Category Archives: #TheWave

Note from Roger – Tower

Dear Cinephiles,

TOWER is flat out brilliant.  One of the best documentaries of the year.    And it’s also the most visually immersive unique visual experience.

I cannot recommend this spellbinding film more.  I’m attaching the NY Times review below which was a Critic’s Pick.

It plays tonight at 7:30pm at the Riviera Theatre.

See you at the movies!
Roger Durling

Click here for tickets

tower

‘Tower,’ About 1966, Before Mass Shootings Became Routine
By Manohla Dargis – The New York Times

The haunting documentary Tower revisits a 1966 mass shooting at the University of Texas at Austin that shocked the country. It may be difficult to comprehend the reaction to the horror of Charles Whitman, a 25-year-old student who shot more than a dozen dead, wounding more than twice as many. A cover story in Life magazine suggested just how alien the carnage seemed at the time, noting that during the rampage Whitman’s actions were “so outrageous, so hard to grasp, that people could not believe it.” Many more mass shootings later, it’s now tragically easy to believe.

You get a sense of just how brutal and absolutely foreign that violence must once have seemed in Tower. Directed by Keith Maitland, the movie is partly based on “96 Minutes,” an article by Pamela Colloff that ran in Texas Monthly in 2006, the 40th anniversary of the shooting. Most of the article was an oral history based on interviews that she skillfully pieced together for a mosaiclike remembrance. Mr. Maitland borrows this approach, drawing on first-person accounts, as well as archival and original sources. He’s also turned much of this material into walking, talking animations with the help of actors, an ingenious stroke that — at least at first — helps create some needed critical distance.

Whitman was one of the year’s big news stories alongside Vietnam. Time magazine put him on its cover, running a banner (“The Psychotic & Society”) across a photo of him — just another smiling guy in glasses — reading a newspaper, with a small dog at his side. In time, he was transformed into a popular culture touchstone in Peter Bogdanovich’s Targets, a 1968 thriller that drew on the incident; “The Ballad of Charles Whitman,” Kinky Friedman’s 1973 satirical song that frames the blood bath as an all-American story; and “The Deadly Tower,” a 1975 made-for-TV drama. By important contrast, Tower isn’t about Whitman; he isn’t its subject, star or selling point.

Tower also isn’t about why Whitman committed his atrocities or even how. There’s little information on him — his background, beliefs, history or health — in the documentary. His name is barely mentioned. He’s there throughout, though, represented as the unknown shooter in the frightened recordings of people phoning in reports; in police dispatch calls; in intermittent gunfire; and in the eerie puffs of gun smoke emanating from the university tower where he took position. He is a question mark, a lethal void whose immateriality makes an agonizing contrast to the men and women he shot, those who died as well as those who suffered and survived.

This shift in focus — from the perpetrator to the victims — doesn’t read as especially American or cinematic. (One of Hollywood’s most durable genres is the gangster movie, after all, not the victim picture.) And while there may be all sorts of sociopolitical and psychological explanations for why movies are so violent, it’s also just an easy way to keep people nervously waiting and watching. Mr. Maitland put in time as an assistant director on the TV series “Law & Order” and he understands how to narratively string out violence. The movie begins with Neal Spelce (Monty Muir), a journalist gutsily reporting from the scene while driving closer to it, an opener that creates instant tension.

The scene then shifts to Claire Wilson James (Violett Beane), a heavily pregnant freshman who is just finishing a coffee break with her boyfriend, Tom Eckman (Cole Bee Wilson). As they’re walking across campus, they are both hit. Claire goes down first, followed by Tom. They remain where they fall for an unbearably long time, creating a ghastly spectacle that becomes an emblematic tableau that Mr. Maitland returns to again and again, at times using news footage. He soon adds other victims and voices, including that of Aleck Hernandez Jr. (Aldo Ordoñez), a teenager on his paper route riding past the campus, his cousin perched on his bike.

