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Tribeca unveils StoryLab participants

Tribeca unveils StoryLab participants
Filmmakers John Battsek, Molly Thompson, Kurt Engfehr, Rachel Boynton, Sloane Klevin and Amir Bar Lev are among the filmmakers who be leading this year’s Tribeca Film Institute third annual StoryLab in Brooklyn, New York.

The participants for this year’s Tfi/A&E IndieFilms StoryLab, which kicked off on Tuesday, are: Vaishali Sinha for Ask The Sexpert; Babak Khoshnoud and David Fine for Free From What; David Romberg for Man Of The Monkey; David Schisgall for Theo, Who Lived; and Keith Maitland for Tower.

In partnership with A&E IndieFilms, the three-day workshop provides one-on-one mentorship, masterclasses, industry discussion and networking opportunities for documentary filmmaking teams.

Participants will also get involved with an intense case study breaking down the story format of Amir Bar Lev’s The Tillman Story.
See full article at ScreenDaily »

'Ask the Sexpert', 'Man of the Monkey' Among This Year's Tfi/A&E IndieFilms StoryLab Participants

'Ask the Sexpert', 'Man of the Monkey' Among This Year's Tfi/A&E IndieFilms StoryLab Participants
Read More: The Top 8 Pitches at the Hot Docs Forum: What Worked and What Didn't The Tribeca Film Institute, in partnership with A&E IndieFilms, has just announced the projects selected for the third annual StoryLab for documentary filmmakers, which helps five filmmaking teams in various stages of production through one on one mentorship as well as master classes, industry discussions and networking opportunities. This year the workshops will be led by notable filmmakers including A&E IndieFilms Svp Molly Thompson ("The Tillman Story," "The September Issue"), film director/producer Rachel Boynton ("Big Men," "Our Brand is Crisis"), film editor/producer Kurt Engfehr ("Bowling for Columbine," "Fahrenheit 9/11"), film editor Sloane Klevin ("Taxi to The Dark Side") as well as film producer John Battsek ("Searching for Sugarman," "The Imposter") and film director Amir Bar Lev...
See full article at Indiewire »

Emmys 2013: 'Behind The Candelabra,' Bob Newhart score at Creative Arts Awards

A week before the 65th annual Primetime Emmy Awards rock the entertainment industry, nearly 80 awards were scheduled to be presented at the Creative Arts Emmys ceremony Sunday (Sept. 15) at the Nokia Theatre. Fxx will air an edited version of the Creative Arts Emmys ceremony on Sept. 21 at 9 p.m. Et.

HBO's "Behind the Candelabra" unsurprisingly took home a number of awards, while Bob Newhart won his first career Emmy for guest-starring on CBS' "The Big Bang Theory."

Here is the full list of winners:

Outstanding Guest Actress In A Drama Series - 2013: Carrie Preston, as Elsbeth Tascioni on "The Good Wife"

Outstanding Guest Actor In A Drama Series - 2013: Dan Bucatinsky, as James Novack on "Scandal"

Outstanding Guest Actress In A Comedy Series - 2013: Melissa Leo, as Laurie on "Louie"

Outstanding Guest Actor In A Comedy Series - 2013: Bob Newhart, as Arthur Jeffries/Professor Proton
See full article at Zap2It - From Inside the Box »

Live From the Creative Arts Emmys

Live From the Creative Arts Emmys
Nearly 80 awards are scheduled to be presented at the Creative Arts Emmys ceremony today at the Nokia Theatre, beginning shortly after 4 p.m Pacific. We’ll be live-blogging the highlights, so keep coming back for updates.

Fxx will air an edited version of the Creative Arts Emmys on Sept. 21 at 9 p.m. Eastern/Pacific.

Past, present and future “Community” showrunner Dan Harmon is joining series star Joel McHale in presenting the first quartet of Emmys, including three for casting and one for guest comedy actress. The final two Emmys, for reality host and reality program, will be announced by next week’s Primetime Emmys host, Neil Patrick Harris.

