Adk. Film Fest shows ‘Miracle’ at Cool Arena, plus: A star of ‘Princess Bride’

By Cathy DeDe, Chronicle Managing Editor

The second annual Adirondack Film Festival will kick off Thursday, Oct. 19, with a free screening of 2004’s Miracle — about the 1980 U.S. hockey victory in Lake Placid over the Soviet Union — on the jumbotron scoreboard at Cool Insuring Arena (formerly Glens Falls Civic Center).

The festival headlining event is a 30th anniversary screening of cult favorite The Princess Bride, with guest Chris Sarandon, who played Prince Humperdinck.

“It’s pretty exciting,” says Chad Rabinovitz, the producing artistic director of the Adirondack Theatre Festival, which organizes the film fest.

He said the Miracle screening is part of a larger community event, all free.

It starts at 5 p.m. with an Adirondack Youth Hockey League exhibition game and a meet-and-greet with four Adirondack Thunder players and Coach Brad Tapper, a Q&A with the coach moderated by Thunder announcer Evan Pivnick, and then movie screening. The Jumbotron will be lowered to the ice for the movie viewing.

The screening will be followed by a pre-festival party at the Queensbury Hotel for VIP pass holders and filmmakers.

The Festival runs for two days, Friday and Saturday, Oct. 20-21, in 7 theaters.

They’ve added the Hyde Collection, where a new movie called Loving Vincent will be shown two times in the 140-seat Helen Froehlich Auditorium.

“It’s the world’s first feature-length entirely oil-painted animated film,” Mr. Rabinovitz says. “It’s about Vincent Van Gogh. It’s really huge, and it’s perfect for the Hyde.” He adds, “You can’t see this in the movies. It’s not even out yet.”

The Hyde will have its own Van Gogh on display, and one of the movie’s artists will attend the screenings. Festival pass holders will receive free Hyde admission to the Hyde during the weekend.

Movies will also be screened and events held at the Wood Theater, Crandall Public Library, the two theaters at 190 Grille and Cinema, and the Queensbury Hotel.

Headlining movies include:

  • Good Time, “a major get for us,” says Mr. Rabinovitz. It’s new from the studio that won an Oscar for the movie Moonlight last year. It features Robert Pattinson as a botched bank robber.
  • The Trip to Spain. Michael Winterbottom’s movie follows Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon as they sample restaurants and hotels of the Spanish coastline.
  • Lost in Paris, “a physical, sweet comedy,” Mr. Rabinovitz says, about a Canadian librarian in search of her aged aunt.
  • The Hero, featuring Sam Elliott as an aging Western singer and Laura Prepon as his estranged daughter.

Features include

  • Kedi, a documentary that follows five cats in Istanbul, to be shown with a pet adoption event in the Wood cabaret space.
  • Lemon, quirky movie about a director whose life falls apart when his blind girlfriend leaves him.
  • Getting Grace, about a young girl dying of cancer who crashes a funeral home to learn what happens there.
  • Dave Made a Maze, about a frustrated artist who creates an imaginary world in cardboard.
  • Band Aid, about a couple who take to writing songs that reflect their troubled marriage.
  • Free children’s animated series at Crandall Public Library on Saturday morning.

In all, they’ll have more than 70 films and short films this year, up from the 60-plus last year, Mr. Rabinovitz said. “And there’s still room to grow.”

Special events include a panel discussion with top screenwriters, still to be announced.

Also: A Friday night party with the filmmakers at Davidson’s Pub and Brewery, and Saturday night awards and closing party at 190 Grille and Cinema.

Passes: $30 to $75

Festival passes cost $30 for each day, $50 for both days, or $75 for the all-access VIP pass that includes all festival events, parties, and priority seating. There will not be a la carte tickets.

Mr. Rabinovitz said they’re buying upgraded screening equipment for several of the venues, and planning a special breakfast for filmmakers, particularly to pitch Glens Falls as a location for movie making.

Grants they had hoped to receive through the Downtown Revitalization Initiative did not come through. The event is funded entirely through ATF, with increased sponsorships and in-kind donations “a huge help,” Mr. Rabinovitz said.

Info: 518-798-1748, or online at

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