The debut edition of The Rumpus Lo-Fi Film Festival unspools this coming Saturday, July 30, at the Brewery Arts Complex in Los Angeles. Encompassing four features and two panels, the one-day event is, according to author, filmmaker and The Rumpus founder Stephen Elliott, an extension of the literary site’s personality and ethos into the film festival world as well as a kind of a DIY battle cry. Frustrated by the festival rejection notices he was receiving for his third feature, After Adderall, Elliot surveyed other filmmakers about their festival submission experiences. He published the results in a much-debated blog post alongside an announcement that he was creating a festival for not only his film but others that skated below the… Read more
Youthful innocents relish playing the part of amateur cartographer for school assignments, drawing prats, or, even more fun, molding contours from papier-mache. Seven-year-old Prescott (Tom Sweet), the subject of Brady Corbet’s astonishing debut feature, The Childhood of a Leader, is no innocent. The film, adapted from Jean-Paul Sartre’s short story of the same title and co-scripted by Norwegian Mona Fastvold, charts his rocky path from angel in his church’s Nativity play to one of the signature faces of the diabolical: totalitarianism. The scene in which the boy slides his fingers across a wall map of Europe just as it was before the end of the Great War is a portent of its state and his place in it some 15-20… Read more
IFP, Filmmaker‘s parent organization, has announced their expansion to support television, digital, web, VR and app-based series at its upcoming IFP Film Week. Series showrunners and creators will take part in the IFP Project Forum, the only International Co-Production Market in the U.S. featuring stories for all platforms. As announced, after 37 years in Manhattan, IFP Film Week is moving across the river to Brooklyn. The event will set up shop in DUMBO anchored around its headquarters, the Made in NY Media Center By IFP. In recent years, IFP and Filmmaker Magazine have played a vital role in launching the careers many of today’s rising stars active in the television, new media and web series space, prompting the decision to expand… Read more
In The Seventh Fire, first-time director Jack Pettibone Riccobono follows the relationship between Rob, a gang leader on a Native American reservation, and his 17-year-old protégé, Kevin. Their connection becomes increasingly complicated when Rob heads to his fifth stint in jail. The film boasts an impressive set of executive producers in Terrence Malick, Natalie Portman and Chris Eyre. The Seventh Fire opens at the Metrograph in New York on July 22, and at the Laemmle Royal in Los Angeles on July 29. I talked to Riccobono about the difficulties of having a subject sentenced to jail time while shooting, presenting the film at the White House, and the relationship that Nicholas Britell’s score had with the editing.
In his latest video essay, Jacob T. Swinney goes the extra mile to highlight the Coen brothers’ use of green in their films by desaturating everything that isn’t green to black and white (or at least as close as possible).
Filmmaker Fede Alvarez made an impressive feature debut in 2013 with his uncompromisingly savage, Sam Raimi-approved remake of The Evil Dead, but it didn’t come close to preparing me for his extraordinary follow-up, Don’t Breathe. That film, which reunites Alvarez with his Evil Dead producers Raimi and Rob Tapert as well as co-screenwriter Rodo Sayagues, is a clinic in how to construct a perfect thriller – a Swiss watch of a movie that takes the audience in the palm of its hand in the opening scene and then squeezes hard for an hour and a half. The premise is elegantly simple: three amateur thieves (Jane Levy, Dylan Minnette, and Daniel Zovatto) break into the home of a blind war veteran… Read more
In Kate Plays Christine, which premiered earlier this year at Sundance, filmmaker Robert Greene tackles the story of Sarasota TV journalist Christine Chubbuck, who shot herself live on-air in 1974 and died 14 hours later. But rather than taking a straightforward documentary approach to Chubbuck’s story, Greene instead chronicles actress Kate Lyn Sheil’s preparation to play Chubbuck in a film that will conclude with her suicide. While Greene’s previous film Actress explored the real life of actress Brandy Burre, Kate Plays Christine relies on a constructed situation to which Sheil must act and react. Footage of Sheil preparing for the role are intercut with actual documentary footage of Chubbuck. Read Vadim Rizov’s interview with Greene here and watch the trailer below (courtesy of Vulture).… Read more
I’ve been writing, shooting and producing short films, about twenty of them, since 1999. I’ve also DP’d several shorts and a zombie feature. I enjoy assisting other filmmakers in North Carolina, where I live, and I’ve worked as AD over the last five years on… Read more
A few years ago I worked on a promo for a Jerry Springer-hosted dating show set in a soundstage-built TSA screening line. The concept involved potential dates in the queue afflicted with, shall we say politely, peculiarities – including a gentleman with a flatulence problem.… Read more
By the time most of the prominent guests, critics and industry hangers-on arrive at the Seattle International Film Festival every year, the show is almost over. The red carpet is rolled out for “gala” screenings during each of its four weekends, but the well-orchestrated influx… Read more
“The Last of the Mavericks” – that was the very appropriate title that the Portuguese Cinematheque gave to its November 2005 series on Michael Cimino (during which this interview was conducted). And all you needed was to see the director himself walk into the lobby… Read more