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MSPIFF 2023 - A Preview of the Program

April 10, 2023
Hunter Friesen
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I'm excited to announce that I'll be covering the Minneapolis St. Paul Film Festival for the first time this year! As a cinephile, I'm always on the lookout for new and exciting films. Whether it takes me around the world, or right to my own backyard, I look forward to discovering some hidden gems, meeting other film lovers, and celebrating the art of cinema. Follow me for updates on my festival experience, and let me know if you'll be there too!

In this article I've previewed most of the film I'll be seeing, with a few more listed here: The Beasts, L'immensità, Somewhere In Queens, Revoir Paris, Walk Up.

*All film descriptions and pictures have been supplied by the festival program*


An irreverent look at the incredible rise and stunning fall of the world’s first smartphone. Writer/director Matt Johnson is joined on screen by Jay Baruchel (This Is the End) and Glenn Howerton (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) in outstanding seriocomic turns that have us rooting for the doomed misfits behind this incredible true story.

Cairo Conspiracy

From Tarik Saleh, the director of the award-winning The Nile Hilton Incident, comes a bold, nuanced thriller set in a complex world Westerners rarely see. It centers on a gifted student from a small village who is offered a scholarship to Cairo’s Al-Azhar University, the power epicenter of Sunni Islam.

Dreamin' Wild

What if a childhood dream came true–-but thirty years later? Singer Donnie Emerson’s dream of success suddenly came true as he approached 50 years old. While it brought hopes of second chances, it also brought ghosts of the past and long-buried emotions to the whole family.

Flamin' Hot

Flamin’ Hot is the inspiring true story of Richard Montañez, the Frito Lay janitor who channeled his Mexican American heritage and upbringing to turn the iconic Flamin’ Hot Cheetos into a snack that disrupted the food industry and became a global pop culture phenomenon.

Other People's Children

When dedicated high school teacher Rachel (Virginie Efira) falls in love with Ali (Roschdy Zem), it’s not long before she also falls for his 4-year-old daughter Leila. Rachel must decide whether to embrace the inherent entanglements of her current situation, including the looming presence of Ali’s ex-wife Alice (Chiara Mastroanni) or strike out again on her own.

Polite Society

A merry mash-up of sisterly affection, parental disappointment and bold action, Polite Society follows martial artist-in-training Ria Khan who believes she must save her older sister Lena from her impending marriage. After enlisting the help of her friends, Ria attempts to pull off the most ambitious of all wedding heists in the name of independence and sisterhood.


From writer/director Cristian Mungiu (4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days), this gripping drama set in rural Transylvania looks at the ethnic conflicts, economic resentments and personal turmoil roiling a Romania still in thrall to some dangerous traditions and beliefs. The arrival of Sri Lankan migrants adds fuel to the fire.

Showing Up

A sculptor preparing to open a new show must balance her creative life with the daily dramas of family and friends, in Kelly Reichardt's vibrant and captivatingly funny portrait of art and craft.

Tori and Lokita

Eleven-year-old Tori and 16-year-old Lokita are vulnerable African migrants, trying to make their way In contemporary Belgium, but their already precarious circumstances grow more complicated when the government refuses to give Lokita residence papers.

'The Bikeriders' Review

It’s all good and fun on the surface, there’s just not enough under the hood to make it into the beast it strives to be.

'Inside Out 2' Review

It's a delightful return to the world of emotions, bringing back the spark that we once consistently expected from Pixar.

'Tuesday' Review

It all comes together to make something more than the sum of its parts, which are all equally fascinating to pick apart and dissect.

Cannes Review Roundup

Another Cannes Film Festival is in the books, which means it’s time to decompress from all the commotion and gather my thoughts on everything I saw.

'Anora' Review

I’m pretty sure Greta Gerwig’s Cannes jury only needed the initial thirty seconds to declare this their Palme d’Or winner.
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