune about dancing with your sweetheart. The video for the song was shot on his home turf in St. Ignatius and his grandfather is the fiddler in it. Ryan’s name started to swirl around star circles in Nashville and he got offers to join bands, including Restless Heart and Little Big Town.
“But I wanted to be out by myself. The great thing is I get to tell my story,” Ryan said.
These days, Ryan is working on putting together a live tour of “My Grandpa’s Fiddle,” featuring symphonic orchestras across the country. And where will he kick it off? Montana, of course. Look for it in 2020.
By Caleb M. Soptelean
POLSON — Sixty-eight independent films ranging in length from 2 minutes to one hour, 53 minutes will be featured this week at Showboat Cinemas, 416 Main St.
FLIC co-chairs Frank Tyro and David W. King are excited about this year’s event, which will also include noon-hour film showings for students at Polson High School for the first time.
The event, which will be held Friday-Sunday, Jan. 26-28, is intentionally placed between the NFL conference championship games and the Super Bowl.
King said he loves being involved with FLIC, noting it takes up four months of his time each year.
“It’s such a fun thing to see all these different films and interact with these filmmakers and see the community embrace independent film,” he said.
King is one of three judges so he watches every film. There were 110 submitted for this year’s event, including those that were not selected.
“We have spirited discussions about the films and what the judges like,” he said.
He specifically noted “Unbridled,” a story about sex trafficking and the healing and redemption available for both girls and horses with an abusive past.
John David Ware, a Los Angeles-based filmmaker, directed the film, which is the longest at the event and will be shown at 7 p.m., Saturday. It features Eric Roberts, an Academy Award-nominated actor.
Tyro, a Pablo resident, got involved with FLIC after working with the International Wildlife Film Festival in Missoula, which was started by the late Charles Jonkel, an environmental studies professor at the University of Montana.
Tyro co-directed “Walking Bear Comes Home,” a 56-minute film about the life and work of Jonkel, whom Tyro said was instrumental in getting the U.S., Canada, Denmark (Greenland), Russia and Norway to establish quotas for polar bear hunting through the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
When Jonkel started his work in 1966 there were 5,000 polar bears in the world but now their population is estimated between 20,000 and 25,000, Tyro said.
Walking Bear Comes Home will be shown at 4 p.m. Saturday.
Fifteen countries are represented at the cinemafest, and filmmakers from Poland and Canada have films included.
A couple from Poland created “Cinema Labyrinths,” an interactive film that allows the audience to choose the direction the story proceeds. It will be shown at 2 p.m. Saturday.
A free kids’ screening will be held from 8:30-10:30 a.m. Saturday. It will include a free breakfast provided by the Polson Rotary Club.
Encore screenings will follow the cinemafest Monday-Thursday next week from 4 p.m. nightly showing the best of the ‘fest. A schedule of those films will be posted on FLICPolson.com shortly after the conclusion of the three-day event.
This year’s films will be shown in Digital Cinema Projection, or DCP, which King described as “cutting-edge” technology that is being provided thanks to the volunteer work of Jim Ereaux.
FLIC has been voted one of the 10 best winter film festivals in the nation by Audience Awards.com, King said.
Tickets are $40 for a pass or $5 per two-hour block and can be purchased online in advance or at the door.
Schedules are available at motels, restaurants and businesses in Polson or at FLICPolson.com.
“Word has gotten out,” says David King, co-chair and producer of the Flathead Lake International Cinemafest, of the annual film festival on the south end of Northwest Montana’s largest lake.
What started six years ago as an effort to brighten the gloomy days of winter with film has blossomed into an event gaining accolades across the industry, King said. This year’s festival runs from Jan. 26 to 28 at Showboat Cinemas in downtown Polson and features 68 films in a variety of genres from around the world.
“We’re gaining traction and credibility within the film industry on a global scale,” King said.
