Tag Archive | "FLIFF"

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FLICKS: FLIFF’S grand finale, featuring Karen Allen

Posted on 16 November 2017 by LeslieM

By “Cinema” Dave


After You’re Gone is an appropriate title for the closing night film of the Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival (FLIFF) because the 32nd annual event will soon be a mere memory. From the Russian Federation, After You’re Gone features the story of a ballet dancer with a bad back who tries to understand the end of his career. Writer/director Anna Matison will be in attendance with a wrap-up party at Bailey Hall [at Broward College in Davie] featuring grilled wings, pizza and paninis.

Paninis and pasta sounds like appropriate food for the much-anticipated TOGA Party at the Villa Di Palma. FLIFF Executive Board Member Steve Savor is presenting live entertainment featuring Otis Day & The Knights from the 1978 classic comedy Animal House, starring the late John Belushi, the late John Vernon, Kevin Bacon, Peter Riegert and Karen Allen, who is in town to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Best known for her blockbuster body of work from the 1980s, Karen Allen is truly a renaissance woman. Besides owning her own fiber arts business in Barrington, Massachusetts, Allen teaches Yoga and acting. Born in southern Illinois and raised in Washington D.C., Karen was a camp counselor for special needs children during her teens. A natural writer, Allen was bitten by the acting bug after seeing a tour of the Polish Laboratory Theater in 1972. As an actress, Allen [perhaps best known for her role in Indiana Jones films] balanced her acting career between film and theater.

In theater, she found diversity of roles in classics written by William Shakespeare, August Strindberg and Tennessee Williams. Besides Patty Duke, Allen has portrayed both Helen Keller and her teacher Anne Sullivan in stage productions of Monday After the Miracle and The Miracle Worker, respectively. In the past eight years, Allen has directed theater productions in the Berkshires.

This Saturday evening, at 6:30 p.m., Allen’s cinematic directorial debut will be screened at the Savor Cinema before the TOGA party. Based on a short story by Carson McCullers, A Tree. A Rock. A Cloud is a quiet story about an old man who meets a boy at a roadside cafe. Usually published as part of Carson McCuller’s novella Ballad of the Sad Cafe, A Tree. A Rock. A Cloud. was a story Allen wanted to visualize since reading it in her early 20s.

While they never worked together, both Burt Reynolds [who received his Lifetime Achievement Award opening night of FLIFF] and Karen Allen have much in common.

Besides successful acting careers on the big screen, both have made a point of passing on their knowledge to the next generation. The Burt Reynolds Institute for Film & Theater, located in Jupiter, has been in existence for 40 years. Karen Allen is a Lifetime Member of the Actor’s Studio and is on the board of the Berkshire International Film Festival.

Given their participation at this year’s edition of FLIFF, both of their appearances have raised the cultural standards of our local community. Tickets & info: www.FLIFF.com

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FLICKS: Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival

Posted on 09 November 2017 by LeslieM

By “Cinema” Dave


With genuine emotion, Florida history and the traditional glamour that goes along with it, this edition of Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival (FLIFF2017) is shaping up to be one of the best ever. The regular venues, Savor Cinema & Cinema Paradiso Hollywood, are hosting unique themed parties that are supporting the international flavor of the film being screened. Yet, it will be the opening night gala at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel that will be talked about for many years to come.

Executive Producer Stevie Salas’ Rumble: The Indians who Rocked the World delivered. This intriguing documentary provided an entertaining history about the roots of the Blues and the birth of rock ‘n roll overturning much mainstream education taught in public schools and academic institutions.

Salas had played guitar for the Rod Stewart Tour, which became the first concert at Joe Robbie Stadium on July 3, 1988.

While posing on the red carpet with actor Graham Greene [who showed off his Lifetime Achievement Award], Burt Reynolds and Chris Osceola, Salas acknowledged the moment, saying, “I performed with Rod Stewart in the first concert in the stadium. Now, the Hard Rock owns the stadium!”

With a chorus of reporters humming “Hail to the Chief,” Burt Reynolds arrived on the Red Carpet in an oversized golf cart, referred to as a “mini TransAm.” It was a fun and light moment as the gregarious Reynolds posed with the “Rumble” crew, students from his acting school in Jupiter, and cast & crew from Dog Years, the opening night film, including Nikki Blonsky (known best from Hairspray) and local actors Todd Vittum and Amy Hoerler.

