Tuesday, February 25, 2014

February Film Club News

Ah, film noir. Isn't that just one of our favorite genres? And what would filmmakers have done if venetian blinds hadn't been invented? Did you always wish you knew more about film noir? If that's the case, then you'll be thrilled that our own John Anderson will be giving a lecture on that subject. Here's the info:

NCFC host and Q and A moderator John Anderson will be giving a lecture entitled CLUES IN THE NIGHT: IDENTIFYING FILM NOIR on Friday, February 28th at 2:30pm at Mira Costa College. 1 Bernard Drive in Oceanside CA in Administration 1000.

Film Noir is one of the most popular American film genres, and it is often used as evidence to describe a certain dark mood that permeated society in the post WWII era.  The term itself, however, is a fairly imprecise category of film classification, and misusing the terms distorts the role that movies played in reflecting U.S. cultural trends and anxieties.  Mr. Anderson will talk about the evolution of the Noir sensibility as it applies to film, focusing on how themes and images with the films congealed into a widely appreciated film style.
Hopefully, many of our members will be in attendance. See you Friday at 2:30.

Our next film is In a World to be shown Sunday, March 9 (don't come next Sunday, March 2. No one will be there!) What's amazing about this film is that it was written, directed and starred Lake Bell. How often does a woman become a triple threat in Hollywood? The film is about a voice coach who wants to be a voice-over star. Her father dominates the voice-over world which creates the theme for the film - a father/daughter conflict. It's also about the male dominated profession and how a woman breaks through it. This quirky, funny film is full of believable characters, even some cameos of well-known celebrities.

I know there was lots of controversary about Thor Heyerdahl's various theories and voyages. But wasn't the film fun to watch? It was so well photographed and acted. Just a really fun adventure. Most scientists didn't believe his theory, but here's one who thought it might partially be true. This is from the June, 17, 2011 Telegraph, reported by Richard Alleyne:


Don't forget to watch the Academy Awards Sunday, March 2. I have no idea who is going to win any of the Oscars. It should be an interesting show.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Ready for Some Adventure? How about Kon Tiki?

Next Sunday, February 9th, we're all in for a real treat and some great adventure. We'll be viewing Kon Tiki, the 2013 foreign language film Oscar nominee. See you at 3:00 at the Digiplex in Oceanside.
Here are John Anderson's questions for the film.
1. Why does the film invoke so many biopic conventions?
2.  What is the underlying psychological motivation of the voyagers?
3.  What role does movie making play in Heyerdahl's journey of self transformation?
4.  What are the merits and problems associated with Heyerdahl's thesis?
Ponder them as you view Kon Tiki and be ready for a discussion after the film.

 More about Fruitvale Station
Oscar Grant's mom, stars of the film Michael B. Jordan and Octavia Spencer
I don't know about you, but I always think about a film afterwards and want to look things up on Google. I'm always curious about the film several days later. I wondered why Octavia Spencer had a producer credit on the film. Here's what she said:

"When the film lost key funding for its shoestring budget of less than $1 million, Octavia took on an executive-producer role and started raising money.

"I shamelessly started calling my friends I knew had deep pockets, friends in which twenty-five grand wouldn't hurt. And I kicked in some of my own money," says Spencer. "I didn't want any of Ryan's vision to be sacrificed."

Spencer also tapped her Hollywood pals to appear in the movie, including Ahna O'Reilly, and Kevin Durand and One Tree Hill's Chad Michael Murray, who were chosen to play the cops most directly involved in the shooting. The 6-foot-5 Durand had to be brought in "on my insistence," says the relentless Spencer. He didn't want to be known as the guy responsible for Grant's death, even on film.

"I told him that was why we needed him. We needed someone to bring the humanity to that officer."

In Memoriam

We lost two of our most gifted actors this week - Maximillian Schell who played so many roles but will best be remembered as the defense attorney in Judgement at Nuremberg. He won the best actor Oscar for that performance.

Philip Seymour Hoffman, another Oscar winner died this week. I'll never forget him as Truman Capote. He was just such a great actor. He'll truly be missed.

See you on the 9th.