Big Eyes and Birdman: Playing Catch-up Before the Oscars

Laura and I have been playing catch-up, trying to see lots of movies before the Oscars. Sometimes we go alone, sometimes together and sometimes we get our husbands to come with us. In the last three weeks we’ve seen:
Big Eyes, big eyes

The Imitation Game, Imitation game

Rosewaterrosewater

Citizenfour, citizenfour

Birdman. Birdman

and Into The Woods. I couldn’t capture the poster for Woods. The website rolled out pictures of all the characters and wouldn’t stop.

Laura also saw St. Vincent, but I waited too long and it was gone by the time I was ready to go.

Citizenfour really made us think about the reach of government into our private lives and the way the dots of our lives can be connected. Then Paris and Charlie Hebdo happened and I wondered if maybe that reach was okay if it could stop such horrible events. It’s a thorny question.

Our local theater has a Thursday program that brings films that might not be big draws to the local 14 year old boys who want Transformers and Super Heroes movies. Usually a film is shown at 1pm, 4pm and at 7pm. We like the 4pm showings as we can get out of the movie and, if we haven’t eaten too much popcorn, go to dinner nearby.

We saw Big Eyes and The Imitation Game back to back in Annapolis (an hour away). It reminded us of a mini film festival. Laura and her husband have attended the Rehoboth Film Festival for at least 10 years and my husband and I have gone for the last four. That allows us to see films that don’t come to Easton or Annapolis and we usually rack up at least 12 movies in three days.

My husband and I didn’t go to that film festival in 2014. One of the attractions has been that the film festival was held in a huge movie complex with 15 theaters. Several of the theaters were set aside for the public, but the rest were turned over to the film festival which meant we could easily see three or four films a day for three days.

A big tent was erected in the parking lot with food, drink, and festival t-shirts, posters, etc. It was just steps away from the theater so everything was in one place. We loved that once you parked you didn’t have to move your car; you didn’t have to be outside very much (Festival is in November) and could see more films. Our tradition was to see three or four movies and then go out to dinner to discuss them.

Last year the big movie theater decided that 2014 would be the last year the Rehoboth Film Festival could have the big venue and not as many theaters as before. Some movies would be moved to the local high school. At that point my husband and I decided not to go. Too much car jockeying, trying to find a place to eat, rushing to get a seat, etc. We didn’t think it would be as much fun. We’ll see what happens in 2015. Laura and her husband went for one day. They’d registered for the whole festival, but business intervened. When you run a charter jet company, you fly when you get a request.

We still have movies to see before the Oscars. The Golden Globes gave us an idea of the ones we really don’t want to miss. Boyhood is at the top of my list.

boyhood

Rehobeth Independent Film Festival

The Festival  is over. Five days, fourteen films, and lots of popcorn later, we are inspired and exhausted. We saw some great films. Two of the most memorable were Come as You Are and Starbuck.

Two documentaries stood out. Vreeland which chronicled Diana Vreeland’s iconic style and contribution to fashion around the world, and The Invisible War which documents rape in the military. A congressional committee determined that rape was an occupational hazard. Really! Death, losing a limb, traumatic brain injury…those are occupantional hazzards of being in the military, but rape by a superior officer? And the only people you can complain to are often the people who are abusing you. Congress has been talking about this issue for years. Shame, shame, shame on congress for not doing something.

Because Laura and I write movie scripts, we critique the ones we think are flawed. Robot and Frank had a masterful performance by Frank Langella, but the script had some problems that great acting couldn’t overcome.

We go to the Festival with our spouses and other couples. We don’t schedule movies late at night because we go out to eat and discuss the movies we’ve seen during the day. The Buttery and a Touch of Italy (both in Lewes, DE) were two favorite dining spots this year.

The tent behind the movie theater is a gathering place and also had some good food. T-shirts with Laura’s mermaid poster on them almost sold out.

  

I was told that one person bought 25 tickets. That’s five movies a day for five days. We could hardly keep straight what we’d seen when we saw four in a day. Fourteen was enough, although I have a huge queue on Netflix of the movies we didn’t have time for.

Laura Wears Her Pretty Woman Hooker Boots

Laura writes…

Last night was the fund-raising kick-off for the Rehoboth Independent Film Festival. My artwork was chosen to represent the Festival on its posters and programs, t-shirts, etc.

I’ve had a pair of spike heeled thigh high, ostrich skin (vinyl) boots for years. They sit in my closet taunting me to wear them. But everytime I put them on I feel like Julia Roberts playing the hooker in Pretty Woman. So I take them off and put them back in the closet.

Mala and I went to this gathering of eclectic arty film buffs. It seemed the perfect time for me to indulge my “I am an ARTIST!” persona.

Note: I did NOT pair my boots with a sky high miniskirt. NO one needs to see that.

Nobody even looked at my boots. These were the shoes worn by the Festival’s Board President.

Trailers for several of the movies were previewed at the party Awesome! It will be really hard to pick which ones I want to see.

This is me with the Festival Board: President, Eric Kafka; Executive Director, Sue Early; Festival Program Directory, Joe Bilancio.

I’ve been attending the Film Festival for the last ten years. It’ s four days each year I don’t miss. There are independent films from all over the world. When I leave, I always feel like I’ve had a mini global vacation. (The inspiration for the title of my artwork: “Come to the Fest and Sea the World.”) And like any other vacation, I always come back having gained a few pounds. There are sooooo many absolutely fabulous restaurants in Rehoboth and Lewis. And of course I have to do my best to try them all. Luckily my boots don’t care how fat I get!

If you haven’t been to the Rehoboth Independent Film Festival, go! And bring YOUR wildest boots. I guarantee, you’ll feel right at home!