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Akron Racers, RNC, Bocce Among Highlights of 41st Cleveland International Film Festival

photo of A More Civil War
Cleveland-based Think Media will premiere both "A More Civil War" and "Burn the Ships" at CIFF41.

The Cleveland International Film Festival has released this year’s list of films, which includes a number of movies about Northeast Ohio.

The film fest will host the world premiere of “A More Civil War,” a documentary about the 2016 Republican National Convention which took place in Cleveland. The film is from Cleveland-based Think Media, which is also premiering “Burn the Ships” at the festival, chronicling the 2015 season of the Akron Racers women’s softball team.

Another world premiere is “Breaking Balls,” which goes behind the scenes of the annual Cleveland Cup of Bocce Championship, held at the Italian-American Club in Wickliffe.

The Cleveland International Film Festival started in 1977 with eight films. This year’s festival will screen more than 400 films, and runs March 29 through April 9th.  The entire schedule is available here.

The film fest will open with “California Typewriter,” a documentary on writers who prefer to use typewriters.  And the closing film will be “The Hero,” starring Sam Elliot and Nick Offerman.

In between, the film fest is hosting movies from around world, as well as 10 with Northeast Ohio roots.  The film fest’s Associate Director Patrick Shepard says a lot of people will likely be surprised by the documentary “Voices of the Hill,” which was mostly produced by Twinsburg High School students.

“It’s about Twinsburg Heights, which was an African-American enclave in Summit County.  And it’s quite the story: as somebody who grew up in Northeast Ohio, I was not even aware of this area.”

This year’s Cleveland International Film Fest will also see an expansion of the “Perspectives” virtual reality exhibit.

Kabir Bhatia is a senior reporter for Ideastream Public Media's arts & culture team.