A couple handfuls of juried Emmys were announced in August, including kudos for “Adventure Time,” “Portlandia,” “The Simpsons” and the Alex Gibney documentary “Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God.”

4:05 p.m.: “Tonight, we honor all the creative
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Mitchell Block Direct: Vol. I Issue 4: Alex Gibney, Paperman, and The Academy Awards Animation Shorts Nominations

Vol. I Issue 4

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Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God

Directed by Alex Gibney

In Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God, Oscar®-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney examines the abuse of power in the Catholic Church through the story of four courageous deaf men who, in the first known case of public protest, set out to expose the priest who abused them. The film follows a cover-up that winds its way from the row houses of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, through the bare ruined choirs of Ireland's churches, all the way to the highest office of the Vatican.

Like Woodward and Bernstein covering the story of Watergate, Gibney uses the keyhole of the first known protest against clerical sexual abuse in the Us to show that the Pope knew (or should have known) that there is wide spread child abuse within the ranks of Catholic priests, not just in the U.S. but worldwide. Not exactly a pretty picture. This powerful, beautifully crafted film builds a case that screams out for reform of an institution that, like our military, is run by men with little or no outside supervision. One feels that like Nixon after the proven Watergate charges, the Pope should resign along with others who have allowed this outrageous behavior and its cover up to be so institutionalized.

Gibney’s films have a logical clarity that reinforces their intelligence. Smart, clear and wrenchingly powerful they explore institutions and the people who are part of them. From governors to prison guards he shows little patience for lies and incompetence. The chain he establishes in Maxima Culpa links the victims to the priests to their supervisors and on to Rome to the office formally run by the man who is now the Pope. What can you say? They knew, they had to know, the links are compelling. Why would this institution shelter these men (and women) who were abusing children and in some cases adults? Who would tolerate this behavior? Why would the Church tolerate this behavior? Yet the cover up continues.

In a year of films dealing with institutions, such as government officials slowly trying to find a cure for HIV/AIDS, or the military dealing with women being abused, or the Israel army ignoring the rights of the provocative Palestinians or even government failures to act on global warming, this is the best and it should be one of the nominees.

The Filmmaker

Alex Gibney is the founder of Jigsaw Productions. An Oscar, Emmy, and Grammy Award-winning producer, he is well known for producing one of the highest grossing documentaries of all time, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.

His work as a writer and director includes the recent hit Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer, as well as the 2006 Oscar-nominated Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room and the 2008 Oscar-winning Taxi to the Dark Side. Alex attended the film program at UCLA.

Credits:

Director/Producer/Writer: Alex Gibney

Producers:Trevor Birney, Alexandra Johnes, Ruth O’Reilly, Kristen Vaurio, Jedd Wider, Todd Widler

Executive Producers: Jessica Kingdon, Sheila Nevins, Lori Singer

Writer: Mark Monroe

Cinematography: Lisa Rinzler

Original Music Composer: Ivor Guest

Editor: Sloane Klevin

Production Companies: Jigsaw Productions, Wilder Film Projects, Union Editorial

Distribution: Content Media, HBO Documentary Films, HBO

Paperman a short animated film by John Kahrs

Paperman is an original seven-minute-long short animated film produced by Disney Animation.

It tells the story of a lonely young man in mid-century New York City, whose destiny takes an unexpected turn after a chance meeting with a beautiful woman on his morning commute. Convinced the girl of his dreams is gone forever, he gets a second chance when he spots her in a skyscraper window across the avenue from his office. With only his heart, imagination and a stack of papers to get her attention, his efforts are no match for what the fates have in store for him.

Director John Kahrs was the animation supervisor on Tangled, an animator on Bolt and Ratatouille, and worked on Pixar’s The Incredibles, Mike’s New Car, Monsters, Inc., Toy Story 2 and A Bug’s Life. Kahrs now gets his break as a director at Disney. 14 years of work in the animation department at Pixar, that’s paying dues! Now, I understand why this “Disney” animation film looks and feels like a “Pixar” film. It’s brilliant, polished, and elegant and, like the Simpson short, silent. Expressive muted black and white images with a slight color tint in this perfect short film dramatizes love at first sight. Tasteful, romantic and above all beautifully executed, I look forward to Kahrs’ feature film debut. A little Pixar goes a long way and this work is expressive of adult feelings that any child could enjoy. No need to dumb the story down, it works for audiences of all ages. A perfect 10.

