I have been working as a film journalist since 2010, dividing the first four years between radio broadcasting and entertainment writing in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. In 2014, I entered Fresh Fiction (FreshFiction.tv) as the features editor. The following year, I stepped into the film critic position at the Denton Record-Chronicle, a daily North Texas print publication. My time is dedicated to writing theatrical film reviews, at-home entertainment columns, and conducting interviews with on-screen talent and filmmakers, as well as hosting a podcast devoted to genre filmmaking (called My Bloody Podcast). I've been married for seven happy years, and I have one son who is all about dinosaurs just like his dad.
Austin, Texas – February 10, 2015 – The South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Conference and Festival revealed the highly anticipated features in the Midnighters section, as well as the complete short film lineup, which will debut at this year’s Festival from March 13 – 21, 2015 in Austin, Texas. For more information, visit sxsw.com/film.
Entering its 22nd year, the SXSW Midnighters section is always a favorite with SXSW audiences who relish in the weird, electrifying and sometimes, downright terrifying. Featuring 11 genre films, including nine World Premieres, 2015’s Midnighter slate includes thrillers, sci-fi and dark comedies from a mix of new and veteran filmmakers. These 11 Midnighters are included in the 145 total features screening at SXSW Film 2015.
106 short films were selected from a record 4,935 short film submissions, an overall increase of 16% from 2014. A comprehensive list of the Short Film Program is detailed below, all of which will screen as part of 10 curated shorts programs. For more information on Midnighters, shorts and the rest of the announced SXSW Film lineup, visit: sxsw.com/film/screenings/2015-lineup.
“Creepy, clever, engrossing, and frightening are just a few words that come to mind when I think about this year’s SXSW Midnighters lineup,” said SXSW Producer & Senior Programmer Jarod Neece. “These nine World Premieres and two Festival Favorites are helmed by five, first-time filmmakers and several SXSW alumni. We will be screening four films a night at midnight during all nine days of SXSW, and we can’t wait to unleash them on the SXSW audiences!”
“When programming, I’m looking for short films that demand my attention, engage me in a new way and get me excited about sharing them with our audience,” explains Claudette Godfrey, Shorts Programmer & Operations Manager for SXSW Film. “The 2015 SXSW Short Film Program showcases a vast range of brilliant talent who utilize the short form with impressive skill to explore new stories and perspectives.”
The films in the Short Film Program are eligible for Jury Awards within their respective screening categories, announced during the SXSW Film Awards on Tuesday, March 17 at 8pm at the Paramount Theatre. Other awards announced will include Narrative Feature Competition and Documentary Feature Competition, Design Awards, and Special Award winners. All feature
film categories, except Special Events, will be eligible for category specific Audience Awards, announced via sxsw.com on Saturday, March 21. SXSW is proud to be an official qualifying festival for the Academy Awards® Short Film competition. Winners of our Best Animated, Best Narrative and Best Documentary Short Film categories become eligible for Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences awards (Oscars). Any British Short Film or British Short Animation that screens at SXSW is eligible for BAFTA nomination.
The SXSW Film Festival kicks off on Friday, March 13, 2015 with the world premiere of BRAND: A Second Coming. In addition to nine full days of film screenings, SXSW Film Conference (March 13 – 17) will feature over 250 sessions covering a wide range of informative topics, including Keynotes with previously announced Golden Globe nominee Ava DuVernay, Mark Duplass and RZA. For more information on Conference sessions, Conversations, Meet the Insiders, Meet Ups, Mentors, Panels and Workshops, go to sxsw.com/film.
Joining the previously announced features, the additions to the 2015 SXSW lineup are:
Scary, funny, sexy, controversial – provocative after-dark features for night owls and the terminally curious.
The Corpse of Anna Fritz (Spain)
Director: Hèctor Hernández Vicens, Screenwriters: Hèctor Hernándes Vicens, Isaac P. Creus
Anna Fritz, a famous and beautiful actress, has died recently. Three young men sneak into the morgue to see her naked. Fascinated by her beauty, they decide to become the last people to have sex with her. Cast: Alba Ribas, Cristian Valencia, Bernat Saumell, Albert Carbó. (World Premiere)
Deathgasm (New Zealand)
Director/Screenwriter: Jason Lei Howden
New kid in town Brodie and bad-boy Zakk quickly bond over their mutual admiration of heavy metal. But when these two metal thrashing losers unwittingly summon malevolent forces, their dreams of stardom may just have to be put on hold. Cast: Milo Cawthorne, James Blake, Kimberley Crossman, Stephen Ure. (World Premiere)
Director: Alistair Legrand, Screenwriters: Alistair Legrand, Luke Harvis
When a single mother and her two young children are tormented by an increasingly strange and intense presence, she turns to her science teacher boyfriend to help take on the violent forces that paranormal experts are too frightening to face. Cast: Ali Larter, Arjun Gupta, Max Rose, Merrin Dungey, Chloe Perrin, Kurt Carley, Patrick Fischler, Wilmer Calderon, Tom Wright, Laura Margolis. (World Premiere)
Director: Patrick Kennelly, Screenwriters: Sigrid Gilmer, Patrick Kennelly
Obsessed with her sexy roommate, Jill violently imprisons Jennifer in their apartment in a twisted attempt to bring them closer together. Cast: Bethany Orr, Mary Loveless, Wes McGee, Sheresade Poblet, Jill Jacobson, Dana L. Wilson, Kristin Minter, Robert Maffia, Jules Bruff, Juan Riedinger. (World Premiere)
