Category Archives: Movies

Beau Bridges is PT Film Fest’s 2015 special guest

Award-winning actor and environmentalist Beau Bridges will be the special guest of the Port Townsend Film Festival when it celebrates its 16th renewal Sept. 25-27.

Bridges  is an award-winning character actor, who has appeared in more 50 features, including “The Other Side of the Mountain,” “Max Payne” and “The Descendants.” He co-starred with his brother, Jeff  Bridges, in “The Fabulous Baker Boys,” for which he received the Best Supporting Actor Award from the National Society of Film Critics. (That 1989 movie, incidentally, was filmed in Seattle, co-starring Michelle Pfeiffer.)

Bridges joins a growing list of festival guests who have attended the weekend facilities, appBeau Bridgesearing at a variety of gatherings and hosting a screening of one of their personal favorite films, followed by a Q&A. Feature and documentary films are screened throughout the weekend at several downtown venues, including free outdoor screenings each evening.

Past honorees include independent filmmakers John Sayles and Maggie Renzi (1014), Karen Allen (2013), Bruce Dern (2012), Buck Henry (2011), Dyan Cannon (2010), Cloris Leachman (2009), Piper Laurie (2008), Elliott Gould and Melissa Leo (2007), Malcolm McDowell and Greta Gerwig (2006), Debra Winger and Arliss Howard (2005), Jane Powell and Dickie Moore (2004), Peter Fonda and Shirley Knight (2003), Patricia Neal (2002), Eva Marie Saint and Vincent Schiavelli (2001) and Tony Curtis (2000).

Last week, Sayles announced he will shoot his next film, “To Save the Man,” in Port Townsend, using locations in and around , this coming summer.

Information: ptfilmfest.org

— MM

Bainbridge actress’ ‘Barely Lethal’ on screen May 29

The new film featuring Bainbridge Island’s Dove Cameron, “Barely Lethal,” opens in limited theatrical release and on-demand video on May 29.

The film also stars Hailee Steinfeld, “Game of Thrones'” Sophie Turner (Sansa Stark, y’all!), Jessica Alba and Samuel L. “What’s in Your Wallet?” Jackson.  Steinfeld plays a teen traine11268969_10152838440461373_1464498586879464115_nd from childhood to be an assassin who stows herself away to a bucolic little town to experience “normal” teen age. Cameron (currently starring on Disney Channel’s “Liv and Maddie,” as, well, both Liv and Maddie) plays the daughter in the host family where Megan (Steinfeld) has herself assigned as an exchange student.

“Liv and Maddie” has been renewed by Disney for a third season. She’s also featured in a Disney Channel original movie, “Descendents,” set for release on the mouse-eared cable channel in the very near future.

In his review of the film for Tribune News Service, critic Roger Moore writes, “The best lines go to Dove Cameron, as the edgy, eye-rolling “sister” in Megan’s host family. Her put-downs, long or short, are terminal.”

“Barely Lethal” hits movie screens in selected cities on May 29 before moving on to a wider release. No word yet on when it’ll hit Seattle-area cineplexes. The photo above was taken at the Los Angeles premiere of the film on Wednesday night (May 27).

— MM

 

Movies: ‘Serena’ might land with a thud, but at least it’s landing

“Serena,” the third pairing of Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence (“Silver Linings Playbook,” “American Hustle”) will finally be beamed onto a local movie screen when the Dragonfly Cinema shows it April 24-28.

The film has been panned (see Roger Moore’s review at kitsapsun.com/entertainment) as a waste of the star power that yielded four Academy Award nominations (including Lawrence’s win for “Silver Linings”) in just the two movies listed above.

But I’m of the opinion that anything with Jennifer Lawrence in it bears a look. So, there’s that.

The schedule of screenings is at dragonflycinema.com

Here’s a link to the review: http://www.kitsapsun.com/entertainment/movies-star-power-cant-save-serena_47681343

Film director Lynn Shelton visits Rose Theatre

Director Lynn Shelton, whose latest film “Your Sister’s Sister” has just been released, will visit the Rose Theatre, 235 Taylor St. in Port Townsend on July 16.

Shelton will attend the 7:20 screening of the film, then be available afterward for a Q&A session.

The comedy, starring Emily Blunt, Mark Duplass and Rosemarie DeWitt, was filmed entirely in Seattle and the San Juan Islands.

Information: 360-385-1089, rosetheatre.com

Bremerton movie house open in time for ‘Brave,’ ‘Abe Lincoln’?

Learned colleague Stevie Gardner reports that the latest plan for SeeFilm’s Bremerton Cinemas is to open on June 22.

That’s the week that Disney-Pixar’s “Brave” and “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World” come out, as well as what could be one of the really fun movies of the summer, “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.”

That’s an assortment that should test the capacity of the BCs’ various auditoriums, which range from upwards of 250 seats (for a biggie like “Brave”) to about 50 (for “End of the World”) and points between (“Abe Lincoln”).

 

 

Lascelles’ film to screen in Columbia Basin festival

Former North Kitsap resident Debora Lascelles is the director of the film “Upon Release,” which has been named an official selection to the Columbia Basin International Film Festival Aug. 15 to 19 in Vancouver, Wash.

Lascelles, who began her film studies at Olympic College before earning a scholarship for the prestigious cinematic arts program at the University of Southern California, was selected to direct the school-financed short film last year as a senior project.

