The 2012 Teaneck International Film Festival
The films below were screened during the 2012 film festival.
For the latest film festival go to 2016 Films.
All Together
(Et si on vivait tous ensemble? -France-feature-96 minutes-New Jersey premiere)
Directed by Stéphane Robelin
Sponsored by Five Star Premier Residences of Teaneck
Panel discussion to follow.
Official Site - IMDb - Trailer
Five aging friends decide to move in together in this crowd-pleasing comedy, starring Jane Fonda (in her first French-language film since Godard's 1972 Tout Va Bien), Geraldine Chaplin, and Claude Rich. Comfortably retired, they hire a handsome graduate student as a live-in caretaker and rediscover the joys of "communal" living -- but when old secrets and long-simmering jealousies emerge, discord among the group begins to grow.
Bearden Plays Bearden
(feature-documentary – 60 minutes)
Directed by Nelson Breen
Panel discussion to follow with director Nelson Breen, photographer Frank Stewart and assistant director/co-writer Billie Allen Henderson
Sponsored by the Romare Bearden Foundation
This Emmy Award-winning PBS documentary, narrated by James Earl Jones, is the culmination of a unique three year collaboration between Romare Bearden, the greatest African-American artist of his generation, and the filmmaker. Rarely has a film delved so deeply into the soul of an artist, discovering not only what inspired his work, but what drove him to be an artist in the first place. A special director's cut will premiere at TIFF with never-before-seen footage featuring Alvin Ailey, James Baldwin and Ntozake Shange.
Brother Outsider: The Life of Bayard Rustin
(feature-documentary-83 minutes)
Directed by Nancy Kates and Bennett Singer
Screening is free to children 18 and under thanks to California Newsreel. Also sponsored by Garden State Equality.
Panel discussion to follow with civil rights historian and activist Theodora Lacey and other special guests.

Official Site - IMDb - Trailer
Meet Bayard Rustin, a visionary strategist and activist who has been called "the unknown hero" of the civil rights movement. This powerful documentary chronicles the life of openly gay civil rights activist Bayard Rustin, who, among many contributions to the cause, is best known for organizing the 1963 March on Washington, D.C., involving hundreds of thousands of people.
Special 100th Anniversary Screening to Celebrate the Birth of Rustin.
(Canada-feature-93 minutes-parental discretion advised)
Directed by Thom Fitzgerald
Sponsored by Garden State Equality.
Panel discussion to follow with a representative of Garden State Equality.

Official Site - IMDb
Two Oscar®-winning actresses Olympia Dukakis (Moonstruck) and Brenda Fricker (My Left Foot) star as Stella and Dot, an aging couple who escape a nursing home and embark on a Thelma & Louise-style road trip from Maine to Nova Scotia to be legally married. Dukakis gives a fearless performance as a crotchety rebel with a cause, battling the narrow minded and cursing like a sailor. By turns, comic, poignant and profane, Cloudburst celebrates the power of love against adversity.
The Contradictions of Fair Hope
(feature – documentary –67 minutes)
Directed by S. Epatha Merkerson and Rockell Metcalf
Panel discussion to follow with the directors and producer
Official Site - Trailer
Narrated by Whoopi Goldberg, the documentary examines a little known aspect of American history, the formation by freed slaves of "benevolent societies" to take care of the sick and needy and bury the dead. The history of The Fair Hope Benevolent Society in Uniontown, Alabama, is traced from its beginnings in 1888 to the present, when an annual meeting, now dubbed the "Foot Wash," has gone from being a religious-oriented family gathering to a celebration of worldly pleasures by more than 100,000 people. The moral conflict in this community and the effort to save the Society from the dubious pleasures and practices of the 21st century make for a touching and gripping tale.
(short-dramatic comedy-34 minutes)
Directed by Gregory Principato
Panel discussion to follow with director, cast members, and Teaneck native Anthony Laciura of HBO's Boardwalk Empire
A New Jersey short with an all star cast including Brenda Vaccaro, Vincent D'Onofrio and Teaneck's native son Anthony Laciura tells the dark comedic story of Gus, an Italian chef, whose life is turned upside down after a mishap during a Sunday dinner when Jack, his father in law chokes to death on an osso bucco bone.
