Ten promising films we hadn’t seen at press time 

Roll the Dice

Roll the Dice

1. ALPS (9:15 p.m. April 22, 2:30 p.m. April 23)

A bizarre company offers the services of inexpert actors who will play the roles of dead people missing from the client's life.

Why we're excited: We can't wait to see what director Yargos Lanthimos does to follow up his 2011 NaFF selection Dogtooth.


2. DON'T FOLLOW ME (I'M LOST) (6 p.m. April 20; also showing free at The Basement 1 p.m. April 21)

On tour with Bobby Bare Jr. as the singer, songwriter and bandleader barnstorms house parties and basement clubs across America.

Why we're excited: Bare cuts a pretty fascinating figure even when cameras are off, and his recent records have been dark, gorgeous and compellingly personal.


3. ELENA (7 p.m. April 23, 11:30 a.m. April 24)

When her wealthy husband's estranged stepdaughter shows up at his hospital bed, seemingly angling for an inheritance, mild-mannered Elena (Nadezhna Markina) quietly hatches a plan.

Why we're excited: A noirish tale from director Andrei Zvyagintsev, whose award-winning The Return was one of the best debut films of the Aughts.


4. LOUDER THAN LOVE: THE GRANDE BALLROOM STORY (8 p.m. April 21)

A documentary portrait of the Detroit music hall that hosted the greats of Motor City garage rock during the psychedelic era.

Why we're excited: Interviews with everyone from Alice Cooper, Don Was and Lemmy to Ted Nugent and the MC5's Wayne Kramer; lots of rare photographs and footage, including what is said to be an 8mm clip of The Who performing "Tommy" for the first time.


5. LEAVE IT ON THE FLOOR (9:45 p.m. April 20, noon April 23)

A teen with nowhere to go finds a new home in Los Angeles' vibrant drag-ball scene with the maternal "Queef Latina."

Why we're excited: Veteran director Sheldon Larry's been getting good notices for this splashy low-budget musical, said to stake out some of the same territory as the classic doc Paris Is Burning.


6. LUV (8 p.m. April 20)

Fresh out of the joint, former gangsta Vincent (rapper Common, who produced) gives his 13-year-old nephew (Michael Rainey Jr.) a day-long education in Baltimore's seamy underbelly.

Why we're excited: Great cast (Charles S. Dutton, Danny Glover, Dennis Haysbert), not to mention the charismatic star; Baltimore locale raises hopes that a little of Homicide or The Wire rubbed off.


7. THE PATRON SAINTS (3:15 p.m. April 22, 2:45 p.m. April 23)

The U.S. premiere of Brian M. Cassidy and Melanie Shatzky's documentary, which examines life at a home for the aged and disabled as recounted by its youngest resident.

Why we're excited: Irresistible money quote found online: "It's like Emily Dickinson's version of Enter the Void!"


8. PAYBACK (9:15 p.m. April 23, 11:30 a.m. April 26)

Using Margaret Atwood's Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth as her starting point, award-winning documentarian Jennifer Baichwal explores the many manifestations of owing something that must be repaid, be it vengeance, money, environmental catastrophe or injustice.

Why we're excited: Baichwal's NaFF prize-winner Manufactured Landscapes remains one of the most provocative art docs of recent years.


9. PUTIN'S KISS (8:30 p.m. April 25, 2 p.m. April 26)

A Russian teen celebrated as the pretty young face of a Kremlin-led political youth organization begins to question the group's dissent-squelching tactics.

Why we're excited: Advance word says the doc's story is unusually involving, especially once the events turn violent.


10. TALES OF THE NIGHT 3-D (2:45 p.m. April 22, noon April 23)

A series of six fairy tales, rendered by acclaimed French animator Michel Ocelot in his distinctive silhouette style and brilliant colors enhanced by stereoscopic effects.

Why we're excited: Ocelot's gorgeous films deserve a Ghibli-style breakout, and the trailer online dazzles with handmade charm.

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