Friday, August 25, 2017


Family FaireLeap!  (2017)  PG  A young orphan named, Felicie (Elle Fanning), always dreamed of being a dancer. She and her best friend, Victor (Nat Wolf), escape from the orphanage and make their way to Pairs. Will Felicie be able to follow her dreams and dance at the Paris Opera Ballet?  The film combines beautiful and lavish animation with a storyline that any ballet fan will love. The dancing in this movie is stunning as the animators used footage of real Paris Opera Ballet dancers to make their film feel and look authentic. I love the soundtrack of this film with songs by Carly Rae Jepsen and Sia. Leap! is a movie that will inspire kids to become dancers with its message that you can succeed against all the odds with determination and hard work.  My Rating: Full Price   Leap! Facebook page
IndiefestIngrid Goes West  (2017)  R  An unhinged social media stalker (Aubrey Plaza) moves to LA and figures out a way to become part of an Instagram Star’s (Elizabeth Olsen) life. Not quite a comedy, more like a drama with a few light hearted moments, Ingrid Goes West works because Aubrey Plaza is a chameleon of an actress. You both pity her character at the same time that you are rooting for her against all the odds that she will find happiness. The film doesn't always work but those moments that do work are magical. There is great chemistry between Olsen and Plaza, making their almost instant friendship seem real, though you feel that both characters aren't genuine or telling the truth. The film covers a lot of ground in this day of instant gratification and celebrities that make their living endorsing products online. Aubrey Plaza makes this movie worth seeing and if you follow some of the 'Instagram stars' you just might find that you are unfollowing them after seeing this film.   My Rating: Full Price   Ingrid Goes West Webpage
IndiefestGood Time  (2017)  R  Connie (Robert Pattinson) and his brother, Nick (Benny Safdie), have money problems and decide to rob a bank. The bank job goes bad, and Nick is caught by police. Connie is on the run and wants to, somehow, get his brother out of prison.  Anchored by an unprecedented performance by Robert Pattinson, this is a gritty crime film about a bank robbery that goes bad very quickly. Pattinson, who has come far as an actor from those early Twilight days, gives a powerful and dynamic performance. I don't know if enough Academy Award voters will see this film, but I think he could be on some Indie and film critic awards lists at the end of the year. The cinematography is brilliantly executed and perfectly enhances the mood and feel of the movie. Good Time is an impressive film with a scintillating performance by Robert Pattinson.  My Rating: Full Price   Good Time Facebook page
IndiefestPatti Cake$  (2017)  R  Patricia Dombrowski (Danielle Macdonald), aka Killa P, aka Patti Cake$, dreams of being a rapper and being famous. She fights to achieve this unlikely quest in her downtrodden hometown in New Jersey.  Macdonald gives an impressive performance as the young woman who dreams big and is willing to do just about anything to achieve her goals. I'm not a big rap fan, but her songs are outstanding, and Macdonald delivers them with a gusto that is fun and compelling. The final song is one of the best performances of the year in film. Patti Cake$ is a fun experience that will have you rooting for her to succeed.  My Rating:  Full Price   Patti Cake$ website
IndiefestLetters from Baghdad  (2016)  This documentary tells the story of Gertrude Lowthian Bell, sometimes called the ‘female’ Lawrence of Arabia.  She traveled all over the Middle East before, during and after World War I, often going where she was the only female. The Middle East, especially Baghdad, fascinates Bell as she gathers information for the British government. This documentary uses Bell's letters and communiqu├ęs to give us her voice as narrated by Tilda Swinton. Actors are used on-camera to portray people like T. E. Lawrence to help chronicle the story. The film uses archival pictures and movies from the period to give us the feel of what it was like to live in that part of the world during that time. Bell was an intriguing woman and an interesting subject for a film, which this movie brings to life.  My Rating: Full Price   Letters from Baghdad website
IndiefestRumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World  (2017)  Packed with compelling concert footage, this documentary explores how the Native American influence helped shape music history, despite attempts to ban, censor and erase Indian culture in the United States. This is an engrossing film about how much Native Americans have influenced rock and roll. From the legendary guitarist Link Wray to The Band's Robbie Robertson, artists who are Native Americans have shaped rock. The film explores the roots of rock looking at artists like Mildred Bailey, a Native American singer who was the first woman to have her own radio show. The film showcases guitarist Jessie Ed Davis, who made legendary music with Taj Mahal in the 60s.  It's a subject that I didn't know much about, but now I'll look at these rockers in a different, more informed light.    My Rating:  I Would Pay to See it Again   Rumble website
Indiefest:    Gook  (2017)  Set in  community near South Central L.A. on April 29, 1992, two brothers, Eli (Justin Chon) and Daniel (David So) run a struggling shoe store. The two brothers form an unlikely friendship with Kamilla (Simone Baker), an eleven year—old girl who has cut school, again. It’s the day of the Rodney King verdict, and soon the three will have to decide to fight for their store or flee. Your pulling for the three main characters right from the start as writer/director/actor Justin Chon has created a movie that may seem far away from us but is instantly relatable. The use of black and white, along with hand held cameras allows us to feel like we are apart of this world. We get to experience what it was like to live in a world that was falling apart in front of the people that lived in that area and this film delivers that for all the emotional impact for the full muster.  My Rating:  Full Price   Gook Website
Forgotten FilmHard Eight  (1996)  Professional gambler Sydney (Phillip Baker Hall) takes John (John C. Reilly), a down-on-his-luck young man under his wing and teaches him how to gamble. John flourishes until he falls for a cocktail waitress named, Clementine (Gwyneth Paltrow). The reason to watch this film is that it is filled with interesting characters and brilliant dialogue. The plot has a nice twist that you don't see coming, and you actually believe that these characters live and breathe gambling.    My Rating: Full Price   Hard Eight Info

Weird Credits:  From the credits of Leap!: French Dubbing Artist

Coming Soon to a Theatre Near YouThe LEGO Ninjago Movie  (2017)  PG  By day six, young friends are just trying to survive high school, but, at night, they change into ninjas who have been given the task of defending their island home from evil. I loved the LEGO Movie and enjoyed the LEGO Batman Movie, so I am looking forward to this one.   The LEGO Ninjago Movie website
Until Next Time!

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