Roger Ebert's Fourth Annual Overlooked Film Festival slate announced

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mark Pfeiffer, Feb 23, 2002.

  1. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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    The films for this year's Roger Ebert's Overlooked Film Festival have been announced (finally!) on the website. The fourteen films currently listed are:
    Patton--(1970, dir. Franklin J. Schaffner)
    Innocence--(2000, dir. Paul Cox)
    Grand Canyon--(1991. dir. Lawrence Kasdan)
    Diamond Men--(2000, dir. Dan Cohen)
    Paperhouse--(1988, dir. Bernard Rose)
    Hyenes--(1992, dir. Djibril Diop Mambety)
    A Soldier's Daughter Never Cries--(1998, dir. James Ivory)
    Kwik Stop--(2001, dir. Michael Gilio)
    Metropolis--(1927, dir. Fritz Lang)
    Metropolis--(2001, dir. Taro Rin)
    Two Women--(1999, dir. Tahmineh Milani)
    George Washington--(2000, dir. David Gordon Green)
    Say Amen Somebody--(1982, dir. George T. Nierenberg)
    The Gleaners and I--(2000, dir. Agnes Varda)
    It looks as though Patton will be shown in 70mm. (I assume this may be the opening night film like 2001, shown in 70mm, was last year.) The Alloy Orchestra is back to provide live orchestral accompaniment for Metropolis. The festival takes place April 24-28 in Champaign, Illinois.
    I went last year and have already purchased my pass for this year. I had a great time and am looking forward to this year. (I may be looking forward to it more this year since I've seen fewer of the films.) Fifty bucks for a festival pass. More info is available at the official site www.ebertfest.com
     
  2. Edwin Pereyra

    Edwin Pereyra Producer

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    A very good slate indeed. If you are in the area and a film lover, there is no reason not to go. $50 is also a very good deal. [​IMG]
    ~Edwin
     
  3. Shane Gralaw

    Shane Gralaw Second Unit

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    Awww, man! I would LOVE to see Paperhouse on the big screen again. Not willing to fly to Chicago to do it, though. What a great slate of films! I envy those going...
     
  4. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

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    Mark, are you driving over and staying in Illinois for the whole festival? I'm thinking of coming in for one night maybe. If you are gonna be there I might try to meet you (then you can guide me around since you have the inside track on things now). [​IMG]
     
  5. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    I will be praying that this festival is during spring break.

    I'd love to see Metropolis (1927) and Patton on the big screen...
     
  6. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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    Shane,
    It is in Champaign-Urbana, not Chicago. If anything, it makes for a much lower-key atmosphere than if this were in Chicago. It was really cool last year. You can buy individual tickets for specific films, but I imagine if one is going a distance to attend (like I am--it's a five to six hour drive), then the festival pass is a better bet. (You also get to be admitted first and stay in the theater between films if you buy a festival pass.) If anyone has any questions, I may be able to answer them.
    Seth, I am staying for the whole thing. Assuming this year is anything like last, there will be a Wednesday night film (probably Patton, in my opinion), discussions Thursday and Friday starting at 9:00 a.m., films Thursday through Saturday starting at 1:00, 4:00, 7:00, and 10:00 p.m., and a Sunday screening at 1:00. After each film, there will be a discussion on stage, often with participants from the film. The theater is emptied after each film, but like I said, if you have a pass, you can stay inside or "mark" your seat. (I usually would drift outside a little, whether to get something to eat at one of the stands outside or just to get some air.)
    There usually isn't a lot of time between films, but I'm sure we could work something out. Plus, if you come for one of the later shows, maybe we could catch up with Ebert and his crew in tow at Steak & Shake. (I'm pretty sure I know where it is they go. I was just too worn out last year to even bother. My impression is that often the festival fever spills over afterward at the restaurant. Be prepared to keep late nights if you go to the whole thing.)
    All in all, I was really surprised at how accessible most of the guests are, Ebert included. He is really in his element, and there's so much love for him and what he has brought to the community. He was also more than happy to talk to festivalgoers. It is sort of a local event, but there are plenty of carpetbaggers like me who come in for it. Some of the screenings did sell out last year (2001 for sure, possibly true for Nosferatu, Jesus' Son, and A Simple Plan).
    Patrick, I'm assuming you know when your spring break is. Again the dates are April 24-28. I better quit talking about this because I'm already really excited to go to it again. [​IMG]
     
  7. Scott Weinberg

    Scott Weinberg Lead Actor

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    If I lived anywhere within a 100-mile radius of "near" Chicago, I'd be there. It's a great lineup, and I'd love to see that new Metropolis already!
     
  8. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

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    No way I could do the whole thing thanks to school.

    I might be able to do a FRI SAT thing though. I'll have to see my situation as it gets closer.
     
  9. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    How is Patton an overlooked film?
     
  10. Paul D Young

    Paul D Young Second Unit

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    Last year he showed 2001 in 70mm. He said it was an overlooked format. Perhaps that is what will happen again with Patton.
     
  11. Jarod M

    Jarod M Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I guess I'll emerge from my lengthy seclusion and post on this topic...seeing as how the festival is right in my backyard. Though Mark and I never met up, we both attended the festival last year. Mark tirelessly went to everything, while I missed a couple movies. Unless there is a snag, Patton will be in 70mm, and it is the film that I most look forward to, after having been so impressed (actually awestruck) by the 70mm presentation of 2001 last year. I'm also wondering what edit of Metropolis we'll be treated to.
     
  12. Raymond Grimmy

    Raymond Grimmy Auditioning

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    "Innocence" is NOT a good film - I have no idea what Ebert was smoking when he award that treachly and overwrought movie four stars. Heck, Paul Cox hasn't made a single decent film since "A Woman's Tale".

