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Films al Fresco

Stars come out for Wine Country Film Festival

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Making the most of the picturesque Sonoma Valley, the Wine Country Film Festival returns for a 29th year of independent and major studio films sharing the spotlight in Glen Ellen and Kenwood, Sept. 16–21.

The festival offers a high-quality al fresco setting at Deerfield Ranch Winery to screen the biggest films of the week, complete with VIP tables and wine service. Under the stars, you can see the upcoming Nancy Meyers–directed comedy The Intern, which pairs Robert De Niro and Anne Hathaway. The twist? He's the intern and she's the boss. Spoiler alert: they become friends and both learn a little something about themselves along the way.

Also showing outdoors is the documentary Poet of Havana, which explores the life of Carlos Varela, a poet and songwriter instrumental in the Cuban revolution. Director Ron Chapman will be on hand for that showing, as will many other filmmakers and producers, as they introduce and discuss their works at several of the screenings.

Other festival highlights include Paulo Coelho's Best Story, the dramatic retelling of the Brazilian author's journey from troubled youth to influential figure, and the in-depth documentary Steve McQueen: The Man & Le Mans, which chronicles the actor's dream-turned-obsession of racecar driving.

Wine Country Film Festival runs from Wednesday, Sept. 16, through Monday, Sept. 21, in various locations throughout Glen Ellen and Kenwood. $25 and up. Residents of Sonoma and Napa counties are eligible for a local pass, good for all regular screenings. Info and schedule at wcff.us.

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