Maui Film Festival kicks off Wednesday and continues through Sunday, June 16, with movie screenings at the outdoor Celestial Cinema in Wailea and the Castle Theater at Maui Arts & Cultural Center in Kahului.
Tickets and festival passes are available online at www.mauifilmfestival.com, by calling 579-9244; or at the door at each event, if still available. See ad on Page 10 for a complete schedule. Below, you'll find Wednesday's movies. Maui Scene will run the June 13 to 16 schedule next week.
"20 Feet from Stardom"
Mick Jagger, Sting, Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, Bette Midler and Sheryl Crow sing the praises of the voices behind much of the greatest music of our time - backup singers Merry Clayton, Lisa Fischer, Judith Hill, Claudia Lennear, Darlene Love and Tata Vega. This rockin' doc was the Opening Night Premiere at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. (Castle Theater, 8 p.m.)
"Fishing Pono: Living in Harmony with the Sea"
The story of Native Hawaiians living on Molokai who are using ancient conservation methods to restore fisheries in the waters of their island. (Celestial Cinema, 10 p.m.)
"Hawaiian: The Legend of Eddie Aikau"
The life of legendary Hawaiian big wave surfer, pioneering lifeguard, peacemaker, cultural activist and crew member of the Polynesian voyaging canoe Hokule'a comes to life in this compelling examination of the tragic decline and extraordinary rebirth of the Hawaiian culture as personified by a native son whose dynamic life and heroic death served as inspiration to an entire spiritual movement. (Celestial Cinema, 8 p.m.)
"Heart of the Country"
A story about the unconditional love of a father for his daughter that parallels the famous parable, "The Prodigal Son." Beautifully shot in rural North Carolina and co-starring singer/songwriter and actress Jana Kramer ('One Tree Hill') and Gerald McRaney. (Castle Theater, 2 p.m.)
"Hokule'a's Worldwide Voyage: Island Wisdom, Ocean Connections, Global Lesson"
An enlightening look at how the vision of the Polynesian Voyaging Society has manifested in its missions of discovery known throughout Polynesia and around the planet. Featuring Nainoa Thompson. (Celestial Cinema, 8 p.m.)
"Islands of Sanctuary"
Special sneak preview.The first half reveals challenges faced by Aboriginal Australians in their ancestral lands in the 21st century. In its second half, it tells the inspiring story of the triumph of Native Hawaiians, who under the guidance of their kupuna, and the ongoing efforts of many hundreds of committed activists, have been working for years to both heal and spark a cultural and environmental renaissance on Kaho'olawe. (Celestial Cinema, 10 p.m.)
It's Really That Simple
Breathtakingly photographed by Scott Stulberg, and with a pitch perfect musical score and narration by Chris Spheeris, this short film is simply stunning - in its simplicity, brilliance and clarity about how connected everything in the universe is to everything else in the universe. Better than a trillion words about enlightenment and spirituality. (Celestial Cinema, 8 p.m.)
Food as Art. Food as Nourishment. Food as Love. You'll laugh, you'll cry (OK, at least tear up a few times) at this remarkable documentary featuring three distinctly different restaurants-Michelin's 7th Best in the World, whose chefs surmount unbelievable challenges, a 150-years-'young' family restaurant in Iowa saved by its community, and a fledgling Mexican restaurant whose owners are doing all they can to survive. (Castle Theater, at 4 p.m.)
Terrence Stamp, Vanessa Redgrave and Gemma Arterton co-star in this London-set comedic drama about grumpy pensioner Arthur who is reluctantly inspired by his beloved wife Marion to join a highly unconventional local choir where the beautiful, young and savvy choir director persuades him to embrace life and embark on what turns out to be a hilarious, life-affirming journey of musical self discovery. (Castle Theater, 6 p.m.)