Film Festival

LAFF 2014: Man From Reno Film Festival

LAFF 2014: Man From Reno

The winner of the Los Angeles Film Festival’s Narrative Award went to a film I was lucky enough to catch after the festival. Dave Boyle (Daylight Savings, White on Rice) presents a suspenseful and intriguing mystery with his neo-noir The Man from Reno. An engaging thriller, the film’s mystery unfolds in intricate deliberation, and its Read More
LAFF 2014 Closing Night: Jersey Boys Film Festival

LAFF 2014 Closing Night: Jersey Boys

A little more on the biopic spectrum than a lavish stage-to-screen production as most cinematized musicals tend to be, Jersey Boys evokes the same nostalgia putting on a record of The Four Seasons would illicit but tends to lose steam between musical numbers. Clint Eastwood, as beloved as he is, shows his age somewhat in this Read More
LAFF 2014: Dear White People Film Festival

LAFF 2014: Dear White People

Before Wednesday’s Los Angeles Film Festival Gala Screening of Dear White People, director Justin Simien, along with exec-producer Stephanie Allain, told white members of the audience that they were absolutely “allowed to laugh”. An ominous sort of joke, but considering the deep satire contained within this Sundance favorite, it was a joke entirely in keeping Read More
LAFF 2014: Cut Bank Film Festival

LAFF 2014: Cut Bank

Discovering that director Matt Shakman has worked a lot in television, most recently on FX’s television adaptation of the Coen brothers’ film Fargo, came as no surprise after watching his first foray into filmmaking, Cut Bank. Walking the line between thriller and dark comedy, the film boasts an all-star cast who can’t completely make-up for some Read More
LAFF 2014: The Well Film Festival

LAFF 2014: The Well

Falling squarely within the Los Angeles Film Festival’s” The Beyond” category — which they describe as “daring to be different” — The Well is a post-apocalyptic film that tells a simple story convincingly, especially considering its director, Thomas S. Hammock, has up until now focused his career on production design. Taking place in a future world of water-depleted desperation, Read More
LAFF 2014: The Young Kieslowski Film Festival

LAFF 2014: The Young Kieslowski

Falling in a similar pattern as other teen-pregnancy type films, The Young Kieslowski is a one-sided tale of a young man’s perspective on being thrown into pending fatherhood. While much has been made of the female perspective on unexpected pregnancy, director Kerem Sanga, (who has one other feature under his belt, 2012′s Trigger Finger), attempts to effectively and Read More
LAFF 2014: They Came Together Film Festival

LAFF 2014: They Came Together

Those who understand and appreciate the humor of David Wain and Michael Showalter have no doubt been anticipating They Came Together, the first film the duo has worked on together since Wet Hot American Summer, their TV endeavors aside. (Fans will be happy to hear that in the Q&A following the premiere the duo said Read More
LAFF 2014: Libertador: The Liberator Film Festival

LAFF 2014: Libertador: The Liberator

As a vast majority of the world tuned in to the World Cup Sunday, I was treated to an equally lively South American production. Libertador, or The Liberator, is a large-scale saga portraying the early years and successful liberation campaign of Simón Bolívar. Known as the key player in Latin America’s quest for independence from the Read More
LAFF 2014: The Two Faces of January Film Festival

LAFF 2014: The Two Faces of January

The Los Angeles Film Festival continued its Gala screenings Tuesday with The Two Faces of January. First time director Hossein Amini has proven he understands the art of calculated and slow-building periodic drama as the screenwriter of subdued gems The Wings of the Dove and Jude. He’s even proven he can handle drama of a more fast-paced nature Read More