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Hoop Dreams

20th anniversary screening!
New digital restoration!
With exclusive video introduction and post-screening "20 Years Later" update by director Steve James, recorded at Northwest Film Forum!

Dec 19 - Dec 21

(Steve James, 1994, United States, DCP, 170 min)

Roger Ebert said it best: Hoop Dreams’ depiction of two high school ball players trying to make it in the prejudiced cauldron of Chicago in the ‘90s is “the great American documentary” (the Oscars snubbed it entirely). Steve James’ vision of the pipeline of poor, black basketball talent brings to mind the Windy City from Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle. In high school, black athletes are still cheap enough to treat like penny stocks, and we watch as two of them brave the ringer of all-white private schools, poverty and the constant risk of injury for a shot at a scholarship.

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My Last Year with the Nuns

Jan 09 - Jan 15, 2015

(Bret Fetzer, 2014, United States, 75 min)

The quintessential Capitol Hill coming-of-age story is an adaptation of local thespian Matt Smith’s popular one-man show. Through his animated recollections, Matt brings to life 1960s Capitol Hill, when Roy Street divided populations, nuns ruled with righteous anger, bullies trolled the schoolhouse and the newspaper shack represented the center of adolescent Matt’s social universe. 

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The Homestretch

Co-presented with the Committee to End Homelessness 
Introduction by Megan Gibbard, Homeless Youth & Young Adult Initiative

Jan 12, 2015

(Anne de Mare, Kristen Kelly, 2014, United States, 89 min)

Three homeless teens fight to stay in school, graduate and build a future. Each of these smart, ambitious teenagers—Kasey, Anthony and Roque—will surprise, inspire and challenge you to rethink stereotypes of homelessness, as their stories connect with larger policy issues of juvenile justice, immigration, foster care and LGBTQIA rights.

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Steamboat Bill, Jr.

World premiere live performance!
Festival opening night! 

Jan 22, 2015

(1928, 70 min)

Don’t miss the boat to the start of Children’s Film Festival Seattle 2015 — it’s one of the most beloved family films ever made! Steamboat Bill, Jr., Keaton’s most farcical and funny feature, tells the story of an accident-prone and bookish son, who must help his burly, redneck steamboat captain father save his business from a rival tycoon. In the process, Keaton performs mind-bending stunts and thrilling physical comedy.

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Pajama Party with Caspar Babypants

Live performance!

Jan 23, 2015

60 min

Calling all party animals — are you ready to dance and partake in some serious cupcake consumption? Wear your PJs and fluffy slippers, and bring your favorite stuffed animal along to see Caspar Babypants — the nationally beloved kindie-rock act of Chris Ballew, from The Presidents of the United States of America.

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Fantastic Journeys

January 24, Saturday, at 11am — special screening at Rainier Valley Cultural Center, 3515 S. Alaska St. Seattle. Tickets $5 kids, $7 adults available at door only, no pre-sales.

Jan 24 - Feb 07, 2015

80 min

Journeys take us to new places, whether in the outside world or within ourselves. On these animated flights of fancy, you’ll scale the Alps, push the sun and the moon back into alignment and jump into a whole ocean of lemonade.

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Snuggle Time

Jan 24, 2015

54 min

Sometimes we just want to snuggle up with our favorite blanket and stuffed animal for a warm nap. Cuddle with some cute little dogs, soft teddy bears, downy birds and chicks and the Shammies, who will sing you a lullaby.

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Kid Powered

Jan 24 - Jan 30, 2015

78 min

Challenges can bring out the best in us. The kids in these live action films face uphill battles that are long and steep, and they shine in the face of adversity. Meet a warrior child who must embrace her unique identity, a boy who becomes a superhero to his friend, a son who must stand up for his father, and a girl who faces loneliness and danger in order to get an education.

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Abracadabra

Includes live performance on January 24!

Jan 24 - Jan 30, 2015

65 min

The world is full of magic in the most surprising places. Discover a seashell that can shrink buildings and pick up boats, a ring that tells you the truth about anything you see, a comb that will make your hair grow like wild vines, and a toy car that finds its way home to its original owner.

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Clara and the Secret of the Bears

Seattle premiere!

Jan 24, 2015

90 min

Part ghost story, part story of friendship, and part nature film, this is the gripping tale of a girl named Clara who lives with her mother and her stepfather on a farm in the Swiss Alps.

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Labyrinthus

West Coast premiere! 

Jan 24, 2015

98 min

Frikke, a 14-year-old boy, comes across a computer game and discovers that it is being played with real kids, uploaded into the game’s labyrinth. In a race against time, Frikke tries to find the creator of this horrible game and help the kids inside it.

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The Finishers

West Coast premiere!

