Friday October 2, 2015 – Drunk Stone Brilliant Dead, Director Douglas Tirola

Lampoon DSBD film poster I 

Download MP3 Podcast

Douglas Tirola‘s outrageous documentary DRUNK STONED BRILLIANT DEAD: THE STORY OF THE NATIONAL LAMPOON, is an inside look at the rise and fall of the legendary humor magazine that launched dozens of careers and broke thousands of taboos. From the 1970s thru the 1990s, there was no hipper, no more outrageous comedy in print than The National Lampoon, the groundbreaking humor magazine that pushed the limits of taste and acceptability – and then pushed them even harder. Parodying everything from politics, religion, entertainment and the whole of American lifestyle, the Lampoon eventually went on to branch into successful radio shows, record albums, live stage revues and movies, including ANIMAL HOUSE and NATIONAL LAMPOON’S VACATION, launching dozens of huge careers on the way, including John Belushi, Chevy Chase, Christopher Guest, Richard Belzer, Gilda Radner, Brian Doyle-Murray, Bill Murray, Joe Flaherty, Harold Ramis, Michael O’Donoghue, Doug Kenney, Henry Beard, George W. S. Trow, Chris Miller, P. J. O’Rourke, Michael O’Donoghue, Chris Rush, Sean Kelly, Tony Hendra, Brian McConnachie, Gerald Sussman, Ellis Weiner, Danny Abelson, Ted Mann, Chris Cluess, Al Jean, Mike Reiss, Jeff Greenfield, and John Hughes. As well as cartoonists, photographers and illustrators appeared in the magazine’s pages, including Neal Adams, Gahan Wilson, Michael Sullivan, Ron Barrett, Peter Bramley, Vaughn Bode, Bruce McCall, Rick Meyerowitz, M. K. Brown, Shary Flenniken, Bobby London, Edward Gorey, Jeff Jones, Joe Orlando, Arnold Roth, Rich Grote, Ed Subitzky, Mara McAfee, Sam Gross, Charles Rodrigues, Buddy Hickerson, B. K. Taylor, Birney Lettick, Frank Frazetta, Boris Vallejo, Marvin Mattelson, Stan Mack, Chris Callis, John E. Barrett, Raymond Kursar and Andy Lackow. Director Tirola tells the story of its rise and fall through fresh, candid interviews with its key staff, and illustrated with hundreds of outrageous images from the magazine itself (along with never-seen interview footage from the magazine’s prime). Director Tirola stops by to talk about the supernova of comedic satire that was The Lampoon and its influential legacy.

For news and updates go to:

DRUNK STONED BRILLIANT DEAD: THE STORY OF THE NATIONAL LAMPOON opening in Los Angeles at the Nuart Theatre on October 2, and at Laemmle’s Playhouse 7 in Pasadena and Laemmle’s NoHo 7 in North Hollywood on October 9 (opens in NY and on VOD/iTunes September 25). 

Director Douglas Tirola will be doing a Q & A Friday, October 2nd and Saturday, October 3rd after the 7:30PM screenings.

“Punch-drunk and very much alive. A generous and briskly entertaining doc that traces the titular humor magazine’s lasting influence on American comedy  – a real nonfiction crowdpleaser. ” – Ben Kenigsberg, Variety

“Energetic, laugh-stuffed and very colorful – A lively, very entertaining look at the Lampoon’s unlikely empire.” – John DeFore, The Hollywood Reporter

October 1, 2015 – Becoming Bulletproof, Director Michael Barnett and Zeno Mountain Farm founder, Will Halby

