The Dallas Movie Screening Group

This is the homepage of the Dallas Movie Screening Group. To join our mailing list you must sign up at our group page on Yahoo. You will then be connected to receive notices on how to find passes to the local screenings in the DFW area. It's up to you to pickup or sign up for passes. You can also barter, trade or just giveaway passes you don't want, need or share with other members of the group. Please read the instructions on the Yahoo page very carefully before posting. This group is closely moderated so that your mail box is not full of spam or other unnecessary mail. We appreciate everyone's consideration and cooperation.

You can use this homepage for posting comments, reviews, and other things that cannot be posted to the group. Of course spam is not allowed. Thanks!

To join the Dallas Movie Screening Yahoo Group:
dallasmoviescreenings-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

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, February 27, 2015

Focus



Will Smith is generally box office magic, but lost some popularity cred with After Earth. Now he's got his swagger back better than ever in a slick contemporary movie about a con man and his beautiful intern. Directed and written by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa (both did I Love You Phillip Morris and Bad Santa) moves the scenes with bright colors and exotic locations. It also gives Smith a chance to play a more romantic character which he gives a bit of angst and sexual wow-ness. For a February movie it is better than expected.

Smith plays Nicky who uses his con skills to get a seat in an exclusive restaurant. He catches the eye of the beautiful Jess (Margot Robbie) who seduces him to go to her room. Unfortunately for her, he recognizes her game and calls her on it. She is a already a competent pick pocket herself and follows him until he agrees to teach her some skills of the trade. He agrees to take her on and they hit the Superbowl in New Orleans where he has a team of 30 pick pockets working together to lift whatever they can in the crowded streets. They gain a million dollar haul of items which is carried by Nicky to be divided after everyone returns to their homes. On the way out of town, they go to the big game in an exclusive sky box, where Nicky proceeds to make outrageous bets with an Asian millionaire. Jess gets freaked out when Nicky starts to take their haul as collateral. Afterwards, Nicky gives Jess her cut and says goodbye which breaks her heart since they have been getting it on.

Three years later, Nicky is running another con in Buenos Aires with a billionaire international race car owner,Garriga (Rodrigo Santoro). He finds Jess is there and all over Garriga. She tells him that she is with Garriga now and he should leave. The story begins to get complicated at this point because Nicky still has a huge con to accomplish. His first big job since Jess left him. Garriga's head of security Owens (Gerald McRaney) suspects the relationship between Nicky and Jess.

Can't really explain much else without giving stuff away. Suffice to say that Smith looks healthy and pumped probably to have a believable romance with a woman 20 years younger. Margot who stole The Wolf of Wall Street, is stunningly gorgeous and it's easy to understand why Nicky would get distracted in his “focus” and his cool is challenged by feelings of jealousy. It's a fun romp, that is easy on the eyes and a good wintertime distraction. However you may be a little more careful with your wristwatch and wallet when walking through crowds.
(Review by Reesa)



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Sunday, February 22, 2015

Academy Awards Winners 2015



Best Picture: "Birdman"

Best Actress: Julianne Moore, "Still Alice"

Best Actor: Eddie Redmayne, "The Imitation Game"

Best Director:
Alejandro González Iñárritu, "Birdman"

Best Original Screenplay: Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Jr. & Armando Bo, "Birdman"

Best Adapted Screenplay: Graham Moore, "The Imitation Game"

Best Supporting Actor: J.K. Simmons, "Whiplash"

Best Supporting Actress: Patricia Arquette, "Boyhood"

Best Original Song:
"Glory" from "Selma" - Music and lyrics by John Stephens and Lonnie Lynn

Best Original Score: Alexandre Desplat, "The Grand Budapest Hotel"

Best Costume Design: Milena Canonero, "The Grand Budapest Hotel"

Best Makeup and Hairstyling:
Frances Hannon and Mark Coulier, "The Grand Budapest Hotel"

Best Sound Mixing:
"Whiplash"

Best Sound Editing:
"American Sniper"

Best Sound Effects:
"Interstellar"

Best Production Design:
"The Grand Budapest Hotel" - Production Design: Adam Stockhausen; Set Decoration: Anna Pinnock

Best Cinematography: Emmanuel Lubezki, "Birdman"

Best Film Editing: Tom Cross, "Whiplash"

Best Foreign Language Film:
"Ida" (Poland), Paweł Pawlikowski, director

Best Live Action Short Film:
"The Phone Call," Mat Kirkby, director, and James Lucas, writer

Best Documentary Short Subject:
"Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1," Perry Film

Best Documentary Feature:
"CitizenFour," Laura Poitras, Mathilde Bonnefoy and Dirk Wilutzky

Best Animated Short Film:
"Feast," Patrick Osborne, director, and Kristina Reed, producer







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Movies Scheduled 2/22-2/28

Well tonight is the biggest night for movies. If you have no plans yet to watch it head over to Angelika Dallas tonight and watch it with Big Fan Boy! They will start giving out tickets at 11 a.m. so head on over and get your ticket. They will have food (while it lasts) and prizes!! So why not watch it with some good people?


If you have any questions please email me at damitdaina@hotmail.com


Sunday Feb 22nd

A Night of Hollywood Gold 6:00 p.m. Angelika Dallas


Monday Feb 23rd


Tuesday Feb 24th

Focus 7:30 p.m. AMC Parks Arlington


Wednesday Feb. 25th

The Lazarus Effect 7:30 p.m. SMG Spring Valley
Focus 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas


Thursday Feb. 26th

Cinderella 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas
A La Mala 7:30 p.m. Cinemark 17


Friday Feb. 27th


Saturday Feb. 28th



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2015 FILM INDEPENDENT SPIRIT AWARD





2015 FILM INDEPENDENT SPIRIT AWARD


BEST FEATURE
(Award given to the Producer. Executive Producers are not awarded.)