In 2013, a group of local film fans decided to organize a festival to add a shot of culture to the long, cold winters. While some film festivals have specific focuses — like the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival or the International Wildlife Film Festival, both in Missoula — the Flathead Lake International Cinemafest, or “FLIC,” knows no boundaries.
“There’s something for everyone,” said Frank Tyro, one of the festival’s founders and a filmmaker. “We have everything from 2-minute short films to 2-hour long features. This is a great opportunity for people to see all sorts of different films.”
The festival’s program illuminates Tyro’s assertion. “A Month” is a 26-minute narrative short about a blind woman living with her four sisters who take care of the woman at their individual homes one month at a time. “Dirty Freedom” is a documentary about 21 women who take on the challenge of climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. “Elephants in the Coffee” is about the struggle between Indian coffee growers and endangered elephants that live nearby.
This year’s festival also features more than a dozen films from Iran. King said the festival’s board received more than two-dozen submissions from Iran, proof that the Polson film festival has established itself within the global film community.
“It was surprising, but word has apparently gotten out in the Iranian film community that the Flathead Lake International Cinemafest is a great festival,” he said. “There are some truly beautiful films coming out of Iran right now.”
Tyro’s submission to the festival is called “Waking Bear Comes Home: The Life and Work of Chuck Jonkel.” Tyro, who retired from Salish Kootenai College after teaching film production and photography, made numerous trips with Jonkel, a renowned and respected bear researcher, to Churchill, Manitoba to see polar bears. Tyro always wanted to make a film about Jonkel and finally got to work on it a few years ago in coordination with the Great Bear Foundation and Caribou Crossing. The film premiered last year at the International Wildlife Film Festival, just months after Jonkel’s death.
“I always wanted to do a film about Jonkel because he led an amazing life,” Tyro said.
Another highlight of the event will be Cinematic Labyrinths, a live and interactive movie where the audience decides what happens next. Two Polish filmmakers, Dawid Marcinkowski and Katarzyna Kifert, are presenting the film, and will be available for questions from the audience. King said one of the highlights of the festival is that attendees get to meet and speak with the filmmakers themselves.
After six years, King said he is proud of what the Flathead Lake International Cinemafest has become.
“We feel like we’re on the verge of something really big, and we’re just having a blast,” he said.
For additional information, visit www.flicpolson.com.
POLSON — They like to let people know that theirs is the most beautiful film festival in the world.
Filmmakers from places as far away as Iran have taken notice of Polson’s Flathead Lake International Cinemafest (FLIC) that celebrates its sixth anniversary next weekend.
“We have filmmakers who come here and tell (us) it’s the best-run film festival that they’ve ever been involved with,” said David W. King, who co-chairs the festival with founder Frank Tyro. “That’s really encouraging considering the fact that we’re a small town.”
This year’s film festival has been recognized as one of the top 15 winter film festivals in the United States by the Audience Awards.
This year it will run from Friday, Jan. 26, to Sunday, Jan. 28. It features 68 films from 15 countries.
That’s almost twice as many films that the festival showed in its first year.
But, even more importantly, King said the quality of the films continues to get better each year.
This year, organizers had to turn down 40 entries.
“A lot of those were really hard to say no to,” King said. “We only have so much capacity if we’re going to run it on a two-and-a-half-day schedule. The next step might be to make it a little bit longer.”
The festival, which showcases independent films at the Showboat Cinema on Polson’s Main Street, not only draws filmmakers from far and wide but also an appreciative audience that continues to grow each year.
The audience comes to see the variety of interesting films, and its members also have a chance to hear from the people who produce the films. This year, about 20 filmmakers are expected to attend the festival.
Showboat Cinema owner Becky Dupuis said while the focus at many larger film festivals is on getting a film noticed and sold, the filmmakers who come to Polson are looking for something different.
“It’s a little more of a kinder, gentler film festival,” Dupuis said. “It’s not as intimidating. A lot of them have never had a film in a festival before. I think the audience is less critical and more accepting. The audience is just interested in seeing something different and having that opportunity to actually talk to the filmmaker.”