Bulletproof poster I 

Download MP3 Podcast

BECOMING BULLETPROOF is the award winning inspiring story of a group of talented people with disabilities from across America who come together at Zeno Mountain Farm to take part in the making of a ambitious indie film production entitled BulletproofBulletproof is a Western, complete with authentic wardrobe, saloon brawls, showdowns at the poker table, and evil villains. It’s the fruit of ideals that two brothers and their wives put into action through an inclusive film project they run in Hollywood every year at Zeno Mountain. For them, Bulletproof isn’t about actors’ limitations, “It’s all about making an awesome movie, not a statement.” A.J. Murray, 32, from Atlanta, has cerebral palsy and plays the town’s mayor. Jeremy Vest, 28, born with Williams Syndrome, plays the film’s hero, Bulletproof Jackson. Zach Gottsagen, 29, who has Down syndrome, plays the evil Grim. Judy Moscariello, 53, who also has cerebral palsy, plays a woman shattered by her lover’s murder. Weaving between 1890s period drama and present-day action, Bulletproof’s snaking plot requires mastering lines, pushing through take after take, and showing up on time in costume. As the actors grapple with these high expectations, we see the pay off: a can-do community spirit, the genesis of a riveting film, and a personally and socially transformative experience. We learn lessons about reaching our fullest potential through artistic endeavor and hear direct from actors about overcoming their exclusion and marginalization. In this way disability becomes “our” story, of who we are or may become, rather than the story of someone else.. Founder of Zeno Mountain Farm, Will Halby and Director Michael Barnett join us for a conversation on the collective bonds between cast and crew and joy that came from their collaborative effort.

For news and updates go to:


10/2 Q&A with Director Michael Barnett, Producer Theodore James, Will Halby and cast after 7:20 PM show

10/3 Q&A with Director Michael Barnett, Will Halby and cast after 2:40PM & 7:20 PM show

10/4 Q&A with Director Michael Barnett, Will Halby and cast after 2:40 PM show

“The term “inspirational” gets bandied about a lot, but “Becoming Bulletproof” is thoroughly deserving of that tag.” – Michael Rechtshaffen, LA Times

“Barnett portrays his subjects with a sensitivity that never feels exploitative or sentimentalized, giving many of the featured players screentime to discuss their day-to-day lives or why they return year after year to Zeno.” – Monica Castillo, Village Voice

“A rare film about the disabled that shows them as the regular folks they are, and the disciplined creativity of which they’re capable.” Frank Lovece, Film International Journal

Friday, October 2, October 2, 2015 – Shout Gladi Gladi, Director Adam Friedman

shout_gladi_gladi poster 

Download MP3 Podcast

Narrated by Academy Award® winning actress Meryl Streep, SHOUT GLADI GLADI celebrates the extraordinary people who rescue African women and girls from obstetric fistula, a medical condition that can turn them into reviled outcasts. Co-directed by Adam Friedman and Iain Kennedy, and filmed in Malawi and Sierra Leone, the film spotlights the quest of Ann Gloag, the indefatigable philanthropist and former nurse who drives the movement to save these vulnerable women, and presents the patients as they tell stirring tales of their struggles and triumphs. Everything culminates with the exuberant Gladi Gladi ceremony, a singing and dancing blowout that marks the day the women return home cured. Obstetric fistula is not a disease—it is a condition caused by prolonged, obstructed childbirth. It is most prevalent in young girls like Carolynne Nikomo, who was afflicted at 12, but it has been pandemic for so long that Vanesia Laiti, a woman in her 70s, lived with it for 40 years before she recently received treatment. Some of these women’s stories have happy endings, like Carolynne, who is able to have another child, but many are not able to be fully cured, or at least not immediately. Still, all the patients encounter doctors, nurses and midwives who work around the clock to help them. For women who have been shunned by their husbands and families, this is truly life-changing. Co-director Friedman joins us for a conversation on the challenges and rewards of taking on a project where women are often threatened and reviled for a medical condition that occurs during childbirth.

