Archive for the ‘Featured’ Category

Climate Change Student Action Kit

The Climate Campaign Partnership is an integrated STEAM program sponsored by MFF and partnered with the Montclair Cooperative School and National Geographic’s Years of Living Dangerously that focuses on the critical scientific, political, economic and social issues of climate change through powerful and provocative films, art, conversation, and social action. Click here to view the […]

Please Vote for MFF

Voting in the 2017 People’s Choice Awards is currently underway! Please show your support for MFF

2018 EFC Registration Now Open

Registration is now open! Submissions will be accepted through March 4th, 2018. General Rules and Guidelines Films must be uploaded or postmarked by March 4, 2018 Winners will be announced on March 26, 2018. Awards ceremony and screening will be held during the Montclair Film Festival April 26-May 6th. Student’s films can be entered into […]

Annual Report (2015-2016)

Click to Open Annual Report We are pleased to share the Montclair Film Festival’s first-ever Annual Report, which captures our history, extraordinary growth, and bright vision for the future. Thanks to your support, the Montclair Film Festival has become a leader in presenting screenings, conversations, special events, workshops, and classes that promote a greater understanding, awareness, […]

Submissions Open for 2017 Festival

Submissions for the 2017 Festival are now open! Celebrating our sixth year, the Montclair Film Festival has established itself as New Jersey’s leading film non-profit, with hundreds of screenings, events, education programs, and community partnerships providing a unique opportunity for our diverse audience to connect with filmmakers working in all different genres and forms. In addition, our […]

BOOGER RED: Truth and Fiction

Director Berndt Mader gives insight about his intriguing narrative/doc hybrid and the fascinating creative process behind it.

MFF16 Opening Night!

The Montclair Film Festival kicked off its fifth anniversary on Friday, April 29 with the remarkable documentary film LIFE, ANIMATED. Directed by Academy Award winner Roger Ross Williams and based on the best-selling book, Life Animated: a story of Sidekicks, Heroes and Autism by Ron Suskind, the film tells the story of Suskind’s son Owen, an autistic child […]

Jon & Tracey Stewart at MFF16

We are delighted to announce special guests added to Saturday’s screening of Hegedus & Pennebaker’s UNLOCKING THE CAGE.

Grab Your #MFF16 Pin

After the movie, spend the day in Montclair and take advantage of great local discounts & deals just for wearing your pin!

THE PEARL: Courage To Be

Director Jessica Dimmock talks about her thought-provoking film exploring transgender identity.

SILICON COWBOYS: Tech Revolution

Jason Cohen’s SILICON COWBOYS tells one of the great David vs. Goliath stories of the digital age—the birth of Compaq Computer, a small, upstart company from Houston, Texas bound and determined to revolutionize personal computing. Standing in their way? IBM, one of America’s biggest and most valuable corporations, whose dominance of the computing sector was […]

Meet the #MFF16 Jury!

Meet the distinguished industry professionals on the juries for our Documentary, Narrative, Future/Now and New Jersey competitions.

MFF16: Foreign Language Films

Montclair Film Festival 2016 is pleased to present this exciting selection of international gems from all over the world. WHEN TWO WORLDS COLLIDE In 2007, then-Peruvian present Alan Garcia invited foreign companies to do business with the country by partnering on the extraction of natural resources. But when many of those resources were discovered on protected land […]

NEWTOWN: Pain and Perseverance

Filmed over the course of nearly three years, Kim Snyder’s NEWTOWN is the story of the aftermath of the deadliest mass shooting of schoolchildren in American history. The film details the experience of parents, children, and educators whose community was forever transformed and fractured, driving them toward an unforeseen sense of purpose. The resilience of […]

THE ARBALEST: Inventive Comedy

When an unexpected tragedy befalls an amateur game inventor, his wife and a rival make a pact to share in the spoils of his invention. But when that invention becomes an international sensation, the pair chart different courses in their own lives, until desire brings them together again for one final game. Adam Pinney’s THE […]

SHARON JONES! + Filmmaker Party

MFF16 Closing Night: Award Ceremony, the latest from Oscar® winner Barbara Kopple, and the Filmmaker Party!