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (WINNER)
Producers: Alejandro G. Iñárritu, John Lesher, Arnon Milchan, James W. Skotchdopole

Boyhood
Producers: Richard Linklater, Jonathan Sehring, John Sloss, Cathleen Sutherland

Love is Strange
Producers: Lucas Joaquin, Lars Knudsen, Ira Sachs, Jayne Baron Sherman, Jay Van Hoy

Selma
Producers: Christian Colson, Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, Oprah Winfrey

Whiplash
Producers: Jason Blum, Helen Estabrook, David Lancaster, Michael Litvak


BEST DIRECTOR

Richard Linklater (WINNER)
Boyhood


Damien Chazelle
Whiplash

Ava DuVernay
Selma

Alejandro G. Iñárritu
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

David Zellner
Kumiko the Treasure Hunter


BEST SCREENPLAY

Dan Gilroy (WINNER)
Nightcrawler


Scott Alexander & Larry Karaszewski
Big Eyes

J.C. Chandor
A Most Violent Year

Jim Jarmusch
Only Lovers Left Alive

Ira Sachs & Mauricio Zacharias
Love is Strange


BEST FIRST FEATURE
(Award given to the director and producer)

Nightcrawler (WINNER)
Director: Dan Gilroy
Producers: Jennifer Fox, Tony Gilroy, Jake Gyllenhaal, David Lancaster, Michel Litvak


A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night
Director: Ana Lily Amirpour
Producers: Justin Begnaud, Sina Sayyah

Dear White People
Director/Producer: Justin Simien
Producers: Effie T. Brown, Ann Le, Julia Lebedev, Angel Lopez, Lena Waithe

Obvious Child
Director: Gillian Robespierre
Producer: Elisabeth Holm

She's Lost Control
Director/Producer: Anja Marquardt
Producers: Mollye Asher, Kiara C. Jones


BEST FIRST SCREENPLAY

Justin Simien (WINNER)
Dear White People


Desiree Akhavan
Appropriate Behavior

Sara Colangelo
Little Accidents

Justin Lader
The One I Love

Anja Marquardt
She's Lost Control


BEST FEMALE LEAD

Julianne Moore (WINNER)
Still Alice


Marion Cotillard
The Immigrant

Rinko Kikuchi Kumiko
The Treasure Hunter

Jenny Slate
Obvious Child

Tilda Swinton
Only Lovers Left Alive



BEST MALE LEAD

Michael Keaton (WINNER)
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)


André Benjamin
Jimi: All Is By My Side

Jake Gyllenhaal
Nightcrawler

John Lithgow
Love is Strange

David Oyelowo
Selma


BEST SUPPORTING FEMALE

Patricia Arquette (WINNER)
Boyhood


Jessica Chastain
A Most Violent Year

Carmen Ejogo
Selma

Andrea Suarez Paz
Stand Clear of the Closing Doors

Emma Stone
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)


BEST SUPPORTING MALE

J.K. Simmons (WINNER)
Whiplash


Riz Ahmed
Nightcrawler

Ethan Hawke
Boyhood

Alfred Molina
Love is Strange

Edward Norton
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)


BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

Emmanuel Lubezki (WINNER)
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Darius Khondji
The Immigrant

Sean Porter
It Felt Like Love

Lyle Vincent
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night

Bradford Young
Selma


BEST EDITING

Tom Cross (WINNER)
Whiplash


Sandra Adair
Boyhood

John Gilroy
Nightcrawler

Ron Patane
A Most Violent Year

Adam Wingard
The Guest


BEST DOCUMENTARY
(Award given to the director and producer)


CITIZENFOUR (WINNER)
Director/Producer: Laura Poitras
Producers: Mathilde Bonnefoy, Dirk Wilutzky


20,000 Days on Earth
Directors: Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard
Producers: Dan Bowen, James Wilson

Stray Dog
Director: Debra Granik
Producer: Anne Rosellini

The Salt of the Earth
Directors: Juliano Ribeiro Salgado and Wim Wenders
Producer: David Rosier

Virunga
Director/Producer: Orlando von Einsiedel
Producer: Joanna Natasegara


JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD
Given to the best feature made for under $500,000. Award given to the writer, director and producer. Executive Producers are not awarded.

Land Ho! (WINNER)
Writers/Directors: Aaron Katz & Martha Stephens
Producers: Christina Jennings, Mynette Louie, Sara Murphy


Blue Ruin
Writer/Director: Jeremy Saulnier
Producers: Richard Peete, Vincent Savino, Anish Savjani

It Felt Like Love
Writer/Director/Producer: Eliza Hittman
Producers: Shrihari Sathe, Laura Wagner

Man From Reno
Writer/Director: Dave Boyle
Writers: Joel Clark, Michael Lerman
Producer: Ko Mori

Test
Writer/Director/Producer: Chris Mason Johnson
Producer: Chris Martin


BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM
(Award given to the director)


Ida (Poland) (WINNER)
Director: Pawel Pawlikowski

Force Majeure (Sweden)
Director: Ruben Östlund

Leviathan (Russia)
Director: Andrey Zvyagintsev

Mommy (Canada)
Director: Xavier Dolan

Norte, the End of History (Philippines)
Director: Lav Diaz

Under the Skin (United Kingdom)
Director: Jonathan Glazer


ROBERT ALTMAN AWARD
(Given to one film's director, casting director and ensemble cast)