“We’ve had some world premiers here, some really beautiful films,” Tyro said. “People are used to going to a theater and seeing a Hollywood shoot-them-up action film. This is quite a bit different.”
King likens the Polson film festival to the early days of Robert Redford’s Sundance Film Festival in Utah.
“They had to have their first years too,” he said. “They weren’t very big when they started. We’re in our sixth year now and we’re gaining credibility. Slowly, people from all over the world are hearing about us, including Iran. We’re not sure why but we’ve received quite a few films from filmmakers in Iran.”
This year’s festival includes an entire bloc devoted to their entries.
King said this festival includes many films that are very well done.
The Canadian film “4 Dancers’ Dreams” was one of his favorites. The film follows four young dancers in their final year of dance school.
“I love aspiration films that show people trying to achieve something,” King said. “It’s just beautifully shot. There is a lot of beautiful dance footage in it.”
The filmmaker, Nancy J. Lilley, will attend the festival.
Tyro is the co-director of the film “Walking Bear Comes Home: The Life and Work of Chuck Jonkel.” Tyro worked with the famous bear researcher for almost 30 years in his work in the Arctic studying polar bears. Jonkel died in April 2016.
The documentary examines the life, work and legacy of the legendary biologist who spent much of his life in Montana. It includes archival footage of Jonkel’s early polar bear research, and interviews with the researcher, his family and friends.
Tyro worked with Great Bear Foundation executive director Shannon Donahue to produce the 56-minute film.
The festival also includes a live presentation called Cinematic Labyrinths presented by The Kissinger Twins, Dawid Marcinkowski and Katarzyna Kifert. The two will travel from Europe to demonstrate their live, interactive, non-linear storytelling showcase that puts the audience in the driver’s seat.
“It’s the first time we’ve ever had anything like it,” Tyro said.
In another first, all the films have been converted by Polson’s Jim Ereaux to the format used in theaters like the Showboat.
“The beauty of that is all the films will be presented in the way the filmmakers had envisioned,” King said. “We aren’t messing with their chosen format. If anything, we’re improving the quality.”
The film festival couldn’t happen without the help from many different members of the community.
King spends several months every year going through all the entries and helping to decide which ones will make the cut.
“I love movies. I love films,” King said. “And I love the collaboration with the people in the community that makes this possible. I think I’ve made some lifelong friends through it all.”
“I love the opportunity to be able to bring something different to our community,” Dupuis said. “We certainly couldn’t do this by ourselves. … We’re in the business of hosting parties and this is a big one. It’s really nice to be given the opportunity to be that host.”
Tyro is encouraged by the variety of differing viewpoints that the films offer to audiences in Polson.
“Bringing all these different viewpoints to Polson and to the reservation are, I think, a really important part of the whole festival,” he said. “I think that’s why it’s been successful.”
To learn more about the festival and a schedule for the films, including encore showings, people can visit flicpolson.com.
The Flathead Lake International Cinemafest (FLIC) premieres its sixth annual winter film festival during the weekend of January 26-28, 2018 at the Showboat Cinema on Main Street in Polson, Montana.
FLIC 2018 will screen full-length features, shorts, animated films, and documentaries. True to its name, FLIC once again offers a broad selection of international films from 15 countries. In addition, there are seven films produced in Montana, which is always of particular interest to attendees.
FLIC officially gets underway Friday, January 26th with an informal gathering from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at Vine & Tap at 218 Main Street, Polson. Film showings on two screens begin that evening at 7 p.m. at the Showboat Cinema, 416 Main Street, Polson. On Saturday, January 27th, there’s a break in screenings from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. for a second informal gathering at the Vine & Tap on Main Street. Complimentary hors d’oeuvres are served each evening.