Original music by Christophe Beck (who has 105 scoring credits) this work is produced by Kristina Reed (from Disney) and Executive Produced by Pixar’s John Lasseter. Written by Clio Chiang and Kendrelle Hoyer, it shows that “less” can be plenty. Short films don’t get better than this!

Credits:

Directed by: John Kahrs

Produced by: Kristina Reed

Executive Producer: John Lasseter

Art Direction: Jeff Tuley

Written by: Chio Chiang and Kendelle Hoyer

Music by: Christophe Beck

Film Editing: Lisa Linder

Produced by: Walt Disney Animation

Distributed by: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Running time: 7:00

Short Notes and Update:

The Invisible War is on the New York Times' and Christian Science Monitor's and Newsweek's 10 Best Films of 2012. The Gate Keepers is on the Wall Street Journal’s 10 Best Films of 2012.

Academy announces 10 animated films shortlisted for the Animation Short Film Nomination

The Short Films and Feature Animation Branch Reviewing Committee viewed all 57 eligible entries for the preliminary round of voting at screenings held in New York and Los Angeles. I’ve seen all of the films and this is one of the strongest group shortlisted in years, from the elegant Pixar/Disney film Paperman to the wildly funny Simpsons’ Daycare. These films are a treat for the eyes and mind. Stunning, moving, original, powerful and frankly amazing they will both amuse and entertain and each of the 10 films is special. The styles range from traditional animation to computer designed. A number of students made it with entries which are testimony to their vigorous programs and their talent. This is a year where handicapping is impossible.

At screenings of the short listed films, Short Films and Feature Animation Branch members have selected three to five nominees from among these 10 titles for its nominations.

The 85th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Thursday, January 10, 2013, at 5:30 a.m. Pst in the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater.

Adam and Dog, Minkyu Lee, director (Lodge Films)

Web Link: https://vimeo.com/34849443

Length: 16 min.

Language: none

Country: USA

Combustible,Katsuhiro Otomo, director (Sunrise Inc.)

Web Link: None available

Length: 13 min.

Language: none

Country: Japan

Dripped, Léo Verrier, director (ChezEddy)

Web Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wk9keXSBbhY

Length: 8 min.

Language: none

Country: France

The Eagleman Stag, Mikey Please, director, and Benedict Please, music scores and sound design (Royal College of Art)

Web Link: https://vimeo.com/mikeyplease/eaglemanstag

Length: 9 min.

Language: none

Country: England

The Fall of the House of Usher, Raul Garcia, director, and Stephan Roelants, producer (Melusine Productions, R&R Communications Inc., Les Armateurs, The Big Farm)

Web Link: http://youtu.be/5So_E6yPW40

Length: 17 min.

Language: none

Country: USA

Fresh Guacamole, Pes, director (Pes)

Web Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQMO6vjmkyI

Length: 2 min.

Language: none

Country: USA

Head over Heels, Timothy Reckart, director, and Fodhla Cronin O’Reilly, producer (National Film and Television School)

Web Link: https://vimeo.com/timr/headoverheels

Length: 10 min.

Language: none

Country: England

Maggie Simpson in The Longest Daycare, David Silverman, director (Gracie Films)

Web Link: http://youtu.be/gV-NRwLV2qU

Length: 5 min.

Language: none

Country: USA

Paperman, John Kahrs, director (Disney Animation Studios)

Web Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jsoiEpuvTeQ

*note this about the technology in this film, but not a true trailer

Length: 7 min.

Language: none

Country: USA

Tram, Michaela Pavlátová, director, and Ron Dyens, producer (Sacrebleu Productions)

Web Link: http://youtu.be/a_QT-JaDswY

Length: 7 min.

