Virtual Cinema, Palm Springs Cultural Center
Our Virtual Cinema Program and our Virtual Event Program were both developed through a grant from a CA CARES Grant provided by California Humanities in conjunction with the State of California and the California State Library.
Enjoy the latest independent films on our Virtual Platform & Support the Palm Springs Cultural Center! We've selected films that are Palm Springs premieres, along with a mix of favorites from Desert Film Society, Cinema Diverse, Cinema Francais and PSIFF (as well as a sprinkle of retrospective films).
NEW THIS WEEK!
Shortlisted for the Academy Award for Best International Film 2021!
Few true stories tread the thin line between good and evil as precariously as that of Jan Mikolášek, a 20th century Czech herbal healer whose great success masked the grimmest of secrets. Mikolášek won fame and fortune treating celebrities of the interwar, Nazi, and Communist eras with his uncanny knack for “urinary diagnosis”. But his passion for healing welled up form the same source as a lust for cruelty, sadism, and an incapacity for love that only one person could ever quell – his assistant, František. As a show trial threatens to pry open these secrets and undo him, Jan’s dichotomies are put to a final test, with the fate of his life’s only love in the balance. A personal tale as replete with twists as the century itself, and a reflection on the price one pays for single-mindedly following one’s calling.
The brilliant work, personal struggles, and cultural impact of iconic American writers Truman Capote and Tennessee Williams explodes onto the screen in this innovative dual-portrait documentary. Filmmaker Lisa Immordino Vreeland masterfully collages a wealth of archival material, including dishy talk show appearances with Dick Cavett and David Frost, with clips from some of the duo’s most memorable movie adaptations: A Streetcar Named Desire, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, The Glass Menagerie, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and In Cold Blood. Featuring vibrant voiceover work by award-winning actors Jim Parsons (Capote) and Zachary Quinto (Williams), the film is dripping with wit and wisdom. It is a celebration of both men's fearless candor and often tumultuous friendship that honors how their identity as gay Southerners informed their timeless artistic achievements and relationships with family, colleagues, confidants, and – most significantly – each other.
In Stip, a small town in Macedonia, every January the local priest throws a wooden cross into the river and hundreds of men dive after it. Good fortune and prosperity are guaranteed to the man who retrieves it. This time, Petrunya dives into the water on a whim and manages to grab the cross before the others. Her competitors are furious – how dare a woman take part in their ritual? All hell breaks loose, but Petrunya holds her ground. She won her cross and will not give it up.
Starring Tony Award-winning and Emmy-nominated John Benjamin Hickey and featuring the debut of Niv Nissim, Sublet focuses on a New York Times writer (Hickey) who visits Tel Aviv after suffering a tragedy. The city's energy and his relationship with a younger man he meets there (Nissim) bring him back to life.
CINEMA DIVERSE DIRECTOR'S PICK!
About Eytan Fox:
Eytan Fox is one of Israel's leading (and openly gay) directors. His films, among them, Yossi & Jagger, Walk on Water, The Bubble, Yossi and Cupcakes, have been released theatrically in over 30 countries and have won 28 international awards, including from the Berlin Film Festival, the Tribeca Film Festival and the National Board of Review, USA.
Super Frenchie provides an intimate look at the life of professional skier and BASE jumper Matthias Giraud, who stops at nothing to pursue his passion for adventure. The film follows Matthias as he dares ever more dangerous stunts while simultaneously falling in love and starting a family. The story takes a turn when Matthias suffers a catastrophic crash just days before the birth of his first child.
Once upon a time, in a small family suburb on the outskirts of Rome, the cheerful heat of summer camouflages a stifling atmosphere of alienation. From a distance, the families seem normal, but it’s an illusion: in the houses, courtyards and gardens, silence shrouds the subtle sadism of the fathers, the passivity of the mothers and the guilty indifference of adults. But it’s the desperation and repressed rage of the children that will explode and cut through this grotesque facade, with devastating consequences for the entire community.