The FLIC judges have once again enjoyed discovering FLIC 2018’s gems. This year’s standout films include 4 Dancers’ Dreams, by Canadian producer/director Nancy J. Lilley, who will be chairing a Q&A following her screening. This beautiful documentary follows four young dancers through their graduating year from dance and high school. All of them want to go pro, and they share their private dreams and ambitions, their setbacks and triumphs. The film travels to Germany for the International Dance Organization Tap Competition, to Seattle, WA for the Regional Semi-Finals of the Youth America Grand Prix for Ballet, and to competitions around the lower Mainland of Vancouver, BC. 4 Dancers’ Dreams explores what it takes to become a professional dancer and where its four featured performers eventually land.
Another strong picture this year is Walking Bear Comes Home: The Life and Work of Chuck Jonkel, which screens on Saturday, January 27 at 4 pm and again during the encore screenings the week following the festival. This documentary film examines the life, work, and legacy of a legendary biologist and conservationist who spent much of his life in Montana, but whose work and legacy reach around the world. With archival footage of Jonkel’s early polar bear research and extensive interviews with Jonkel, his family, friends and colleagues spanning his more-than-fifty year career, the film examines the many facets of Chuck Jonkel, from his work as a biologist to his impact on the lives and communities he worked in and cared about. Jonkel is the only person to have done extensive studies on black bears, polar bears and grizzly bears in his lifetime.
The film is a collaboration between Shannon Donahue, Executive Director of the Great Bear Foundation (GBF) and Frank Tyro, Board President of the Foundation, FLiC Co-chair and FLiC Board President. The draft script was part of Donahue’s master’s thesis at the University of Montana. She lives in Haines, Alaska where she runs the GBF northern office and conducts research on Chilkoot River brown bears. She worked with Jonkel from 2007 until his death in 2016. The film was nearly 10 years in the making and Donahue and Tyro spent 6 intensive months sending script and film drafts back and forth from Montana to Alaska to fine-tune the film to its PBS broadcast length of 56 minutes and 40 seconds.
Frank Tyro has worked in broadcast media for 49 years as a manager/engineer, producing cultural documentaries and teaching. A Q&A session with Tyro will follow the screening of the film on January 27 at the Showboat Cinemas on Polson’s main street.
In a live presentation called Cinematic Labyrinths, The Kissinger Twins, Dawid Marcinkowski and Katarzyna Kifert, travel from Europe to demonstrate a live, interactive and non-linear storytelling showcase, in which they explain the non-linear storytelling concept, talk about film and interactive media, their inspirations, and present their best online interactive and transmedia projects. This fascinating appearance is scheduled for Saturday, January 27th at 2pm on Screen 2.
Saturday morning’s fun begins at 8:30 a.m. with FLIC’s popular free family movie screening. This year’s film is Sing, featuring a hustling theater impresario’s attempt to save his theater with a singing competition featuring humanoid animals. Attendees are encouraged to arrive in their pajamas and enjoy a free breakfast sponsored and prepared by the Polson Rotary Club. This non-ticketed screening is free, and seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.
As with previous years, many of FLIC’s screenings will include question and answer sessions with participating filmmakers from across the country. Visit FLICPolson.com and see the list and bios of some of the filmmaker attendees this year, which numbers well over a dozen.
The festival closes on Sunday, January 28th with an awards show at the Showboat Cinema, where approximately 20 awards will be handed out to films, actors, and filmmakers in various categories. The Viewer’s Choice award will also be given to the FLIC audience’s overall favorite film.
All films, times and events are subject to change. The entire FLIC 2018 program and screenings schedule is available for download at the FLICPolson.com website, where festival passes and individual screening tickets may also be purchased. Additional information on the festival is being updated online at www.flicpolson.com and Facebook; or email email@example.com.
The Flathead Lake International Cinemafest (FLIC) premiers its sixth annual winter film festival during the weekend of January 26-28, 2018 at the Showboat Cinema on Main Street in Polson, Montana.
FLIC has been recognized as one of the top 15 Winter Film Festivals in the United States by the Audience Awards. David W. King, FLIC Co-Chair and Producer shared, “We’re excited to bring a diverse slate of about 60 independent films to Polson and the Mission Valley for the sixth year in a row. Each year brings with it new cinematic treasures from around the world.”
