Posted by Susan Doll on April 18, 2011
The 13th annual Sarasota Film Festival (SFF) ended yesterday after a weekend filled with events and honors for two stars, Geena Davis and Christopher Plummer, and a producer, Sarah Green. I attended the SFF the previous weekend, and with the festival’s tag line, “Immerse Yourself,” urging me on, I plunged in for a gratifying festival experience.
Unlike Telluride, Sundance, or Toronto, the SFF is a regional film festival, and part of its agenda is to support regionally based films by offering a showcase for movies shot in the Sunshine State. Whether its home-grown horror films with questionable acting or thoughtful meditations on social issues at the local level, I am attracted to regional filmmaking because of the way character and story are so intrinsically bound to locale. Regionalism is important because it can put a fresh face on familiar genres, or bring the concerns and fears of the under-represented to light. Florida has a history of supporting regional filmmaking, most notably the work of Victor Nunez, a native son who has done his home state proud with such films as Ruby in Paradise and Ulee’s Gold.
This year’s Sarasota Film Festival included a handful of narrative films shot along Gulf Coast locales. Mangrove Slasher 2, directed by Sean Haitz, follows a shadowy character with a machete who stalks a group of partiers in the mangrove swamps. More of a send-up of B-movie clichés than a bona fide horror film, MS 2 depends on its locations to create the eerie isolation central to the slasher subgenre. The musical drama Beautiful Noise by Steve Tatone is the story of a young singer who searches for an aging pop star from the 1960s. In addition to these feature films, the festival worked with local organizations to present documentaries that revealed challenging issues facing the community, including The Secret World of Recovery (addiction), Through the Tunnel (high-school football as a tool for integration back in the day), and The Observer and the Observed (mental health).
Posted by David Kalat on November 20, 2010
Lillian Travers (Edith Story) makes a surprise visit to her boyfriend Dr. Cassadene (Sidney Drew). But the surprise is on her when she catches him in what sure seems like a comprising position with a wealthy widow. He makes the requisite apologies, they make up, and it all goes pear shaped again when he blows their next rendez-vous, once again caught with the same widow. She gives him a third chance—and as she comes out of her house to meet him, there he is, entangled in the clutches of three fawning women. If this were any other movie, you’d expect Lillian to blow her top and walk out on him, continuing the cycle of sitcommy complications that you’ve come to expect by this point. Oh, but A FLORIDA ENCHANTMENT is not any other movie. And let us uncover its fabulousness in stages:
Posted by Susan Doll on November 15, 2010
TCM’s original documentary series Moguls and Movie Stars continues tonight with Episode 3, “The Dream Merchants,” which chronicles the rise of the major studios in the 1920s—the so-called Silver Age of Hollywood. By this time in American film history, Hollywood had been established as the center of the industry, though films continued to be made in New York, where some production companies maintained offices and studios. I am enjoying this detailed and well-organized series, particularly the lesser-known clips and photos as well as the interviews with descendents of the original moguls.
My only complaint is the short shrift given to other American cities that were important in motion picture history. Some cities were hometowns to film pioneers who made major contributions as far back as the 1890s while other locales vied with Hollywood to be the hub of the film industry during the 1910s. Chicago, my adopted hometown, was mentioned briefly in the first two episodes of Moguls and Movie Stars, but considering that the first large-scale studio was built here by William Selig or that the first bona fide cowboy star, Broncho Billy Anderson, originally shot his westerns on the city’s North Side, I thought it deserved more attention. I have already written about Chicago’s early film history in previous posts, so I won’t revisit that topic. Instead I thought I would touch on another city’s contributions to the early film era—a locale completely omitted from Moguls and Movie Stars.
MovieMorlocks.com is the official blog for TCM. No topic is too obscure or niche to be excluded from our film discussions. And we welcome your comments on our blogs and bloggers.
See more: facebook.com/tcmtv
See more: twitter.com/tcm
3-D Action Films Actors Actors' Endorsements Actresses animal stars Animation Anime Anthology Films Art Direction Art in Movies Australian CInema Autobiography Avant-Garde Aviation Awards B-movies Beer in Film Behind the Scenes Best of the Year lists Biography Biopics Black Film Blu-Ray Books on Film Boxing films British Cinema Canadian Cinema Character Actors Chicago Film History Cinematography Classic Films College Life on Film Comedy Comic Book Movies Crime Czech Film Dance on Film Digital Cinema Directors Disaster Films Documentary Drama DVD Early Talkies Editing Educational Films European Influence on American Cinema Experimental Exploitation Fairy Tales on Film Faith or Christian-based Films Family Films Film Composers Film Criticism film festivals Film History in Florida Film Noir Film Scholars Film titles Filmmaking Techniques Films About Gambling Films of the 1960s Films of the 1980s Food in Film Foreign Film French Film Gangster films Genre Genre spoofs HD & Blu-Ray Holiday Movies Hollywood history Hollywood lifestyles Horror Horror Movies Icons independent film Italian Film Japanese Film Korean Film Literary Adaptations Martial Arts Melodramas Method Acting Mexican Cinema Moguls Monster Movies Movie Books Movie Costumes movie flops Movie locations Movie lovers Movie Reviewers Movie settings Movie Stars Movie titles Movies about movies Music in Film Musicals Outdoor Cinema Paranoid Thrillers Parenting on film Pirate movies Polish film industry political thrillers Politics in Film Pornography Pre-Code Producers Race in American Film Remakes Revenge Road Movies Romance Romantic Comedies Satire Scandals Science Fiction Screenwriters Semi-documentaries Serials Short Films Silent Film silent films Social Problem Film Sports Sports on Film Stereotypes Straight-to-DVD Studio Politics Stunts and stuntmen Suspense thriller Swashbucklers TCM Classic Film Festival TCM Underground Television The British in Hollywood The Germans in Hollywood The Hungarians in Hollywood The Irish in Hollywood Theaters Thriller Trains in movies Underground Cinema VOD War film Westerns Women in the Film Industry Women's Weepies