JOE’S VIOLIN: The Power of Music

In her beautifully crafted short documentary JOE’S VIOLIN, Kahane Cooperman tells the story of Joseph Feingold, a 91-year-old Polish Holocaust survivor who donates his violin of 70 years to a local instrument drive. When the violin lands in the hands of a 12-year-old schoolgirl from the nation’s poorest congressional district, their lives intersect, changing both […]

MFF16: LGBTQ Themes

Montclair Film Festival 2016 is pleased to present a diverse listing of LGBTQ-themed screenings. HOLY HELL In 1985, filmmaker Will Allen joined The Buddha Field, a spiritual group in California that promised love, acceptance, and enlightenment to its members. As the group’s official documentarian, Allen recorded over 20 years worth of footage, including never-before-seen meditations […]

SLASH: Modern Teen Angst

In this surprising, heartfelt coming-of-age story, Neil (Michael Johnson) is a lonely teenage boy who spends his days avoiding eye contact and his nights crafting erotic fan fiction about his favorite science fiction hero, Vanguard (Tishuan Scott). But when Neil learns that his schoolmate Julia (Hannah Marks) shares his passion for unorthodox storytelling, the pair’s […]

MFF16: African-American Interest

Montclair Film Festival 2016 is proud to present this wide-ranging selection of unforgettable documentary features and shorts, and poignant dramas that depict aspects of the African-American experience. ACCIDENTAL COURTESY: DARYL DAVIS, RACE, & AMERICA Daryl Davis is not your ordinary race-relations activist. His controversial approach to combating racial animus involves befriending leaders of the Ku Klux Klan and […]

FREE IN DEED: Blind Faith

A single working-class mom (Edwina Findley) turns to her faith in search of a desperate miracle in Jake Mahaffy’s award-winning FREE IN DEED. Based on real events and set in the distinctive world of storefront churches, where the disenfranchised unite in search of refuge, FREE IN DEED depicts the desperate attempt by a lonely minister […]

Audible Lounge is Open

Stop by and visit us at the Audible Lounge 544 Bloomfield Avenue, Montclair Mon. – Sat. 11AM – 5PM Buy tickets in person Browse and purchase new MFF16 merchandise See our amazing Immigration Art Installation Enjoy a cup of coffee from Official Coffee Sponsor, Java Love

Norman Reedus Conversation Added

In this expansive conversation, The Walking Dead star will share the stories that have shaped his unique career.

MFF16 Box Office

Have questions about the MFF16 Box Office? We’ve got you covered.

What Does ‘Standby’ Mean?

As you start selecting films from the stellar MFF16 lineup, you may encounter films and events that say STANDBY instead of BUY TICKETS. In case you’re wondering just what that means, we’re here to explain. While no film or event is ever 100% sold out, some films and events are going to be more popular than others. […]

#MFF16 Program Announced!

Drumroll, please! We’re thrilled to present the A+ #MFF16 lineup! Join us in Montclair for the 5th Annual Montclair Film Festival: April 29 through May 8. This year’s Festival will showcase over 150 films, special events, conversations, parties, and panels. In addition, over 100 filmmakers and other special guests will join us over the course of ten […]

2016 EFC Winners Announced

The Montclair Film Festival Announces 2016 Emerging Filmmaker Competition Winners This year’s competition, the festival’s 5th annual, features 20 winning films from 17 different area schools. The winning films will be screened at MFF’s annual Emerging Filmmaker Competition ceremony on Saturday, May 7, 2016 at 11:00 AM at the Wellmont Theater. A complimentary after party for […]

MFF Announces Key 2016 Films

Opening Night Film LIFE, ANIMATED Friday, April 29, 7:30PM, Wellmont Theater LIFE, ANIMATED is the real-life story of Owen Suskind, the son of the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ron Suskind and his wife, Cornelia. An autistic boy who couldn’t speak for years, Owen memorized dozens of Disney movies, turned them into a language to express love […]

Tribute to Richard Curtis

The MFF Announces Tribute To Richard Curtis In the first major announcement of the festival season, the MFF is proud to announce that writer, director, and producer Richard Curtis will receive the festival’s inaugural Filmmaker Tribute on Saturday, April 30, 2016, during the 5th annual Montclair Film Festival.   The daylong celebration will feature a […]

Immigration Art Installation

Click on the link below to register for the specific workshop you’d like to attend Sunday, March 20 from 1:00 – 4:00 Sunday, April 3 from 1:00 – 4:00   If you have questions, please contact or

MFF Announces Our 2016 Design!

