‘THE COFFEE TABLE’ (2024) is the year’s most disturbing horror film.

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THE COFFEE TABLE

The Coffee Table 2024 posterThe Coffee Table 2024 poster

THE COFFEE TABLE follows Jesus and Maria, a couple going through a difficult time in their relationship. Nevertheless, they have just become parents. To shape their new life, they decide to buy a new coffee table. A decision that will change their existence.


A film about a coffee table and not at all about a coffee table, this meditation on communication through the lens of horror is epic. THE COFFEE TABLE is the year’s most traumatizing film.

The Coffee Table still 2The notion of invisible labor rears its ugly head around 15 minutes in, but it’s what happens 4 minutes later that is so horrific you won’t believe what you’re eyes are telling your brain. THE COFFEE TABLE pulls no punches. Its first brutal images are so disturbing you won’t know what to do next. With Maria dutifully shopping for her idiot husband, the audience can only wait with bated breath for her reaction and what Jesús plans to do next. Admittedly, his behavior will break you.

Estafanía de los Santos delivers a tour de force performance as Maria. Her unconditional love for their son, incredibly intense opinions, and full-bellied laugh create a mesmerizing turn.

The Coffee Table still 1David Pareja gives Jesús a shockingly calm demeanor when forced to speak with the other cast members. It will, no doubt, upset the viewer tenfold. The lies flow out, and poor Maria continues to berate him without knowing a damn thing. His subsequent management of trauma drives the entire film.

The score by Bambikina is a demented manipulation of lullaby tones and funeral dirge. The practical FX and makeup are so effective. You wish they weren’t. THE COFFEE TABLE quite literally drips with irony and dread. Every minute that passes, the dialogue digs into your psyche in the most intrusive way. It’s brilliant and unspeakably fraught writing. You are not ready.


THE COFFEE TABLE will begin a limited theatrical run beginning in Los Angeles at Laemmle Glendale on April 19, with additional markets to follow including New York, Austin, and Chicago. The film will arrive on DVD and VOD on May 14.

 

THE COFFEE TABLE
Original title: La mesita del comedor

Directed by Caye Casas
Written by: Cristina Borobia, Caye Casas

Starring: David Pareja, Estefanía de los Santos, Josep Riera, Claudia Riera, Eduardo Antuña

Produced by: Norbert Llaràs
Production Company: Alhena Production
Co-Production Company: Apocalipsis Producciones, La Charito Films
Cinematography by: Alberto Morago
Edited by: Caye Casas
Music by: Bambikina

Spain I 2022 I Horror, Comedy I 90 minutes

The film held a robust festival life, including a World Premiere at Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival where it won Best Film in the ‘Rebels with a Cause’ section, a North American premiere at Fantastic Fest, and additional screenings at Fantaspoa – International Fantastic Film Festival, Macabro – Festival Internacional de Cine de la Ciudad de México, and Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival, where it received the White Raven award.

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‘EXHUMA’ (2024) Let the dead stay buried.

well go usa logoEXHUMA

Exhuma-Poster-WellGoUSA-1382x2048 An ancient evil affects the firstborn children of a wealthy family with uncontrollable wailing in their dreams. Eager to cash in, a team of macabre experts takes on this new client. As they dig deeper into this unique case, the usually confident group discovers they are in over their heads. In EXHUMA, that’s only the beginning of this horrifying tale.

Exhuma-KHorror-WellGoUSA-1340x754-5Performances are magnificent across the board. This spectacular multi-generational ensemble cast delivers engrossing mystery and terror. The script unfolds in chapters, like a how-to guide dealing with the underworld. Descriptions of rituals and occupational titles come in narration from the team. This creative storytelling immerses the audience in what feels like an inevitable tragedy. Complicating things further are the secrets our wealthy family hides. Genre fans will have a field day with horror canon balanced with the slightest touch of humor and serious gore. It is beyond compelling.

Exhuma Well Go UsaMixing tradition and superstition combined with an ominous score makes the hairs on your arms stick straight up. It’s a multi-sensory watch. EXHUMA deserves your full attention from the very first frame. There is so much meat on the bone. Expanding this world almost certainly feels possible and welcome. At its current runtime of two-plus hours, viewers would eat up more stories from this team. Their chemistry is magic, and a franchise would delight fans. The twists and turns keep coming. EXHUMA is undeniably one of the most intriguing cinematic experiences of the year.


EXHUMA 

Opening in Los Angeles March 15 | In Theaters Across North America March 22

For more reviews of Well Go USA films, click here!

 

All things Horror, we’ve got you covered!


Exhuma-KHorror-WellGoUSA-1340x754-2 Visit the official film page: https://wellgousa.com/films/exhuma

When a renowned shaman (KIM Go-Eun) and her protégé (Lee Do-hyun) are hired by a wealthy, enigmatic family, they begin investigating the cause of a disturbing supernatural illness that affects only the first-born children of each generation. With the help of a knowledgeable mortician (YOO Hai-jin) and the country’s most revered geomancer (CHOI Min-sik), they soon trace the affliction’s origin to a long-hidden family grave located on sacred ground. Sensing an ominous aura surrounding the burial site, the team opts to exhume and relocate the ancestral remains immediately. But as something much darker emerges, they soon discover what befalls those who dare to mess with the wrong grave.

Directed by: Jang Jae-Hyun

Cast: Choi Min-Sik, Kim Go-Eun, Yoo Hai-Jin, and Lee Do-Hyun


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‘Can’ & YATCH- ‘My Idea’ (SXSW 2024) one director, mesmerizing vision

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CAN

CAN poster SXSW 2024Filmmaker Kailee McGee shares snapshots of her innermost thoughts on her journey with breast cancer. Tongue in cheek, manic, clever, stream of consciousness, unfiltered, and hilariously meta, CAN feels revelatory. It is celebratory irreverence. McGee makes her situation relatable and palpable. She is raw and funny as hell. I would 1000% watch a feature-length version. It has that “it” factor, and McGee owns every bit of its magic.

Can SXSW 2024 still

Credits

Director:

Kailee McGee

Producer:

JP Bolles, Kailee McGee

Screenwriter:

Kailee McGee

Cinematographer:

Patrick Jones

Editor:

Rich Costales, Kailee McGee

Production Designer:

Rose Curry

Sound Designer:

Travis Prater

Music:

Andrew Orkin

Principal Cast:

Kailee McGee, Mamoudou Athie, Whitmer Thomas, Ellyn Jameson, Greta Titelman, Nori Reed

Additional Credits:

Sound Recordist: Dave McKeever, Art Director: Tahryn Smith, Art Director: Conor Brown, Hair & Makeup: Christina Spina, Additional Editing: Mike Giambra

 

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MY IDEA

MY IDEA poster SXSW 2024

The video features a performer perpetually dressed in a mo-cap suit. It is what my brain imagines Andy Serkis‘ life to be in his nightmares. Alex Karpovsky delivers a charming performance. You can feel the yearning for freedom.