Inherent Vice
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
Casting Director: Cassandra Kulukundis
Ensemble Cast: Josh Brolin, Martin Donovan, Jena Malone, Joanna Newsom, Joaquin Phoenix, Eric Roberts, Maya Rudolph, Martin Short Serena Scott Thomas, Benicio Del Toro, Katherine Waterston, Michael Kenneth Williams, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon



SPECIAL DISTINCTION AWARD


Foxcatcher
Director/Producer: Bennett Miller
Producers: Anthony Bregman, Megan Ellison, Jon Kilik
Writers: E. Max Frye, Dan Futterman
Actors: Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo, Channing Tatum



18th ANNUAL PIAGET PRODUCERS AWARD

The 18th annual Producers Award, sponsored by Piaget, honors emerging producers who, despite highly limited resources, demonstrate the creativity, tenacity and vision required to produce quality, independent films. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by Piaget.

Chris Ohlson (WINNER)
Chad Burris
Elisabeth Holm


21st ANNUAL KIEHL'S SOMEONE TO WATCH AWARD
The 21st annual Someone to Watch Award, sponsored by Kiehl's Since 1851, recognizes a talented filmmaker of singular vision who has not yet received appropriate recognition. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by Kiehl's Since 1851.

H. (WINNER)
Directors: Rania Attieh & Daniel Garcia


A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night
Director: Ana Lily Amirpour

The Retrieval
Director: Chris Eska

20th ANNUAL LENSCRAFTERS TRUER THAN FICTION AWARD

The 20th annual Truer Than Fiction Award, sponsored by LensCrafters is presented to an emerging director of non-fiction features who has not yet received significant recognition. The award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by LensCrafters.

The Kill Team (WINNER)
Director: Dan Krauss


Approaching the Elephant
Director: Amanda Rose Wilder

Evolution of a Criminal
Director: Darius Clark Monroe

The Last Season
Director: Sara Dosa







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Saturday, February 21, 2015

South Asian Film Festival





FIRST-EVER DALLAS/FORT WORTH SOUTH ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES ITS LINE-UP OF 14 SHORTS, DOCS & FEATURES


(Dallas, TX – Feb. 16, 2015) Fourteen films, exploring the unique circumstances and complex stories of South Asians living in America, India, Nepal, Australia and Singapore, make their Texas, U.S. and world premieres at the FIRST-EVER Dallas/Fort Worth South Asian Film Festival (DFW SAFF) from Friday, February 27 to Sunday, March 1, 2015, at the Angelika Film Center in Plano (Shops at Legacy).

Produced by JINGO Media, a Dallas and NYC-based PR and events management boutique firm, Etihad Airways & Jet Airways, now offering non-stop flights from DFW to Abu Dhabi, Cambria Hotels & Suites, a brand new hotel property at the Shops at Legacy, and Crow Collection of Asian Art, unveiling its brand new collection of South Asian art, DFW SAFF will bring together directors, actors, producers, community organizations, corporate brands and South Asian cinephiles, over a three-day period. Here are the films that have been consciously-curated for the festival:

•Opening Night Film: Brahmin Bulls

•Shorts & Docs: Katiyabaaz, Asian Pride Project, Fire in the Blood, Tomorrow We Disappear

•Women’s Programming: Blouse, Happy Raksha Bandhan, Sold (centerpiece feature)

•Children’s Programming: Ravi and Jane, The World of Goopi & Bagha

•Youth Programming: Therapy, Just Friends, Acceptance

•Closing Night Film: Rough Book

Community sponsors & partners of DFW SAFF include: The Container Store, Patrick O’Hara Salon, VelvetCase.com, Living Dreams Foundation, Parish Episcopal School, Milaap, Shraman South Asian Museum and Learning Center Foundation, Forever Rakhi, Indie Meme, Arya Dance Company and New Friends New Life.

Our media partners include: Selig Polyscope Company, Radio Azad, Saavn.com, Radio Hot Pepper, Radio Adda and Desiplaza TV.

“We are so proud and humbled that 30 different community organizations and brands are coming together to support our first-time festival,” said DFW SAFF Festival Director and Principal/CEO of JINGO Media, Jitin Hingorani. “We are certain that North Texas audiences will embrace this festival by giving all our international guests a warm Texas welcome and, hopefully, a few standing ovations.” In addition to film screenings, the festival boasts an opening night red carpet, post-screening Q&As with filmmakers in attendance, after parties and plenty of networking opportunities. For more information and to purchase ticket, please visit www.dfwsaff.com.


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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Energize Our World




America became an industrialized nation several decades ago. The energy used in everyday business is explored in “Energize Our World”. The film brings to reality the fact that natural resources are being used with no conscious effort for renewability. It explores the people and companies who are actually trying to respect this environment and realize the finite stature of our planet. Several very interesting processes were shown including the cleaning of water and use of it to stimulate electricity. There was another company in Malaga, Spain which provided meters in houses so the owners could track electricity usage. This company also utilized the electric car model which took energy from the grid but gave back energy too. Electricity to stimulate cars is portrayed as significantly less costly than gasoline or diesel. Another company used carbon dioxide, a waste product, to dye clothing with surprisingly no chemicals. There is an architect in the film who designed a building thinking about how resources can be used to maximum capacity. Even the US, which is said to be elementary in recycling, has a company in Georgia making drinks with reusable bottles. The director, Susan Sember, employed the use of serene looks of nature and cities to make this piece appealing the eye. Cities with the coast bordering them like Malaga in Spain looked beautiful with the buildings tall against the water. I thoroughly enjoyed watching “Energize Our World” and I personally have an issue with waste on this planet.

