Dallas Movie Screening

Dallas Movie Screenings started out as a mailing list on Yahoo Groups to facilitate finding free screening passes in the DFW area. When Yahoo Groups shut down, we are now posting screenings on our Facebook page at http://www..facebook.com/groups/dallasmoviescreenings
Earlier Reesa's Reviews can also be found at:http://www.moviegeekfeed.com

Logo art by Steve Cruz http://www.mfagallery.com

Website and Group Contact: dalscreenings@gmail.com

Friday, April 29, 2011

Fast Five

The boys are back in town for the 5th episode of fast cars and testosterone with a little bit of Godzilla vs. King Kong. Vin Diesel and Dwayne Johnson go toe to toe in a beefy battle that is one highlight of this blatantly mindless action flick that full of guns, cars and terse dialogue. You don't really have to have had seen the last 4 of the franchise, but this turbo charged chapter is probably the best of the bunch.

The action is set shortly after the fourth movie when Dom (Vin Diesel) and Brian (Paul Walker) are supposed to meet up in Rio. Dom's old friend Vince (Matt Schulze) gets them involved in a heist of some cars on a train, but it goes badly and the guys are set up to take the blame for the deaths of some DEA agents on board. Agent Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson), the relentless bounty hunter for the feds is sent in with his team to catch them. Meanwhile Rio gangster leader Reyes (Joaquim de Almeida) is also looking for them for the chip that was inside one of the stolen cars. It involves a GPS delivery schedule for shipments of dealer packs each worth 10 million dollars. The Ocean 11 heist requires the guys to assemble their old team that includes a chameleon, a fast talker, a techno, wall puncher, utility and weapons and a 2 person driving team.

Don't think it's all guy action, the cast includes some capable women with the absence of Michelle Rodriquez in this installment. Jordana Brewster as Dom's sister and Brian's girlfriend is back. They have also added former Miss Israel Gal Godot as the cool collected Gisele and Elsa Pataky as the rookie cop Elena recruited by Hobbs. The merry band is rounded out by the welcome return of Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris and Sung Kang . Everyone has some fun stuff to do so the action seems well balanced.

Director Justin Lin is back for his third outing at the helm working with a script by Chris Morgan that is filled with the most outrageous stunts. Prison break, gun battles across Rio's favela shanty towns, running a car into a moving train, and dragging a huge safe through the streets of Rio pulled by two Dodge Chargers are the biggest octane fueled moments to be expected. Don't come expecting a story. Just sit back, fasten your seatbelt and enjoy the ride. And wait until after the credits for that extra scene which is probably the set up for Fast 6.
(Review by reesa)

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At Brookside High School it's three weeks before Prom. Student class president Nova Prescott is in charge of organizing the event. She and her committee has just put the last touches on the decorations. Now the only thing left is to find a date. Asking and getting asked to the prom seems to be a major turning point in the teenage life cycle. Or as one student says it's “the soul crushing mistress”.

Nova (Aimee Teegarden of Friday Night Lights) is the all around over achiever. She's just been accepted at Georgetown but all these extracurricular activities hasn't made her into a snob. She has good friends, but no particular guy. She's hoping that Brandon (Jonathan Keltz) who just got accepted to Yale will ask her to the prom. He is dad approved material for his daughter. All around her guys are pulling all the stops to ask out their dates. The much anticipated request doesn't go as she hoped. On top of that, the shed with all the prom decoration is accidentally burned to the ground. Her committee doesn't want to do it all over again.

The principal assigns the school bad boy Jesse (Thomas McDonell who elicited lots of swoons from the young women in attendance) to the task or else he can't graduate. Immediate animosity develops between the two, but as they work together they begin to see each other in a different light. Jesse's mother a single mom works as a waitress and he helps care for his little brother. He's also got some anger issues with his dad who left them. Nova is just the opposite with her supportive and if somewhat over protective father who sees Jesse as a threat and distraction to Nova's future.

Director Joe Nussbaum and writer Katie Wech tell a coming of age story in the typical Disney fashion in a high school populated with nice looking teens who cover the ethnic spectrum. There's the African-American football player and his girlfriend who are a shoe-in for the prom King and Queen. There's one Asian and a couple of Hispanics. Mostly the students are white in a suburban neighborhood. The usual high school hierarchy is also represented with the jocks, nerds, and preps. Each of these archetypes featured include the tall dorky guy who can't get a prom date, a couple of sophomores who face bro-friend troubles when one of them favors a pretty girl, and Nova's girlfriends who are her biggest fans . There is lots of meaningful conversations on the importance of getting a prom invite. No metal detectors or armed guards in sight. No one is particularly mean and no slushies are thrown in someone's face. There's no gay issues here. No sex. No drugs. No drinking This is Disney after all. The little side stories are about not being judgmental and how the memories you have in high school will stay with you for the rest of your life. Good for teens going to their first prom.
(Review by reesa)

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Hoodwinked Too: Hood vs. Evil

Hansel and Gretel have been kidnapped!!! The “Happily Ever After Agency”, aka HEA has been called in to find the culprit. Red Riding Hood, The Big Bad Wolf, Granny Puckett, Twitchy and Nicky Flippers are all back on the case.

Red (now voiced by Hayden Panettiere) has gone for training with the Sisters of the Hood. They are in seculded mountain hideaway that teaches not only do martial arts but baking. In fact the final level you can achieve is the ability to name the secret ingredient in the special truffle. A truffle that has the ability to make a person invincible. Not many acolytes have ever reached that level. Red's training is cut short when she is summoned by the dapper frog Nicky Flippers (David Ogden Stiers ) the head of the super secret Happily Ever After Agency. The wicked witch (Joan Cusack) is holding the Hansel (Bill Hader) and Gretel (Amy Poehler) in a gingerbread house in the forest. The Wolf (Patrick Warburton), Twitchy the hyperactive squirrel (Cory Edwards) and Granny (Glenn Close) need the whole team on the case. They check out information that leads them to the Beanstock Club run by mob boss Giant (Brad Garrett). They need to question the singing harp (Wayne Newton). There's also run ins with Boingo the Bunny (Andy Dick), Moss the Troll (David Alan Grier), Mad Hog (Cheech Marin), Stone (Tommy Chong), Heidi (Heidi Klum) and Kirk the Woodsman (Martin Short). All this to find the kids and uncover a plot to steal the secret truffle recipe.

Director Mike Disa also wrote the script with Cory and Todd Edward and Tony Leech. The animation is typical and colorful but nothing special. The 3d elements were added in post production so it's really not worth spending the extra cash on those glasses. The story which is often muddled maybe too complicated for younger kids. The dialogue is filled with pop culture references like Rachel Ray, the Food Network, Twitter, and Silence of the Lambs. There's even a funny bit when the HEA agents store the gingerbread house by eating their way in. The first Hoodwinked came out in 2005 with the voice of Red in that movie was done by Anne Hathaway, and one would be hard pressed to remember it. The fairy tale mash up has it's punny moments but it's only there for the parents who are forced to take their kids to the movies.
(Review by reesa)

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POM Wonderful Presents the Greatest Movie Ever Sold

In the movie The Truman Show with Jim Carrey, the actors in the fake reality show encompassing Truman's world would have to add product endorsements while pretending to act normally so Truman would not suspect. Morgan Spurlock's latest documentary adventure examines with a tongue in cheek the marketing blatantly evident in today's movies and television. He decides to finance a film using all money from advertising.

There is probably no one still alive that doesn't remember a time that didn't have mass advertising. Today's world is filled with neon lighted signs, billboards, TV, radio and lately more often shown before the movies and in the actual movie itself. Ironman had 14 ad placements in the movie. Morgan Spurlock shot to popularity by trying to live off McDonald's food for a month. This time armed with story boards presentations he approaches agencies that specialize in bringing advertisers and products together in hope of financing his movie just from the fees brought in for product placement. The next thing he has to do is find a client that's willing to become a co-promoter. The concept and the exposure doesn't seem to fit some major brands and they reject this proposal quickly. He decides to have his own brand personality analyzed. There are actual psychologists who try and find which brand is the right fit for your project. Once he finds one company willing for the exposure others begin to fall in line. Soon he's wading through mountains of contracts threatening to take over the project with their specific advertising placements.

There's a little wink wink nudge nudge to the camera every time Spurlock makes a presentation and it makes the whole effort seem like a big joke. Especially since every scene is filled with product placements. There's discussions with various talking heads like Ralph Nadar regarding the selling of corporate American through the media. Outside of these interesting little tidbits the film doesn't really go anywhere or do anything. Spurlock's meetings with different companies who are all smiling and happy to be in a movie to promote their goods. He does have some amusing not for prime time commercial pitches, but ends up doing what the company wants. There's a side trip to Sao Paolo, Brazil where the city has banned billboards on sides of buildings, buses and taxi's. The bustling city looks more beautiful without things screaming at you to “buy, buy, buy!”. There's also a company that does neuromarketing a process that measures brain responses to ads. So while we all know that we are being bombarded with indulgence in the material world, Spurlock in his logo covered suit is trying to get us to buy his brand.
(Review by reesa)

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Sunday, April 24, 2011

Movies Scheduled for the Week of 4/24 - 4/30

If you mistaken the Angelika notice for Reparando as a free screening then y'all
are in for a surprise. It's not free. But since a lot of people on this list
don't read this weekly update there's going to be some red faces when they show
up. Oh well. Pays to read your email.

It's almost May which means all the big ticket movies will be showing up on our
calendar. We begin the month with Thor. There's going to be some hectic trading
and bartering for passes. Just remember...all together now...double check that
return address before hitting send. And please enter the contests and wait
until they are awarded before you start mooching.

For all of you folks who wanted to win those passes to Memphis for Thursday and
next Wednesday, you MUST include the date you wanted to attend. Entries without
dates will be disqualified. So if you already sent an email, do it again WITH
the the date this time.

April 24 - 30, 2011



7:30 pm
The Greatest Movie Ever Sold


7:30 pm
Fast Five
Studio Movie Grill Dallas

7:30 pm
AMC Northpark


6:30 pm
Iron Jawed Angels
Studio Movie Grill Dallas

7:30 pm
Jumping the Broom
Studio Movie Grill Royal


7:30 pm
Something Borrowed
tba - Dallas



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Friday, April 22, 2011

Water for Elephants

An old man is too late for the circus performance and the workers there think he's escaped from his nursing home. The gentleman spots a picture of the old Belzini Circus and becomes deep in thought. Curious the circus manager wants to hear the story of what happened back in those ill fated days of 1931.

Hal Hobrook plays Jacob as an old man relaying the story of when he was taking his last exam of veterinary medicine at Cornell when a tragedy befell him. Losing his parents and unable to finish school the young Jacob (Robert Pattinson) is just another homeless person on the road on his way to the city during the depression . He decides to jump a passing train which turns out to be a box car for the Belzini Brothers Most Spectacular show on Earth. The roustabouts put him to work shoveling manure. There's a certain hierarchy in the circus family with the head being the sole leader and arbitrator. Belzini is run by the charismatic mentally unstable August (Christoph Waltz) who is married to the star of the show the beautiful Marlena (Reese Witherspoon). Jacob is able to gain August's respect by diagnosing Marlena's show horses. Embraced as an intellectual equal by August, Jacob is repelled by his manic mean streak. Marlena and Jacob are also feeling a mutual attraction that August doesn't fail to notice.

Adapted from the novel by Sara Gruen by screenwriter Richard LaGravenese and director Francis Lawrence who has done scifi films like I Am Legend and Constantine. This is like an old school movie with the beautifully realized production values of the set design and the rich warm cinematography. There's a moment when Jacob first sees the circus with a childlike innocence and wonder, the acts all bright and shiny before the reality of daily work shows the underbelly of life in those tough times. All the colorful circus characters are nicely portrayed without being stereotypical. There's probably going to be a lot of criticism for Pattinson but he actually does a creditable job. His bedroom eyes will certainly be exciting for Team Edward fans, but you have to give the guy some props for the effort and to the director who doesn't play it up. It's also nice to see Witherspoon in something meaty again. She's has a Garboresque glamor with her bleached blond curls and bright red lips taming the wild beast that simmers in her husband. Waltz does his best work since Inglorious Basterds as the mercurial August who is sympathetic and in desperate need of bi-polar meds. His circus family lives in fear of his wrath and his benevolence. Throwing someone off the train is an extreme form of getting outsourced. It's the elephant Rosie who steals the show. It's more like a love triangle between Jacob, Marlena and Rosie. If you want a good old fashioned movie romance, then this is it.
(Review by reesa)

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Mija a sixty something grandmother decides to enroll in a poetry class. For the past few weeks she's been noticing that she's been losing the ability to recall words. Her doctor is more concerned with this symptom when she comes in complaining of headaches. In her way, she makes light of the problem.

A school girl was found floating in the river a victim of suicide after being sexually abused by some classmates. The school's efforts to keep it quiet makes a deal with the other parents for a financial recompense to the bereaved mother. They fathers of the other boys involved ask her to meet with them to discuss the incident and the amount that she will have to pay. When Mija is confronted by the amount of money she was to give to the dead girls family, she gets up and leaves the room, already lost in finding her poem. Mija only works part time as a caregiver for a man who suffered from a stroke and she collects a small government check. There's no way she can afford to pay her share of the settlement. Mija's sullen grandson who is living with her treats her with no respect. His mother is in the city and doesn't help with any support. Even after being diagnosed with dementia, Mija walks around her village in her nice clothes and little notebook waiting for the words to fill her world.

Writer/director Chang-dong Lee won the Best Screenplay award at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival. The wonderful lyrical story is like the beautiful words of a poem which can hide the ugliness of the world. Mija is dealing with the daily grind of working for a creepy old guy that tries to take advantage of her while bathing, her ungrateful grandson with whom she doesn't confront, the demand for money that she has no way of getting, and the slow deterioration of her memory. At one time a teacher had said she had the “vein” for poetry so on a whim she joins a class. Jeong-hie Yun who appears in film for the first time in 15 years embodies Mija with a quiet strength and sensitivity. When she tries to tell the taxi cab driver where she is going she charmingly smiles and laughs at her inability to recall the location. Miji doesn't seem to have any support or friends. She deals with what life brings her on her own in her own way. Hanging on to that last bit of beauty like we all do.
(Review by reesa)

Lee Chang-Dong's "Agnes Song" (poem read at end of the movie)

How is it over there?
How lonely is it?
Is it still glowing red at sunset?
Are the birds still singing on the way to the forest?
Can you receive the letter I dared not send?
Can I convey…
the confession I dared not make?
Will time pass and roses fade?
Now it's time to say goodbye
Like the wind that lingers and then goes,
just like shadows
To promises that never came,
to the love sealed till the end.
To the grass kissing my weary ankles
And to the tiny footsteps following me
It's time to say goodbye
Now as darkness falls
Will a candle be lit again?
Here I pray…
nobody shall cry…
and for you to know…
how deeply I loved you
The long wait in the middle of a hot summer day
An old path resembling my father's face
Even the lonesome wild flower shyly turning away
How deeply I loved
How my heart fluttered at hearing faint song
I bless you
Before crossing the black river
With my soul's last breath
I am beginning to dream…
a bright sunny morning…
again I awake blinded by the light…
and meet you…
standing by me.

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Monday, April 18, 2011





DALLAS, TX, April 13, 2011 – Texas Frightmare Weekend (April 28 – May 1) announced the Texas premiere of Lucky McKee’s controversial film THE WOMAN at Studio Movie Grill (1600 South Stemmons, Lewisville, TX) on Thursday, April 28 at 9:30PM. The presentation will include red carpet entrances by McGee as well as the film’s stars Pollyanna McIntosh, Sean Bridgers and Shyla Molhusen.

Also announced were the slate of screenings highlighted by the World Premiere of Brian T. Jaynes’ BOGGY CREEK. The film delivers an updated take on the notorious and frightful Boggy Creek legend. Jaynes will attend and participate in a post-screening Q&A. TFW will also feature an impressive lineup of filmmaker panels including one-on-one discussions with horror and genre legend Roger Corman, fan favorites like Robert Englund, Angus Scrimm and Don Coscarelli and talks with cast members from the SAW films and THE BOONDOCK SAINTS, among others.

McKee’s THE WOMAN follows the horror that results when a successful country lawyer captures a wild woman in the woods and forces his family to help him “civilize” her. The film’s premiere screening earlier this year at the Sundance Film Festival turned into a controversial event after one audience member hurt themselves trying to exit the theater and another audience member accosted McKee as the director attempted to begin a post screening Q&A. Both people had become completely distressed and upset by the intense content and violence in the film, as did several others that the film instantly became one of the film fest’s most buzz worthy titles. THE WOMAN also stars Angela Bettis and Lauren Ashley Carter.

THE WOMAN also owes the casting of Shyla Molhusen to TFW as McKee’s father discovered the daughter of Art With Designs Latex owner Kurt Molhusen at last year’s event. Molhusen has been a vendor at the convention each year since it’s inception in 2006. The screening of THE WOMAN will be preceded by Andrew van der Houten’s OFFSPRING at 7:00PM. The tale of a family of primitive cannibals that wreck havoc on a suburban community, THE OFFSPRING was the prequel for THE WOMAN. Van der Houten will attend and participate in a post-screening Q&A. The Lionsgate Home Entertainment release is available on DVD and Blu-Ray.

Texas Frightmare Film Festival Director Loyd Cryer said, "It is really exciting for us to present the Texas premiere of THE WOMAN at Texas Frightmare Weekend. We have long been fans of Lucky McKee’s films and since Shyla was discovered here, we could not be more proud of our association with what we think is his most audacious and affecting work yet. And following films like MAY, RED and his Masters of Horror classic, “Sick Girl”, that is saying something.”

They join other high profile recent additions including a very rare stateside appearance by AUDITION star Eihi Shiina and Japanese director and special effects master Yoshihiro Nishimura (TOKYO GORE POLICE). They will attend a special screening of their film, HELLDRIVER at the Sheraton Grand Hotel on Friday, April 29 at 8:00PM.

Along with Corman, Englund, and PHANTASM’s Scrimm and Coscarelli, key attendees will include influential horror and genre author and filmmaker Clive Barker (HELLRAISER, MIDNIGHT MEAT TRAIN), independent filmmaking legend Roger Corman and Tom Six and Dieter Laser, the director and star of last year’s hit and much-talked about cult film THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE and Malcolm McDowell.

Other notable attendees include; NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET’S Robert Englund; Barker’s HELLRAISER stars Doug Bradley and Ashley Laurence; the SAW franchise trio of Cary Elwes, Costas Mandylor and Shawnee Smith; THE BOONDOCK SAINTS duo, Sean Patrick Flannery and Norman Reedus; 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY’S Kier Dullea; “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” and “Beverly Hills 90210” star Brian Austin Green, and many others.

Texas Frightmare Weekend will also feature the 4th Annual Zombie Walk sponsored by Moxley Manor as well as the 4th Annual Hearse and Shock Rod Show.

The Texas Frightmare Film Festival and Texas Frightmare Weekend will run April 29 – May 1, 2010. Passes and tickets are currently on sale online at www.TexasFrightmareWeekend.com.


Thursday, April 28

7:00PM OFFSPRING (at Studio Movie Grill)
followed by Q&A with Andrew van der Houten

9:30PM THE WOMAN (at Studio Movie Grill)
followed by Q&A with Lucky McKee, Pollyanna McIntosh, Sean Bridgers and Shyla Molhusen

Friday, April 29

8:00PM HELLDRIVER (at Sheraton Grand Hotel)
followed by Q&A Eihi Shiina and Yoshihiro Nishimura

10:30PM SAW (at Sheraton Grand Hotel)
featuring live commentary by Cary Elwes, Shawnee Smith and Costas Mandylor

12:00AM SHARKTOPUS (at Sheraton Grand Hotel)

Saturday, April 30

4:00PM History of Rue Morgue by Space (at Sheraton Grand Hotel)
followed by Q&A with Rodrigo Gudiño

6:00PM MUTANT GIRLS SQUAD (at Sheraton Grand Hotel)

8:00PM BOGGY CREEK (World Premiere) (at Sheraton Grand Hotel)
followed by Q&A with Bryan T. Jaynes and TBD cast

10:00PM DOLLBOY (at Sheraton Grand Hotel)
followed by Q&A with Billy Pon

12:00AM THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE (at Sheraton Grand Hotel)
followed by Q&A with Tom Six and Dieter Laser

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Do Something Reel Film Festival


Monthlong festival hits 70 markets across U.S., serves as reminder of small changes people can make for good while supporting budding green-genre filmmakers

AUSTIN, Texas (March 14, 2011) — Whole Foods Market, the leading retailer of natural and organic foods, announces the debut of its nationwide "Whole Foods Market Do Something Reel" Film Festival. The festival will launch April 1, 2011, and travel to 70 cities across the U.S. in celebration of Earth Month.

The film festival is a collection of six provocative, character-driven films that focus on food, environmental issues and everyday people with a vision of making a world of difference. "Through our Whole Foods Market Do Something Reel Film Festival we want to raise awareness of environmental and food issues, and support filmmakers who are creating films that inspire people to question the impact our choices have on our health, body and environment," said Walter Robb, co-CEO of Whole Foods Market. "We see film as an inspirational medium that can spark an active dialogue and encourage people to take action locally."

Whole Foods Market is creating a grant program for filmmakers in the green film genre. A portion of all tickets sales from the "Whole Foods Market Do Something Reel" Film Festival will go towards a film production and development grant that will encourage filmmakers to continue making stories about the environment and the choices we make as consumers. Grants will be awarded for filmmakers at varying stages of development — from conception through completion.

Unlike larger destination festivals, "Whole Foods Markets Do Something Reel" Film Festival will be held in movie theaters across the country in communities near Whole Foods Market stores. The festival will also feature filmmaker discussions, either in person or via Skype.

The six films chosen for the inaugural "Whole Foods Market Do Something Reel" Film Festival support the company's mission and cover a broad range of provocative topics. They include:

"Bag It!" — In this highly entertaining and eye-opening film, filmmaker Suzan Beraza follows Jeb Berrier as he navigates our plastic-reliant world. Jeb is not a radical environmentalist, but an average American who decides to take a closer look at our cultural love affair with plastics. www.bagitmovie.com

"Lunch Line" — This deeply affecting film from filmmakers Mike Graziano and Ernie Park follows six kids from one of the toughest neighborhoods in Chicago as they set out to fix school lunch � and wind up at the White House. Their unlikely journey parallels the dramatic transformation of school lunch from a patchwork of local anti-hunger efforts to a robust national feeding program. www.lunchlinefilm.com

"On Coal River" — A compelling and transcendent narrative on the human costs of coal and strip-mining, this provocative film from filmmakers Francine Cavanaugh and Adams Woods follows the journey of a former coal miner and his neighbors, residents of Coal River Valley in West Virginia, as they transform from so-called victims to fearless and informed experts on mountaintop removal. www.oncoalriver.com

"PLANEAT" — This visually stunning film from filmmakers Shelley Lee Davis and Or Shlomi tells the story of the scientists, farmers and chefs tackling one of the greatest problems of our age: Western culture's love affair with meat and dairy. Through an extraordinary personal and mouthwatering culinary journey we discover the wide range of medical and environmental benefits of eating our veggies. www.planeat.tv

"Urban Roots" — Filmmaker Mark MacInnis tells the powerful story of a group of dedicated Detroiters working tirelessly to fulfill their vision for locally grown, sustainably farmed food in a city cut off from real food and limited to processed fast food. This group has taken on the enormous task of changing this reality. www.urbanrootsamerica.com

"Vanishing of the Bees" — Narrated by Oscar-nominated actress Ellen Page, this cautionary tale from filmmakers George Langworthy and Maryam Heinen reveals the mystery of the disappearing bees, and the links to industrial farming and our attitude toward the natural world. Starring in this real-life drama is a commercial bee farmer who sounded the alarm when his bee colonies collapsed and his business was decimated. www.vanishingbees.com

As part of the Festival, Whole Foods Market will also stream the documentary, "Dig It" on www.dosomethingreel.com on Earth Day, April 22. This energetic, call-to-action film features the members of the band Pearl Jam as they participate in tree-planting actions and beautification efforts in New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

The festival is presented in association with Applegate Farms and RiceSelect™, with additional support from EVOL Burritos, Food Should Taste Good, and Siggi's.

For additional information about the festival, a complete schedule of events in each of the 70 markets and details about the grant program, please visit www.dosomethingreel.com.

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IndiePix Unlimited: the Independent Film Subscription Streaming Site

IndiePix Announces IndiePix Unlimited: the Independent Film Subscription Streaming Site

Site opens for sign-ups April 19 with nearly 200 titles, growing to 500 by the end of the launch period

Los Angeles Times is the presenting Sponsor. Joining them as an Affiliate Launch Sponsor, is Filmmaker Magazine, and 13 other indie film sites and blogs

April 18, 2011 New York, NY -- IndiePix today announced the launch of IndiePix Unlimited, an internet based, subscription, video-on-demand store offering the widest specialist subscription streaming platform for independent films. For a small ongoing subscription fee IndiePix Unlimited customers can choose and instantly view over 200 independent films - growing to 500 titles by early summer. The site will feature premiers for recent Venice, Cannes, Tribeca, and Sundance award winning films and filmmakers - titles that are not available on any other streaming subscription site. It will open for consumer signups and film choices on April 19, 2011 at 9am EDT

The Los Angeles Times is the presenting sponsor of IndiePix Unlimited. The IndiePix Unlimited site (at www.indiepixunlimited.com) will provide a platform for independent filmmakers and indie studios alike. Other leading industry sponsors include Filmmaker Magazine, Filmsnobbery, and 13 of the industry’s leading independent film sites and blogs.

Bob Alexander, President of IndiePix, said: "We are very pleased with the response to this initiative from the independent film community. I want to single out our presenting sponsor, the Los Angeles Times, which has made a significant commitment to independent film through their ongoing editorial coverage, sponsorship of the Los Angeles Film Festival and other key events and activities in Southern California and across the US."

"Launch Partners include Filmmaker Magazine, who is making an important early contribution to the launch of this project. Also joining us as a Launch Partner," Alexander notes, "is the prominent independent film website, FilmSnobbery, with whom we look forward to continuing collaborations as this project moves ahead." IndiePix is joined by 13 other blog and independent film web sites in the launch of IndiePix Unlimited.

"As a third party store," Alexander explained, "our shelves are open to individual filmmakers, especially those seeking an alternative for their 'do-it-yourself' distribution projects. We are also pleased to be working with prominent digital film rights aggregators and with other independent film labels directly." Digital rights aggregators have played an important role in the growth of the independent film digital distribution market by assembling large numbers of highly sought after films for digital stores like IndiePix Unlimited. "In addition," Alexander said, "we are in discussions with other independent film studios and producers that hold digital rights about joining us."

There are a literally thousands of independent films produced each year and many hundreds of them have significant production credits, festival awards, and audiences. It is not the case that any existing digital store has a commanding share of independent films. "In fact," said Alexander, "several of the larger and more established stores have turned away from independent film in recent months as they expand their stores into episodic television programming formats."

"The quality and breadth of our content will be second to none," Alexander claims, "as rights holders -- individual and corporate, domestic and international -- discover the value to them of our platform."

Announcements of participating independent film distributors and independent film content aggregators will be made over the launch period for Indiepix Unlimited. That launch period extends out over the next 10 weeks and closes with the Los Angeles Film Festival on June 30, 2011. "The opening of this site is an evolving project that will take full shape over the next few weeks," Alexander said.

About IndiePix:
Indiepix Films is the web based distributor and retailer of independent film. The company offers a web based DVD catalog, digital downloads, and digital on-demand rental streaming. IndiePix Studios offers theatrical, retail and electronic distribution services to specifically selected films. IndiePix Unlimited is an additional consumer oriented store configured separately from the Company's other interests. The company's catalog exceeds 4,000 titles, of which 400 are signed to IndiePix for different distribution rights. About 250 of the 400 are in line for subscription on demand streaming. The company is based in New York City and was founded in 2004. Bob Alexander is President of the company and Sally Plourde is the Chief Operating Officer.

About IndiePix Unlimited:
IndiePix Unlimited offers a digital subscription streaming platform for independent films from filmmakers and distributors. The company's business model is based on a granular implementation of "allocated subscription revenue" which gives content holders very significant upside potential for titles included in the IndiePix Unlimited catalog. In addition, a full suite of back end administrative tools will be available to qualified participating content holders, emphasizing the total commitment to transparency and partnership on which the company is founded. Matt Goldfarb is the Chief Technology Officer and Kyle Walters is the Chief Designer.

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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Movies Scheduled for the Week of 4/17 - 4/23

Just because every once in awhile we have to broadcast reminders that y'all are mailing the group and not to the person intended, it's cause we do care that you get those passes. You are not going to get them if you just hit "reply". Double check that address before you hit send. It's not necessary to send snide comments to the group, because they will just get deleted.

For all the newbies...please don't ask for passes when there are contests pending. Enter stuff on your own. Once they have been awarded and you were not lucky, then you can ask.

Another thing, when we post there's a Angelika or Studio Movie Grill epass, please don't try and use the group email notice to use as an epass. You must sign up for the newsletters and use the ones the theater sends to you. Remember to check the Yahoo group website under the section "links" for all those important places to sign up.

April 17 - 23, 2011



7:30 pm
Ali: Fear Eats the Soul
Texas Theater


7:30 pm
African Cats
AMC Northpark


7:00 pm
Jumping the Broom
Angelika Dallas

7:30 pm
Angelika Dallas


7:00 pm
Cinemark West Plano



10:00 am

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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Texas Frightmare Weekend Schedule

Check out the schedule for the upcoming Texas Frightmare Weekend. There are several screenings on their program.


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Scream 4

Anna Paquin, Kristen Bell and Heather Graham are victims of a gruesome slaughter in a movie called Stab 7 being watched at home by some teen girls who get slaughtered themselves by an intruder who calls first asking “what's your favorite scary movie?” So begins the reboot of the successful if somewhat unsatisfying Scream trilogy. Screenwriter Kevin Williamson and Director Wes Craven have wisely returned to the form of the first and best of the Screams.

Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) has returned to Westboro after writing a self help book called Out of Darkness. It deals with the aftermath of being the only one left alive after the Screams 1,2 and 3. Word of the murdered teens gets everyone riled as it happened on the anniversary of the first murders in Westboro. Gale (Courtney Cox) wants to help solve the crimes like she did before with her now husband Dewey (David Arquette) who is now the sheriff. Sidney is staying with her aunt Kate (Mary McDonnell) and her cousin Jill (Emma Robert). Jill just broke up with boyfriend Trevor (Nico Tortorella). She gets one of those Ghostface calls as well as her next door neighbor Olivia (Marielle Jaffe). Kirby (Hayden Panettiere) their horror buff friend and the teen gore movie club nerds Charlie (Rory Culkin) and Robbie (Erik Knudsen) round out the group. Ghostface makes quick work around town as the body count grows. Gail who had written several books about the Ghostface murder sprees decides to try and trap him by hitting the beer filled “Stab-a-thon”, the Stab movie marathon. Fun movie note: the first Stab movie is being shown by Robert Rodriguez.

