On This Page:   Ticket Info    |   About the Films    |   Post-Film Discussion    |   About Luna & the BCF    |   Dinner & A Movie    |     Click here for online tickets

Essential Event Info

W H A T :

    (a portion of the proceeds will benefit the Breast Cancer Fund)
  • The ten best LunaFest short films, running time approx. 100 minutes.
  • Genre: Shorts - live action and animation; drama, comedy and documentary.
  • Discussion after the films, featuring:
    Tue, Jan 27:  Sara Mahle & Andrea Torrice
    Wed, Jan 28:  Amy Cunningham & Melissa Godoy
  • The films are NR (not rated) but suitable for all audiences, high-school and older.

  • W H E N :

  • Tuesday, January 27
  • Wednesday, January 28

  • Screening at 7:00 pm,
    doors open at 6:30 pm
    Weds, Jan 28 rescheduled for Weds, Feb 11, 7 pm

    W H E R E :

  • Cincinnati Art Museum,
    953 Eden Park Drive, Mt. Adams.
  • Easy Access, Free Parking
    click for Directions & Map

  • T I C K E T S :

  • Cincinnati Art Museum,
  • Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for Art Museum members and students with valid ID.

    $8 tickets are ONLY available online, by phone, at the Museum, and at the door subject to availability.


  • tollfree 1-877-548-3237
  • at the Art Museum

  • ...and at these locations
    ($10 tix, cash only),
    click each location below for a map:

  • Clifton-Ludlow Ave. -
    Sitwell's Coffee House
    513 281 7487

  • Mt. Lookout Square -
    Lookout Joe Coffee Roasters

    513 871 8626

  • Northside-Hamilton Ave -
    Shake It Music & Video
    513 591 0123

  • Downtown Cincinnati -
    Coffee Emporium
    513 651 5483

  • Tickets will also be on sale at the door, subject to availability.

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    To complete your night out, we've arranged a dinner discount with
    conveniently located just a few blocks from the Art Museum at 906 Nassau Street near Gilbert Avenue.

    CWC patrons attending LUNAFEST will receive a 10% food-and-beverage discount (excluding alcohol) for dinners before or after the film.

    Andy's features great Lebanese meat, chicken, fish and vegetarian specialities, including Kabobs, Shwarma, Lebanese Pizza, Baba Ghannouj, Labneh, Falafel, Hummus with Tahini, etc.

    To receive the discount tell your server when you order that you are a CWC patron. Reservations suggested, call 513.281.9791. Click here for directions, menu and general info and click here for a map.

    NOTE: Pre-film dining at the Terrace Cafe at the Cincinnati Art Museum is no longer possible -- the restaurant has been closed on Wednesday evenings since last November.

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    Lunafest 2009
    Get the Flash Player to see this trailer.
    90-second trailer

    "Cincinnati World Cinema is the only local purveyor of short films, and as in past years, it's time once again for the annual LunaFest collection. This collection of ten titles is made by women and about women, but is for everyone with a serious love of film and quality filmmaking." ~ Larry Thomas, WVXU
    >>>   Check out the WVXU review of Lunafest ...     listen here,  or  read it here.

    SELECTED FROM 600 ENTRIES, this year's ten LunaFest short film winners have much in common:

  • they offer exceptional storytelling, creative delivery, powerful messages and an intangible quality that conveys a bit of magic;
  • they come from ten accomplished women filmmakers, with roots in Canada, Hungary, India, Iran, the Philippines, Portugal, the UK and the USA;
  • the themes are universal, dealing with relationships, family, self-perception, gender, health and aging.

  • ENTERTAINING AND INFORMATIVE, these award-winning short dramas, comedies and documentaries will tug at your heartstrings, make you smile and make you think. An added bonus is the opportunity to talk with talented, award-winning filmmakers after the screenings, who will share thematic and cinematic insights.

    About The Films

    Director Renuka Jeyapalan, Canada, 2005, 14:00, live-action.

    A battle of wills develops between a nine-year-old girl and her mother's new boyfriend in this at times hilarious tale of modern family politics. Heart-warming yet bittersweet, the film is poignant without giving in to sentimentality. A definite must-see for audiences of all ages.

    Director Cláudia Varejão, Portugal, 2007, 08:30, live-action.

    A country house. A weekend. A family. Time goes by. Silence prevails. "But listen to the breath of the unceasing message made of silence..." In this simple sketch of a middle-class Portuguese family on a weekend trip, rife with small cruelties and inconsideration, Cláudia Varejão draws lovely, understated performances from her small cast, conveying the daughter's mounting emotional turmoil with an inspired use of imagery.