The Montclair Film Festival is thrilled to announce one of the most anticipated events of each festival season: our 2016 festival design! Created by long-time MFF graphic artist Jesse Bussey of Bussey Creative, this year’s campaign will be featured on all MFF materials, including posters, banners, and merchandise. “We are so proud of Bussey Creative’s hard work on our new campaign,” […]

On the Road Again with Jordan Brady

by Joyce Kaffel  The weather couldn’t have been worse, rain pummeling the streets with a heavy, chilly downpour, still, the die-hards came out to the Bellevue Theater to view comedian Jordan Brady’s film, I Am Road Comic. He made it on the tails of his 2010 documentary, I Am Comic, a compilation of more than […]

A Place to Belong: A Place to Become

by Tanya Manning-Yarde I remember the lessons learned as both member and president of the local youth chapter of the National Council of Negro Women where I grew up. The strengthening of sisterhood through bringing divergent points of view into focus on a common goal. Learning the importance of outreach, of volunteering, to make a […]

Pollard & Erskine: A Cut Above

by Joseph Palestina Editing is undeniably one of the most crucial elements of the filmmaking process, if not the most important. In front of a focused and eager audience at the Montclair Film Festival, film editors Sam Pollard (Mo Better Blues, Clockers) and Lewis Erksine (Freedom Riders, The Murder of Emmett Till) were able to […]

20 Feet from Stardom Wins Oscar!

Congratulations to 20 Feet from Stardom director Morgan Neville and producers Gil Friesen and Caitrin Rogers winners of the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature! The documentary about the trials and tribulations of back-up singers grew from an idea by Friesen, a veteran music executive who enlisted Neville to direct. Friesen died from complications of leukemia […]

Oscar Eves’ Party, Quite the Buzz!

The Montclair Film Festival held it’s 4th Annual Oscars’ Eve Party on Saturday, March 1st celebrating the film industry and our vibrant arts community. Held at Chill on Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair, the party was filled with a slew of fun touches and activities from the “paparazzi” outside, to the “step-and-repeat wall” inside, a performance […]

We Have a Winner and a Poster!

The Montclair Film Festival in partnership with The Montclair Art Museum has named Jennifer Lange of Bloomfield the winner of our 2014 Official Poster Contest. After Lange’s design was chosen, Jesse Bussey embellished and polished the design to it’s final stage resulting in one of a kind imagery for MFF 2014! Lange’s design will be unveiled […]

MFF Mention from Colbert!

Host of Comedy Central’s Colbert Report and Montclair Resident, Stephen Colbert mentions the Montclair Film Festival during his interview with Darlene Love on the show February 25th. Love was featured in the Oscar-nominated documentary, Twenty Feet From Stardom, which premiered at the MFF 2013 opening night gala. The Colbert Report Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,Video Archive

The Votes are In!

THE VOTES ARE IN! Thank you for voting for MFF as your “Favorite Film Festival” for the second year in a row in the People’s Choice Awards. We can’t tell you how much this honor – and your support – means to us. We look forward to providing another exciting year of programming and […]

Three MFF Alums Oscar Nominees!

Nominees have been announced for 2014 Oscars and three of the five nominated Documentary Features are MFF 2013 alums, including our opening night film! The Act of Killing Dirty Wars Twenty Feet from Stardom  Click here to visit the official Oscar Nominee page.

Colbert/Fallon a Laugh Riot at NJPAC

Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Fallon caused a laugh riot on Sunday, November 24th at the lovely NJ Performing Arts Center as they joked, improvised, answered questions, and even sang, at a benefit fundraiser for the 2014 Montclair Film Festival. Read more about Stephen Colbert In Conversation with Jimmy Fallon below: Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Fallon Let Loose […]

Interview with Thom Powers

In case you missed it in The New York Times on August 29th, check out this fantastic article about Montclair Film Festival’s Artistic Director, Thom Powers. Kingmaker for Documentaries

NY Times Spotlight on MFF Alums

Manohla Dargis and A. O. Scott, film critics for The New York Times, discuss an international assortment of rising young filmmakers in “20 Directors to Watch”. Included are Montclair Film Festival alums Sarah Polley, Stories We Tell, Terence Nance, An Oversimplification of Her Beauty, and Andrew Bujalski, Computer Chess. Click here for for the discussion and a special […]

Behind the Scenes of Breaking Bad

One of the most exciting film panels during Montclair Film Festival 2013 featured Breaking Bad Cinematographer Michael Slovis along with Joel Stillerman, AMC’s VP of Original Programming, Production and Digital Content. Giving what amounted to an incredible two-hour master class, Slovis talked about the specific look of the series, the artistic and editorial choices that went […]

MFF Summer Series 2013

The Montclair Film Festival’s 4th Annual free outdoor SUMMER SCREENINGS series will feature four more films this summer on 6/21. 7/18, 8/16 and 9/6.