FLIC 2018 will screen full-length features, shorts, animated films, and documentaries. True to its name, FLIC once again offers a broad selection of international films from 18 countries that include India, Australia, Canada, Spain, Taiwan, Turkey, Croatia, Iran, Israel, and the USA. In addition, there are several films produced in Montana, a trend that keeps growing.
FLIC kicks off on Friday, January 26th with an informal gathering from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at a TBA Polson location (see FLIC Facebook page for updates). Film showings on two screens begin that evening at 7 p.m. On Saturday, January 27th, there’s a break in film showings from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. for a second informal gathering at the Vine & Tap on Main Street. Complimentary hors d’oeuvres are served each evening.
The FLIC judges have enjoyed unearthing FLIC 2018’s gems. This year’s standout films include “Iron”, in which a young woman named Lily Cohen escapes the crowded tenements of early 1900’s New York to take on a demanding railway job. Determined to work on a steam engine, a position not traditionally held by women of that era, Lilly endures the hostility of her fellow railroad workers while finding her own inner strength.
Another strong picture is “Game”, in which a new kid shows up at the high school boys’ basketball tryouts and instantly makes an impression. Will talent and drive be enough to make the team? Game is inspirational on many levels and the FLIC judges believe it is destined to be one of FLIC 2018’s finest.
In the Montana-grown documentary, The Gardener, world-renowned French composer and pianist Julien Brocal shares an introspective and hopeful perspective on nature, art, and human connection, bringing his environmental philosophy to life through music. Director Kathy Kasic filmed The Gardener at Tippet Rise, an 11,000-acre art center in Montana.
In a live presentation titled “Anatomy of a Film & Television Career”, FLIC Producer and Co-Chair David W. King will recount his career in Hollywood, which included Producing at Disney, Universal Cartoon Studios, and stints at many other studios and networks. King will share film clips and anecdotes in an informal, conversational manner that invites audience participation. This fall, King accepted an invitation to present “Anatomy of a Film & Television Career” at two University of Montana Entertainment Management classes.
Saturday morning begins at 8:30 a.m. with a FLIC’s popular free family movie screening. This year’s film is Sing, featuring a hustling theater impresario’s attempt to save his theater with a singing competition featuring humanoid animals. Attendees are encouraged to arrive in their pajamas and enjoy a free breakfast sponsored and prepared by the Polson Rotary Club. This non-ticketed screening is free, and seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.
As with previous years, many of FLIC’s screenings will include question and answer sessions with participating filmmakers from as far away as Poland. Stay tuned for more details, as FLIC’s grand weekend in January gets closer!
The festival closes on Sunday, January 28th with an awards show at the Showboat Cinema, where approximately 20 awards will be handed out to films, actors, and filmmakers in various categories.
All films, times and events are subject to change. Additional information on the festival is being updated online at www.flicpolson.com and Facebook; or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 2017 Flathead Lake International Cinemafest (FLIC) drew to a festive close Sunday afternoon with its Awards Show and dessert reception. Local film-lovers, sponsors, volunteers, and filmmakers from across the nation converged on Friday, January 20th for a rich, moving celebration of film and people.
FLIC 2017 screened full-length features, shorts, animated films, and documentaries. True to its name, FLIC once again offered a broad array of international films from countries that include Australia, Canada, Spain, Taiwan, Croatia, France, and the USA. In addition, there were 16 films produced in Montana, which is more than in any previous year. There will be encore screenings of FLIC’s best films from Monday through Thursday. The encore screening schedule is below and can be found on FLICPolson.com.