    Director Jennifer Halley, Canada, 2008, 11:00, live-action.

    A dark comedy ... The little voice in Sarah's head has been let loose for too long. Now it's running the show. Pushed to her breaking point, Sarah battles her not-so-inner demon and realizes all she needs is her own voice.

    Director Nazanin Shirazi, Iran/USA, 2008, 12:00, live-action.

    In Iran, people gather before the Persian New Years to celebrate Chaharshanbeh Suri, or Red Wednesday. In this ancient Zoroastrian tradition, people jump across a series of flames, asking the fire to take away their sickness and misfortune and provide them with health and happiness for the upcoming year. Sholeh, nine, lives in the US with her ailing mother. It is the eve of Red Wednesday, and she is determined to revive her mother. For the first time in her life, Sholeh attempts to recreate this celebration, hoping the fires will rekindle her mother's health and spirit.

    Director Lisa Blackstone, USA, 2008, 12:30, live-action.

    Blackstone's documentary begins at the College of St. Benedict in Collegeville, MN where 300 girls and women from around the nation have convened for the Women's Wrestling National Championships. Via interview and action footage, we learn about the initial appearance of women's freestyle wrestling at the Olympics, and the young women who welcome the chance to rank against peers who are not only of the same weight class but of the same gender.

    Director Jesse Erica Epstein, USA, 2007, 8:00, live-action.

    Epstein's LunaFest entry last year, The Guarantee, was an audience favorite. A documentary about mannequins, religion, and perfection, 34x25x36 continues her series of short films about body image and stereotypes.

    Director Harriet Storm, USA, 2007, 7:30, live-action.

    An individual preparing for transgender reconstructive surgery reflects on what is left behind and what the future holds.

    Director Julia Pott, UK, 2007, 4:00, animation.

    A playful animation about awkward moments in young romance.

    Director Christina Alexandra Voros, USA/Hungary, 2007, 12:00, live-action.

    Two sisters, 87 and 93 years old, reflect on the dying of a craft, the importance of family and the persistence of the creative spirit. Before the Hungarian revolution Vali and Mimi had separate lives: the elder was a bohemian costume designer, the younger a pragmatic tomboy who drove a taxi. After nearly losing their lives in a Russian work camp the sisters escaped to the US and began rebuilding their world as 40 year-old women in a foreign land.

    Their circumstances forced them to embrace their differences and prioritize family over their singular aspirations. Nearing the end of their lives, two women are inseparable parts of a collective story, fiercely independent, tirelessly honest and burdened with the perspective of regret, their relationship encompasses an era and exemplifies the paramount importance of creativity in a world of perpetual change.

    Director Jessica Sison, USA/Philippines, 2006, 5:30, live-action, in Ilocano and English.

    This documentary features the director's 99 year-old grandmother, Elena Bautista. As she sits alone in her church, we hear her sing a sad Filipino folk song about a mother who has to tell her young children that she is going to die soon. Later on, we observe Elena dancing a Filipino folk dance and hear her reflect on her long life, her mother's death and her own impending death, which she faces fearlessly.

    Not your standard "talking head and b-roll" documentary, through compositing, metaphoric use of color and the mixing of traditional Filipino music with modern music, the visuals and sound design are as haunting and poetic as the story. In this day and age, when everything is documented and even cell phones have cameras, Elena's story reminds us that there are people whose only souvenirs of the ones they love are memories.

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    LunaFest Filmmakers

    Director Renuka Jeyapalan,
    "Big Girl"

    Director Claudia Varejao,

    Director Lisa Blackstone,
    "Grappling Girls"

    Director Jesse Epstein,

    Director Harriet Storm,

    Director Christina Voros,
    "The Ladies"

    Director Julia Pott,
    "My First Crush"

    Director Jessica Sison,
    "Kuna Ni Nanang"

    Director Nazanin Shirazi,
    "Red Wednesday"

    Director Jennifer Halley,
    "Sarah in the Dark"

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    Post-Film Discussion

    Tuesday, Jan 27:  Sara Mahle & Andrea Torrice
    Wednesday, Jan 28:  Amy Cunningham & Melissa Godoy

    CWC is delighted that these talented, award-winning local filmmakers are contributing their time to talk with you about the LunaFest films and share an inside perspective on the filmmaking process. Please read more about the discussion leaders below.

