My wife and I first heard of Lion when we attended last fall’s Heartland Film Festival preview night here in Indianapolis. I’m sorry we missed its festival screening, but now that it’s been nominated for Best Picture, once again the film and I crossed paths as part of my annual Oscar quest.
Since 1992 Indianapolis has held its own celebration of cinema with the Heartland Film Festival, a ten-day, multi-theater marathon every October of documentaries, shorts, narrative features, and animated works made across multiple continents from myriad points of the human experience, usually with an emphasis on uplift and positivity. Several have aired previously at other festivals; at least one will be its their American theatrical debuts; I think there may even be a world premiere, but my notes are sketchy on that point. For the 25th annual event, dozens of volunteers screened 2,535 submissions from dozens of countries and narrowed them down to 135 entrants, several of which will be vying for official festival prizes.
Last month my wife and I had our second annual date night attending Heartland’s Preview Night at the Athenaeum Theatre downtown, at which the staff announced their official selections and competition finalists, and released this year’s schedule in a very nice, silver booklet for their milestone anniversary. For said occasion, the Festival will also include encore presentations of entrants from previous years such as Rudy and Lars and the Real Girl.
Among the numerous films coming to Indianapolis in October, the following is a partial list of what jumped out at one or both of us, some of whose stars will be in town appearing at their screenings. If we can make time to see one of these during one of our busiest months of the year, the results will be reported here on MCC. Trailers are enclosed where existent.