It was wise to wait two years to release September 11, a collection of eleven shorts, each eleven minutes, nine seconds and one frame in length. Even now, it's hard to imagine the viewer whose gut will remain unwrenched. Emphasizing the global impact of the event before the retaliatory bombs began falling, these films were made by an international group of filmmakers, including Claude Lelouch (France), Danis Tanovic (Bosnia), Samira Makhmalbaf (Iran), Youssef Chahine (Egypt). Most are intimate tales, like Sean Penn's magic-realist portrait of a grieving widower, played by Ernest Borgnine, or Mira Nair's fact-based account of a missing Muslim initially tarred as a terrorist and then buried a hero. Some even find room for whimsy: Idrissa Ouedraogo offers us a group of young West African boys determined to capture Osama bin Laden by themselves. But staged drama pales in the face of Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu's mostly black screen, backed with actual audio from the news that day and interspersed with the occasional real falling body. Starting Friday, November 28, at the Starz FilmCenter at the Tivoli, 900 Auraria Parkway; for showtimes, call 303-820-3456 or log on to www.starzfilmcenter.com.
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