Review: ‘VEGAS BABY’ shows the pricey gamble of IVF. Premieres tonight at 8pm!

From Executive Producer Morgan Spurlock

VEGAS BABY

U.S. Television Premiere Tuesday, June 27, at 8 P.M. on the New Season of

PBS’s AMERICA REFRAMED

Synopsis:

Some think an in vitro fertilization contest sounds crazy, but countless Americans desperate to start a family believe this social media experiment is their only hope. Oscar-nominated director Amanda Micheli’s provocative documentary follows several aspiring parents who desperately want to have a baby but are struggling with infertility and the high cost of treatments. They place themselves in the hands of a Las Vegas doctor who loved to gamble with læs mere and his annual contest, which offers a prize of a free round of in-vitro fertilization—with no guarantee of success. Contestants post their video entries on YouTube, counting on the votes of strangers to make their dreams of parenthood come true.

Despite the fact that nearly 1 in 6 couples worldwide are unable to naturally conceive and carry a baby to term, for fear of judgment or heartache or both, infertility stories are largely kept secret.  While exposing private pain online to win a contest is a brutal proposition, IVF is rarely covered by insurance in the U.S., so many infertile couples consider this a gamble worth taking. Through this controversial contest, VEGAS BABY navigates the complexities of America’s burgeoning fertility industry and unveils the class disparity within a topic that is often clouded by judgment and stereotypes. Micheli explores universal themes of desire and loss through her intimate portrait of the diverse individuals – from a devoutly Catholic Latino couple in Texas to a lesbian Lady Gaga Impersonator in New York – determined to have a baby against all odds.

100 whittled down to 10, talk about odds. Entering a contest for a free round of IVF, people put their most intimate struggles out into the world via Youtube and strangers control who moves onto the final round. Then a smaller panel of folks makes the decision and one lucky couple gets a no guarantees shot at a baby. The doc ultimately follows three finalists on their two-year journey with Dr. Sher and beyond. Infertility is not discussed often enough in our culture and when it is, there is a stigma surrounding its cost. It’s an emotional rollercoaster for the audience but an honest and important story to be told. Nothing is sugar coated in its presentation, nor should it be when matters of the heart are at stake. Dr. Sher and co are very honest about the fact that the business of infertility is a business. Emotions are difficult to set aside but the reality is clear. The industry is booming. Money does not equal success. Vegas Baby delves into the vulnerability of creating and sustaining life.

Director:                                                Amanda Micheli

Producers:                                            Serin Marshall

Executive Producers:                          Morgan Spurlock, Jeremy Chilnick

Editor:                                                    Greg O’Toole

Director of Photography:                   Amanda Micheli

Original Music By:                                Paul Brill

Run Time:                                              77 min

Release Date:                                       U.S. Television Premiere Tuesday, June 27, 2017 at 8 P.M.

Distributed by:                                     PBS’s AMERICA REFRAMED

Review: ‘CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR’ puts Nick Jonas in the hot seat.

CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR 

Careful what you wish for posterIt’s probably safe to say that every young man’s fantasy would be to have an affair with a hot older woman. The age gap alone could cause all sorts of problems… especially if she’s married. In Elizabeth Allen‘s new film, CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR, the innocent boy next door gets more than he bargains for.
carefulwhatyouwishfor nick jonasHome for the summer holiday, brainiac Doug becomes entangled with the stunningly beautiful wife of his next door neighbor. Lena is in need of a rescue from a her controlling husband Elliot. Once drawn into a circle of deceit by from both husband and wife, Doug is determined to get her out from under Elliot’s thumb, all while indulging in a hot and heavy affair. Things go wrong pretty quickly. What’s a good kid to do when bad things find him?CarefulWhatYouWishForIsabelLucasNick Jonas is one hot commodity. His on screen presence is so natural it’s a wonder it has taken this long for him to land such a leading role. Nick easily carries the entire film on his shoulders. He has true star potential. After his success in Ryan Murphy‘s Scream Queens, Nick is not slowing down in establishing himself in the acting industry. Forget the days of The Jonas Brothers sugar pop image. Those days are long gone. Isabel Lucas plays the haunted Lena. Massive sex appeal and an elegant air, you know there is more lurking behind those sad eyes. Dermot Mulroney is scary as Elliot. Usually a lead in a rom-com role, it was nice to see him stretch his very capable acting chops. Careful_what_you_wish_for_Dermot MulrooneyCareful What You Wish For is a surefire noir. A total departure from director Elizabeth Allen‘s previous films. It’s in the same league at another Starz Digital fave of mine, Bad Turn Worse. Just when you think you know what’s going on, there is a twist, keeping you interested. While some of the peeks of nudity may seem cliche, but they are very much in line with building up the tension in the plot. No one will be complaining when they see Jonas shirtless, that’s for damn sure. His audience will go nuts.


