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Movies in the Rain—Portland International Film Fest

Every year, tens of thousands of locals and visitors interrupt their hibernation for a mid-winter trip to the movies. Over 100 movies, not to be exact. It's the first week in February and the days don't seem to be getting any longer, just wetter. Why not spend a week in the warm, dark recesses of a movie theater featuring work from all over the planet? Why wouldn't PDX not have a world-class film festival? A center for cinema is something we think we are. Take that, LA and Vancouver, BC. It's hard being the middle child.

The festivals truly get better each year. The producers go to great lengths attracting fresh, novel approaches to film from more than 70 countries. A film connoisseur's dream sequence. In 2012, twenty foreign film premieres in PDX were submitted for best foreign film Oscar nominations. We had 25 films from new directors screened during the week-long cavalcade. All showing up in the dead of winter to shed some projector light on the state of filmmaking worldwide.

Even if you're not the world's foremost film freak, you could catch a couple of showings in between beers at any of our 60 or so breweries. Or bring your boards and make some turns up on Mt. Hood in 10+ feet of white. But do come.

Besides the screenings, there are always sideshows with producers, writers, directors, cinematographers—all happy to talk about their craft. They were all very polite the last time I stopped in for a listen. Don't forget popcorn.

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