The film brought much needed attention to young people especially about how to become better stewards of our home. I think what was most important that was expressed was how environmental problems will be our issue very soon. The narrator had an older and solid voice that engaged me into focusing to what was being said. People who were interviewed seem to have a passion for recycling and modernizing our energy usage procedures. The fact that multiple companies are trying to create their better nation is incredible to me. We need documentaries like this to show real fact and maybe fiction can be set aside for a while. The use of renewable energy is highly advocated by this project and I think that is the only way to go. The director’s use of going all around the world to discover companies was incredibly productive. This is the type of project that needs to spread into schools, universities, and many families homes.
(Review by Wyatt Head)



“Energizing Our World” Roundtable Dallas, TX

Question 1) (To Executive Producer Joni Bounds) What is your background?

A: I have a background in the music industry. I graduated from TCU. I moved to New York and became a music promoter doing events and fundraising. Then I went into education. I had two sons. I came across a 1984 story and got into film-making. I wrote a story for a feature film. It was very hard to find funds for a wanting to be $10 million film. I then thought that a documentary about social issues would be interesting. I arrived at a documentary idea with filmmaker Susan Sember.

(In regards to the film)
We started filming in Costa Rica. We wanted to focus on specific topics. The initial title was “Energy to Endure”. The then film was shown at the United Nations. Susan liked great technology like the 4K high-definition. Some of the film footage can actually be 3-D. We ended up with an interview with Bruno Stagno who is in the film. He opened the door for us. We contacted several corporations. Geert Woerlee, although hard to get, liked the story and did an interview with us as well. Passion really comes from the people we interviewed. The interviews just grew and grew. We went to Sage. The people there were trying to reach out to young people to take better care of our planet. We wanted to reach a bigger audience than just a normal documentary. Everyone we met was truthful about what they were doing. A person was interviewed who gets sludge from the refineries and turns it into bio-diesel fuel. The topic of the film could go on and on. I am inspired as a filmmaker. I would like everybody to get in on this issue.

2) Why Costa Rica?

A: They have a sustainable energy area. All wild life is free there. Costa Rica embraces the simple things of life. They had banana plantations. The farmers used sun, wind, and their own irrigation. Costa Rica uses the basics. There has been years of prior unsustainability but it has changed over the years.

3) The feature film, what is it?


A: “Sun In the Night Sky” is the name. It is based on a true story. I knew the person who told me the story. The film explains the socio-economic differences between plantation workers and owners. The story involves a love story and has a silver lining.

4) How did the narrator Edward James Olmos come into the film?


A: We caught him while he was filming another project. He became interested after looking into what we were doing. It was one thing after the other which became a very fast process.

3) What did you mean that by getting the Netherlands involved you could get everybody?


A: I reached out to Geert Woerlee over there and he thought about it. He’s such a famous guy in the industry, it just happened. He could be a mentor.

4) What are the other festivals you’ve been in?


A: We went into the Santa Barbara film festival. The director of the festival introduced the film. We didn’t realize who our competitors were in the category. We were blown away by our competitors. We don’t think we will be in DIFF because we’re five minutes too short. We want to show it to young people. The Thin-line film festival producer got us sponsors for our events there. Our next place is Palm Beach International film festival. We also want to reach out to the Hispanic community because half of the film is in Spanish speaking places. We want young Hispanics to see it as well.

5) How did you get the daughter of your interviewee, Jim Scott, involved?


A: We reached out to them because they have a thoroughly recyclable drink bottle. It was a spontaneous interview of Natalie (the daughter). She is an SMU student which was awesome. She was refreshing. She’s aware of the people at SMU. Natalie said fellow SMU-ians are not having the best habits. Whatever minor things one can do to take care of the earth is good.

6) Have you heard of Earth Day in Dallas?

A: I know the people who head it up. I want to work with them.

7) What has been challenging in producing the film?

A: Funding was hard. We’re getting sponsors for festivals and more attention from distributors. Having to become more flexible was hard too. It will work out if it’s supposed to.

8) You wanted to be separated from politics?

A: We had conflicts in belief even in the film. Politics would be another film.




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McFarland USA



Nothing beats and inspirational movie based on a true story. In the hands of Walt Disney Pictures, it's a slam dunk when it comes to making sure there's not a dry eye in the house. Who knew about the small town of McFarland, just north of Bakersfield and south of Fresno, ever had 24 California state championships in cross country from 1987 – 2013. Directed by Niki Caro (Whale Rider, North Country) with a script by Christopher Cleveland, Bettina Gilois and Grant Thompson, the story begins in 1987. As expected there are some social issues and racial prejudices that are prevalent to the times that are still important now. But it doesn't hit you over the head with it's discussion. The movie keeps it's heart.

Kevin Costner plays James White, a high school teacher/coach who can't seem to keep his anger in check. He's come to the end of his career with the only place he can find a job. A small community mostly inhabited by Mexican pickers. His wife (Maria Bello) and his daughters (Morgan Saylor and Elsie Fisher) are a little appalled by their new abode and community. White is assigned as the P.E and earth science teacher and over qualified as the assistant football coach. The head coach takes an instant dislike to him when White keeps a kid with a concussion from the field and kicks him out. After White notices that some of the teenage pickers who run back and forth from the fields to school are fast, he decides to start a cross country team to compete in California's first state championship. The fastest of the seven runners, Thomas Valles (Carlos Pratts) has family issues. The Diaz brothers David (Rafael Martinez), Damacio (Michael Aguero) and Danny (Ramiro Rodriguez) have to put their field work first. Johnny Sameniego (Hector Duran) and Jose Cardenas (Johnny Ortiz) round out the team.