In Theaters and On Demand June 10, 2016

Starring: Nick Jonas (Goat, FOX’s “Scream Queens”)
Isabel Lucas (Transformers: Revenge of the FallenRed DawnImmortals)
Dermot Mulroney (My Best Friend’s Wedding, Showtime’s “Shameless”)
Graham Rogers (ABC’s “Quantico”, Love & Mercy) 
Paul Sorvino (Goodfellas, Romeo + Juliet)

Directed by: Elizabeth Allen (Ramona & Beezus, Aquamarine)

A steamy thriller set in a wealthy vacation community, CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR is a story of seduction,  deceit and betrayal. The summer before he leaves for college a young man (Nick Jonas in his debut lead performance) begins an affair with the beautiful wife (Isabel Lucas) of his powerful investment banker neighbor (Dermot Mulroney). The plot thickens when a suspicious death embroils the young lovers in scandal.

RT: 91 Minutes
MPAA rating: R

Review: There is no denying ‘THE TIME TO CHOOSE’ is Now.

abramorama logoPresents

TIME TO CHOOSE

Narrated by Oscar Isaac

time to choose posterI’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, anyone who thinks climate change is a manufactured idea, to me, is way off the rails. But, if by some chance you’re unconvinced, a new doc is resolved to change your mind. It seems like, with most threatening events in our lives, it is not until they directly affect our own families that we take the time to address them head on. It is much easier to sweep them under the rug or dismiss them as someone else’s problem. TIME TO CHOOSE may be your wake up call.

Chinese Masks

Academy Award®-Winning documentary filmmaker Charles Ferguson (Inside Job, No End in Sight) turns his lens to address worldwide climate change challenges
and solutions in his new film  TIME TO CHOOSE.


Featuring narration by award-winning actor Oscar Isaac, TIME TO CHOOSE leaves audiences understanding not only what is wrong, but what can to be done to fix this global threat.

Ferguson explores the comprehensive scope of the climate change crisis and examines the power of solutions already available. Through interviews with world-renowned entrepreneurs, innovators, thought leaders and brave individuals living on the front lines of   climate change, Ferguson takes an
In-depth look at the remarkable people working to save our planet.

Watershed chemicals in West Virginia

Watershed chemicals in West Virginia. I would not want my children playing in that stream.

The film is presented in a straightforward pitch, presented in parts, using testimonials from everyday people, scientists, innovators, CEOs, and get this… Facts. In the clip below, you can see what happens in West Virginia, in our continued destruction of beautiful mountains and in “cleaning” coal. Trust me when I say, there is nothing clean about it. We are poisoning ourselves in the process. It’s a vicious cycle, perpetuated by the lack of any other major industry existing in the area for folks to make a living from. Our people are killing themselves to not makes ends meet for their families. Something has to give. Take a look at this, and then picture Flint, Michigan in your backyard.

This is a money motivated issue, there is no doubt about it. The U.S. makes $35 Billion dollars in coal profits annually (That’s billion with a ‘”B”). $375 Billion in electricity profits. Why would those involved in sickening/ripping off Americans want to change anything? Here’s the thing, by 2017 renewable energy will cost less than fossil fuels. So, laugh all you want at electric cars, wind, and solar power. As for me, I’ll be laughing all the way to the bank, along with those who get it. Chinese MasksWith breathtaking cinematography, including awe-inspiring aerial shots, an uplifting score, and the sincere and heartfelt narration by Oscar Isaac, TIME TO CHOOSE is a winning film. With all of these elements combined, we have no excuse but to sit up and pay attention. We have a duty to protect our children. We cannot afford to ignore the reality we’ve created.  As Unilever CEO, Paul Polman says in the film, “It’s too late to be a pessimist.” Now is the TIME TO CHOOSE.

