Whistler Film Festival 2019: Kristina Mileska on THE BEAR AND THE BEEKEEPER – Jennifer Merin interviews

In Kristina Mileska’s The Bear and the Beekeeper, an ageing beekeeper tries to keep a pesky predator away from his beehives in order to keep the memory of his loved one alive. The dialogue-free short The Bear and the Beekeeper explores themes of loss and memory with a sense of whimsy and lightness. The short film has been nominated for an. AWFJ EDA Award at Whistler Film Festival 2019.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK November 22, 2019: SHOOTING THE MAFIA

Anyone who’s ever winced at the mob violence and manipulation in The Godfather will quickly realize it has nothing on the real-life crimes of the Italian Mafia, as captured through Letitzia Battaglia’s talented eye and focused lens. The fearless photographer is the subject of Kim Longinotto’s fascinating documentary Shooting the Mafia.

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LOUISIANA FILM PRIZE: 20 Shorts Compete for $50,000 – Jennifer Merin reports

Now readying for its ninth edition, the Louisiana Film Prize is calling for submissions for its 2020 competition. The Unique among 8,500 film festivals staged annually across North America, the LFP is a year-long process involving filmmakers in production of a short film to be entered into competition for a $50,000 cash award, the world’s largest short film award, and the only one requiring a film produced specifically for the competition.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK November 15, 2019: ATLANTICS

Dreamy and full of unexpected twists, Mati Diop’s narrative debut Atlantics — Grand Jury Prize winner at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival — is simultaneously a tender tale of star-crossed lovers, an eerie ghost story, and a gritty procedural. That unusual combination keeps it surprising and engaging throughout and underlines writer/director Diop’s notable talent.

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Whistler Film Festival: 2019 EDA Award Nominees and AWFJ Juries – Jennifer Merin reports

For the seventh consecutive year, the Alliance of Women Film Journalists has had the honor to partner with Whistler Film Festival to recognize women filmmakers with presentation of EDA Awards for Best Female-Directed Feature Film and Best Female-Directed Short at the 2019 festival, held in Whistler from December 4 to 8, 2019.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK November 8, 2019 – HONEY BOY

Part coming-of-age drama, part father-son story, and part therapy, “Honey Boy” is a compelling take on actor Shia LaBeouf’s troubled childhood and controversial behavior as a Hollywood star. Working from LaBeouf’s own script, director Alma Har’el builds sympathy for both LaBeouf and his father without excusing either for their actions.

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Martin Scorsese on THE IRISHMAN, Crime and Corruption in His Cinema – Jennifer Merin interviews

Martin Scorsese’s latest film, The Irishman, releasing November 1 in theaters and available on Netflix on November 27, is the director’s eighth foray into the world of crime and corruption. Perhaps because The Irishman’s truth-based narrative is about relatively recent events that actually changed the course of history, the engrossingly complex, superbly structured and thoroughly gripping crime thriller serves not only as an intense decades-spanning character study, but also as a provocative sociopolitical primer. In our present era’s predicament about finding truth in media, this is a history-making film about historical events. Read what Scorsese has to say about truth in narrative.

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Louisiana Film Prize: Jaya McSharma on the Making and Meaning of BEST IN SHOW – Jennifer Merin interviews

Jaya McSharma wrote, produced, co-directed and starred in Best in Show, one of 20 short films selected to compete in the 2019 Louisiana Film Prize, a unique film festival that awards a cash prize of $50,000 for the film deemed best by audience members and by film industry professionals. The dramady, a searing satire of the fashion industry, follows an unconventional fashion show model whose appearance is deemed no longer fit for the runway. Her rebellion is an inspiration to all who reject the torture of trying to stick to superficial standards of size, shape and beauty.

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63 UP – Review by Jennifer Merin

For those who’ve followed filmmaker Michael Apted’s entire UP Series, it’s a treat to catch up with the subjects’ latest developments in 63 UP, the eighth and likely final episode in the UP Series, Apted refers to the series as an exploration of the British class system, and asks all of his subjects whether they think the original premise for the series — “give me a child at the age of seven and I’ll show you the man” — is true. The now familiar participating women and men give responses that are varied, authentic and provocative.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK November 1, 2019: PARADISE HILLS

Alice Waddington’s lush, imaginative directorial debut builds such a convincing dystopian world that you’d be forgiven for assuming it must be based on some intricate, “Hunger Games”-like series of YA novels. But Brian DeLeeuw and Nacho Vigalondo’s tale of privileged young women at a very unusual “finishing school” called Paradise Hills is a true original.

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