August 1, 1966 was the day our innocence was shattered. A sniper rode the elevator to the top floor of the iconic University of Texas Tower and opened fire, holding the campus hostage for 96 minutes in what was a previously unimaginable event. TOWER combines archival footage with animated reenactments of the dramatic day, based entirely on first person testimony from witnesses, heroes and survivors in a seamless and suspenseful retelling of the tragedy.
Filmed over the course of nearly three years, the NEWTOWN filmmakers use unique access and never-before-heard testimonies to tell a story of the aftermath of December 14, 2012 in Newtown, Connecticut: the deadliest mass shooting of schoolchildren in American history. NEWTOWN documents a traumatized community fractured by grief and driven toward a sense of purpose. Joining the ranks of a growing club to which no one wants to belong, a cast of characters interconnect to weave an intimate story of community resilience. Several screenings will feature Q&A’s:
Friday October 14 7:10pm
Premiere with Filmmakers and Special Guests
Post screening Q&A with Director Kim A. Snyder, Producer Maria Cuomo Cole, and NEWTOWN subject Nicole Hockley.
Saturday October 15 7:10pm
Night with Composers and Fil Eisler
Post screening Q&A with Director Kim A. Snyder, Producer Maria Cuomo Cole, Advocate, Richard Martinez, NEWTOWN score Composer team led by Fil Eisler
Sunday October 16 2:20pm
Post screening Q&A with Director Kim A. Snyder
SATURDAY, October 8:
PHANTASM: RAVAGER director David Hartman with actors Reggie Bannister Kat Lester
SEED: The Untold Story follows passionate seed keepers protecting our 12,000-year-old food legacy. In the last century, 94% of our seed varieties have disappeared. As biotech chemical companies control the majority of our seeds, farmers, scientists, lawyers, and indigenous seed keepers fight a David and Goliath battle to defend the future of our food.
Both directors, Jon Betz and Taggart Siegel, will be doing Q & As after the 4:50, 7:20, and 10:00 pm shows Friday, September 30 and September October 1 at the MONICA FILM CENTER.
Jon Betz will be doing a Q & A after the 11:00 am show in PASADENA ON SUNDAY, OCTOBER 2.
Taggart Siegel will be doing a Q & A after the 11:00 am show in CLAREMONT ON SUNDAY, OCTOBER 2.
With humor and compassion, Silver Skies chronicles the unexpected events that occur when a group of eccentric seniors have their lives turned upside down by the sale of their beloved apartment complex.
A gripping, nonfiction psychological thriller, Robert Greene’s KATE PLAYS CHRISTINE follows actress Kate Lyn Sheil (House of Cards, The Girlfriend Experience, LISTEN UP PHILIP) as she prepares for her next role: playing Christine Chubbuck, a Florida newscaster who committed suicide live on-air in 1974. As Kate investigates Chubbuck’s story (long rumored to be the inspiration for the classic Hollywood film NETWORK), uncovering new clues and information, she becomes increasingly obsessed with her subject. Winner of a Special Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, KATE PLAYS CHRISTINE is a cinematic mystery that forces us to question everything we see and everything we’re led to believe.
KATE PLAYS CHRISTINE filmmaker Robert Greene will participate in Q&A’s after the 7 PM screenings at the NoHo 7 on Friday and Saturday, September 16 and 17. The Friday Q&A will be moderated by Sundance Documentary Film Program Director Tabitha Jackson. The Saturday Q&A will be moderated by filmmaker Jeff Malmberg (MARWENCOL) and will include Keegan DeWitt, who composed the music for KATE PLAYS CHRISTINE . These Q&A’s are sponsored by the Murray Center for Documentary Journalism.
Party animal, bad boy, ballet genius – Sergei Polunin confounds stereotypes just as his dancing defies belief. Blessed with impossible talent, he was born to be an international star but it was a destiny that nearly eluded him. After an unprecedented rise to the top, the Royal Ballet’s youngest ever principle stunned the dance world when he walked away from a seemingly unstoppable career at the age of 22. The rigors of ballet discipline and the burden of stardom drove this vulnerable young man to the brink of self-destruction. Saved – if not tamed – by his mentor Igor Zelensky, Polunin is dancing again and dazzling audiences in Russia. But now he is ready to enter a bigger stage. Urban rebel, iconoclast, airborne angel, Polunin will turn ballet, “a dying art form,” on its head.
Directed by award-winning documentarian Steven Cantor, Dancer offers a uniquely personal portrait of a most singular man and dancer. From archive footage of Polunin training at the age of six to be an Olympic gymnast, to intimate material shot by his parents, and in-depth interviews with family, friends, colleagues through to footage of Sergei’s life on and off the stage now, we witness every step of Sergei’s journey. We also interview his detractors – those who say that his training methods and preference for practicing alone, do not make him a company player. Polunin is a controversial, divisive character and he is shown in all his complexity.
The film is also a showcase for his extraordinary physical and emotional range. Dance features throughout. The centerpiece of the film, as seen through the lens of David LaChapelle, shot in Hawaii: Polunin dancing to Hozier’s song “Take Me to Church” was leaked online during the Dancer production in February 2015 and generated over 10 million YouTube views within two months.
“How do you come to terms with a life definition that was created for you? When you’re the greatest in the world, what else is there left to achieve? To live for? Twenty-five-year-old, world-renowned ballet star, Sergei Polunin, has defined his life through his art, only to question his existence at the opportunity to become legendary. Dancer is an intimate reflection of a talented and charming, but also complex and enigmatic ballet star at a vulnerable crossroads. By tracing through the memories of his life— particularly family and childhood sacrifices in destitute Ukraine— his complicated story unfolds, revealing a young man on the brink. Dancer weaves its narrative arc through archival footage, passionate dance sequences and present day verite scenes and interviews with important figures in Sergei’s life, as well as a remarkable stockpile of family photos and footage taken mostly by Sergei’s hard-driving mother, Galina. Ultimately, the film reveals a complicated, tattooed, young man, with skeletons, a sad past, and a beautiful artistic talent. As Sergei faces an uncertain future of his choosing, does he stick with dance or does he retire on top? The raw, remarkable dancer who captivates our eyes on screen and stage, will show the world where he ultimately decides to turn.”