59th AAFF Features in Competition


This year the 59th Ann Arbor Film Festival is presenting eleven features in competition. They are available for on-demand viewing from March 23 until March 31. Get your tickets and check them out below.


Al Largo

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Filmmaker Names: Anna Marziano

Location of Production: Padoua, Italy / Berlin, Germany

Year of Completion: 2020

Runtime: 61

North American Premiere


Immersing us in a sea of words and images, Al Largo brings us into contact with the experience of suffering. Dissolving the polarity between egoism and altruism, taking care becomes a gesture which alone seems to resist in front of the excessive power of life.


A Machine to Live In

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Filmmaker Names: Yoni Goldstein, Meredith Zielke, Sebastian Alvarez, Andrew Benz

Location of Production: Brasilia, Brazil

Year of Completion: 2020

Runtime: 120


A hive-like consciousness scans a space-age metropolis: an unstable landscape of mystical architecture and oneiric technology emerges. From this cosmic dream, the specter of totalitarianism takes form. A Machine to Live In is a sci-fi documentary about the utopian imaginary, set in the Brazilian hinterlands.


The Annotated Field Guide of Ulysses S. Grant

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Filmmaker Names: Jim Finn

Location of Production: United States

Year of Completion: 2020

Runtime: 61


For four years in the 1860s, half of the United States was held hostage by an unrecognized white supremacist republic. Shot on 16mm in national military parks, swamps, forests, and the suburban sprawl across the former battlefields, the film follows General Grant’s path liberating the southern United States. Part travelogue, part essay film, part landscape documentary, it moves from the Texas-Louisiana border to a prison island off the coast of New England. But instead of relying on actors, vintage photos, and the sounds of bullets and explosions, the battles are illustrated with the paper reenactments of hex-and-counter wargames and bubblegum cards from the hobbyist gamer subcultures that have sprung up around the Civil War. The sound and music are inspired by 1970s crime films to celebrate the destruction of the Confederacy with the synth jams they deserve.


Instructions for Survival

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Filmmaker Names: Yana Ugrekhelidze

Location of Production: North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany

Year of Completion: 2021

Runtime: 72

World Premiere


Alexandre is a transgender person who has lived with his girlfriend Marie for more than seven years. Because of the mark “female” in his passport and his trans identity, Alexandre cannot find a job and has to lead a secret life. The violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity brings the couple to the decision to leave their homeland. To afford this exodus, Marie signs a contract to be a surrogate mother.


The Inheritance

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Filmmaker Names: Ephraim Asili

Location of Production: Troy, New York / Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Year of Completion: 2020

Runtime: 100


Ephraim Asi