Archive for the ‘Independent’ Category

  • 2013 Independent Spirit Award WINNERS

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    spirit awards 2013

     
    Tomorrow is Oscar Night. But the real party is tonight at “The Spirit Awards.” While 12 Years a Slave unsurprisingly pretty much cleaned house (earning 5 wins of its 7 nominations), it was nice to see some recognition for other, smaller films like Mud and Short Term 12.

    Mostly nothing overly surprising from this end. How bout you? Anything on the below list catching your eye? Winners are obviously in RED

    BEST FEATURE
    12 Years a Slave
    All is Lost
    Frances Ha
    Inside Llewyn Davis
    Nebraska

    BEST DIRECTOR
    Shane Carruth, Upstream Color
    J.C. Chandor, All is Lost
    Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave
    Jeff Nichols, Mud
    Alexander Payne, Nebraska

    BEST FEMALE LEAD
    Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
    Julie Delpy, Before Midnight
    Gaby Hoffman, Crystal Fairy
    Brie Larson, Short Term 12
    Shailene Woodley, The Spectacular Now

    BEST MALE LEAD
    Bruce Dern, Nebraska
    Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
    Oscar Isaac, Inside Llewyn Davis
    Michael B. Jordan, Fruitvale Station
    Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club
    Robert Redford, All Is Lost
    » Read the rest of the entry..

  • “Unnerved” Gets Trailorized

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    One of our favorite indie filmmakers around these parts we continue to pimp out is our guy, Gary King (of the award-winning How Do You Write A Joe Schermann Song and New York lately). He makes quality films seemingly year after year and touches all manner of genre each time (very Soderbergian/Almodovr-esque in that way). When a director that I like is trying to cover all the genre bases, the one I’m usually most excited about and interested in seeing what they can do with, is absolutely horror. Psychological horror, fantasy horror, splatterpunk, supernatural or something new entirely – I’m interested and want. And here we come to Unnerved.

    Consumed by grief after the bizarre death of their young son, Mallory and Frank find their marriage on the verge of collapse. Attempting to escape the supernatural events following them, they flee to a remote lake house only to discover the mysterious entity that took their child is still very much a part of their lives. Desperate to find answers, they enlist the help of a reclusive clairvoyant with a secret past. As the relentless haunting grows in power, what they discover will not be the answer they were hoping for.

    This film reteams director/screenwriter King with his longtime collaborator Mark DiConzo as Frank, and features the talented newcomer Katie Morrison in the role of Mallory with Elena Sanz rounding out the lead cast as Eleanor. Unnerved is scheduled to play festivals this Fall with a full release in 2015.

    Just a few minutes ago, the director posted the following image on Facebook claiming he made his cast watch these movies for inspiration and ideas for where the movie is heading. This is what convinced me to back this project immediately.

    The trailer below is an exercise in shot selection and aural cues. If you listen carefully, you can actually hear the awesome.

  • Blue Ruin

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    Blue Ruin is a classic American revenge story that recently won the FIPRESCI International Critics Prize at the Cannes Film Festival where it screened in the Directors’ Fortnight. The film follows a mysterious outsider whose quiet life is turned upside down when he returns to his childhood home to carry out an act of vengeance. Proving himself an amateur assassin, he winds up in a brutal fight to protect his estranged family.

    From the look of the trailer it just sort of appears to be a pretty standard revenge flick. But I sense something more. I sense some real psychological thrills and tension. I think this movie has a lot more going for it than meets the eye. A little bit of Frozen River, a little bit of Match Point and a little bit of Death Sentence. Maybe even some Prisoners. I don’t know; I think this trailer, despite its sort of standard film, has me really intrigued about what else might be going on in here. Does this feel like something you’re interested in?

    Blue Ruin is written and directed by Jeremy Saulnier and stars Macon Blair, Devin Ratray, Amy Hargreaves, Kevin Kolack and Eve Plumb. Take a look at the trailer below and see what you think.

  • 2013 Independent Spirit Awards NOMINEES

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    spirit awards 2013
    To the surprise of no one, Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave leads all nominations this year with seven – including of course best picture, best director, best screenplay and three of the four acting categories.

