Submitted by ub on Sat, 09/24/2011 - 01:10

The Central Park Film Festival and the New York International Latino Film Festival kick off this month.

The 9th Annual Central Park Film Festival takes place at Rumsey Playfield. Screenings are free and guests are allowed to bring their own food. Films start at 8pm; gates open at 6:30pm at the Mineral Springs, just north of the Sheep Meadow, mid-park at 69th Street.

Tuesday, August 23: El Cantante, a story about the creator of the salsa movement, Hector Lavoe (Marc Anthony), and how he brought the phenomenon to the United States.

Wednesday, August 24: Bird, the story about legendary jazz musician, Charlie “Bird” Parker (Forest Whitaker), and his troubled life and career.

Thursday, August 25: Dreamgirls, the Oscar Award-winning musical drama about a trio of African American female singers – played by Beyoncé Knowles, Jennifer Hudson and Anika Noni Rose – trying to get their big break in the early 1960s.

Friday, August 26: Shine a Light, a documentary about the 1960s iconic rock group, The Rolling Stones.

Saturday, August 27: Viewers’ Choice. Festival attendees can vote for either Coal Miner’s Daughter, the biography of the legendary country singer Loretta Lynn (Sissy Spacek), or A Star is Born, a story of a young woman (Barbara Streisand), who breaks into show business and falls in love with a has-been rock star (Kris Kristofferson).

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Also taking place in August is the New York International Latino Film Festival. This year’s festival showcases films by and for the Latino community. Presented by HBO and running from August 15-21, this year’s wide selection features documentaries and international as well as domestic world premieres. For more information: