Welcome to the Larry411.com Guest Columnists! April 27, 2013
In my travels to the best film festivals in…
The 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival celebrates its 20th anniversary from June 11-19 at L.A. LIVE in downtown Los Angeles. One of the things which makes this festival unique is that it's sponsored by Film Independent, the same organization responsible for the "Oscars" for indies -- the Spirit Awards.
As someone whose life revolves around indies, it's been truly exciting to attend a festival every year which is run by the same folks who put on the ceremony that honors these movies, as it always has a schedule second-to-none for fans of independent film -- or simply great cinema. Plus there are always celebrity guests galore as the event is within a stone's throw of Hollywood.
The Opening Night Film, previously announced, will be the North American premiere of Bong Joon-ho’s Snowpiercer. Today the festival revealed that this year's Closing Night Film will be Clint Eastwood's Jersey Boys.
"We’ve got an amazing line-up for our 20th anniversary: starting with a bang with Bong and ending with a musical celebration from Clint Eastwood," said Artistic Director David Ansen. "It’s exciting to see Eastwood still tackling new forms. His deft, rousing translation of ‘Jersey Boys’ from stage to screen is further confirmation of his amazing, ageless talent."
"Los Angeles has nurtured the collective hopes and dreams of generations," said Festival Director Stephanie Allain. "This year in honor of our 20th anniversary, we’re putting the spotlight on films, conversations and performances inspired by the spirit of L.A. Many events are One Night Only so come out and celebrate!"
High profile Gala Screenings include Ira Sachs’ Love Is Strange, starring John Lithgow and Alfred Molina, Justin Simien’s Dear White People, and Hossein Amini’s The Two Faces of January, featuring Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Dunst, and Oscar Isaac.
This year's titles were selected from 5,952 submissions (compared to 5,428 last year) including 35 World, International, North American, and US premieres. 17 of the premieres are in the Narrative and Documentary Competition sections. Nine of the World Premieres are in the inaugural LA Muse section.
The 20th LAFF boasts close to 200 feature films, shorts, and music videos representing 40 countries. Passes and packages are on sale now to the general public, with discounted prices for Film Independent members. General admission tickets to individual films are also on sale now. In addition to screenings and events, Festival passes provide access to a series of networking receptions and entry to the Festival Lounge, where Festival pass holders can interact with Festival filmmakers and professionals in the film community. You can also contact the Ticket Office for passes, tickets and event information by phone at 866.FILM.FEST (866.345.6337). For more details visit lafilmfest.com and follow @LAFilmFest.
Here is the complete lineup for the 20th Los Angeles Film Festival. For full synopses, cast, and credits see the 2014 LAFF Addendum (PDF)
Narrative Competition (9): The Narrative Competition is comprised of films made by talented emerging filmmakers that compete for the Filmmaker Award. The winner is determined by a panel of jurors, and films in this section are also eligible for the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature or Best International Feature.
10 Minutes, Dir. Lee Yong-Seung, South Korea. North American Premiere.
Comet, Dir. Sam Esmail, USA. World Premiere.
Lake Los Angeles, Dir. Mike Ott, USA. World Premiere.
Man From Reno, Dir. Dave Boyle, USA. World Premiere.
Recommended By Enrique, Dir. Rania Attieh, Daniel Garcia, USA/Argentina/France. World Premiere.
Runoff, Dir. Kimberly Levin, USA. World Premiere.
Someone You Love, Dir. Pernille Fischer Christensen, Denmark. North American Premiere.
Uncertain Terms, Dir. Nathan Silver, USA. World Premiere.
The Young Kieslowski, Dir. Kerem Sanga, USA. World Premiere.
Documentary Competition (8): The Documentary Competition is comprised of films made by talented emerging documentary filmmakers that compete for the Documentary Award. The winner is determined by a panel of jurors, and films in this section are also eligible for the Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature or Best International Feature.
Billy Mize and the Bakersfield Sound, Dir. William J. Saunders, USA. World Premiere.
The Life and Mind of Mark DeFriest, Dir. Gabriel London, USA/Canada. US Premiere.
Meet the Patels, Dirs. Geeta V. Patel, Ravi V. Patel, USA/India. US Premiere.
My Name Is Salt, Dir. Farida Pacha, Switzerland/India. North American Premiere.
Out in the Night, Dir. blair dorosh-walther, USA. World Premiere.
Sound of Redemption: The Frank Morgan Story, Dir. N.C. Heikin, USA. World Premiere.
Stray Dog, Dir. Debra Granik, USA. World Premiere.
Walking Under Water, Dir. Eliza Kubarska, Poland/Germany/UK. US Premiere.
LA Muse (11) Programmed by Film Independent at LACMA curator Elvis Mitchell and artist/scholar Roya Rastegar, the LA Muse section is comprised of films made by talented emerging filmmakers that are set, shot or inspired by Los Angeles. Select films in this section are eligible for Audience Awards for Best LA Muse Feature, Best Narrative Feature, Best Documentary Feature or Best International Feature.
Dreams are Colder than Death, Dirs. Arthur Jafa, Kahlil Joseph, USA. World Premiere.
Eat With Me, Dir. David Au, USA. World Premiere.
Echo Park, Dir. Amanda Marsalis, USA. World Premiere.
The Ever After, Dir. Mark Webber, USA/Australia. World Premiere.
Holbrook/Twain: An American Odyssey, Dir. Scott Teems, USA. Sneak Peek.
Inner Demons, Dir. Seth Grossman, USA. World Premiere.