Remember to Forget

by Joyce Kaffel If you’ve ever known someone in the throes of memory loss, First Cousin Once Removed strikes a note, or more of a familiar chord. For those who have had no experience with loved ones unable to remember the pieces of their lives, the film is eye-opening and perhaps disquieting. First Cousin Once […]

Every Day is a Holiday

by Tanya Manning-Yarde After his mother’s passing, a centenarian of wise years and generous heart, my cousin began renovating his Brooklyn childhood home. Pulling up well-lived carpets, he discovers the floor underneath protectively covered by newspapers from 1947, the year his parents purchased the brownstone. Resourcefully, he did not quickly discard the papers, fire hazard […]

Best Kept Secret Enlightens

by Maura Thompson The Montclair Film Festival was host to the New Jersey premiere of Best Kept Secret, a film that had its world premiere at the International Film Festival of Boston where it took home the Audience Award for Documentary prize. After a brief introduction by MFF Artistic Director Thom Powers, Senator Bob Menendez […]

Sourlands, Now and in the Future

by Maura Thompson The Sourlands is a region in central New Jersey surrounding the Sourland Mountains. The land contains the largest stretch of unbroken land in the state, many farms, forests and sustainable energy researchers and start-ups. The movie, Sourlands, takes a close look at each of these communities and their role in the economic […]

Rafea: Solar Mama Sheds Light

by Merve Fejzula It would seem difficult in the era of laptops and cell phones to describe electricity as a luxury of modern technology. However, like many basic necessities industrialized countries often take for granted, there are still places in the world where the power to cook food and heat a home are precious. Rafea: […]

Summer Series Kicks Off with Annie!

Join us at sundown on Fri. May 31st at Presby Iris Gardens for a free outdoor sing-along screening of Annie.  Movie will begin at approx. 8:45pm; raindate is June 1.  Bring a lawn chair and be ready to sing to lyrics on the big screen! Directed by John Huston, this 1982 classic features a star-studded […]

You Will Be My Son

by Karen Backstein To create a fine wine, you first need what the French call terroir (what the elements of the soil impart to the taste of the grapes), along with cultivation and care. To raise a child, you need much the same thing: the right “growing conditions,” plus affection and attention. While Paul de […]

The Crash Reel Packs a Punch

by Jorge Lucas Of the many hard-hitting documentaries closing out this year’s Montclair Film Festival, only one took us to the extremes of action sports. The Crash Reel addresses the oft ignored dangers of action, or what we call “extreme,” sports through Kevin Pearce, a 2009 Olympics hopeful whose snowboarding career came to a tragic […]

Magic for Moviegoers

by Jessica Gonzalez Moviegoers were greeted on the steps of the Montclair Kimberley Academy by a fire eater in a green kilt and face paint, much to the delight of parents and children alike as they headed in to see Judd Ehlrich’s Magic Camp. Co-presented by Barista Kids, Magic Camp documents one week in the lives […]

Inside Gideon’s Army

by Tanya Manning-Yarde Gideon’s Army follows the lives of three new young public defenders. Filmmaker and former litigator Dawn Porter chronicles the trials and tribulations of neophytes Travis Williams, Brandy Alexander, and June Hardwick as they reconcile advocacy of impoverished clients with the harsh reality accompanying it. Each share reasons for becoming defenders and face […]

Concussion is a ‘Hit’

by Christopher Dixon A concussion is a ‘jarring’, or a shaking up of the status quo, and that’s what the movie Concussion did on May 5th as the second Montclair Film Festival drew to another successful close at the Bellevue Theater in Upper Montclair. As I entered the theater 45 minutes early, there was already […]

Getting the Big Picture with Slovis

by Christopher Dixon Michael Slovis stopped by the Montclair Film Festival on May 4th to discuss the art of cinematography, his participation with the groundbreaking series Breaking Bad, and just what it meant to be a cinematographer. The audience, a group of diverse people were there for various reasons . . . some there because […]

Violet and Daisy…and Fletcher

by Betsy Boesel Sagges Arriving at the MFF screening of his directorial debut, Geoffrey Fletcher, the Academy-Award-winning screenwriter for Precious, was gracious and charming, and eager for the audience to see Violet & Daisy, his first feature film. “Watch it with an open mind,” Fletcher urged. “The film starts and ends in starkly different places […]