The expressive animation was done via rotoscoping, a technique that involves tracing moving images by hand (as in Disney’s Snow White) or through software (as in Richard Linklater’s Waking Life). The results in Tower are extremely liquid, with each line incessantly ebbing and flowing, creating a vivid sense of life. The animation gives Mr. Maitland a lot of creative freedom, allowing him to take Expressionistic leaps. When Ms. James and Mr. Eckman are shot, their bodies briefly transform into wrenching, twisting white silhouettes while the backdrop becomes a blast of bright red. You are spared the blood, even as the horror creeps in and then floods you.

In her article, Ms. Colloff noted that, surprisingly, perhaps, outside of some bullet holes, there were no physical reminders of the shooting at the University of Texas until 1999, when the school created a memorial garden. “No plaques had ever been displayed, no list of names read, no memorial services held,” she wrote. In 2007, the school finally installed a plaque observing the shooting, and this Aug. 1, the 50th anniversary, it dedicated a new memorial. Using a limited frame, Mr. Maitland does his own commemorating, inherently raising questions about terror, the nature of heroism and what it means to really survive. He also does something even more necessary: He turns names on a plaque into people.

Advertisements

SUMMERTIME (La belle saison) rocks #SBIFF The Wave Film Festival ~ France

Summertime, the latest work from writer/director Catherine Corsini, delivered a wallop yesterday evening at the Santa Barbara Riviera Theater during the second day of the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s (SBIFF) The Wave ~ France. Using exquisite lighting and the abundant beauty of her actors, Corsini unveils a highly stylized period piece capturing a mood and the sensitivities of life for young French women.

Screen Shot 2016-07-13 at 10.26.15 AM

In its most elemental form, Summertime, tells the story of two young women who, in 1971, meet in Paris by happenchance during the height of the times feminist activities and wind up falling passionately in love. The film received multiple nominations for Cesar and Lumiere awards in categories of Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor, Best Screenplay and Best Director while garnering Lumiere Award for Best Music with the work from Gregoire Hetzel.

 

Summertime screens again on Sunday, July 17th, at the Riviera Theater, 2044 Alameda Padre Serra, in Santa Barbara, Calif. 

Today’s featured films include The Great Game, at 2:00PM, Being 17, at 5:00PM and Fanny’s Journey at 7:30PM.

Tickets and passes are available at the box office. Prices range from $8 – $10 for single admission and $80 – $250 for festival passes. For more information on passes and scheduling click here.

See you at the movies!

IMG_5566

 

#SBIFF The Wave Film Festival ~ France Opens with Microbe & Gasoline (Microbe et Gasoil)

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s (SBIFF) The Wave Film Festival ~ France opened last night at SBIFF’s new home, the Santa Barbara Riviera Theater. French movie lover’s gathered outside while enjoying the expansive, sweeping views from the theater’s front. Once inside, the viewers were treated to a brief introduction from The Wave festival director, Mickey Duzdevich and a cleverly put together, coming of age film, Microbe & Gasoline, written and directed by Michel Gondry. Ange Dargent portrays Daniel (Microbe) with Theophile Baquet as Theo (Gasoline) while Audrey Tautou (Amelie) plays Marie Therese.

unnamed-2

The film’s billing reads:

“Microbe, a shy, aspiring artist, has trouble making friends at school until he meets Gasoline, a likeminded outcast. Together they hatch a plan to build a car and spend their summer on an epic road trip across France. This charming adventure from Michel Gondry (MOOD INDIGO, BE KIND REWIND) has been called his “most satisfying movie since ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND,” reminding us how friendships can help us reach our true potential. Also starring Audrey Tautou (AMELIE, DA VINCI CODE).”

Microbe & Gasoline is every bit of this and more. It delves into the teenage angst in a new and unique manner combining costumes, music and the lush French countryside. Microbe & Gasoline is scheduled to screen again on Friday, July 17th, 7:30PM at the Riviera Theater, 2044 Alameda Padre Serra, Santa Barbara, Calif.

The Wave ~ France continues today with Summertime showing at 5:00PM followed by Neither Heaven Nor Earth at 7:30PM. Individual tickets are $10 with festival passes as a Patron for $250 and Cinephile at $80. For more information click here: Passes.

