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Los Angeles Film Festival 2016 – 'What To See'

Los Angeles Film Festival 2016 – 'What To See'


laff 2016

Popcorn, premieres and stars galore – only in LA.  Yup, for those within the Hollywood vicinity it’s once again time for the iconic ‘Los Angeles Film Festival 2016’ taking place June 1-9 at the ArcLight Cinemas (go to http://www.filmindependent.org/la-film-festival/ for all the details!) and this year’s event looks to be more interesting, diverse and satisfying than ever before.  With a whopping forty-two world premieres, fifty-eight short films and even a handful of free outdoor screenings for those with small budgets, there really is something for everyone this year.  We took a gander over the multitudes of movies in various categories and after skimming the descriptions we honed in on some flicks we think could be well worth checking out.  From a road trip to jump off a very high landmark to prank calls turned deadly, here are our 2016 fest picks of….“What To See!”

 

 

Opening Night

laff 2016

“Lowriders” – Especially for an opening night film, “Lowriders” is one of the most diverse (the flick is set in East LA!) and gutsiest selections ever (no big A-list stars in this one!) and frankly it’s got us excited.  A tale of family mending amidst the lowrider car culture – nothing gets the movie engine revving more than originality.

 

Buzz

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“Kicks” – What do you do when someone steals your dream pair of priceless Air Jordans?  Why head into Oakland and get ‘em back of course!  Mixed with a coming-of-age angle this one could kick typical movie tropes to curb.

laff 2016

“Life, Animated” – A tale of an autistic boy who can’t speak but eventually finds a way though his favorite animated Disney characters – deep drama that may not leave a dry eye in the house, anyone?

 

Limelight

laff 2016

“Lights Out” – Even though this one has a premise that screams ripe for the creepy crowd – a woman and her brother are haunted by a creature that only appears when the lights go out – it’s the inclusion of horror master James Wan as producer that has us ready to brave the darkness.

laff 2016

“The Sweet Life” – In what is the most sullen and engaging premise ever, this tale of two strangers who head on a road trip to jump off the Golden Gate Bridge has our morbid must-see meter on full alert – can’t wait.

 

US Fiction Competition

laff 2016

“My First Kiss and The People Involved” – The most engaging movie title of any flick this year, we love the fish out of water idea of this one.  Following a gal who ‘doesn’t speak, hums with the trees and cracks in the walls’ as she makes her way out of a group home find her mysterious missing caregiver is one case we’re eager to see solved.

laff 2016

“Paint It Black” – Ample actress Amber Tamblyn makes her directorial debut with a tale of a girl who ends up in a ‘twisted’ relationship with her late lover’s mom.  With a shameful shortage of female directors these days (more please!) we’re hoping to see if Amber’s ability behind the camera is as tasty as her work in front of it.

 

Documentary Competition

laff 2016 

“Company Town” – What could be a scathing and revealing doc for sure, “Company Town” focuses on former employees of a company who seem to be getting sick and dying of cancer – delving deep is the surefire sign of a decent doc.

laff 2016

“Dr. Feelgood” – A doc that examines the ethics of prescribed pain-relieving drugs feels interesting enough, but throw in the added story of a doctor sentenced to twenty-five years in prison for having written thousands of opioid prescriptions on the job and we’re thinking this is just what the memorable movie doctor ordered.

 

World Fiction Competition

laff 2016 

“London Town” – A 14-year old boy has his life changed forever when his estranged mother introduces him to the music of The Clash in 1979 London – you had us at The Clash.

laff 2016

“Lupe Under The Sun” – We’re suckers for dramas with ailing families looking to heal old wounds and this US/Mexico production of a man heading south before it’s too late could just fill our making amends movie gap.

 

LA Muse

laff 2016 

“Girl Flu” – Forget the quirky cool title.  Forget the fact that this one has Starbuck actress Katee Sackhoff and “Welcome to the Dollhouse” alum Heather Matarazzo.  Just read the films’ description – ‘Bird, a smart level-headed tween, and her immature stoner mom gracelessly navigate the arrival of Bird’s first period, which she gets on the last day of school…in front of the entire class.’  Nuff said.

laff 2016 

“No Light and No Land Anywhere” – Leaving everyday life after the death of one parent to go in search of the other who abandoned you at age three seems like a rough journey – we’ll brave the bumps.

 

Nightfall

(This whole category seems extra tasty this year so we’ll dissect each with a few short words.) 

laff 2016

“Abattoir” – Directed by Darren Lynn Bousman.  (Plus urban legends and horrific tragedies if you need more!)

laff 2016

“Beyond the Gates” – VHS Board game from hell.

laff 2016

“Don’t Hang Up” – Drunken prank call to the wrong dude.

laff 2016

“Mercy” – Estranged family bonding during a home invasion.

laff 2016

“Officer Downe” – Based on a graphic novel about ultra-violent cop.

laff 2016

“Villisca” – Kids sneak into a haunted house – at night.

 

That’s our first look film fans!  Stay tuned to our LA Film Festival 2016 coverage here at Starpulse.com and be sure to head down to the ArcLight Cinemas June 1-9 to form your own movie going opinion and support great indie film – more to come! (Go to http://www.filmindependent.org/la-film-festival/ for all the details!)



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