     
    And they’re back. Awards season. Of the bigger ceremonies, The Spirit Awards are certainly among the favorites here in the third row. We always feel obliged to kick off our shoes and socks, roll up our cuffs and PBR me ASAP along with the guests of the award show – which will be held on March 1st (the day before the Oscars) literally on a beach in Santa Monica. And to add to the fun, Patton Oswalt will be hosting the awards. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

    These are just the nominees and the actual statue handout is a long way off. Though there’s not really much in here to be surprised about with these nominations, excitement does begin to build today and we’re super excited about this year’s crop of movies that are actually good!

    Catching my eye off the pitch is a nod to Spring Breakers for best cinematography. That’s cool it didn’t get lost in the shuffle. And I didn’t see The Spectacular Now (I don’t think it looks all that interesting), but I am happy to see Shailene Woodley back again for her role. Also Mud being recognized for not only best director (Jeff Nichols), but also getting the Robert Altman Award which is cool.

    How bout you? Anything on the below list catching your eye?

    BEST FEATURE
    12 Years a Slave
    All is Lost
    Frances Ha
    Inside Llewyn Davis
    Nebraska

    BEST DIRECTOR
    Shane Carruth, Upstream Color
    J.C. Chandor, All is Lost
    Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave
    Jeff Nichols, Mud
    Alexander Payne, Nebraska

    BEST FEMALE LEAD
    Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
    Julie Delpy, Before Midnight
    Gaby Hoffman, Crystal Fairy
    Brie Larson, Short Term 12
    Shailene Woodley, The Spectacular Now

    BEST MALE LEAD
    Bruce Dern, Nebraska
    Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
    Oscar Isaac, Inside Llewyn Davis
    Michael B. Jordan, Fruitvale Station
    Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club
    Robert Redford, All Is Lost
    » Read the rest of the entry..

  • “A Clockwork Orange” Reboot? “Alex” will Hit Theaters Next Year

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    Another case here of “I don’t know much about it but I’m fascinated to learn more. I found this little droogie over at Quiet Earth and simply had to share. It looks like someone is trying to reboot or maybe sort of remix Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange. Now one might think most would immediately scream blasphemy at even the thought of such an idea. And given that A Clockwork Orange is my favorite movie of all time (and Kubrick my favorite director), you might think I’d be among them. And yet…

    There’s an interesting idea at the heart here and I for one can’t wait to seek this out somewhere next year when it hits theaters. After viewing the trailer it seems clear that writer/director Florian Frerichs isn’t trying to capitalize on Kubrick; but rather paying a low budget homage here. I like the time period, setting and look of this future. Plus the fact that the plot seems to stem from finding an old VHS copy of A Clockwork Orange warms my heart (reminds a little of Human Centipede II no?).

    In the near future the society of a megalopolis is divided into two fractions: on one side a super-rich minority, led by the ruthless dictator Lucius (Werner Daehn), living a life of debauchery and decadence. On the other side the vast majority, dwelling in different degrees of nearly unbearable poverty.

    When the young Frederick (Nikolai Kinski) comes in possession of the partial copy of a long forbidden Stanley Kubrick movie, it sparks a growing movement amongst the city’s formerly aimless youths, developing fast into serious opposition to the ruling system, which retaliates with rapidly increasing brutality. Frederick becomes Alex, his friends the new droogs. But are they even aware of the consequences of their actions?

  • How Do You Write A Joe Schermann Song: Available March 26th!

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    At last year’s Flyway Film Festival, Matt and I were honored to be among jury members for the fictional narrative feature category. While voting, it was a pleasure to award best director to Gary King for his musical, How Do You Write A Joe Schermann Song. Now, some may be screaming bias, but our jury is not alone in the festival world of awarding HDYWAJSS accolade after accolade. And now for the good news…

    You can see HDYWAJSS starting Tuesday no matter where you are. You don’t have to wait for a festival screening to check it out as it will be available for download on several major platforms (Vudu, Hulu, iTunes, Amazon, etc.) and a DVD and Blu-ray will also be available on Tuesday. Here’s the OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE

     

    As a side note, if you’re in the Minneapolis area, I’ll see you at the upcoming screening on April 11th because despite being able to see it at home starting Tuesday, quite honestly if you can get to a big screen to see this spectacle. It’s quite shiny! Sign up for the Tugg to ensure your spot today. It will be at the Southdale AMC. Probably see you before and after stumbling from bar to bar in the area.

