Best in Show

Lei Chic

Your days are getting pretty monotonous.

Wake up. Fight traffic. Work. Eat lunch. Work. Fight traffic. Watch TV. Pass out.

Total snooze fest. You almost dozed off just reading about it.

Shake things up at the 32nd Hawaii International Film Festival. Starting Thursday, 219 films from 43 countries will be available for your viewing pleasure.

And since it’s impossible to see them all (you’ve still got that pesky thing called work), we asked HIFF assistant programmer Minette Ferrer to narrow down her top six picks.

For some serious lights, camera, action.

Lei Chic

Getting Up: The Tempt One Story

“Tempt is a legend in Los Angeles and, one could say, the entire graffiti community around the world. We can never predict something as tragic as being stricken with Lou Gehrig’s disease but we can be optimistic about it. Seeing all the players around the world collaborate together to witness his art again shows how much we care about the creativity and know-how of individualism.”

Lei Chic

My Neighbor Totoro

“Not only is this a highlight in our film program, it’s a highlight film of my life. I love the bond between the sisters and what they share with each other. People always ask us to bring family-friendly films to the festival and with our Ghibli Retrospective this year, we hope that everyone enjoys them as much as we do.”

Lei Chic


“This is the opposite end of the spectrum regarding family-friendly films. It really pushes the edge but an element that I believe might fall from the cracks for this film is the cinematography. The story comes together so perfectly because of it. Starlet has such an unusual relationship between the female adult film star and the older women, audiences will really get a kick out of it. You might have to shut your eyes a couple times though.”


Lei Chic

Reviving Recipes

“Heirloom vegetables! I know the communities here that take food seriously will love this film. It provides a great history about the vegetables and produce in Japan and shows the new practices that people are taking to re-introduce them into dishes and households. Who doesn’t love being educated about food and seeing it in its purest form?”

Lei Chic

Beauty is Embarrassing

“Full disclosure, I watched Pee-wee’s Playhouse when I was young. This film shows how the show was made and who actually made it, which hit something inside me that I haven’t felt in a while. I wouldn’t say Wayne White is an eccentric, but more of a dedicated artist whose passion is ever-growing. Any creative person will love watching this film because it strikes a chord that only artists can hear.”


Lei Chic


“Remember Menudo? This is what I AM. reminds me of. It shows the young pop stars of Korea and what they have to go through so early on in their lives. Can you imagine starting your career at 12 years old? K-pop is also such a big phenomenon worldwide now, we couldn’t help but showcase this type of film. It’s Justin Bieber’s Never Say Never, but Gangnam Style!”

The 32nd Hawaii International Film Festival presented by Halekulani kicks off this Thursday at Regal Dole Cannery Stadium 18 Theatres and IMAX. Tickets cost $12 general admission, $10 students, seniors, military, children, $8 HIFF Ohana members and are available online or at HIFF Box Office, located at the theater’s Guest Services Desk. View the full schedule here.