YATCH‘s track is super catchy. Kailee McGee proves, for the 2nd time at this year’s fest, that she possesses unbridled creativity. Reteaming with editor Rich Costales is chef’s kiss. They clearly understand each other’s vision. Give her all the jobs.

Credits

Director:

Kailee McGee

Executive Producer:

Adam Lisagor

Producer:

Kailee McGee, Nichole Luna, Rich Costales

Screenwriter:

Kailee McGee

Cinematographer:

Connor Heck

Editor:

Rich Costales

Production Designer:

Tahryn Smith

Sound Designer:

Dave McKeever

Music:

YACHT

Principal Cast:

Alex Karpovsky, Claire L. Evans, Jona Bechtolt, Rob Kieswetter, Kailee McGee

Additional Credits:

Hair & Make-Up: Christina Spina, 1st AD: Jason Lawliss, Choreography: Maritza Navarro, Color by: Beau Leon, VFX: Sandwich Video, MoCap Costume by: Francesca Roth, Set Dresser: Conor Brown, Prop Master: Graham Anderson, TED Talk Script by: Claire L. Evans

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‘THINGS WILL BE DIFFERENT’ (SXSW 2024) is sci-fi insanity.

SXSW 2024 color logoTHINGS WILL BE DIFFERENT

Things Will Be Different SXSW 2024

Writer-director Michael Felker teams up with indie gods and SXSW sweethearts Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead to bring 2024 audiences the new film THINGS WILL BE DIFFERENT.

Suspension of disbelief plays a vital role. The concept of the siblings hiding from police in a time-shifting hideout is a brilliant and bonkers idea, and Joe and Sid accept it without a moment’s hesitation. Surrounded by a Groundhog Day effect, but one that proves deadlier, brother and sister mentally deteriorate, and one small change triggers chaos.

Sid and Joseph throw theories against the wall in a way I can only imagine Felker did when concocting the screenplay. Nothing and everything is a clue, as the fear of a butterfly effect keeps them trapped.

Things Will Be Different SXSW 2024Riley Dandy (CHRISTMAS BLOODY CHRISTMAS) gives Sidney an anxious eagerness driven by the fact that her daughter is in the present. The longer she remains trapped in the house, the more she fears her daughter’s inevitable trauma.

Adam David Thompson (Here Alone, Creep Box) plays Joseph. Thompson does his best to remain even-keeled, but circumstances and ever-evolving complications make that challenging. Dandy and Thompson’s chemistry is a perfect balance of at arm’s length and trust. It is like watching a tennis match between two pros. They eat Felker’s script up.

THINGS WILL BE DIFFERENT is a slick sci-fi about regret, redemption, and inevitably. With nods to Big Brother, it earns repeated viewings.


Credits

Director:

Michael Felker

Executive Producer:

David Lawson Jr., Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead

Producer:

Shane Spiegel, Jacob Rosenthal, Michael Felker

Screenwriter:

Michael Felker

Cinematographer:

Carissa Dorson

Editor:

Michael Felker, Rebeca Marques

Production Designer:

Zachary Thomas

Sound Designer:

Michael Huang

Music:

Jimmy LaValle, Michael A. Muller

Principal Cast:

Adam David Thompson, Riley Dandy, Chloe Skoczen, Justin Benson, Sarah Bolger, Jori Lynn Felker

Additional Credits:

Casting Director: Chrissy Fiorilli-Ellington, Associate Producer: Jourdan Thomson, Associate Producer: James Thomson, Costume Designer: Alissa Wehrli, Key Makeup Artist: Jessica Lynn, Re-Recording Mixer: Michael Huang

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‘Brandy Hellville & the Cult of Fast Fashion.’ (SXSW 2024) Exploitation and dollar signs.

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Brandy Hellville & the Cult of Fast Fashion

Brandy Hellville & the Cult of Fast Fashion SXSW 2024Fast fashion and exploitation. The popular teen brand Brandy Melville comes under the microscope in a new documentary feature premiering at SXSW 2024 Brandy Hellville & the Cult of Fast Fashion. In the film, former employees discuss how they got hired, the company’s everyday practices, and the fallout of their exposure.

Brandy Melville began in Italy as a t-shirt company. Once it moved to the US, the aesthetic morphed into the California bohemian, long-haired, skinny girl. The company uses genius tangible marketing, specifically Instagram, and teens take pictures of their peers. Their hiring practices sound like a copy and paste of Abercrombie & Fitch. Although, Brandy takes it a step further. The few girls of color could only be found in the stock room or relegated to the register.

Then Stefan began buying the clothes off their employee’s backs to mass produce replicas as their own product, often stealing graphics from other artists globally. The pending lawsuit details include the discovery of a group chat. Former Store Owner and Former VP, whose identities are anonymous and played by actors, speak about the most offensive, anti-Semitic, sexually explicit memes and photos in the thread. Managers would take “Style Photos” on each shift sent via text to Stefan. It is all gross.

The United States and Europe send billions of pieces of fashion to Ghana. The environmental impact is genuinely shocking. We’ve all heard stories about it, but witnessing the mounds of discarded clothing, the chemicals in the water, and the poisoning of our food. The footage of the Ghanaian beaches looks fake. It’s an atrocity.

Brandy Melville and their continued fans do not care. Influencers want free swag, the employees clout, and Stefan wants money. They are the worst of humanity. Most people want to feel like they are making positive choices with their purchasing power. We know fast fashion means unethical practices and The West is just as guilty as Stefan. Brandy Hellville & the Cult of Fast Fashion might make you think twice about purchasing another cheap article of clothing you don’t need.


SCREENING:

Mar 14, 2024 8:45pm – 10:16pm CT Stateside Theatre

Credits

Director:

Eva Orner

Producer:

Jonathan Chinn, Simon Chinn, Eva Orner

Cinematographer:

Nick Higgins

Editor:

Claire Didier

Music:

Cornel Wilczek

Additional Credits:

Line Producer: David Kraemer

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‘SEW TORN’ (SXSW 2024) is a delightfully quirky caper

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SEW TORN

Sew Torn SXSW 2024

A business on the verge of closure. Unresolved grief. An accident. A briefcase full of money. Welcome to SXSW 2024’s quirky caper, SEW TORN.

SEW TORN delivers a slick opening scene and an incredibly creative title sequence. You are locked in from the very first frame. Filmmaker Freddy Macdonald‘s quick-take editing combined with Jacob Tardien’s mischievous score is pure delight. The script is genius and unpredictable, akin to watching a ping-pong match.

John Lynch plays villainous drug-dealing patriarch Hudson Armitage. He is a powerhouse. K Callan is hilarious in a small-town multi-hyphenate role. Calum Worthy is super intriguing as Joshua, a fearful son under his father’s thumb. Worthy brings an unexpected vulnerability that mirrors Barbara.