  • “The Pirate Bay – Away From Keyboard” | Free Online

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    from makeuseof.com and Wikipedia

    Simon Klose, the Swedish documentary and music video maker, wants you to pirate his film, TPB AFK (The Pirate Bay Away From Keyboard), and he’s not even kidding. His documentary about file-sharing website The Pirate Bay premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival on February 8th, opening the festival’s documentary section, and was released online for worldwide free download (or purchase) at exactly the same time on YouTube (embedded below) and on The Pirate Bay.

    Despite these free viewing options, the film has raised approximately $22,000 with over 2000 paid downloads (with a base price of $10). For those who wish to support the creators, apart from online donations, they can buy the DVD version and digital download. The pre-order price of the DVD is $23 and a digital download is $10, which comes with deleted scenes and bonus material. Pre-orders can be made via the official movie website.

    The documentary covers the stories of Pirate Bay administrators Fredrik Neij, Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, and Peter Sunde as they handle their 2009 Sweden court case about civil and criminal copyright laws. After being convicted, they are then forced to handle life “away from keyboard”.

    “The cool thing is that you guys are going to be part of the premiere.… We’re streaming the film online, for free. You can download it, you can share it, you can remix it… It’s all up to you,” said Klose. “I’m doing this because I believe – from a personal perspective – I want my films to be seen by as many people as possible, so my problem is that a normal copyright would become an obstacle between me and my audience.”

    AFK puts together about two years’ worth of footage, starting from 2009, that covers the entire story. The funding of the movie came partially from Kickstarter (around $50,000), and the rest of the budget was funded by programs that support the arts and free expression.

    The film has already premiered online, was shown at the Berlin International Film Festival, and is set to be shown at SXSW in March.

    My review

  • Independent Spirit Awards NOMINEES

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    Moonrise Kingdom and Silver Linings Playbook lead the Indie Spirit Award noms collecting five nods each, including best picture.

     
    I guess it’s that time of year already. The Gotham awards were last night and from here until Oscar night there will be loads of movie award presentations and publications. A favorite of RowThree is of course the Indie Spirit Awards. Unlike the Oscars it is very much low-key and casual. Flip-flops and cans of Coors can be readily spotted at the “ceremony”.

    That isn’t to say the awards don’t hold some regard. Many believe these awards are more important and even apropos than Oscar and certainly more than The Golden Globes. So excitement begins to build as the nominees were announced today. Very happy to see Beasts of the Southern Wild getting some love and of course one of my ladies Rosemarie DeWitt is in here too. Seeing Ann Dowd of Compliance is a delightful surprise as well.

    How bout you? Anything on the below list catching your eye?

    BEST FEATURE
    Beasts of the Southern Wild
    Bernie
    Keep the Lights On
    Moonrise Kingdom
    Silver Linings Playbook

    BEST DIRECTOR
    Wes Anderson, Moonrise Kingdom
    Julia Loktev, The Loneliest Planet
    David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook
    Ira Sachs, Keep the Lights On
    Benh Zeitlin, Beasts of the Southern Wild

    BEST FEMALE LEAD
    Linda Cardellini, Return
    Emayatzy Corinealdi, Middle of Nowhere
    Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
    Quvenzhané Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild
    Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Smashed

    BEST MALE LEAD
    Jack Black, Bernie
    Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook
    John Hawkes, The Sessions
    Thure Lindhardt, Keep the Lights On
    Matthew McConaughey, Killer Joe
    Wendell Pierce, Four
    » Read the rest of the entry..

  • Flyway Pubcast #5 – Troy Bernier

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    Every indie film maker’s work is tough going and on some level a passion project. They’re doing it because they want to. And every single one of them will tell you how hard they worked on their project and how much love they put into it. But maybe more heart and sweat went into this film maker’s movie than any of the others, with their production of Planet X Part II: The Frozen Moon.

    Troy Bernier is co-writer/producer/director on this project and it has come to the attention of Flyway through a documentary (Journey to Planet X) that showcases the hard work these guys have put into their films. Troy was a blast to sit and talk with – almost as much of a blast as his film.