The best part of the first Scream was the self aware humor and deconstruction of the genre. Scream 4 stays true to form and is even more aware and technically savvy. As usual everyone in the film is a potential suspect and/or victim. Frustratingly is that although they are all schooled on the rules of horror movie mistakes, the teens still do the things you are not supposed to do. It's great to see the older characters back for some action (while trying not to be distracted that Cox and Arquette who had fallen for each other in the first and broke up in this fourth). The film is filled with interesting characters like Marley Shelton, Anthony Anderson and Adam Brody as the deputies and Alison Brie as Sidney's abrasive book agent. The story seems to rely on your previous knowledge of what happened in the earlier films. Not a whole lot of character development before people start dropping like flies. So when the surprise ending occurs, you may be scratching your head saying “really?...huh”.
(Review by reesa)

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Friday, April 15, 2011


In the jungles of Brazil a little baby blue macaw falls out of his tree and is suddenly caged and transported to about as opposite of his temperate home as you can get. In snow bound Minnesota his crate falls off the truck and he's discovered by a little girl and they become best friends forever. Years later a doctor of ornithology comes to inform the grown up girl that her macaw may be one of the last of it's kind in the world, Linda must decide to go to Brazil so her pet can mate.

Probably not exactly the kind of subject that will easily translate to young kids, but screenwriter Don Rhymer has many kids orientated movies to his credit like Surf's Up and Santa Clause 2. Director Carlos Saldanha is well suited to the location as he was born in Rio de Janeiro. The carnival atmosphere is nicely portrayed with the various talking birds and human characters. Interestingly the movie not only shows the colorful jungles and carnival sites, but also shows the poorer areas of Rio. Issues of the poverty in Rio are subtly addressed with a young boy who helps capture the macaws falls in with the poachers because he's homeless. The sound of Rio is accentuated by Sergio Mendes who served as the executive musical producer with music by How To Train Your Dragon's John Powell. Black Eyed Peas will.i.am and Jami Foxx offer up some songs with a samba, hip-hop and techno rhythms.

Jesse Eisenberg is the voice of Blu the pampered pet who never learned to fly. He's a fish out of water in Brazil and his first meeting with Jewel (Anne Hathaway) doesn't go too well. The sassy independent female blue macaw just wants to get out. After the tech in charge leaves a door open they are quickly captured by poachers. Their talons are chained together to hamper any means of escape. The poachers are assisted by Nigel (Jermaine Clement) a big nasty Cockatoo who loves to do the dirty work. When they escape again Jewel is hampered by being tethered to her non flying mate. With the help of some other feathery friends Pedro (will.i.am), Nico (Jamie Foxx), Rafael (George Lopez) the love advising toucan and a bulldog Luiz (Tracy Morgan) the blue love birds must find away to get unchained and Blu back to his owner. The adventures endured by the birds shows off the chemistry brewing between Jewel and Blu. The humans bookstore owner Linda (Leslie Mann) and Dr. Barbosa (Gracinha Leporace) the bird talking scientist have some moments of attraction too. The kids will enjoy the music and the bird antics. The parents will enjoy guessing the celebrity voices.
(Review by reesa)

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n 1948 Hind Husseini rescues some orphan children when they are displaced by an attack on their village. Through the various upheavals in the political climate of Jerusalem during the establishment of the state of Israel the children's home has gone from 55 to 2000 at the Dar Al-Tifel Institute.

Director Juilian Schnabel has adapted the autobiographical novel by Rual Jebreal tells the story of four women with a Palestinian point of view. It begins with Hind (Hiam Abbass) then we meet Nadia (Yasmine Elasri) who is sexually abused by her mother's husband runs away from home and become a belly dancer. When someone on a bus calls her an Arab whore she punches her out and gets set to prison. There she meets her cellmate Fatima (Ruba Blal) who was given three life sentences for setting a bomb in a theater that didn't go off. When Nadia gets out Fatima sends her to a friend when she meets Jamal who is a friend of Hind. He marries Nadia and they have Miral. Nadia keeps drinking and eventually kills herself. Jamal takes Miral (Frieda Pinto) to live part time at the children's home. As a teenager she goes with the other students to teach in the refugee camps where she witness someone's home being torn down by the Israelis. This incident seems to be the catalyst for her to join a protest march. When her friend dies during the demonstration she begins a romance with a PLO member Hani (Omar Metwally). Her father tries to get her to stop, but her teenage mind is adamant in her beliefs.

Life in the middle east during the 1967's Six Day War and the 1987 intifada is filmed effectively with the parched landscape of Jerusalem. The dry uninviting environment is countered by lives of it's inhabitants. Viewers will not be educated on the history of those turbulent time as the story is told from the character's point of view. Miral's change from obedient student to radical sympathizer is rushed through. Frieda Pinto photographs beautifully and her portrayal is heartfelt but the more remarkable story is that of Hind and what she accomplished in helping to educate the thousands of children with patience and love.

After the film's April release Juliano Merr-Khamis who plays Seikh Saabah in the film was shot to death outside the theater he established in a Palestinian refugee camp. Merr Khamis was a well known director and activist.
(Review by reesa)

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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Movies Scheduled for the Week of 4/10 - 4/16

The 2011 Dallas International Film Festival ended tonight. Hope some of y'all were able to come out and view some of the amazing films offered. It was a fun and exhausting 10 days. It will be nice to get back to our usual screening schedule. There's a couple movies where we don't have theaters listed. If you happen to have a pass, please drop us a note so we can fill in the calendar.

Reviews for the 35 films viewed will be slowly posted over the next couple of weeks. Thanks for your patience.

April 10 - 16, 2011


12:00 pm
Village Theater



7:30 pm



7:00 pm
tba - Dallas

7:00 pm
Fast Five
Cinemark West Plano

7:30 pm
The Conversation


7:00 pm
Fast Five
Plano Cinemark Legacy


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Saturday, April 9, 2011

The 2011 DALLAS International Film Festival Announces Award Winners

The 2011 DALLAS International Film Festival Announces
Award Winners

JESS + MOSS receives the $25,000 Target Filmmaker Award for Best Narrative Feature

ELEVATE receives the $25,000 Target Filmmaker Award for Best Documentary Feature

FIVE TIME CHAMPION receives the $20,000 in Cash, Goods and Services for the MPS Studios Texas Filmmaker Award

IF A TREE FALLS: A STORY OF THE EARTH LIBERATION FRONT receives the Environmental Visions Award

ZERO PERCENT receives the $10,000 Embrey Family Foundation Silver Heart Award

THE LEGEND OF BEAVER DAM, THE ROBBERY and PATHS OF HATE are named winners for Best Short Film, Student Short and Animated Short

Audience Awards go to SNOWMEN for Narrative Feature, WILD HORSE WILD RIDE for Documentary and THE LEGEND OF BEAVER DAM for Short

DALLAS, TX, April 9, 2011 – For the second year running, the “Dallas Film Society Honors” presented by the Arthur E. Benjamin Foundation provided an elegant forum for the awards presentation at the DALLAS International Film Festival presented by Cadillac. Clay Jeter’s JESS + MOSS was announced as the winner of the unrestricted $25,000 cash prize for the Target Filmmaker Award for Best Narrative Feature and Anne Buford‘s ELEVATE received the unrestricted $25,000 cash prize for the Target Filmmaker Award for Best Documentary Feature. On receiving her award, Buford declared that the $25,000 would be donated back to the SEEDS ACADEMY, the one-of-a-kind boarding school in Senegal for basketball players.

The Narrative Feature competition jury also gave a Special Jury Prize to Dave Boyle’s SURROGATE VALENTINE for Goh Nakamura’s acting and an Honorable Mention for Darragh Byrne’s PARKED. The documentary competition jury gave a Special Jury Prize to Joseph Mantegna’s NORMAN MAILER: THE AMERICAN.

Legendary actor, director and producer Peter Fonda presented the Target Filmmaker Awards to both the documentary and narrative feature winners. “Having the opportunity to award a filmmaker with a $25,000 cash prize is a significant moment for Target,” said Dustee Tucker Jenkins, Vice President of Communications for Target. “For Peter Fonda to present these awards is a very proud moment for us. He represents not only classic Hollywood but is an inspirational icon for all budding filmmakers and actors to actively want to realize their dreams. At Target we are dedicated to highlighting the arts in people’s lives.”

Dallas favorite Larry Hagman flew in to present IF A TREE FALLS: A STORY OF THE EARTH LIBERATION FRONT with the Environmental Visions Award. As green issues remain very close to Hagman’s heart, this award fits perfectly with his commitment to environmental conservation. Hagman also presented the winning high school and college students with cash prizes for the TXU Energy “Light Up the Red Carpet Student Film Contest”. Hagman also spoke of his excitement at returning to Dallas in the near future to start shooting the new pilot for DALLAS.

