Saturday, September 25, 2010

Best of the Festival Day is today.

Three amazing programs on our last day, including the winner of our Audience Award, Best Director, and Best Documentary, The Man of a Thousand Songs, playing in Best of the Festival 2.

Best of Festival 1

Best of Festival 2

Best of Festival 3

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Repeat screening of The Corridor tonight!

If you missed the sold-out screening of The Corridor last night, we are proud to announce a repeat screening tonight at 7pm in Park Lane 8.  You can purchase tickets now online or at our Atlantic Film Festival Box Office on the Spring Garden level of Park Lane mall all day.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Ride, Rise, Roar has been cancelled.

Please be aware that we have had to cancel our screening of Rise, Ride, Roar Thursday night in Park Lane 4 at 7:10pm.  We apologize for any inconvenience.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Best of the Festival program 3 Announced!

If you miss the CBC Atlantic Shorts Gala tonight you can now see them on Saturday, September 25th in our Best of the Festival program 3.  The Gala shorts will be preceded by the Best Canadian Short Film and Best Atlantic Short Film as chosen by our Festival Jury.  The screening will take place at 9:30pm at the Oxford Theatre.  See you there!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Add your voice to the conversation at the online program guide

We're on Day 3 of the Festival, and by now we've screened quite a few films.  We would really like to encourage everyone using the 30th Atlantic Film Festival's  Online Program Guide to sign in to rate and review what you've seen so far. There are some great reviews up already so why not add your voice to the conversation? We like to know what you loved or loathed so that we can make our programming the best it can be for future years.  Also I'm sure that filmmakers are keen to hear what you thought of their films.  You can get involved by heading here and signing up if you haven't already.  As well comments on the blog are always welcomed if you want to let us know what you think of the 30th Atlantic Film Festival.  Now go get out and see some films.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Fresh and Local Film: Light is the Day

If you’re on the hundred mile film diet, and want what’s fresh, independent and local at the festival, check out Halifax director Laura Dawe’s apocalyptic drama, Light is the Day. Shot in Pictou with a Halifax-based cast and crew, the film also boasts an awesome soundtrack of local music including Dog Day, Ruby Jean and the Thoughtful Bees, Jon McKiel and more. Forget international funding and corporate sponsors, much of Dawe’s film was paid for by her local community, with rock shows and dance parties serving as fundraisers.

Read all about the film’s evolution from a school assignment to a feature at the 30th Atlantic Film Festival in The Coast,  The National Post and Dal News

Join the Light is the Day Facebook group here

(posted by Programmer Tiina Johns)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Atlantic Film Festival Opening Day Film Link Round-Up for 16/09/10

The Atlantic Film Festival starts today! Thanks for the reminder New 95.7 I was a little groggy this morning. (link)

Entertainment Reported Stephen Cooke from the Chronicle Herald has some 1 minute film video reviews up on the Herald site.  Check out what he has to say about some of the big films at the Festival. You can even log in to give your own review. (link)

Hockey Night in Halifax (link)

Music & Image rocks on for another year (link)

Our Executive Director is a Man of Action (link)

Ann Verrall made a film out west and has brought it back to Halifax (link)

Lots of Bravo!FACT shorts at our 30th (link)

We finally got branded this year by our talented friends at Spectacle Group (link)

Come and see homegrown Cape Breton actress Allie MacDonald in Score: A Hockey Musical (link)

Look who's coming to Halifax! (link)

Tastiest film in the Festival (link)

Music+Movies=Music&Image (link)

Great documentary from Fredericton heads to Halifax (link)

The hard working team of Strategic Partners makes magic happen every year (link)

Come out tonight and party with the cast and crew of Score: A Hockey a Fort! (link)

Check out the amazing Behind the Scenes film stills show at ViewPoint Gallery, happening now and also make sure to attend their panel this Saturday at Sonic Temple (link)

Our Music & Image program is still doing great things for Atlantic Canadian recording artists (link)

Lots of great music themed films happening again at this year's Festival, most notably local doc A Drummer's Dream (link)

It's been noted previously but Glen Matthews really is in a lot of stuff at this year's Festival (link)

Our good friends at the 1st annual Canadian Surf Film Festival are having their official launch this Saturday at the AFF's Festival Headquarters (link)

I still laugh every time I even think about the signature menu that Fid put together for the 30th Atlantic Film Festival (link)

The Amazing, Unorthodox 'Howl'

Howl is one amazing but radically unorthodox feature film.

The first non-documentary by the famed factual filmmaking team of Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman--who fashioned the landmark flicks The Celluloid Closet and The Times Of Harvey Milk--Howl may not be the straightforward Beatnik biography audiences might be expecting.