Jan 24, 2015

95 min

Julien is 17, has a great sense of humor, lots of charm, and is wheelchair-bound due to cerebral palsy. His parents love him, but the family is gradually falling apart under the strain of dealing with his disability. In a bid to both bond with his father and help him, Julien challenges him to participate (with him) in the Ironman race in Nice, a triathlon in which his father has previously competed.

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Be Different

Jan 24 - Jan 25, 2015

62 min

In what can seem like a cookie-cutter world, it’s great to take a look in the mirror and smile at the wonderfully unique, one-of-a-kind person that is you. These are films that celebrate that kids come in all shapes and sizes, and that it’s really cool to just be who you are. 

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Shivers and Scares

Jan 24, 2015

65 min

Settle down into your seat and we’ll tell you a spellbinding tale of what lurks in the dark corners of the house at night, or at the bottom of the deepest sea. Along the way you’ll also watch funny stories about the mishaps of the grim reaper and the power of imagination. But be prepared, or you might just JUMP with fright!

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On the Way to School

Northwest premiere!

Jan 24, 2015

77 min

They live in all four corners of the planet and share a thirst for knowledge. Almost instinctively, they know that their survival depends on knowledge and education. From the dangerous savannahs of Kenya to the winding trails of the Atlas mountains in Morocco, from the suffocating heat of Southern India to the vast, dizzying plateaus of Patagonia, these children are all united by the same quest, the same dream: to go to school.

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Party Animals

Jan 25 - Jan 30, 2015

62 min

A gloriously animated extravaganza of animal stories, featuring bugs, butterflies, bunnies, owls, kitties, zebra and birds of several different feathers! These stories of friendship and fun are especially recommended for our youngest festival-goers and their parents!

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See the World Change the World

Jan 25 - Jan 27, 2015

70 min

Grab your bag (of popcorn) and take off on a whirlwind trip to places most Seattle kids never get a chance to see. With these films, you’ll walk through a downpour in Indonesia, stop a rooster fight in Venezuela, climb a mountain in eastern Turkey, ride a bus in Iraq and experience a whole new country for the first time.

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Free Your Mind

Jan 25 - Feb 07, 2015

67 min

Have you ever felt a bolt out of the blue, a moment when your mind opens up and you see new possibilities? That’s what happens to the kids in these shorts. You’ll meet a girl who slips into a new dimension, a boy whose mind plays tricks on him, a child determined to trap a sunbeam and a boy who simply can’t sit still.

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Selkirk, the Real Robinson Crusoe

Jan 25, 2015

80 min

Selkirk, an unruly, selfish pirate, is the sailing master of an English galley sailing the South Seas in search of treasure. With his merry band of pirates (one of whom is a girl in disguise), life is one adventure after the next.

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Fabulous Fables

Jan 25 - Feb 07, 2015

67 min

This all-animated collection of folk tales, fairy tales and fables from Africa, Asia, Europe and North America will take you to places deep inside the heart of the human experience, and delve into mysteries beyond comprehension. If you like tales that stand tall, this is the program for you!

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Earth Sky and Sea

Jan 25 - Jan 30, 2015

76 min

These films make use of environmental themes in unexpected and provocative ways. You will meet a lightbulb who is jealous of the sun, a parrot who takes you on an excursion to the home of wild animals, a little octopus who moonlights as a lounge singer, bees who have parties and a brave boy who gathers firewood alone. Along the way, you’ll learn about the world’s oceans, our water and energy supply and threats to animals and insects.

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Super Shenanigans: Films by Youth

Jan 25, 2015

97 min

Join us for an extravaganza of movies (with intermission!) made by future filmmakers of the world. Includes films made at Northwest Film Forum and Coyote Central youth camps, in other Seattle youth filmmaking programs, New Jersey, East London, the United Arab Emirates and Croatia!

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The Outlaw League

U.S. premiere!

Jan 25, 2015

86 min

Nicolas, the son and grandson of fishermen, lives with his mom and sister in a village overlooking the sea. A terrible storm snatched his father a few years earlier, and Nicolas must not only deal with his loss, but also the slow disintegration of his grandfather. Summer vacation is the chance for Nicholas to resume his greatest pleasure: playing baseball with his friends. But a big obstacle greets the kids who assemble at the village baseball field. 

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Havana Curveball

Seattle premiere, with filmmaker in attendance! Co-presented with the Seattle Latino Film Festival

Jan 25 - Jan 26, 2015

60 min

This film is a documentary about Mica, a young teen. He’s enthusiastic. Idealistic. Dreaming baseball. At 13, he is studying for his Bar Mitzvah, the Jewish coming-of-age rite. Imagining himself a savior of sorts, he launches a grand plan to send baseballs to Cuba, a country with a mysterious pull.

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Shana: The Wolf's Music

Meet the star, Sunshine O’Donovan and other lead members of the cast at the Jan. 31 screening! This screening will also include a pre-show performance by Red Eagle Soaring.