It was after the screening of his film Dog Years, when a weepy Burt Reynolds took center stage to accept his second Lifetime Achievement Award. The silence was deafening as Mr. Reynolds apologized for mistakes in his life. He talked about working with great people through the years and how many of them are no longer around. He talked about Heaven and Hell, Florida State University and his childhood friend who ended up dying in Vietnam. You can find Burt’s speech on the Cinema Dave YouTube Channel – www.youtube.com/cinemadave. For all the facets of fame and fortune, Burt stressed the importance of family, friends and coming home to Florida.

Burt’s message that had an impact on Blanche Baker, whose mom, Carroll, was the recipient of the 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award. Blanche was in town to support a short film she directed, STREETWRITE, a 24-minute musical about free speech that encompasses all forms of Broadway musicals, operetta, rock, contemporary and hip-hop.

Baker utilized the students at New York Film Academy, where she teaches.

There will be more fun this Veterans Day weekend when writer/director Ken Webb’s comedy, Serious Laundry, screens at the Sunrise Civic Center as the featured centerpiece film. ArtServe President & CEO Jaye Abbate and I will introduce the documentary, Cries From Syria this Friday, Nov. 10 at 6:15 p.m. (location TBA), which may be one of the most important films released in 2017. For schedule and showtimes for all FLIFF films, visit www.fliff.com.

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Thor: Ragnarok & FLIFF open

Posted on 02 November 2017 by LeslieM

By “Cinema” Dave


With lightening and Led Zeppelin, Thor: Ragnarok opens this weekend with full sound and fury. As part of the Marvel Comics universe, Thor 3 feels more like the levity of the Guardians of the Galaxy movie than the character seriousness of an Iron Man, Spider-Man or Captain America movie. With the inclusion of the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) and Cate Blanchett as the villainous sister Hela, Thor Ragnarok is a critic proof movie that will be on the big screen through New Year’s Day.

While sticking around for only three more weeks, The 2017 Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival (FLIFF) kicks into high gear this weekend with the annual Opening Night Party at the Seminole Hard Rock Cafe, which features Burt Reynolds and Graham Greene receiving their Lifetime Achievement Awards.

Graham Greene first came to fame with his Oscar nomination for Dances with Wolves. He has worked steadily as an ensemble player in big budgeted films like Die Hard with a Vengence, The Green Mile and The Twilight Saga: New Moon. Recently seen in the Western-Noir drama Wind River, Greene is a festival favorite and was seen in George Hickenlooper’s last movie about South Florida Casino gambling, Casino Jack, which debuted at the 2010 Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival.

Greene is expected to attend Rumble: The Indians who Rocked the World, along with Executive Producer Stevie Salas, a guitarist who wanted to share the contributions of Native Americans to rock ‘n’ roll. This documentary is presented on the big screen at the Seminole Hard Rock this Friday at 5 p.m.

Documentaries will be the strong suit of FLIFF this year and variety is the spice. Echoes will be screened at the Savor Cinema this Saturday and Cinema Paradiso Hollywood on Monday with musicians Nell Byrne & Ryan Kelly (from Celtic Thunder) in attendance. Essentially a small concert to promote their new album release, titled Echoes, this documentary features beautiful folk music and awe-inspiring visuals of Ireland.

The majority of the documentaries cover a variety of topics from fashion merchandising (Larger than life: The Kevyn Acoin Story) to forgotten mass genocide (Intent to Destroy). Both documentaries are slickly produced and will hold a viewers interest.

Cries from Syria represents documentary in its purest form. The visuals are horrible, featuring dead babies on the shoreline of the Mediterranean Sea. Told in English translation, mangled and deformed children describe the horrors of Isis on their Syrian homeland. This film fills in the bloody details of the Syrian Civil War that has taken on international proportions since 2011.

This film is a call for action, and the president listened… Having seen the slaughter of children from chemical weapons, President Trump launched 59 Tomahawk missiles last April in retaliation. It is appropriate that Cries from Syria screens Nov. 10, 2017 the first day of Veteran’s Day Weekend.


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FLICKS: Frankenstein at the library? FLIFF begins & Aida’s Secrets opens

Posted on 26 October 2017 by LeslieM

By “Cinema” Dave


The Ghost of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s Frankenstein will manifest this 2 p.m. Saturday afternoon at the Deerfield Beach Percy White Library. Besides screening a Lon Chaney monster movie (title withheld due to licensing agreements), this program will discuss Shelly’s influence on popular culture. The program will also present a video about Kenneth Strickfaden, a pioneer in steam technology.