The stunning Steuben Crystal DALLAS Star Awards, courtesy of Neiman Marcus, were presented to Academy Award-nominated director Steve James (HOOP DREAMS, THE INTERRUPTERS), BAFTA-nominated writer and producer Scott Z. Burns (THE INFORMANT, THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM, AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH), and posthumously to Academy Award winner Horton Foote (TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, A TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL) for an incredible career that spanned over 50 years. Foote’s daughter Hallie was on hand to accept the award in memory of her father. The Texas Avery Animation Award presented by Reel FX Entertainment was given to Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois (HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON, LILO & STITCH). This marked the first year this award was shared by two recipientsbut Dean DeBlois accepted the award on behalf of them both as Chris Sanders was unable to attend. There were standing ovations for each Honoree.

Dallas Film Society President and CEO Tanya Foster said, “This was a really wonderful evening for the Dallas Film Society and the DALLAS International Film Festival. We showcased the incredible films that have screened at the festival this last week and thanks to the Arthur E. Benjamin Foundation we have the opportunity to put these award winners on a pedestal and congratulate them all for that they have achieved. Filmmaking is such an art and I am constantly in awe of the passion these filmmakers have for projects. Tonight’s event was our way of giving back to them.”

Berndt Mader’s FIVE TIME CHAMPION was the recipient of MPS Studios’ Texas Filmmaker Award and $20,000 in cash, goods and services. Clay Liford’s WUSS received a Special Jury Prize. The presentation was made by MPS Studios’ Meredith Stephens.
The festival’s first ever $10,000 Silver Heart Award was presented to Tim Skousen’s ZERO PERCENT by Lauren Embrey of the Embrey Family Foundation for the filmmaker’s dedication to fighting injustices and creating social change for the improvement of humanity. ZERO PERCENT had its world premiere at the festival.

It was a successful night for Jerome Sable as his short THE LEGEND OF BEAVER DAM won the Grand Jury Prize in the Shorts Competition as well as the Audience Award for Best Short. Special Mentions went to Lake Bell’s WORST ENEMY and Kazik Radwanski received a Special Mention for his directing in his film GREEN CRAYONS. The Grand Jury Prize for Student Short went to Johnny Ma’s THE ROBBERY with a Special Mention for Christopher Jarvis’s THE BIRDS UPSTAIRS. Reel FX Entertainment presented the award for Best Animated Short to Damian Nenow’s PATHS OF HATE.

Robert Kirbyson’s SNOWMEN won the Audience Award for Best Narrative, while Alex Dawson and Greg Gricus’s WILD HORSE WILD RIDE won for Best Documentary.

The winners of the Grand Jury Prizes for all the competitions will each receive movie magic budgeting and scheduling software bundles from Entertainment Partners.

Introduced by TXU Energy’s Chief Marketing Officer Michael Grasso, Larry Hagman presented the prizes for the TXU Energy “Light Up the Red Carpet” Student Film Contest. This year the cash grants went to both High Schools and Colleges. Kassidy Testut’s film LOOKING OUT FOR TEXAS won the $7500 award for Richardson High School, Christian Vasquez’s I WANT TO MAKE YOU HAPPY took the $5000 prize for Booker T. Washington High School and Olivia Pich’s THE AFTERMATH won the $2500 award for Garland High School. For colleges the prize money was split between the winners and their schools. Katherine Yarbrough of The Art Institute of Dallas share the $7500 award for QUEEN KILL-A-WATT, Aaron Carolina of the University of Texas at Arlington share the $5000 award for AFTER THE DARK and Dylan Voisard,and Patrick Perkins of the University of North Texas share the $2500 award for ZEPHYR.

DALLAS IFF Artistic Director James Faust said, “2011 has been a wonderful growth year for us. The fifth year was always pivotal in our minds and I am thrilled because this year Dallas has embraced us like never before. Ticket sales were up by 25 percent from last year throughout the festival, we have shown 169 films from 27 countries and I really think we have enjoyed much more cultural and ethnic diversity in our programming than ever before.”

Target Narrative Feature: JESS + MOSS
Dir: Clay Jeter

Target Documentary Feature: ELEVATE
Dir: Anne Buford

Honorable Mention: PARKED
Dir: Darragh Byrne

Special Jury Prize, Acting: SURROGATE VALENTINE, Goh Nakamura
Dir: Dave Boyle

MPS Studios Texas Filmmaker Award: FIVE TIMES CHAMPION
Dir: Berndt Mader

Special Jury Prize: WUSS
Dir: Clay Liford

Silver Heart Award:ZERO PERCENT
Dir: Tim Skousen

Dir: Marshall Curry

Grand Jury Prize Short: THE LEGEND OF BEAVER DAM
Dir: Jerome Sable

Special Mention Short, Directing: GREEN CRAYONS
Dir: Kazik Radwanski

Special Mention: WORST ENEMY
Dir: Lake Bell

Grand Jury Prize for Student Short: THE ROBBERY
Dir: Johnny Ma

Special Mention Student Short: THE BIRDS UPSTAIRS
Dir: Christopher Jarvis

Grand Jury Prize, Animated Short: PATHS OF HATE
Dir: Damian Nenow


Narrative Feature: SNOWMEN
Dir: Robert Kirbyson

Documentary Feature: WILD HORSE WILD RIDE
Dir: Alex Dawson, Greg Gricus

Dir: Jerome Sable


$7500 prize winner – LOOKING OUT FOR TEXAS – Richardson High School
Dir: Kassidy Testut
$5000 prize winner– I WANT TO MAKE YOU HAPPY – Booker T. Washington
Dir: Christian Vasquez. Writer: Spencer Kenney. Cinematographers: Amelia Mickelsen and Caryl Shiell
$2500 prize winner– THE AFTERMATH – Garland High School
Dir: Olivia Pich. Cinematographer: Jeffrey Rivas. Also Stafford Parrish


$7500 prize winner– QUEEN KILL-A-WATT – The Art Institute of Dallas
DIR: Katherine Yarbrough. Director of Photography: Nik Pavlov
$5000 prize winner– AFTER THE DARK – University of Texas at Arlington
Dir: Aaron Carolina
$2500 prize winner– ZEPHYR – University of North Texas
Creators: Dylan Voisard, Patrick Perkins
Music: William Naley


Will Canon– Director of 2010 festival favorite, BROTHERHOOD
Kim Yutani– Programmer for Sundance Film Festival, Outfest, RAW CUT Filmfest

Stephen Nemeth– Head of Rhino Films and has produced FEAR AND LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS, WHY DO FOOLS FALL IN LOVE and DOGTOWN AND Z-BOYS among many others.
Basil Tsiokos– Documentary Programming Associate for the Sundance Film Festival and consultant for filmmakers and film festivals. Regular contributor to indieWIRE.

David Gil, Jr. – Film Competition Programmer at the Austin Film Festival
Burton Gilliam– One of Hollywood’s most iconic character actors for 37 years with roles in PAPER MOON, BLAZING SADDLES, HONEYMOON IN VEGAS, FLETCH and many more.
Philip Wuntch– Film Critic of The Dallas Morning News from 1974 until his retirement in 2006. He was the first arts writer in the Dallas media to have the title “film critic”.

Rob Ganger– Head of Pollinator Media Group and is currently producing Earth Day Dallas 2011. Rob is also executive producer of award-winning documentary TRUDELL.
Michael Nash– Director of CLIMATE REFUGEES, the Environmental Visions Grand Jury Prize winner at the 2010 DALLAS IFF.
Troy Stuckey– Professor at the Huffington Department of Earth Sciences at SMU, Dallas

Topaz Adizes– Director of short films LAREDO, TEXAS, TRECE ANOS and CITY as well as the feature documentary AMERICANA.
Ryan Silbert– Independent filmmaker and founding partner of Toy Closet Films. Recent credits include Academy Award winner GOD OF LOVE as well as HOLY ROLLERS and THE GIRL IS IN TROUBLE.

