Stinking Heaven, Director Nathan Silver

Stinking Heaven film poster I 

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Nathan Silver’s Stinking Heaven is the story of married couple Jim and Lucy) running a commune in the early 90’s for sober living out of their suburban New Jersey home. The motley members eat, bathe and work together selling homemade “health tea” out of their van. Although there’s constant bickering and plenty of fires to be put out, Jim and Lucy have managed to establish a haven for these outcasts. But the harmony is interrupted when Ann (Hannah Gross), a recovering addict and the ex-lover of one housemate, arrives. Ann’s insidious presence sends the members spiraling out of control, resulting in paranoia, drug relapse and eventually death. Director Silver has written and directed four short films and five feature films: THE BLIND (2009), EXIT ELENA (2012), SOFT IN THE HEAD (2013), UNCERTAIN TERMS (2014), and STINKING HEAVEN (2015). His films have played in festivals around the world, including Viennale, Vancouver, Melbourne, Slamdance, Sarasota, Torino, Munich, and venues including MoMA and the Film Society of Lincoln Center. Filmmaker Magazine named Silver “one of the most interesting emerging directors in U.S. indie film.” Director and writer Nathan Silver stops by for a conversation his emotionally wrenching gem of cinema-verite.

For news and updates on Stinking Heaven go to:

Stinking Heaven screens at the Areana Theatre beginning Friday December 18th go to:

“Compelling. Furiously combative.”
- Guy Lodge, Variety

“[Silver’s] densely textured images have many planes of action, which he parses with pans and zooms, revealing the volatile bonds of a group on the verge of combustion as well as the howling horrors of unremitting solitude.” – Richard, New Yorker

“In the feat of any great storyteller, especially one who thinks outside of the rules, Silver maneuvers his story and characters to emotional climaxes with profound authenticity.” – Nick Allen,

“Brimming with a putrid effervescence and an ensemble cast willing to dig deep into the filth of life, ‘Stinking Heaven’ further confirms Silver’s talent as a great conductor of chaos.”
- Ben Umstead, Twitch Film

* AMY, Director Asif Kapadia

Amy film poster 

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From BAFTA Award-winning director Asif Kapadia (SENNA), AMY tells the incredible story of six-time Grammy-winner Amy Winehouse – in her own words. Featuring extensive unseen archival footage and previously unheard tracks, this strikingly modern, moving and vital film shines a light on our culture and the world we live in today. A once-in-a-generation talent, Amy Winehouse was a musician that captured the world’s attention with her unforgettable voice and charisma. A pure jazz artist in the most authentic sense, Amy poured her heart and soul into her music, expressing personal struggles and pain through her intimate lyrics. The combination of her raw honesty and virtuosity resulted in some of the most unique and adored songs of our time. Amy became an international sensation, experiencing a meteoric rise to fame she had never sought nor expected. The relentless and invasive media attention, coupled with Amy’s troubled relationships and addictions, led her into a tragic cycle of self-destruction, resulting in her untimely death at age 27. The film invites audiences to remember and celebrate Amy as a brilliant artist while asking ourselves how it was that we watched her disappear in front of our eyes. Director Kapadia joins us for a conversation on his powerful and at times, heartbreaking documentary about a brilliant singer, songwriter and artist.

For news and updates on AMY go to:

* 2016 Academy Award nomination, Best Documentary

“It’s Amy’s words, her music, her voicemails, her home videos, her friends, her family, her tormentors, and her timeless incandescence. Look, listen and weep.” – Peter Travers, Rolling Stone

“In Kapadia’s assured and careful hands, the film becomes less a portrait of a tragic artist, whose downward spiral was exacerbated by opportunistic family members and colleagues, than a discomfiting mirror held up to her audience.” – Ann Hornaday, Washington Post

“Mr. Kapadia isn’t simply revisiting Ms. Winehouse’s life and death, but also – by pulling you in close to her, first pleasantly and then unpleasantly – telling the story of contemporary celebrity and, crucially, fandom’s cost.” – Manohla Dargis, New York Times

“Anyone with a beating heart will be forgiven for allowing it to break during this unflinching and thoughtful account of the life and death of the soul singer.” – Dave Calhoun, Time Out

Christmas, Again, director / writer / producer Charles Poekel

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For a fifth consecutive December, a heartbroken Noel returns to New York City to work the night shift at a sidewalk Christmas tree lot. Devoid of any holiday spirit, he struggles to stay awake during the long, chilly nights in his trailer, while the daytime traffic keeps him from getting any real rest. As he slowly spirals into despair, he comes to the aid of a mysterious young woman in the park. Her warming presence, matched with some colorful customers, help rescue him from self-destruction. Director, writer and producer Charles Poekel stops by for a conversation on his lyrical, redemptive film about a man finding a unique take on a holiday tale.

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Or the official Christmas Again website at:

*2016 Film Independent Spirit Awards Nominee – John Cassavetes Award*

Opens in Los Angeles at the Laemmle Noho 7 on Friday, December 11th

“Unflinching yet tender… A minor marvel of quasi-documentary discovery.” 
- Richard Brody, THE NEW YORKER -

“[A] sensitively shot slice of realism.” 
- Manohla Dargis, THE NEW YORK TIMES -

“[An] utterly likable riff on urban loneliness that never forces its themes… By merely breaking away from those clichés and carving out a charming fresh path, Poekel makes a quietly defiant statement.” 
- Eric Kohn, INDIEWIRE –

“Feels like a throwback to the kind of New York character study someone like Jerry Schatzberg (“Panic in Needle Park”) or Hal Ashby (“The Landlord”) might have dreamt up back in the ’70s.” 
- Peter Debruge, VARIETY -

“A delicate, simple film that really works… Audley does his best work to date, conveying a deepening depression that doesn’t stop this man from trying to be helpful to those around him. And Gross is a real find, completely believable in every moment as the warmth that could rescue an increasingly chilly heart.” 
- Brian Tallerico, ROGEREBERT.COM  

The Messenger – Director Su Rynard

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Su Rynard’s wide-ranging and contemplative documentary THE MESSENGER explores our deep-seated connection to birds and warns that the uncertain fate of songbirds might mirror our own. Moving from the northern reaches of the Boreal Forest to the base of Mount Ararat in Turkey to the streets of New York, THE MESSENGER brings us face-to-face with a remarkable variety of human-made perils that have devastated thrushes, warblers, orioles, tanagers, grosbeaks and many other airborne music-makers. On one level, THE MESSENGER is an engaging, visually stunning, emotional journey, one that mixes its elegiac message with hopeful notes and unique glances into the influence of songbirds on our own expressions of the soul. On another level, THE MESSENGER is the artful story about the mass depletion of songbirds on multiple continents, and about those who are working to turn the tide. In ancient times humans looked to the flight and songs of birds to protect the future. Today once again, birds have something to tell us. Director Su Rynard joins us to talk about her loving ode to nature’s minstrels.

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“…the arguments are persuasive, the message from the birds powerful, and the film a rich and satisfying call to action that is presented with some novel ideas for how to restore the ecological balance.” – New York Times

“Traveling the world to spotlight challenges and solutions, filmmaker Su Rynard never loses sight of the [songbirds’] sheer beauty, or their emotional and symbolic pull as perceived intermediaries between the earthly and spiritual.” The Hollywood Reporter

“Everything in this film is beautifully, evocatively shot, and effectively scored by the birds themselves. It’s not a film you’ll forget in a hurry, even if some of those voices are never heard again.” – Eye for Film