Caroline Goodall is magnificent as Barbara’s client and entitled bride-to-be Grace. She is a monstrous anchor in the film and deliciously unforgettable. Eve Connolly owns every second of screen time. SEW TORN has minimal dialogue. Connolly pulls a modern-day Chaplin-meets-MacGyver. Fearless and entirely brilliant, Connolly is a star.

SEW TORN tackles destiny, morality, and the consequences of our life choices. SXSW 2024 audiences are fortunate to experience this delicious tale of crime and craftiness. It is undoubtedly one of the best films of the festival.


Film Screenings

Mar 10, 2024
10:15pm11:50pm
Mar 11, 2024
10:15pm11:50pm
Mar 11, 2024
10:45pm12:20am
Mar 16, 2024
9:30pm11:05pm

Credits

Director:

Freddy Macdonald

Executive Producer:

Ronnie Lott, John Zavitsanos, Michael Zilkha, Baird Craft, Tristan Aufiero, Elena Kourkoumelis, John Dillon Powell, Amy Lin, William Lin, Didi Wong, Gary MacDermid, Oliver Keller

Producer:

Fred Macdonald, Barry Navidi, Sebastian Klinger, Diamantis Zavitsanos, Socratis Zavitsanos

Screenwriter:

Freddy Macdonald, Fred Macdonald

Cinematographer:

Sebastian Klinger

Editor:

Freddy Macdonald

Production Designer:

Viviane Rapp

Sound Designer:

Alexander Stratigenas

Music:

Jacob Tardien

Principal Cast:

Eve Connolly, Calum Worthy, John Lynch, K Callan, Ron Cook, Thomas Douglas, Werner Biermeier, Veronika Herren-Wenger, Caroline Goodall

Additional Credits:

Co-Producers: Timothy Ross, Alexander Stratigenas, Casting : Sharon Howard-Field, Nathan Wiley, Costume Designer: Viviane Rapp, Hair & Makeup Designer: Carol Geiger, First Assistant Director: Govind Sharma, Property Master: Seline Imhasly, Gaffer : Elia Quadri, Production Coordinator : Mick Vuillemier, Hair and Makeup Artist : Ximena Fanchini, First Assistant Camera: Janis Wolf

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‘RESYNATOR’ (SXSW 2024) An engrossing father-daughter reconnection

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RESYNATOR

resynator SXSW 2024Alison Tavel sets off on a global journey to learn more about her estranged father’s mysterious invention and, ultimately, the man himself.

Darkness, mystery, and a slew of unresolved childhood trauma cloud Ali’s journey into who her father was. Her paternal grandmother keeps particular details close to her chest, forcing Ali to explore the stories of everyone else who knew him.

Resynator (2024)Ali’s ability to disassociate makes sense. As a child of divorce when I was five years old, few memories remain. My father, like Ali’s, is still a stranger. She wrestles with differing opinions of who Don was. So many questions arise during her search. What the hell is a Resynator anyway? With all the hype surrounding its invention, why didn’t it blow up? Did depression play a part in Don’s accident?

Those in the industry discovering the Resynator’s abilities for the first time take full advantage of its one-of-a-kind sounds. Watching musicians interact with it in real-time and creating original work is joyous. Don’s Rolodex plays an integral part in Ali’s ability to reach talent from members of Phish, Portishead, Yes, Beastie Boys, Foo Fighters, Goyte, Fred Armisen, and someone who played one of the first demo versions, Peter Gabriel.

Resynator  SXSW (2024) Don Tavel slideDanny Madden’s animation transitions are charming. We experience them alongside archival audio of Don demonstrating the Resynator. Ali utilizes a unique device in narrating the film in the form of a letter to her father, which makes more sense when a box arrives from her aunt. Her most poignant discovery comes in the form of long-lost letters from her father, found in the basement after the passing of her grandmother.

Alison Tavel invites SXSW 2024 audiences on an intimate journey of music, connection, and self-discovery. RESYNATOR is a touching film about the ripple effect of one person’s life.

Film Screenings

Mar 10, 2024
6:00pm7:36pm
 
Mar 16, 2024
12:00pm1:36pm
 

Credits

Director:

Alison Tavel

Executive Producer:

Grace Potter

Producer:

Kathryn Robson, Jon Lullo, Brendan Walter, Sara Nesson, Barbara McDonough, Christopher Noviello

Cinematographer:

Justin Key, David Yeaman, Max Cutrone, Beth Cloutier

Editor:

Kathryn Robson, Chris Gibson

Music:

Chris Ruggiero

Principal Cast:

Alison Tavel, Grace Potter, Peter Gabriel, Jon Anderson, Fred Armisen, Money Mark, Gotye, Mike Gordon, Brian Kehew, Christian Castagno

Additional Credits:

Animator: Danny Madden

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‘AUDREY’ (SXSW 2024) is dark comic genius

SXSW 2024 color logoAUDREY

Audrey SXSW 2024

Former soap star Ronnie is a delusional narcissist living precariously through her eldest ungrateful daughter. When one of Audrey’s tantrums goes wrong, Ronnie assumes her identity in an exclusive acting class to prove her talent to her family. With Audrey no longer the erratic center of attention, the family realizes the profound effect she has

Josephine Blazier nails the role of Audrey. She is entirely loathsome and vicious. The apple does not fall far from the tree.

Ronnie’s youngest daughter is an afterthought, but actress Hannah Diviney is anything but. When Audrey is in a coma, Norah begins living her best life. Diviney possesses brilliant comic timing, and her chemistry with her castmates is magic.

Ronnie’s emotionally stunted and sexually repressed husband, played by Jeremy Lindsay Taylor, finds inspiration from the oddest place. He rekindles his passion for his wife through the absence of his cruel eldest daughter. Taylor moves from a shell of a man to a stallion. He is a delight.

Jackie van Beek gives Ronnie shameless confidence, owning every second of screen time. Hers is the kind of borderline slapstick comedy that you cannot teach. Jackie van Beek is irresistible, often stealing a scene with little more than a glance. She is perfection. I demand an entire franchise based on AUDREY.

In three distinct acts, the lunacy and lies lead to genuine laugh-out-loud scenes. Lou Sanz‘s script goes in directions impossible to predict. It’s much darker but equally as funny. SXSW 2024 audiences are in for one wacky ride.


