It keeps getting bigger and bigger...

...and that's great news for Philly film fans, who will be able to feast on 139 films from 40 countries around the world over 11 days, starting today, at the eighth annual Philadelphia Festival of World Cinema, presented by International House.

This year's festival features a special "Spotlight on Loach" - a tribute to renowned British filmmaker Ken Loach, who is known for his revolutionary use of documentary techniques in his feature films about working-class Britain. While the Loach retrospective focuses mainly on his earlier and less-widely-shown works, such as "Cathy Come Home" (1966), it also includes his most recent and most commercially successful film, "My Name Is Joe" (1998, photo).

Other festival highlights include:

  • The annual "Fest Indies" regional film festival, this year curated for the first time by a panel of cinema experts;

  • "2000 Seen By...," featuring seven directors from seven countries, all speculating on what will happen come the millennium, a collection commissioned by French TV.

The winner of this year's "Set in Philadelphia" screenwriting competition will be announced on opening night.

New media seminars, a special midnight screening series, and panel discussions with young screenwriters and film financiers, plus special collaborations with other area cultural institutions (see "Big fun for kids of all ages"), round out this year's biggest-ever festival.


  • PHILADELPHIA FESTIVAL OF WORLD CINEMA: Thursday, April 29 through Sunday, May 9, at venues throughout Center City and University City, including International House, 3701 Chestnut St. Tickets for individual screenings $7 in advance, $7.50 day of show; "Cinepass" for admission to all screenings (except for Opening Night, $25, and Closing Night, $20) $125. Other special packages available; for tickets, call Upstages at 215-569-9700 or 609-342-6535. Festival info: tune in WXPN-FM (88.5), visit the festival Web site or call 800-WOW-PFWC.

Front page for this issue | Pennsylvania Current home page

Originally published on April 29, 1999