Thursday, March 2, 2017

Jason goes to Cinequest--Day 2

My first day in the new Cinequest location, Redwood City. It was...sparsely attended. Here's hoping things pick up over the weekend and next week.

Anyway, I ran into my new friends from CADENCE and had a drink with them at Quinto Sol before the film. This was unnecessary, as I had drunk with them on opening night and so was already honor bound to see their film. But that's just the kind of fun people they are (they're Canadians.)

So, CADENCE is a slowly burning and surprising bloody psychological thriller. Cadence is dating famous pop star Taylor Lake (Charlie  Kerr of LOST SOLACE from Cinequest 2016.) They're trying to enjoy some private time on her family's secluded farm. Problem is, she has recurring nightmares--that sometimes become vivid waking hallucinations--of Taylor dying. Or, more specifically, of her killing Taylor (like slicing his neck with a knife when she thought they were just playing with waffle batter.) That's freaky enough, but things get worse when JJ and KC show up. They're Taylor's buddies from his recent tour, and at first they're just obnoxious. Then they get deadly. Then there's a big twist payoff at the end, which I can't reveal. But I will say it's effective, it's a good payoff, and it helps explain some of the oddities throughout the film (like how the only meal they ever seem to eat is breakfast.) And I almost want to spoil it (I won't, of course) because it probably makes a second screening even richer, when you can see the twist coming.

CADENCE plays again Friday March 3 at 9 pm in Redwood City and next Monday March 6 at 4 pm in Santana Row.

Then between films I was looking for a filmmaker to drink with, and along came the director of MENORCA. Back to Quinto Sol for a quick beer to seal the deal (and two meet his stars) before the film.

MENORCA is a very independent film, as well as a film about independence. Claire is a soccer mom. Never mine the film opens with a couple of naked men snorting coke off her ass before she shoos them out as he husband comes home. She's a soccer mom, but just can't take the dull suburban life. So she steals a minivan from another mom at her son's game, and takes off. That's not the first time she's done it. But this time is a little worse. First because she gets robbed at a motel. Second, because when she calls home both her husband and her son tell her they don't want her back. So she starts walking. She's picked up by Jenny, a cynical young woman on her way to work--the morning shift in a total dive of an "exotic dancing" bar, where the men appear to be mostly zombies who stare blankly at the stage waiting for something to happen. They make an interesting team, with different and not necessarily complementary strengths and insecurities. They're going to have a little adventure, with a bit of violence and a great deal of self-discovery. Great performances, beautiful cinematography, and made by some wonderfully friendly people (also from Canada. Hey, that's the theme of the night!)

MENORCA plays again Thursday, March 2 at 4:45 (Hey! That's like in a couple of hours! Get there now!) Saturday, March 4 at 10:35 and Friday March 10 at 4 pm, both times in Redwood City.

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