Film Screenings

Mar 10, 2024
2:30pm4:07pm
 
Mar 11, 2024
5:15pm6:52pm
 
Mar 11, 2024
5:45pm7:22pm
 
Mar 15, 2024
2:15pm3:52pm

Credits

Director:

Natalie Bailey

Producer:

Michael Wrenn, Dan Lake, Shannon Wilson-McClinton, Diya Eid

Screenwriter:

Lou Sanz

Cinematographer:

Simon Ozolins ACS

Editor:

Katrina Barker

Production Designer:

Helen O’Loan APDG

Music:

Alex Cameron

Principal Cast:

Jackie Van Beek, Josephine Blazier, Hannah Diviney, Jeremy Lindsay Taylor

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‘HUNTING DAZE’ (SXSW 2024) and its slow simmering rage

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HUNTING DAZE

Hunting Daze SXSW 2024Annick Blanc gives SXSW 2024 audiences something to chew on with HUNTING DAZE, a genre-defying tale of isolation, pack mentality, and self-preservation. Exotic dancer Nina finds herself stuck and calls upon a former client for roadside assistance. Without transport, he brings her back to an isolated cabin in the wilderness. Upon discovering it is a bachelor party, the eclectic group of men agrees to let her stay the weekend if, and only if, she can abide by an “all for one’ mentality.

Beautiful drone shots and an enveloping score draw you in immediately. Slow-motion dynamics and natural lighting have an immersive effect on the audience. The dialogue brilliantly hovers between misogynist and welcoming. Scenarios range from the absurd to fraught with danger. Blanc understands the constant din of fear a woman feels surrounded by exclusively male energy. It’s a volatility forced upon us and a visceral buzzing from head to toe.

Nina experiences ominous visions during the film, allowing Blanc to introduce magical realism into the script. These moments are some of the most extraordinary cinematically, taking us inside Nina’s subconscious.

Nahéma Ricci is a badass as Nina. She is magnetic, holding the audience in the palm of her hand. Blanc gives her one hell of an arc, and Ricci delivers. She is a star.

Each character is fully fleshed out, with their distinct quirks and personalities making for an unpredictable momentum. Blanc leans into the pack mentality quite literally with appearances by wolves. HUNTING DAZE is a spectacular metaphor for patriarchal power. My way or the highway structure assumes a male authority, especially if a woman attempts to rock the boat. This overarching sense of superiority we face from microaggressions to murder, HUNTING DAZE is a film of simmering feminist rage.


Film Screenings

Mar 9, 2024
10:00pm11:19pm
 
Mar 11, 2024
7:00pm8:19pm
 
Mar 14, 2024
9:00pm10:19pm
 
Mar 14, 2024
9:30pm10:49pm

 

Credits

Director:

Annick Blanc

Producer:

Maria Gracia Turgeon, Annick Blanc

Screenwriter:

Annick Blanc

Cinematographer:

Vincent Gonneville

Editor:

Amélie Labrèche

Music:

Peter Venne

Principal Cast:

Nahéma Ricci, Bruno Marcil, Frédéric Millaire-Zouvi, Marc Beaupré, Alexandre Landry, Maxime Genois, Noubi Ndiaye

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‘ADRIANNE & THE CASTLE’ (SXSW 2024) The purest love of all

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ADRIANNE & THE CASTLE

Adrianne & the castle SXSW 2024Director Shannon Walsh shares the extraordinary love story between an artist and his larger-than-life wife. SXSW 2024 audiences discover the legacy of Adrianne and Alan St. George. This documentary is a tale of adoration, art, and Adrianne.

Adrianne is a mesmerizing figure. Her vibrant handcrafted wardrobe and elaborate wigs were more than an act. Adrianne embodied creativity and dreams. She was a living, breathing ball of light.

Adrianne & The Castle SXSW 2024 waltzHerein lies the challenge for Alan and Shannon. How do you do justice to such a love story? Experimental musical interludes, Adrianne’s Doll Room, quirky home movies, and the ever-expanding house that grows like a whimsical version of The Winchester House. The mansion is an explosion of color, lavish draping fabrics, sculptures, and murals, all featuring Adrianne and Alan’s likenesses. It is Versailles meets Grimm’s Fairytales, each room mirroring a slice of her exuberant persona. She was and remains Alan’s muse for all things.

Alan owns a mascot company, providing characters from Smokey The Bear, Disney, and The White House to local high schools. It is how he finances the endless construction. After Adrianne passes, Alan is lost. The film is a creative catharsis. Half tribute and half coping mechanism, ADRIANNE & THE CASTLE is a fascinating meditation on grief and a portrait of exemplary soul mates.

Film Screenings

Mar 9, 2024
9:15pm10:41pm
 
Mar 13, 2024
11:15am12:41pm
 
Mar 13, 2024
11:45am1:11pm
 
Director:

Shannon Walsh

Producer:

Ina Fichman

Screenwriter:

Shannon Walsh, Laurel Sprengelmeyer

Cinematographer:

Pablo Alvarez-Mesa

Editor:

Sophie Farkas Bolla

Production Designer:

Nalo Soyini Bruce

Sound Designer:

Luc Bouchard

Music:

Richard Reed Parry

Principal Cast:

Alan St George, Nathan McDonald, Shannon Walsh, SLee

Additional Credits:

Re-recording Mixer: Gavin Fernandes, Additional Vocal Arrangements and Music by: Raquel Acevedo Klein

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‘7 KEYS’ (SXSW 2024) Flirt, fight, & flight.

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7 KEYS

7 Keys SXSW 2024

A chance meeting plunges Lena and Daniel into a whirlwind tour of his previous dwellings since he still has their keys. Writer-director Joy Wilkinson brings SXSW 2024 audiences on a journey through London and the haunting past of two souls seeking connection. Getting caught is the least of their problems.

Lena is sexually bold and fearless. After a housing-insecure childhood, her fascination with Daniel’s homes sparks a game of fantasy and danger. Emma McDonald does a brilliant job of pushing boundaries and listening to her instincts.

Daniel comes off as gentlemanly, if not a touch awkward. On edge during their clandestine tour, the audience knows more than Lena. Billy Postlethwaite gives Daniel a shocking arc. You will be fascinated and appalled in decyphering his true persona. It’s one hell of a turn.

Wilkinson keeps us on our toes as we feel more nervous about the pair getting caught at any moment. Clues dropped along the way make you question the truth. Lena and Daniel both have deep abandonment issues and unresolved trauma that skew our opinions with each story they choose to reveal.

Halfway through, we get a better sense. The plot goes from uncomfortable to unsettling in a flash. The big twist will chill you to the bone and lead to an unexpected final act. 7 KEYS is about power and obsession. It’s tense, creative, and completely unhinged. 7 KEYS is SXSW 2024 gold.


Film Screenings

Mar 9, 2024
6:30pm8:03pm
Mar 9, 2024
7:00pm8:33pm
Mar 13, 2024
9:15pm10:48pm
Mar 13, 2024
9:45pm11:18pm
Mar 15, 2024
9:15pm10:48pm
Director:

Joy Wilkinson

Producer:

Cassandra Sigsgaard, Dylan Rees

Screenwriter:

Joy Wilkinson

Cinematographer:

Mary Farbrother

Editor:

Roberta Bononi

Production Designer:

Natasha Jenkins

Sound Designer:

Emma Butt

Music:

Max Perryment

Principal Cast:

Emma McDonald, Billy Postlethwaite, Kaylen Luke, Joey Akubeze, Amit Shah, Jane Goddard

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‘DICKWEED’ (SXSW 2024)- a shocking WTF doc

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DICKWEED

Dickweed SXSW 2024SXSW 2024 audiences are in for a real WTF documentary in Jonathan Ignatius Green‘s DICKWEED. In 2012, a wild kidnapping in the middle of the night led to torture, mystery, and one man’s loss of his, let’s say, manhood. The ensuing wild goose chase and brazen criminal actions challenge all involved. Police had no idea what kind of mastermind they were dealing with.