Los Ángeles, Dir. Damian John Harper, Mexico/Germany. International Premiere.
Nightingale, Dir. Elliott Lester, USA. World Premiere.
The Road Within, Dir. Gren Wells, USA. World Premiere.
Supremacy, Dir. Deon Taylor, USA. World Premiere.
Trouble Dolls, Dirs. Jess Weixler, Jennifer Prediger, USA. World Premiere
International Showcase (11): The International Showcase highlights innovative independent narrative and documentary features from outside of the United States. Films in this section are eligible for Audience Awards for Best International Feature, Best Narrative Feature or Best Documentary Feature.
Club Sandwich, Dir. Fernando Eimbcke, Mexico.
The Great Museum, Dir. Johannes Holzhausen, Austria.
Han Gong-Ju, Dir. Lee Sujin, South Korea.
Joy of Man’s Desiring, Dir. Denis Coté, Canada. US Premiere.
The Kidnapping of Michel Houellebecq, Dir. Guillaume Nicloux, France.
The Liberator, Dir. Alberto Arvelo, Venezuela/Spain.
Natural Sciences, Dir. Matías Lucchesi, Argentina/France.
Of Horses and Men, Dir. Benedikt Erlingsson, Iceland/Germany.
Starred Up, Dir. David Mackenzie, Northern Ireland/UK.
Stream of Love, Dir. Àgnes Sòs, Hungary.
Violette, Dir. Martin Provost, France.
Summer Showcase (11): The Summer Showcase section offers an advanced look at this summer’s most talked about independent film releases and will include highlights from the festival circuit and premieres. Films in this section are eligible for Audience Awards for Best International Feature, Best Narrative Feature or Best Documentary Feature.
The Battered Bastards of Baseball, Dirs. Chapman Way, Maclain Way, USA.
Cut Bank, Dir. Matt Shakman, USA. World Premiere.
Evolution of a Criminal, Dir. Darius Clark Monroe, USA.
Frank, Dir. Lenny Abrahamson, Ireland/UK.
Harmontown, Dir. Neil Berkley, USA.
Jimi: All is By My Side, Dir. John Ridley, USA.
Land Ho!, Dirs. Martha Stephens, Aaron Katz, Iceland/USA.
Last Days in Vietnam, Dir. Rory Kennedy, USA.
The Last Time You Had Fun, Dir. Mo Perkins, USA. World Premiere.
The Overnighters, Dir. Jesse Moss, USA.
A Thousand Times Good Night, Dir. Erik Poppe, Ireland/Norway/Sweden.
Free Community Screenings (5): These films will be presented free to the public. New films in this section are eligible for Audience Awards for Best Narrative Feature or Best Documentary Feature.
Clueless, Dir. Amy Heckerling, USA – Pre-Festival Screening
La Bamba (1987), Dir. Luis Valdez, USA. – Dance-A-Long at Union Station
Limited Partnership, Dir. Thomas G. Miller, USA. – Project Involve Screening
I Am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story, Dir. Dave LaMattina, Chad Walker, USA. – Grand Performances Screening
Sherlock Jr. (1924)/Cops (1922), Dir. Buster Keaton, USA. – Grand Performances Screening
The Beyond (3): The Beyond offers films that dare to be different. Films in this section are eligible for Audience Awards for Best International Feature, Best Narrative Feature or Best Documentary Feature.
Giuseppe Makes a Movie, Dir. Adam Rifkin, USA. US Premiere.
Jossy’s, Dir. Yuichi Fukuda, Japan. International Premiere.
The Well, Dir. Tom Hammock, USA. World Premiere.
Friday (1995), Dir. F. Gary Gray, USA. – Ice Cube in Conversation
Repo Man (1984), Dir. Alex Cox, USA. – 30th Anniversary Screening
The Film That Got Away: The Film That Got Away is an ongoing series of outstanding recent films that haven’t yet screened locally, curated by members of the Los Angeles Film Critics Association
Caterpillar (2010), Dir. Koji Wakamatsu, Japan
Short Films (40): Shorts are shown before features and as part of four short film programs. With their diverse and complex content, these films shine brilliantly. Most short films, domestic and international, will compete for prizes in Narrative, Documentary and Animation/Experimental categories. The winner is determined by a panel of jurors. An Audience Award for Best Short Film is also presented.
Shorts Program 1-4
Future Filmmakers Showcase: High School Shorts (29): These two programs of shorts are made by high school students from around the world, featuring work by the next generation of filmmakers.
Interactive (9) An international selection of video game playthroughs with commentary by the gamer, the Let’s Plays highlighted here exhibit a range of independent games (horror, interactive fiction, playable character quests, minimalistic platformer) as well as a variety of gamer/commenter approaches (instructional, humorous, multi-player). Game developers and Let’s Play video creators will be in attendance for a Q&A.
Music Videos (51): The Music Video Showcase consists of three programs. I See Music: Exploring Beyoncé’s Visual Album is a simultaneous audio/visual experience, screening the non-linear short films that illustrate the songs on her most recent release, followed by an extended talk with the creators and directors of those videos, focusing on the artistry of the creation process and the tones and themes expressed throughout. Eclectic Mix 1 and 2 are visual mix tapes of this year’s best independent music videos with a few innovative major label artists thrown in for good measure. Music videos will compete for an Audience Award.
Eclectic Mix 1 – 2
I See Music: Exploring Beyoncé’s Visual Album
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In my travels to the best film festivals in…