Director: Adam Mason, Screenwriters: Adam Mason, Simon Boyes
Returning from vacation, the Miller family find their home has been broken into. After cleaning up the mess they continue with their lives, shaking off the feeling of being violated. But little do they know the nightmare has just begun. Cast: Jeremy Sisto, Kate Ashfield, Ty Simpkins, Ryan Simpkins, Amy Smart, Ross Partridge, Vince Ventresca, Bruno Acalinas, Ethan Harris-Riggs, Jamie Lee. (World Premiere)
He Never Died
Director/Screenwriter: Jason Krawczyk
Jack is a man battling his eternal struggle with cannibalism. There are very few reasons to live when you can’t die. Cast: Henry Rollins, Steven Ogg, Kate Greenhouse, BooBoo Stewart, Jordan Todosey. (World Premiere)
Director: Karyn Kusama, Screenwriters: Phil Hay, Matt Manfredi
A reunion of old friends turns into a nightmare when one guest, a haunted man whose ex-wife is among the hosts, begins to fear that the night is part of a terrifying agenda.Cast: Logan Marshall-Green, Tammy Blanchard, Michiel Huisman, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Lindsay Burdge, John Carroll Lynch, Mike Doyle, Michelle Krusiec, Karl Yune, Jordi Vilasuso. (World Premiere)
Director: Rodney Ascher
The Nightmare is an original horror documentary from the Oscar winning producer of Undefeated, the producer of Jiro Dreams of Sushi, and the producer of The Pact and is directed by Rodney Ascher, the acclaimed director of the Room 237.
Director/Screenwriter: Mickey Keating
A family intervention goes horrifically awry within the snowy confines of an isolated lake house. Cast: Lauren Ashley Carter, Dean Cates, Brian Morvant, Larry Fessenden, John Weselcouch. (World Premiere)
Turbo Kid (Canada/New Zealand)
Director/Screenwriter: RKSS Collective
In a post-apocalyptic future, The Kid, a young solitary scavenger obsessed with comic books must face his fears and become a hero when he meets a mysterious girl named APPLE. Cast: Michael Ironside, Munro Chambers, Laurence Leboeuf, Edwin Wright, Aaron Jeffrey.
We Are Still Here
Director/Screenwriter: Ted Geoghegan
In the cold, winter fields of New England, there sits a house that wakes up every 30 years and demands a sacrifice. Cast: Barbara Crampton, Andrew Sensenig, Larry Fesseden, Lisa Marie, Monte Markham. (World Premiere)
Director: Steve Carell, Screenwriters: Steve Carell, Nancy Carell
From the minds of Steve & Nancy Carell comes the new TBS comedy Angie Tribeca, a wildly satirical take on police procedurals starring Rashida Jones, Hayes MacArthur, Jere Burns, Deon Cole and Andree Vermeulen. Cast: Rashida Jones, Hayes MacArthur, Deon Cole, Andree Vermeulen, Jere Burns. (World Premiere)
Director: Larry Charles
Pilot Written by Ben Wexler, Matt Nix, Larry Charles, Billy Crystal
Episode Two Written by Ben Wexler
In FX’s The Comedians, Billy Crystal plays a comedy legend who is reluctantly paired with Josh Gad, an edgier up-and-coming star, in an unfiltered, behind-the-scenes look at a fictional late night sketch comedy show where egos and generations collide. Cast: Billy Crystal, Josh Gad. (World Premiere)
Director: Rob Thomas, Screenwriters: Rob Thomas, Diane Ruggiero-Wright
From Rob Thomas and based on the comic book, the CW Network’s iZOMBIE centers on Olivia “Liv” Moore, a bright young woman who’s also a newly turned zombie. She clings to her humanity by working in the city morgue and helping the police investigate unsolved murders. Cast: Rose McIver, Malcolm Goodwin, Rahul Kohli, Robert Buckley, David Anders. (World Premiere)
Director: Sam Esmail
Mr. Robot is a psychological thriller about a young programmer who works as a cyber-security engineer by day and a vigilante hacker by night. The USA Network series stars Rami Malek (24) and Christian Slater (Adderall Diaries). Cast: Rami Malek, Christian Slater, Portia Doubleday, Carly Chaikin. (World Premiere)
Director: Peter O’Fallon, Screenwriters: Marti Noxon, Sarah Gertrude Shapiro
From Co-Creators Marti Noxon (Mad Men) and Sarah Gertrude Shapiro (Sequin Raze), Lifetime’s highly-anticipated scripted series UnREAL is a provocative drama that gives a fictitious behind-the-scenes glimpse into the chaos surrounding the production of a dating competition program. Cast: Shiri Appleby, Constance Zimmer, Craig Bierko, Freddie Stroma. (World Premiere)
Director: Alexander Dunn, Screenwriters: Alexander Dunn, Luke Bainbridge
The heart of the beat that changed music. (World Premiere)
All Things Must Pass
Director: Colin Hanks, Screenwriter: Steven Leckart
All Things Must Pass is a feature documentary that explores the rise and fall of Tower Records, and the legacy forged by its rebellious founder, Russ Solomon. (World Premiere)
THE DAMNED: Don’t You Wish That We Were Dead
Director: Wes Orshoski
From Lemmy filmmaker Wes Orshoski comes the story of the long-ignored pioneers of punk, The Damned. (World Premiere)
Director: Brendan Toller
Danny Says is a documentary unveiling the amazing journey of Danny Fields. Fields has played a pivotal role in music and culture with seminal acts including: the Doors, the Velvet Underground, the Stooges, MC5, Nico, the Ramones and beyond. (World Premiere)
Directors: Joaquim Castro, Eduardo Nazarian, Screenwriter: Di Moretti
Dominguinhos reveals this genius of Brazilian music, creator of a deeply authentic, universal and contemporary work. The film values the sensory cinematic experience, a journey driven by Dominguinhos himself. (U.S. Premiere)
The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson (UK)
Director/Screenwriter: Julien Temple
The most extraordinary rock ‘n’ roll story of recent times. A legendary musician diagnosed with incurable cancer who managed to defy his death sentence. (World Premiere)
Director: Christian Keller, Screenwriter: Sabina Berman
