Two films highlight international studies series

Two upcoming films are part of the Shippensburg University International Studies Program’s 14th annual film series. The theme of this year’s series is "Pot, Penicillin and the Pill: A Global View of Drugs."

The 2004 film "Maria Full of Grace," about a Columbian teenager who gets lured into smuggling heroin to the United States, will be shown at 6:30 p.m. April 17 in Dauphin Humanities Center Room 051. The showing is free.

The film won the Audience Award at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival. The title character, Maria Alvarez, wants to quit her job at a flower plantation in Bogotá, but her large family depends on her meager salary. One day, Maria meets Franklin, who offers her a chance to make money and travel; the opportunity, however, involves her acting as a drug mule and smuggling heroin into the United States.

The 2005 Academy Award-winning drama "The Constant Gardener," starring Ralph Fiennes and Rachel Weisz, will be shown at 6:30 p.m. May 1 in Dauphin Humanities Center Room 051. The showing is free.

Set in Kenya, "The Constant Gardener" was nominated for four Oscars, with Weisz winning for best supporting actress. It is based on a novel by John Le Carré. Fiennes plays Justin Quayle, a British diplomat whose wife, Tessa (Weisz), a social justice activist, is murdered. Justin is determined to find her killer, but soon runs up against a corporation that is using Kenyans to test a tuberculosis drug with known harmful side effects, with no regard for their subjects’ well-being.

For more information about either film or the international studies major, contact Dr. Jonathan Skaff at 477-1907 or