Archives for Festival Roundup

BAFF 2018: AMAZON HOT BOX Blends Every Women-in-Prison Movie Ever

“An American college student named Penny is erroneously apprehended during a dissident round-up in the banana republic of Rattica. She is incarcerated into the island penal system overseen by Wardress Von Krupp who is constructing the world’s greatest information extractor. Crocodiles, religious zealots, psycho inmates and voodoo-based experiments block her every escape. Life is cheap and the jungle explodes in Amazon Hot Box.” Director James Bickert follows up his mad scientist/biker picture Frankenstein Created Bikers with the relatively straightforward women-in-prison homage Amazon Hot Box. The big deal about this movie is that it was evidently shot in secret, then unleashed
Read More

BAFF 2018: DEAD BY MIDNIGHT (11PM CENTRAL) is One Hell of a Midnight Movie

“It’s Halloween at WKIZ when the malicious Mistress of Midnight (Erin Brown) arrives to host her annual horror movie marathon ‘Dead by Midnight’. When the WKIZ staff begins disappearing only to turn up in the increasingly darker films, it’s up to line producer Candice Spelling (Hannah Fierman) to stop the Mistress of Midnight before her final and most diabolical film goes to air.” There’s really no better film to screen at midnight than a horror anthology, is there? It keeps the usually raucous audience on their toes, and by presenting a series of stories with a wraparound means that everyone
Read More

Festival Roundup: ASH IS PUREST WHITE (2018, dir. Jia Zhangke)

This series highlights films that have played and will be playing at various international film festivals, from Berlinale in Germany or Locarno in Switzerland to Toronto International Film Festival or New York Film Festival. The latest film under discussion premiered in competition at Cannes earlier this year. It recently screened at TIFF and will also feature in NYFF’s line-up, playing on October 1st and 10th respectively. For quite some time, Jia Zhangke has been regarded as one of China’s—and indeed the world’s—premier filmmakers. This has been the case from the earliest days in his career, during which his debut feature
Read More

Festival Roundup: DEAD SOULS (2018, dir. Wang Bing)

This series will highlight films that have played and will be playing at various international film festivals, from Berlinale in Germany or Locarno in Switzerland to Toronto International Film Festival or New York Film Festival. The latest film under discussion premiered at Cannes and screened recently at TIFF. There are plans for release in US through Grasshopper Films. Chinese filmmaker Wang Bing is known primarily as a documentarian who operates frequently with a long form verité style. The most famous of his films is his 9-hour long debut, Tie Xi Qu: West of the Tracks (2002), a presentation of and immersion
Read More

PUFF 3: THE WITCH IN THE WINDOW

Liam: The Philadelphia Unnamed Film Festival just finished its third year of presenting the latest in genre film to an eager audience in Center City Philly. Started in 2016 by Madeleine Koestner and Alex Gardner, PUFF seeks to fill the perceived void left by the end of the always amazing Danger After Dark series at Philadelphia Film Festival. Now, this is the first year Cinepunx, and by extension I, have made the effort to cover this fest, and I admit I went in skeptical. There have been many folks laboring away in Philly trying to represent genre film exhibition, as
Read More

Festival Round-Up: TOO LATE TO DIE YOUNG (2018, dir. Dominga Sotomayor)

This series highlights films that have played and will be playing at film festivals around the world, from Berlinale in Germany or Venice International Film Festival in Italy to Toronto International Film Festival in Canada or New York Film Festival in the USA. The latest film I am turning my attention to saw its director win the Leopard for Best Direction at Locarno and debuts in Canada at TIFF on September 12 and the US at NYFF on September 29 and 30. Chile’s rising directorial talent Dominga Sotomayor Castillo is a filmmaker who, from the earliest days in her career, has
Read More

Festival Round-up: SHOPLIFTERS (2018, dir. Hirokazu Kore-eda)

This series will highlight films that have played and will be playing at various international film festivals, from Berlinale in Germany or Locarno in Switzerland to Toronto International Film Festival or New York Film Festival. The second film I will be looking at won this year’s Palme d’Or at Cannes and debuts in Canada and the US on September 7th and October 6th respectively, followed by a broad theatrical release in the US on November 23rd. Since besting serious competition from the likes of Ash is Purest White (dir. Jia Zhangke), The Image Book (dir. Jean-Luc Godard), and Everybody Knows
Read More

Festival Roundup: AN ELEPHANT SITTING STILL (2018, dir. Hu Bo)

This series will highlight films that have played and will be playing at various international film festivals, from Berlinale in Germany or Locarno in Switzerland to Toronto International Film Festival or New York Film Festival. The first film under discussion makes had its US premiere at New Directors/New Films in April and has its Canadian premiere at TIFF next month. Cormac McCarthy wrote of a “diverging equity” between experiences of beauty and pain in the world and the notion seems to have become one of some explanatory power for Hu Bo. With McCarthy, he appeared to concur that in history’s
Read More