A bold and compelling tale of ambition, betrayal and redemption, Gloria, based on a true story, chronicles the life of international pop star Gloria Trevi, the “Mexican Madonna.” Cast: Sofía Espinosa, Marco Pérez, Tatiana Del Real, Ximena Romo. (U.S. Premiere)
Hot Sugar’s Cold World
Director: Adam Bhala Lough
After a very public break-up with his internet-famous girlfriend, Nick Koenig (aka Hot Sugar) – a brilliant young musician – takes a magical journey around the world to find new sounds for his album, and find himself. (World Premiere)
Directors: Paul Marchand, Stephen Kijak, Screenwriters: Paul Marchand, Robert Trujillo
JACO tells the story of Jaco Pastorius, a self-taught, larger-than-life musician who changed the course of modern music. Never-before-seen archive unveils the story of Jaco’s life, his music, his demise, and the lasting victory of artistic genius. (World Premiere)
The Jones Family Will Make a Way
Director: Alan Berg, Screenwriters: Alan Berg, Lauren Sanders, Jason Wehling
A rural, Pentecostal preacher and a jaded rock critic form an unlikely alliance that pushes them both in unexpected ways. (World Premiere)
Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck
Director/Screenwriter: Brett Morgen
Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck is a raw and visceral journey through Kurt Cobain’s life and his career with Nirvana through the lens of his home movies, recordings, artwork, photography, and journals.
Directors: Brad Allgood, Graham Townsley
Landfill Harmonic follows the Recycled Orchestra, a youth group that plays instruments made entirely from trash. When their story goes viral, they are catapulted into the world spotlight. However, a recent event could present their biggest challenge. (World Premiere)
Made in Japan (USA/Japan)
Director/Screenwriter: Josh Bishop
Made in Japan is the remarkable story of Tomi Fujiyama, the world’s ﬁrst Japanese country music superstar. It is a funny yet poignant multi-cultural journey through music, marriage, and the impact of the corporate world on the dreams of one woman. (World Premiere)
Director: Jessica Edwards
Her family group, the Staple Singers, inspired millions and helped propel the civil rights movement with their music. After 60 years of performing, legendary singer Mavis Staples’ message of love and equality is needed now more than ever. (World Premiere)
A Poem Is A Naked Person
Director: Les Blank
A time capsule of Les Blank’s take on Oklahoma in 1974 about Leon Russell and his band, with Willie Nelson, George Jones, and some amazing eccentric characters. At least two major critics have declared it the best film ever made on Rock and Roll. (World Premiere)
Sir Doug and the Genuine Texas Cosmic Groove
Director: Joe Nick Patoski, Screenwriters: Joe Nick Patoski, Jason Wehling
Wild hippie cowboy musician with too much music inside, takes his talent from San Antonio to San Francisco to Austin and the world. (World Premiere)
Theory of Obscurity: a film about The Residents
Director/Screenwriter: Don Hardy
Theory of Obscurity tells the story of the renegade sound and video collective The Residents. A story that spans over 40 years and is clouded in mystery. Many details surrounding the group are secret, including the identities of its members. (World Premiere)
They Will Have To Kill Us First (UK)
Director: Johanna Schwartz, Screenwriters: Johanna Schwartz, Andy Morgan
Islamic extremists have banned music in Mali, but its world-class musicians won’t give up without a fight. From conflict, to exile, to homecoming, this film follows the story of Mali’s musicians as they fight for their right to sing. (World Premiere)
We Like It Like That
Director: Mathew Ramirez Warren
We Like It Like That tells the story of Latin boogaloo, a colorful expression of 1960s New York City Latino soul. From its origins to its recent resurgence, it’s the story of a sound that redefined a generation and was too funky to keep down. (World Premiere)
Y/OUR MUSIC (Thailand/UK)
Directors: David Reeve, Waraluck Hiransrettawat Every
The sounds of Thailand from ricefield to leftfield. (North American Premiere)
15 Corners of the World (Poland)
Director/Screenwriter: Zuzanna Solakiewicz
Imagine the sound that can be touched and seen by each of us. You can see unknown corners of the world. Just let your eyes follow your ears. (U.S. Premiere)
The Avian Kind (South Korea)
Director/Screenwriter: Shin Yeon-Shick
A novelist’s search for his wife, who disappeared from view 15 years ago. Cast: KIM Jeong-Suk, Soy KIM, JUNG Han-Bi. (North American Premiere)
The Ceremony (Sweden)
Director/Screenwriter: Lina Mannheimer
France’s most famous dominatrix, two close friends and two lovers share their innermost thoughts about love, friendship, dominance and submission – as we meet the unusual and fascinating author Catherine Robbe-Grillet and her inner circle. (North American Premiere)
Free Entry (Hungary)
Director/Screenwriter: Yvonne Kerékgyártó
Free Entry is an adventurous journey to adulthood as two 16-year-old girls risk their first steps towards independence, in different ways at the biggest international summer festival of Hungary. Cast: Luca Pusztai, Ágnes Barta, Péter Sándor, Róbert Kardos, Ádám Kovács, Barnabás Janka, Tibor Szolár, Anna Nemes, Katica Nagy. (North American Premiere)
Good Things Await (Denmark)
Director: Phie Ambo, Screenwriters: Phie Ambo, Maggie Olkuska
Niels is one of the last idealistic farmers in the agricultural country of Denmark. But Niels’ ways of farming in accordance with the planets and the primal instincts of the animals are not too popular with the authorities. (U.S. Premiere)
Director: Abner Benaim
Invasion documents the US military siege of Panama that ousted dictator Noriega 25 years ago while wreaking untold collateral damage. It sets out to shatter the willful amnesia of a country all too eager to bury its troubled past.