Language: none

Country: French

______________________________________________________________________

Errata

Volume 1 Issue 3 In Chasing Ice the film was edited by Davis Coombe (and not Mark Monroe); Distributor (Us) Submarine Deluxe (not National Geographic).

______________________________________________________________________________

Block Doc Workshops in Los Angeles

The International Documentary Association will be hosting Documentary Funding and Documentary Tune Up Workshops with Block on February 9/10. http://www.eventbrite.com/org/169037034

Mitchell Block specializes in conceiving, producing, marketing & distributing independent features & consulting. He is an expert in placing both completed works into distribution & working with producers to make projects fundable. He conducts regular workshops in film producing in Los Angeles and most recently in Maine, Russia and in Myanmar (Burma).

Poster Girl, produced by Block was nominated for a Documentary Academy Award and selected by the Ida as the Best Doc Short 2011. It was also nominated for two Emmy Awards and aired on HBO. He is an executive producer of the Emmy Award-winning PBS series Carrier, a 10-hour series that he conceived & co-created. Block is a graduate of Tisch School and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business. He is a member of Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, the Television Academy, a founding member of BAFTA-la and has been teaching at USC School of Cinematic Arts since 1979. Currently Block teaches a required class in the USC Peter Stark Producing Program.

______________________________________________________________________

©2012Mwb All Rights Reserved All Rights Reserved. All information and designs on the Sites are copyrighted material owned by Block. Reproduction, dissemination, or transmission of any part of the material here without the express written consent of the owner is strictly prohibited.All other product names and marks on Block Direct, whether trademarks, service marks, or other type, and whether registered or unregistered, is the property of Block.
See full article at Sydney's Buzz »

Sundance Snow Daze

25 New Face composer and performer Gingger Shankar (right) with director Mridu Chandra outside the Main Street Transit Center. Shankar, Chandra and the Shanghai Restoration Project were part of Sundance’s New Frontiers with Himalaya Song, a New Frontiers multimedia performance piece that “explores this majestic mountain range and its interconnecting cultures as the region undergoes major environmental and ecological change. Featuring live narration by filmmaker Mridu Chandra and musical performances by musicians Gingger Shankar (vocals/double violin) and Dave Liang (piano/electronics), this live multimedia presentation combines modern sounds and ancient instruments with a cinematic journey through the Himalayan past and present, exploring folktales, mythological narratives, contemporary ways of survival, and tomorrow’s inevitable changes in the great melting glaciers.”

I’ve been coming to Sundance for almost 20 years, and I don’t remember snow as strong as was experienced last Friday. The Ifp house this year was three avenues up the mountain from Park,
See full article at Filmmaker Magazine »

2011 Sundance Film Festival Award Winners!

2011 Sundance Film Festival Award Winners!
The Jury, Audience, Next! and other special award-winners of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival were announced tonight at the Festival's Awards Ceremony hosted by Tim Blake Nelson (star of Flypaper which premiered in this year's Premieres section) in Park City, Utah. Highlights from the Awards Ceremony can be seen on the Festival website.

Films receiving Jury Awards were selected from four categories: U.S. Dramatic Competition, U.S. Documentary Competition, World Cinema Dramatic Competition and World Cinema Documentary Competition. All films in competition were also eligible for Sundance Film Festival Audience Awards as selected by Festival audiences. The U.S. Audience Awards presented by Acura were announced by Ray Liotta, and the World Cinema Audience Awards were announced by Joshua Leonard. Vera Farmiga announced the Best of Next! Audience Award.

Jury Prizes in Shorts Filmmaking were awarded to American and international short-form films on Tuesday, January 25. Other awards recognized at the
See full article at MovieWeb »

2011 Sundance Film Festival Award Winners

The Sundance Film Festival Juries have selected the winners of the 2011 awards. Since they give out so many awards, the list is extremely long. We shound be playing catch up on the festival now that it is over and things are a little less chaotic. In the meantime here are the winners.

