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Siren Nation Film Festival

By EMILEE BOOHER

As hard as Sarah Sparks searches, there is no instruction manual for having a baby. There's no detailed map explaining how part A attaches to part B. But the main character of Small, Beautifully Moving Parts (1 pm Sunday, Nov. 6), convincingly played by Anna Margaret Hollyman, has replaced most of her human relationships with a technology obsession. So, basically she’s afraid she won’t relate to her unborn child. It’s a justified fear when she makes comments like, "It's actually a pretty good-quality font for a disposable," after watching the word "pregnant" appear on her pregnancy test. With an irresponsible mother who disappeared years ago, and a father who gets his jollies through cyber relationships, it’s obvious why Sarah feels disconnected and seeks comfort through predictable, lifeless gadgets. Despite the techie fixations, her character is rather refreshing—smart, skeptical, curious and collected—and her pregnancy forces her to face some harsh realities. Eve and the Fire Horse (11 am Sunday, Nov. 6) brushes on themes of religion, superstition and death with a balance of humor and melancholia. Told from the perspective of Eve Eng, a young and spirited Chinese girl, the film directed by Julia Kwan pushes clashing cultures of Eastern and Western philosophies through uncomfortably impressionable minds. Coming from a 1970s Chinese-Canadian family, Eve and her older sister stray from their Buddhist upbringing and start practicing Catholicism after a string of unfortunate incidents plague their household. The most interesting element is that the protagonist hasn’t seen her 10th birthday, adding endearing qualities of naivete, innocence, imagination and curiosity to the clichéd idea of finding faith.

 

Special Note

Mission Theater. Thursday-Friday and Sunday, Nov. 3-4 & 6. Opening night film Hit So Hard: The Life and Near Death Story of Patty Schemel screens at 7 and 9:30 pm Thursday, Nov. 3. See full listings at sirennation.com.
 
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  • Release Date: Tuesday, November 1, 2011
  • Critic's Score: 75
  • Watch the trailer
 

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