Crime After Crime
(feature-documentary-93 minutes)
Directed by Yoav Potash
Panel discussion to follow with State Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg, Joshua Safran, Natasha Wilson (daughter of Debbie Peagler) and Micaela Mangott
Sponsored by Wise Older Women (WOW)
Official Site - IMDb - Trailer
The dramatic story of the legal battle to free Debbie Peagler, a woman imprisoned for over a quarter century due to her connection to the murder of the man who abused her. Senator Loretta Weinberg to discuss how this story has inspired legislation on a state and national level.
Damaged Goods
(short-comedy- 28 minutes)
Directed by Michael Miceli
Panel discussion to follow with director Michael Miceli and producer Michael Valentino teachers in the Teaneck Public Schools
Official Site - IMDb
This funny, poignant, neurotic, relationship comedic short follows a jilted party entertainer's attempt to re-enter the dating scene after suffering a bad breakup and a rare sexual injury.
Dressing America: Tales from the Garment Center
(feature-documentary-57 minutes)
Directed by Steven Fischler & Joel Sucher
Panel discussion to follow with director and Teaneck native Steven Fischler
IMDb - Trailer
A fascinating documentary exploring the post-World War II heyday of the garment district in Manhattan. Mavens of the "shmatte" business pay tribute to the Jewish immigrant roots of the garment industry, when Sam, You Made the Pants Too Long was a top musical hit and American designers challenged the hegemony of Paris fashion.
400 Miles to Freedom
(USA/Israel-feature-documentary-60 minutes)
Directed by Avishai Yeganyahu Mekonen and Shari Rothfarb Mekonen, Hebrew and Amharic with English subtitles
Panel discussion to follow with directors and producer - Teaneck native Steven Fischler
Official Site - IMDb - Trailer
In 1984, the Beta Israel—a secluded 2,500-year-old community of observant Jews in the northern Ethiopian mountains—began a secret and dangerous journey of escape. Co-director Avishai Mekonen, then 10 years old, was among them. In this film, he breaks his 20-year silence about the kidnapping he endured as a child in Sudan during his community's exodus. This powerful documentary explores issues of immigration and racial diversity in Judaism and Israel.
Free Men
(France-feature-99 minutes-New Jersey premiere)
Directed by Ismaël Ferroukhi, French with English subtitles
IMDb - Trailer
Set in Paris during WWII, an Algerian immigrant is inspired to join the resistance by his unexpected friendship with a Jewish man. A historic thriller illustrating how Jews and Muslims worked together for freedom during WWII.
Hitler's Children
(Germany-feature-documentary-80 minutes-Tri-state premiere)
Directed by Chanoch Ze'evi, German, English and Hebrew with English subtitles
Panel discussion to follow.
Official Site - IMDb - Trailer
Adolf Hitler did not have children, but what about the families of Goering, Himmler and Frank, to name a few? What is it like for the descendants of these top Nazi officials to deal with the terrifying legacy of their notorious families? Hitler's Children introduces us to sons, daughters, grandchildren, nieces and nephews of these infamous men. They discuss how they have coped with the fact that their last name alone immediately raises images of murder and genocide; each baring, for the first time, the scars that their legacy has left them.
Kid Flix Mix 2012
(Live action animated short films-60 minutes)
The Best of the New York International Children's Film Festival
Hosted by Bob McGrath of Sesame Street
For Children 4-8
Thanks to a grant from the Puffin Foundation, children will be admitted free when accompanied by an adult.

Once again, TIFF presents the acclaimed New York International Children's Film Festival assortment of its best animated and live action films from around the world, for children from 4-8. Bob McGrath, of Teaneck and Sesame Street, will introduce the program, which features musical and narrative works from the USA, United Kingdom, Sweden, Japan, Italy, Portugal, and Canada. The collection is guaranteed to delight our youngest filmgoers.