The 2011 Sundance Film Festival Juries consisted of:

U.S. Documentary Competition: Jeffrey Blitz, Matt Groening, Laura Poitras, Jess Search, Sloane Klevin U.S. Dramatic Competition: America Ferrera, Todd McCarthy, Tim Orr, Kimberly Peirce, Jason Reitman World Cinema Documentary Competition: José Padilha, Mette Hoffmann Meyer, Lucy Walker World Cinema Dramatic Competition: Susanne Bier, Bong Joon-Ho, Rajendra Roy Shorts Competition: Barry Jenkins, Kim Morgan, Sara Bernstein Alfred P. Sloan Award: Jon Amiel, Paula Apsell, Sean Carroll, Clark Gregg -

2011 Sundance Film Festival Award Winners:

The Grand Jury Prize: Documentary was presented to How to Die in Oregon, directed by Peter D.
See full article at SoundOnSight »

2011 Sundance Film Festival Award Winners

The Sundance Film Festival Juries have selected the winners of the 2011 awards.  The big winner is Like Crazy, which won both the Grand Jury Prize (Dramatic) and a Special Jury Prize for actress Felicity Jones.  Naturally, Like Crazy already has a distribution deal in place with Paramount.  Circumstance, Martha Marcy May Marlene, and Pariah are a few of the other winners in the dramatic competition.Notable documentary winners include How to Die in Oregon, Buck, and Project Nim.  Click here for all of our coverage of Sundance, including reviews and distribution reports for these films and more.  Hit the jump for the full list of winners and the juries who handed out the awards. The 2011 Sundance Film Festival Juries consisted of: U.S. Documentary Competition: Jeffrey Blitz, Matt Groening, Laura Poitras, Jess Search, Sloane Klevin U.S. Dramatic Competition: America Ferrera, Todd McCarthy, Tim Orr, Kimberly Peirce, Jason Reitman World Cinema Documentary Competition: José Padilha,
See full article at Collider.com »

2011 Sundance Film Festival Award Winners

2011 Sundance Film Festival Award Winners
Tonight the Sundance Institute announced the award winners for the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. Like Crazy won the Dramatic Grand Jury Prize, and Circumstance won the dramatic audience award. You can find the full list of winners in the press release after the jump. 2011 Sundance Film Festival Announces Awards Happy, Happy, Hell and Back Again, How to Die in Oregon and Like Crazy Earn Grand Jury Prizes Audience Favorites Include Buck, Circumstance, Kinyawaranda and Senna to.get.her Awarded Best of Next! Audience Award Park City, Ut–The Jury, Audience, Next! and other special award-winners of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival were announced tonight at the Festival’s Awards Ceremony hosted by Tim Blake Nelson (star of Flypaper which premiered in this year’s Premieres section) in Park City, Utah. Highlights from the Awards Ceremony can be seen on the Festival website, www.sundance.org/festival. Films receiving Jury Awards were selected from four categories: U.
See full article at Slash Film »

Sundance juries announced, include America Ferrera and Jason Reitman

Sundance juries announced, include America Ferrera and Jason Reitman
The juries awarding prizes at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival, which kicks off Thursday in Park City, Utah, have been announced: The U.S. dramatic jury includes America Ferrera, who made her debut at the fest in 2002 with Real Women Have Curves, Hollywood Reporter chief film critic Todd McCarthy, cinematographer Tim Orr, Boys Don’t Cry director Kimberly Peirce, and Up in the Air director Jason Reitman. The U.S. documentary jury consists of Spellbound director Jeffrey Blitz, The Simpsons’ creator Matt Groening, My Country, My Country’s Laura Poitras, Jess Search of the Channel 4 Britdoc Foundation, and editor Sloane Klevin.
See full article at EW.com - Inside Movies »

Page 2: Harry Potter, Sundance, 47 Ronin, Banksy, Kung-Fu Panda 2, Natalie Portman, The Hobbit, Clint Mansell, The Wolverine and More