Seattle premiere!

Co-presented with Longhouse Media!

Jan 28 - Jan 31, 2015

96 min

Shana is a Canadian First Nations girl who is a gifted violinist. But she has problems no young person should have to face: her mother has died, and her father is struggling with his own demons. Only Shana’s new teacher seems to care about her, and at first, Shana pushes her away. But she meets another, more mystical being to accompany her on her journey: a wild wolf who helps her reconnect with her ancestors, make peace with her circumstances, and use her talents to express her passions.

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Wave of Wonder

Jan 29 - Jan 31, 2015

65 min

This collection of films is meant to wash over you in a wave of exquisite, painterly animation. Dive down deep into stories that will take you to strange planets, the frozen tundra, dense forests and inside the workings of a marionette theater. These films are meant to remind you that life is a journey, that sometimes hard choices have to be made and that dreams really can come true.

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Finding My Way

Jan 30 - Feb 01, 2015

63 min

These live action films tell the stories of kids who are learning how to spread their wings. Along the way, they have adventures, test their courage and make decisions they have to stick with. Join them, and you’ll wander a city’s unfamiliar streets, leap past your birthday, turn a hospital room into luxurious digs and even help the moon get back to the sky.

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High Tech Hijinks

Jan 30 - Jan 31, 2015

63 min

An animated roundup for kids who love gadgets, gizmos, robots and other marvelous inventions. Dive inside a computer’s brain, roam a junkyard looking for robot parts, soar above a city made of circuit boards and find out what your phone and tablet are up to after you fall asleep!

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Indigenous Experience

Co-presented with Longhouse Media!

Jan 30 - Jan 31, 2015

67 min

Explore the joys and challenges of Native youth in this collection of award-winning documentaries and animated films. Soar with an eagle boy in Norway, meet a deaf boy who listens to his inner voice, band together with a pack of dogs, dance a forest back to life and outwit the wily Amautalik!

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Pancake Breakfast and Short Film Smorgasbord

Includes breakfast, free all-day parking and a one-hour film program! 

Jan 31, 2015

Our all-you-can-eat breakfast of fluffy homemade pancakes and sizzling bacon is fun for the whole family!  And of course we’ll have gallons of hot coffee on hand for the grown-ups.  After breakfast, come to Northwest Film Forum for a special screening of Fantastic Journeys, a magical program of new animated and live action shorts from 8 countries. 

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Sally's Way

World premiere, with filmmakers in attendance!

Jan 31, 2015

87 min

Sally, a 12-year-old girl orphaned by HIV/AIDS, needs to use her ingenuity to help her ailing grandmother, who is the only family she has left. Set in the lush Caribbean, the film has a universal message of how to thrive despite the odds, and face the challenges of displacement and loss with positivity and creativity.

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Bubble Bubble Meows and the Meteor Stomachache

Filmmaker and voice talent for three main roles will be in attendance!

Free stickers for every audience members, with drawings for other great prizes!

Jan 30 - Jan 31, 2015

83:30 min

Come see the epic adventures of a poorly drawn animated cat, Bubble Bubble Meows, as he goes on a quest to cure his friend, a string bean who has a bellyache caused by meteor consumption. Along the way, BBM and Stringbean encounter Paul, a hyper-caffeinated feline, a lollipop-licking snow pea, three robots who resemble marshmallows, and a pile of cottage cheese named Mr. Knowitall.

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Lola on the Pea

West Coast premiere, with filmmaker in attendance!

Jan 31, 2015

90 min

Nine-year-old Lola lives on a charming old houseboat with her mother. But life isn’t exactly going swimmingly for her. She misses her long-gone dad, and doesn’t much care for her mom’s new boyfriend. She also has to contend with schoolmates who tease her and chase her home from school. But one day, she makes a friend—a quiet new boy in town, named Rebin. 

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Pim & Pom: The Big Adventure

West Coast premiere!

Feb 01, 2015

70 min

Two cats, Pim and Pom, are best friends who live together with “The Lady.” But one day, the lady’s nieces come to visit, and they take the cats to the park for a picnic. However, what they really want to do is keep Pim and Pom for themselves, and they’ve come up with a plan to “cat-nap” them!

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Family Matters

Jan 24 - Feb 07, 2015

70 min

When it comes to this program, there’s no place like home! Take a trip around the world to see films that show how family life is the same, and different, in seven different countries. In the end, it’s love that makes the world go round.

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Closing Ceremony

Feb 07, 2015

75 min

We close out the 2015 festival by screening films made during the past week in our workshops, announcing the winners of our Children’s Jury Prizes and Seattle Children’s Hospital Juries, and celebrating with a surprise selection of outstanding short films made by international filmmakers.

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