Director/Screenwriter: Anna Sofie Hartmann
A small town on the outskirts of Denmark. Two women – a teenage girl and her schoolteacher – build a strange connection that transforms both of them. A subtle, beautiful, personal film on the state of youth and the uncertainty of being. Cast: Annika Nuka Mathiassen, Sofía Nolsøe. (North American Premiere)
Monte Adentro (Colombia/Argentina)
Director/Screenwriter: Nicolás Macario Alonso
Monte Adentro explores the universe of one of the last muleteer families in Colombia and follows the lives and mule train of two brothers as they get together for an epic mule driving journey to the highest peaks of the Andes. (North American Premiere)
Director: Ross Katz, Screenwriters: Jeff Cox, Elizabeth Flahive
Out of a job after a disastrous product launch, a big-city yuppie retreats to his suburban childhood home, in this heart-warming and hilarious film about crashing hard, coming home and waking up.Cast: Nick Kroll, Rose Byrne, Bobby Cannavale, Joel McHale. (U.S. Premiere)
Director: Daniel Junge, Screenwriters: Daniel Junge, Davis Coombe
Millions know the man; few know his story. Academy Award-winning director Daniel Junge and producer Johnny Knoxville take a candid look at American daredevil Evel Knievel, while reflecting on our voracious public appetite for heroes and spectacle. *SXsports Screening
Best of Enemies
Directors: Morgan Neville, Robert Gordon
Best of Enemies is a behind-the-scenes account of the explosive 1968 televised debates between the liberal Gore Vidal and the conservative William F. Buckley Jr., and their rancorous disagreements about politics, God, and sex.
City of Gold
Director: Laura Gabbert
City of Gold is a documentary portrait that takes us into Jonathan Gold’s universe to tell the improbable story of a revolution inspired by the pen, but driven by the palate.
Director: Rick Alverson, Screenwriters: Rick Alverson, Gregg Turkington
En route to meet his estranged daughter and attempt to revive his dwindling career, a broken, aging comedian plays a string of dead-end shows in the Mojave desert. Cast: Gregg Turkington, John C. Reilly, Tye Sheridan
Directors: Bryan Carberry, Clay Tweel
Finders Keepers follows recovering addict and amputee John Wood in his stranger-than-fiction battle to reclaim his mummified leg from Southern entrepreneur Shannon Whisnant, who found it in a grill he bought at an auction.
Heaven Knows What
Directors: Joshua Safdie, Benny Safdie
The latest from acclaimed sibling directors Josh and Benny Safdie (Daddy Longlegs) blends fiction, formalism and raw documentary as it follows a young heroin addict who finds mad love in the streets of New York.
The Last Man on the Moon (UK)
Director: Mark Craig
One man’s part in mankind’s greatest adventure… (North American Premiere)
The Look of Silence (Denmark/Indonesia/Norway/Finland/UK)
Director: Joshua Oppenheimer
Director Joshua Oppenheimer’s follow-up to the earth-shattering, Academy Award® nominated The Act of Killing.
Director/Screenwriter: Ryan Gosling
A family tries to hold on to their home in the ruins of a disappearing city. Cast: Christina Hendricks, Iain De Caestecker, Saoirse Ronan, Matt Smith, Reda Kateb, Barbara Stele, Eva Mendes, Ben Mendelsohn. (U.S. Premiere)
Director/Screenwriter: Hal Hartley
Ned Rifle is the third and final chapter of Hal Hartley’s tragicomic epic begun with Henry Fool (1998) and continued with Fay Grim (2007). In this swiftly paced and expansive conclusion, Henry and Fay’s son, Ned, sets out to find and kill his father. Cast: Liam Aiken, Martin Donovan, Aubrey Plaza, Parker Posey, Thomas Jay Ryan, James Urbaniak, Robert John Burke, Bill Sage, Karen Sillas (U.S. Premiere)
Director/Screenwriter: Patrick Brice
Two families meet at the park and set up a playdate that has unexpected outcomes for all. Cast: Adam Scott, Jason Schwartzman, Taylor Schilling, Judith Godrèche.