    To listen, hit the play button on the player above or grab the raw .mp3:
    http://rowthree.com/audio/Flyway2012/Troy-Bernier.mp3

     

     

    Relevant Links:
    ginfilms.com
    Spotify soundtrack
    IMDb
    Flyway Film Festival

  • Flyway Pubcast #4 – Philippe Lupien and Vincent Ethier

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    Once again we get some returning film makers to Flyway and each year their stuff gets better and better. So good was their short this year, that it won best short film. And with the fantastic line-up of short films at this year’s festival, that is indeed a true honor. These guys are the most easy-going guys we’ve ever had the pleasure of talking with and it’s so great to have this level of craft at the festival. While it was fun discussing working with The Devil vs working with children, I think the highlight was working on English vocabulary and Matt and Andrew learning hard-core cursing in French. Good times.

    To listen, hit the play button on the player above or grab the raw .mp3:
    http://rowthree.com/audio/Flyway2012/felipe-vincent.mp3

     

    Relevant Links:
    Vincent on Twitter | Facebook
    Philippe on Twitter | Facebook
    Flyway Film Festival

  • Please Help “How to Write a Joe Schermann Song” Win a Gotham Award

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    It’s no secret that here in the third row we’re big fans of indie filmmaker Gary King. One of things we like about King’s pictures are that he’s not afraid to take chances and try new things. His latest film, How Do You Write a Joe Schermann Song is a musical dramedy; and in the world of film today, it certainly can be said that this is a risky choice. But per usual, Gary and his fantastic cast and crew were really able to pull it together. In fact, it’s pulled together so well that it’s made it to the short list for an IFP Gotham Audience Choice Award!

    While the possibility of an actual nomination for a Gotham Award is pretty exciting, the film is going to need your help to get there. I don’t have my personal review for the film posted quite yet, but trust me when I say the film is worth supporting (trailer). It’s been taking home awards left and right from various festivals and in fact just took home the award for Best Director at Flyway Film Festival (where I am right now as I type this out).

    So please take just a moment or two to poke this link with your digital arrow and place your vote. You get five votes total if you’ve got personal investment in any of the other films, but please vote for Joe Schermann as at least one of your five choices (you can only vote for one if you choose). Up against higher profile films like Silver Lining Playbook and Beasts of the Southern Wild, it’s going to need everyone’s help to (deservedly) stand above the rest.

    The 5 nominees will be chosen from your votes and will be invited to attend the Gotham Awards where the winner will be announced live. The second round of voting will begin on November 5th, 2012 and will feature the top 5 films from round one. The winner of the Audience Award, powered by Festival Genius will be announced at the 22nd Gotham Independent Film Awards on November 26th, 2012.

  • Need More Jeremy Renner? Help Support “Ingenious”

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    If anyone out there hasn’t gotten enough Jeremy Renner over this past year – and who has? – there’s a little more we can (possibly) see of him in a slightly older production entitled Ingenious.

    The movie has played a lot of festivals around the globe over the past couple of years and has gotten fairly positive reviews – mostly for the chemistry and performances of Mr. Renner and Dallas Roberts. Now it appears the studio is trying to rake up the scratch enough to get the film a wide release; and that’s where you come in.

    A KickStarter campaign has started up in an effort to help raise the money so we can all get the chance to see this. It looks like a pretty decent piece of indie fare and again, at this point I don’t think you can really go wrong with Renner in the lead:

    This is a true story of two friends, a fast-talking salesman and a small-time inventor who are constantly scheming; trying to find that “next big thing” that will have them set for life. The problem is that none of their ideas seem to pan out. On top of that, their gambling habits threaten to shut down their business for good. At the moment when all seems lost, they have a breakthrough that would change their lives forever. What happens next has to be seen to believed and truly reaffirms the importance of persistence and the power of sheer ingenuity. Also starring Ayelet Zurer, Eddie Jemison and Richard Kind, the film is directed by Jeff Balsmeyer.

    You can find out more at the film’s official site and I’ve stuck a trailer under the seats. If you like what you see, be sure to head over to the KickStarter campaign and drop off a couple of dollars – so I can see the movie. *smirk*

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