Instead, Epstein and Friedman have decided to explore and explicate the epic 1956 poem itself, with only minor character flourishes to acknowledge writer Allen Ginsberg’s extraordinary life.

Of course, it helps that the electrifying actor James Franco plays Ginsberg, and that an amazing cast--from Mad Men’s John Hamm, to the likes of Treat Williams, Bob Balaban and David Straithairn--populate the dramatized sequences of the poem’s famed obscenity trial.

But what Epstein and Friedman really want to do is present how Howl felt as it was read aloud--which Franco does, pretty much in its entirety--fleshing out some of the more excessive imagery with fluid animated bits that help ease the sheer rush of verbiage as it hits the screen.

The result is a film that captures the idea of Howl--and its extraordinary times of restlessness and rebellion--that marked the Beat Era arrival on the international literary and arts scene.

Considering that Nova Scotia has become something of the final destination for Beat Era survivors and associates from the novelist and screenwriter Rudy Wurlitzer to the composer Philip Glass to the sculptor Richard Serra and finally the whole Shambala gang who transferred over from Boulder, Colorado, having Howl at the Atlantic Film Festival could be considered something of a homecoming.

Whatever the case, the film is an absolutely riveting watch, and has already sent me back to my audio recordings of Ginsberg, Kerouac and Ferlingetti.

Those expecting that straightforward biography might take heart in the fact that that a Hollywood film version of Jack Kerouac’s touchstone novel On The Road is on again, this time with Viggo Mortensen in the lead.

Mind you it’s a project that once was scheduled for the likes of Marlon Brando in the 1950s through to Johnny Depp on the 1990s, so I guess we’ll believe it when we see it up on the big screen.

Meanwhile, Howl is one of those ‘can’t miss movies’ at this year’s AFF.  (posted by Senior Programmer, Ron Foley MacDonald)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The 30th Atlantic Film Festival Starts Tomorrow!

Get your tickets now to see Score: A Hockey Musical and come party on Citadel Hill.  It's going to be a great night and we hope to see you there!

Monday, September 13, 2010

NSI Drama Prize information session for emerging Canadian filmmakers

We are very pleased to announce that on September 19th from 3:30pm-5:00pm filmmaker (her film The Exit plays in Shorts 2) & program advisor E. Jane Thompson will giving an informal information session on the National Screen Institute's Drama Prize at our Festival Headquarters at Victor's on Spring Garden road.  This is a free event open to all emerging Canadian filmmakers who are able to attend.  

What is NSI’s Drama Prize program?

An informal information session with filmmaker & program adviser, E. Jane Thompson

NSI Drama Prize is a market-driven short film training program for emerging Canadian filmmakers. Up to four teams are selected each year. The program is comprised of three phases: training; assignment; and production. It features intensive writer, director and producer training sessions. Following training, an assignment is tailored to each team. After evaluation of the assignment, successful teams receive $10,000 in cash and $30,000 in services to produce a quality short (under 10 minutes) film under the guidance and mentorship of senior industry professionals.

Find out everything you want to know about the program in this informal session.

I hope all eligible individuals will take advantage of this amazing opportunity.

Must See Shorts Part 2 - SIS and Little Children, Big Words

Decidedly different in tone from the (stellar) shorts mentioned earlier, but equally worth seeing, are SIS and Little Children, Big Words. If provocative cinema is your thing you'll certainly want to check these out. Two of the most daring films screening at the 30th Atlantic Film Festival, both revolve around childrens' misunderstanding of  the adult world and words. Contrasting the innocence of being a kid with the complex and sometimes harmful actions of adults, these films explore big themes (including parenthood, sexuality and childhood perception) with uncompromising honesty. Both represent the short film form at its very best. (posted by Programmer Erin Oakes)

Friday, September 10, 2010

Award Winners Arrive At Atlantic Film Festival

One thing the programming team here at the AFF is always on the lookout for are the acclaimed films from the International Festival Circuit. Many have already collected plenty of awards hardware, and I’d like to talk briefly about two major films that come to Halifax through the Atlantic Film Festival with accolades that make them, frankly, film events not to be missed.

First off, from this year’s Berlin Film Festival, comes the magnificent Russian drama How I Ended This Summer. Winner of three major prizes in the German Capital’s Film Fest--two acting awards and a citation for ‘artistic achievement’--it’s basically a two-person story set entirely on a remote arctic island.

Written and directed by up-and-comer Alexi Popogrebsky, How I Ended This Summer tells the story of two men--one older, one younger--who man a weather station and monitor radioactivity levels on an island that was once an important Cold War-era Soviet base.