Director/Screenwriter: Andrew Bujalski
A take on self improvement culture in America – with all it’s promise and absurdity – stuffed into a peculiar romantic comedy. Cast: Guy Pearce, Cobie Smulders, Kevin Corrigan, Giovanni Ribisi, Anthony Michael Hall, Brooklyn Decker, Constance Zimmer. *SXsports Screening
Salt of the Earth (France)
Directors: Wim Wenders, Juliano Riberio Salgado, Screenwriters: Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, Wim Wenders
For the last 40 years, photographer Sebastião Salgado has been travelling through the continents, in the footsteps of an ever-changing humanity. He is now embarking on the discovery of pristine territories, which is a tribute to the planet’s beauty.
Director: Kris Swanberg, Screenwriters: Kris Swanberg, Megan Mercier
An inner-city high school teacher discovers she is pregnant at the same time as one of her most promising students and the two develop an unlikely friendship while struggling to navigate their unexpected pregnancies. Cast: Cobie Smulders, Anders Holm, Gail Bean, Elizabeth McGovern.
The Visit (Denmark/Austria/Ireland/Finland/Norway)
Director/Screenwriter: Michael Madsen
This film documents an event that has never taken place – man’s first encounter with intelligent life from space.
Welcome to Leith
Directors: Michael Beach Nichols, Christopher K. Walker
A white supremacist attempts to take over a small town in North Dakota.
Directors: Bill Ross, Turner Ross
For generations, all that distinguished Eagle Pass, Texas, from Piedras Negras, Mexico, was the Rio Grande. But when darkness descends upon these harmonious border towns, a cowboy and lawman face a new reality that threatens their way of life.
7 Days In Hell
Director: Jake Szymanski, Screenwriter: Murray Miller
A fictional documentary-style expose on the rivalry between two tennis stars who battled it out in a 1999 match that lasted seven days. Cast: Andy Samberg, Kit Harrington, Michael Sheen, Will Forte, Lena Dunham, Fred Armisen, Mary Steenburgen, Karen Gillan, John McEnroe, Serena Williams. (World Premiere) *SXsports Screening
Doug Benson & Master Pancake interrupt Leprechaun 3 (1995)
Director: Brian Trenchard-Smith
“The directness with which this movie went to video is apparent in nearly every single element.” Tim Brayton, Antagony and Ecstasy. Cast: Warwick Davis, John Gatins, Lee Armstrong.
Jonathan Demme Presents Made In Texas
Directors: Louis Black, Mark Rance
The restoration of six films made in Austin in the early 1980s including David Boone’s Invasion of the Aluminum People. The program was originally curated by Jonathan Demme and presented at the Collective for Living Cinema in NYC. (World Premiere)
The Road Warrior (Australia)
Director: George Miller, Screenwriters: Terry Hayes, George Miller
In the post-apocalypse future, where humans fight over the few remaining stores of gasoline, Mad Max offers to drive a tanker through a gauntlet of psychos to safety on the coast. Special Q&A to follow with George Miller. Cast: Mel Gibson, Bruce Spence, Virginia Hey, Emil Minty, Kjell Nilsson, Max Phipps, Vernon Wells, David Slingsby, Steve J. Spears.
A Space Program
Director: Van Neistat, Screenwriters: Van Neistat, Tom Sachs
The artist Tom Sachs and his team of bricoleurs build a handmade space program and send two female astronauts to Mars. Cast: Sam Ratanarat, Mary Eannarino, Tom Sachs, Evan Murphy, Chris Beeston, Pat McCarthy, Nick Doyle, Kevin Hand, Jeff Lurie, Jared Vandeusen. (World Premiere)
Trainwreck (Work in Progress)
Director: Judd Apatow, Screenwriters: Amy Schumer
Blockbuster filmmaker Judd Apatow (The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Knocked Up, This Is 40) directs Universal Pictures’ Trainwreck, starring breakout comedic actress Amy Schumer (Inside Amy Schumer). Cast: Amy Schumer, Bill Hader, Brie Larson, Colin Quinn, Vanessa Bayer, Tilda Swinton, Lebron James, John Cena. (Debut of a Work in Progress)
Director: Sonic Acts
Vertical Cinema is a series of ten newly commissioned large-scale works by experimental filmmakers and audiovisual artists, which are presented on 35mm celluloid and projected vertically with a custom-built projector. (North American Premiere)
09:55 – 11:05, Ingrid Ekman, Bergsgatan 4B (Sweden)
Directors: Cristine Berglund, Sophie Vukovic
67-year-old Ingrid has decided to deal with cancer on her own. She retreats from the outside world and it retreats from her – apart from sporadic visits from the home care services. But then home care employee Frida knocks on her door and awakens feelings that Ingrid can’t shut out.
Director: Jeremy Hersh
Follows the relationship between a 23-year-old aspiring actress and an off-broadway star.
Director: Matthew Frost
In Aspirational, a short film for fashion magazine Vs., Frost takes aim at selfie culture with the help of Kirsten Dunst.