For news and updates go to:

10/2 – 10/8 – one week only at Laemmle Music Hall –  Beverly Hills

Q&A at selected shows: Dr. Jeff Wilkinson & Co-Director Iain Kennedy

10/2 – 10/8 – one week only at Village East – NYC

Q&A at selected shows: co-Director Adam Friedman and special guests 

“[A] thorough, powerfully straightforward documentary …” – Anita Gates, New York Times

“[A] not-easy-to-stomach but important and eminently worthy film.” – David Noh, Film Journal International

September 25, 2015 – Prophet’s Prey, Director Amy Berg

Prophet Prey film poster I 

Download MP3 Podcast

Prophet’s Prey, the quietly terrifying new film from Oscar-nominated director Amy Berg (Deliver Us from Evil, West of Memphis) continues her trenchant investigation of patriarchal abuse couched under the protective guise of religion, and the systemic flaws in our criminal justice system. The acclaimed documentary, which debuted at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, is largely set against the deceptively bucolic scenery of the American heartland. Berg’s focus is the Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), a polygamous, unsanctioned offshoot of the Mormon Church run by the tyrannical, self-proclaimed prophet, Warren Jeffs. To cover up his sins and elude accountability, Jeff continuously moved around the country, always choosing remote, well-guarded and monitored locations. By sequestering the FLDS members in these deceptively Eden-like settings, he was able to inculcate them and bend them to his will without any threat of outside interference. Though he was placed on the FBI’s most-wanted list and, eventually, captured and sentenced to life in prison, Warren Jeffs continues to prey on the FLDS community in absentia, his power largely unchecked and unchallenged to this very day. Director Amy Berg, the critically-acclaimed, Emmy Award-winning and Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker joins us to talk about her compelling film and the destructive whims of a manipulative madman.

 For news and updates go to:

Prophet’s Prey opens on September 25 at the Arclight Cinemas in Los Angeles. Amy Berg will be at several screening at the Arclight. (6360 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028)

 Friday, 9/25, at the 7:15 screening: Dax Shepherd & Kristen Bell will be moderating. Sam Brower and Amy Berg will be on the panel.

On Sat, 9/26 at the 4:15 screening: Sam Brower and Amy Berg will be on the panel.

On Sat, 9/26 at the 7:15 screening: Henry Rollins will be moderating. Sam Brower and Amy Berg will be on the panel.

“Berg lays down a narrative of warped religious authority and patriarchal abuse every bit as chilling as her pedophile priest exposé, “Deliver Us From Evil.” – Robert Abele, LA Times

“As horror upon horror unfolds in Prophet’s Prey, Amy Berg’s shocking documentary about the mad polygamist Warren Jeffs and his followers, one may marvel, in horror, at the elaborate forms that deviancy can take.” – Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal

“One watches the film with an escalating sense of disbelief and horror, as Warren Jeffs is steadily revealed to be an even greater monster than we initially take him for. “ – Chock Bowen, Slant Magazine

A gripping, authoritative account of the myriad abuses of Warren Jeffs, the currently incarcerated leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. – Justin Chang·Variety

Brand: A Second Coming – Director Ondi Timoner

Brand Second Coming poster I 

Download MP3 Podcast

BRAND: A Second Coming chronicles actor / comedian / activist Russell Brand on his journey from addict, self-proclaimed narcissist and Hollywood star living in the fast-lane to his current, and unexpected, role as political disruptor & newfound hero to the underserved. Criticized for egomaniacal self-interest, Brand injects his madness in to the world and calls for revolution. He stays the course with an irreverent courage that inspires a new generation of activists to rise up against the ever-increasing world engorged in consumerism. Can Brand rise against the roar of criticism from the very system that built him? Does he have the fortitude, resilience and commitment to keep up the fight? Will he find true happiness which has eluded him since childhood? BRAND: A Second Coming takes audiences behind the scenes of this wildly complex man for an intimate look at what drives Russell Brand as he continues to be the consummate disruptor. BRAND: A Second Coming produced, written and directed by award-winning filmmaker Ondi Timoner (DIG!, WE LIVE IN PUBLIC) joins us to talk about getting close to this kinetic, fascinating force of nature.