In Theaters June 3, 2016

One day screening events on June 15thThe filmmakers have have partnered
 with Gathr® Films to use Theatrical On Demand® to bring TIME TO CHOOSE 
to local theaters across the country over the Summer and into the Fall

RT: 97 Minutes
               

Original Music by The Misshapes

Featuring:

Dr. Jane Goodall 

Steven Chu (Former US Energy Secretary)

Michael Pollan (Author, In Defense of Food)

Michael Brune (President, The Sierra Club)

Kumi Naidoo (Executive Director, Greenpeace International)

Jerry Brown (Governor, California)

Lyndon Ryve (Co-Founder, CEO SolarCity)

Paul Polman (CEO, Unilever)

Amory Lovins (Chief Scientist, Rocky Mountain Institute)

Danny Kennedy (Co-Founder, Sungevity)

Peter Agnefjall (CEO, IKEA)

Eric Luo (CEO, Shunfeng)

Jesse Moore (Founder, M-Kopa)
 
& More

Make the choice, for more information please visit: http://www.timetochoose.com

Facebook: Facebook.com/TimeToChooseFilm
Twitter: @Time2ChooseFilm
Instagram: TimeToChooseFilm
#TimeToChoose 

Liz’s Review: ‘The Little Death’ delivers some sexy education.

The Little Death posterSex comedies are all the rage these days. Films like The Overnight and Sleeping With Other People, two of this year’s Tribeca Film Festival favorites will be coming your way in July and September respectively. Until then, The Little Death will fill the void, pun potentially intended. Paul and Maeve The Little Death stillFive couples living in suburban Sydney have very different but fascinating sexual desires, that included yolo sex toys to improve pleasure. Ans, yes, while the film seemingly centers around the topic of sex, The Little Death is actually about intimacy. The couples are as follows: Paul and Maeve- One with a suggested fear of commitment and the other with a rape fantasy while doing livecam sex chat. Phil and Maureen- Phil is a submissive man who is only aroused when his cold hearted wife is asleep. Dan and Evie- marriage therapist suggests role play might help, until Dan’s priorities take a turn. Richard and Rowena- Trying to conceive, sex becomes more about purpose and less about pleasure. Finally, Monica and Sam- She is a deaf video play interpreter and Sam is her customer. Each of these characters wants something from their  partner. Getting it comes with some truly hilarious and oftentimes heartbreaking consequences. Get the best dildos from bboutique, here you get the best variety of sex toys for women.Evie still The Little DeathThe script is brilliantly written and directed by Josh Lawson, who also beautifully portrays Paul. The structure is presented in form of a sexual manual and is entirely funny and informative. It allows the audience to open their own dialogue about deep seeded personal issues, both sexual and emotional, tackling such things as self loathing, fetishes, relationship shifts, and manipulation. Even if the particular kinks aren’t something you’ve experienced, the film is relatable in some way on every level. It’s a perfect balance of heartwarming and laugh out loud hysterical. With a superb ensemble cast, a fun soundtrack, and excellent writing, The Little Death should most definitely be on your list this weekend. The winner of the Audience Award at this year’s SXSW, you can count on a little something for everyone. Monica still The Little DeathI must take a moment to acknowledge what I think is the most beautiful and revelatory story in the entire film. The unique final scene between Monica and Sam, is some of the best dialogue I’ve seen in some time. 50% of which is in sign language, it allows us to  completely break down the barriers of communication in a very literal sense. Every moment between actors Erin James and T.J.Powers is perfection. It’s the perfect ending to an already out of this world indie gem. Even if the rest of the film weren’t as fantastic as it is, this scene alone brings laughter and happiness to your head and your heart. Most definitely seek this film out. You cannot go wrong.

The Little Death comes to theaters and VOD Friday, June 26th.

SYNOPSIS: The secret lives of five suburban couples living in Sydney reveal both the fetishes and the repercussions that come with sharing them.

Country: Australia

Language: English

Release Date: 26 June 2015 (USA)

Filming Locations: Sydney, Australia

LIz’s Review: ‘Bound To Vengeance’ holds us captive.

