Friday, September 12, 2014 – Memphis, Director Tim Sutton

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In MEMPHIS, a strange singer with ‘god given talent’ drifts through the mythic city of Memphis under its canopy of ancient oak trees, shattered windows, and burning spirituality. Surrounded by lovers, legends, hustlers, preachers, and a wolf pack of kids, the unstable performer avoids the recording studio and is driven to spend time in his own form of self-discovery. Shown in fragments, his journey drags him from love and happiness right to the edge of another dimension. Featuring an explosive performance and score from the singular recording artist-come-wizard, Willis Earl Beal, MEMPHIS is a film steeped in folklore, music, surrealism, and the abstract search for glory. A maverick artist with an idiosyncratic but rigorous vision for his music, performances, writing, and drawings, Willis Earl Beal’s evocative voice touches the outer edge of folk, soul, gospel, and R & B. In his words and gestures, Beal strives to follow in the footsteps of curious, adventuresome storytellers like Tom Waits, Nick Cave, and David Lynch, artists whose peculiar view of things renders even the most ordinary aspects of life strange and unnervingly emotional. Director Tim Sutton joins us for a conversation on the getting inside the mind and heart of this iconoclastic artist.

Q & A with Director Tim Sutton at Sundance Selects Theatre, Los Angeles this weekend!!

For news and updates on Memphis go to: http://www.memphis-film.com

On Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/memphisthefilm  

On Twitter:  https://twitter.com/MEMPHIS_film

“It’s a marvel, a vision to feel and contemplate. A filmmaker of supreme talent and confidence.” - Alan Scherstuhl, Village Voice / LA Weekly

“An ethereal, mesmerizing film.” – Davy Rothbart, GQ 

“AUDACIOUS. My favorite film at this year’s Sundance. I cannot prepare you for the intense experience you will have when watching this visionary film.” - Jesse Hawthorne Ficks, San Francisco Bay Guardian 

“With his loamy mosaic of drifting moods and troubled memories, Sutton offers a pictorial translation of the blues, a vision of an American classicism sheltered by the urban landscape’s mystical embrace.” - Richard Brody, The New Yorker 

 OFFICIAL SELECTION: Venice Film Festival, Sundance Film Festival and Bamcinemafest

 

Friday, September 12, 2014 – Rocks in My Pocket, Director Signe Baumane

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Zeitgeist Films is proud to present the US Theatrical release of ROCKS IN MY POCKETS, the debut animated feature by Signe Baumane. ROCKS IN MY POCKETS had its World Premiere at the 2014 Karlovy Vary Film Festival where it won the FIPRESCI Prize and was the first animated feature ever to take part in the Karlovy Vary International Competition. In the animated gem ROCKS IN MY POCKETS Latvian-born artist and filmmaker Signe Baumane tells five fantastical tales based on the courageous women in her family and their battles with madness. With boundless imagination and a twisted sense of humor, she has created daring stories of art, romance, marriage, nature, business, and Eastern European upheaval—all in the fight for her own sanity. Employing a unique, beautifully textured combination of papier-mâché stop-motion and classic hand-drawn animation (with inspiration from Jan Svankmajer and Bill Plympton), Director Baumane stops by to talk about her poignant and often hilarious tale of mystery, mental health, redemption and survival.

Q & A with Signe Baumane at the Laemelle Royal in Los Angeles Saturday,  September 13th and Sunday, September 14th.

For news and updates on Rocks in My Pockets go to: http://www.rocksinmypocketsmovie.com//

The film will open at the 
Laemmle Royal
 at 11523 Santa Monica Blvd in Los Angeles on September 12th with a national release to follow.

“Boasting a narrative of extraordinary complexity and density, stuffed with irony, humor and tales-within-tales… a fascinating and very personal look at mental illness, as well as familial and societal dictates and dynamics.” –Alissa Simon, VARIETY

“With ‘Rocks In My Pockets,’ Signe Baumane presents a sharp, surprising and funny animated feature, plumbing the depths of depression via her family history. Guided by Ms. Baumane’s almost musically accented voice-over, this hand-drawn debut feature is based upon the mental struggles of her Latvian grandmother and other relatives. It’s told with remorseless psychological intelligence, wicked irony and an acerbic sense of humor.” – Nicholas Rapold, NEW YORK TIMES

“Signe Baumane examines her family members’ history with mental illness (as well as her own struggles) with humor, delicacy and eye-catching animation techniques… Her commitment and talent is overwhelming, and her production is about as “independent” as it gets. Because Baumane had total control over the movie, we’re treated to splendid and surreal images like these.”
– Whitney Matheson, USA TODAY

Friday September 12, 2014 – A Picture of You, Director J. P. Chan

A Picture of You posterKyle and Jen, estranged siblings, travel from New York City to rural Pennsylvania to pack up the home of their recently deceased mother. While there, they make a discovery that turns their world upside-down. A Picture of You is a serious movie about life that gets sideswiped in the supermarket parking lot by a funny movie about death. It’s a story about family, loss, secrets, letting go, and starting anew. Director J. P. Chan joins us to talk about his very entertaining film, the travails of funding an indie film and revelatory power of creativity.