Written by Mary W. Shelley in the early 19th Century, Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus contained elements of horror fiction, but the story was influenced by Greek mythology about creation. Through the creator’s neglect and irresponsibility, the creation causes chaos upon the status quo. Every generation has their own Frankenstein creation that becomes a monster.

During the 1930s, Boris Karloff became a household name when he portrayed the monster in a trilogy of Frankenstein movies. The Karloff Frankenstein movies were heavily influenced by European Gothic sensibilities. When Karloff stopped playing the monster at age 51, Lon Chaney Jr., Bela Lugosi and Glenn Strange portrayed the character in the 1940s. Given the events of World War II, the monster was portrayed as a mindless lumbering brute to reflect Nazi aggression.

In the 1950s, Karloff portrayed the creator in Frankenstein 1970, which featured a sappy metaphor about nuclear energy and weapons.

Those who dare to enter the auditorium at Deerfield Beach Percy White Library this Saturday afternoon will see the Frankenstein monster from a variety of perspectives. Besides other surprises, the first 25 people in attendance will receive the catalog for the 2017 Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival (FLIFF).

Speaking of FLIFF, this week’s screenings at Savor Cinema and Hollywood Paradiso will honor the 30th anniversary of the European Film Festival Awards. Many of these films made their American debut through FLIFF. Among the classic titles returning to the Broward County screens: The Full Monty, Life is Beautiful and Amelie. This week’s screenings also include the winners of the made-in-Florida competition, featuring the Lifetime Movie Channel favorite Girlfriend Killer, starring Barbie Castro.

Thor Ragnarok will be getting the most marketing buzz next week; but, this Marvel flick will be on the big screen through New Year’s Day, whereas the Opening Night Party at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel only happens once a year. So plan accordingly. For ticket information and info. on all the events, contact 954-525 FILM or visit www.fliff.com.

Aida’s Secrets opens tomorrow. This documentary deals with Post Holocaust Europe and the long term effects on families and children. Aida’s secrets are two sons who never met, who form an instant bond. One son is blind, but, like a dogged detective, he is driven to uncover the mystery of this family separation.

Have a safe and Happy Halloween. Trick or Treat!

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FLICKS: Harvey Weinstein, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women & FLIFF news

Posted on 19 October 2017 by LeslieM

By “Cinema” Dave


It has been 26 years since Anita Hill accused Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment. It was riveting television, but Hill’s claims were proven not convincing through a lack of proof. Even though Clarence Thomas became a Supreme Court Justice, responsible employers mandated “Sexual Harassment Training” for their employers in the workplace. Apparently Harvey Weinstein did not attend this training in over two decades.

As disgusting as Weinstein’s behavior is, perhaps more abhorrent is the Hollywood’s elite being so complicit. Granted Weinstein produced some groundbreaking and award-winning movies (Shakespeare in Love, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Fahrenheit 911, all of Quentin Tarantino’s flicks) and actors/actresses need the work. It is the hypocrisy of morality that has truly struck a nerve in the American heartland. This latest scandal is a reminder that one must look beyond the headline of any news story, for objective journalism died when Walter Cronkite was forced to retire 36 years ago.

A look behind the scenes is what Professor Marston and the Wonder Women is all about. It is an historical drama about the first half of the 20th Century, though the Marston family has disavowed any involvement to the plot. Much like Ed Wood and Finding Neverland, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women is a story about the creation of one’s imagination.

Psychology professor and inventor of the lie detector machine, Professor William Moulton (Luke Evans) and his wife, Elizabeth (Rebecca Hall) were renowned for his development of the DiSC Theory, which explained the behavior pattern of dominant and passive individuals. While hiring a teacher’s assistant, Olive Byrne (Bella Heathcoate), the Moulton family invites a new individual who submits to their academic ideals. The relationship between employee and employer crosses academic lines and the Moultons are expelled from academia.

Given that this firing occurred during the Roosevelt Administration, the Great Depression and the war years pay their toll of these former academic aristocrats. Elizabeth is forced to take a job as a secretary, Olive becomes a housewife and William becomes the jack of all trades. While passing a store and seeing a corset in the shop window, William has an inkling of an idea about a new comic book creation based on Rosie the Riveter, a sort of wonder woman.

For a film audience that had witnessed The Secretary and the Fifty Shades of Grey and its sequel, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women has been considered “subdued” by urban elitist critics. Writer/director Angela Robinson explores the exotic and the erotic with taste and reserve, which advances the nature of the creative relationship between the Marstons and Olive Byrne.

