Paul Wellman

Lights! Camera! Action! It may be a worn phrase, but it’s an apt one to herald the 32nd annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival, which kicks off on Wednesday, February 1, and illuminates our seaside berg with all things cinematic. This year’s program, once again, offers an array of events that will keep even the staunchest cinephile a twitter. The 11-day festival agenda features, among other things, an abundance of movies from the U.S. and around the globe; tributes to actors who took daring roles and so rose above the fray; panels with screenwriters, producers, and women in the business; and a slew of educational events that include family-friendly films, free screenings, and a three-day film-studies symposium.

Opening night begins at the Arlington Theatre with the world premiere of Charged, a documentary that recounts chef and outdoorsman Eduardo Garcia’s rehabilitation — both physically and emotionally — after nearly being killed by 2,400 volts of electricity while hiking in the Montana backcountry.

On Thursday, February 2, the festival will be humming along at full speed when it welcomes Denzel Washington, the recipient of this year’s Maltin Modern Master Award, to the Arlington stage. So get ready to throw responsibility to the wind and immerse yourself in the wonderful and exciting spectacle that is the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

• Denzel Washington Talks Fences: The actor/director will accept SBIFF’s Maltin Modern Master Award on February 2.

• Amanda Graves on Learning at the Movies: The SBIFF education director talks programs for young viewers and filmmakers.

• SBIFF 2017: Films to Find: Our staff suggests must-see movies at this year’s Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

• ‘I Am Not Your Negro’: Raoul Peck on James Baldwin and ‘I Am Not Your Negro’

• Complete 2017 SBIFF coverage here


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