Cocktails Anyone?

by Don Feinberg Hey Bartender screened at the Montclair Film Festival last Friday follows the stories of two bars, a struggling suburban corner bar and a thriving NYC hotspot. It portrays the owners and bartenders and what motivated them to do what they do. The history of the bartender since prohibition is examined and the evolution of the […]

‘Valley of Saints’ Vision

by Jessica Gonzalez Writer and director Musa Syeed had never been to Kashmir before the creation of Valley of Saints. During the Q&A session after the film, he admitted with a sheepish grin that he didn’t even speak Kashmiri while growing up in Bloomington, Indiana. Syeed’s family fled Kashmir after his father was held as a […]

Mel Brooks Makes Many Noises

by Joyce Kaffel While a couple of Mel Brooks fans waited in the Claridge Cinema lobby to see Mel Brooks: Make A Noise, their desire for a film filled with the iconic comedian’s shtick was overheard: “I hope we’ll get to see him in action, he makes everything funny,” said one of them. “Well, yes, […]

Gideon’s Army Sold-out Screening

by James Feinberg Montclair native Dawn Porter’s documentary, Gideon’s Army was shown in the first of two sold-out screenings on Tuesday, April 30th. The film follows the dedication, triumphs, and failures of three young public defenders in Georgia and Mississippi. After the screening, Film Festival Executive Director, Raphaela Neihausen interviewed Ms. Porter, as well as […]

Oh, What an Opening Night!

by Glenn Schuster As if our town didn’t already have so much to offer, the Montclair Film Festival’s opening night screening of Twenty Feet from Stardom on Monday, April 29th at Montclair State’s University beautiful Alexander Kasser Theater and after-party has given me reason to love Montclair that much more. From a glimmer in Co-Founder Bob Feinberg’s […]

Belafonte at NJPAC!

by Karen Backstein A celebration of Harry Belafonte—his life, his work, and his politics—took place at NJPAC in Newark on Sunday, April 28th. A kind of “pre-game” event before the Montclair Film Festival officially started the following evening, it featured a screening of the 2011 documentary Sing My Song, followed by a post-movie discussion with […]

MFF Membership Has Its Privileges!

The 2013 Montclair Film Festival is less than a month away so it’s time to think about which events you want to attend and what films to see. With a MFF Membership, not only do you get perks to our year-round events, but you get the opportunity to purchase tickets ahead of the general public […]

Join us at MAM for 2013 MFF Line-up!

Join us this Thursday, April 4th at the Montclair Art Museum’s Free First Thursday Nights program as we announce this year’s Festival line-up!  Some highlights for the evening include: Late hours, 5–9 p.m. Free admission to the galleries. Check out the exhibitions on view. Full-service bar with special First Thursday Night prices provided by Egan & […]

Kidz Shortz Awards Reception

A special reception for  Kidz Shortz Families and MFF members PLEASE RSVP BY: March 22nd to The winning films will be screened throughout the evening. Thank you to our event hospitality sponsors:                                             […]

Inocente Wins Academy Award

Congratulations to Inocente directors, Sean Fine & Andrea Nix, winners of the Academy Award for Best Documentary Short Film! Last year the award-winning husband and wife documentarians took to the crowdfunding site, Kickstarter to raise funds to finish and promote their film about Inocente, a documentary the Montclair Film Festival was proud to present as part of its inaugural […]

Kidz Shortz 2013

Kidz Shortz Awards Reception has been rescheduled to March 28th CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE 2013 WINNING FILMS

2013 Oscar Nominated Shorts

THIS EVENT IS SOLD OUT Come see all the Academy-Award nominated short films! They will be screened on the actual day of the Awards, Sun. Feb. 24th, 2013 from 10am – 5:30pm at Montclair State University, in University Hall, Room 1070 (directions below). For the past three years, these “underdogs” of the Academy have been […]

Venus and Serena

Reservations are highly recommended but not required.  Those with reservations will be seated first. RESERVE SEATS   

Oscars’ Eve Party!


Brothers in the Business

by Liz Dircks If there was one event to attend where two late-night comedians shared advice, insight, and absurd stories surrounding their wildly-popular satirical shows …  this was it. Piggybacking on the success of last year’s A Conversation with Stephen Colbert fundraiser, the Montclair Film Festival hosted Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert at […]