A Fall Cinematic Classic

November 3, 2013 |

“Narco Cultura” screens during The Loft’s film festival.
photo courtesy The Loft Cinema

A curious and diverse mix of films – including acclaimed titles from around the festival circuit, as well as a few undiscovered gems – plays out on The Loft Cinema’s screens Nov. 7-11 as part of the theatre’s forth annual film festival.

As in past years, the mix of film speaks to social justice, master storytelling and compelling imagery from both established cinematic voices, as well as a new generation of filmmakers. With a great line up of films over four days, there are many that are well worth the trip, and you may even find yourself having to make some hard choices on what to see.

Strong documentary features,  covering a variety of topics, are a major part of the festival this year. Narco Cultura is a breathtaking examination of the dual nature of the drug trade on contemporary Mexican life. The film examines the fascination of the drug world’s signature lifestyle, as glorified by narco corridos, and the terrifying work done by crime scene investigators in Juarez, as they try to keep up with rising tide of collateral victims. Shot beautifully, and full of jaw dropping facts, this is one film not to miss.

On a different note, the sweet and charming film Dear Mr. Watterson traces the history of one of the world’s favorite comic strips—Calvin and Hobbs. The film examines the impact of the strip, which ran for ten years from 1985–1995, on the public and other comic artists. It also examines the legacy of one unique artist who both refused to compromise on his vision, and in the process left a rich legacy unmatched by any other in the field.

Also in the documentary field is the sobering piece by Peter Nicks, The Waiting Room, which looks at an emergency room in Oakland, CA from multiple perspectives and paints a dire picture of modern health care as has never before been seen on screen.

Narrative features from around the world of note include the compelling film A Teacher, about a relationship between a high school teacher and her student; Il Fururo, about an unlikely romance between an aging film star and a would-be burglar in Italy, and the new film from director John Sayles, Go For Sisters, in which a pair of estranged friends unite to try to find one of their sons, who has gone missing in Mexico.

The film Mr. Nobody, originally completed in 2009, is finally seeing the light of day. It stars Jared Leto as the oldest human on earth as he looks back on the choices in his life, intermixed with multiple strands of reality. The film is an interesting mash up of sci-fi and drama. A Case of You is a romantic comedy with a killer cast including Evan Rachel Wood and Justin Long, with great cameos from Brendan Fraser, Peter Dinklage and Vince Vaughn. The film examines love in the modern age when over-sharing of information can lead to imagined perfect relationships.

“Mr. Nobody,” starring Jared Leto and Sarah Polley, shows at The Loft’s fim festival. Photo courtesy The Loft Cinema

But there’s more, of course. One does not go to The Loft expecting to see just normal film festival fare. The odd, unique and special are represented this year with a few signature events. First up is a screening of Willow Creek, which springs from the mind of comedian Bobcat Goldthwait, who last surprised us with the excellent and telling story God Bless America. This time he has created a found footage-style horror film about a couple’s search for Bigfoot. Goldthwait will be in person at the event.

Also look for a special screening of The Nightmare Before Christmas with special guest Pete Kozachik (brother of city councilman Steve Kozachik), who was on the effects team for the film and presents the anniversary showing of Tim Burton’s classic  tale. There will also be a screening of The Room, long thought to be the worst movie ever made, which now has a cult-like following.

For a full line up of films in this year’s fest, the schedule of screening times, and costs visit LoftCinema.com/loft-film-fest. The Loft is located at 3233 E. Speedway Blvd. Call (520) 795-7777 for showtimes, call the box office at (520) 795-0844 for more information.

Category: Arts, Film