When communication between the two men breaks down, the extraordinary landscapes take on an even larger role in the film. The result is a mesmerizing cinematic experience that pits the fragility of human nature against the monolithic and enduring influence of the land, weather and sea. 
For a complete change of environment--but not necessarily of pace--A Screaming Man trades the cool Russian summer arctic for the relentless heat of Central Africa. Winner of the Jury Prize this year at Cannes, this writer/director effort (Mahamat-Saleh Haroun) zeroes in on the relationship between a father and his son as violent rebellion shakes the former French colony of Chad to its very core.

Again, landscape plays a definitive role in this film, with the relatively lushness of the City eventually transforming to the blasted desert of the army emcampments on the outskirts of town. As Chadian society literally begins to break down, the bounds of family remain one of the few tangible values in a disintegrating world, and watching a man try to hold on to those values is indeed a heartbreaking exercise.

While both How I Ended This Summer and A Screaming Man take a while to build up narrative steam, they eventually climax in deeply moving and heavily emotional scenes that will stay with you for weeks, months and perhaps even years afterwards.

One final bit of advice. There’s a very good chance you’ll never, ever get to see 
A Screaming Man and How I Ended This Summer on the big screen in Halifax again. So this year’s AFF may be your only chance to catch these important examples of World Cinema the way they are supposed to be seen. (by Senior Programmer, Ron Foley MacDonald)

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Must See Shorts: The Legend of Beaver Dam and Sudden Death!

I don't want to oversell this at all, but if you want to have the best time you've ever had in a movie theatre ever you should go check out The Legend of Beaver Dam (screening in Shorts 2) and Sudden Death! (screening in Shorts 3).  Both are Musical Comedies, and both have a very unique and dark sense of humour. I generally hate musicals (as anyone who has heard me talk about Glee can attest), but I love these ones, so they must be doing something pretty great. More info to brainwash you into seeing them below (posted by Mark Flindall)

The Legend of Beaver Dam synopsis:
In this hilarious mini-musical where death metal meets summer camp, comedian Sean Cullen stars as the boy scout leader from hell whose tale of a one-armed slasher named Stumpy cuts just a little too close to the bone.

The Legend of Beaver Dam  Facebook Group

The Legend of Beaver Dam  Official Site

The Legend of Beaver Dam Online Program Guide link

Follow The Legend of Beaver Dam on Twitter: @StumpySam

Sudden Death! synopsis:
Two scientists must cure an epidemic dubbed Sudden Death Syndrome, which causes victims to abruptly break into song and dance—and then drop dead. This hilarious short musical simultaneously pokes fun and wholeheartedly embraces the musical genre, with clever choreography and undeniably catchy songs.

Sudden Death! Online Program Guide link

Follow Sudden Death! on Twitter: @suddendeath2009

Atlantic Film Festival Links Roundup for 09/09/10

Score: A Hockey Musical opens TIFF tonight and the 30th Atlantic Film Festival next Thursday (link)

Metro News: Highbrow Happenings (link)

Writers Guild of Canada just wants to let you know that we do indeed exist (link)

And Barney's Version has a MySpace page? (link)

And Everything is Going Fine has been cancelled

Please be aware that we have had to cancel our screening of Steven Soderbergh's documentary And Everything is Going Fine.  We apologize for any inconvenience. Any purchased tickets for this screening will be refunded or exchanged by our box office.

Do It Again with The Kinks at the Atlantic Film Festival.

Do It Again--better known as the Kinks documentary--captures the hapless spirit of the great British Invasion band just about perfectly. Never as bombastic as The Who or as purely innovative as The Beatles, The Kinks rate just below The Rolling Stones as the third most important of a very important batch of 1960s popular musicians.

So much so that Boston Globe music writer Geoff Edgers has made a very public quest to re-unite The Kinks in order to bring a little joy back into a troubled and disappointed world.

Trouble is, the band has been dormant since 1993. And the group’s leaders, brothers Ray and Dave Davies, currently seem to be in a strange kind of limbo.

Edgers himself appears to be in some kind of limbo in Do It Again. The Boston Globe--like many North American newspapers--is in big trouble, and he can be glimpsed in the film working as a UPS delivery driver for a week in order to squeeze out some non-musical features for the New York Times-owned paper.

His domestic life also seems a big wobbly, with his wife wondering if this Kinks Quest isn’t just some last-chance fanboy splurge coinciding with Edgers’s 40th.