One of the more powerful FLIC 2017 moments was the standing ovation given 89 year-old Montana resident Bob Hayes, who runs about 30 races each year, cuts his firewood by hand, and does things the hard way to remain active and alive. Bob’s inspirational story is the subject of the documentary film, The Hard Way. The spry Hayes walked up front with his son Tom and Co-Director Jeremy Lurgio. The packed Showboat Cinemas theatre was electric that night. That same screening block featured this year’s FLIC 2017 Documentary Feature, the breathtaking North of Known, which profiles Gavin McClurg’s full, unsupported traverse of the Alaska Range by foot and paraglider. McClurg was in attendance, and also received a standing ovation as he went up front to answer questions. Gavin’s feats of bravery, skill, and endurance were amazing to behold, so, when he took the microphone and said he felt like a “wimp” compared to 89 year-old phenom Bob Hayes, the audience erupted in laughter. And that is when FLIC transcended film to touch the stars.
Many other special films, people, filmmakers, and film aficionados converged at FLIC 2017 to make it arguably the best in its 5 year run. Billed as “the most beautiful festival in the world”, FLIC got off to a delicious start at Lake Bar on Friday afternoon, where attendees met to celebrate the launch of the festival over Hors D’oeuvres. Screenings commenced at 7pm on the Showboat Theatres’ two screens, and continued through late Sunday afternoon, followed by the Awards Show and dessert reception. On Saturday evening, another packed social gathering was hosted by Vine & Tap. It’s exciting to see this much enthusiasm and celebration of the film arts on a cold winter weekend in late January.
FLIC keeps gaining in popularity, credibility, and recognition in the local community as well as the broader film community. Filmmakers traveled from New York, Connecticut, California, Idaho and across Montana to share their films and personal stories with enthusiastic audiences. Binge TV watching is popular in our connected culture. FLIC 2017 had its fair share of binge-movie-watchers! FLIC Co-Chair and Producer David W. King noted:
“Most people pick out a few films of interest and are happy with that. Then there are the hard-core FLIC Cinephiles – who stick around all day and into the evening, moving with resolve from one screening to the next, barely taking food breaks! And, regardless of film genre, they expressed delight over their self-imposed movie marathons of sorts! It was fun seeing them and exchanging knowing smiles over the fun we were all having.”
“All in all, I’d say FLIC 2017 was our best yet,” King said. “The films keep getting better (because we get to choose from a bigger pool of entries each year) and our audience and filmmakers are growing in their support and commitment. I sense that FLIC is here to stay and we already can’t wait for FLIC 2018!”
FLIC 2017’s winners and other honorees:
FLIC 2017 HONORABLE MENTION
POLSON THEATRES, INC.
Gary & Becky DuPuis and Howard & Ayron Pickerill
Many thanks to you and your ever-helpful staff for 5 years of giving this film festival a home. Without you, FLIC would be a pipe dream.
With much gratitude,the FLIC Committee and beyond
FLIC 2017 EXEMPLARY FILM JUDGE
Thank you for adjudicating over 500 films with characteristic panache; and for your five years of keen insight, good taste, and cinematic jurisprudence.
With much gratitude, The FLIC Committee and beyond.
FLIC Junior 2017 Best Picture – Honorable Mentions
Cradle, from the Republic of Iran, tells the charming story of a little Iranian girl who just wants to do her homework, but looking after grandpa and her baby sibling complicates things.
51.7HZ, from Taiwan, follows a space alien, a tribal youth, and a solitary whale, who conspire to transport the whale to a planet where its unique frequency can be understood.
FLIC Junior 2017 Best Picture
Praxis, from Taiwan. In this touching and poignant story, a young boy runs to keep ahead of a garbage truck in order to recycle what would otherwise be put in a landfill. He seeks maternal approval and dreams of luxury.
FLIC 2017 Best Film – Animation – Honorable Mention
Lilly Hits the Road. This is the third Lilly entry from Calgary, Canada’s Bum Family, a group of six cousins, ages 7 through 14. FLIC salutes young creatives like the Bum Family kids.
FLIC 2017 Best Film – Animation
Notorious Corn, the salty story of a small grain of corn with dreams about stardom and glory. Sometimes dreams of glory don’t go as anticipated.