    Amy Cunningham Amy Cunningham  Wednesday, January 28

    As a partner in Cincinnati-based Mirepoix Pictures, Amy was the cinematographer for the 2007 short film HELD IN SWAY, which won the 48-Hour film competition, screened at Cannes; and later at Cincinnati World Cinema. She is currently working both in front of the camera and as producer for WITHOUT MIRRORS, a Mirepoix film that should wrap in February.

    Amy's credits extend beyond Cincinnati: she has worked on such films as the PBS documentary THE NEW METROPOLIS and the Emmy winning documentary A LION IN THE HOUSE; the television series THE 1st 48; and music videos for Feist and 3 Doors Down. Other recent activities include ongoing engagement for the shooting of MTV specials and two films due for release in 2009: TRUE NATURE and IMMORTALLY YOURS. Ms. Cunningham began her career as an actress and model before attending Wright State University's Motion Picture Production program.

    Melissa Godoy and Arlonzia Pettway ... Photo by Matt Arnett Melissa Godoy  Wednesday, January 28

    Multi-faceted Melissa is active as a documentary producer and director, and she develops independent film and programming for public television. Her work has earned numerous industry awards including one national and two regional Emmys, the 2008 Best Electronic Media Award from the American Society on Aging, and the Gold World Medal in Humanities at the New York Film and Video Festival.

    During the last presidential election, Godoy was a field producer/director of photography for the cinéma verité feature, ELECTION DAY, by Katy Chevigny, which had its world premiere at the South by Southwest Festival in March, 2008, and screened at Cincinnati World Cinema in October 2008.

    In 2007, her award-winning documentary on creativity in aging, DO NOT GO GENTLY had it's world premiere with Cincinnati World Cinema in March and has been airing on PBS stations since May of that year. Before that Melissa was Line Producer of A LION IN THE HOUSE by Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert, which premiered at Sundance and aired on primetime PBS through Independent Lens in June of 2006.

    In 2004, she directed WHAT IS FREEDOM?, for the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, and was the coordinating producer and a director for the award-winning NEA & NEH-funded High Definition installation in the Cincinnati Art Museum. Before that, in 2003, she served as script supervisor to Julie Dash on BROTHERS OF THE BORDERLAND; and she directed CLASSICAL QUEST, a film featuring the the Starling Chamber Orchestra that compares classical music to time travel, has been airing on public television from 2000 to the present.

    With more than 20 years in the film industry and in addition to being a working mother and involved in social issues, Melissa has found the time to teach university-level scriptwriting and produce VIEWFINDER, a monthly talk show about independent filmmaking on Cincinnati's public television station, CET. She holds a B.S. in theatre from Northwestern University with a certificate in Creative Writing for the Media.

    Sara Mahle at LunaFest 2006 Sara Mahle  Tuesday, January 27

    As producer-director and lecturer, Electronic Media & Broadcasting, Sara is currently teaching Media Literacy and leading special projects classes at Northern Kentucky University, where she recently received her M.A. in Communication, with Honors. Sara brings extensive experience in teaching, production and media activism. Her work focuses on documentary and community based projects that raise awareness of social issues and attempt to create positive social change.

    Previously, after spending a year developing educational programs in Thailand, Sara worked for several years as the Education Coordinator for Media Bridges, a non-profit media arts organization in Cincinnati. Through her work, Sara helps bring the tools of video making and media analysis to classrooms throughout the city of Cincinnati. And, as curator of local film and video exhibitions presented quarterly by Underneath Cincinnati, Sara worked with many Tri-State area media artists, nurturing Cincinnati's emerging video community.

    A filmmaker herself, she studied film and photography at Ithaca College where she received her BFA in Film, Photography and Visual Arts in 1999. Ms. Mahle's works have screened at Cornell Cinema, the Olympia Film and Video Festival and the New England Experimental Film and Video Festival. In addition, she spent three years serving on the Central States Regional Board for the Alliance for Community Media and is an active advocate for media reform issues on the local and national levels.

    Andrea Torrice Andrea Torrice  Tuesday, January 27

    Andrea Torrice is an award-winning public television documentary and educational television producer/director whose work spans a range of contemporary issues.

    Her documentary, RISING WATERS, which explores the global warming debate through the personal stories of Pacific Islanders, was screened at the United Nations Earth Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2004. It aired on national PBS in the U.S. and on National Geographic's World channel in 110 countries. The program also screened in many festivals and won 18 national and international awards.

