My top 25 of SIFF 2007

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1.
Sounds of Sand (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
On the one hand, there's the desert eating away at the land. The endless dry season, the lack of water... (96 mins.)
Director: Marion Hänsel
 
2.
Khadak (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Set in the frozen steppes of Mongolia, a young nomad confronted with his destiny after animals fall victim to a plague which threatens to eradicate nomadism. (104 mins.)
 
3.
Hula Girls (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Young women in a small Japanese town look to revive their home's declining fortunes by building a Hawaiian village tourist attraction. (121 mins.)
Director: Sang-il Lee
 
4.
4 Minutes (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
An elderly piano teacher trains a young convict at a women's penitentiary. (112 mins.)
Director: Chris Kraus
 
5.
The Violin (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
In an unnamed Latin American country that closely resembles Mexico, the government fights a rural insurgency with torture... (98 mins.)
 
6.
The Yacoubian Building (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Meditations on corruption, fundamentalism, prostitution, homosexuality, and drugs in central Cairo. (161 mins.)
Director: Marwan Hamed
 
7.
Ghosts (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A young Chinese girl is smuggled into the UK so she can support her son and family in China. (96 mins.)
Director: Nick Broomfield
 
8.
Vitus (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
The film tells the story of a highly-gifted boy whose parents have demanding and ambitious plans for him - they want him to become a pianist... (100 mins.)
Director: Fredi M. Murer
 
9.
Dol (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
On his wedding day, a Kurdish man must flee through Turkish, then Iraqi and eventually Iranian Kurdistan. (90 mins.)
Director: Hiner Saleem
 
10.
Introducing the Dwights (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
The shy son of an aging comedienne tries to find a balance between his demanding home life, his new girlfriend, and his mother's second chance at fame. (105 mins.)
Director: Cherie Nowlan
 
11.
Getting Home (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A black comedy about a farmer who tries to bring home the body of his friend, who died far from their town. (110 mins.)
Director: Yang Zhang
 
12.
Almost Adult (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
Two teenage girls move to the U.K. and help one another deal with the horrors of their past. (89 mins.)
Director: Yousaf Ali Khan
 
13.
The Banquet (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
A loose adaptation of Hamlet, "The Night Banquet" is set in an empire in chaos. The Emperor, the Empress, the Crown Prince, the Minister and the General all have their own enemies they would like to finish off at a night banquet. (131 mins.)
Director: Xiaogang Feng
 
14.
Emma's Bliss (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Max is very ill. He decides to steal in his own company. But when he tries to run away with the money, he has a car accident that takes him to Emma's pigs farm. (99 mins.)
Director: Sven Taddicken
 
15.
Dasepo Naughty Girls (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
Based on the Internet comic strip, Multi-Cell Girl (a.k.a Dasepo sonyo) follows the sexual adventures in one seriously bizarre high school. (103 mins.)
Director: Je-yong Lee
 
16.
Ten Canoes (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
A story within a story. In Australia's Northern Territory, a man tells us one of the stories of his people and his land... (90 mins.)
 
17.
Day Watch (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
A man who serves in the war between the forces of Light and Dark comes into possession of a device that can restore life to Moscow, which was nearly destroyed by an apocalyptic event. (132 mins.)
 
18.
My Friend & His Wife (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
(Korean with English subtitles) Two best friend, one a successful businessman, the other a happily married father... (110 mins.)
Director: Dong-il Shin
 
19.
It's Winter (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
The struggle to survive, for a generation, torn between wanting to leave its country, yet bound by blood to home. (86 mins.)
Director: Rafi Pitts
 
20.
Vanaja (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Vanaja, the 15 year old daughter of a financially troubled fisherman goes to work in the local landlady's house in hopes of learning Kuchipudi dance... (111 mins.)
 
21.
Lovesickness (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A three-part look at the ironies of love, with stories that involve a young boy, a hostage situation, and a divorced elderly couple caught in a love triangle. (81 mins.)
 
22.
Iska's Journey (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
(92 mins.)
Director: Csaba Bollók
 
23.
Requiem from Java (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Setyo (Martinus Miroto) and Siti (Artika Sari Dewi) are young married couple with a classic domestic issue: communication... (120 mins.)
Director: Garin Nugroho
 
24.
Bad Faith (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
(88 mins.)
Director: Roschdy Zem
 
25.
Like Minds (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
A forensic psychologist (Collette) is tasked with determining whether or not a minor should face murder charges for killing his schoolmate. (110 mins.)
Director: Gregory J. Read