  • B/W Races Italy - Animtion, Jacopo Martinoni, 2010, 2.5 min
  • Balloon Moon Portugal - Animation, Jose Miguel Ribeiro, 2010, 5 min
  • Behind - Canada - Animation, Ga Young Back, 2011, 3 min
  • Diversity - USA - Animation, Anthony Dusko, 2010, 1 min
  • Ernesto - UK - Animation, Corinne Ladeinde, 2011, 7 min
  • The Gruffalo's Child - UK - Animation, Johannes Weiland/Uwe Heidschotter, 2011, 26 min
  • Gulp - UK - Animation, Sumo Science, 2011, 2 min
  • Keenan at Sea - USA - Animation, David Cowles/Jeremy Galante, 2010, 2 min
  • Metro - USA - Animation, Jake Wyatt, 2011, 5 min
  • Twist & Shout - Japan - Animation, Yosuke Kihara, 2010, 3 min
  • Who is Not Sleeping? - Sweden - Animation, Jessica Lauren, 2010, 4 min
Local Tourists
(short-dramatic comedy-14 minutes)
Directed by Doug Lenox
Panel discussion to follow with director
Recipient of award for Best Short at the 2012 Lighthouse International Film Festival, Local Tourists, is an offbeat quirky comedic beach short shot in Wildwood, New Jersey.
Mariachi High
(feature-documentary-54 minutes-New Jersey premiere)
Directed by Ilana Trachtman & Kim Connell, English subtitles provided during Spanish dialogue
Panel discussion to follow with executive producer Kelly Sheehan and co-producer Carol DeVoe.
IMDb - Trailer
In a part of America that rarely makes headlines, there is a small town with a group of teenagers who will captivate your ears and warm your heart. "Mariachi High" presents a year in the life of the champion mariachi ensemble at Zapata High School on the Rio Grande River in South Texas. As they compete and perform with musical virtuosity, these teens and the music they make will inspire, surprise, and bring you to your feet. High school never sounded so good.
Media That Matters™ Short Film Festival
(juried documentary shorts - 90 minutes)
Panel discussion to follow.
Official Site
For the third consecutive year TIFF partner's with Arts Engine Twelfth Annual Media That Matters Short Film Festival. The Media That Matters Film Festival is the premiere showcase for short films on the most important topics of the day. Local and global, online and in communities around the world, Media That Matters engages diverse audiences and inspires them to take action. What all the juried award winning short films have in common in this series is that they spark debate and action in 12 minutes or less.
  • AISHA'S SONG - Nigeria & UK (9:18)
  • HIV IS NOT A CRIME - USA (8:12)
  • THE STORY OF CHOLERA - Israel & USA (4:29)
  • GERTHY'S ROOTS - Haiti & USA (10:34)
  • Stories of TRUST: Calling for Climate Recovery - USA (6:49)
(Germany – silent feature- the 1927 German masterpiece fully restored with live baby grand piano accompaniment- 140 minutes)
Directed by Fritz Lang; silent film with subtitles
Film to be performed with live piano accompaniment combining elements of jazz, pop, classical, and avant-garde music from world renowned German composer Markus Horn
Sponsored by: The Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany, New York
Official Site - IMDb - Trailer
In a futuristic city sharply divided between the working class and the city planners, the son of the city's mastermind falls in love with a working class prophet who predicts the coming of a savior to mediate their differences. The New York Times hails Metropolis as "A masterpiece of visionary silent cinema ... one of the strangest, most fascinating films ever made, a futuristic nightmare that is both sublime in its grandeur and remarkably intimate in its emotions."
Moments of Happiness (Khushiyann)
(India-feature - Bollywood Musical -131 minutes)
Directed by Tirlok Malik, Punjabi with English subtitles
Panel discussion to follow with director and producers
Sponsored by NPZ Law Group, Global Immigration Attorneys
IMDb - Trailer
Bollywood comes to Teaneck in this charming romantic drama with large Bollywood musical interludes. A successful Indian architect living in New York City is haunted by lingering feelings that he must return to his small village in Punjab to make peace with his aging father. A feel good family movie for all ages.