Everyone calls White “homes” or “blanco” and he puts up with a fair amount of attitude and ribbing from the team. Nobody really thinks that White can make anything worthwhile from this endeavor. The boys don't have decent shoes and White tracks them with a kitchen timer. The families are not always supportive as they have years of negativity regarding the future of their children. It's hard enough to work in the fields to earn enough to live, much less spend hours training for races. That's something rich white kids do. That and golf. White who knows this is his last chance at teaching has to learn how to communicate with the boys and their families, even if it means eating eight enchiladas.

It's a satisfying story even though you know what happens in the end. The races are exciting and the community support is heart warming. Costner plays White low keyed and not as the Caucasian savior of the little brown people. He manages to keep his character flawed and human. The last few minutes of the movie revisits the real life men and how they managed to get out of the dead end future because of their ability to run and win. Bring plenty of tissue.
(Review by reesa)


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The Last Five Years




Unless you are a Off-Broadway musical nerd, you probably have not heard of The Last Five years which was written by Jason Robert Brown. It premiered in Chicago's Northlight Theater in 2001 and has numerous productions in several countries though out the years. The movie version is directed and written by Richard LaGravenese (Beautiful Creatures, P.S. I Love You, Freedom Writers). The entire story is told in song by Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan covering the last five years of their relationship together.

The movie begins with Cathy (Anna Kendrick) lamenting the ending of her marriage with Jamie (Jeremy Jordon). The song “Still Hurting” is sung while Cathy sits sad, washed out in her empty New York brownstone, with pictures of her and Jamie in happier times. The next song “Shiksa Goddess” is told from Jamie's point of view from the beginning of their relationship. Unless you are already familiar with the story, it's hard to understand that Cathy's story is told from the end to beginning, and Jamie's is beginning to the end. Their stories connect when their time intersects at their wedding.

Cathy is a struggling actress who has not been able to find work and ends up having to go to Ohio to work the summer musical theater program. Jamie is a novelist who becomes successful and his book becomes a number one best seller. His rise to fame is fast and heady. He's happy and suddenly tempted even though he loves Cathy. He's young and it's hard to resist. Cathy, although she is supportive as when she sings “I'm Part of That”, seems to be just a prop at the numerous parties that are given for Jamie. She becomes too frustrated even though Jamie sings “If I Didn't Believe in You”, it's just not enough to go to events and watch his fan girls drape themselves all over him.

They can both see that it's falling apart. Kendricks wrings the heartstrings when she sings “See I'm Smiling” when he comes to see her in Ohio, but has to go back that night. She was hoping they could work it out that weekend and it's her birthday. It ends in argument. In their happier days they are both emotionally and physically drawn to each other. But life has a way of making things difficult and the last song “Goodbye Until Tomorrow/I Could Never Rescue You” is sad and the audience is left with a small hope they could find each other again.

The whole movie goes from one song to another with the lyrics propelling the story. Plus the whole movie is only sung by the two main stars. On stage the feeling is probably more stagnant, while the movie version travels around New York giving it more life. Kendrick has proven her bona fide movie creds, while Jordan is mostly known for his role as Jimmy in Smash. Both have wonderful voices that give this story some emotional angst. This is for those who really love musicals.
(Review by reesa)


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The Duff



For most of y'all who don't know, which is pretty much everyone, a D.U.F.F means Designated Ugly Fat Friend. Another typical teenage bully tactic to undermine the already fragile psyche of high schoolers. In this comedy by Ari Sandel and written by Josh A. Cagan is based on the novel of the same name by Kody Keplinger. The Duff's purpose is to serve as a gateway to info mining on the Duff's more attractive friends. Usually the Duff is just happy that someone is talking to them and doesn't realize they are just being used.

Bianca Piper (Mae Whitman) is a scrubby nerdy senior who has two beautiful besties Casey and Jessica (Bianca Santos and Skyler Samuels). Everything is great with them until Wesley (Robbie Amell), her next door neighbor, womanizer and top jock lets her know that she's their Duff. That she is only allowed with them to make them look better. Instead of trusting her childhood friends, Bianca spirals into a harpy meltdown and alienates them in order to set herself up with a new identity.

Her mom (Allison Janney) had fallen into a depression after her divorce until she reinvented her self as a pantsuit wearing motivational speaker. She tries to offer Bianca some advice, but instead Bianca enlists the help of Wesley to help erase the label in exchange for helping him pass chemistry. Since Bianca has a crush on a guitar playing Toby (Nick Eversman), Wesley advises her on creating a new look and challenges her on how to speak to males by approaching random guys at the mall. This is all fun and dandy, but the movie's mean girl Madison (Bella Thorne) who aims to be the next reality star uses her minions ever ready camera to capture some of Bianca's more embarrassing exercises them broadcasting them via social media.

Teen movies come and go, but few stand the test of time like John Hughes films that speak to the more universal truth of surviving high school. There are lots of goofy moments like Ken Jeong is a blast as the editor of the school newspaper. Whitman (Arrested Development and Parenthood) is wonderfully endearing as Bianca. She's funny, smart and unpredictable. Her best friends are nicely portrayed as being loyal and uncatty. The viral ruin of her reputation is met with brutal honesty, but Whitman infuses Bianca with resilience and spunk which keeps this from being another stupid teen stereotype.
(Review by reesa)


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Sunday, February 15, 2015

Movies Scheduled 2/15=2/21

Sorry this is going to be short and sweet. I have had a very stressful week.

Make sure to look at your tickets I may have the times wrong below. Your tickets will have the right time.


