The 2022 Santa Monica Film Festival showcases eight award-winning independent films from local and national filmmakers.

Presented by Wolk & Levine and co-hosted by Human Rights Watch the opening film is the new documentary FOR LOVE from director Matt Smiley (Highway of Tears) and narrated by Shania Twain. 

FOR LOVE is a film of resilience and resurgence. Colonization has led to many adverse impacts on the Indigenous population of Canada – most significantly on familial and societal structures. Due to colonial regimes, Indigenous children are vastly overrepresented in the child welfare system.

In 2018, the Minister of Indigenous Affairs deemed the issue “a humanitarian crisis.” 

Traveling across the country, Indigenous people tell their heartbreaking stories to reveal the atrocities inflicted by the Canadian child welfare system. The film shines a light on what is happening right now. It details the horrors of the past and reveals how Indigenous communities are taking back jurisdictional control of their children in order to ensure that their unique and diverse cultures are preserved for generations to come. 

This year Santa Monica Film Festival’s closing film is the world premiere of WING DAD the sophomoric feature film from director Lucas Astrom (Hard Plastic). Co-written by Astrom and Paige Feldman (INTERROBANG), WING DAD is a comedy feature about the anxiety of growing up, even as a 30-something, dealing with your parents, and running a business during a pandemic.

Attendees of Santa Monica Film Festival 2022 can experience a collection of high quality shorts, documentary and feature film premieres followed by moderated discussions with filmmakers and the audience from (1 to 9 p.m.) at Laemmle Monica Film Center (1332 2nd Street).

The 2022 edition of the Santa Monica Film Festival is both in-person and online.


1 p.m. For Love

3 p.m. Short Films

5 p.m. Savannah Haunting

7 p.m. Wing Dad


Screening Tickets $10

All Screening Pass $20



From Jan 15 – 31, Santa Monica Film Festival will showcase select films on the streaming platform XOLO ( A $5 monthly subscription to XOLO required and may be canceled anytime.

For tickets, passes and event schedule go to

Submitted by SMFF