Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Jason previews upcoming events--SFIAAFF, Tiburon, Sonoma Valley, SF International...

Okay, Cinequest is over, including my write-ups. So it's time to look forward.

And just in time, because the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival starts tomorrow! Call it SFIAFF, call it Sfee-Ahf, or call is Asianfest (like I do), it's a great party. And it's the only one coming up I've planned for. Here's my schedule:

I know it might be dangerous to publish exactly where I'll be for the next week and a half, but if anyone attacks me, I figure I'll have learned enough Kung Fu from watching these movies I'll be able to fight them off.

By the way, notice that Cinequest films "Glory Boy Days" and "Amal" are on my schedule. That's specifically why I didn't see them at Cinequest.

If Asian film is not your thing, but you're a fan of peninsulas, the Tiburon Film Festival is going on at the exact same time (March 13-20). Ummm...obviously I won't be there, I'll be at Asianfest. But I will note the films playing there that I've seen: "Becoming John Ford", "Bomb It", "I Hate Musicals" (short), "Off the Grid: Life on the Mesa", "Personal Spectator" (short, and Cinequest award winner), "Row Hard, No Excuses", "Ruby Blue", "Salim Baba" (Oscar nominated short documentary), "Take", "The Stone Child", and "The Toll" (short). I think that's all. If I had to recommend just one of those movies to see, I'd recommend "Row Hard, No Excuses". It's an amazing story.

Well, if you still want to go to the north bay and watch movies, and you're a fan of wine, the Sonoma Valley Film Festival films " is coming up soon (April 9-13). This looks a lot like a mini-Cinequest, even down to giving Michael Keaton an award. And they're playing CinequestAmal", "The Village Barbershop", "The Art of Travel". They're also playing "Row Hard, No Excuses" (man, that film gets around) and 2007 Docfest movie "Golden Days". Good program, and I have it on good authority that there will be plenty of wine and cheese. What there won't be (probably) is me. It's a long way away, so the only way I'd go is to get a group together and rent a hotel there for the weekend. But this year, that Saturday, April 12, is the home opener of my beloved reborn San Jose Earthquakes. I simply can't miss that party, the first true Quakes tailgate in over two years. And as a result I assume I'll be too hung over to make it up for any movies on Sunday, April 13.

With that said, I'd like to make a plea to any of my readers who might be there. You see, for the screening of "The Village Barbershop" (which I totally recommend), John Ratzenberger is actually scheduled to appear. He wasn't at the Cinequest screening, and apparently director Chris Ford heard the joke about the priest and the nun from him. So if you're there, and you get a chance, can you please ask John Ratzenberger how that joke ends, and let me know?

And finally, looking waaaay into the future the big grandaddy, the SF International Film Festival starts April 24 and runs until May 8. The whole schedule isn't up yet, but they have announced the directing award (Mike Leigh) and the opening night film. Normally I don't go to opening night, because it's expensive. But this year the opening film is "The Last Mistress", directed by French director Catherine Breillat, who specializes in explicit sexuality (often female sexuality). That normally would not be quite enough to make me shell out the big money, but this movie also stars my pretend girlfriend Asia Argento. I know the price is steep, but sometimes a guy just has to spend a little on his pretend girlfriend. Otherwise, he doesn't really care and doesn't deserve to pretend to be with her.

See you at the movies!
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