Beth Spitalny–Writer and Director of PROCESSION – a previous DALLAS IFF Grand Jury Prize for Best Student Short.
Chase Whale – Co-founder, owner and Editor-in-Chief of GordonandtheWhale.com

Reel FX Entertainment- Funded in 1993, Reel FX is an award-winning creative studio where accomplished artists and preeminent technology converge to produce extraordinary creative solutions. Their services include visual effects, animation, design and creative editorial.

Embrey Family Foundation – The Foundation was established in 2004 for the purpose of supporting programs that advance human rights, healthy communities, the environment, education and creativity.

The fifth annual DALLAS International Film Festival kicked off on March 31, 2011, in the architecturally stunning Dallas Arts District. For the first time since the festival’s inception the Arts District hosted Opening Night to over 1,000 movie lovers. Academy Award winner and true beauty, Ann-Margret was honored with the first DALLAS Star Award for 2011. The evening then focused on an incredible tribute to Founder and Chairman Emeritus Liener Temerlin with a 10-minute reel featuring not only personal comments from President George Bush and President George W. Bush but also the who’s who of business luminaries in Texas. Ross and Margot Perot were the honorary chairs of the Temerlin tribute.

Highlights of the festival included a fun-filled family day sponsored by Bright Realty at AMC NorthPark, an H3 Celebration promoting heart health by the Baylor Jack and Jane Hamilton Heart and Vascular Hospital in association with the American Heart Association, Mission Foods and designer Abi Ferrin. Sunday, April 3, was named Latino Day culminating in a beautifully poetic event under the stars at the Nasher Sculpture Center featuring Euforia Live and the festival’s first artist in residence, Rolando Diaz.

Country music legend Jerry Jeff Walker packed theatres with Patrick Tourville’s OK BUCKAROOS before picking up a guitar and wowing an audience with two of his famous tunes.

FilmMatters – a new series of three panels produced by Stephen Nemeth, Melina McKinnon and Susan Thomson – kept audiences gripped as industry professionals from across the nation discussed with a standing room only audience how to promote social change through the art of film.

Michael Cain, Chairman of the DALLAS Film Society comments: “In five years, the DALLAS International Film Festival has been enjoyed by 240,000 people and we have flown in over 1,000 filmmakers to share their art with the city. In year five, the festival gave away $120,000 worth of prizes and we are thrilled that by opening in a $300,000,000 venue we are putting film on the same pedestal as other leading arts organizations. With extending the festival reach into Plano and Oak Cliff, we look forward to building on this growth in year six.”

DALLAS IFF’s closing weekend will feature a spotlight on Indian filmmaking along with encore presentations of award winners and sold-out screenings on Saturday, April 9, and Sunday, April 10. Other highlights will include the official closing night film BURKE AND HARE plus a very special 20th Anniversary screening of HOOK with screenwriter James V. Hart in attendance.

Other notable attendees at this year’s DALLAS International Film Festival included Dennis Quaid, Morgan Spurlock, Ari Graynor, Gil Cates Jr., Lou Taylor Pucci, Summer Glau, Judy Reyes, Andy Tennant, Theodore Shapiro, G.W. Bailey, Glenn Morshower, Drew Waters, Oscar Nunez, Ryan Lee, Constance Marks and James Miller, Garry Brown, Kyle Kirk, Dana Wheeler Nicholson, Betty Buckley, Ryan Lee and Bobby Coleman.

Overall, the 2011 DALLAS International Film Festival showcased 85 features and 84 shorts for a total of 169 films from 27 countries.

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Friday, April 8, 2011


It's 1977 France and Suzanne Pujol is the “trophy wife” of a umbrella factory CEO. It was her father's company and by marrying Robert, he took over the company. They are wealthy enough for servants, but Suzanne fills her days being the dutiful wife to her chauvinist philandering husband. Lately she's feeling like she needs more, especially since it's her birthday and only her children remembered.

Catherine Deneuve at 67 years old is still the most beautiful woman in the world. As Suzanne she is always perfectly coiffed and dressed even when jogging the image of well to do stay at home wife. She has two grown children, Joëlle (Judith Godrèche) her married daughter and Laurent (Jérémie Renier) an art major. When her husband Robert has trouble at the factory when he's kidnapped by the communist union workers Laurent who never wanted anything to do with the factory attempts to negotiate with the workers. He ends up getting beat up by his father and rescued by the factory workers. Suzanne is asked to intervene so in her typical fashion dolls up because in her mind she is thanking the factory workers for her lifestyle. Suzanne manages to quell the all male leaders buying time. She asks for help from socialist member of parliament Maurice Babin (Gérard Depardieu) with whom she had a hot tryst in the woods many years ago. He still harbors lingering feelings from that time and agrees. This brings the ire of Robert who does not want to give in to the workers and falls ill to heart trouble. Suzanne steps in full time to get the factory working again and in the process finds her voice. She discovers she's well suited to the task being assertive and resourceful. She even wins over Robert's secretary and lover Nadège (Karin Viard). She also gives her children jobs and they too also thrive. When Robert returns, Suzanne doesn't want to give up her position.

Director François Ozon adapted the story from a play by the same name adding Suzanne's political career at the end of the movie. The scenes are very theatrical. The sets, music, color, costumes and even the film titles have a true late 70's feel. The situations border on goofy French slapstick at times with Suzanne talking to the animals and the broad strokes painted of the characters. But it does offer some silly topsy turvy moments that you don't really care because it's just too much fun. In case you don't remember those days when women didn't have the rights they enjoy now it's a nice reminder of the times. It's French with subtitles, but don't let that keep you from seeing this old school delightful film.
(Review by reesa)

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Hanna lives in the snow covered arctic wilderness with her father who has intensely teaching her how to survive physical and environmental adversity. Her skills are strong enough that she can even defeat him. She says she's ready. He shows her a switch on a tracker and leaves it up to her to trigger it. He tells her once she does there's no turning back.

Saoirse Ronan with those clear blue eyes and shock of blond hair plays the cool collected and deadly Hanna. Raised in seclusion with only her father Eric (Eric Bana) as parent, teacher, and fight master, Hanna hasn't even heard music. Once Hanna turns on the tracker, Eric puts on a suit and takes off. Hanna has been rehearsing her personal back story to give to people who ask her, she also has memorized what she is to do once she is “rescued”. Marissa Wiegler has been in charge since Hanna's birth with finding Eric a one time agent who is now considered a rogue and dangerous. They take Hanna to some underground bunker where they attempt to question her. Hanna tells them she wants to see Marissa, and they send in a stand in which Hanna quickly dispatches and escapes her captors. They had taken her to Morocco where she falls in with a family traveling in a van. Hanna so expertly trained in most everything as no experience with anything electric, large groups of people, how a family interacts with a mom, dad and siblings or even being kissed. But her main goal it to get to the predetermined location to meet up with her father with ruthless operative Marissa hot on her trail.

Joe Wright who also directed Saoirse in Atonement works with a story and screenplay by Seth Lochhead and David Farr that deals with a long abandoned plan to breed super soldiers. Hanna only has a picture of her mother who was recruited and died while escaping the program. Cate Blanchett purrs with an over done southern accent while ordering lethal force in tracking down Eric and his daughter. The conflict of Hanna meeting the real world is nicely played out through Saoirse beautiful eyes. She is able to relay the cold blooded stare of an assassin or fascination with a light bulb and soften to accept the friendship of another young woman her own age. The Chemical Brothers soundtrack keeps the pace pulsating during the action sequences that include lots of hand to hand fighting and running. Lots and lots of running. A little bit of Bourne, Salt, and Bauer. Hanna is engaging, entertaining, over the top and kind of a weird role model for young women.
(Review by reesa)

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Arthur is a filthy rich spoiled alcoholic 30 year old child man who is going to lose his inheritance unless he marries Susan. They had dated briefly about three years ago, but he doesn't have any feeling for her or anyone else, but she is approved by his mother and his mother holds the purse strings. One day Arthur meets Naomi who is illegally working as a tour guide. Through their friendly and charming banter Arthur realizes that for the first time he really likes someone.

