The release of the documentary, SPLIT: A Deeper Divide couldn't be more timely. The film is a thorough investigation into the partisanship that is paralyzing American politics. Writer, director and producer Kelly Nyks has spent eight years traveling the country to ask questions that go to the heart of why our democracy has become so passionately divided. The U.S. State Department used the film to launch an Election 2012 program that introduces high school students abroad to American democracy and our political process.
The documentary, The Minister's War, tells the story of a Unitarian minister, Waitstill Sharp and his wife Martha who left Wellesley, Massachusetts to help save thousands being persecuted by the Nazis in Eastern Europe during World War II. Who were these American heroes? What drove their willingness to put the well-being of strangers over that of themselves and their family?
The 13th annual Woodstock Film Festival kicked off on Wednesday night with a screening of David Bromberg: Unsung Players. Before the festival wraps up on Sunday with their closing night film Casting By, directed by Tom Donahue, they'll have shown 130 films including 19 World Premieres, 6 US Premieres, 3 North American Premieres, 10 East Coast Premieres and 15 New York Premieres. The festival also features often sold out panels with insider views on different aspects of the art and business of film making.
Jonathan Tropper’s, This is Where I Leave You, was a breakout book that was praised by critics and landed Tropper on the New York Times Bestsellers List. Three years after publication, Tropper is back with his new novel: One Last Thing Before I Go.
The Woodstock Film Festival will present a screening of So Yong Kim's latest film, For Ellen. The screening will take place at Upstate Films in Woodstock on Saturday, August 18, 3 pm and a Q&A with actor, Paul Dano, filmmaker, So Yong Kim and producer, Jen Gatien, will follow the screening.
Movies spotlighting characters who are fiercely individualistic always have appealed to me. For after all, we live in a culture in which conformity is the norm, in which one is expected to do what one is told without asking questions. Sometimes, cinematically-speaking, those who do ask questions become heroes. Sometimes, they become victims. But their stories are more interesting to me, just so long as those stories are well-told.
These days, Greta Gerwig is all over movie screens. She recently has been seen in LOLA VERSUS, and Whit Stillman’s latest, DAMSELS IN DISTRESS, and Woody Allen’s latest, TO ROME WITH LOVE. (I must add here that, in these parts, any new Woody Allen film-- good, bad, or indifferent-- is well worth a look-see.) Anyway, what is so appealing about Greta Gerwig is her naturalistic screen presence. She is at ease in front of the camera and, once that camera rolls, it does not seem as if she is acting. She is just, well... being her character.
The Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild presents its first annual Festival of the Arts this weekend at the Bydcliffe Arts Colony and Kleinart/James Center for the Arts. The festival involves 17 arts organizations presenting a variety of arts events throughout the weekend. We learn more from Paul Green - founder of the School of Rock and now Woodstock-er.
Ballin' at the Graveyard - a documentary made by Albany filmmakers Paul Kentoffio and Basil Anastassiou and Co-Produced by Spectrum 8 owner Keith Pickard, Ballin' at the Graveyard is an intensely personal look into the society and community of pickup basketball as told by a group of hardcore ballers at Albany's Washington Park - aka, the Graveyard. It begins screening at The Spectrum this weekend.