Q & A with director J. P. Chan Saturday, September 13th and Sunday, September 14th at the Laemmele Playhouse 7 in Pasadena!

For news and updates on A Picture of You go to: apoyfilm.com

“Nimbly avoiding the excesses of melodrama and the recessiveness of mumblecore, Chan and his likably low-key cast navigate hairpin turns from drama to comedy to outright farce with an impressive sense of proportion.” – Los Angeles Times

“A curiously likable, entertainingly laid-back Asian-American take on all-too-familiar dysfunctional family tropes, this Kickstarter-enabled effort boldly mines farce along with sentiment.” – Variety

“Sensitive and understated, J.P. Chan’s A Picture of You balances humor and sentiment with an instinctive hand, skillfully unearthing honest, unexpected laughs amid intense grief.” – The Village Voice

“Chan and his cast, especially the truly great Mei, find the truth in the ridiculous enough for it to work on its own modest terms.” – RogerEbert.com

“Subverts cliché…there’s enormous warmth.” – The New York Times [A New York Times Critics' Pick]

Friday, September 12, 2014 – The Green Prince, Director Nadav Shirman

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Set against the chaotic backdrop of recent events in the Middle East, Nadav Schirman’s THE GREEN PRINCE retraces the details of a highly unprecedented partnership that developed between sworn enemies. In the style of a tense psychological thriller, this extraordinary documentary recounts the true story of the son of a Hamas leader who emerged as one of Israel’s prized informants, and the Shin Bet agent who risked his career to protect him.  Based on Mosab Hassan Yousef’s bestselling memoir Son of Hamas, THE GREEN PRINCE exposes a complex world of terror, betrayal, and impossible choices. Through exclusive first-hand testimony, dramatic action sequences, and rare archival footage, decades of secrets come to light in this unflinching exploration of a profound spiritual transformation and the transcendent bonds of friendship. THE GREEN PRINCE will challenge much of what you know about the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict. From the Academy Award® Winning Producers of MAN ON WIRE, SEARCHING FOR SUGAR MAN and ONE DAY IN SEPTEMBER. Director Shirman joins us for a fascinating conversation about a complex man and the incredible circumstances he came from.

For news and updates on The Green Prince go to: musicboxfilms.com/the-green-prince

The Green Prince opens in New York at the Lincoln Plaza and Los Angeles at the Landmark Theatre on September 12th.

FOUR STARS! “Terrific. As gripping as any high-concept Hollywood thriller.” - Xan Brooks, The Guardian

“Captivating and emotional. Full of twists and turns.” - Anthony Kaufman, Screen International

“Like a fusion of Omar and The Gatekeepers…strikes an emotional chord well beyond the world of covert operations.” – Nicolas Rapold, Film Comment

“A thriller-like documentary. Full of incredible twists. Emotional.” – Boyd van Hoeij, The Hollywood Reporter

“A crowd-pleaser. Beautifully humanistic. Extraordinarily satisfying.” – Anthony Kaufman, Indiewire

Second Opinion: Laetrile at Sloan-Kettering, Director Eric Merola

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The War On Cancer, launched in the early 1970s, set the stage for a massive influx of new ideas in fighting the disease of cancer. Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, America’s leading cancer research center at the time, was assigned the task of testing an unconventional therapy called “Laetrile” in an effort to curb the public’s “false hope” in the alleged “quack” therapy. Ralph W. Moss PhD, a young and eager science writer, was hired by Sloan-Kettering’s public relations department in 1974 to help brief the American public on the center’s contribution to the War On Cancer. One of his first assignments was to write a biography about Dr. Kanematsu Sugiura, one of the Center’s oldest and leading research scientists as well as the original co-inventor of chemotherapy. While meeting with this iconic scientist to pen a biography on his 60-year career at Sloan-Kettering, Moss discovered that Sugiura had been studying  this “quack remedy” in laboratory mice, and with unexpectedly positive results. Director Eric Merola stops by Film School to talk about what happens when money, power and idealism converge.