Page 2: Harry Potter, Sundance, 47 Ronin, Banksy, Kung-Fu Panda 2, Natalie Portman, The Hobbit, Clint Mansell, The Wolverine and More
What is Page 2? Page 2 is a compilation of stories and news tidbits, which for whatever reason, didn’t make the front page of /Film. After the jump we’ve included 46 (!?!) different items, fun images, videos, casting tidbits, articles of interest and more. It’s like a mystery grab bag of movie web related goodness. If you have any interesting items that we might've missed that you think should go in /Film's Page 2 - email us [1]! [2] The concept art for the "Tale of the Three Brothers" scene from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 has been released by designer Alexis Liddell on his blog [3]. [hpana [4]] Carl Erik Rinch's sword/samurai thriller 47 Ronin starring Keanu Reeves is prepping for a two-month shoot in Hungary. [screendaily [5]] Mini-lol: Jonathan Post [6] has developed a new technology that allows him to watch 3D television without the use of glasses. [engadget [7]] The 2011 Sundance Film Festival have announced the
See full article at Slash Film »

Sundance: Jury Members Are Susanne Bier, Matt Groening, Jason Reitman, America Ferrara, Kim Peirce

Sundance: Jury Members Are Susanne Bier, Matt Groening, Jason Reitman, America Ferrara, Kim Peirce
The Sundance Film Festival has filled out its jury roster for 2011: U.S. dramatic jury members are: America Ferrara, Todd McCarthy, Tim Orr, Kimberly Peirce and Jason Reitman. U.S. documentary jury members are: Jeffrey Blitz, Matt Groening, Laura Poitras, Jess Search and Sloane Klevin. World documentary jury members are: Jose Padiha, Mette Hoffman Meyer and Lucy Walker. World dramatic jury members are: Danish filmmaker Susanne Bier, Korean filmmaker Bong Joon-Ho and Moma's Rajendra Roy. Full release with bio info and the Alfred P. Sloan jury are below. 2011 Sundance Film Festival Announces Jury Members Sundance Alum Tim Blake Nelson to Host 2011 Sundance Film Festival Awards. Ceremony on January 29. Susanne Bier, Jeffrey Blitz, America Ferrera, Matt Groening, Clark Gregg, Bong Joon-Ho, Jose Padilha, Kim ...
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

Telling Tales of Nonfiction Filmmaking

  • IFC
Telling Tales of Nonfiction Filmmaking
Documentarians carve stories out of the ebb and flow of real life, making the struggles of a Canadian metal band into a rousing tale of standing by your dreams, or finding echoes of "A Chorus Line" in the backstage process of putting together a Broadway revival of the show. So it's no surprise that the 2010 Cinema Eye Honors, which took place on Friday in New York, were filled with their own anecdotes about nonfiction films and the process of making them.

The venerable Albert Maysles, in a salute to influential Canadian filmmaker Allan King, who passed away earlier this year, told the crowd how his first date with his wife was to see King's 1967 doc "Warrendale." Editor Sloane Klevin, presenting the award for Outstanding Achievement in Editing, in turn recounted how the back of her apartment faces that of Maysles, and how she often sees him at night, washing dishes,
See full article at IFC »

Film review: 'Red Meat'

Film review: 'Red Meat'
Occupying the mean-spirited terrain of "In the Company of Men" and "Your Friends & Neighbors," "Red Meat" serves up a slab of men behaving badly where women are concerned.

But first-time feature filmmaker Allison Burnett (a man) is no Neil LaBute, and his stagey portrait of guys who meet one Sunday a month to work out, eat red meat and brag of sexual conquests is a talkfest of major proportions with ultimately very little to say.

Straitjacketed by an over-reliance on flashbacks and voice-overs and awash in actorish performances, the low-budget indie production won't be generating any substantial select-site cravings.

Doing the male-bonding thing this particular Sunday are unrepentant jerk Stefan John Slattery) and nice-guy jerk Chris (Stephen Mailer), who happen to be joined by guest carnivore Victor (James Frain), a long lost acquaintance of Chris' who walks into their favorite barbecue joint.