If you have any questions please email me at damitdaina@hotmail.com

Sunday Feb. 15th


Monday Feb. 16th


Tuesday Feb. 17th

Space Dandy 7:30 p.m. Alamo Drafthouse


Wednesday Feb. 18th

The Duff 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
McFarland, USA 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
Brotherhood of Blades 7:30 p.m. Alamo Drafthouse


Thursday Feb. 19th

The Duff 7:30 p.m. Cinemark West
Hot Tub Time Machine 2 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
Focus 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
Focus 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas


Friday Feb. 20th


Saturday Feb. 21st



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Friday, February 13, 2015

Fifty Shades of Grey




Start with a poor literary effort, sourced from Twilight, turns it into a poorly written script about a rather controversial subject/relationship and what do you get? A potential, albeit controversial, hit that draws in its millions of fans, the curious and the questioning while building a massive wall between them and the uneducated, uninformed, conservative, religious right, running away in horror with arms waving in the air. If you read the book, the film will seem very familiar as it follows the sophomoric prose quite closely. Seattle and the Pacific Northwest provides the scenic backdrop to the budding romance between billionaire young-cutie-with-a-secret, Christian Grey and naive ingénue college gal. Anastasia Steele.

First off, Dakota Johnson, offspring of Hollywood parents Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson truly holds her own, portraying Ana as a bright, fresh-faced young innocent, clearly out of her "white bread" league when she meets CG for an interview for her college paper. After the initial meeting and while the relationship progresses, she is way too calm for someone being courted by a world famous billionaire, who seems to be able to go anywhere in the world without being recognized as the famous public figure he is. Most girls would be speechless and quite over the moon at all that high-class attention. Ana shows a presence of mind that belies her sheltered background. She speaks volumes through her eyes, facial expressions and body language and is quite engaging and charming. Dakota has done well.

Mr. Grey, portrayed one dimensionally by Jamie Dorman, is the super-rich young exec who was adopted into his empire and high class world. He is a "walking wounded”, brooding shell of a man who was introduced into the BDSM culture, at a young age, by a female family friend, over the course of five formative years. Do we care about him? Not really. We are watching Ana as the emerging, willing participant, with full knowledge and consent, who is continually being pulled into CG's world, slowly but surely.

For a variety of reasons, the FS of G books were runaway bestsellers, so a film naturally had to follow them and yes, have created quite a stir, as most debate worthy subjects will do. It stands to reason if the subject offends, vote with your nonattendance and just don't go. This subject has been examined in art house films before and has on occasion been wrapped up in pretty paper for the mainstream. 50 plays like a hard R and it is amazing it wasn't slapped with NC-17. That said, no one under 18 should go and if you are 18-22, you’d better be mature and open. A Valentine's weekend release is somewhat disconcerting but that is big film. This is business and this money making machine was going to be harnessed.

What you think about this film will depend on how you were raised, socialized, cultural zed and allowed to explore a wide range of subjects and ideas with an open mind. Just guessing here, but I am feeling that most peoples' minds have already been made up about this one, before taking one step towards the theater.

Fans of the book should be fairly satisfied with all except possibly the portrayal of Mr. G. He will not be everyone’s’ ideal. This film will never be a masterpiece or culturally relevant, but it wasn't intended to be. While the score could have been one of the movie's best features, they chose to go the "pop" music in the background route, with scene relevant lyrics, as opposed to the heavily classical, emotive score that the author preferred. This was a BIG mistake. But the score keeps with the more lighthearted banter we see playing out on screen. Makes it all less sinister. The director has chosen to really lighten the overall mood of the picture, through some campy humor and more playful exchanges between the actors, who yes, sorry to say, do lack some badly needed chemistry. We should worry about the future of Darker and Freed with these two actors, who reportedly loathe each other off screen, if you believe the hype. As a result, CG does not come across as a real monster. The key scenes are not as horrific as they could be (no blood or scars), and Ana is really way more intelligent than the public gives her credit for. She is more mature than she initially lets on, fully capable of informed consent, calling some of her own shots, and shaping the ‘sub’ contract into one she can live with. The BDM aspects are played fairly low kept and rather safe compared with the world's actually reality. 50 is an "eye of the beholder" film. Take is seriously or not. Critics are not going to find much love for it but the fans of the books will vote for this one. Stripped down, this is the basic premise of the series for so many films, just dressed in leather. CG is wounded, troubled, confused man-child with a great high rise apartment, cool cars and a killer wardrobe, eventually being saved from his twisted past by a pretty, younger but wiser female who will show him what really love should be about. (Eventually on down the road in the future). Granted if you strip all that away and make him poor? This story changes completely. Hold tight. The ending to this one will leave you hanging!
(Review by Cheryl Wurtz)



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Thursday, February 12, 2015

Kingsman: The Secret Service



In director's Matthew Vaughn's new feature based on a the acclaimed comic book The Secret Service by Dave Gibbons and Mark Millar, the film explores the adventures of a secret secret agency of agents who are nattily dressed. Vaughn (Kick-Ass, X-Men: First Class, Snatch) who wrote the screenplay with Jane Goldman created an entertaining, high action, uber violent yet comedic world through the eyes of the hero recruit and his mentor. If nothing else, hopefully this film will inspire men to enjoy and dress in tailored suits, plus have impeccable manners.

Harry Hart (Colin Firth) also known as Galahad was on a mission where one of his men lost his life while saving the team. Harry personally visits the mans' family giving them a medal of honor from the Kingsman with a number etched on the back if they ever needed help to call and deliver a coded message. Some seventeen years later, the son of the hero, Eggsy (Taron Egerton) who is now in his early 20's gets in trouble for joyriding in a stolen car and he calls the number. Harry gets him released and offers him an opportunity to help save the world.