The film pulls no punches, with Michael launching headfirst into his story. An average day after working at his cannabis shop turns deadly when masked men grab him and a new roommate, drive them out into the desert, and demand to know where he buried a million dollars.

DICKWEED utilizes crime scene photos, dashcam footage, and sit-down interviews with the victims, detectives, and lawyers involved in the case. It sounds like a mockumentary. I had to look up the synopsis twice to confirm I wouldn’t make a fool of myself.

From Newport Beach, the search for suspects becomes a global affair. Revealing more details takes the fun out of this off-the-wall viewing experience. DICKWEED is an episode of 20/20 on steroids. True crime fans will devour this film. Get ready, SXSW 2024, for a shocking global manhunt, seemingly triggered by an innocuous passing comment. Your jaw will drop.


Film Screenings

Mar 9, 2024
2:30pm4:00pm
 
Mar 12, 2024
6:45pm8:15pm
 
Mar 12, 2024
7:15pm8:45pm
 
Mar 14, 2024
5:45pm7:15pm
 
Mar 14, 2024
6:15pm7:45pm

 

Credits

Director:

Jonathan Ignatius Green

Executive Producer:

Amy Bandlien Storkel, Bryan Storkel

Producer:

David Ricksecker, Jefferis Gray

Cinematographer:

Skyler Bocciolatt, Ben Joyner

Editor:

Peter Garriott, Connor Davis

Music:

John Jennings Boyd

Principal Cast:

Emily Pokora, Ronald Douglass, Greg Kriek, Rizzy Fuentes, Jerry Gregorio, Mikey Shayan, Kristen Vaganos, Brand Birtwistle, Jamison Sandbloom, John Fantasia

Two people got kidnapped. One man lost his dick. No-one got any money. This heist-gone-horribly-wrong led one Newport Beach detective on an international manhunt for the most twisted criminal he’d ever hunted. In 2012, Michael, a local weed dispensary owner, got home from work and plopped down on the sofa like any other weeknight. Three hours later he was zip-tied and eating dirt as three men tried to beat him into admitting where he’d buried the million dollars. And he would have gladly told them rather than endure what happened next. The only problem was, he hadn’t buried a million dollars, and after they tortured him and left him to die, he still had no idea who these men were.

For all things SXSW 2024, click here!

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‘We Can Be Heroes’ (SXSW 2024) where fantasy is reality

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WE CAN BE HEROESWe Can Be Heroes SXSW 2024

Filmmakers Carina Mia Wong and Alex Simmons bring SXSW 2024 audiences a joyous doc about a special camp in the Hudson Valley. WE CAN BE HEROES will conquer your heart.

These kids possess an infectious passion that spills off the screen. They have profound thoughts and feelings. They openly identify their fears, anxieties, heartaches, and powers. Their honesty is inspiring. For as much as they might feel like they do not fit into the popular crowd at home, Wayfinder allows them a chance to blossom and shine. Campers are free to express themselves and feel safe in their gender identity and neurodivergence.

The counselors are brilliant. Anything could happen within a game that encourages explosive imagination. They understand the volatility of swirling emotions and use improvisation and patience to create a fully immersive experience. The campers might not initially realize the individualized care and stealth emotional therapy they get in their final moments at Wayfinder.

The film includes footage from the previous summer, smartly delineated by a change in color. Including glorious overhead shots of battles, we experience the culmination of the week, The Adventure Game. It consists of Three distinct parts. In this summer’s story, six factions of faeries battle to save all the creatures left in their world. It is titled The Last Green. Camper Dexter epically narrates throughout the film. What starts as fun and games ends in collective catharsis.

Everyone is accepting. The film is another reminder that hate is taught and not inherent. WE CAN BE HEROES is pure magic. It is a study of humanity and one of the most relatable films, whether or not you are a part of the LARPing community. WE CAN BE HEROES reassures us that the younger generation will continue to fight. Hope is not lost.


Film Screenings

 
Mar 9, 2024
11:45am1:11pm
 
Mar 10, 2024
2:45pm4:11pm
 
Mar 10, 2024
3:15pm4:41pm
 
Mar 13, 2024
3:15pm4:41pm
 
Mar 13, 2024
3:45pm5:11pm
 
Directors:

Carina Mia Wong, Alex Simmons

Executive Producer:

Laurene Powell Jobs, Davis Guggenheim, Lizzie Fox, Casey Meurer, Nicole Stott, Jonathan Silberberg, Cristina Costantini, Darren Foster

Producer:

Jennifer Wood, Krista Manis, Carina Mia Wong, Alex Simmons

Cinematographer:

Peter Alton, Michael Lockridge, Madeleine Peters

Editor:

Alex Simmons, Rebecca Adorno Dávila

Sound Designer:

Catherine Hood, Tim Haber, Annie Medlin, Carl Welden

Music:

Dan Deacon

Principal Cast:

Dexter, Cloud, Abby, Miranda, Kate, Max, Luisa (formerly Alex), Eli, Adelaide, Judson

Additional Credits:

Field Producer: Katy Dierks, Production Coordinator: Tommy McCarthy, Production Assistant: Jesse Mico, Assistant Camera: Tim Haber, Garrett Hanson, Adam Marquez, Alexandra Roberts, Additional Photography: Cassandra Giraldo, Carina Mia Wong, Alex Simmons, Lead Assistant Editor: Lucas Bugbee, Co-Editor: Dan Crow, Music Editor: Chester Gwazda, Finishing Producer (Final Frame): Julia Sub, Finishing Assistant Editor: Claudia Ramirez

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For all things SXSW 2024, click here!

Punk AF ‘Secret Mall Apartment’ (SXSW 2024) Living in art.

SXSW 2024 color logoSECRET MALL APARTMENT

Secret Mall Apartment SXSW 2024

In 2003, eight Rhode Island artists created a secret apartment inside the busy Providence Place Mall and lived there for four years, filming everything along the way. They snuck in furniture, tapped into the mall’s electricity, and even constructed a wall, smuggling in more than two tons of cinderblock. Far more than just a wild prank, the secret apartment became a deeply meaningful place for its inhabitants.


In SECRET MALL APARTMENT, Jeremy Workman brings SXSW 2024 audiences a fun doc filled with hush-hush happenings and punk rock actions. Inside Providence Place Mall, between the years 2003 – 2007, magic happened.

