Tag archives: film festival

Sacred Sites Screening Online 
By Steven Libowitz   |   April 16, 2024

Back in 2018, Dawa Tarchin Phillips, resident teacher of Bodhi Path Santa Barbara and co-founder and former Director of Education of UCSB’s Center for Mindfulness and Human Potential, led two dozen people on an around-the-world pilgrimage, visiting 17 sacred sites in five countries on four continents in 30 days.  “The intention was to learn about […]

Curtain Call for Student Film Festival
By Scott Craig   |   April 9, 2024

The results are in and the awards handed out at the second annual Montecito Student Film Festival on March 23 at Westmont’s Porter Theatre. About 150 people attended the festival throughout the day to watch 41 films, pared down from the more than 500 that were submitted.  Chase Olivera, an 18-year-old student at College of […]

Illuminate Film Fest Will Light up the Town
By Steven Libowitz   |   April 2, 2024

Santa Barbara certainly has no dearth of film festivals, but until now there hasn’t been a festival that directly addresses the region’s rare confluence of people who are both cinema-savvy and socially conscious. If Illuminate hadn’t come along, perhaps someone would have had to invent one to interact at that intersection.  Fortunately, the Illuminate Film […]

Student Film Fest Gains Popularity
By Scott Craig   |   March 26, 2024

The second annual Montecito Student Film Festival has exploded in popularity and gone global. Student filmmakers from 65 countries have submitted more than 500 films for the free event. Attendees can watch films throughout the day, Saturday, March 23, from 10 am – 5 pm in Westmont’s Porter Theatre. Festival producer Tamia Sanders (’24) says […]

Illuminate Ideas and Imagination Through Movies
By Steven Libowitz   |   March 12, 2024

The area’s newest film festival, and one with a decidedly different focus, gets going next month. The ILLUMINATE Film Festival, an annual celebration of short and full-length evolutionary cinematic endeavors that aspire to elevate humanity’s sense of self, purpose and possibility, is actually celebrating its 10th anniversary, but relocated from Sedona, Arizona last year. With […]

 Montecito Filmmaker, the Monarch and Monty
By Steven Libowitz   |   February 13, 2024

Monty Roberts is the Salinas-bred cowboy who spent years trying to turn the equestrian community from “breaking” horses through violence to instead gaining their confidence through trust and gentility. The story of the owner of the decades-long Flag is Up Farms in Solvang and his ability to train horses through his kinder method isn’t a […]

Gettin’ SBIFF-y with It
By Steven Libowitz   |   February 6, 2024

Get ready, Santa Barbara. It’s time to roll out the red carpet and rev up for 11 roaring days and nights of film screenings, seminars, panels, actor tributes and other awards, plus parties, as the 39th annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival takes over the town. Start stocking up on sleep and shore up your […]

Striking Gold: SBIFF Scores at Globes 
By Steven Libowitz   |   January 23, 2024

Just three weeks after this issue hits newsstands, the 39th Santa Barbara International Film Festival launches 11 days of screenings, seminars, speakers and sensational opportunities for sightseeing of stars. As always, Academy Award nominees and other award show hopefuls will be gracing the stage at the Arlington for in-depth conversations about their art during the […]

Gosling Going for Gold with SBIFF
By Steven Libowitz   |   January 16, 2024

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival has its annual Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film on tap in January as part of its pre-festival slate before the 39th festival takes over town February 7-17. Perennially praised actor Ryan Gosling is set to receive the prestigious prize at a black-tie dinner at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara […]

An Illuminating Evening
By Richard Mineards   |   November 28, 2023

The Music Academy’s Hahn Hall was socially gridlocked when the ILLUMINATE Film Festival, a leading event for evolutionary cinema, celebrated its 10th anniversary and move to Santa Barbara from Sedona, Arizona. The fun fest included an exclusive screening of The Monk and the Gun, a charming and provocative feature film set in Bhutan in 2006, […]

Illuminate Festival Moving to Town 
By Steven Libowitz   |   November 14, 2023

Illuminate Film Festival (IFF) is celebrating its 10th anniversary by moving from Sedona, Arizona, to another somewhat spiritually-elevated community much closer to the sea. A leading festival for evolutionary/conscious cinema – focusing on films that uplift, elevate, and inspire lasting personal and social transformation – the IFF is hosting a benefit reception at the Music […]

Outing to Ojai 
By Steven Libowitz   |   November 7, 2023

Film festivals are coming fast and furious in the middle of fall, with the Jewish Film Festival continuing for four more days through November 5, and the Ojai Film Festival set to hit the theater November 2-6. The latter fest found in the mountain community will screen more than four score films from around the […]

Film Fests from Around the World
By Steven Libowitz   |   October 31, 2023

The Santa Barbara Jewish Film Festival returns to the New Vic Theatre November 1-5 at a tense time in Israel and around the world, but aside from beefing up security at the theater, the festival is focusing on what it does best, which is to present some of the finest international cinema about the Jewish […]

NatureTrack in Goleta
By Steven Libowitz   |   October 3, 2023

The NatureTrack Film Festival is back in a big way for South Coast folks as the nonprofit’s re-mounting of its nascent festival moves to Goleta’s Fairview Cinemas for a weekend packed with nature-centric movies spanning adventures and stories via feature film and documentaries October 6-8. With new curators in place, the fest promises to be […]

A Reel-y Good Time
By Steven Libowitz   |   August 29, 2023

Dave Haws worked at Metropolitan Theatres while still in high school, including during the wintertime film festival, which sparked not only a lifelong love for movies, but also the desire to make a living in the industry. Haws, who was born and raised in Santa Barbara, headed out of town to get an education, majored […]

A Oui Focus on Film
By Steven Libowitz   |   July 18, 2023

Also making its post-pandemic return is SBIFF’s French Wave Film Festival, which takes over SBIFF’s Riviera Theatre July 14-20 to feature 11 new examples of contemporary French cinema – nearly all winners or nominees for César Awards (the French Oscars) or selections at Cannes. Details, screening times, and passes at https://sbiffriviera.com/wave.  

By Steven Libowitz   |   July 18, 2023

The NatureTrack Film Festival was created as an extension of the NatureTrack Foundation, the nonprofit that combats “Nature-Deficit Disorder” by transporting county students outside via a variety of no-charge field trips from the seashore to the inland oak woodlands to engage curiosity and instill appreciation and awe of nature. The festival had a fine first […]

A Fundamental Example for Earth Day
By Amélie Dieux   |   April 25, 2023

Walking in the grass, feeling the morning dew, hearing the serenity of the place – we might think of a beautiful park surrounded by nature, our senses alive with feeling. But instead here we are back in 1994 – when the Devereux Slough was still a golf course.  What so intrigued a businessman that he […]

Festival Awards Student Filmmakers
By Scott Craig   |   April 4, 2023

The curtain may have closed on the inaugural Montecito Student Film Festival, but there is still a buzz about the spectacular young filmmaking talent in our community. For about five hours, cinephiles filled Westmont’s Porter Theatre to screen 20 student films on March 25.  In the end, Westmont sophomore Campbell Ralph of Fox Island, Washington, […]

Montecito Home to Inaugural Student Film Festival
By Scott Craig   |   March 14, 2023

The inaugural Montecito Student Film Festival showcases the impressive work of undergraduate students from California colleges and universities with screenings on Saturday, March 25, in Porter Theatre. A jury of industry professionals and special guests will judge and award the top prizes, while polls determine the winner of the Audience Award.  “Montecito has a robust […]