The Obsessive Viewer Podcast – Ep 298 – HIFF2019: Part II – Award Winners – Press Junket Interviews: House of Champions, Man Camp, Syndrome K, Moonlight Sonata, Ernie & Joe, We Shall Not Die Now, Standing Up Falling Down, Samir, and Going Attractions

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OV298 – HIFF2019: Part II – Award Winners – Press Junket Interviews: House of Champions, Man Camp, Syndrome K, Moonlight Sonata, Ernie & Joe, We Shall Not Die Now, Standing Up Falling Down, Samir, and Going Attractions

 

In part 2 of our coverage of the 28th Heartland Film Festival, I share the award winners from this year’s festival and I interview several filmmakers at the HIFF press junket!

This week’s stinger comes from my Patreon-exclusive Vlogs: HIFF2019 Vlog 3 – Always in Season (2019), Jump Shot, Whelm, Screening Mishaps – October 12, 2019

Runtime: 2:52:58 Continue reading

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The Obsessive Viewer Podcast – Ep 297 – HIFF2019: Part I – Whelm – Filmmaker and Special Guest Interviews: Brendan Fraser, A New Christmas, Philophobia, Barefoot: The Mark Baumer Story, My Beautiful Stutter, Foster Boy, and More

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OV297 – HIFF2019: Part I – Whelm – Filmmaker and Special Guest Interviews: Brendan Fraser, A New Christmas, Philophobia, Barefoot: The Mark Baumer Story, My Beautiful Stutter, Foster Boy, and More

In part 1 of our coverage of the 28th Heartland Film Festival, I review the 100% Indiana epic thriller, Whelm, and I interview several filmmakers and guests on the HIFF red carpets, including a quick chat with Brendan Fraser!

This week’s stinger comes from my Patreon-exclusive Vlogs: HIFF2019 Vlog 1 – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019), Red Carpet & More – October 10, 2019

Runtime: 2:08:13 Continue reading

HIFF2019: Ben’s Column – Go Back to China (2019)

Go Back to China (2019)

  • Narrative Feature/Official Selection
  • 96 Minutes/2019/USA
  • Comedy/Drama
  • Director: Emily Ting

Premise: When spoiled rich girl Sasha Li blows through most of her trust fund, she is cut off by her father and forced to go back to China and work for the family toy business. Continue reading

HIFF2019: Ben’s Column – International Falls (2019)

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4.5 stars

International Falls

  • Narrative Feature/Official Selection
  • 96 Minutes/2019/USA
  • Comedy/Drama
  • Director: Amber McGinnis

Premise: A woman stuck in a small, snowbound border town has dreams of doing comedy when she meets a washed up, burned out comedian with dreams of doing anything else.

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HIFF2019: Movie Review – Last Year at the Crossing (2018)

Last Year at the Crossing (2018)

  • Documentary Feature/Indiana Spotlight
  • 75 Minutes/USA/2018
  • Education
  • Director: Kathy Bruner

Premise: An alternative high school in small-town Indiana is the last, best chance for four struggling teens to earn a diploma. Their dedicated school administrator holds out hope that this is the year they can overcome their obstacles. A heartbreaking and hopeful portrait of teens trying to rise above their circumstances.

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HIFF2019: Movie Review – Man Camp (2019)

Man Camp (2019)

  • Narrative Feature/Official Selection
  • 94 Minutes/USA/2019
  • Comedy/Drama 
  • Director: Nate James Bakke

Premise: It’s Man Camp weekend, the few days every year when brothers Adam, Tim, and Kevin head to the family cabin to memorialize their dad. When they arrive to discover their mom with some new guy she apparently plans on marrying, the trip becomes a wild test to determine his worthiness.

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Ben’s Column: El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie (2019) Movie Review

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4 stars

El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie (2019)

Premise: A sequel, of sorts, to Breaking Bad following Jesse Pinkman after the events captured in the finale of Breaking Bad. Jesse is now on the run, as a massive police manhunt for him is in operation.

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HIFF2019: Movie Review – Whelm (2019)

Whelm (2019)

  • Narrative Feature/Indiana Spotlight
  • 114 Minutes/USA/2019
  • Thriller/History
  • Director: Skyler Lawson

Premise: “Whelm” is a thriller set deep in the Great Depression where two estranged brothers get tangled in a rivalry between a legendary bank robber and an eccentric young criminal. Through a series of bizarre occurrences, they find they are part of a larger historic scheme.