Harry's boss, Arthur, (Michael Caine) doesn't think that Eggsy should be considered to train as he's not the right type of class that is expected of their organization. Yet, Eggsy is thrown in with the other well heeled snobby lot where he of course excels by his street smarts and his unfailing tenacity. Their instructor Merlin (Mark Strong) puts them some crazy exercises to weed out the candidates for the one opening that was made available after they lost Lancelot. All the agents have names from King Arthur's court as the Kingsmen are considered the Knights of the Roundtable. They have tons of tech and toys to back up their operations like poison pens, lighter grenades, knives in shoes, typical Bond type of tools.

Meanwhile the Kingsmen are investigating technological tycoon Richmond Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson with a lisp) who is giving away free phone SIM cards all around the world. He also may be involved in the disappearance of VIPs, including a Swedish princess. When Harry questions Professor Arnold (Mark Hamill), a mysterious implanted chip in his head explodes killing the professor and injuring Harry. When he recovers he finds Valentine doing an experiment on an American Midwest church where all hell breaks loose, including Harry. Whatever it was was instigated by the SIM card. It's up to the Kingsman to track down Valentine and stop him.

There is a ton of action in the film with some crazy set ups with Valentine's main hench woman, Gazelle (Sofia Boutella) who sports weaponized prosthetic legs. What she does with those legs are pretty outrageous. But you have to remember this comes from a comic book, so the violence has to be considerably graphic. Lots of laughs when various celebrities and politicians heads blow up in a colorful rainbow of fireworks and classical music. Firth is great as Galahad training Eggsy the importance of a well tailored suit. Something that should be encouraged in today's young men wearing pants below their butts.
(Review by reesa)



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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

It Came From Dallas 9 — The Show with 9 Lives




Dallas Producers Association’s fund-raiser:
It Came From Dallas 9 — The Show with 9 Lives
returns Thursday, Feb 19 at Alamo Drafthouse


After a year’s hiatus, the Dallas Producers Association’s premier fund-raising and showcase event, “It Came From Dallas,” returns with the promise of a fun-filled and exciting evening of entertainment and nostalgia. http://itcamefromdallas.com/


“It Came From Dallas 9 – The Show with 9 Lives” is the Dallas Producers Association’s ninth celebration of Texas filmmaking and filmmakers. The Presenting Sponsor is Replicopy (www.replicopy.com) and the show will roll on Thursday, February 19, 2015 at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, 100 South Central Expressway at Beltline Rd in Richardson.


Fundraiser

The event is free to the public – although voluntary donations are suggested at the door. Revenue derived from the show allows the Association to continue its important work in promoting the work of the industry along with supporting various related programs in the community, both local and statewide. This is inclusive of the Texas Moving Image Incentive Program bringing production jobs to the Dallas/Ft. Worth area and the State of Texas, as a whole.


Program details

Included in the program’s segments will be interviews with a variety of local filmmaking professionals and celebrities introducing clips from films made in DFW and across Texas throughout the years. There will also be interesting anecdotes along with several “behind-the-scenes” stories about their experiences working on films, television, commercials, radio, documentary and corporate films.

Film historian Gordon K. Smith will be back with “Gordon’s Vault”, an always-impressive collection of fun trailers and clips from cult classic and lesser-known films made in the Dallas area or around the state of Texas.


Music in Media

Bob Dauber, chairperson and executive producer of the show adds, “This year, we have a brand new category segment – music that came from Dallas, presented in feature films, television programs and commercials, documentaries and radio spots.” An often, overlooked fact is that Dallas was at one point in the top three markets in the country in terms of music production, particularly, the jingle business. For those who attend, you will recognize a lot of the musical selections, as they were parts of your everyday lives, if you’ve lived here for a while. Others may not be so readily identifiable to you, but they are, nonetheless, proud pieces of work that have come out of the industry.


DPA’s Film Pioneer Award

As is another highlight of the It Came From Dallas show will be the awarding of the prestigious Dallas Producers Association Film Pioneer Award. This time around, two extraordinary Texas filmmakers, Don Stokes and Dennis Bishop will be honored with the award. http://dallasproducers.org/

Event Details:

It Came From Dallas 9 – The Show With 9 Lives
Alamo Drafthouse
Richardson Heights Village
100 South Central Expressway
Richardson, TX 75080

Thursday, February 19, 2015
7:30 PM (doors open at 6:30 PM)
Suggested Donation: $10
Cash Bar & Food For Purchase

Plan on early arrival to assure a seat.

Facebook event link:

https://www.facebook.com/events/773346089410197/

The evening will be topped off with a raffle drawing for a spectacular assortment of prizes for goods and services.

About the Dallas Producers Association
The Dallas Producers Association (dallasproducers.org) was founded in 1978 and services the needs of independent producers, facility providers, equipment rental companies, talent, writers and other producer service providers. Its constant purpose is to promote the welfare of the total DFW film and video community while exchanging and providing a wide range of ideas and informat.




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Monday, February 9, 2015

14th Annual 24-Hour Video Race




14th Annual 24-Hour Video Race
Kicks Off March 28, 2015
Angelika Film Center at Mockingbird Station in Dallas



The 14th Annual 24-Hour Video Race, presented by The Video Association of Dallas, will commence at the Angelika Film Center, 5321 E. Mockingbird Land in Mockingbird Station, Dallas, at 11:59 pm Friday, March 27 with the race taking place all of Saturday March 28. It will end 24 hours later at 11:59 pm. Information, early registration and rules are all at http://www.24hourvideorace.com/ or email info@videofest.org.

