› Filmmaker Shannon Murphy
› Doc Filmmaker Jeff Orlowski
› Cedric Cheung-Lau on Mtns
› Alex Winter on Making Docs
› Aust. Filmmaker Jennifer Kent
› Shadow Director Zhang Yimou
Find more of our interviews ›››
Stay Well 😷 Theaters + Streaming on the 2021 Schedule⇣
"Once it's done, there's a great void waiting for me… and that scares the shit out of me." Blue Finch Films UK has released an official UK trailer for He Dreams of Giants, the "sequel" to the infamous filmmaking documentary Lost in La Mancha. That doc film (which debuted in 2002) captured Terry Gilliam's failed attempt to make a Don Quixote picture, and is well known as a doc that intimately captures a project falling apart. But, as everyone knows, he eventually did finish making the film in 2018. A harrowing 30-year quest to bring Don Quixote to the screen finds director Terry Gilliam battling his personal demons. Or are they only windmills? Follow the iconic director Terry Gilliam as he fights to finish his elusive passion-project. Fifteen years after Lost in La Mancha (2002), Keith Fulton & Louis Pepe come back to follow Gilliam's new (successful) attempt at filming The Man Who Killed Don Quixote (watch the trailer). This looks damn good.
"Let's get outta here!" Friends make all the difference in the world. Summer with Mrs. Von Mausch is a short film written & directed by David Pomes that's finally available online via Vimeo. This premiered years ago but can now be seen below and it's an amusing 14 minute watch. Molly Learner stars as Summer, a 13-year-old girl whose father is ill-prepared for his daughter's New York City visit - and for her developing an unlikely friendship with his eccentric next-door neighbor, played by Annie McGreevey. "With humor and poignancy, Summer with Mrs. Von Mausch is a timely yet timeless tale of moving past loneliness and isolation, as two entirely different women bridge the generation gap and affirm their individuality." The performances are a bit rough, but the film does have a fun Ferris Bueller's Day Off vibe to it at least. Enjoy.
"Why do you live like this? The windows, the lights, the traps…" Signature Entertainment from the UK has unveiled a new UK trailer for an indie living-in-seclusion horror-thriller titled Rose: A Love Story, which initially premiered at last year's London Film Festival. The film, which also goes under the simple title Rose, marks the feature directorial debut of filmmaker Jennifer Sheridan. Gripped by a violent, terrifying illness, Rose lives in seclusion with her husband, but the arrival of a stranger shatters the fragile refuge they have built. The film stars Sophie Rundle (from "Bodyguard", "Jamestown", "Peaky Blinders", and The Midnight Sky) as Rose, along with Matt Stokoe, Nathan McMullen, and Olive Gray. This seems very eerie and mysterious, and I'm intrigued to find out more about what's going on with them in the woods. Have a look.
"We are not afraid. We are organized and united." A festival promo trailer is available for the documentary film titled Luchadoras, made by cinematographers / filmmakers Paola Calvo & Patrick Jasim. This film is premiering at the 2021 SXSW Film Festival coming up this month, playing in the "Global" category at the fest. Luchadoras portrays the courageous female wrestlers of Ciudad Juárez, Mexico (see Google Maps), a city known for its very high murder rate against women - who in the ring and in their daily lives fight to redefine the image of what it means to be a woman in Mexico. Everyone knows and loves the Netflix show "Glow", but this is a real-life look at some badass Mexican women who put their lives on the line to fight and wrestle and remain strong together. This looks fantastic! The perfect film to share with the SXSW audience.
"Something happened at the speakeasy." A trailer has arrived for an indie sci-fi thriller titled The Tangle, from actor / filmmaker Christopher Soren Kelly making his feature directorial debut. Described as a "lyrical new science-fiction film" and quotes in the trailer say it's "a chess game of a film" that's both ingenious and ambitious, a complex story intertwining sci-fi with meticulous filmmaking. The film is set in a future where microdrones have been invented, filling the air, the water, and our blood. "In this world, it is impossible to keep a secret anywhere but in your S.O.L. (the "Secure OnTangle Line"), a quantum encrypted hard drive implanted in your brain." The plot follows a murder investigation involving secret government agents and The Tangle creators and more. Starring Joshua Bitton, Christopher Soren Kelly, Jessica Graham, Nicole da Silva, Anil Kumar, Mary Jane Wells, and Bel Deliá. This looks cool, I'm curious to watch.
"You look at Mike, and there's not a line wasted… He is such an astonishing artist." An early promo teaser trailer has debuted for an indie documentary project called Mike Mignola: Drawing Monsters, from filmmakers Jim Demonakos & Kevin Konrad Hanna. The doc profile focuses on comic book artist & creator Mike Mignola, best known for creating Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. They've just launched a new Kickstarter campaign, hence the teaser, with plans to finish up later this year. Mike Mignola: Drawing Monsters "tells the definitive story of one of the most influential and important comic book creators of all time," including "never-before-seen interviews conducted with the legendary creator at his studio, drawing demonstrations, behind-the-scenes footage from comic book conventions," and more. This looks like it can break out of the by-geeks-for-geeks mold of docs like this and give more people a chance to learn about Mignola and his art.