For news and updates go to:

Brand: A Second Coming opening in Los Angeles:

“Along with explaining his motivation, it rescues the underlying purpose behind his freewheeling, radical mode of expression.” – Eric Kohn, Indiewire

“A thoroughly entertaining doc that serves also as a primer on Brand’s shockingly successful comedy career and an introduction to his singular personality.” – John DeFore, Hollywood Reporter

“Even if you’re cynical about Brand’s motives, or just think that he’s a bit of berk, the film convinces you of the almost alarming sincerity of his political mission …” – Alex Needham, Guardian

“Ondi Timoner delivers an engaging portrait of Russell Brand’s journey from pop celebrity to still-funny political commentator.” – Dennis Harvey, Variety

Friday, September 25, 2015 – Unbranded – Director / Co-Cinematographer Phil Baribeau

Unbranded film poster I 

Download MP3 Podcast

UNBRANDED reveals the true interdependence of man, animal and nature — their 3000-mile gauntlet through five states that is indescribable and unforgiving. Sixteen mustangs, four men, one dream: to ride border to border, Mexico to Canada, up the spine of the American West. The documentary, UNBRANDED, tracks four fresh-out-of-college buddies as they take on wild mustangs to be their trusted mounts, and set out on the adventure of a lifetime. Their wildness of spirit, in both man and horse, is quickly dwarfed by the wilderness they must navigate: a 3000-mile gauntlet through five states that is equally indescribable and unforgiving. This story of rugged independence reveals the true interdependence of man, animal and nature. As we see first-hand, Ben Masters, Jonny Fitzsimons, Thomas Glover and Ben Thamer, relied upon the incredible strength and energy of mustangs – these wild horses – who had been chosen and trained for this purpose. The group set out to inspire adoptions of the 50,000 wild horses living in holding pens in the American West and to bring attention to the fragile ecosystem and this last uninterrupted vertical stretch of public land in the West. Along the way, the support they receive from others, including a veteran horseman and cowboy poet whose life has been deeply connected to horses and the backcountry, creates a meaningful bond among the men and the animals. Director and co-cinematographer Phillip Baribeau stops by to talk about his visually stunning, emotionally charged plea for the lives of thousands of wild mustangs currently held in stifling captivity.

For news and updates on Unbranded go to:

Unbranded screenings

Audience Awards winner at Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Film Festival and Telluride Mountain Film Festival

“Unbranded is a cross between The Hangover, The Horse Whisperer and a great National Geographic nature doc, which is a combination you’ll rarely get to see.” 
– Tom Roston, POV Blog

“Visually stunning.” 
– Toronto Star

Friday, September 25, 2015 – The Man Who Saved the World – Director Peter Anthony

Man Who Saved World poster I 

Download MP3 Podcast

On September 26th, 1983, an alarm sounded to indicate that five American nuclear missiles had been launched against the Soviet Union. Russian Lt. Colonel Stanislav Petrov defied military protocol, ignoring the incoming attack that was being confirmed by all his warning systems. He followed his own sense of responsibility and declared it a false alarm. His decision spared the world a nuclear holocaust. Decades later, this forgotten hero travels to the United States to accept an award from the United Nations and finally receive acknowledgement for his historical act. The Man Who Saved the World becomes a dramatic hybrid documentary; a historical thriller, and a story of great, personal redemption. It seamlessly melds together non-fiction and narrative filmmaking depicting the actual events that took place more than thirty years ago. Stanislav Petrov reminds us how close the world came to World War III – but, he also challenges us to contemplate the true alternative to his choice: The complete annihilation of human life on earth. Featuring Kevin Costner with appearances by Walter Cronkite, Robert De Niro, Matt Damon, and Ashton Kutcher. Director / writer Peter Anthony joins us to talk about a man and an event that has been virtually unknown to the world outside a small circle of people who have long understood the impact Stanislav Petrov’s actions had on the fate of the world.

