FILMS GONE WILD: If you are a guy debating the Tim League Alamo Drafthouse problem, try starting by listening to what the women are saying first
I was wrong and I was wrong because it is so very easy to be wrong as a male in this arena. It is so incredibly easy to think of me first. It is beyond easy to not consider everything that vitally needs to be considered simply because I have a penis. It is a painful admission to make even as I seek to correct it and do better.
FILMS GONE WILD: The first person account of a bright young film journalist and DREAMer scared to death that Trump will kick him out of this country
Please help me fight for this chance. Help me fight to protect DACA by speaking out and calling your representatives. I promise you that DACA recipients don’t want a free ride. We’ve never asked for that, all we want is a chance to keep contributing to this country in every field, even film.
Those films are going to make the “Make America Great Again” crowd (which everyone knows is actually code for “Make America White Again”) stop for a moment and reflect and decide that they shouldn’t be tacitly saying, “We’re okay if you eliminate (read, “kill if you have to, but by all means force to leave the country”) all the blacks and Jews as long as we get those clean coal jobs back like you promised.”
FILM FESTIVAL NEWS: The Tallgrass International Film Festival’s 15th Anniversary edition is led by a pair of South African films, a focus on female documentarians, and honorees Rose McGowan and Larry Gross
The 15th Annual Tallgrass Film Festival presented by Consolidated Equities Trust (October 18-22) today announced the full schedule for this year’s edition with an impressive roster of Gala selections including; Quentin Krog’s FOR THE BIRDS (Opening Night Gala), Byron Davis’s HUNTING EMMA (Centerpiece Gala), and Lysa Heslov’s SERVED LIKE A GIRL (Closing Night Gala).
FILM FESTIVAL NEWS: The Louisiana Film Prize announces 20 finalists vying for a $50,000 check and the jurors that will judge them
“The Film Prize has never seen this amazingly high level of work from all of the filmmakers,” said Gregory Kallenberg, Founder and Executive Director of the Film Prize Foundation. “It’s immediate and tangible proof that everyone can see on the big screen of the talent, both local to Louisiana and from all over the country, that is continuing to grow and to film here in Louisiana.”
FILM FESTIVAL NEWS: The Austin Gay & Lesbian International Film Festival’s Closing Night red carpet featured a lot of BROTHERLY LOVE along with its celebration of BECKS
The Closing Night red carpet for the Austin Gay & Lesbian Film Festival featured the filmmaking teams behind BROTHERLY LOVE and SOMETHING LIKE SUMMER and a handful of other filmmakers in addition to the belles of that night’s Ball – the Co-Director of BECKS, Elizabeth Rohrbaugh and the woman that starred as the film’s title character, Lena Hall. Once again, everyone had a great time with the photos and the interviews and aGLIFF closed out their 30th edition of the fest with a lot of fun.
THEATRICAL REVIEWS: Matthew Vaughn’s KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE delivers all the things you expect from the genre: good guys, bad guys, car chases, fancy electronics, an evil plot to overcome, a hero trying to save a Princess, and a feisty Elton John.
The most fun part is actually an ongoing cameo by Sir Elton John that is delightfully sassy and several times made the guy sitting next to me cheer quietly (thanks, buddy, for being a good movie neighbor!).
aGLIFF 2017 REVIEWS: Josh Howard’s THE LAVENDER SCARE is a timely documentary that sheds lights on the so-called “Un-American Activities” gestapo against the LGBT community
With a clarion cry of rationalization, the phrase, “The pervert can be blackmailed!” was the passport to oppression used by everybody from the FBI to the Postmaster General’s office to root out, expose, and expel gay people from all sorts of government jobs. Howard introduces the audience to several victims of the gay purge: military men and women, scientists, clerks.
aGLIFF 2017 REVIEWS: Clyde Peterson’s TORREY PINES is a unique pastiche of lost youth and endless curiosity that you and your inner child need to see
And there is craftiness. Petersen is telling us something we all know, but don’t want to admit to ourselves: our pleasant memories are easily deconstructed into impactful trauma, and not even the warm fuzzies of crayons and construction paper can hide the truth from a person honest with themselves.
10 MOST RECENT FILMS WATCHED: aGLIFF films give way to big theatrical releases and a couple late 70s/early 80s gems
The Austin Gay & Lesbian International Film festival dominates this list, along with a couple cool, debate-inspiring films in the theater, and then a couple classics from the late 70s/early 80s.