“We moved the 24-Hour Video Race up to March this year so students who are participating more and more each year would have more time to do the Race before finals hit,” said Bart Weiss, artistic director of the Video Association of Dallas.

“And to keep things interesting, we’ve added some new twists this year. We’ll add a new element to the list of ‘Must Includes,’ a character. The character aspect will be like a bartender or a ball deflator,” Weiss continued. “We have also reconfigured our team structure to so that large teams are not penalized. It should be a fun race. Let the fun begin in March by signing up now.”


About the Race
Dallas film and video makers of all levels of experience are invited to participate in the race, both creatively and literally. Teams that do not make it to the finish line at midnight will not be included in the judging.

All teams will be assigned five critical elements that will be revealed Friday, March 27 at 11 pm at Angelika right before the official kick off to the Race. Those five critical elements are:
· a theme
· a prop
· a location
· a line of dialogue
· a character

Anyone with a camera and the willingness to race can participate. Past teams have included elementary school students to professional filmmakers. Student teams compete against other student teams and adult teams are categorized by team size rather than skill level.



24-Hour Video Race’s five categories:

Super 8 Division (10th grade and under): $75/team

Team captains must be 18 years of age or older, or adult mentor must register and supervise team. Team captain is responsible for providing VAD with written evidence that each participant under 18 has obtained the prior written consent of a parent or legal guardian to participate in the 24-Hour Video Race. Check website for appropriate forms.

16 MM Division (11th and 12th grade): $75/team
Team captains must be 18 years of age or older, or adult mentor must register and supervise team. Team captain is responsible for providing VAD with written evidence that each participant under 18 has obtained the prior written consent of a parent or legal guardian to participate in the 24-Hour Video Race. Check website for appropriate forms.

Animal House Division (College): $50/team

One Person Orchestra Division: 1 member: $50

Old-Enough-to-Know-Better Division: $100/2+ members

Over 21; out of college



Screenings
The screenings of the work of all the entrants will be Tuesday, March 31 and Wednesday, April 1 (no fooling!). Finalists will screen Thursday, April 2. If more than 60 teams sign up, finals will be moved to the following Monday. All screenings will take place at the Angelika Film Center – Dallas.

The winning videos will be shown on the website, and on You+Media Dallas site and will be eligible to screen on KERA –TV Channel 13’s program “Frame of Mind.”

Team members should bring Race badges for admission to the screenings. (This includes teams who did not finish the Race.) Members of the general public can also attend. Admission is $6 for adults, $4 students with 12 and under getting in free. The screening schedule will be posted Monday, March 30.




Sponsored by
Alford Media
Dallas Film Commission
KERA
Selig Polyscope Company
Sell.com
Texas Commission on the Art


ABOUT VIDEO ASSOCIATION of DALLAS:
The mission of the Video Association of Dallas, a 501(c)(3), is to promote an understanding of video as a creative medium and cultural force in our society, and to support and advance the work of Texas artists working in video and the electronic arts. VAD serves its mission through exhibition, education, information, service and advocacy. Video Association of Dallas presents the 24-Hour Video Race and other programs throughout the year.

For press information, please contact Kelly J Kitchens Media Relations/Entertainment Publicity, 972-437-1845.






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Sunday, February 8, 2015

Movies Scheduled 2/8-2/14

I don't know about y'all but I really want to see Fifty Shades of Grey. Well it on a work night for me so I guess I will be paying to see it!

Hope you got to go to the Dallas Comic Con either yesterday or today. Lots of stars to get autographs from.

Sorry if I get the times wrong, please go by the time on your pass if it changes they will send you a email out. I don't get many passes so I don't know what times the movies are.

If you have any questions please email me at damitdaina@hotmail.com.


Sunday Feb. 8th


Monday Feb. 9th


Tuesday Feb. 10th

The Duff 7:30 p.m. SMG Royal
Kingsman Secret Service 7:00 p.m. Angelika Dallas
McFarland USA 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas

Wednesday Feb. 11th

McFarland USA 7:30 p.m. AMC Grapevine
The Duff 7:30 p.m. Cinemark West
The Duff 7:30 p.m. Cinemark Grapevine
Fifty Shades of Grey 7:30 p.m. SMG Royal
Fifty Shades of Grey 7:30 p.m. TBA


Thursday Feb. 12th

McFarland USA 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
Focus 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas
Bien Dia Ramon 7:30 pm. AMC Valley View

Friday Feb. 13th



Saturday Feb. 14th



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Sunday, February 1, 2015

Movies scheduled 2/1-2/7

Another week of not many movies so I hope you can get to see the movie you want!!

I don't hand out passes we just give you the links to go sign up for passes or tell you what contests are out there. So make sure to go to the links. It really is super easy!!

If you don't have anything to do next weekend there is always Fan Days and you can meet several different actors as well!! I know we all like meeting them. You can find all the info on this at DallasComicCon.com

If you have any questions please email me at damitdaina@hotmail.com

Sunday Feb. 1st


Monday Feb. 2nd


Kinky Boots 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas


Tuesday Feb. 3rd

Jupiter Ascending 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark


Wednesday Feb. 4th

The Duff 7:30 p.m. SMG Spring Valley
The Seventh Son 7:30 p.m. TBA
Jupiter Ascending 7:30 p.m. AMC Mesquite


Thursday Feb. 5th

Kingsman Secret Service 7:30 p.m. Alamo Drafthouse


Thursday Feb. 6th


Friday Feb. 7th


Saturday Feb 8th



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