Bound to Vengeance posterIFC Midnight has given us a slew of great genre features in the past such as ATM, Exam, Dead Snow, and The Snowtown Murders (all available to stream on Netflix). Their newest release, Bound To Vengeance challenges the female protagonist role that we’re used to seeing in horror: Girl equals helpless victim, let’s leave the policing to the manly cops. No cops in sight, our lead takes action into her own hands.Bound to Vengeance still Eve and PhilThe film’s opening credit sequence is immediately reminiscent of Texas Chainsaw with a lone beat up van swiftly cruising down a deserted highway, though in this story the inhabitant of the car is our villain. Bound To Vengeance pulls no punches as the mental ride follows directly after those very opening credits. Our mystery man carries a tray with homemade soup down an eerie hall and into a locked basement room. There we find Eve, a young, slender woman chained to the floor. She manages to escape and in her attempt to get away, she realizes that she is not the only girl being held captive. She needs her captor. Fashioning a noose out of items inside the rundown house, Eve strikes a deal. He tells her where the others are and she drops him off at a hospital… But, even the best laid plans easily go awry.Bound to Vengeance Eve stillThe script is truly unexpected. Just when you think you’ve figured out what is going on, plot twist. You have to respect the ever changing scenery and manipulation. While it may not be a 5 star film, I will say, I had to know what the truth was and wanted to see Eve kick some major ass. Speaking of which, Tina Ivlev plays our heroine with an honest determination. She’s not a super ninja or hyper intelligent prodigy, she is a normal, albeit, incredibly resourceful and strong woman. That is what I appreciated most about the script. She was a girl who just wanted to save the others and in turn come to terms with her own captivity. Richard Tyson gives us our villain, Phil. It’s a complex performance filled with masterfully sick, power-struggle laden dialogue. How much do we trust Phil? Should we trust Phil at all? Once you get to the end of the movie, you realize that all the clues were there to begin with. Bound to Vengeance could have easily been a mini series. There is much more to this story and I for one would look forward to a sequel.

In Theaters and on VOD Friday, June 26th.

Film Synopsis
BOUND TO VENGEANCE is a gritty revenge thriller about a young woman, EVE (Tina Ivlev), who fights back and manages to escape a malicious abductor. However, after discovering she may not be the only victim, Eve unravels a darker truth and decides to turn the tables on her captor. The film is directed by J.M. Cravioto and stars breakout actress Tina Ivlev and Richard Tyson. The screenplay was written by Rock Shaink, Jr., and Keith Kjornes.
BOUND TO VENGEANCE 
Directed by: José Manuel Cravioto
Produced by: Alex Garcia, Rodolfo Marquez, Daniel Posada
Cast: Tina Ivlev (The Devil’s in the Details), Richard Tyson (Moonlighting), 
Bianca Malinowski (Midnight Bayou)  
TRT: 80 minutes
Language: English
Genre: Thriller / Horror

Liz’s Review: Get raunchy with ‘BALLS OUT’