    Some of her award-winning documentaries include: FORSAKE CRIES: THE STORY OF RWANDA, which examines the historical factors contributing to the 1994 genocide; LARGE DAMS, FALSE PROMISES, which examines the impact large scale dams have in developing countries, and BAD CHEMISTRY, about the effects of low-level chemical exposures in our environment. She also produced ALL THAT IS SOLID MELTS, a short piece about the 9/11 terrorism attack, which aired on HBO's Frame by Frame program. She was co-field producer for ELECTION DAY (Ohio segment) which aired on PBS's POV in 2008. She is the owner of Torrice Productions, and has produced a range of award-winning programs for museums, universities, educational institutions, municipal governments and non-profit organizations. Her most recent documentary series THE NEW METROPOLIS, looks at the challenges and opportunities facing America's older, first suburbs.

    She received a Gold Award for excellence in community programming from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and her films have received awards from the National Environmental Teacher's Association, Hawaii, Chicago, San Francisco, London, Toronto, Women in Film, and South by Southwest film festivals. Her productions have been awarded funding from the Ford Foundation, the Independent Television Service of PBS, the CPB Minority Consortium, the National Science Foundation, the National Council of Churches, Surdna, Gund, Eastman and Columbia Foundations, Ohio Arts Council Artist residency, amongst others. She is a frequent guest speaker/presenter at conferences and forums, and was the 2007 recipient of the John M. Turner Lecture in the Humanities award, Lynchburg College.

    Andrea's career started almost 20 years ago at San Francisco's PBS affiliate, KQED TV, as a producer for the station's current and cultural affairs departments, and also produced segments for World Television News and the Lehrer News Hour. She currently lives and works in Cincinnati, Ohio with her husband and son.


    About Lunafest and the Breast Cancer Fund


    Started in 2001, LUNAFEST is an annual film festival that tours nationally. Beginning with a handful of venues, the festival has grown significantly each year and will reach approximately 100 communities via the current tour.

    LUNAFEST screenings are special evenings where women (and their friends, families, partners, husbands and boyfriends) can gather to view a selection of diverse films that embody a wide range of topics. The works range from documentaries and narratives to animated shorts and cover subjects such as women's health, relationships, cultural and racial diversity, sexuality and spirituality.

    LUNAFEST was created to support women on a number of levels:

  • To provide women filmmakers the opportunity to be seen and heard
  • To empower women by showcasing women's issues, stories and amazing moments
  • To support women's health and Luna's partnership with the Breast Cancer Fund
  • To support local communities and organizations
  • To provide women with a forum to communicate, share and inspire social change within their communities

  • About LUNA

    The genesis of Luna is straightforward, but no less significant for its simplicity. In Berkeley California, there is a company named Clif Bar, Inc. They make energy bars, primarily for athletes. In the late 1990s the women at Clif Bar, in response to their own needs and those of their friends, developed a product they called the Luna Bar, a nutritional bar with natural contents formulated to benefit women during and after pregnancy. Consumers soon discovered that a tasty product that provided 100% of daily requirements for essential vitamins and folic acid was a great thing and its popularity spread beyond expectant mothers to all women, and men as well.

    The resultant focus of LUNA is notable because of their clear and consistent commitment to improving the lives of their customers. Luna of course is in business to stay in business, but their philosophical model is conveyed through their operations and the programs and causes they support. The LUNAFEST film festival is one of several programs embraced by the organization. Please visit www.lunabar.com to learn more about their story, programs and products. If you are an aspiring filmmaker, or know someone who is, please check with the good folks at LUNAFEST regarding film submission procedures.

    The Breast Cancer Fund

    The Breast Cancer Fund (BCF) identifies and advocates for the elimination of the environmental and other preventable causes of the disease. Founded in 1992, BCF works from the knowledge that breast cancer is not simply a personal tragedy, but a public health priority that demands action from all. BCF works to challenge the myths and perceptions surrounding breast cancer while providing inspiration to the women who suffer from the disease. Through public education, prevention and public policy initiatives, BCF mobilizes the public and secures the institutional changes and legislative reforms necessary to eliminate the environmental links to breast cancer

    The Breast Cancer Fund was a founding partner of LUNAFEST in 2001, and LUNA continues to honor their work by directing 15% of all proceeds of LUNAFEST to their cause. In reciprocal fashion, LUNA is a primary corporate sponsor of the Breast Cancer Foundation. As such, LUNA is an active partner via financial support, event sponsorship, and participation in its programs to prevent breast cancer. LUNA's commitment to BCF is consistent with its long-term commitment to providing healthy food and a clean environment. With the wide reaching effects of breast cancer, and the devastating number of women diagnosed each year, the women of LUNA are proud to join in the fight and support BCF's mission. To learn more about the Breast Cancer Foundation please visit www.breastcancerfund.org.

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