(Korea-feature-139 minutes)
Directed by Lee Chang-Dong, Korean with English subtitles
IMDb - Trailer
Hailed as the greatest actress in Korea, Yun Jung-hee, give an achingly exquisite portrait of a woman's brave fight against Alzheimer's, and against her guilt over a relative's brutal crime. Poetry is about the power to bear witness to both sublime beauty and the violent truths that lie hidden in the hearts of men.

A Powerful Noise
(feature-documentary – 80 minutes)
Directed by Tom Cappello, Bambara, French, Vietnamese, and Bosnian with English subtitles
Panel discussion to follow
Sponsored by Fair Trade Teaneck
IMDb - Trailer
A documentary film about women changing the world. This moving documentary takes you inside the lives of three women – a girls' education crusader from Mali, an HIV-positive widow from Vietnam, and a peacemaking survivor of the war in Bosnia – who each overcome seemingly insurmountable odds to bring lasting solutions to their communities.
(Prinsessa - Finland - feature-104 minutes- NJ premiere)
Directed by Arto Halonen, Finnish with English subtitles
IMDb - Trailer
Based on real-life events, tells the moving story of cabaret dancer Anna Lappalainen. Lappalainen, claiming to be "Princess", spent 50 years of her life as a patient at Kellokoski Psychiatric Hospital, where she healed and brought joy to those around her through her lovable personality.
Raid of the Rainbow Lounge
(feature-documentary-103 minutes- Tri-state premiere)
Directed by Robert Camina
Sponsored by Garden State Equality.
Panel discussion to follow with a representative of Garden State Equality.
Official Site - IMDb - Trailer
Narrated by Meredith Baxter, this gripping documentary recounts the widely publicized and controversial 2009 police raid of a Fort Worth, Texas gay bar that resulted in multiple arrests and serious injuries. This film documents the story of eye witnesses, activists and politicians who helped affect change for the LGBT citizens of Fort Worth.
Sing Your Song: Harry Belafonte
(feature-documentary-104 minutes)
Directed by Susanne Rostock
Centerpiece Film
Panel discussion to follow with Harry Belafonte's daughter, Gina Belafonte and other special guests.
Sponsored by the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., the Bergen County Chapter of The Links, Inc., Bergen/Passaic Chapter, and Teaneck/Englewood Vicinity Club.
Told with a remarkable sense of intimacy, visual style and musical panache, this inspiring biographical documentary surveys the life and times of singer/actor/activist Harry Belafonte. From his rise to fame as a singer and his experiences touring a segregated country to his provocative crossover into Hollywood, Belafonte's groundbreaking career personifies the American civil rights movement. Director Susanne Rostock reveals Belafonte as a tenacious hands-on activist who worked intimately with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., mobilized celebrities for social justice, participated in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa and took action to counter gang violence, prisons, and the incarceration of youth. Because of his beliefs, Belafonte drew unwarranted invasions by the FBI into both his personal life and career, which led to years of struggle. But an indomitable sense of optimism motivates his path even today as he continues to ask, at 84, "What do we do now?" His example may very well inspire you to action.
The Well Digger's Daughter
(France-feature-105 minutes-New Jersey premiere)
Directed by Daniel Auteuil, French with English subtitles
Official Site - IMDb - Trailer
Famed French actor Daniel Auteuil stars in and directs his first work, a remake of Marcel Pagnol's 1940s classic film. Auteuil stars as the eponymous well-digger Pascale, a widower living with his six daughters in the Provence countryside at the start of World War I. His eldest, Patricia, has returned home from Paris to help raise her sisters, and Pascale dreams of marrying her off to his loyal assistant Felipe. But when she's impregnated by a wealthy young pilot who promptly abandons her for the frontlines, Pascale is left to contend with the consequences. An exquisitely crafted, sun-drenched melodrama, set to a score by Academy Award-nominee Alexandre Desplat (The King's Speech), the film captures all the warmth and humanist spirit of Pagnol's original work