Varsity 4 Sunday, April 15, 2018 - 09:40 AM  add this block to your calendar
Fort Maria
Fort Maria
Narrative Feature
88 minutes
Director(s): Thom Southerland & S. Cagney Gentry
World Premiere 

Maria is a Bulgarian immigrant living in Kentucky with her adopted daughter Meredith. While Meredith is out of town connecting with her biological, African-American aunt, Violet, Maria’s extreme insecurities are triggered by the death of Meredith’s old dog in the garage. Suddenly, she can barely step outside, even to bury the dog. She’s forced to accept the help of her neighbor, Clara, who has issues of her own. The stories of these four women are interwoven in powerful and surprising ways, full of essential human moments and authentic considerations of race, culture, love, and what truly makes up a family. Katerina Stoykova (Proud Citizen–AIFF2015) gives a luminous performance in this black and white, documentary-style narrative film. Subtitles 
Directors’ Statement

Fort Maria is an unscripted filmic experiment that takes on a spontaneous, organic life of its own, true to the messiness and tangential humor of real life. As co-directors, we combined our skills to tell a simple yet fascinating story about the interconnectedness of four very different women in the American South—a milieu rarely depicted with nuance on screen—with characters who defy the typical Southern movie stereotypes. The genesis of the film came from from Thom’s own experience with agoraphobia as well as a desire to make another film with Katerina, who is able to infuse a vulnerable humanity into moments both simple and complex.