After regaling their new recruit as well an eavesdropping waitress (Traci Lind) with tales of brazen braggadocio, the cocky Stefan and the over-intellectualizing Chris finally press Victor to come clean, and he easily outclasses his hosts with a spiritually redemptive story of his relationship with a terminally ill woman (Lara Flynn Boyle).

The film's constant shifts back and forth in time and excessive storytelling narration make for a trite and tedious viewing experience. Burnett, who also wrote the script, based it on three chapters of his own novel and the picture seldom manages to break free from those printed page origins.

He's somewhat more successful in the technical department. With the assistance of director of photography Charlie Lieberman ("Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer"), the picture looks a lot better than it sounds.

RED MEAT

Peninsula Films

A Treehouse Films presentation

Director-screenwriter: Allison Burnett

Producers: Liver Eberle, Marco Weber

Director of photography: Charlie Lieberman

Production designers: Frank Bollinger, Clare Brown

Editor: Sloane Klevin Music: The Blue Hawaiians Color/stereo

Cast:

Ruth: Lara Flynn Boyle

Victor: James Frain

Candace: Jennifer Grey

Connie the Waitress: Traci Lind

Chris: Stephen Mailer

Stefan: John Slattery

Running time -- 94 minutes

No MPAA rating

Film review: 'Little City'

Film review: 'Little City'
A few snappy lines and inspired sequences are the slim rewards for taking a spin in writer-director Roberto Benabib's feature debut "Little City", a fitfully involving romantic comedy with an eclectic cast that includes Jon Bon Jovi, Penelope Ann Miller and JoBeth Williams.

An upcoming Miramax release, "Little City" was shown as a work in progress Thursday to an enthusiastic audience at the opening night of the third annual Los Angeles Independent Film Festival. Set in San Francisco and reveling in promiscuous characters but surprisingly tame and lacking passion, the film obviously needs fine-tuning.

There's no help for the screenplay, however, which cruises through the lives of six fast-loving city types, including bartenders Kevin Jon Bon Jovi) and Rebecca Penelope Ann Miller), painter/cab driver Adam (Josh Charles), bisexual student Kate (Joanna Going), chef Nina (Annabella Sciorra) and lesbian art teacher Anne (JoBeth Williams).

Best friends Kevin and Adam welcome the arrival of single Rebecca at the local bar. Adam is having doubts about his girlfriend Nina, who we soon learn is sleeping with Kevin. Adventuresome Rebecca meets seductive older woman Anne, and they go to bed. Rebecca is not converted to girls but helps break up Anne's relationship with former student Kate.

Adam and Kate used to be an item, but he becomes involved with Rebecca after he breaks up with Nina. Kate wants him back. Kevin wants Nina. And so it goes in often-turgid dialogue scenes that are none-too-subtlely filmed within view of the most obvious Bay Area landmarks.

Although he's the least attractive, busy Adam is perhaps the most honest of the group in dealing with the opposite sex. Kate recaptures and then hurts Adam and he hurts Rebecca, who is genuinely in love with him.

Not to belittle the other performers, but Charles and Miller have the advantage of playing the only halfway agreeable characters.

Benabib unfortunately employs a distracting device where each of the principals have several monologues they address to priests, therapists, tape recorders and anonymous alcoholics.

LITTLE CITY

Bandeira Entertainment

Writer-director Roberto Benabib

Producers Beau Flynn, Stefan Simchowitz

Jeffrey L. Davidson, Ron Wechsler

Executive producers Cindy Cowan

Matt Salinger, Michael Sayles

Director of photography Randall Love

Editors Sloane Klevin, Norman Buckley

Production designer Don Defina

Casting Alyssa Weisberg

Color/stereo

Cast:

Kevin Jon Bon Jovi

Adam Josh Charles

Kate Joanna Going

Rebecca Penelope Ann Miller

Nina Annabella Sciorra

Anne JoBeth Williams

Running time -- 85 minutes

No MPAA rating

See also

Credited With | External Sites