Director: Samuel Aaron Bennett
Naomi’s got a problem. The vodka in the hotel mini-bar may not be the answer, but it helps her escape a reality she won’t face, at least for a little while. (World Premiere)
Donald And Jess
Director: Paul Briganti
A lonely plumber fights for a customer he’s fallen for. (World Premiere)
Director: Tim Marshall
We all need something… or someone to follow.
Director: Joshua Tate
A young woman with Down Syndrome (Glee‘s Lauren Potter) grapples with intimacy, identity, and adulthood after an unplanned pregnancy with her boyfriend. (World Premiere)
Director: Leah Shore
Shot exclusively in a secret sex club in New York City, a drug-induced couple unleash upon each other an existential barrage of delusion and broken dreams. (World Premiere)
Happy with Bear (Australia)
Director: Yianni Warnock
A Singaporean exchange student struggles with her inner turmoil by vicariously living through her online persona. (World Premiere)
LERATO (USA/South Africa)
Director: Thati Peele
Happy, a short-tempered South African farm labourer, must contend his fate to get his young daughter to a prestigious piano audition on time. (World Premiere)
Myrna the Monster
Director: Ian Samuels
A heartbroken alien dreamer from the moon transitions into young adult life in Los Angeles like any other twentysomething.
Oh Lucy (Japan/USA/Singapore)
Director: Atsuko Hirayanagi
Setsuko, a 55-year-old single so-called office lady in Tokyo, is given a blonde wig and a new identity, Lucy, by her young unconventional English-language teacher. “Lucy” awakens desires in Setsuko she never knew existed.
Director: Michael Mohan
A young married couple brings two of their single friends out to Palm Springs for a long weekend. It does not go as planned.
Director: Clara Aranovich
An unlikely love story set along Kenai Lake in Alaska. (World Premiere)
Room 55 (UK)
Director: Rose Glass
Set in 1950s England, Room 55 follows the journey of Alice Lawson – strictly self-disciplined wife, mother and celebrated television cook – as she spends an unplanned night alone at the mysterious Clove Hotel…
Director: Pippa Bianco
A 15-year-old girl returns to school after someone shares an explicit video of her. (World Premiere)
Director: Marie Grahtø
Teenland is neo-kitsch fantasy about incarcerated teens so fucked up emotionally that they have developed supernatural powers – like all teenagers really. It’s time to release the teens of the world. (World Premiere)
Wait ’til the Wolves Make Nice
Director: Jessica dela Merced
Five kids turn their innocence to ashes on a hot summer day in Detroit. (World Premiere)
We’ll Find Something
Director: Casey Gooden
A couple struggles to choose a restaurant while visiting New York. (World Premiere)
What Doesn’t Kill You
Director: Darya Zhuk
After a rare diagnosis, Lily’s attempts to flee from war torn Israel are thwarted when the airport shuts down and her zany cousin forces her to party. (World Premiere)
Bob Spells Backwards
Directors: Josh Polon, Ryan Maxey
Bob has this superpower he can do most of the time. (World Premiere)
Born To Be Mild (UK)
Director: Andy Oxley
Documentary delving into the peculiar world of the Dull Men’s Club. (U.S. Premiere)
Director: Meg Smaker
One woman defies Fidel Castro’s ban on female boxing to follow her dream of Olympic glory. Boxeadora tells the story of her harrowing journey against insurmountable odds to become Cuba’s first female boxer. (World Premiere)
Calls to Okies: The Park Grubbs Story
Directors: Bradley Beesley, Ben Steinbauer
In the early 1980’s, a group of disenfranchised Oklahoma teenagers mastered the art of prank phone calls and became known as Park Grubbs. (World Premiere)
Directors: Josh Chertoff, Alfredo Alcantara
El Porvenir tells the story of Abelardo Olguin, a third-generation cockfighter struggling to hold on to his family’s way of life in the face of a growing movement to ban the sport across the Mexican states. (World Premiere)
Director: Gabe Spitzer
At 86, Joy Johnson was the oldest woman to run the 2013 New York City Marathon. This is the story of an inspiring athlete with an uncommon passion for her sport, and for life.
Director: Mishka Kornai
An ode to the universality of life and its phases, through a collection of personal stories shared by unique individuals. (World Premiere)
I Thought I Told You To Shut Up!! (Canada)
Director: Charlie Tyrell
In 1977 David Boswell created comic book anti-hero Reid Fleming, The World’s Toughest Milkman. 30 years later, the big screen Hollywood adaptation remains in limbo. Narrated by Academy Award-Winner Jonathan Demme. (World Premiere)
THE LAST MILE
Director: Ondi Timoner
61% of California inmates return to prison within 3 years. The Last Mile program at San Quentin Prison helps offenders become entrepreneurs, training them to start their own companies, despite being denied access to computers & the Internet. (World Premiere)
The Little Deputy (Canada)
Director: Trevor Anderson
Trevor tries to have a photo taken with his father.