The announcement isn’t just good news for Lascelles. One of the film’s stars, Kelly Huddleston, is a former Central Kitsap resident now working as an actress and comedian in Los Angeles.

Write a play! Make a film! But do it soon!

The Changing Scene Theatre Northwest and Bainbridge Arts and Humanities Council both have ways for you to show your creativity … if you act fast.

Bremerton’s Changing Scene Theatre Northwest is calling for submissions for the 10th edition of its popular “Summerplay” festival of one-act plays. Unproduced short plays can be submitted until May 30, with selected plays earning a spot in “Summerplay 2012: A Festival of New Works” later this summer at CSTN’s digs upstairs at the Bremerton Eagles Aerie 192 (205 Sixth St., at the corner with Washington Avenue). Plays must be no longer than 30 minutes, and should be submitted electronically, in either a pdf or doc format, to changingscenenorthwest@hotmail.com. Questions can be directed to CSTN artistic director Pavlina Morris, 360-813-1820 or changingscenenorthwest.org.

The Bainbridge Arts and Humanities Council is gathering entries fo the 2012 Celluloid Bainbridge Film Festival, a full day of screenings of short and feature-length films that have a Bainbridge connection — filmmakers, locations or subject matter. Submissions can be made until 5 p.m. June 1 (check bainbridgeartshumanities.org for details, or call 206-842-7901. Celluloid Bainbridge is set for Oct. 21 at the Lynwood Theatre, 4569 Lynwood Center Road.

Here’s hoping ‘Hunger Games’ star gets opportunity from her superstardom

Here’s a column by yours truly that’ll appear in the March 23 print edition of Kitsap A&E:

I’ve got mixed emotions about this week’s opening of “The Hunger Games,” which will place Suzanne Collins’ series of novels alongside “Twilight,” and “Harry Potter,” and “Lord of the Rings” as a mammoth page-to-screen franchise, and elevate the actress portraying its iconic heroine, Jennifer Lawrence, to film superstardom.
Years ago, I predicted big things for Lawrence. And now that she’s achieving them, I can’t even gloat; in fact, I feel a little bluesy.
She’s been an X-Woman. She’s been nominated for an Academy Award (for the indie film “Winter’s Bone”). And now, at 21, she’s Katniss Everdeen, in the first of three (at least) “Hunger Games” movies that will make, conservatively, a buhzillion dollars. And she’s not my little secret any more.
Before I became a Food Network junkie, and during those months of the year when the Mariners aren’t playing, I used to do a little channel surfing in the evenings, after I put my daughter to bed. One night I happened across “The Bill Engvall Show,” a sitcom featuring yet another stand-up comedian as the head of a dysfunctional household, where the humor came mostly from Dad being the cause of the bulk of the dysfunctionality, while the long-suffering wife and kids coped as best they could. I’d seen some of Engvall’s stand-up, and thought he was pretty funny, so I watched an episode.
It was terrible. Despite a pretty decent cast, which included Nancy Travis and “Saturday Night Live” veteran Tim Meadows, it was a mess, cable TV-level writers trying to adapt Engvall’s comedy routines into half-hour episodes of hilarious family foibles.
But Lawrence, playing the eldest of Engvall and Travis’ three offspring, impressed me. In the midst of all the banality, she stood out like a tulip in a mulch pile. She seemed to have the ability to elevate even the most imbecilic comedy, and at the same time there was a warmth and a naturalness to the way she played her more dramatic scenes — often negotiating with Engvall as her overprotective father.
Since then, Lawrence has done all the right things, taking a variety of movie roles after Engvall’s show got the plug pulled on it, and scoring a plum with the indie gem “Winter’s Bone.” The buzz around her started then, resulting not only in the Oscar nomination, but in opportunities to do big blockbuster films like “X-Men: First Class” and, ultimately, “The Hunger Games.”
Now Lawrence is known not only as a great actress, but as great box office. She’ll have the chance to be in blockbuster after blockbuster, and the big studios will throw millions at her because they know, with her name on the marquee, they’ll make millions upon millions in return.
It makes me remember my college radio days, when I did some of the programming for the fledgling KGRG-FM at Green River College in Auburn. A new student volunteer arrived from New Jersey, raving about this guy Springsteen, who was going to be huge, and telling us we should be playing at least one Springteen record (that was back when we played records) every hour.
I don’t remember the guy’s name, but he was right. Bruce Springstreen, with the 1975 release of “Born to Run,” went from being a Jersey phenom to one of the biggest stars in the world, selling out huge stadiums, going insta-platinum with every new release, and standing at the elbows of presidents and kings. He was, at once, as “important” as Dylan, but with a lot more show-biz appeal.
I bring up Springsteen not to show that I still remember any of what went on in college, but because of what he did with the power and freedom that superstardom brought him. Yes, he played to 60,000 a night in concerts that were sold out minutes after they went on sale.
But he always found time for smaller projects and causes that were meaningful to him, and to others. He stayed grounded, based, and he never stopped growing and learning, finding time and inspiration to go back to his musical roots, taking his fans along with him.
I hope Jennifer Lawrence can do the same thing. For every “Hunger Games” she’s going to have a chance to do in her career, I hope she finds — or creates, with her Katniss-generated power and Oscar buzz-induced clout — opportunities to do more “Winter’s Bone” type films — story-driven, small films that depend more on acting than on special effects — and take her fans along with her.
If she could could make me sit through “The Bill Engvall Show,” she can do anything.