Balls Out posterYou never know what you’re gonna see at Tribeca Film Festival. One out of left field film from last year was BALLS OUT. Wrong sports metaphor in this case since this particular movie revolves around an intramural college flag football league. Starring a rag tag team of hilarious and talented people like Jake Lacy, Kate McKinnon, Nikki Reed, Beck Bennett, Jay Pharoah and many, many more, Balls Out pulls no punches when it comes to the A-typical sports genre movie. Balls out cast stillCaleb (Jake Lacy) is a fifth year senior with law school on the brain and an overbearing and hilariously high-on-life girlfriend (Kate McKinnon). Suddenly finding himself faced with having his future mapped out for him, he begins to reminisce about his freshman year and his flag football team’s- The Panthers- epic win over a douchebag rival team the Titans. Haunted by the how the first game ended with the paralysis of his best friend, Caleb struggles to commit to what makes him truly happy. Balls Out is an unapologetic underdog story, that’s frankly funny as hell. Every single sports cliche you can think of is admittedly thrown in your face. Training montages, two stoner fans acting as the league’s “official announcers”, hidden personal agendas, each Panther member being just slightly too weird for reality, and a rival captain so damn ridiculous you love to hate him. All this is admitted in the actual dialogue. The film never takes itself seriously at any moment, which is what makes it so great. I was not expecting to like this film at all, and it ended up being my favorite comedy of the fest last year.Kate KcKinnon Balls Out stillSo let’s talk performances in Balls Out. Jake Lacy is, for lack of a better phrase, relatively straight laced, in comparison to the rest of the cast. Nikki Reed does an excellent job playing the girl who comes into Caleb’s life just when he needs it most. This was a nice departure for Reed coming off the Twilight series and a great follow up to her quirky performance in last year’s Murder of a Cat. She is cool and fun. Kate McKinnon steals every scene she is in. Since she joined SNL, I have been touting her as the new Amy Poehler. One wide-eyed look from this gal is comedy gold. Newly minted Panther head coach is played by Nick Kocher. Wher has this kis been all my life? He easily flips from just amusing to sidesplitting comedy with the ease of someone twice his age. How is he not in everything right now? Team him up with Chris Pratt, like yesterday. I want over saturation of Kocher immediately. Jay Pharoah and D.C. Pierson‘s narration as the sideline peanut gallery makes the game sequences what they are. Balls Out Beck StillNow, let’s get real  for a moment. Hands down, once again,the star of this film is Beck Bennett. I have been a fan ever since his national AT&T campaign. Believing he is vastly under utilized on SNL, I have been privileged to see his outstanding movie roles thus far. His last film, Beside Still Waters (a MUST see), was on the opposite end spectrum on his testosterone driven revenge obsession in Balls Out. Like McKinnon, each frame he appears in he completely owns. I don’t know how anyone kept a straight face having to be in a scene with him. It makes me wonder how much of his dialogue is improvised. I would imagine the DVD blooper reel with feature him heavily. Cheers to Beck for bring this film over the goal line.

BALLS OUT arrives theatrically and on VOD June 19th.

Genre: Comedy
TRT: 100 min
Camera: RED Epic
Language: English

Rated: R for crude and sexual material, language and some drug use

SYNOPSIS: With graduation, marriage, and an uncertain future on the horizon, fifth year college senior Caleb Fuller (Jake Lacy) decides to do the one thing he vowed to never do again: get the ol’ flag football team back together. Now with the help of his Panther teammates and unorthodox head coach Grant Rosenfalis (Nick Kocher), Caleb must defy all odds and logic if he ever hopes to achieve the intramural football glory he once had. Set in the highly popular world of college intramural sports, BALLS OUT is the epic sports movie for the guys who don’t deserve one.

Liz’s Review: ‘SET FIRE TO THE STARS’ ignites the screen

Set Fire To The Stars_Poster

It’s rare these days to see something so clever, elegant, and passionate all at once. SET FIRE TO THE STARS is the story of New York academic John Malcolm Brinnin and famous poet Dylan Thomas’ brief but impactful relationship. Brinnin takes it upon himself to bring Thomas to America for a series of 25 poetry readings across the country. Ignoring the rumors that Dylan is erratic in personality and behavior, Brinnin risks his career to bring his idol to the US. Brinnin makes the fated decision to extract him from the city for a few days in order to detox mind and body, and Thomas brings a whirlwind of spirit, tenacity, and his haunted past right to John’s doorstep.  When idolatry blinds common sense, is disappointment inevitable?

Celyn Jones in SET FIRE TO THE STARS

Celyn Jones in SET FIRE TO THE STARS

Celyn Jones, who co-wrote the screenplay with director Andy Goddard, gives an impeccable performance as Thomas. Never missing a beat, every breath and moment of silence is accounted for with an endless saturation of greatness. Celyn has had a  consistently successful television career over the years and is rumored to have been cast in the upcoming production of Mary Shelley’s Monster alongside our very own Sansa Stark, Sophie Turner. I truly hope this turns out to be true. I want to see so much more  of Celyn on screen, any size will do for my liking. He and Elijah Wood have completely believable chemistry together. Two men from different worlds, who I believe envy one another for very different reasons. Known for his long eclectic career for films like The Lord of the Rings to more recent indie gem Grand Piano, Wood has picked another winning script and delivers. His performance is pensive and thought-provoking.  Brinnin goes through quite the journey during the course of this particular snapshot in time. Set Fire To The Stars is based upon Brinnin’s novel titled Dylan Thomas in America. To be more specific, only 7 pages of  his novel make up the entire basis of the script, and what a glorious 7 pages chosen by Jones and Goddard.