It all started when four artists lost their creative space. Adriana Valdez Young, Andrew Oesch, Jay Zehngebot, and Michael Townsend decided to do something no one had ever thought of. After noticing the odd construction of Providence Place Mall, they took their artistic exploration to an entirely new level, quite literally. Upon discovering unused space in the building, they defied authority and moved into the mall.

The clandestine operation led by Michael, whose footage from an early digital camera comprises most of the film, is nothing short of badass. The never-before-seen footage gives us all the goods, from planning to creation, including the earnest acrobatics of moving furniture purchased at The Salvation Army. With handheld cement blocks, triggered alarms, and pure gumption they created a piece of art and dwelling. The group acknowledges their white privilege in their ability to get away with this stunt.

The film is not simply a story of their mall apartment but the impactful works they created throughout the North East, like making a tape art outline of those lost in NYC on 9/11. This feat took a total of five years. These artists’ cloak-and-dagger work (often fleeting in their existence) taps into humanity at its finest. The irony of The Providence Place Mall’s current state will not be lost on the audience. Most likely, it will give SXSW 2024 a simultaneous headshake and chuckle. SECRET MALL APARTMENT fully embraces the artistic essence of “Damn the Man.”


Director:

Jeremy Workman

Film Screenings

Mar 8, 2024
9:45pm11:16pm
 
Mar 8, 2024
10:15pm11:46pm
 
Mar 10, 2024
10:45pm12:16am
 
Mar 16, 2024
11:00am12:31pm

For all things SXSW 2024, click here!

 

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Kickass ‘BACKSPOT’ (SXSW 2024) goes hard

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BACKSPOT

backspot SXSW 2024

Competitive cheer is no joke. The athleticism and dedication involved are higher than most people understand. In my day, alongside the big bows and toothy smiles were broken arms, knocked-out teeth, and concussions. They go hand in hand. D. W. Waterson‘s SXSW 2024 film BACKSPOT dives head first into the world of tumbling, trophies, and tenacity through a mental health lens.

Riley works her ass off for a spot on a professional cheer squad. In her efforts to be the best, she pushes personal relationships and her sanity to their limits.

The script beautifully balances the hyper-competitiveness with moments of teenage joy but leans heavily into the reality of the sport. The intense rehearsals, the backbiting, and the called-out misogyny all present equally. BACKSPOT unapologetically exposes the importance of mental health in sports. It’s a thin line between winning and breaking, passion and obsession.

Evan Rachel Wood plays coach to the more elite team. Playing Eileen McNamara, she is no-nonsense, hardass. You are 100% buying what she’s selling. Devery Jacobs gives audiences a whip-smart, compassionate, and nuanced performance as Riley. She’s a self-aware young woman battling the complexities of her inherited anxiety and perfectionism. Riley goes to the extremes, whether in practice or escapism. Jacobs captures the internal tug-of-war of emotions.

Waterson’s editing is fantastic. It undeniably enhances the film. BACKSPOT is a great companion watch for the Isabelle Fuhrman headliner, THE NOVICE, and while that film focuses on college rowing, the ruthless principals are the same. Waterson’s directorial debut delivers a strong new voice and clear vision in storytelling.


D.W. Waterson

D.W. Waterson (Filmmaker)
D.W. Waterson (they/them) is a Toronto-based, award-winning, non-binary/queer filmmaker and world-touring electronic music artist. D.W. is the creative force behind the 6 million-viewed, 40+ time award-winning digital series THAT’S MY DJ (Seasons 1-3). They have been DJing and throwing parties in the Toronto underground for ten years, and have opened for artists such as Peaches and Idris Elba.
 
Waterson’s work has garnered a Canadian Screen Award Nomination, five Best Director awards as well as Noteable’s 2017 Director of the Year award. Named a Resident at the 2022 TIFF Filmmaker Lab, D.W.’s debut feature film BACKSPOT had its world premiere at TIFF 2023. Alongside directing and producing, D.W. also created original electronic tracks to accompany the film.

Kick-Ass, Hard-Hitting, Queer Cheerleading Drama In Theaters Nationwide May 2024
 
Executive Produced by Elliot Page
Starring Devery Jacobs and Evan Rachel Wood

For all things SXSW 2024, click here!

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‘CREEP BOX’ (2024) is massively disturbing

CREEP BOX

CREEP BOX Poster

If you’re a paranormal enthusiast, you’ve heard of the average ghost tour. If you’re a little more intense, you download the Ghost Radar app and casually track color-coded spirits wandering in your vicinity. But, if you’re serious about the other side, book a psychic guided tour on the Queen Mary for your first wedding anniversary, paying extra for the EVP Spirit Box seance, like I did. 5 stars. Highly recommend. Patrick Biesemans’ CREEP BOX pits science and grief against each other in a disturbing and psychologically unsettling manner.

CREEP BOXDr. Franklin Caul has created a simulated consciousness with the dead. The DOJ wants it, but Caul has ulterior motives. The tech uses data from the deceased to have conversations or seek answers. In the mix is a swirl of overlapping thoughts and confusion that get under your skin. You cannot help but listen to them, and they are chilling. Caul observes that when suicide is the cause of death, the deterioration of self slows.

Adam David Thompson (Here Alone) plays the voice of Adam. His interpretation of an unseen character gets under your skin. He is nothing short of magnificent. Geoffrey Cantor carries CREEP BOX will ease. As Caul delves into the mind of a particular simulation, closing in on a personal agenda, Cantor’s humanity seeps through the academic shell. Geoffrey Cantor’s stoic nature perfectly matches Caul’s turmoil. He settles into unresolved trauma. It’s a fantastic performance.

CREEP BOX stillWhat might sound crazy is that this tech already exists. Customers can pay several different companies worldwide to build an AI version of their past loved ones. A recent Sundance documentary, ETERNAL YOU, is entirely about these services and their potential effects, good and bad. CREEP BOX takes these concepts down the rabbit hole, gladly stepping into the darkness and staying there.

In CREEP BOX and ETERNAL YOU, things change once the entity you communicate with appears sentient. Questions of ethics and the potential emotional damage of these interactions hang like a black cloud above the viewer. It’s a film that will undoubtedly mesmerize anyone who has suffered from grief. It instills wonder, curiosity, and pure terror. CREEP BOX will haunt you whether you like it or not.


Creep Box next screens at April’s Philip K. Dick Film Festival, which takes place at The Museum of the Moving Image in New York City.

SXSW 2024 packs a punch. Here are 18 films we’re excited to see!

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SXSW 2024 promises to kick up the coolness factor with more content than ever. This year films from every genre and corner of the world assemble to provide festival audiences thrills and chills, laughter and loss, mysteries and mayhem. Cinephiles look to SXSW for cool, creative, and wow films they can discuss all year. The 2024 edition will not disappoint. Here is a list of films we’re keeping our eyes on.

