The Groove is Not Trivial - Mill Valley Film Festival
The Groove is Not Trivial crew in Tarskavig, Scotland. Photo: Tommie Dell Smith.

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There’s many ways to slice and dice the entries in any given film festival. Categorizing and short-listing can typically help us navigate hundreds of choices…

By country. Genre. Type. Length. Film/digital. Awards. And on and on.

Another is to highlight connections to local filmmakers.

In this case, there are 5 films in the upcoming Mill Valley Film Festival (MVFF) with a connection of some kind to wine country; that being defined in this case as the region just north of San Francisco including Sonoma and Napa.

Being a fan of wine country, and all the interesting personalities that call the place home (and work), every year I like to skim the catalog and see if any films are about wine itself, are shot on location in the area, or have a filmmaker connection. This year MVFF organizers saved us some time and identified films in the 39th edition of the festival with some sort of “North Bay interest” which would include Sonoma and Napa.

Mill Valley Film Festival (MVFF) News, Reviews, Headlines, Videos

So here we go, 5 MVFF films with a connection to wine country.

MVFF opens in only a few weeks. Stark Insider hopes to see you out and about in Mill Valley!

San Francisco Arts & Culture news, stories, videos5 MVFF Films with a Connection to Wine Country


Documentary Short
Director Will Agee
Napa Valley’s growing migrant farm worker population presents challenges. But when a community comes together, great things can be accomplished.
Director Will Agee is a Bay Area native is based out of Saint Helena


Green is Gold - Mill Valley Film Festival

Narrative Feature
Director Ryon Baxter
Set against the world of cannabis, this coming-of-age-story focuses on two young brothers forced to fend for themselves in the gorgeous green hills of Northern California.
Director Ryon Baxter lives in Sonoma


The Groove is Not Trivial - Mill Valley Film Festival
The Groove is Not Trivial crew in Tarskavig, Scotland. Photo: Tommie Dell Smith.

Documentary Feature
Director Tommie Dell Smith
A film about Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser, the artists around him, and the power of traditional music to change people’s lives. This World premiere will be accompanied by a live performance by Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas as part of MVFF Music at the Sweetwater Music Hall.
Director Tommie Dell Smith lives in Cloverdale in Sonoma County


Paris Can Wait - Mill Valley Film Festival

Narrative Feature
Director Eleanor Coppola

Eleanor Coppola
Eleanor Coppola

A seemingly innocent offer of a ride from Cannes to Paris evolves into a flirtatious road trip as a playfully rakish bachelor (Arnaud Viard) woos the alternately amused and vexed wife (a luminous Diane Lane) of a movie producer friend. Eleanor Coppola’s effervescent first feature celebrates transitory romance and the glories of France.
Director Eleanor Coppola lives in the Napa Valley


Documentary Short
Director Joshua Dylan Mellars
A Buenos Aires resident revisits the prison where he was “detained” 40 years ago during the Argentine military dictatorship.
Director Joshua Dylan Mellars grew up in Marin and Sonoma County

Source: Mill Valley Film Festival

Clinton Stark
Clinton shoots videos for Stark Insider. San Francisco Bay Area arts, Ingmar Bergman and French New Wave, and chasing the perfect home espresso shot 25 seconds at a time (and failing). Peloton: ClintTheMint. Camera: Video Gear