Elijah Wood in SET FIRE TO THE STARS

Elijah Wood in SET FIRE TO THE STARS

The film is shot in black & white giving it a timeless quality. With a luscious beatnik jazz inspired soundtrack, Andy Goddard‘s directorial debut sings off the screen. Glorious lighting and splendid camera work take the slight exhale of a cigarette and create an ethereal piece of art. Long, heavy dialogue takes are beyond engrossing, they are poetry in their own right. Proof that Jones and Goddard teaming up was pure genius. Combined with the deliciously affected speech of the literary elite and era, Jones and Woods give us performances that might otherwise sound droll had it not been for the clear understanding and passion behind the text. This film is like like perfect ice cream sundae, with everything on top. If you are already a poetry fan, well, you might as well consider yourself down for the count. You will absolutely fall for this movie. I, for one, will be adding this to my DVD collection as soon as it becomes available, which thankfully, is very soon.

Elijah Wood in SET FIRE TO THE STARS

Elijah Wood in SET FIRE TO THE STARS

I was lucky enough to be a part of an intimate roundtable interview with Celyn and Elijah just yesterday. How method is Celyn when it comes to role preparation? Will Elijah be starring in a mistaken identity flick with Daniel Radcliffe? Find out all the juicy details in this extraordinarily fun interview in our newest episode of the Girls On Film podcast. Enjoy!

Celyi Jones and Elijah Wood. Roundtable interview for Set Fire  To The Stars. Photo by Liz Whittemore

Celyn Jones and Elijah Wood. Roundtable interview for Set Fire To The Stars. Photo by Liz Whittemore

OPENS FRIDAY, JUNE 12, 2015 in New York at The Village East, with a Los Angeles and major city roll out, June 19th!

SET FIRE TO THE STARS will be released nationwide on July 21 on DVD, VOD, Digital platforms and Itunes.

Country of Origin: United Kingdom

Format: DCP/2.35/B&W

Sound Format: Dolby Digital

Running Time: 93 minutes

Genre: Drama

Rating: Not Rated

In English

 

Based on true events, Elijah Wood stars as John Malcolm Brinnin, the New York academic who brought Dylan Thomas to America. Actor/co-writer Celyn Jones plays the volatile celebrity poet – tormented by anonymity, alcohol and the abyss – who scandalized the Manhattan literati of the Fifties and challenged Brinnin’s hero worship of his work. In the face of the Welsh poet’s wilder excesses in the Big Apple – angel, beast and madman – John has no choice but to hijack Dylan to a private retreat to get him ready for America. The days and nights that follow will change his life forever. Part literary biopic and – shot in cut-glass black-and-white – part love-letter to the American B-movies of the Forties and Fifties, Andy Goddard’s debut feature is both a character driven chamber piece and a cautionary tale about the flytrap of meeting your heroes.

Review: A ghost story that won’t let the past die in ‘We Are Still Here’