Shot in secret and smuggled out of Iran, There is No Evil is an anthology film comprising four moral tales about men faced with a simple yet unthinkable choice – to follow orders to enforce the death penalty, or resist and risk everything. Whatever they decide, it will directly or indirectly affect their lives, their relationships, and their consciences. Says director Mohammad Rasoulof: "As responsible citizens, do we have a choice when enforcing the inhumane orders of despots? As human beings, to what extent are we to be held responsible for carrying out those orders? Where does the duality of love and moral responsibility leave us?" Suspenseful, mysterious, and shot through with a sense of urgency, Rasoulof’s film is an incisive look at the moral strength and inner humanity of its protagonists. There Is No Evil has won audience awards and festival prizes around the world, including the Golden Bear (Best Film) at the Berlin Film Festival.
Back by popular demand! This annual showcase of some of the most exciting new cinematic voices from France includes the Oscar-nominated animated short Genius Loci and César Award winners And Then the Bear and So What if the Goats Die? Boasting festival favorites from Cannes, Sundance, Berlinale, and beyond, this feature-length program of delightful, funny, charming, and provocative French shorts is sure to fill you with joie de vivre. New French Shorts 2021 is made available through Young French Cinema, a program of UniFrance and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy. Distributed by Kino Lorber.
From Academy Award® winning director Caroline Link (Nowhere in Africa) comes an adaptation of acclaimed British author Judith Kerr’s classic novel based on her childhood memories. The story of a Jewish family's escape from 1933 Berlin to Europe tackles prejudice, exile, displacement and adaptation, as told from the perspective of the author’s alter ego, nine year-old Anna Kemper. Anna is too busy with schoolwork and friends to notice Hitler’s face glaring from posters plastered all over 1933 Berlin. But when her father (Oliver Masucci) - based on the prominent theater critic Alfred Kerr - suddenly vanishes, the family is secretly hurried out of Germany.
As Mandarin-language teacher Ling continues with fruitless IVF treatment while taking care of her ailing father-in-law, she finds herself slowly drawn towards a promising student who seems to have been abandoned by his parents. Outside it’s monsoon season, but Ling’s inner turmoil looks set to get her into a heap of trouble. Director Anthony Chen brings this simmering Singapore-set drama to boiling point, whilst using an associative and poetic editing rhythm, repeating colors and shapes to highlight the small parallels that link people, and reveal the profound in lovely and subtle ways. With uniformly sensitive performances from the returning cast of Ilo Ilo, Chen’s Wet Season is the classy and well-measured teacher-student drama that will get you weeping this autumn.
Winner of awards at Tribeca and Vancouver, MY WONDERFUL WANDA is a delightful satire of the haves and the have-nots set against the backdrop of a gorgeous lakeside villa in Switzerland. At the story’s center is Wanda, a Polish caretaker who has left her own small children in Poland to look after Josef, the stroke-ridden patriarch of the wealthy Wegmeister-Gloor dynasty. Wanda is adept in navigating the tricky family dynamics between the two grown (if still childish) offspring and the elegant if controlling matriarch Elsa, along with the sporadic intervention of animals stuffed or alive, but an unexpected turn of events turns everything upside down.
Based on filmmaker’s, Maria Sødah, own experiences, Hope is the story of Anja and Tomas, longtime romantic partners whose large, blended family is upended when Anja receives a terminal cancer diagnosis. Alone with her grief and her fears, Anja realizes that she needs Tomas’ full help and support. Anja and Tomas are thrown into a crash course in mutual trust, and eventually a joint struggle, to deal with this unexpected and premature death. By getting to know each other anew, they unconsciously become the principal characters in a love story where they finally learn to truly love each other after a long life together.
HAVE A TECHNICAL QUESTION? Every film released in our Virtual Cinema is available through the individual distributor's websites and streaming services. If you are having technical issues, please visit the respective film page and browse the links to the distributor FAQ and contact information.