FLIC 2017 Best Picture – Documentary Short – Honorable Mentions
The Hard Way tells the inspirational story of 89 year-old Bob Hayes, who runs 30 races each year, cuts his firewood by hand and does things the hard way to remain active and alive.
Travel Light follows American filmmakers as they backpack 500 miles across Spain’s Camino de Santiago, and capture their own experiences and the intimate stories of other pilgrims seeking truth on the Camino.
FLIC 2017 Best Picture – Documentary Short
The Walk, Polson resident Jim Ereaux’s third annual FLIC entry and second award. His brilliant film The Raving won the FLIC 2015 Judge’s Honorable Mention. The Walk depicts the Coast to Coast walk across Northern England in images and poetry.
FLIC 2017 Best Picture – Short – Honorable Mentions
My Life is Cinema, a quirky foreign film about filmmaking & the tensions of real life amidst fiction.
Audition, about a middle-aged actor who waits nervously for an audition that could salvage his career.
FLIC 2017 Best Picture – Short
La Vie, which was produced in Spain. La Vie tells the story of an old married couple, who embark on a journey that causes them to relive forgotten memories, even those deeply buried.
FLIC 2017 Best Female Actor – Honorable Mentions
Joely Fisher as Judy in Search Engines, in which a Thanksgiving gathering runs off the rails when people lose their cell reception.
Samantha Lyn Parry as Amy in Coming Clean, a touching love story about a young man with a mental health disorder who meets a young woman with troubles of her own.
FLIC 2017 Best Female Actor
Molly Pepper Piccirilli as Gala in Gala and Godfrey.
FLIC 2017 Best male Actor – Honorable Mentions
Steven Molony as Aaron in Oxenfree, the beautifully realized story of three estranged foster brothers who rediscover the ruins of their childhood kingdom ‘Oxenfree’…and face down the monster living within.
Adam Green, as Godfrey in Gala & Godfrey, a quirky love story about a divorced couple who remain attached in life and love in mysterious ways.
FLIC 2017 Best Male Actor
Bryan Ferriter as Danny in What Separates Us, portraying a young man immersed in a life of drinking and fighting, who meets Parker, a beautiful, talented art student with a bright future.
FLIC 2017 Best Indigenous Film – Honorable Mention
RezMade, the inspiring story in which Local Two Eagle School photography class students head to New York City for their first public show and have a life changing experience.
FLIC 2017 Best Indigenous Film
Ice Cream Man, an uplifting documentary about two brothers who defy the odds and launch their Kool Breeze Ice Cream truck business on Montana’s Blackfeet Reservation.
FLIC 2017 Documentary Feature – Honorable Mentions
Between, a visual and visceral tour de force in which women ski pros travel to some of the most exotic and challenging slopes in the world.
The Violin Alone, the unlikely pairing of two modern visionaries, Hungarian violin virtuoso Vilmos Olah, and Eric Funk, a contemporary classical composer from the heart of Montana.
FLIC 2017 Best Picture – Documentary Feature
North of Known, in which professional paragliders and adventurers Gavin McClurg and Dave Turner attempt a full, unsupported traverse of the Alaska Range by foot and paraglider.
FLIC 2017 People’s Choice
Travel Light, in which American filmmakers backpack 500 miles across Spain’s Camino de Santiago, and capture their own experiences and the intimate stories of other pilgrims seeking truth on the Camino.
FLIC 2017 Judges’ Honorable Mention
The Bug, the story of the most popular and beloved vehicle on Earth, the Volkswagen Beetle. This is Montana filmmaker Damon Ristau’s sequel to last year’s FLIC best documentary feature winner, the Bus.
FLIC 2017 Best Director – Honorable mentions
Scott Sterling, for The Violin Alone
Bryan Ferriter, for What Separates Us
FLIC 2017 Best Director
Kristin Ellingson for Gala & Godfrey, a film based on Ms. Ellingson’s outstanding screenplay and directed with panache and confidence.