DICKWEED

Dickweed SXSW 2024

Two people got kidnapped. One man lost his dick. No-one got any money. This heist-gone-horribly-wrong led one Newport Beach detective on an international manhunt for the most twisted criminal he’d ever hunted. In 2012, Michael, a local weed dispensary owner, got home from work and plopped down on the sofa like any other weeknight. Three hours later he was zip-tied and eating dirt as three men tried to beat him into admitting where he’d buried the million dollars. And he would have gladly told them rather than endure what happened next. The only problem was, he hadn’t buried a million dollars, and after they tortured him and left him to die, he still had no idea who these men were.

I know. This sounds more like a mockumentary than a real-life occurrence. I had to go back and check twice to make sure I was reading the category correctly. SXSW 2024 documentary Dickweed delivers one of the most insane true-crime stories you will ever witness. Twists and turns and utterly unbelievable, this mysterious case will bewilder and entertain. Jonathan Ignatius Green does not disappoint. Get ready to tell everyone about this film, and be prepared for them to think you’re making it all up.

Director/Writer: Jonathan Ignatius Green (The Pez Outlaw, Social Animals

Producers: David Ricksecker, Jefferis Gray

Executive Producers: Amy Bandlien Storkel, Bryan Storkel

Running Time: 90 minutes

Film Screenings

Mar 9, 2024
2:30pm4:00pm
 
Mar 12, 2024
6:45pm8:15pm
 
Mar 12, 2024
7:15pm8:45pm
 
Mar 14, 2024
5:45pm7:15pm
 
Mar 14, 2024
 
6:15pm7:45pm

ADRIANNE AND THE CASTLE

Adrianne and the castle SXSW 2024

Inventive and whimsical, Adrianne & The Castle is a true story of great love and loss. Alan St-George is a mascot-maker and artist in rural Illinois who hand-made an ornate and elaborate castle with his late wife Adrianne. Since her death in 2006 he continues to put the finishing touches on Havencrest Castle, which stands as a “temple” dedicated to their transcendent love.

In one of the most stunning love stories ever told, director Shannon Walsh introduces us to a couple like no other, whose fairytale relationship lives on in an extraordinary mansion. 

Director: Shannon Walsh (The Gig Is UpIllusions Of Control) 

Producer: Ina Fichman (Fire of Love, The Oslo Diaries)

Running Time: 86 mins

Film Screenings

Mar 9, 2024
9:15pm10:41pm
 
Mar 11, 2024
5:45pm7:11pm
 
Mar 11, 2024
6:15pm7:41pm
 
Mar 13, 2024
11:15am12:41pm
 
Mar 13, 2024
11:45am1:11pm

TIMESTALKER

Timestalker SXSW 2024

“Timestalker” follows hapless heroine Agnes through time as she repeatedly falls for the wrong guy, dies a grim death, gets reincarnated a century later, before meeting him again and starting the cycle anew. It is one story told over many periods, all with the messy thrills and spills that come with daring to follow your heart. Or maybe your loins…
Agnes’ only hope in avoiding this violent fate is by finally reaching spiritual enlightenment; but how can she ever wise up when she’s destined to be a fool for love? Some lessons are just too hard to learn in one lifetime.

As a self-proclaimed Whovian, you had me at time-hopping. But a unique twist on angsty love is one of the many reasons why audiences come to SXSW 2024. This genre obliterating narratives promises to be one of the year’s best. And if you aren’t already familiar with Alice Lowe, boy are you in for a treat.

Directed by: Alice Lowe
Written by: Alice Lowe
Staring: Alice Lowe, Jacob Anderson, Aneurin Barnard, Tanya Reynolds, Nick Frost

Film Screenings

SXSW 2024
 
Mar 11, 2024

9:45pm11:21pm


AUDREY

Audrey SXSW 2024

Ronnie Lipsick (Jackie Van Beek), a former soap star and self-proclaimed Mother of the Year, gave up her acting career 18 years ago due to an unplanned pregnancy. Now she runs a suburban performing arts school, with a husband who has lost his zest for life, a youngest daughter(Hannah Diviney) who appears indifferent, and an ungrateful eldest daughter whom Ronnie (Josephine Blazier) tried to mold into the success she always wanted. When Audrey falls into a coma after an accident, Ronnie takes on her daughter’s identity, getting a second chance at the life she always desired.

Darkly funny and in three distinct acts of wackiness, AUDREY is everything you want it to be and way more.

Director:

Natalie Bailey

Screenwriter:

Lou Sanz

Principal Cast:

Jackie Van Beek, Josephine Blazier, Hannah Diviney, Jeremy Lindsay Taylor

Film Screenings

Mar 10, 2024
2:30pm4:07pm
 
Mar 11, 2024
5:15pm6:52pm
 
Mar 11, 2024
5:45pm7:22pm
 
Mar 15, 2024
2:15pm3:52pm

RESYNATOR

resynator


In unearthing the Resynator, the revolutionary synthesizer her late father invented in the 1970s, filmmaker Alison Tavel not only revives his mission to share it with the world, she unexpectedly forges a deep bond with the father she never got the chance to know. What starts as a curious resurrection of her dad’s invention soon becomes an insatiable, globe-trotting quest to unearth an authentic portrait of a man she never met. Featuring Peter Gabriel, Fred Armisen, Gotye, Grace Potter and more.

Director:

Alison Tavel

Principal Cast:

Alison Tavel, Grace Potter, Peter Gabriel, Jon Anderson, Fred Armisen, Money Mark, Gotye, Mike Gordon, Brian Kehew, Christian Castagno

Film Screenings

Resynator at Alamo Lamar 4

Mar 10, 2024

6:00pm—7:36pm

Resynator at Rollins Theatre at The Long Center

Mar 13, 2024

6:00pm—7:36pm

Resynator at Satellite Venue: AFS Cinema

Mar 16, 2024

12:00pm—1:36pm


MALTA

Malta

Set in Bogotá, this captivating female character study narrates the story of a young Colombian woman who dreams of escaping her suffocating urban reality and traveling the world. However, an unexpected relationship with an unlikely man will make her question her true motives for leaving. 

A quiet purpose-seeking film with relatable themes is all you need to know about Malta. It will hit you no matter your personal background.

Director:

Natalia Santa

Principal Cast:

Estefanía Piñeres, Patricia Tamayo, Emmanuel Restrepo, Diego Cremonesi, Ángela Rodríguez, Edwin Riveros, Tonatiuh Ramírez , Raúl Cuellar

 

Film Screenings

Mar 9, 2024

2:15pm—3:52pm

Malta at Violet Crown Cinema 3

Mar 9, 2024

2:45pm—4:22pm

Malta at Violet Crown Cinema 2

Mar 11, 2024

3:15pm—4:52pm

Malta at Violet Crown Cinema 4

Mar 11, 2024

3:45pm—5:22pm

Malta at Alamo Lamar 8

Mar 14, 2024

9:45pm—11:22pm

Read More →

‘VESELKA’ (2024) doc follows a restaurant entering the global stage

VESELKA:
THE RAINBOW ON THE CORNER
AT THE CENTER OF THE WORLD

VESELKA: THE RAINBOW ON THE CORNER AT THE CENTER OF THE WORLD

New York City’s beloved Ukrainian restaurant Veselka is best known for its borscht and varenyky, but it has become a beacon of hope for Ukraine. As the second-generation owner Tom Birchard reluctantly retires after 54 years, his son Jason faces the pressures of stepping into his father’s shoes as the war in Ukraine impacts his family and staff.