For news and updates go to:

The Man Who Saved the World screens at the Arena Theatre starting Friday, September 25.

“I was just at the right place at the right time,” Mr. Petrov says, a simple truth that becomes shocking when considering the alternative. For that alone, this account of a Cold War near miss deserves a wide audience.” – Daniel Gold, New York Times

“The Man Who Saved The World…combines elements of narrative and documentary filmmaking for a true and powerful story about (and starring, as himself) Stanislov Petrov, who actually averted a nuclear holocaust but remained unknown, until now.”
– Mitch Myers, The Hollywood Reporter

“I often get the chance to play heroes. But Stanislav is a true real-life hero.”
– Kevin Costner

Friday, September 18, 2015 – The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution

Black Panthers Vanguard film poster 

Download MP3 Podcast

Change was coming to America and the fault lines could no longer be ignored—cities were burning, Vietnam was exploding, and disputes raged over equality and civil rights. A new revolutionary culture was emerging and it sought to drastically transform the system. The Black Panther Party for Self-Defense would, for a short time, put itself at the vanguard of that change. THE BLACK PANTHERS: VANGUARD OF THE REVOLUTION is the first feature length documentary to explore the Black Panther Party, its significance to the broader American culture, its cultural and political awakening for black people, and the painful lessons wrought when a movement derails. Renown documentarian Stanley Nelson goes straight to the source, weaving a treasure trove of rare archival footage with the voices of the people who were there: police, FBI informants, journalists, white supporters and detractors, and Black Panthers who remained loyal to the party and those who left it. Featuring Kathleen Cleaver, Jamal Joseph, and many others, THE BLACK PANTHERS: VANGUARD OF THE REVOLUTION is an essential history and a vibrant chronicle of this pivotal movement that birthed a new revolutionary culture in America. THE BLACK PANTHERS: VANGUARD OF THE REVOLUTION, is the latest film from renowned documentarian Stanley Nelson (FREEDOM RIDERS, THE MURDER OF EMMETT TILL). Director / writer / producer Nelson joins us to talk about the formation of the Black Panther Party, the assassination of Panther leader Fred Hampton, the social unrest that made it a such a influential force in the struggle for political power and racial equality.

For news and updates go to:

Opening Friday September 25th at the Landmark Nuart with Director Stanley Nelson
- Friday, September 25
1:30 Q & A; 4:15 Q & A; 7:00 Q & A
- Saturday, September 26
1:30 Q & A; 4:15 Q & A; 7:00 Q & A

9/25, 1:30pm: Stanley Nelson in person

9/25, 4:15pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Michael McCarty, moderated by Prof. Joshua Bloom of UCLA’s Bunche Center for African American Studies

9/25, 7:00pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Michael McCarty, moderated by Ava DuVernay

9/26, 1:30pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Mohammad Mubarak, moderated by Denise Hamilton of BADWest

9/26, 4:15pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Mohammad Mubarak

9/26, 7:00pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Mohammad Mubarak, moderated by Prof. Melina Abdullah of Cal State LA

” Critics’ Pick. EXCELLENT. What is clear from from this sober yet electrifying film is that the power of the Panthers was rooted in their insistence – radical then, radical still – that black lives matter.”  -A.O. Scott, The New York Times

“MAGNIFICENT! A coherent picture of the messiest, most contentious radical group of a chaotic era, and arguably its most consequential.” -Stuart Klawans, The Nation

“It’s the kind of documentary that’s easy to view as distant history, except that so many of the issues the Panthers took up (police brutality, systemic poverty, healthcare, feeding children) are, sadly, not history at all.” – Jason Bailey, Flavorwire

Friday, September 18, 2015 – Peace Officer, Director Scott Christopherson and film subject William “Dub” Lawrence