FLIC 2017 Best Picture, Feature – Honorable Mentions
Oxenfree, in which three estranged foster brothers rediscover the ruins of their childhood kingdom ‘Oxenfree’…and face down the monster living within.
What Separates Us, the powerful personal journey of a young man immersed in a life of drinking and fighting, who meets Parker, a beautiful, talented art student with a bright future.
FLIC 2017 Best Picture – Feature
Gala & Godfrey a time-spanning love story about a divorced couple who remain attached in life and love in mysterious ways.
The Flathead Lake International Cinemafest is unspooling its fifth annual winter film festival during the weekend of January 20-22, 2017 at the Showboat Cinema on Main Street in Polson, Montana.
FLIC has been recognized as one of the top 15 Winter Film Festivals in the United States by the Audience Awards. David W. King, FLIC Co-Chair and producer said, “We’re excited to bring a diverse slate of 61 independent films to Polson and the Mission Valley for the fifth year in a row. Each year brings with it new cinematic treasures.”
FLIC 2017 will be screening full-length features, shorts, animated films, and documentaries. True to its name, FLIC is once again offering a broad selection of international films from countries that include Australia, Canada, Spain, Taiwan, Croatia, France, and the USA. In addition, there are 14 films produced in Montana, which is more than in any previous year.
FLIC kicks off on Friday, January 20th with an informal gathering from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Lake Bar on Highway 93 in downtown Polson. Film showings on two screens begin at 7 p.m. On Saturday, January 21st, there will be a break in film showings from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. for a second informal gathering at the Vine & Tap on Main Street. Complimentary hors d’oeuvres will be served each evening.
As in years past, the FLIC judges have enjoyed unearthing FLIC 2017’s gems. This year’s standout films include North of Known, a stunning feature documentary in which professional paragliders and adventurers Gavin McClurg and Dave Turner attempt a full, unsupported traverse of the Alaska Range by foot and paraglider. Another rich documentary, The Walk, produced by Polson’s Jim Ereaux, profiles the Coast to Coast walk across Northern England with images and poetry. Narrative stories are also bountiful this year, including Life Now, Life Then, another Montana feature in which an introvert recounts the summer of ’94, when he and his brother plotted revenge against their abusive father. The weekend is packed with a broad array of short films, too.
Saturday morning begins at 8:30 a.m. with a FLIC’s popular free family movie screening. This year’s film is Home, featuring an alien on the run from his own people who makes friends with a girl and tries to help her on her quest. Attendees are encouraged to arrive in their pajamas and enjoy a free breakfast sponsored by Polson’s Rotary Club, which also prepares the breakfast. This non-ticketed screening is free so seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.
As with previous years, many of FLIC’s screenings will include question and answer sessions with filmmakers. Stay tuned for more details as FLIC’s grand weekend in January gets closer!
The festival closes on Sunday, January 22nd with a “Best Of” awards show, which will be held at Showboat Cinema. Approximately 20 awards will be handed out in various categories.
All films, times and events are subject to change.
Film submissions are now being accepted for the Flathead Lake International Cinemafest (FLIC) scheduled for the weekend of Jan. 20-22, 2017 in Polson, Montana.
FLIC, now in its fifth year, was listed in the Top-15 Winter Film Festivals in the U.S. by The Audience Awards. Filmmakers have taken note and many travel to Polson to share their films in person. FLIC will continue to accept a broad slate of domestic and international films that entertain, inform and touch.
Films of all genres can be submitted through the FLIC website at www.flicpolson.com under the “Submit A Film” tab, Withoutabox website at https://www.withoutabox.com/login/12344 and https://filmfreeway.com/festival/FLIC.
All submitted films will be juried by a panel of judges from the Polson area. Films selected to be part of the festival will be showcased during the festival and are eligible to receive “Best Of” awards in several categories.
FLIC’s mission statement: Provide makers of all film genres a venue through which they enrich themselves and their audiences by engaging with film.
For more information please email email@example.com.