POLSON — The Flathead Lake International Cinemafest (FLIC) celebrates its 11th winter film festival the weekend of February 24-26, 2023 at the Showboat Stadium 6, 416 Main Street, Polson, Montana. Encore screenings then run from 7pm, Sunday, February 26th, through Thursday, March 2nd.
FLIC 2023 will present a diverse selection of domestic and international narrative and documentary films, shorts, animation, and student films. This edition features entries from fifteen countries as well as eleven homegrown Montana films.
About two-dozen filmmakers from across the country will trek to Polson to participate in the festival in person. In addition, Cajun musician Jourdan Thibodeaux will travel from Louisiana in conjunction with the documentary feature film Roots of Fire, which screens Saturday at 6pm. (See below for information about Thibodeaux’s special live performance.)
In addition to screenings, FLIC 2023 will feature special events:
Friday, February 24 at 4:30pm, FLIC 2023 kicks off with “Taste of Polson” in the Showboat Stadium 6 lobby. Taste of Polson will feature food and dessert samplings from regional eateries including The Shoe, The Lodge & Resort at Lake Mary Ronan, Mackenzie River Pizza Company, Sweet Cakes by Melissa, The Cove Deli & Pizza, and Finley Point Grill. (Taste of Polson is limited to FLIC ticket and All Access Pass holders.)
Saturday, February 25th at 9:30am, the traditional free FLIC Kids’ Breakfast and Screening, sponsored by Polson Rotary Club. This year’s children’s film is The Bad Guys, an action comedy from DreamWorks Animation, which received a Rotten Tomatoes critics’ score of 89% and an audience score of 93%.
Saturday, 2:30pm features a special Somewhere in Montana filmmaker presentation. Somewhere in Montana Director Brandon Smith and producer Eden Bryant will present a short excerpt from their unfinished feature film, which was shot entirely in the Polson area last summer. Following the film clip, the filmmakers will share their respective experiences during the course of making the film.
Saturday, 4:30pm, a FLIC 2023 social mixer at The Durham (49494 US Highway 93, Polson). Complimentary hors d’oeuvres will be served and drinks will be available for purchase.
Saturday at 9:30pm, Cajun musician Jourdan Thibodeaux will perform at The Durham, which is hosting this informal FLIC mixer. Drinks will be available for purchase.
Sunday, February 26th, 9:30am, Good Coffee Roasting Company (214 Main Street, Polson) plays warm and cozy host to a light breakfast mixer for filmmakers and FLIC attendees. A wide variety of drinks and fresh baked goods will be available for purchase.
Sunday, 5:30pm, FLIC 2023 Awards Show, followed by a dessert reception. Filmmaker nominees will receive awards and the Audience Choice and Impact Awards will be presented. Then, at 7pm, encore screenings begin.
FLIC Director David W. King shares, “Over its decade of celebrating independent film in this region, FLIC has gradually earned a solid reputation as a special film festival that’s worth entering and attending. Filmmakers tell us that they entered the festival based on rave reviews from their colleagues. It’s wonderful to hear from people we’ve never met that FLIC has gained that level of credibility.”
In an online FilmFreeway review, one of last year’s attending filmmakers shared,
“The FLIC festival is an incredibly special experience. We can’t say enough about how welcoming the people of Polson are to filmmakers. It was a true community experience. David and Jessica are stellar festival organizers and passionate about bringing people together for well-curated films. After 25 plus festivals over 18 months, FLIC stands out as our best overall experience. We greatly appreciate the festival, the Kings and community of Polson.” Kathy Kuras, Producer/Director
While FLIC 2023 will feature a dozen live filmmaker question & answer sessions following screening blocks, there will also be pre-recorded Zoom-based Q&A videos shared with the FLIC audience. One such conversation features veteran U.K. actress/director Sarah-Jane Potts, who received Best Actress and Best Director nominations for her brilliant directing and acting turns in The Magician, which is also nominated for Best Picture – Short, Best Original Score and Best Actor. In the video, Potts shares her inspiration for creating The Magician was sparked by the COVID lockdown. The film marks Potts’ first directing experience, and her enthusiasm about the overall creative process of making her film is inspiring.
For more information about FLIC 2023, attending filmmakers, special events, and this year’s films visit FLICPolson.com, where the FLIC program is available to view and download.
All films, times and events are subject to change.