International Film Festival returns to showcase diversity

Students can travel around the world without leaving Huntington, as the Marshall Artists Series presents its annual Fall International Film Festival, Nov. 1-4 at the Keith-Albee Performing Arts Center.

In its 82 years of Art and Entertainment, the Marshall Artists Series provides the annual fall release of six international critically acclaimed films for the Huntington community.

Director of the Marshall Artists Series, Angela Jones, said film has always been a segment of the Marshall Artists Series, but now producing it as an annual festival creates more enthusiasm and a larger audience.

“The very first event was an adventure type film back in the 1930’s,” Jones said. “And the films used to be played once a month still with 12 films a year, but doing it in a festival format gets more excitement and opportunity for people to see multiple ones over a short period of time.”

Jones said the film festival gives people a chance to gain knowledge of other countries’ humanities and social concepts of living.

“It’s important to expose everyone to the world not just the students, faculty, staff, everybody,” Jones said. “The film programming is a good way to bridge that gap of what we hear on the news to how much we really know about other people’s culture and family life.”

Jones said while researching films to part of the program, they consider high standards and relevance to Marshall’s campus.

“At the international film festival we try to do films that have received critical acclaims, won awards, been part of the Oscars or Toronto film festival that haven’t played in our area,” Jones said. “And films that represent languages that are taught on campus or the student body make of.”

Mark Williams, online media major at Marshall University, said the international film festival acts as a social endeavor and learning experience the Huntington community would not be able to attain anywhere else in the tri-state area.

“The festival gives people and students in the area a chance to see films that would never play in a theater within 100 miles of Huntington,” Williams said. “It also brings a different type of film to the area. American mainstream theaters are typically full of comic book movies, Pixar, remakes and the newest Dwayne Johnson movies. All that is fine, but for audiences looking for something different or out of the Hollywood shtick, the film festival is perfect for that.”

Williams said he is excited for the festival to watch the American film, RBG, due to its relevance and timeliness in today’s society.

“I’ve purposely avoided watching RBG on Netflix so I can see it at the festival,” Williams said. “I love a good bio documentary, and she is such a crucial figure for women’s rights in this country.”

Williams said international films do not just stimulate individuals’ brains by the creative movie making skills, but also provide intellect into another person’s world.

“Watching international movies of all kinds can give so much insight to a country’s culture,” Williams said. “I personally love seeing the subtle or not so subtle differences in film making styles, aesthetics, techniques, and approaches of foreign filmmakers. And it really does broaden your horizons.”

There will be four days of six movies that will be played at least twice, Thursday through Sunday. This year for the first time, a matinee of RBG will be offered on Friday at 11 a.m. at the requests of patrons. Films featured will be RBG, A Fantastic Woman, The Insult, Loveless, Back To Burgundy and Angels Wear White.

Tickets are still on sale for the Fall International Film Festival are $10.00 per film, $5.00 for part time students, and free to full-time Marshall students with a valid student ID. Tickets may be purchased at the Marshall Artists Series Box Office connected to the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center, which is open Monday through Friday 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Tickets may be purchased at the Keith-Albee Performing Arts Center. Tickets go on sale 15 minutes prior to each film.  For more information call 304-696-6656. To view movie trailers and to download film schedule visit

Lillie Bodie can be contacted at [email protected].