Archives for January 2020

ARCHIVES

MOVIE REVIEW: “1917”

Mission impossible for real
Dean-Charles Chapman, George MacKay and Daniel Mays
Directed by Sam Mendes

Sam Mendes’s name for his film is right. It hits you in the face with the mud, blood and gloom that was there, heavily, relentlessly, during that terrible year following three years of horror and followed by an even worse one. Out of this war that Mendes described as “a chaos of mismanagement and tragedy,” he has made a war movie like none other. Eschewing regular scripts for war films, the ... more >

Talking with Sky Bergman. Her short “Mochitsuki” screens at SBIFF on Sunday

"What’s happening in your everyday life that you care about, that helps you learn, that’s making you grow?"

Sky Bergman is a filmmaker and teacher based in San Luis Obispo, California, a university town known for being the home of Cal Poly (California Polytechnic State University). In 2017 Bergman brought her documentary “Lives Well Lived,” which shared the wisdom of a group of gloriously happy senior citizens, to the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. It’s a wonderful film—which I hasten to ... more >

short film REVIEW: “READY FOR MY CLOSEUP”

Nurse Rose meet Nurse Becca

As a film reviewer/ connoisseur I see most of the films that come out each year. As the decades go on, the pleasure of seeing so many is still there and always will be. There is nothing like seeing a film in the cinema. Even with today’s annoying audiences (cell phones are one of the biggest nails in the cinema experience coffin!), I still love being in a movie theater. While there are many ... more >

OPINION: What happened to chronology?

Directors resort to the flashback too indulgently, it would seem

Introducing in a narrative flashbacks, fragments of dreams, partially remembered scenes has always been part and parcel of cinema. Examples abound. Look at classic films. The childhood sled scenes in “Citizen Kane” are indispensable. As is the famous flashback explaining the Gregory Peck character’s trauma in “Spellbound." The process works, when it is used within reasonable limits. When repeated ... more >

INTERVIEW: CAMILLE BROWN, director of “A Christmas Winter Song”

[Drama / 90 mins]
Ashanti, Stan Shaw and Sashani Nichole

Camille Brown recently achieved a distinction, one that has become a tradition. A female-directed film on Lifetime seems like a rite of passage for any woman behind the camera. Yet a Christmas movie makes it all the more special. “A Christmas Winter Song” aired throughout the month of December, is currently on-demand and will likely remain part of the network’s future holiday line-ups. I was ... more >

FESTIVAL NEWS: SBIFF35 will open with the Shelly Love-directed “A bump along the way”

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) earlier this week announced the lineup for the 35th edition, which will run January 15 to 25, 2020. The festival will feature forty-seven world premieres and seventy-one U.S. premieres from fifty countries. During a press conference SBIFF’s executive director Roger Durling said, “for 35 years, SBIFF has been a reflection of the city that ... more >