THE GUEST COLUMN: Film preservationist Ariel Schudson on Teachable Moments: Alamo Drafthouse, Cinefamily & the Future of Repertory Cinema
Dudes, I’m calling you out. It’s time. It’s not brave for you to step forward and join us in talking about what’s actually going on. If anyone tells you you’re “brave” or thanks you, tells you how “amazing” you are for standing up, that’s straight up bullshit. You should have always been doing this. You just finally smelled what The Rock was cooking, ok? No back pats, no OMG YOU’RE SO AWESOME!
VOD REVIEWS: Chad Hartigan’s MORRIS FROM AMERICA has great performances from Craig Robinson and Markees Christmas, a lot of heart, and deserves a first or second look on VOD
The most endearing thing in this film is the relationship between Morris and his father, Curtis. The connection they have with one another is refreshing and intriguing, hooking in the viewer even from the opening sequence where they playfully banter about which one has better taste in hip hop. Curtis is patient with Morris as he fumbles through the many life transitions he is facing. They grow and learn together, both facing a different set of issues after their recent move.
VOD REVIEWS: Nathan Morlando’s MEAN DREAMS offers up a classic story of star-crossed young lovers with a swan song performance by Bill Paxton
MEAN DREAMS not only isn’t trying to reinvent the wheel, it revels in the trappings of its poor, farm country setting, story tropes, and the familiar character archetypes it puts forward. The film banks on the romantic dynamic between the two leads (Sophie Nelisse, and Josh Wiggins), as well as the villain role embodied by Paxton..
VOD REVIEWS: Justin Kurzel’s THE SNOWTOWN MURDERS is an under appreciated horror masterpiece waiting to be re-discovered on VOD
The reek of degradation is so impactful, it’s hard to wash away from the mind. And therein lies the true horror the film offers as well as its cinematic triumph. The murders take a back seat to the explorations of the utter raping of the psyche of a teenager we are subjected to. No amount of gore could make an audience more uneasy, seeking the exits than what The Snowtown Murders has conjured.
TEN BURNING QUESTIONS: Our interview with first-time director Cati Gonzalez opens a window in to the madness and method behind the jazz-improvisation of EKAJ
When I picked Mecca, I had already written about a guy with AIDS. It was rough for me because [actor Badd Idea] has AIDS. Every scene, I would pass it by him before [filming]. I’d ask, “Are you OK saying that?” Even though he was outspoken about [his disease]. So, it was rough. Jake grew up while we were making the movie. If I could do it again, I know [now] how I would do it [differently]. But I like challenges. I’m very extreme [when it comes to] challenges.
Perhaps the best breakout comedy movie from the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival is a Capra-esque gem called Nobody’s Watching. It’s a smartly-executed work which captures powerful and authentic emotions, whose laughs are not throwaway and cheap, but based in real sadness and approached with great reverence.
TEN (OKAY, EIGHT) BURNING QUESTIONS: Elina Psykou’s Tribeca Film Festival Award-winner, SON OF SOFIA
It was almost shocking to discover this gentle, cheery person with a disarmingly childlike smile was the same person who made such a dark and challenging movie. The contrast between who I encountered in a hotel lobby and what audiences will encounter with Son of Sofia only augments the sense of humanity both the film and filmmaker so strongly convey.
SHORTS AND TO THE POINT: Maja Aro’s HOODS hits the bullseye as the complete package in a cleverly conceived and created short film…that could be expanded into something more
It actually started as a very different script inspired by a video game. I wanted to write something with a badass female lead, then she evolved into this motorbike riding little red riding hood. I love the esthetic of dieselpunk, so the world was heavily influenced by that. It all kind of evolved from there. The world is big, and even though the short is just a little slice of an introduction to it, I didn’t want to feel half assed just because it was a short.
SHORTS AND TO THE POINT: Sarah Adams and Maggie Rieth Austin are a comedy duo to watch and laugh at as they take us for a bumpy ride in THE SERVICE ELEVATOR
But this particular version of that stuck in the elevator scenario gets an additional boost because it was written, developed, and stars two women who might as we’ll bring back vaudeville, they’ve got their “act” together so honed – Sarah Adams and Maggie Rieth Austin.
SHORTS AND TO THE POINT: Siena Pinney’s POSSIBILITY is a wonderfully crafted and delicate telling of a young couple facing the decision to have an abortion
Personally, I don’t think women should ever have to feel ashamed to talk about their abortion stories–it is an experience that so many of us share. But it’s also an experience that can be confusing, sad, heartbreaking, hopeful… I wanted to show that spectrum of emotions.