    The anime "Metropolis" is pretty good - some of the most dazzling visuals I've seen in a while. Plot is somewhat generic (by Japanese standards - one reason why A.I. seems more like a Japanese film than an American film), but it is eminently interesting and worth watching.
     
  13. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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    I would have preferred Innocence weren't included either since I've already seen it and had some problems with it. Not a bad film, but I wouldn't bestow it with the highest possible rating. (Opinions on Rotten Tomatoes seemed to be split between those who really admired it and those who appreciated the effort but found it less than revelatory. I'm with the latter camp.) It's his festival, though, and he can pick what he wants. I don't dread seeing it again, FWIW.

    Ebert said many times that there are different types of "overlookedness". The 70mm format is essentially overlooked, thus that's how Patton qualifies. 2001 looked unbelievably great last year in 70mm. I'm sure this will be a hot ticket.
     
  14. Greg_M

    Greg_M Screenwriter

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    If the "Patton" print is the same one screened last November at the Academy Theater - Don't Miss It! This was one of the best looking films/prints I have ever seen. The film is also one of the best. George C Scott's performance is outstanding.
     
  15. Doug D

    Doug D Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I'll stick up for INNOCENCE. It's a beautiful film, in my opinion, and its flaws are those of the overly passionate kind, which I can more easily forgive. And I don't think there's any question that it's pretty darn overlooked - it certainly deserves far more attention than any Hollywood romance from last year that comes to mind. (KATE AND LEOPOLD?)
     
  16. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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    Looks like there has already been a change. The Gleaners and I is no longer on the list while Wonder Boys now is. The schedule and potential guests are now listed on the site. For those interested the schedule (subject to change) looks as follows:
    April 24, 2002
    8:00 p.m. Patton
    April 25, 2002
    1:00 p.m. Hyenes
    4:00 p.m. George Washington
    7:00 p.m. Wonder Boys
    10:00 p.m. Grand Canyon
    April 26, 2002
    1:00 p.m. Kwik Stop
    4:00 p.m. Two Women
    7:00 p.m. Innocence
    10:00 p.m. A Soldier's Daughter Never Cries
    April 27, 2002
    1:00 p.m. Paperhouse
    4:00 p.m. Diamond Men
    7:00 p.m. Metropolis w/Alloy Orchestra
    10:00 p.m. Metropolis
    April 28, 2002
    1:00 p.m. Say Amen Somebody
     
  17. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    Will Metropolis be the newly restored version?

    I've seen screenshots of the restoration and it simply looks amazing.
     
  18. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

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    Hell, I'd SKIP school if there was anyway I could afford to be there... Unfortuneately, I don't have enough money to pay for the GAS it would take to get to Chicago. A great line-up, too[​IMG].
     
  19. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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    Just thought I'd bring this back out since the festival starts a week from today. Does anybody else plan on attending? The festival's guest list looks to be expanding nicely. Robert Forster and Kris Kristofferson are among the better known folk that will be there for part, if not all, of the festival.
     
  20. Vickie_M

    Vickie_M Producer

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    I wish he'd do this in Chicago [​IMG]
    I highly recommend the Sunday showing of Say Amen Somebody, especially since some of the singers in the film will be there. If you love gospel music, you will adore this film. If you don't know much or anything about gospel music, you will adore this film. If you hate gospel music, you will adore this film. If you're a hard-core, militant atheist (like me [​IMG] ), you will adore this film, honest! I saw it in the theater when it was first released, thanks to Ebert's review, and it's still a favorite. I saw it again recently on the big screen at the Gene Siskel Film Center, or else I'd be even more upset about missing this screening.
    Besides being a fascinating look at the history of gospel music, its focus on a few particular artists will give insights into some of the interesting people who write and sing it. Some of them are real characters too. Thomas A. Dorsey, who started out as a blues pianist and worked with legends such as Ma Rainey, Tampa Red, Sallie Martin and Kansas City Kitty, deserves a movie of his own. Here's a pretty good synopsis from:
    http://www.africanpubs.com/Apps/bios...s.asp?pic=none
    Performed as blues-style pianist in Atlanta, early 1910s; worked for a short time in steel mills of Gary, IN, c.1916; performed in local house party district, Chicago, 1919; arranged music for syncopated society bands and composed vaudeville blues numbers; published first gospel song, 1921; worked as a studio pianist and arranger for the Chicago Music Publishing Company, mid-1920s; assembled Gertrude "Ma" Rainey's back-up group "Wild Cats of Jazz" and toured as the band's pianist, 1924; published gospel numbers and began recording blues under the name "Georgia Tom" with Hudson "Tampa Red" Whittaker, 1928; performed at the National Baptist Convention, 1930; performed with singer/evangelist Theodore Frye at Ebenezer Church, Chicago, c.1930-32; became choral director of Pilgrim Baptist Church, Chicago, 1932- c.1972; teamed up with singer Sallie Martin and toured gospel music circuit, 1932; toured with Mahalia Jackson, 1939-1944; served as assistant pastor at Pilgrim Baptist and toured as lecturer, c.1940-1960s; made occasional appearances at gospel conventions, late 1970s; appeared in documentary Say Amen, Somebody, 1983.
    There's a lot more information at that URL. He was something! Very funny, with a dry sense of humor, but your eyes will well up when he tells the story of how he came to write "Precious Lord." He died in 1993, and I wish his story alone would be told. I can see it now, Will Smith could win an Academy Award playing this character. I can only picture Queen Latifah as Ma Rainey. If only I were a screenwriter...sigh.
    Anyway, Say Amen Somebody is a great documentary, and shouldn't be missed, especially since the filmmaker, George T. Nierenberg, is supposed to be there.
    Those who go, have fun and tell us all about it.
     

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