1-20 of 23 items from 2014 « Prev | Next »
4 Minute Mile
Director: Charles-Olivier Michaud
Sales: Double Dutch Intl.
Director: Eran Creevy
A young American couple is caught between two ruthless criminals.
Sales: Im Global
Director: Shawn Christensen
Feature based on 2012 Oscar-winning short “Curfew,” about a man forced to look after his precocious 11-year-old niece. Market premiere.
Sales: Electric Entertainment
Director: A. J. Edwards
The story of Abraham Lincoln’s youth. Market premiere.
Sales: Electric Entertainment
Director: Tod “Kip” Williams
Producers: Richard Saperstein, »
- Variety Staff
To some, the sun-drenched, tourist-magnet city of Maitland, Florida may seem like an odd place for an art-house movie theater and film festival. Disney World is right around the corner, so who wants to go sit in a dark room and watch a John Cassavettes film? But, contrary to these misconception, Maitland does have a thriving movie-loving community: a thirsty, film-savvy coterie. The Enzian, the quirky single-screen theater in which the Florida Film Festival is rooted, and around which the local community has grown and thrived, acts as a sort of Mecca for Central Florida filmgoers. And this isn't a group of old people wearing flower-pattern shirts and flip flops with socks, to usurp another bias. A couple hundred people showed up at 11am to hear indie filmmaker Shawn Christensen talk about how he expanded his Oscar-winning short "Curfew," which played the Florida Film Festival in 2012, into a full-length feature, »
- Greg Cwik
The announcement comes as sales agents scramble to assemble fresh line-ups for the Croisette at a time when new product is thin on the ground.
Before I Disappear director Shawn Christensen based the film on his 2013 Academy Award-winning live action short Curfew and stars alongside Fatima Ptacek, Emmy Rossum, Paul Wesley, Ron Perlman and Richard Schiff.
ICM Partners and Verve represent North American rights to the story of a man who must look after his niece on a night when he becomes embroiled in a fight between his two employers.
“We are absolutely thrilled to be representing Before I Disappear,” said Electric’s head of international distribution Sonia Mehandjiyska. “It’s a crowd-pleasing film with a great cast and wonderful performances and we at Electric look forward to bringing this award-winning »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeremy Kay)
Fleshing out this feature-length film from his Oscar-winning short film, Curfew (2012), writer-director Shawn Christensen's Before I Disappear is by no means an enjoyable experience, because -- well -- suicide is certainly not the most joyful of subjects. This is very much a mood piece that is intended to transport the audience into the piss-filled gutter of Richie's worthless existence. While Christensen seems to enjoy wallowing in the pervasive ugliness of Richie's life, fleeting moments of magic realism hint at a possibility of a life that could become more vibrant and cheery. (A hauntingly surreal hallway party scene set to David Bowie's "Five Years" and a bowling alley dance sequence choreographed to Goodnight Radio's "Sophia So Far" are the film's strangest -- maybe even strongest -- moments.) Richie's destiny has already been set in motion and there is only one possible outcome for this story, so to expect any »
- Don Simpson
Earning more points for visual panache than emotional truth, writer-director-star Shawn Christensen’s “Before I Disappear” chronicles one long, dark night of the soul for a suicidal screw-up whose need for salvation could only have been made more obvious if the filmmakers had forced him to drag a deadweight behind him the whole time. Which, in a manner of speaking, they have: From the moment our tortured hero gets saddled with a hyper-precocious niece who has a thing or two to teach him about love, responsibility and family, this pseudo-gritty descent into a shady New York underworld reveals its soft, contrived center. Too overwrought to really convince or resonate, yet assembled with enough flair to work as a solid calling card for its debuting helmer, this feature-length expansion of Christensen’s Oscar-winning 2013 short, “Curfew,” should continue to make festival inroads after its audience-award win at SXSW. Theatrical prospects look niche-y. »
- Justin Chang
Given the subarctic winter we've been experiencing in the Northeast this year, South by Southwest (SXSW), which takes place annually in balmy Austin, Texas, was something we were looking forward to even more than usual. Warm weather, spicy Mexican food, and the hottest movies imaginable all added to create a thoroughly thawing experience.
There wasn't a single Omg-you-have-to-see-this movie like there was last year, when "Short Term 12" made its debut, but the festival's lineup was quietly powerful, full of movies that were easy to miss, but at your own peril. There were a handful of loud, shout-y debuts, but some of those missed the mark completely, leaving room for the smaller movies to reach in and steal my heart.
