Set over one summer, the film follows precocious six-year-old Moonee as she courts mischief and adventure with her ragtag playmates and bonds with her rebellious but caring mother, all while living in the shadows of Walt Disney World.
Kenzo creative directors Carol Lim and Humberto Leon have tapped independent American film-maker Sean Baker ('Tangerine') to write and direct an original short film featuring the brand's Spring collection for men and women.
Clarence Williams III,
A teenage girl with nothing to lose joins a traveling magazine sales crew, and gets caught up in a whirlwind of hard partying, law bending and young love as she criss-crosses the Midwest with a band of misfits.
A New York woman (who doesn't really have an apartment) apprentices for a dance company (though she's not really a dancer) and throws herself headlong into her dreams, even as the possibility of realizing them dwindles.
With only the plan of moving in together after high school, two unusually devious friends seek direction in life. As a mere gag, they respond to a man's newspaper ad for a date, only to find it will greatly complicate their lives.
Director Sean Baker and co-writer Chris Bergoch met Mya Taylor at the Village at Ed Gould Plaza, an LGBT community center on McCadden Place in Hollywood. The Village is located close to the intersection of Santa Monica Blvd and Highland Avenue in Hollywood, where most of the action of the film takes place, and the center is visible in the scene involving the Parsimonious John (his car is parked across the street). See more »
The cameraman and camera's shadow can be seen on the ground and taxi cab as Razmik drags out the vomiting drunks from his cab. See more »
Madd Man (Instrumental)
Written by BrainDeaD
Performed by BrainDeaD
Courtesy of Media Men Group IL Publishing
In association with Reel Muzik Werks, LLC See more »
friends and family on an iphone
Greetings again from the darkness. It's hard to imagine a better choice for opening night of the 4th annual Oak Cliff Film Festival. After all, this year's theme is the "No Wave Movement" of the late 1970's, and writer/director Sean Baker's most recent film (and a Sundance favorite) is the perfect complement. Co-written with Chris Bergoch and filmed entirely on iPhone 5s' (with cinematic apps), this gritty, no-frills film spotlights real problems of real people on a real day on the real streets of Hollywood and Los Angeles.
Personally, I haven't seen many (ok, any) films that focus on two transgender prostitutes (both, persons of color). However, the exciting thing is that the story pays little attention to the vocation of Sin-Dee and Alexandra, and is more a story of friendship, heartbreak, and the sub-cultures that make up a particular community of the L.A. area. This is not the glitzy/celebrity side of Hollywood, but rather the underbelly of a melting pot city where the paths of transgender streetwalkers and Armenian cab drivers intersect.
Sin-Dee (Kiki Kitana Rodriguez) and Alexandra (Mya Taylor) are opposite personality types, but clearly good friends as they chat while splitting a donut in the opening scene. We quickly learn that Sin-Dee is fresh out of jail after serving 28 days, and she doesn't react well to Alexandra's news that their pimp (and Sin-Dee's boyfriend) Chester (James Ransone) has been cheating with a "natural" woman (played by a very talented Mickey O'Hagan) while she was incarcerated. A woman scorned provides the energy of the film as Sin-Dee tracks down this mysterious girl whose name starts with a "D". It also provides new meaning for dragging someone all over town (kudos to Ms O'Hagan for the physicality and bruises).
The sassy banter is filled with brutal put-downs and smart-ass comebacks, as the three actresses play off each other as if loaded with short-fused fireworks. The story with taxi driver Razmik (Karren Karagulian) shows a family man drawn like a magnet to the world of Sin-Dee and Alexandra he even finds a reason to skip out on Christmas Eve dinner with his family. His mother-in-law Ashken (Alla Tumanian) is most suspicious of his activities, and that leads to the frenetic and hilarious confrontation at Donut Time.
Many individual scenes are funny, while others are tension-filled. There is even a scene in Razmik's cab featuring veteran actor Clu Gulager ("The Virginian"), and Armenian celebrity Arsen Grigoryan plays another taxi driver. The acting throughout is strong and humanistic, and the iPhone photography is shocking in its depth and range we would never suspect the "equipment" being used. This approach allowed for the organic feel of the street – think of Banksy making a movie clandestine with no sets (or permits). Baker's style is reminiscent of John Waters and John Cassavetes, and that's quite a compliment. The film also features the pitch perfect description of Los Angeles: "a beautifully wrapped lie".
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