If so inclined, a person could spend every day of an entire year just travelling across the world from one film festival to the next, from Cannes to Cairo, from Karlovy Vary to Ouagadougou. If you can only afford to take a bus, though, there's another option: pass the entire summer attending the film festivals of New England. Not only does our region offer some of the country's best vacation spots, but it also hosts some of the most innovative, manageable, illuminating, and entertaining cinephilic celebrations around. They feature the best independent films, appearances by renowned filmmakers and actors, and events ranging from gala parties to writing roundtables. And if that gets too stimulating, you can always take a dip in the surf or bask on a veranda. Here are four of the best, a cinematic summer tour ranging from Woods Hole, Massachusetts, to Waterville, Maine.
The Perfect Family
PROVINCETOWN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL | June 15–19
As if the charms of Provincetown were not enough, this outstanding festival offers cutting-edge programming, easy-going accessibility, and celebrity elbow-rubbing. (Look, there's Tilda Swinton at the Wired Puppy!) But maybe my favorite event is the Q&A with the Filmmaker on the Edge Award winner, conducted by the inimitable John Waters. (Look, there's John Waters on his bike!) This year, Waters will be chatting with Black Swan auteur Darren Aronofsky, who, despite his dark movies, is actually a funny guy. The festival will also present awards to Vera Farmiga (Up in the Air) for Excellence in Acting and to documentary pioneer Albert Maysles (Gimme Shelter, Grey Gardens) for Career Achievement. And as usual, there are many great films you otherwise might never see, like Anne Renton's The Perfect Family, Mike Cahill's Another Earth, and Cam Archer's invitingly titled Shit Year.