"The Golden Bear goes to a film which has that rare and essential quality of a lasting art work. It captures on screen the very content and essence, the mind and body, the values and the raw flesh of our present moment in time." The 71st Berlin Film Festival (also known as just Berlinale) has wrapped up, and the small set of prizes were revealed this weekend, including the winner of the coveted Golden Bear for Best Film. That top prize was given to a Romanian dark comedy film called (in English) Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn, directed by Radu Jude. The festival, usually held in February, transitioned to a virtual press + industry only event this past week, showing premieres online and in the cinema for the jury only. Jude's film is a clever, wacky, made-during-the-pandemic-so-everyone-wears-masks critical commentary about sex and society. It's a good win for originality, though not my fave film of the fest. Full list of 2021 prizes below.
"What if I choose death instead?!" "You're not ready to die, so fight for your life." RLJE Films has released an official trailer for a crazy body horror punk rock film called Spare Parts, now set for release in June this summer. Made by Canadian filmmaker Andrew T. Hunt, the film follows an all-girl punk band named Ms. 45 - they get kidnapped after a show in the wrong part of town. They wake up to find that they’ve had their limbs replaced with crude mechanized weapons, and their only chance for survival is to fight in a dirty arena for the amusement of a blood-hungry cult. The film stars Michelle Argyris, Emily Alatalo, Jason Rouse, Kiriana Stanton, Chelsea Muirhead, Ryan Allen, and Julian Richings. It's described as "if Sushi Typhoon's Machine Girl gets a make-over with the staging props of Mad Max." We featured the teaser trailer for this last year, and the film will finally be available to watch this summer. Get ready to rumbleee!!
"It's like they were trying to blend in." Check out this short film from animation filmmaker Joe Bennett, a strange animated trip into the world of Park Rangers. With an appearance by Bigfoot, too! Just wait until you see him. Derecho is a 10 minute short film, featured by Vimeo. It was originally presented by Cake on FX. As a slow building terror builds at a lonely park ranger outpost, two rangers are forced to test the limits of their humanity. Featuring the voices of Kate Berlant, John Early, Ted Travelstead, and Felipe di Poi Tamargo. The animation style is quite unique and it gets even better when the dashes of red show up. This is a must-watch-until-the-very-end short film, it all makes more sense once you get through it. Beware.
Be afraid, be very afraid. There's something going on out there, something stirring in the shadows, and it's something we need to be worried about. Fascism is back. It's reared its ugly head too many times in too many countries recently. And filmmakers definitely have something to say about this, especially German filmmakers. Je Suis Karl just premiered at the 2021 Berlin Film Festival, the latest feature from German filmmaker Christian Schwochow (of November Child, Cracks in the Shell, West, Paula) and screenwriter Thomas Wendrich, and it's an unnerving, frightening, realistic portrayal of the rise of fascism. From the moment it started, I immediately had knots in my stomach, knowing what was coming. Much like watching Titanic or United 93, you know what's about to happen and I felt that intense dread watching it all play out.
"This night… will open our eyes." RLJE Films has released an official trailer for an indie titled Shoplifters of the World, from a British director of music docs named Stephen Kijak (Stones in Exile, We Are X, If I Leave Here Tomorrow, Sid & Judy). Set in the summer of 1987 in Denver, Colorado, the film follows four friends. One crazy night in the life of four friends reeling from the sudden demise of iconic British band The Smiths, while the local airwaves are hijacked at gunpoint by an impassioned Smiths fan. Starring Helena Howard, Ellar Coltrane, Elena Kampouris, Nick Krause, James Bloor, Thomas Lennon, and Joe Manganiello. This isn't the only Smiths tribute film (also: The More You Ignore Me) but it does look like this'll be good. "Featuring an incredible soundtrack – including 20 songs from The Smiths – Shoplifters of the World is a glorious ode to the craziness of the '80s and the power of music to change people's lives."
"We've summoned Middle-Earth's finest to celebrate the cinematic experience…" In celebration of the 20th anniversary of Lord of the Rings (which kicked off with The Fellowship of the Ring in December 2001), and as part of their "Support Local Cinemas" campaign, the Alamo Drafthouse is hosting special event celebrations at their movie theaters around the nation coming up at the end of March / beginning of April. In addition to in-theater screenings of the three films, key members of the cast are participating in Q&As each night. The reunion Q&As will be initially exclusive to theatrical screenings of the new 4K remasters of The Lord of the Rings Trilogy. However, as part of their new "Support Local Cinemas" campaign, Alamo Drafthouse is making these Q&A presentations available for all theaters around the globe entirely for free. Which is great! I love these films with all my heart and have been looking forward to revisiting them, they are timeless and still as extraordinary as ever. Frodo & Sam forever. More info on the events + Q&A below.