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HIFF2019: Movie Review – Going Attractions: The Definitive Story of the Movie Palace (2019)

3 stars

Going Attractions: The Definitive Story of the Movie Palace (2019)

  • Documentary Feature/Official Selection
  • 85 Minutes/USA, Australia/2019
  • History
  • Director: April Wright

Premise: “Going Attractions” celebrates the splendor and grandeur of the great cinemas of the United States, built when movies were the acme of entertainment and the stories were larger than life, as were the venues designed to show them.

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HIFF 2019: Ben’s Column – A Woman’s Work: The NFL’s Cheerleader Problem (2019)

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3.5 stars

A Woman’s Work: The NFL’s Cheerleader Problem (2019)

  • Documentary Feature/Official Selection
  • 81 Minutes/USA/2019
  • Directed by Yu Gu

Premise: Football and feminism collide in this documentary that follows former NFL cheerleaders battling the league to end wage theft and illegal employment practices that have persisted for 50 years. Continue reading

HIFF2019: Movie Review – Rewind (2019)

4.5 stars

Rewind (2019)

  • Documentary Feature/Official Selection
  • 87 Minutes/USA/2019
  • Drama/Social Justice
  • Director: Sasha Joseph Neulinger

Premise: Drawing upon an immense home video archive, Sasha Joseph Neulinger exposes the family secret which destroyed his world. The camera that followed his footsteps from the day he was born also captured the story of an unraveling childhood, a high-stakes court battle, and a generational reckoning.

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HIFF2019: Movie Review – Safe Spaces (2019)

4 stars

Safe Spaces (2019)

  • Narrative Feature/Official Selection
  • 92 Minutes/USA/2019
  • Comedy/Drama
  • Director: Daniel Schechter

Premise: A comedy about a New York City professor (Justin Long) who spends a week reconnecting with his family while defending his reputation over controversial behavior at his college.

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HIFF2019: Movie Review – Greener Grass (2019)

3.5 stars

Greener Grass (2019)

Premise: A deliciously twisted comedy set in a demented, timeless suburbia where every adult wears braces on their straight teeth, couples coordinate meticulously pressed outfits, and coveted family members are swapper in more ways than one in this competition for acceptance.

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The Obsessive Viewer Podcast – Ep 296 – Ad Astra – Shane Gillis v SNL, Joker and Aurora, Beautiful Boy, and Everything is Horrible and Wonderful (Harris Wittels Memoir)

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OV296 – Ad Astra – Shane Gillis v SNL, Joker and Aurora, Beautiful Boy, and Everything is Horrible and Wonderful (Harris Wittels Memoir)

In this episode, Tiny and I review Ad Astra. We also discuss some controversies surrounding Joker, the Shane Gillis/SNL fiasco, Beautiful Boy, Stephanie Wittels-Wachs’ heartbreaking memoir about her brother, Parks & Rec writer Harris Wittels.

This week’s stinger comes from our Patreon-exclusive recording: 049 – OV B-Roll – “Patre-onnn a Tangent” – Movies That Made Us Cry, The Office, Comedy Bang Bang, Heaven’s Gate Cult, and Tiny’s Confessionals – September 24, 2019

Runtime: 1:56:36 Continue reading

The Obsessive Viewer Podcast – Ep 295 – It: Chapter Two – Disney+ & Apple TV+, The Rise of Skywalker, The Mandalorian, and Star Wars Storytelling (Featuring: Robert Fekkes)

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OV295 – It: Chapter Two – Disney+ & Apple TV+, The Rise of Skywalker, The Mandalorian, and Star Wars Storytelling (Featuring: Robert Fekkes)

In this episode, Fekkes and I review It: Chapter Two. We also debate the merits of single entry franchise storytelling in the era of peak TV/storytelling, Disney+ trailers, Apple TV+, and the “Streaming Wars.”

This week’s stinger comes from our Patreon-exclusive recording: 048 – OV B-Roll – “Ve(ry)nice, Italy” – Getting Even, Fekkes’ LEGO Rebuild Status, Afternoon Beers, and Farming Simulations – September 18, 2019

Runtime: 1:48:47 Continue reading