Love Has No Age
Director: Eli Born
A love story reunion between a woman who joined a Cult called, “The Source Family”, and a legendary rock photographer. (U.S. Premiere)
Picturing Barbara Kruger
Director: Pippa Bianco
How do you make a film about the artist’s image without using it? (World Premiere)
Directors: Adam Roffman, Luke Poling
In the wilds of rural Alabama, a spear-hunter proclaims himself “world’s greatest”, erecting a museum dedicated to his bizarre obsession. An offbeat cast of lovers and acolytes remember his tactics both for killing and for leaving a legacy. (World Premiere)
Terms of Intimacy
Director: Melissa Langer
A glimpse into the emerging industry of professional cuddling and the lives of the clients that use this service. (U.S. Premiere)
Director: Christopher André Marks
Patrick Barr has a passion for golf, what he doesn’t have are fairways or golf balls. Undaunted, Patrick a.k.a. “Tiger Hood,” swings his way to self-acceptance on the streets of the Lower East Side of Manhattan. (World Premiere)
Directors: Diane Hodson, Jasmine Luoma
Weaving together the life and work of iconoclastic psychogeographer and convicted sex offender, Denis Wood, this meditative portrait unveils the inner workings of a man who unapologetically pushes boundaries both personally and professionally.
All Your Favorite Shows!
Director: Danny Madden
Anything you wanna watch in the palm of your hands! Crazy convenient. Crazy. . . (World Premiere)
Director: Matt Reynolds
A hand drawn animation documenting a parasitic reproductive cycle. (World Premiere)
Director: Julian Petschek
A banana and a hot dog bun are famous.
Half Wet (UK)
Director: Sophie Koko Gate
We are all born as wet as a banana, 75% water.
Director: James Ford Murphy
Inspired by the isolated beauty of tropical islands and the explosive allure of ocean volcanoes, LAVA is a musical love story that takes place over millions of years.
Director: Ryan Gillis
An old crop-duster discovers a mysterious crate floating in the Florida Everglades. Bringing the crate onto his airboat is just the first in a series of decisions he learns to regret.
Director: Steven Subotnick
The pig is everything. (North American Premiere)
Director: Xaver Xylophon
Julius can’t sleep. To get his head empty he decides to go on a roadtrip, but somehow he can’t manage to leave. A hand drawn film about failure, insomnia, a red motorbike, pretty bargirls, the desolateness of Berlin and waterproof socks.
Directors: Daniel Gray, Tom Brown
The point of no return cannot be crossed twice.
Director: William Reynish
whole is a film about heartache. (U.S. Premiere)
World of Tomorrow
Director: Don Hertzfeldt
A little girl is taken on a mind-bending tour of her distant future.
ANAL JUKE -anal juice- (Japan)
Director: Sawako Kabuki
A dream about my ex-boyfriend and the uneasy atmosphere of Japan after the earthquake are remixed.
Directors: Josh Baker, Jonathan Baker
Bag Man is the understated story of a 12 year old African American boy, who takes us on an introspective journey out of the city and into the remote countryside of upstate New York, with a mysterious duffle bag in hand. (World Premiere)
Director: Brian Lonano
A “CAW”tionary tale!!! (North American Premiere)
Interesting Ball (USA/UK)
A red ball bounces past a cafe and a couple folks’ houses and then goes to the beach.
Kiss Kiss Fingerbang
Director: Gillian Wallace Horvat
A nice guy discovers a darker side of his personality when his girlfriend reveals her hidden weakness. (World Premiere)
Director: Jeff Betancourt
Val and her friends play a game that allows them to communicate with the dead. The Knock Knock Game turns any doorway into a portal to the hereafter, but the girls soon learn that there are rules that should never be broken. (World Premiere)
Le Pédophile (Canada)
Director: Ara Ball
Le Pédophile tells the hard hitting story of a woman coping with a history of being sexually abused, and the violence and tenderness which helps her leave it behind. (World Premiere)
WELCOME to WILLITS: AFTER SUNDOWN
Director: Trevor Ryan
Some deals go wrong. Some deals go very wrong. (World Premiere)
Blood Orange – “You’re Not Good Enough”
Director: Gia Coppola
Boy & Bear – “Bridges” (Australia)
Director: Summer DeRoche
Chet Faker – “Gold”
Director: Hiro Murai
clipping. – “Body & Blood”
Director: Patrick Kennelly
Dent de Cuir – “She’s Bad” (France)
Directors: Dent De Cuir
DJ Snake featuring Lil’ Jon – “Turn Down for What”
Donn Bhat – “Disco Disco” (India)
Director: Aakash Bhatia
Duke Dumont – “Won’t Look Back” (UK/USA)
Director: Tim Main
Hercules and Love Affair – “I Try to Talk to You”
Director: David Wilson
Hudson and Troop – “Frameless” (Australia)
Directors: Andrew Goldsmith, Darcy Prendergast
Jack Kovacs (feat. Huxlee) – “The Empty House”
Director: Anna Zlokovic
Moody Good feat. Eryn Allen Kane – “Musicbx” (UK)
Director: Max McCabe
Mr Little Jeans – “Good Mistake”
Director: Ian & Cooper
Nils Frahm – “Re” (Hungary)
Director: Balázs Simon
Paolo Nutini – “Iron Sky” (UK)
Director: Daniel Wolfe
Saint Pepsi – “Fiona Coyne”
Director: Matt Walker
Taggart and Rosewood – “The Kink”
Directors: Brandon LaGanke, John Carlucci
Toys – “Golden Line” (France)
Director: Vladimir de Fontenay
Valentino Khan – “Make Some Noise”
Director: Tim Hendrix
+ / –
Directors: Andy Irvine, Mark Smoot
A young couple examines their relationship as they await the result of a pregnancy test. (World Premiere)
Director: Jazmin Diaz
Brothers David and Oscar Juarez have until sunset in rural Mexico to turn a profit on their father’s business, or face the consequences of his belligerence. (World Premiere)
Darknet Delivery: A Silk Road Story (USA/Germany)
Directors: Lacey Dorn, Mafalda Millies
In the era of Internet hyper-connectivity, four friends order drugs online, only to reveal how disconnected they really are.