As the journalist defiantly plows his way to England to track down the Davies brothers, his mania takes on some kind of weird logic. He uses his Boston Globe interview connections to quiz a bevy of stars on their views on the Kinks. Edgers takes it even further by asking each to perform a Kinks song with him on camera.

There’s a sweet magic that takes place when grizzled vets like Peter Buck, Sting and actress Zooey Deschanel tear into Kinks chesnuts with Edgers, in full voice, sometimes on banjo. It, somehow, connects directly to the Kinks’ own openness and sense of melancholy and nostalgia.

Edgers even gets a couple of surprisingly frank and illuminating interviews with music industry legends who’ve rarely been seen on film. Clive Davis--who signed the Kinks to Arista Records from 1977 to 1984, selling truckloads of discs like Low Budget and Come Dancing--is particularly frank. And the talk with 1960s producer Shel Talmy--who also produced the early Who--is a wonder of compressed pop music wisdom.

As Edgers and his director Robert Patton Spruill get closer to their quarry, they manage to catch two spectacular sequences that, I guarantee, will gladden every Kinks fans’ hearts. Without giving too much away, let’s just say that while Do It Again may not re-unite the band musically, it does put join up the most important parts of the band in continuous sequential videotape....

A must for pop culture fans, Do It Again plays at the 30th Atlantic Film Festival on Monday, September 20th at 9:25pm in Park Lane 4. Don’t miss it!  (by Senior Programmer, Ron Foley MacDonald)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Subscribe to the 30th Atlantic Film Festival eNewsletter

Just click on this link and fill in the form.  It's that easy.

Daydream Nation added to 30th Atlantic Film Festival Lineup!

Daydream Nation starring Kat Dennings and Josh Lucas has just been added to the 30th Atlantic Film Festival. About the film:

Only seventeen years old, Caroline Wexler (Kat Dennings) is facing a teenager’s nightmare: her widowed father has moved from the city to a tiny, nowhere town where the major tourist attraction is an industrial fire that seems destined to burn forever. Everyone under the age of nineteen is permanently stoned. Concocting new ways of getting high is a major hobby for most of Caroline’s classmates, including the lovelorn Thurston (Reece Thompson), who falls for Caroline the minute he lays eyes on her, although she’s more interested in someone else. And then there’s the minor inconvenience of a killer running around the neighborhood. Visually arresting, slyly funny and boasting its share of chills, Daydream Nation is a smart debut from Mike Goldbach (who co-wrote Don McKellar’s Childstar). An astute and frequently comic account of adolescent confusion and angst, the film exposes the wide rift between the adult and the adolescent worlds. No parent really knows how out of control their children are, but the adults in this world don’t seem to possess any more maturity than their juniors. Daydream Nation is driven by a stellar performance by Dennings as a girl who’s too smart to get sucked into teenaged melodrama, but has only a tenuous hold on her temper.

You can be rest assured that Kat Dennings Online (Kat's oldest and best fansite! according to Kat Dennings Online) is super excited.

Atlantic Film Festival Links Roundup for 08/09/10

It's sadly not playing at the Festival, but if you haven't seen the new teaser trailer for Hobo With a Shotgun you are failing at life (link)

NFB celebrates 30 years of support, and 4 films playing at the Atlantic Film Festival (link) (link)

The Coast on the full program (link)

Sue Carter Flinn dreams of Paris (or more specifically the movie Gainsbourg) (link)

The Shorts Report breaks down (guess what?), the shorts at the Atlantic Film Festival (link)

The Winnipeg Free Press blurbs on the Fest but doesn't mention the film we are screening from Winnipeg (link)

Score: A Hockey Musical scores a film festival hat trick (link)

Our national broadcaster gives us some love (link)

The Hollywood Reporter talks up everyone's favourite co-production market Strategic Partners (link)

NHL fans love film (or at least hockey films) (link)

Actor Glen Matthews breaks down the 30th Atlantic Film Festival (link)

Hey look Ma, an animation premiere (link)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Unsure of what to see at the 30th Atlantic Film Festival?

Why not check out some trailers? There are more being added every hour. Just follow the link and watch away (Closing Gala, Barney's Version pictured)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Atlantic Film Festival Links Roundup for 01/09/10

It's a new year and a new logo as we unveil the 30th Atlantic Film Festival lineup:

Halifax Metro blurbs it (link)

Yahoo News does the same (link)

The Chronicle Herald goes a little longer form (link)

And the kind folks at Telefilm Canada announce their support for our 30th year (link)

I hope everyone is as excited as we are for what promises to be an amazing year.

The 30th Atlantic Film Festival Box Office is now open!

Walk over and check us out in person at the Park Lane Mall in Halifax or online at (Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives pictured above)