So, a rundown of all of the movies we saw at SXSW -- some were odious, some were wonderful, but all of them we were very happy to watch... and »
- Drew Taylor
The Sting Called Love: Christensen’s Debut Rife with Melodramatic Cliché
Shawn Christensen, who won an Academy Award for his 2013 short film, Curfew, expands his award winning triumph to feature length with Before I Disappear. Something gets a little lost in the translation, however, in this tale about a vagabond hipster loser who actually inspires less empathy the more time we experience his dilemma on screen. It takes the right blend of melancholy personality to strike the correct balance of the loveable, love-struck loser (i.e., Joaquin Phoenix in Her) and Christensen, who casts himself in the lead, doesn’t feel quite right, though character and narrative development are partially to blame for the ambivalence as well. It’s a tale that requires a strong, emotional component to be successful, and its glaring absence only becomes more and more apparent as it shuttles us off into the vacuum of the hopeful ending. »
- Nicholas Bell
SXSW Film Festival Audience Awards have been announced, with Before I Disappear winning the award in the Narrative Feature Competition and DamNation earning the audience award in Documentary Spotlight.
SXSW announced the Audience Award-winners from the Narrative Feature Competition, Documentary Feature Competition, Narrative Spotlight, Documentary Spotlight, Visions, Midnighters, Episodic, SXGlobal, Festival Favorites and Design Award categories. The Audience Award for 24 Beats Per Second will be announced on Monday, March 17.
Before I Disappear, which won the audience award from the Narrative Feature Competition, came into SXSW with a fair amount of momentum. Directed by Shawn Christensen, the character study is based off his Oscar-winning short film, Curfew. The movie stars Christensen as Richie, a depressed man who is forced to take care of his eleven-year-old niece, Sophia (Fatima Ptacek). Before I Disappear also stars Emmy Rossum (Shameless), Paul Wesley (The Vampire Diaries) and Ron Perlman (Sons of Anarchy).
Congrats to the »
Ron Perlman saw a glimpse of his future in Shawn Christensen's “Curfew,” an award-winning short the former musician wrote, starred in and directed. “The short had me from the first frame all the way to the last,” Perlman told TheWrap last weekend at South by Southwest, where “Before I Disappear,” Christensen's feature based on the short, premiered. “It was as perfect a film as I'd ever seen, and I've seen a few dozen films. It went from being ‘will you do this?’ to ‘What do I gotta do to work with this guy?” See photos: SXSW: Inside TheWrap and Indiegogo's Live. »
- Lucas Shaw
I managed to screen 14 movies in four days at the South By Southwest film festival this year. Two were fantastic. Most were great. Some were below average. And only one of the bunch was downright unwatchable. Somehow, the worst film I screened managed to win the top Audience Award, which was announced Saturday afternoon in Austin. That would be Shawn Christensen.s Before I Disappear, an insufferable redemption drama written by, directed by and starring Christensen. A triple threat in every sense of the word, Christensen plays a suicidal loser roped into helping his alienated sister (Emmy Rossum) as she deals with her own legal problems. The feature length film is an expansion of Christensen.s Oscar-winning short, Curfew. I have no idea what people see in this concept. Richard Schiff, Fatima Ptacek and the usually great Ron Perlman . who also snoozed through the similarly disappointing 13 Sins at SXSW . co-star. »
Shawn Christensen’s Before I Disappear was named the audience award winner in the narrative feature competition at the South by Southwest Film Festival. Based on Christensen’s Oscar-winning 2012 short film Curfew, Disappear stars the writer-director as a man, hitting a low point, who is asked to look after his 11-year-old niece. In the documentary feature competition, the audience award winner, also announced today, was Diana Whitten’s Vessel, a portrait of abortion activist Rebecca Gomperts. Diego Luna’s Cesar Chavez, a drama about the famed labor organizer, which Lionsgate and its Pantelion Films are releasing theatrically March 28,
- Gregg Kilday
Shawn Christensen has conquered South by Southwest just one year after he won an Oscar. Christensen's “Before I Disappear,” a feature length film based on his Oscar-winning short “Curfew,” won the audience award for Best Narrative Feature Saturday at the Austin-based festival. Christensen stars in the film alongside 14-year-old Fatima Ptacek, both of whom reprised their roles from the short. The Oscar enabled the former musician to recruit a stellar cast for his feature debut, including Emmy Rossum, Paul Wesley and Ron Perlman. The film chronicles a depressed young man who must look after his niece for a few hours. »
- Lucas Shaw
“Vessel,” Diana Whitten’s film about a pro-choice activist, received a special jury recognition for political courage in the documentary competition earlier this week in addition to today’s documentary feature prize.
“Before I Disappear,” which Christensen starred in, wrote and directed based on his Oscar-winning 2012 short film “Curfew,” won in the narrative feature competition, while “Cesar Chavez,” a drama about the titular labor organizer, took the award in the narrative spotlight category.
Prizes were also given in the documentary spotlight (“DamNation”), visions, midnighters, episodic, SXGlobal, festival favorites and design categories. The 24 Beats Per Second category will be announced on Monday following Saturday screenings.