We Are Still Here posterIn the new haunted house horror We Are Still Here, Anne and Paul Sacchetti move to a small New England town to make a fresh start following the death of son Bobby.  Anne believes that Bobby’s spirit is in the house reassuring her that everything is hunky dory. After she and Paul enlist their new age friends Jacob and May to visit and ease their minds, they realize something much older is lurking and poised to rear it’s ugly head. The past does not want to stay in the past.We Are Still Here house stillRight off the bat, the camera work displays an “I’m not alone” feeling with handheld, over the shoulder and around the corner shots that set the tone for the entirety of the film. Establishing shots of each room and the snow covered acres surrounding the property itself, give you a definitely isolated sense. 10 minutes in, our first real set up moment, an object from the past and a blink-and-you-miss-it jump scare of classic proportion. Not bad, not bad at all. Writer/Director Ted Geoghegan, clearly with a crush on the classics good and bad, knows his stuff. The story moves along at lightening pace, laying out a small town’s history mired with sadness, rumors, and evil. We Are Still Here pays homage to films like Amityville and Poltergeist. Films with an unshakable past that seem to be well known by the locals and end up terrorizing the newbies. The practical effects are gold and vomit inducing for sure, but the use of the seamless CG takes the film to another level. We Are Still Here still Lisa and LarryFlawlessly held together with a stellar cast of genre greats, We Are Still Here is an instant classic. Barbara Crampton‘s Anne is grounded, loving, and searching for comfort. Andrew Sensenig‘s portrayal of Paul is as masculine and protective as you can get, without losing that caring husband edge. Larry Fessenden as Jacob is funny and vivacious. Lisa Marie plays May with an airy realness of someone who is actually a sensitive. The four leads work so well with one another, I cannot imagine a different cast. Fun Fact: Both Barbara and Larry recently appeared in the 2011 horror/thriller You’re Next (Another film I would recommend). The music is quiet and looming like that of a small wind chime, and truly adds the the eerie factor. The color scheme of the surrounding dank New England winter (one I grew up with myself) makes the eventual appearance of bright red blood all the more visually impactful. The set dressing is top notch. The house appears untouched since the film’s set 1979 date. Old houses creek, we all know this to be true, but the timing of the sound editing ramps up the natural inclination that maybe you shouldn’t hang out long in a dusty old basement. We Are Still Here Barbara CramptonA few obvious takeaways from this movie: 1. Don’t trust your creepy neighbors, 2. Shit starts flying off the walls you should just assume the worst, and 3. Don’t ever, ever mess with the dead. There are 1000 more things I could praise about this film, thing is, I really  just want you to go see it for yourselves! We Are Still Here arrives in theaters and on VOD today, June 5th. Go get your spooky on.

Liz’s Review: ‘DOOMSDAYS’ are indeed coming, so you might as well laugh it up until then

doomsdays one sheet

If Wes Anderson made a movie with 1/50th of his usual budget and a cast of indie gems, you’d have the new pre-apocalyptic comedy DOOMSDAYS. Since post-apocalyptic films are all the rage these days, the concept of a precursor is already funny in it’s own right. The story revolves around two eccentric slackers extraordinaire who have a penchant for breaking into vacation homes in the Catskills. Why, you might ask? Well, the world’s need for oil as a natural resource is rapidly running into a bit of a snafu since mother nature is none  too pleased with the choice, besides the fact that when it does eventually and inevitably run out, life as we know it essentially fucked. So, before this becomes a major reality, Dirty Fred and Bruho have decided that the vagabond lifestyle is the bees knees. Using existing resources left behind by these dwellings owners, these two gentleman roam the countryside of upstate New York living a life relatively free of consequences from ‘the man’. Once they run into a teen runaway and wanderlust filled young woman, the small group dynamic shifts dramatically. doomsdays still oneFilled with sharp and witty dialogue that’s just weird enough to be both funny and face-palmy (new word), Doomsdays is like nothing you expect it to be. Scenes filled with nothing become everything. There is no technology in this film. No cell phones, no television, and no working laptops, allow conversation and contemplation to become the main focus of this unusual film. With a strangely adorable slice of buddy comedy mixed in, it’s a film any indie buff would be proud to have in his/her back pocket of greatness. Reyna and Fred Gallery 4KWriter/Director Eddie Mullins clearly knows his shit. Besides the obvious writing talent, his use of a singular stationary camera is a perfect fit for this piece. The structure is laid out in a month long calendar style, which only adds to the great pacing. The original score by Bang And Yell is catchy and really well placed. Justin Rice as Dirty Fred is a pretentious nutter but completely lovable.  Leo Fitzpatrick plays Bruho with a genuine curmudgeonly edge. Brian Charles Johnson, who this theater nerd recognized from Broadway’s Spring Awakening, is young Jaidon. Comic timing of a master and excitable enthusiasm of a star, I loved him. Laura Campbell is Reyna. Not so different from the rest of the crew, this seemingly normal woman is just as damaged and adventurous as the boys. These four have an incredible chemistry which makes me ponder the amount of rehearsal time everyone had together, which is clearly a total compliment.Punching game DoomsdaysDoomsdays is ultimately a story about adjusting to other people’s odd idiosyncrasies. This film nails all the things we wish we could get away with doing and saying. I highly recommend catching this unique indie this weekend. DOOMSDAYS comes to theaters and VOD Fridsay, June 5th.