This film is a vacation from the ordinary film, which happens to be the motto for the Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival (FLIFF). In the build up to FLIFF (which is held Oct. 27-Nov. 19), it has been announced that character actor Graham Greene will be joining opening night festivities at the Seminole Hard Rock. Besides receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award, Greene will be supporting the documentary, Rumble: The Indians who Rocked the World, which will be a full event. Burt Reynolds and Karen Allen are among the other celebrities slated to attend this year. For more information on the festival, visit www.fliff.com.

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FLICKS: The Spirit of Krampus, Christmas movies & more

Posted on 15 December 2016 by LeslieM

flicks121516By Dave Montalbano


For that past five years at The Spooky Empire, I have observed the teamwork between a mother and her son, Cheryl A. Thayer-Blackford and her son, Jarrad Walker. These two are cosplayers, and their costumes are eye catching and unique. Upon closer inspection, one realizes that Jarrad is in a motorized vehicle, for he did not have use of his legs. Over the summer and under consultation with medical doctors, Jarrad had his legs amputated to improve the quality of his life.

Yet, as early as April, Jarrad planned to attend The Spooky Empire Ultimate Horror Weekend as the Anti-Santa Claus – Krampus. When Hurricane Matthew forced the closing of Spooky Empire in October, Jarrad was more than prepared for Spooky Empire’s Halloween for Christmas. Cheryl and Jarrad’s perseverance paid off, for Krampus won The Spooky Empire Best Exhibition Costume Contest.

Best known for providing lumps of coal in the Christmas stockings of naughty children, Krampus represents the dark side of Santa Claus. By acknowledging his own tribulation through Krampus, Jarrad provided another lesson about the importance of the human spirit rising over adversity.

Happening this week:

Moana ruled the box office for the third weekend in a row. Moana has been nominated for a Golden Globe Award, along with Moonlight, which is currently on the big screen in local theaters.

While lacking a Golden Globe nomination but with plenty marketing hype, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story opens tomorrow. Manchester by the Sea also opens tomorrow with much awards buzz. Already nominated for five Golden Globe nominations, Manchester by the Sea is on track to stay on the big screen until the Oscar ceremony in late February.

Stay-at-home holiday movies:

For those who seek a return to memory lane, there are always DVDs. Sitting on the shelf at your local library is the annual classic Miracle on 34th Street. Starring Maureen O’Hara and a very young Natalie Wood, this classic tale set in Manhattan feels as fresh today as it did when it was released 69 years ago. For his performance as Kris Kringle, Edmund Gwenn earned a Best Supporting Actor Oscar.

While lacking the special effects of Disney motion picture, March of the Wooden Soldiers does feature a live action Mickey Mouse in a supporting role. Based on a Victor Herbert operetta, Babes in Toyland, March of the Wooden Soldiers stars Stan Laurel & Oliver Hardy as toy makers who attempt to protect Little Bo Peep, the Three Little Pigs and the little old lady who lives in a shoe from the crooked man Barnaby Silas (Henry Brandon). This film is filled with much humor and charm that will surely put one in the Christmas spirit.

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FLICKS: Arrival

Posted on 01 December 2016 by LeslieM

By “Cinema” Dave


When I cover the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival, the first movie I try to see is the film with the best word of mouth. When I hosted the documentary, Conversations with Alan Ladd Jr., director Stanley Isaac expressed his admiration for Arrival, saying, “It’s always about the story.” The toughest critic I know is my big brother, who looked forward to seeing Arrival. The film lived up to his high expectation and we have been talking about this film throughout the Thanksgiving holiday.

Arrival is a classic science fiction about a problem on planet Earth. It uses the scientific method that used to be taught in middle-school science acknowledge the problem, study the problem, create a hypothesis and then proceed to apply a solution. Unlike Star Trek or Star Wars fantasy, Arrival is grounded by physical science fiction along the lines of The Day the Earth Stood Still and Contact. Fans of authors H.G. Wells, H.P. Lovecraft and Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse-Five will appreciate the Easter eggs related to the theory of time. Brush up on Einstein’s Theory of Relativity also.

We are introduced to Professor Louise Banks (Amy Adams) and her daughter. Within five minutes of screen time, we learn that the daughter dies of a rare form of Cancer and the mother grieves. Dr. Banks, a linguist expert, is then summoned by the military with the arrival of aliens from outer space. While the threat appears to be benign, the world reaction grows increasingly tense.

