experiences

8 Tips for Making the Most of Filmfest DC (And Why You Shouldn’t Miss It)

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Whether you’re a DC native or just in town on a visit, DC’s annual international filmfest is not be missed.  And even though it started tonight, there’s still time to get in on the fun April 16-26.
Dan Alban a fellow wine enthusiast, movie critic, and Filmfest DC veteran of more than a decade kindly shared his advice with me for how to make the most of it:
  1. Filmfest DC is a truly international film festival, so see movies from countries you’re interested in – either places you’ve been, places you want to visit, or cultures you find fascinating.  You can use the Filmfest DC website to sort films by country of origin.
  2. Buy tickets at least one day in advance to make sure the film you want to see isn’t sold out.  You need to buy at least a day in advance because day-of sales are only made at the box office for your theater (and if the show is sold out, you may have traveled there for no reason).  See #8 below for how to combine advance purchases to save yourself some money.
  3. See the Shorts (Short Cuts 1 & 2).  A great way to see a lot of films from a lot of different countries is to see the short films. Some of the most inventive, quirky and heart-tugging films I see each year are shorts. The other great thing about short films is that any movies you don’t like will at least be over quick.
  4. See some award nominees, especially the nominees for the Circle Award.  The Circle Award is a juried film competition, and the films selected are often of quite high quality: http://www.filmfestdc.org/awards.cfm
  5. Like funny movies?  Suspense movies?  Movies about music, especially jazz?  Movies about social justice issues? Check out the Highlights section of the website for films likely to appeal to you: http://www.filmfestdc.org/highlights.cfm
  6. When all else fails, look films up on IMDb or RottenTomatoes to see how they’ve been rated/reviewed.  (Because the films are often known by their foreign language title, it is sometimes easier to search by the name of the director)
  7. Don’t be afraid to roll the dice on something that looks weird or interesting, even if it has few/no reviews. The worst that can happen is that you decide a film just isn’t worth your time and you slip out after 20-30 minutes.
  8. Take advantage of the various discounts for buying ten tickets at once (that’s just five films with a partner) or four weeknight tickets (that’s just two films with a partner) http://www.filmfestdc.org/tickets.cfm

Full Disclosure: I may receive affiliate credit from links in this post or on this site which will help fund my travels. Thank you for your support!

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Living for the little (and big things) that make life so fun, especially mistake deals and crazy last minute weekend mileage runs across the world. www.twitter.com/klatravel

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