Additional showings have been scheduled on Saturday — the final day of SXSW Film – for all audience award winners. »
- Maane Khatchatourian
The 2014 SXSW Film Festival comes to a close today and just a few days after the awards presentation of their jury prizes, they've announced this year's Audience Awards, selected by those who attended screenings in the festival's 10 venues across the Austin, Texas area. Shawn Christensen's Before I Disappear , expanded from his Oscar-winning short "Curfew," won the Audience Award in the Narrative Feature Competition, while Diana Whitten's Vessel won the same award in the Documentary Feature Competition. The jury gave their awards in those respective categories to Sarah-Violet Bliss & Charles Rogers. Fort Tilden and Margaret Brown's documentary The Great Invisible . This was a departure from last year when both the jury and audience awards went to Destin Daniel »
Shawn Christensen's 2012 short film Curfew was a film-festival darling, winning 15 awards including a 2013 Oscar. I haven't seen Curfew, but certainly want to if it's as good as the feature-length version of the same story, Before I Disappear.
Christensen's debut feature is quirky, but I mean that in a good way. A genre-bending mix of family drama, thriller, love story and surreal fantasy, Before I Disappear is the dark story of Richie (Christensen), a broke and depressed drug addict adrift in New York City. He spends his time hanging out in seedy clubs and earning a meager living as a janitor. His job only compounds his depression when he cleans a restroom and finds the body of an overdose victim, a beautiful woman who reminds him of his dead girlfriend.
One afternoon, a phone call interrupts Richie's halfhearted attempt to kill himself. Long estranged from his family, he's surprised that »
- Don Clinchy
Before I Disappear premiered at SXSW on Monday, March 10, and is writer/director/star Shawn Christensen’s first feature film – it is based off his Oscar-winning short film Curfew. In the film, Rossum (Shameless) plays Maggie, a young mother who asks her estranged and depressed brother, Richie (Christensen) to watch her daughter for a few hours. Wesley (The Vampire Diaries) plays Gideon, a character entangled in Richie’s rocky life.
Surreal pic from @B4IDisappear. One of my favorite scenes from the film. @paulwesley pic.twitter.com/R3Pk6YsxCb
— Shawn Christensen (@dreamsick) March 7, 2014
Wesley and Rossum spoke to Uinterview outside the premiere after-party, where they mingled with guests and listened to a playlist curated by Christensen containing music from the film »
Writer-director-star Shawn Christensen's Oscar-winning 2012 short "Curfew" stuffs a substantial amount of emotion and personality into 20 minutes. "Before I Disappear," Christensen's polished feature-length treatment of the same scenario, contains all the strong moments that distinguished "Curfew" while surrounding them with a lot of superfluous additions. Carried along once again by Christensen's fragile turn as a suicidal young New Yorker named Richie and the vivacious adolescent Fatima Ptacek as Richie's fiercely individualistic niece, "Before I Disappear" features several moments of genuine emotion in an otherwise underwhelming plot involving the main character coming out of his shell. It's a heartfelt journey, but we've seen it before, without the excess distractions. Nevertheless, the movie provides some welcome context to the events from the short that eloquently define Richie's downtrodden sensibilities. While "Curfew" opened with the character in a blood-soaked »
- Eric Kohn
“One night in Harlem, sour, aging Mat reunites with his younger brother Alan, just before Alan heads out for a long-planned vacation with his live-in girlfriend Farrah. Only days later, much sooner than expected, Alan returns home from his vacation to find his apartment commandeered by Mat, Mat’s girlfriend and Mat’s girlfriend’s son. As doors slam and the power gives out and the threads of family fray, a mystery lingers: why has Alan returned home without Farrah,” reads the official description.
Most moviegoers don’t pay short films any attention, except perhaps when filling out their Oscar ballots, which surely explains why ShortsHD seizes the opportunity of its annual theatrical Academy-nominated shorts programs to tubthump so heavily for the format itself, interjecting soundbites from brevity-inclined storytellers like Matthew Modine and 2013 winner Shawn Christensen (“Curfew”) between the live-action contenders. But such self-promotion can’t disguise the fact that, with one exception — Xavier LeGrand’s “Just Before Losing Everything” — this global sampling indicates a middling crop this year, representing the promise of what these filmmakers might do in the future over excellence in the present.
After sitting through a handful of polite remarks from filmmakers who have either made shorts or simply agreed to be interviewed (“12 Years a Slave” director Steve McQueen shares thoughts on the artistic process), audiences start their journey with Danish nominee “Helium,” a terminal-illness fable directed by Anders Walter, »
- Peter Debruge
Sundance just ended, and we are already preparing for the next big film festival, South By Southwest. Not too long ago, the festival announced a few of the films premiering this year, but now they’ve announced the main slate. The midnight selections and some inevitable late-breaking additions are still to be announced, but this should be more than enough to get you excited. Along with many World Premieres, and Sundance favorites like Richard Linklater’s Boyhood and Gareth Evans’ The Raid 2, the line up also includes an anniversary screening of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, and an extended Q&A screening of The Grand Budapest Hotel with Wes Anderson. SXSW 2014 runs March 7 through 15 in Austin, Texas. Check out the line up after the jump.
Narrative Feature Competition
Eight world premieres, eight unique ways to celebrate the art of storytelling. Selected from 1,324 films submitted to SXSW 2014. Films screening in Narrative »
1-20 of 23 items from 2014 « Prev | Next »
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