Director Eric Merola will participate in Q&A’s after the 6 and 8 PM screenings on Friday and Saturday, September 5 and 6, and after the 4:05 and 6 PM screenings on Sunday, September 7 at the Laemmle Music Hall 3 in Los Angeles.

For news and updates on Second Opinion go to: secondopinionfilm.com/

“Though a documentary, it’s dramatic enough to be reminiscent of ‘The Insider’, the whistleblowing thriller about Big Tobacco.” – Graham Fuller, New York Daily NewsAugust 28, 2014

“Mr. Moss’s message is clear, shrewdly edited and peculiarly interesting.” – Anita Gates, New York TimesAugust 28, 2014

“See this film for a riveting account of the conflicts between corporate power and the public good.” – Counter Punch – August 29, 2014

“‘Nobody is going to pay $70,000 for a new cancer drug if they can buy Laetrile for 75 cents.” There you have it.”
—Reel Life with Jane – August 31, 2014

God Help the Girl , Director Stuart Murdoch

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In God Help the Girl, writer/director Stuart Murdoch creates a poignant coming-of-age story that doubles as a sublime indie-pop musical from one of indie pop’s biggest songwriters. The project began as a suite of songs, written while Murdoch was between records and tours as lead singer of Belle & Sebastian. He nurtured it for nearly a decade into a fully formed film, set in the bohemian fantasia of Glasgow’s West End, which is populated by mods, rockers, and emo kids who have no qualms about breaking into song and dance. Stuart aspired to tell the story of “a better summer, or at least a summer when something happened. It happened to a boy and a girl and a girl in a city roughly the same size and population of Glasgow. Stuart joins us for a conversation on the joys and challenges of creating art in different mediums, music and film.

For news and updates on God Help the Girl go to: us.godhelpthegirl.com/

“God Help the Girl” is a classic movie musical where people burst into songs of crystal purity whenever something is on their minds…a lively, playful, completely charming film” – Kenneth Turan, LA Times

“The whole phantasmagorical enterprise is so sweetly confident that it just about gets away with its entirely casual approach to believability.” – Catherine Bray, Time Out

“God Help The Girl is ultimately an affirmation of life and music: a quirky little how-to manual on surviving the worst of youth by learning how to contain it within a frame. “ – Noel Murray, The Dissolve

“God Help the Girl has a ramshackle charm and the naked sincerity of an earnest adolescent. It cuddles up; it wins you over.” – Xan Brooks, The Observer

“With bouncy pop tunes and a breezy tone, this Scottish musical sometimes feels so weightless that it seems to float right out of existence. At other times it’s startlingly dark and moving, touching on earthy emotions and important themes.” – Rich Cline, Contactmusic

AFTER, Director Pieter Gaspersz and Writer / Producer Sabrina Gennarino

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Set in the winter of 2002 in chilly upstate New York, AFTER tells the story of a middle class family struggling with the financial consequences of a failing family business and a series of intergenerational conflicts and rivalries. But, what truly threatens to upset their delicate balance– and shatter the emotionally fragile family matriarch, (played by Academy Award-nominee, Kathleen Quinlan)– is an intricately buried secret that, if revealed, could alter their lives irrevocably. AFTER is a provocative psychological drama about love, loss, and a family’s earnest and extraordinary efforts to deal with the emotional aftermath of tragedy. The film marks the exciting feature directorial debut of Pieter Gaspersz, who also produced with Sabrina Gennarino, who wrote the original screenplay. They both joins us for an engaging conversation on the power of denial, deception, and self-delusion, and the lengths we go to protect those we love.

For news and updates on After go to: Afterthefilm.com

OPENING AUGUST 15

LOS ANGELES   l   LAEMMLE NOHO 7

PHOENIX   l   AMC ARIZONA CENTER 24

​TAMPA   l   AMC VETERANS 24

The Kill Team, Director Dan Krauss

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In early 2010, a group of U.S. soldiers in southern Afghanistan – bored, frightened, angry, and primed to explode – intentionally killed civilians, planting weapons on their victims to stage the incidents as “good shoots.” One of the group, the platoon sergeant, collected fingers as trophies. They called themselves “The Kill Team.” From Oscar®-nominated director Dan Krauss comes THE KILL TEAM, a story about a young soldier in Afghanistan who attempted to alert the military to horrific atrocities being committed by U.S. soldiers, and who then himself became a target of one of the largest war crimes investigations in U.S. history. With extraordinary access to the soldiers who were convicted and the evidence used against them, this film takes us inside a story that was largely impenetrable to the media. Speaking with an astonishing degree of candor and articulateness, these soldiers describe a series of increasingly weighty psychological quagmires, each emblemizing the hazy morality of war, where the choices are often clear, but the best decisions seldom are. Director Krauss joins us for what promises to be a spirited conversation on this multi-faceted tale of life during wartime.

