Philadelphia Film Festival 2005

2005 Film Festival
The Philadelphia Film Festival officially kicked off yesterday, but for me it begins tonight. As with the Fringe Festival, normal life is on hold for the duration. Ten movies in ten days:

  • April 8th: Somersault (Australia): Young Heidi’s emerging sexuality leads to bad decisions and rash behavior in this brutally frank and visually arresting Australian coming-of-age tale.
  • April 8th: Land of Plenty (US): Studies the scars of 9/11 on the American psyche, following an idealistic young woman and her disillusioned uncle on a journey of revelation.
  • April 9th: Rittenhouse Square (US): An impressionistic, music-filled documentary about “the spot” where people go to meet friends, find romance, muse about life and enjoy the beauty of nature and the opposite sex.
  • April 9th: 5 x 2: Five Times Two (France): French director Francois Ozon gives us his own version of Scenes from a Marriage, packing rage into the early sequences, but then becoming gentler as his sophisticated film journeys back in time.
  • April 10th: Death of a Dynasty (US): In the spirit of This Is Spinal Tap, this music industry satire offers a witty look behind the closed doors of Damon Dash’s and Jay-Z’s hip-hop empire.
  • April 10th: Frozen (Great Britain): This haunting British film lets the viewer decide whether the tale is really a psychological thriller, a murder mystery, or a ghost story.
  • April 12th: 48 Hour Film Project (US): Thirty teams were given four random components: a character, a prop, a line of dialogue, and a genre (including horror, musical and a superhero film). They must finish the piece (under seven minutes in length) in 48 hours.
  • April 14th: Not Your Saturday Morning Cartoon: This fine group of adult titles from the most confrontational, lowbrow cartoon artists working today is guaranteed to get a rise from festival attendees.
  • April 17th: King of the Corner (US): Peter Riegert’s directorial debut, an observant, vignette-driven comedy-drama that charts the spiritual breakdown of one Leo Spivak,
  • April 17th: White Men Can’t Rap (US): Good, old-fashioned tongue-in-cheek comedy. Philly private dick KO gets his share of action, punches and sight gags galore, as he desperately searches for a missing musician from the North Philly hip-hop band Cocoa Bean Mogul.

Unfortunately, the program guide descriptions make every movie sound fabulous, and I have horrible instincts for picking out the winners. However, half the fun of the festival is not knowing what you’ll get when you walk into the theatre.

9 responses to “Philadelphia Film Festival 2005”

  1. very metal

    Not being from (phrom?) Philly, I can only offer that Somersault sounds an awful like a film remember seeing once, Rochelle, Rochelle. Wait, maybe that was television.

  2. Dave

    I will also be seeing a goodly number of films at the Festival. (Including the 10 April showing of Frozen.) I love going to see the German films. It’s always an exercise to ignore the subtitles and try to translate the dialogue. Unfortunately, my translations usually differ greatly from the actual plot. (Apparently, there’s a submarine in Das Boot!)

  3. Sarcasmo

    Hey – I’m also seeing Frozen, but on the 9th. We’ll have to compare notes.

    However, half the fun of the festival is not knowing what you’ll get when you walk into the theatre.

    I totally agree. In fact, I’m determined not to look at the descriptions of the movies I’ve gotten tickets for before I see them – as now I’ve more or less forgotten what most of them were about.

  4. Becky

    Yes, we’ll have to compare notes. Interesting that the common movie is a dark, psychological thriller.

    Normally I agree with the strategy of not reading descriptions. However, it almost backfired this year when a friend wanted to see Flower and Snake based on the title alone (it’s a Japanese S&M sexploitation flick billed as “very disturbing”).

    Dave, I’ll look for you–will Shelly (sp?) be parked outside?

  5. yoko

    I’m starting my film festival tonight as well. I take the descriptions with a grain of salt, and pick the movies that immediately catch my eye, rather than spending too much thought over them. We’ll see how my picks do this year!

  6. Dave

    Unfortunately, Shelley will not be outside. I don’t like gliding out that late. Too many undesirables walk the streets in the moonlight, I’m told.

  7. Scott

    I am generally a fairly quiet person, though in movies I talk incessantly, the voice of my voice increases exponentially.

    So fear not, fairly soon after I start talking you won’t be able to hear me with your mere human ears.

  8. sarah

    i’m going to see a film tonite and one on sunday night. woot!

  9. Chris

    How was the movie? And thanks for inviting me over — cool site. Although, had I known you were such a big baseball fan, I might not have gone on the way I did about the Red Sox.

    By the way, have you ever read “The Universal Baseball Association, Inc, J. Henry Waugh Prop.” by Coover?