See you at the movies!

IMG_5566

Seven Days of French Cinema at the Riviera Theater in Santa Barbara

Dear Cinephiles,

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s ~ The Wave Festival – France is “excited to announce the final 2 films completing out the lineup of 11 amazing and new French Films that will be featured at The Wave Film Festival next week. The schedule, passes and individual tickets are available now at the links below. Join us for this special cinematic journey to France at the Riviera Theatre July 11 through 17th!”

For more information on ticketing, passes  click here : SBIFF ~ The Wave

To view the  program guide click here: Program Guide

See you at the movies!

santa-barbara-riviera-theater1

(Content provided by sbiff.org)

 

2016 The Wave Film Festival ~ France #SBIFF

Dear Cinephiles,

At The Wave Film Festivals over that last two years we have visited France twice, Spain, Latin America, and East Asia. From these countries we have seen 44 amazing films that we would not have been able to see otherwise.

The Wave Director Mickey Duzdevich and programmer Whitney Murdy are currently working on yet another exciting line up of 11 new French films of which will be announced shortly.

Wave_france

Passes are now on sale for the upcoming Wave which will be July 11th through 17th at the Riviera Theatre. Come take another cinematic trip to France with us!

Patron Pass ~ $250
• Reserved Seating
• Access to ALL Film Screenings
• Access to the Passholder Reception (date/location TBA)
• Pass is non-transferable

Cinephile Pass ~ $80
• Access to Eleven (11) Film Screenings (one screening of each film)
• Access to the Passholder Reception (date/location TBA)

Individual Tickets
• Not available for purchase until film schedule is released in early July
• General Admission $10
• Senior/Student $8

Purchase passes here!

(Source: sbiff.org)

Audience Award Winner announced for SBIFF’s The Wave!

JIN MOYOUNG’S “MY LOVE, DON’T CROSS THAT RIVER” WINS AUDIENCE AWARD AT SBIFF’S THE WAVE FILM FESTIVAL
unnamed(9)

SBIFF’s “The Wave Film Festival” concluded this past weekend with Jin Moyoung’s MY LOVE, DON’T CROSS THAT RIVER from South Korea winning the Audience Award sponsored by the Santa Barbara Independent. This Wave highlighted 11 brand new Asian films from South Korea, Japan, China, the Philippines and Taiwan.

MY LOVE, DON’T CROSS THAT RIVER is a South Korean documentary by Jin Moyoung and stars Jung Jaeyoung, Kim Minhee. MY LOVE, DON’T CROSS THAT RIVER out-grossed INTERSTELLAR in its opening weekend in South Korea and went on to become the highest grossing indie/doc in Korean history.

Mickey Duzdevich, The Wave Director, commented, “Jim Moyoung’s documentary is the type of quality foreign film that we strive to bring audiences through the Wave Film Festival. It is so well deserving of the audience award, and there is no question why it is one of the most successful South Korean docs to date.”

An intimate portrait of an elderly couple nearing the end of life, MY LOVE, DON’T CROSS THAT RIVER is as delicate as it is raw. Observing this fragile couple in their South Korean home, director Jin Moyoung’s camera acts as a fly on the wall, capturing a deep love painted through simple acts of affection—from a good-natured leaf fight to a gentle caress of the cheek. No filmmaking tricks are necessary, as the honest and tender feelings expressed by this husband and wife are all that’s needed to tell this story of true love.

“The Wave Film Festival” will return this summer on July 13th through July 17th and will highlight eleven new French Films over its five day run at the Riviera Theatre. Passes go on sale next week at www.sbiff.org.

Santa-Barbara-Film-Festival-logo

 

 

#SBIFF The Wave ~ Pan-Asia Full Lineup

All 11 exciting new Asian films and the schedule have been announced!
We are looking forward to sharing this cinematic journey with you this week. Films start today. Get your passes and tickets to The Wave Film Festival ~ Pan-Asia now!

Full Lineup Here

 

unnamed

Ready to take a trip to Asia!