Modern Family director Jason Winer and screenwriter Peter Bayhman changed the 1981 story by Steve Gordon to update for the short attention span audience 30 years later. Arthur has a nanny Hobson (Helen Mirren) instead of a Butler. He still has his Bitterman (Luis Guzmán) as his driver/playmate. Russell Brand is a unrepentant immature drunk throwing money around like no tomorrow. Even getting tossed in jail for racing around New York City in his Batmobile doesn't make him blink at the consequences. He calls his mother by her first name Vivienne (Geraldine James) because they are practically strangers. She believes that marrying the socially acceptable Susan will make him more stable and grown up. When Arthur meets Naomi he fails to tell her that he's engaged instead he's enjoying their time together. To prove that he's more suitable for Naomi Arthur attempts to get a real job and go to an AA meeting neither of which are successful but the fact he's making an effort is an improvement over his past behavior. Hobson notices that he's happier than he's ever been and asks his mother to reconsider to no avail. Eventually Naomi discovers that's he's engaged and she refuses to see Arthur. Meanwhile Hobson gets sick and Arthur experiences what it feels like to care for someone else.

It's been awhile since the original Dudley Moore version of Arthur that younger movie going audiences will not be able to drawn comparisons. John Gielgud as the Butler Hobson for which he won a best supporting Oscar had a stern dry delivery that balanced Dudley Moore's antics. Russell Brand's childish Arthur makes Mirren's Hobson more like an indulgent mother. The whole child man concept has worn out it's welcome but it continues to be made into cinematic comedies. If you don't think too closely this movie it's has it's moments of fun and hilarity. Especially Garner as his tipsy fiancée trying to seduce him and getting stuck under his magnetic bed. Nick Nolte is funny and menacing as Susan's construction worker father who wants to leave his empire to his daughter. You either love or hate Russell Brand always playing the self absorbed buffoon in every movie even in The Tempest. OK for an afternoon at the theater.
(Review by reesa)

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Soul Surfer

Everyone should be familiar with the story of 13 year old surfer Bethany Hamilton who had her arm bitten off by a shark and went on to become a top surfing competitor. It horrified and inspired people around the world. Director/Producer Sean McNamara adapted the Bethany Hamilton's biographical book with 12 other screenwriters.

Bethany (AnnaSophia Robb) is in Hawaii living with her supportive parents Tom and Cheri Hamilton (Dennis Quaid and Helen Hunt) and her two older brothers Noah and Timmy (Ross Thomas and Chris Brochu). Her dream with her best friend Alana Blanchard (Lorraine Nicholson) is to compete in surfing contests. They spend most of their time in the water even right before going to their outdoor church service. They are a handsome, blond, nuclear family unit all straight teeth and good intentions. After a good show at a competition both Bethany and Alana are offered to be sponsored by a major surfing company who want them to wear their clothing line and model their bikini's (because that's always appropriate for 13 year old young women). But one morning while surfing with Alana and her dad and brother a tiger shark bites off Bethany's arm just below the shoulder. Alana's father Holt (Kevin Sorbo) fashions a tourniquet ouf of the surfboard leash. Even though she lost about 60% of her blood, Bethany remains calm and focused. After recovering in seven days, the first thing she asks is when she can get back into the water. While everyone around her is feeling for her loss, Bethany tries to remain strong for them. She only breaks down with Rachel (Carrie Underwood) the missionary leader in her church. She decides to go with the church group to Thailand after the tsunami where she helps some young kids go back into the water.

Dennis Quaid and Helen Hunt are very good as the parents dealing with how to encourage and support their daughter to overcome and endure. And they also still look good in swim suits. AnnaSophia looks too old and savvy to be 13 and is way shorter than the real Bethany who was more of a goofy awkward young teenager. Look for Craig T. Nelson as the family doctor. The photography is well done especially the surfing shots and the underwater sequences when Bethany is knocked about under the crashing waves. The film pacing and editing plays more like a Lifetime Channel movie and you can almost tell where the commercial breaks will be inserted. Most Christian based films are aimed at their target audiences while Soul Surfer is being marketed to the general public. Granted Christianity is an important element in Bethany's book But unsuspecting audiences of different faiths may find the heavy handed religious ploy annoying and getting in the way of the real message of the story of perseverance brings good fortune.
(Review by reesa)

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Closing Night Film to be BURKE AND HARE

The DALLAS International Film Festival Announces


The DALLAS International Film Festival Announces

Closing Night Film to be BURKE AND HARE

The DALLAS Film Society Honors to Feature

Dallas, TX, April 5, 2011 – The DALLAS International Film Festival presented by Cadillac has announced the Closing Night film will be John Landis’ BURKE & HARE. The screening will take place on April 9 at 8PM at the Texas Theatre in Oak Cliff, Dallas.

Based on the true story about the famous murderers, BURKE AND HARE follows the hapless exploits of these two men as they fall into the highly profitable business of providing cadavers for the medical fraternity in Nineteenth Century Edinburgh, then the centre of medical learning. The one thing they were short of was bodies. The film stars Tom Wilkinson, Tim Curry, Simon Pegg, Andy Serkis, Jessica Hynes and Isla Fisher.

The DALLAS International Film Festival also announced that PETER FONDA will be attending the DALLAS Film Society Honors on April 8, 2011 to present the Target Filmmaker Awards to the best narrative and documentary feature film as chosen by an independent jury of filmmakers and film professionals. The winner from each category will receive an unrestricted $25,000 cash prize courtesy of Target.

LARRY HAGMAN will also be attending the DALLAS Film Society Honors to present the Environmental Visions Award to the film that best communicates the importance of environmental conservation through the art of film. Known for being incredibly eco-conscious the presentation of this award ties in perfectly with Hagman’s dedication to green issues.

Finally, ANDY TENNANT (director of THE BOUNTY HUNTER, HITCH, SWEET HOME ALABAMA) will be in Dallas on April 6 to speak at the Young Presidents Organization. He will be walking the festival’s red carpet on April 6 at the Angelika Dallas between 6-7PM.

The DALLAS International Film Festival will run March 31 – April 10, 2011. Passes and tickets are currently on sale: available via online (www.dallasfilm.org), phone (214.782.9168) and in person at the FAUXCADES Box Office: 5321 E. Mockingbird Lane, Ste 100, Dallas.

The DALLAS Film Society Honors to Feature

Dallas, TX, April 5, 2011 – The DALLAS International Film Festival presented by Cadillac has announced the Closing Night film will be John Landis’ BURKE & HARE. The screening will take place on April 9 at 8PM at the Texas Theatre in Oak Cliff, Dallas.

Based on the true story about the famous murderers, BURKE AND HARE follows the hapless exploits of these two men as they fall into the highly profitable business of providing cadavers for the medical fraternity in Nineteenth Century Edinburgh, then the centre of medical learning. The one thing they were short of was bodies. The film stars Tom Wilkinson, Tim Curry, Simon Pegg, Andy Serkis, Jessica Hynes and Isla Fisher.

The DALLAS International Film Festival also announced that PETER FONDA will be attending the DALLAS Film Society Honors on April 8, 2011 to present the Target Filmmaker Awards to the best narrative and documentary feature film as chosen by an independent jury of filmmakers and film professionals. The winner from each category will receive an unrestricted $25,000 cash prize courtesy of Target.

LARRY HAGMAN will also be attending the DALLAS Film Society Honors to present the Environmental Visions Award to the film that best communicates the importance of environmental conservation through the art of film. Known for being incredibly eco-conscious the presentation of this award ties in perfectly with Hagman’s dedication to green issues.

Finally, ANDY TENNANT (director of THE BOUNTY HUNTER, HITCH, SWEET HOME ALABAMA) will be in Dallas on April 6 to speak at the Young Presidents Organization. He will be walking the festival’s red carpet on April 6 at the Angelika Dallas between 6-7PM.

The DALLAS International Film Festival will run March 31 – April 10, 2011. Passes and tickets are currently on sale: available via online (www.dallasfilm.org), phone (214.782.9168) and in person at the FAUXCADES Box Office: 5321 E. Mockingbird Lane, Ste 100, Dallas.

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