Peace Officer film poster 

Download MP3 Podcast

Peace Officer is a documentary about the increasingly militarized state of American police as told through the story of ‘Dub’ Lawrence, a former sheriff who established and trained his rural state’s first SWAT team only to see that same unit kill his son-in-law in a controversial standoff 30 years later. Driven by an obsessed sense of mission, Dub uses his own investigation skills to uncover the truth in this and other recent officer-involved shootings in his community, while tackling larger questions about the changing face of peace officers nationwide. In Peace Officer, these events are contextualized within a growing national phenomenon of violent SWAT raids and governmental immunity laws gone amok in the War on Drugs. Officers both in cities and small towns like Dub’s are routinely armed with military surplus weapons and equipment, and federal incentives to use what they are given. All of this has lead to a 15,000% increase in SWAT team raids in the United States since the late 1970’s. Peace Officer follows Dub as he obsessively picks apart these cases from his unique perspective that combines the zeal of a rule-of-law detective with the grief of a victim. Co-director Scott Christopherson and film subject William “Dub” Lawrence joins us to talk about the history and ramifications of a world where military-inspired tactics and overwhelming firepower are used on people suspected of criminal activity.

For news and updates go to:

Opening on Friday, September 18th at the Nuart Theater in Los Angeles with a Q & A after the Friday and Saturday 7:30 PM screening with Director Scott Christopherson and William “Dub” Lawrence.

“The first major documentary on a topic of fast-rising public interest — the increasing militarization of U.S. police departments — “Peace Officer” turns out to be as engrossing and well crafted as it is timely” — VARIETY

“Brad Barber and Scott Christopherson’s half “The Thin Blue Line” – style crime procedural, half political study about the militarization and overreach of police, is a refreshingly objective and levelheaded documentary that’s as culturally relevant as it is expertly paced and captivating.” — INDIEWIRE

“A powerful and important film about policing tactics that have crept into everyday usage with little scrutiny” — THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER

“Scott Christopherson & Brad Barber’s “Peace Officer” is the most level-headed treatment I have seen so far in the growing debate over police use of deadly force.” — ROGEREBERT.COM

“Filmmakers Scott Christopherson and Brad Barber make Dub Lawrence the face of America’s complex crisis over the militarization of law enforcement.” – THE DAILY BEAST

A Brilliant Young Mind, Director Morgan Matthews


Download MP3 Podcast

Inspired by true events, A BRILLIANT YOUNG MIND tells the story of teenage math prodigy Nathan (Asa Butterfield), who struggles when it comes to building relationships, not least with his caring mother, Julie (Sally Hawkins). In his confusing world, Nathan finds comfort in the predictability of numbers. And when he’s taken under the wing of an unconventional and anarchic teacher (Rafe Spall), the pair forge an unusual friendship. Eventually, Nathan’s talents win him a place on the U.K.’s National team at the International Mathematics Olympiad (IMO) and the team travels to a training camp in Taiwan, under the supervision of enthusiastic squad leader Richard (Eddie Marsan). Featuring an all-star British cast, A BRILLIANT YOUNG MIND is directed by BAFTA award-winning filmmaker Morgan Matthews and photographed by Oscar-nominated cinematographer Danny Cohen. We are joined by the director Morgan Matthews (Beautiful Young Minds) for a conversation on the inherent advantages of moving from the documentary into narrative filmmaking, balancing multiple storylines and working with a remarkable cast of new and experienced actors.

For news and updates on A Brilliant Young Mind go to:

“A Brilliant Young Mind” is not the film you think it is. It’s better.” – Kenneth Turan, LA Times

“Hawkins gives a performance of remarkable grace and sensitivity.” – Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor

“[A] deeply affecting, sensitively handled British drama.” – Leslie Felperin, Hollywood Reporter

“At the core of this tender-hearted and moving British indie film is a fascinating relationship between a single mum and her autistic teenage son.” – Dave Calhoun, Time Out

“The sensitive young genius story has been done to death, but apparently there’s still room for the gentle nuance presented in “A Brilliant Young Mind.” – New York Daily News