For news and updates on The Kill Team go to: killteammovie.com

WINNER – GRAND JURY PRIZE, TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL, 2013

“Stunning” – David Edelstein, New York Magazine

Powerful…jaw-dropping” - Stephanie Merry, The Washington Post

“Must-see viewing” – Ronnie Scheib, Variety

“Pulls no punches” – Steven Zeitchik, Los Angeles Times

“Devastating…a formidable contender” - Stephen Holden, The New York Times

“Has the kind of urgent intimacy that characterizes the best
such non-fiction films…astonishing” - Ian Bailey,The Globe and Mail

“Hits all the right buttons: political injustice, moral outrage, and
emotional catharsis” – Anthony Kaufman, Indiewire

“The most daring documentary of the year so far…a stunning, powerful film that boldly complicates the conversation around America’s wars” - Daniel Walber, Film School Rejects

“Riveting…morally probing” - Josh Ralske, MovieMaker Magazine

“An early contender for best documentary of the year” – David Kempler, Big Picture Big Sound

“Uniquely powerful” – Bilge Ebiri, Vulture.com

“Among the most vital documents of the war in Afghanistan” – David Ehrlich,Film.com

A Will for the Woods – Co-directors Amy Browne, Brian Wilson and Tony Hale

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What if our last act could be a gift to the planet? Musician, psychiatrist, and folk dancer Clark Wang prepares for his own green burial in this immersive documentary. While battling lymphoma, Clark has discovered a burgeoning movement that uses burial to conserve and restore natural areas, forgoing contemporary funeral practices that operate at the ecosystem’s expense. Boldly facing his mortality, Clark and his partner Jane have become passionate about green burial, compelled by both the environmental benefits and the idea that one can remain within the cycle of life, rather than being cut off from it. The spirited pair have inspired a compassionate local cemeterian, and together they aim to use green burial to save a North Carolina woods from being clear-cut.

The film follows Clark’s dream of leaving a loving, permanent legacy, and environmentalism takes on a deeply human intimacy. Documenting one community’s role in the genesis of a revolutionary movement, A Will for the Woods draws the viewer into a life-affirming portrait of people embracing their connection to each other and to timeless natural cycles. Co-directors Amy Browne, Brian Wilson and Tony Hale joins us for a conversation on a this moving portrait of a man facing his impending death and growing movement to go green as our last act.

For news and updates on A Will for the Woods go to: awillforthewoods.com

TED blog named us one of “9 documentaries that you need to see this year” calling it a “must-see documentary” which “has the potential to affect not just individual viewers but the American way of death.”

“An immersive, heartwarming tale…” Elias Savada, Film Threat

“The film has hit a cultural nerve.” Glenn McDonald, Discovery News

“A powerful, personal testament to the ‘green burial’ movement … with humor, eloquence, anguish and reflection.” Indy Week – Indy Pick, Sylvia Pfeiffenberger  

Indiewire’s “Project of the Day” August 7th, 2013

“This movie will open your eyes to a new way of thinking.” John Angelico, San Francisco Gate

Child of God, Actor Scott Haze

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Directed by acclaimed filmmaker James Franco, and based on the chilling novel by Cormac McCarthy, Child of God, tells the provocative story of Lester Ballad (Scott Haze), a dispossessed, violent man, attempting to exist outside the social order. Consecutively deprived of parents and housing and driven by famished loneliness, Ballard descends literally and figuratively to the level of a cave dweller asScott Haze Child of God he falls deeper into crime and degradation. Set in a small town in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Tennessee in the 1960s, Child of God is structured in three segments with each segment describing Ballad’s ever-growing isolation of from society and social mores. Lead actor Haze join us to talk about how his approach to this breakout role.

For news and updates on Child of God go to: childofgodfilm.wordpress.com/

“Child of God is dominated by Scott Haze’s fearless performance, a theatricalized fusillade of full-throttle feral craziness loaded with blood, snot, spit, shit and bile.” – The Hollywood Reporter

“Child of God showcases a jaw-dropping turn from Scott Haze as Lester Ballard, a feral pariah who rails at his oppressors” – The Guardian

“Ballard is God’s lonely man – a rustic Travis Bickle – and on-screen Haze gives an astonishing and brave performance of wildness and despair gone feral.” – Cine-Vue