In an effort to bridge the gap between Cuba and the United States, Micheal Moore’s 2010 Traverse City Film Festival includes a salute to Cuban films. The TCFF says you’ll be surprised at how original, funny, satirical, and, yes, controversial their films are, how they poke fun and criticize the way the Cuban government does things. Top filmmakers from Cuba will be in Traverse City for the festival, giving everyone a chance to learn how they make films in Cuba, what their cinemas are like and, here’s a little known fact: That they don’t have to get Fidel’s approval in order to make films.

Below is the line-up of the Cuban films that will be shown at the 2010 Traverse City Film Festival. CLICK HERE FOR THE COMPLETE LINE-UP OF THE 2010 TRAVERSE CITY FILM FESTIVAL

Dreaming in Blue
2008 | NR | 65 min.

Baseball isn’t only America’s national past time — it’s also Cuba’s.In this fun and hotly controversial doc, we follow the Havana-based team Industriales (the New York Yankees of Cuban baseball) as “The Blues” play out their season with an unfiltered glimpse behind the scenes, in the dugout, on the road and in the streets of Havana. Independently produced and directed by Cuban filmmaker Ian Padron, who interviews former and current stars as well as rabid fans, you will see why it took him years to overcome the politics to finally get this unique film in Cuban theaters. This delightful film is not just for sports fans. In Person: Director Ian Padron

Showtime: Saturday, July 31, 2010, noon, Old Town Playhouse    Buy Tickets Now!

Horn of Plenty
2008 | NC-17 | 107 min.

A sexy romp with a large cast of zany characters, this madcap comedic satire from director Juan Carlos Tabio about the power and allure of money stars Cuba’s most popular actor, Jorge Perugorria, as an over-educated factory worker in Yamaguey. In a small town where everyone seems to be part of the extended family of Castineiras (a surname as common as Smith in the U.S.), news of an huge inheritance for members of the Castineiras family throws the community into chaos, illuminating the ways in which Cuba is plagued by isolation, bureaucracy, poverty and class discrepancies. Mature audiences only. In Person: Jorge Perugorria

Showtime: Friday, July 30, 2010, 3 pm, Milliken Auditorium    Buy Tickets Now!

Strawberry and Chocolate
1994 | R | 108 min.

The only Cuban film to be nominated for an Oscar tells the story of a chance meeting between a gay intellectual dissident and a naïve party-line student at an outdoor Havana ice cream café in 1979 and their evolving relationship. There’s spying, intrigue, a flaky, man-hungry neighbor, desire, spirituality and something quite extraordinary that emerges from their timetogether in the confined quarters of Diego’s decaying Havana apartment. You won’t be finished with this film when you leave the theater. In Person: Lead Actor Jorge Perugorria

Showtime: Saturday, July 31, 2010, 6 pm, City Opera House    Buy Tickets Now!

Viva Cuba!
2005 | NR | 80 min.

A delicious and refreshing film treat, this magical coming-of-age road film offers a rare peek inside a Cuba we really never see. Grade school classmates Malu and Jorgito are inseparable, in spite of their parents’ conflicting ideologies and social status. When Malu’s mother decides to leave Cuba, the duo travels from Havana to the other end of the island to find Malu’s father before he signs the exit papers. This memorable family-friendly film features beautiful scenes of Havana and the Cuban countryside as the runaways make their way across post-revolution Cuba. In Person: Director Juan Carlos Cremata Malberti

Showtime: Thursday, July 29, 2010, noon, Old Town Playhouse    Buy Tickets Now!