It's a tough year to launch new ventures. Thankfully the ¡Viva Cinema! Latino Film Festival bypasses that logic, and in doing so — by bringing more than 40 Latino films and filmmakers together for one weekend — it increases the likelihood that Hartford-area South American, Caribbean Latin American businesses and neighborhoods will get a little boost in sales and happiness. That's a lot to ask of a film festival, or art in general, but you never know until you try. Head to Oscar Nominated Spanish film Chico & Rita (pictured) on Friday at 9 p.m. for a beautifully rendered story of a young pianist and a lovely singer in 1948 Cuba, set to a soundtrack by Cuban pianist and Grammy-winning composer Bebo Valdés as well as some jazz greats you might have heard of (Monk, Parker, Porter, Gillespie, Herman, Puente, and so on).
¡Viva Cinema! Latino Film Festival
Sept. 21-23, $7-$8 per film, weekend passes $40-$50, Mark Twain House & Museum, 351 Farmington Ave., Hartford, (860) 247-0998, marktwainhouse.org.