Sunday, January 15, 2017

Nightcap 1/15/17 Slamdance and Sundance start this week, The New York Science Fiction Film Festival starts Friday, I saw The Birth of a Nation and La La Land, plus Randi's links

How audiences will not be seeing MANIFESTO at Sundance

Once again it’s time to look west to Park City and Sundance and it’s small upstart sibling Slamdance. Once again the film world will be looking for the first great things of the film year.

Unlike years past where we’ve ended up backing into the festivals and giving you coverage once the fest started and things fell into our laps this year we’ve known for several weeks we would be covering it. This is thanks primarily to Joe Bendel asking if we wanted some of his coverage. I of course said yes, so we are going to actually have a man on the ground this year. Additionally since Joe’s coverage was arranged I managed to see a couple of films from Sundance and few more from Slamdance. I think I’ve seen more shorts than features but no matter what I’ve seen has been choice. (THE GOOD POST MAN at Sundance is recommended. The feature KURO and the short HELL FOLLOWS are musts at Slamdance).

Our coverage will start on Friday for both fests and run until they end. While I know some of what is being covered, I’m not sure what it will all be. Check back frequently starting Friday since there is going to be lots of good stuff going your way.

For information on Sundance go here
For information on Slamdance go here.

We previous reviewed SUPERGIRL which plays Slamdance when it premiered at DOC NYC
Here in New York this week brings THE NEW YORK SCIENCE FICTION FILM FESTIVAL. It's being put together by the same people who do the Philip K Dick Film Festival. It looks wonderful- I'm not sure how much I'll get to- it overlaps several other NYC events- but I'm going to give it a shot- and based on a reading of the program you should too.

For details and tickets go here.
The New York International Children's Film Festival announced the first 3 films this week YOUR NAME, MY LIFE AS A ZUCCHINI and REVOLTING RHYMES. The schedule hits this week as to tickets for members. Expect more details Tuesday or Wednesday as soon as info is released.
Continuing on with a Sundance theme- This week I finally saw THE BIRTH OF A NATION Nate Parker's telling of the Nat Turner Rebellion.

I am not going to review it. I'm not going get into any sort of discussion about it  other than to say I'm at a loss as to why a year ago at this time anyone seriously thought the film would have a serious chance at a Best Picture Oscar. That anyone would be so foolish to pick a film and claim it's the best film of the year when 11 months have yet to pass is insane- no one knows what a year will bring. Had it been held up as the first film to have a chance at the Oscar I wouldn't have blinked but the pundits had it all but winning.

Do I think that Parker's past derailed it? Honestly no. I think the film simply doesn't remotely live up to the hype. Claiming the Oscar race was all but done before February was an act of pure hubris. Personally I don't think the film is as good as almost any film currently in contention for the Best Picture Oscar.

I do think that Parker was done a serious disservice by his PR people who whipped up the frenzy surrounding the film and thus caused the film to spectacularly crash and burn in the minds of many. I think the film deserved a more reasonable presentation to the media and public.
I saw LA LA LAND Thursday- I will be running one of the former frequent On Further Review piece on Tuesday- but for now consider I am strongly of the opinion that if the film wins the Best Picture Oscar in five years everyone will be pondering why anyone thought that highly of the film
Randi's links

Cult TV Page at TV Ark
Voices in Our Heads
The Erasure of Islam from Rumi
Jane Austen's teenage writing
Karma Killings

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