AUTHOR | Eric Althoff


SANTA BARBARA FILM FESTIVAL: 6 great films to check out

This year's 38th edition took place February 8th to the 18th

Festival season is in full swing, with some astonishing films that are sure to either be seen in a theaters or on a streaming platform soon. Here are six films from the Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2023 that you'll want to keep on your radar this spring: "26.2 TO LIFE" Director: Christine Yoo Amid the ongoing conversation about prison reform, documentarian Christine Yoo has ... more >

“MARLOWE”; by-the-book noir is eye-catcher! | REVIEW

Film is based on the 2014 novel 'The Black-Eyed Blonde' by John Banville
Starring Diane Kruger, Jessica Lange, Liam Neeson and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje
Directed by Neil Jordan

Ceiling fans, a dame of dubious motivations, drugs, sex, the sinister side of Hollywood, top hats and tommy guns, high stops from above ceiling fans, they’re all here in “Marlowe,” the new noir thriller from filmmaker Neil Jordan (“The Crying Game,” “The End of the Affair”), with Liam Neeson as the dependable yet perennially down-on-his-luck private eye Philip Marlowe. “Marlowe” finds Raymond ... more >

Fascinated about cults; “STOLEN YOUTH: INSIDE THE CULT AT SARAH LAWRENCE,” interview with filmmaker Zach Heinzerling

If anything filmmaker Zach Heinzerling hopes that as people watch his new docuseries “Stolen Youth: Inside the Cult at Sarah Lawrence,” they try to keep in mind that it’s easy, from the outside, to say “this could never be me.” Indeed, the filmmaker wishes viewers appreciate the power that a malevolent narcissist such as Larry Ray can have on young people who are trying to find their identity at ... more >


An interesting aspect of this time of year is how film festivals fall one after the other. As I was putting Palm Springs coverage to bed, Sundance was immediately up to bat. I wasn’t able to revisit Park City, Utah, this year—heading there in 2020 was one of my last big activities for me prior to lockdowns—but thankfully I was able to connect with several publicists, who had some absolutely ... more >


"There were like 160 young artists competing [...] I asked all of them to record a home video [...] that’s how I could meet them all (Jakub Piątek)

The Sundance documentary “Pianoforte” follows some of the world’s best young pianists as they compete at the renowned International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw. Among them are Vladimir Ashkenazy, Mitsuko Uchida, Krystian Zimerman and Kevin Kenner. They are teenagers, in that netherworld between youth and adulthood, and finding their way while simultaneously giving expression to their ... more >

Sundance: The issue of free speech in Indian country gets the documentary treatment in ‘BAD PRESS’’

Directors say that press freedom affects all Americans, not just Natives

Strictly speaking, Native American reservations are not American soil.  Thus it shouldn’t be surprising that many Indian tribes do not have press freedom codified into their constitutions.  This was the case of the Muscogee Creek nation in Oklahoma, where, in 2018, the tribe’s government repealed free speech protections for the Muscogee Nation News.  That led to a ground-up citizens campaign to ... more >

Hollywood Reporter hosts international feature shortlist in Palm Springs

Dhont, Iñárritu and others huddle around the subject of filmmaking during panel talks

PALM SPRINGS, Calif.—The Oscar is the goal, and before the final five, there is what’s called the “shortlist”—films generating buzz that may or may not get the nod.  The Hollywood Reporter’s Mia Galuppo and Kevin Cassidy led two panels at the Palm Springs International Film Festival of filmmakers shortlisted as Oscar contenders this year for best foreign feature. The first panel held at the ... more >