The Stony Brook Film Festival will bring more than a dozen feature films from across the world — and one from very close to home — to the Staller Center for its 28th edition, July 20-29.
The lineup will be available Wednesday online at stonybrookfilmfestival.com. Tickets and passes are on sale now.
Though known mostly for its foreign titles, the festival includes a locally made documentary, “Radioactive: The Women of Three Mile Island,” from Heidi Hutner, a professor in Stony Brook University’s English Department. Her film, which revisits the 1979 partial meltdown of a nuclear power plant through the eyes of four homemakers and two lawyers, won the Audience Award for Best Feature Documentary at Dances with Films, a long-running showcase for independent titles.
Bookending the Stony Brook Film Festival are two European dramas about characters working in the performing arts. The opening night title, “Sea of Time,” from the Netherlands, focuses on a theater director who uses a long-ago relationship as material for his final production. The closing night feature, “Divertimento,” from France, dramatizes the true story of Zahia Ziouani, a French teenager of Algerian descent who aspires to be a symphony conductor.
The lineup also includes several comedies, including “I Like Movies,” a Canadian production about a video-store clerk who hopes to attend New York University’s prestigious film school; “Grandpa Goes South,” from Slovenia, about an aging jazz musician who pulls a friend from the hospital for a road trip; and “Elik & Jimmy,” in which two Israeli soldiers form a friendship that develops into something trickier.
As always, single tickets and all-admission passes are available, but organizers are trying out a new option this year: the Flex Pass, which provides access to any five days of festival-going for $75. Roughly 120 of the new passes have been sold so far, mostly to first-time customers or those who traditionally have purchased only single tickets, according to festival founder Alan Inkles. It’s a hopeful sign, he said, that audiences are wading back into cinemas after three years of COVID-19.
“We have great films as always,” Inkles said. “But more than anything, the festival is, I hope, an entrance way back to the movie theater.”