With the help of theoretical physicist Ian Donnelly (Jeremy Renner), Dr. Banks overcomes the language barrier and communicates with heptapods – seven limbed star creatures that look like giant squids. As the aliens and humans become more intimate with each other, Dr. Banks subconscious becomes affected in which her dreams, nightmares and reality intersect.

Arrival is a thinking person’s motion picture. To director Denis Villeneuve’s credit, he clearly expresses Arrival’s simple narrative, despite multiple character details filled with dreamlike imagery. This film demands rapt attention and it is a film best seen in the afternoon to grasp all the film’s nuances.

It is Amy Adams’ performance that acts as a conduit between academic theory and human emotion. Her grief is real, as is her initial fear of the seven limbed heptapods, who they nickname Abbott & Costello. Her growth is real and one appreciates Louise Banks’ good days when she smiles later in the picture.

In the next couple of weeks, there will be plenty of science fiction movies that will be used to sell toys, including Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Star Wars Rogue One) Arrival is a special film that will appeal to one’s head as well as their heart.

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FLICKS: Moana, Inner Workings & FLIFF wraps

Posted on 23 November 2016 by LeslieM

flicks112416By “Cinema” Dave


Moana kicks off the Thanksgiving Holiday weekend. Based on a Polynesian myth, Moana is an entertaining movie that the whole family can see together without any embarrassing moments for grandparents and grandchildren.

The legend of Maui (voiced by Dwayne Johnson) is revealed early in the movie. Maui was tasked with bringing the heart of Te Fiti gem to Mother Earth. When Maui bumbles the job, the balance of nature is upset for one thousand years.

The ocean summons young Moana (Auli’i Cravalho) to rescue Maui and return the gem. Through a series of adventures and battles with coconut pirates and giant fire monsters, Moana finds Maui and learns important life lessons.

While the musical numbers lack the strength of Frozen and other Disney Classics, Moana features a good story with a satisfying climax. The verdant visuals make Moana a good flick for holiday viewing.

Inner Workings is a delightful six-minute short subject that screens before Moana. The film introduces a protagonist who goes to work in a mundane job. When he listens to his heart, the hero changes himself and changes his world.

The Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival wrapped Sunday night and The Boy By the Sea remains the best seven minutes of festival celluloid. The India-Australia flick Lion won the best of the fest and features Nicole Kidman and David Wenham as an Australian couple who help a lost Indian boy.

Also in the fest was Stanley Isaac’s It’s about the Story – Conversations with Alan Ladd Jr., a 40-minute documentary about contemporary motion picture history. The son of a movie star, Ladd Jr. worked behind the scenes of Hollywood and green lit movies like Young Frankenstein and Star Wars. Ladd’s box office track record is amazing and, hopefully, in the next couple of weeks we will see some motion pictures that will rival Alan Ladd Jr.’s resume.

[These were just a few of the films available for viewing. Did you miss the fest? There is always next year. Plus, their headquarters at Savor Cinema in Ft. Lauderdale has movies scheduled all year long. Find out more information at www.fliff.com.]

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FLICKS: FLIFF – respecting the past & honoring the future

Posted on 17 November 2016 by LeslieM

flicks111716By “Cinema Dave”


Thus far, the best seven minutes of sustained entertainment from the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival (FLIFF) has been viewing The Boy By The Sea, a short subject from Latvia, directed by Vasily Chuprina. The premise is simple: an old, lighthouse keeper watches a boy skimming stones in the water. The sad boy tells his story and forms a new friendship with the old man. With minimal dialog (in Danish with English subtitles), The Boy By The Sea sustains its narrative, introduces interesting characters and provides visual symbolism that promotes heartfelt discussion. What Doctor Strange does with a $165 million production budget in two hours, The Boy By The Sea does in seven minutes. Kudos to Vasily Chuprina!

FLIFF wraps up this weekend, with the grand finale being held at Bailey Hall in Davie Sunday night. After an afternoon screening of Ed Wood, Best Supporting Oscar Winner Martin Landau will attend the screening of The Red Maple Leaf, a Canadian film directed by Frank D’Angelo, who also wrote the screenplay. Co-Sponsored by Steve Savor, Dr. Lucy Marrero, Janet Leavy Schwartz and Irwin Levenstein, Martin Landau will accept his Lifetime Achievement Award. On this night, the festival awards for best picture, best documentary, best short subject and other categories will be announced.