Patron Pass ~ $250
• Reserved Seating
• Access to ALL Film Screenings
• Access to the Passholder Reception
– Engel & Völkers – 1323 State Street
– Tuesday May 10 – 5:30pm – 7:30pm
• VIP Giftbag
• Pass is non-transferable
Cinephile Pass ~ $80
• Access to Eleven (11) Film Screenings (one screening of each film)
• Access to the Passholder Reception
– Engel & Völkers – 1323 State Street
– Tuesday May 10 – 5:30pm – 7:30pmIndividual Tickets
• General Admission $10
• Senior/Student $8 (available at the door only)

Passes Here

 

Looking forward to seeing you there!

 

(Source: sbiff.org)

Two films announced for #SBIFF The Wave Film Festival ~ Pan-Asia

 

 

Take a five day trip to Asia by seeing eleven brand new Asian films including the recently announced Mr. Six and Sweet Bean!

 

Mr. Six 

This thrilling new film from gifted auteur Guan Hu (Cow) immerses us in the crime-riddled labyrinth of Beijing’s rapidly changing underworld. Based on actual events, Mr. Six is the story of a fascinating man whose life reflects the history of a nation.
In a welcome return to acting, great Beijing writer-director Feng Xiaogang stars as the mysterious Mr. Six. Many years ago Mr. Six was a notorious gangster. That was back when there was still such a thing as honour among thieves, when criminals earned respect and maintained principles. These days Mr. Six is all but forgotten, a living relic residing in a hutong, or narrow alley.

24MRSIX-master675
Feng Xaiogang as Mr. Six  (Credit: China Lion Film)

One day Six’s son, Xiaobo (Li Yifeng), is abducted by some spoiled punks after scratching their precious Ferrari. Mr. Six, who has been diagnosed with a serious heart condition, realizes that he must do whatever it takes to get his son back and forge a meaningful bond with him while there is still time — even if that means returning to the life he thought he had left behind. Beijing’s new generation of thugs are all flash and no ethics, but Mr. Six, calling on a few friends from his past for assistance, finds that the old ways can still be used to get a difficult job done.

With Guan’s impeccable narrative power behind the camera and Feng’s subtle character-making magic in front of it, Mr. Six sees a panoply of diverse talents come together to tell a gripping story that bridges Chinas old and new. – Giovanna Fulvi, tiff

 

Sweet Bean

Adapted from the novel by Durian Sukegawa, the new film by Naomi Kawase is a graceful ode to the invisible essences of existence — to the beauty and joy we can discover once we learn to listen to nature and feel the life that is coursing through and all around us.

“Sweet Bean” is a delicious red bean paste, the sweet heart of the dorayaki pancakes that Sentaro (Masatoshi Nagase) sells from his little bakery to a small but loyal clientele. Absorbed in sad memories and distant thoughts, Sentaro cooks with skill but without enthusiasm. When seventy-six-year-old Tokue (Kirin Kiki) responds to his ad for an assistant and cheerfully offers to work for a ridiculously low wage, Sentaro is skeptical about the eccentric old lady’s ability to endure the long hours. But when she shows up early one morning and reveals to him the secret to the perfect an — listening to the stories of wind, sun and rain that the beans have to tell — Sentaro agrees to take her on, trusting her strange ability to connect with nature. With Tokue’s new home-cooked an recipe, Sentaro’s business begins to flourish — but along with her smiles and culinary skill, Tokue is afflicted with an illness that, once revealed, drives her into isolation once again.

18SWEETBEAN2-articleLarge
Credit – NYTimes.com

Using cookery to explore her perennial theme of communion with nature, in An Kawase also poignantly addresses the discrimination that condemns many like Tokue to live their lives segregated from the rest of society. Beautifully shot and quietly moving, An is a humble masterpiece from a singularly accomplished filmmaker.  – Giovanna Fulvi, tiff

Stay tuned for more on this exciting new Wave!

 

Passes to The Wave Film Festival ~ Pan-Asia  are available now here: http://sbiff.org/product-category/the_wave/

unnamed

(Source: SBIFF)