What happens when a diverse group of LGBTQ youth dares to be “out” on stage to reveal their lives and their loves? THE YEAR WE THOUGHT ABOUT LOVE goes behind the scenes of one of the oldest queer youth theaters in America, with a camera crew slipping into classrooms, kitchens, subways and rehearsal rooms. Boston-based True Colors OUT Youth Theater transforms daily struggles into performance for social change. With wit, candor and attitude, this cast of characters captivates audiences who may be surprised to hear such stories in school settings. THE YEAR WE THOUGHT ABOUT LOVE introduces a transgender teenager kicked out of her house, a devout Christian challenging his church’s homophobia and a girl who prefers to wear boys’ clothing even as she models dresses on the runway. When real bombs explode outside their building, the troupe becomes even more determined to share their stories of love to help heal their city. Brave, encouraging, and funny…these are the inspiring LGBTQ youth leading us into the future.

Consistently ranked among the greatest films ever made, Buster Keaton’s THE GENERAL continues to inspire awe and laughter with every viewing. Rejected by the Confederate army and taken for a coward by his beloved Annabelle Lee (Marion Mack), young Johnny Gray (Keaton) is given a chance to redeem himself when Yankee spies steal his cherished locomotive (“The General”). Johnny wages a one-man war against hijackers, an errant cannon and the unpredictable hand of fate while roaring along the iron rails.

Ten-year-old Fernando is a precocious boy living in a small Brazilian town in the 1930s with faithful friends and a strict yet loving family. His desire to tinker, explore and experiment constantly lands him in trouble. A resolution to this perpetual cycle of penance presents itself when a “twin Fernando” arrives unexpectedly. He willingly serves Fernando’s time (detention, grounding in his room, even attending school) while Fernando lives a life of indulgence, fishin’ n’ forts.  All goes well, until it doesn’t!

This futuristic film, with BLADE RUNNER-esque grit, depicts a world where robots are as prolific as cell phones are today. Since his mother passed away, Tibor, age 11, has relied more strongly than ever on his lifelong friend T.I.M. (The Incredible Machine). T.I.M. is in need of a major overhaul, and so Tibor’s father trades T.I.M. in for an upgrade. But how do you upgrade a “friend”? A peril-filled quest, Tibor’s search for T.I.M. puts his friendship to the ultimate test.

Wickie longs to be a big, strong Viking like his father, Halvar. When Halvar is kidnapped, it’s Wickie’s brain that must save his father and not his under-developed Viking brawn. He leads the men on this swashbuckling adventure as they set off over raging oceans, tropical beaches and dangerous icy wastelands, all in pursuit of the legendary treasure of the Gods (which contains the key to his father’s release). Suspending disbelief will ensure a smile on your face. Made by Christian Ditter, director of previous PCFF crowd favorites “The Crocodiles” (PCFF 2011) and ”Crocodiles Strike Back” (PCFF 2012).

Tony, almost ten years old, is desperate to prevent his parents from splitting up. He begins to suspect that his father has fallen for another woman: specifically, the Queen of Holland. Tony takes matters into his own young hands and confronts the Queen herself – over a ping-pong table. He eventually learns to accept that some things just cannot be fixed, including his parents’ marriage. Tony’s story has all the elements needed to tell this complicated, modern-day fairy tale with lots of love, originality, humor, and confidence. “Tony 10” takes the sensitive subject of divorce and shows that happiness can be found by starting new relationships and redefining old ones – with help from the Queen of course!

What can be more nerve-wracking for kids than starting at a new junior high? How about starting at a haunted one?! When Eugenio, Cebola and Frida explore their future stomping grounds, they head straight into an out-of-this-world adventure involving time travel, a magic umbrella, a daring rescue and one truly terrifying teacher.

Abila, 14, lives in the violent slum jungle of Kibera, in Nairobi, Kenya. He is a Luo – one of the many Kenyan tribes. He is smitten with Shiku, who is the same age, but she is a Kikuyu, and that is the problem. Boys and girls from different tribes are not encouraged to mix. But Abila has another problem. At the start of the film, he finds his father in a disturbing state. His mother says it’s a hangover, but Abila has a feeling there’s more going on. He finds out that his father’s soul has been stolen by a Nyawawa, a female spirit. Despite the hostility of the surroundings, Abila and Shiku set off together to save the soul of Abila’s father.

You could say that the location is the real protagonist of this film. Shot in 13 days, this film was made in Kibera, where more than one million people live and battle for survival. Its residents acted the film’s parts.

This film emerged from a workshop and benefited from production support by the famous German director Tom Tykwer. Above all, the camera work is of a level that is seldom seen in African pictures. The authentic background in combination with the outside support turned “Soul Boy” into a sparkling – and surprisingly professional-looking — short film.

If there were such things as candy for your eyes, “Tales of the Night” would be it. Your vision will be tempted by the detailed day-glo backgrounds bursting with color and kaleidoscopic patterns. Director Michel Ocelot (“Azur & Asmar,” PCFF 2011) blends history with fairytale as viewers are whisked off to animated enchanted lands full of dragons, werewolves, captive princesses, sorcerers and enormous talking bees. The “tales” are six fascinating and exotic fables woven together, each unfolding in a unique locale, from Tibet, to medieval Europe, an Aztec kingdom, the African plains and even the Land of the Dead.

REVIEWS:

“Instantly timeless! A triumph of intricate craftsmanship!” – Variety
“Stunning! Newcomers to Ocelot’s work will be filled with wonder!” – Screen Daily
“Both a worthy successor to the first four films by Michel Ocelot, and a proposal for an innovative new approach that transcends the boundaries of animation.” – Cahiers du cinema

In a contemporary small town around a closed-down factory, bored ‘tween friends, some from broken homes, are looking for creative ways to spend their time. They build forts, issue dares and tease one another. The Crocodiles is the name of this gang of 11-year-olds and a newcomer (who uses a wheelchair) wants in.

Part Hardy Boys, part “Stand By Me,” part “The Outsiders,” this fast-paced film combines classic elements with a larger message of breaking down stereotypes. Please be warned that the dialogue is stronger than an American audience may be used to. There is a domestic abuse scene. Slurs and stereotypes are expressed. However, this difficult dialogue is not used for shock value. It is part of the larger and more important narrative of kids learning how hurtful their exclusionary actions and hateful words can be, then making amends.