Director: Austin Tolin
When a new piece of evidence arrives for an unsolved case, Detective Lenny Calzone decides to put in a late night at the crime lab. (World Premiere)
Director: James M. Johnston
Marcus is dealing with some serious shit. (World Premiere)
The OceanMaker (USA/Belize)
Director: Lucas Martell
After the seas have disappeared, a courageous young female pilot fights against vicious sky pirates for control of the last remaining source of water: the clouds.
Director: John Bryant
A salesman faces the most difficult and important negotiation of his life. (World Premiere)
Director: Tomas Vengris
A young girl’s contemplation of her budding sexuality takes us on a dark psychological journey about love, sex, and manipulation. (North American Premiere)
Director: Joe Nicolosi
For two star pilots on a deep space patrol mission, hostile alien races aren’t the biggest threat… boredom is. (World Premiere)
Woman of the World
Director: Allison Cook
On a visit to Los Angeles, Rachel has an encounter with a celebrity that reminds her she is right where she belongs. (World Premiere)
Art-O-Mat: The Art Machine
Director: Jose Couvillion
Art-O-Mat: The Art Machine is a short documentary exploring Clark Whittington’s original creation, the Art-O-Mat, a vending machine that sells small pieces of original art.
Director: Jonah Goldberg
A boy who has trouble with controlling his anger begins to take medication, but not everyone agrees with this choice.
Awake After Sleepless Nights
Director: Nathan Jowers
Joshua, a young student, struggles against sleep deprivation, turning to online games for relief.
Directors: Katie Dai, Rachel Davis
Dolls is the story of two girls getting ready for a party in conventional – and unconventional! – ways.
Director: Gretchen Lynch
Evelyn Parker is a short kids film about a nine year old girl who realizes she might just need math to make it big in the fashion world.
Director: Abbey Perez
During her college application process, Mira must constantly brag about herself, but she can’t think of anything good to say. In this coming-of-age story, Mira relies on help from her friends to figure out what makes her special.
Greg The Magnificent
Directors: Umar Qadeer, Nick Chaviers
Greg The Magnificent follows Greg Smith, an under-appreciated kid who is constantly picked on. A magic kit mysteriously arrives at his front door that motivates him to become “someone.”
Directors: Garrett Monk, Calvin Herbst
A short film illustrating the Kübler-Ross model, commonly known as the 5 stages of grief. The film reflects each stage through a group of friends as they struggle to overcome the loss of someone close to them.
Director: Caitlin O’Brien
Home is a dramatic science fiction short about a young girl who is faced with the frailty of life and the humanity of home.
I am not a Hero
Director: Murphy Studebaker
I am not a Hero explores the significance of knowledge, creativity, and self-expression.
It’s A Thing
Directors: Meredith Morran, Sage McCommas
A short exploration of two quirky high school students with irrational fears. They find each other and the power of love.
It’s Really Odd
Directors: Elisabetta Diorio, Joshua Leftwich
A hopelessly romantic eighth-grader finds herself about to experience what she once admired from a safe distance on a black-and-white screen.
Just Your Average Joe
Directors: Pearl Basinski, Jade Basinski
Life is a long dark tunnel and you’re the light at the end.
Director: Alexia Salingaros
KERS is a short documentary on a female graffiti artist. Braving the general public’s critical eye, she reveals her talents and takes us through the struggles she faces in her art form.
Director: Alexia Salingaros
In a fast-deteriorating world, a lonely hero must join together with an unlikely crew of misfits to uncover a secret and save their dying civilization.
Directors: Caila Pickett, Gray Deuber
A chef redefines success.
Director: Michael Morrison
Noel is a dramatic film representing the immature and irrational decision of a teen who is maltreated.
The Passion of the Mime
Director: William Hoinoski
An aging detective and his rookie partner stumble upon a unique crime scene.
Pokemon Rivals Trailer
Directors: Josh Ulmer, Branden Shoemaker
Pokemon Rivals Trailer is a live action Film based on the popular card and TV show Pokemon. It follows the characters Ash, Brock, and Gary from a different perspective than the light hearted TV show.
Professor Hancock’s Orchestra
Director: Charlie Ozburn
Professor Hancock’s Orchestra is a documentary showcasing the work of a band, led by high school senior Colin Hancock, who recreated the sound and analog recording technique of Jazz legend Buddy Bolden.
Shadows in the Woods
Director: Anthony Martino
Shadows in the Woods is a horror film following a couple on a camping trip in the woods. Things take a dark turn when the man’s sick fantasy is carried out.
Turtle: A Super 8 Short Film
Director: Cameron Fisher
In a wordless tale, a lonely boy’s heartfelt encounter with an unexpected visitor (a tortoise) develops into an unlikely friendship based on trust.