At 31 years, FLIFF has become the champion film festival of our community and has done so by respecting history, but with an eye on new trends and talent. This was never so evident than last Friday afternoon, Veteran’s Day, in which Palm Beach resident Arlene Dahl received her Lifetime Achievement Award and Ft. Lauderdale’s own Bailee Madison screened Anabelle Hooper and the Ghosts of Nantucket, the 17-year-old actress’ first producer credit.

A veteran of Hollywood’s Golden Age, Arlene Dahl shared how her leading men were too serious (John Payne) and villainous character actors (Ted de Corsia) had a wonderful sense of humor. From her Norwegian mother, Dahl learned the value of hard work and to live a simple life. While being interviewed by Brooklyn college film professor Foster Hirsch, Dahl shared her first meeting with Clark Gable at a prestigious MGM gala. Intimidated at first by meeting this popular box office star, the two shared a wonderful evening discussing fly fishing. To see Dahl’s full interview, visit my YouTube Channel, www.YouTube.com/CinemaDave.

After flying in from Toronto, where she is shooting The Good Witch for the Hallmark Channel, Bailee Madison accepted her Young Filmmaker’s Award at the Savor Cinema. While generously sharing the spotlight with her Annabelle Hooper cast and crew, Bailee acknowledged each individual who wanted to meet her, pose with her or get an autograph. Since her last appearance at FLIFF four years ago, Bailee acknowledged receiving more attention and flash photography, given her body of work on the big screen, cable and broadcast television. She acknowledges how good it is to return home to South Florida.

The box office juggernaut for the Harry Potter prequel kicks off this weekend with J.K.Rowling’s, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which is likely to have a trailer for Kong: Skull Island. The next week, the holiday Disney animated movie Moana opens featuring the voice of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, which is likely to have a trailer for Beauty and the Beast, which stars an adult Emma Watson from the Harry Potter movies.

Given the recent election cycle, we have survived some “beastly” days. However let us take the time to enjoy the “beauty” of the upcoming holidays. As I learned from The Boy By The Sea, beauty is where you find it.

If you are looking for a few treasures for the holidays, then check out the FLIFF Silent Auction at www.32auctions.com/FLIFF2016.

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FLICKS: Doctor Strange & FLIFF

Posted on 10 November 2016 by LeslieM

ficks111016By “Cinema” Dave


Photos by Rachel Galvin

With very little surprise, Doctor Strange dominated the weekend with $84 million in box-office gross. It is typical Marvel comic-book entertainment as we are introduced to neurosurgeon Stephen Strange, M.D. After losing his hands to paralysis in a car accident, Doctor Strange goes to Nepal for alternative medicine.

While healing, Strange learns about the invisible universe that was introduced briefly in last year’s Marvel epic, Ant-Man. With metaphysical carny tricks added to his medicine bag, he battles a villain (Mads Mikkelsen). While there is no rush to go see this Saturday matinee flick, visiting the astral plane with Doctor Strange provides alternative entertainment.

The second week of Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival (FLIFF) also provides alternative cinema to please both young and old this Friday, Nov. 11 at Savor Cinema (503 SE 6 St., Ft. Lauderdale)

2 p.m.: Brooklyn College film professor Foster Hirsch will conduct an interview with Arlene Dahl, a veteran Warner Brothers actress who performed in both crime noir and musicals.

4:30 p.m.: Bailee Madison returns to Fort Lauderdale to screen Annabelle Hooper and the Ghosts of Nantucket, Bailee’s first producer credit. Stick around for a pizza party afterward.

Tomorrow Ever After makes its east coast premier Friday, Nov. 18 at the Cinema Paradiso Hollywood (2008 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood) and on Saturday, Nov. 19 at the Savor Cinema. A time traveler from the 26th century (Ela Thier, who also wrote and directed) arrives in Manhattan during the historical period known as “The Great Despair,” which happens to be the year 2015.

FLIFF is putting an emphasis upon foreign movies this year. Movies from the U.K., Caribbean, Chili and Israel will be the focus this weekend at Savor and Hollywood Cinemas. For ticket prices and times, contact 954-525 FILM or visit www.fliff.com.

Unrelated to FLIFF, Silverspot Cinemas in Coconut Creek has invited this film columnist to host a series of “Spaghetti Westerns” starring Clint Eastwood. On Monday. Nov. 14, enjoy a spaghetti dinner complete with wine at 6 p.m. followed by the film A Fistful of Dollars, directed by Sergio Leone with a classic musical score by Ennio Morricone at 7 p.m.

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