4 items from 2016
“Lace Crater” follows twenty-something Ruth (Lindsay Burdge) who’s just getting over a breakup as she and her friends head to the Hamptons for a weekend of mild debauchery at their friend Andrew’s parents’ summer home. With all the bedrooms in the main house taken, Ruth agrees to sleep in the guest house that is supposedly haunted. One night while everyone is having a good time, Ruth stumbles to her bed and ends up encountering a mysterious figure – a burlap sack-wearing, light-sensitive otherworldly entity, Michael (Peter Vack). Ruth and Michael have a one-night stand, but when she returns home, she develop a ghostly Std, with symptoms that include frequent vomiting, light sensitivity, and spewing black ooze. When her friends all but abandon her, she’s left in isolation to deal with her problems and must decide on her own whether she wants to return to normal society. The film »
- Vikram Murthi
Throw a dart at a map of the U.S. and it’s fairly certain you’ll land on a city that hosts a film festival. And if less-established festivals can’t take credit for introducing critically acclaimed works into the marketplace a la Telluride, Sundance and SXSW, many of them can be credited for being well-attended, attracting top-shelf talent and being a regional platform for smaller films that might not otherwise see the light of day. One such event is the Nashville Film Festival, originally established in 1969 and running April 14-23 this year.
The city has always been known as the world capital of country music — a genre with a more conspicuous presence than ever in the pop charts, not to mention Grammy’s top categories. But its role as a cultural hub has extended beyond country to pop, the fine arts and cuisine. Celebs such as Nicole Kidman, »
- Dana Feldman
Toplining the casting bill are Orlando Bloom, Malin Akerman, Michael Chernus, Marc Maron, Elizabeth Reaser, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Jake Johnson, Aya Cash, Dave Franco, Jane Adams and Hannibal Burress – who recently joined the ranks of Paramount’s Baywatch opposite Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron.
Written, directed and executive produced by Swanberg, the indie drama represents a passion project for the creator, and retains elements – albeit slack elements – of mumblecore filmmaking. That is, in essence, a creative process that favors low-key techniques and improvised dialog in order to nurture a lax and ultimately more believable viewing experience. Lena Dunham, the Duplass brothers and Lynn Shelton are among the few creators that still employ such a technique.
As for the general setup of Easy, Netflix’s new series »
- Michael Briers
"Mumblecore" master Joe Swanberg is headed for Netflix. The filmmaker behind micro-indie films including Kissing on the Mouth, Hannah Takes the Stairs and Uncle Kent has scored an eight-episode, straight-to-series order for comedy Easy. The half-hour single-camera comedy series will, in mumblecore fashion, write, direct and exec produce the series. Easy is described as an anthology that explores diverse Chicago characters as they fumble through the modern maze of love, sex, technology and culture. The series will feature appearances from Orlando Bloom, Malin Akerman, Michael Chernus, Marc Maron, Elizabeth Reaser, Gugu Mbatha-Raw,
- Lesley Goldberg
4 items from 2016