The first time I ate at Veselka, I’d only lived in New York for six months. A friend of mine, a lifelong New Yorker, walked us in at 1 am. We were sober but sleepy. The palpable energy of the packed wood-paneled room woke us up before a dish was served. I remember being a little awed by the fragile ecosystem – here, Wall Street players were sitting shoulder to shoulder with grinning grandmothers. Warm chatter and the smell of fried onions filled the space. That environment, that first bowl of borscht at Veselka, was one of the many little moments that helped me feel at home in a busy, sometimes uncaring city.

Michael Fiore’s documentary, Veselka: The Rainbow on the corner at the center of the world, takes the viewer into both the history and heart of the beloved Ukrainian restaurant. With the February 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, the restaurant finds itself catapulted onto a transformational crossroads. Already tested by the global pandemic, its owner, Tom Birchard, hands the reins to his son, Jason. Jason finds himself at the helm of a world-famous family business, trying to put his own stamp on the restaurant while understanding its rapidly evolving role in both the local and global Ukrainian community.

VESELKA_Press ShotThe documentary is by turns uplifting and shattering. Most powerfully, it is a stark reminder of the human costs of ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war. Unbelievably, this week will mark 2 years since Russia’s invasion and escalation of the conflict. While the war may not be at the forefront of the public conscious in 2024 to the same degree as it once was, it remains a constant for the staff and families at Veselka. This is not an overseas battle for them – these are their loved ones and families fighting and dying while the world moves on to the next crisis.

As a leader, Jason Birchard is equal parts toughness and warmth. His determination for his staff and community is inspiring.  Early in the Russian invasion, Veselka hosts Mayor Adams and his delegation to advocate for additional support for Ukraine. Watching this scene gives the viewer the rare experience of seeing an elected official being written off by a constituent in real-time. This superficial political moment stands in stark contrast to Veselka’s kitchen, which is humming with empathy and support.

Veselka: The Rainbow on the corner at the center of the world is many things. A  reminder of a brutal ongoing conflict. A challenge to the audience to remember how far the support of individuals can go in the face of global needs. A testament to the grit and determination behind a family business….And a reminder that you’ve really been craving borscht lately.


In Theaters This Friday 
February 23rd, 2024

Written, Produced, and Directed by Michael Fiore

Narrated by Golden Globe Award-winner David Duchovny (“The X Files”)
Score by Ryan Shore, featuring Grammy Award-winning saxophonist David Sanborn (“Lethal Weapon”)

Poster designed by Neil Jamieson (TIME “Person of the Year” cover artist – feat. President Zelensky)

Featuring interviews with father-son owners of Veselka Tom and Jason Birchard, additional Veselka staff as well as footage of New York Mayor Eric Adams and Governor Kathy Hochul


For more of Sam’s reviews, click here!

Review: ‘LAST PARTY’ (2024) shines in its camera work.

LAST PARTY

In Nicolas Dozol‘s LAST PARTY, one final hoorah to celebrate high school graduation takes a weird turn when four of its attendees experience subtle hallucinations.

Last Party (2024)Cleverly choreographed camera work by Aurel Ganz makes us think the film is one long take. Just as impressive is the actual shot list. 28, to be exact. It is one hell of a visual feat. The flip side of these takes is the narrative feels draggy even at 110 minutes. The sci-fi element does not seem necessary to the plot. Ultimately, it goes nowhere.

Last Party (2024) final scenePerformance is solid from our four main leads, each one bombarded by misogyny, judgment, and outright hateful behavior. LAST PARTY might be more successful as a series. There is much needed in character development, although the breadcrumbs are there. It feels more like a treatment for a larger project than a stand-alone piece.


“Last Party” the feature film debut of Swiss and French filmmaker Nicolas Dozol will make its US debut at Laemmle Monica Film Center from February 9 -16th in Santa Monica.  The film is being distributed by LA-based Synergetic and is the first feature film produced by the young Swiss company Lights Rush.

 

A mystery coming-of-age story, part horror, part fantasy, part thriller, the film takes place during a high school graduation party where four teenagers in the midst of an existential crisis are confronted with their angst. When they suddenly find themselves locked up, they wonder if it might be their last night ever. The film is choreographed by 28 long takes, giving the illusion of a single real shot and was shot in just five days.

“Last Party”, a New Breed Entertainment production, is directed by Nicolas Dozol, written by Leah Ladoux, Paul Tomasini, Chloe Vittenet and Dozol, and produced by Mathilde Errand and Dozol.  The film stars breakout newcomers Lucie Cecchi, Remi Gerard, Uma Condolo and Teddy Hardy.  Cinematography is by Aurel Ganz.


For more French film reviews on RND, click here!

Slamdance 2024: Peter Oh’s ‘LOVE AND WORK’ – a parallel what-if of haunting hilarity

slamdance 2024

LOVE AND WORK

Love And Work Slamdance 2024

Writer-director-editor-producer-cinematographer and obvious showoff Pete Ohs brings his latest genre buster, LOVE AND WORK, to Slamdance 2024. Reteaming with Will Madden and Stephanie Hunt from festival darling Jethica, this new film leans further into the absurd. Once again, gifting us with striking black-and-white cinematography, a voiceover hands us the immensely intriguing, near-future plot where AI has taken all the jobs and those seeking employment are outlaws.

Diane and Fox seek advice from a trusted local elder as he regales them with tales from his grandfather and the elusive concept of a weekend. Those who dare go against the grain find hobbies forced upon them as punishment. The backward nature of the plot sneaks up on you. It may not be so backward after all.

Stephanie Hunt plays Diane with an earned “cool girl” attitude that is infectious. Will Madden as Fox is a beautiful mix of awkward and charming. Their chemistry is electric.

Charles Watson‘s original songs are folksy bangers. There is a dry whimsy that I can only equate to British humor. A tongue-in-cheek look at societal norms and how humanity fumbles through the search for purpose and personal connection, LOVE AND WORK is a hilarious what-if and one terrifying step from reality.

  • Director: Pete Ohs
  • Screenwriter: Stephanie Hunt, Will Madden, Pete Ohs
  • Producer: Pete Ohs
  • Cast: Stephanie Hunt, Will Madden, Frank Mosley, Alexi Pappas, John S. Davies
  • Year: 2024
  • Runtime: 74 minutes
  • Language: English
  • Country: USA
  • Premiere: World Premiere
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Subtitle Language: English
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For all things Slamdance 2024 head here

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