Grand Budapest Hotel

grandbudapesthotelJust a quick little review here, since the film came out a month ago already. Grand Budapest Hotel, as a movie, is perfectly in sync with the elaborate and ornate structure of the actual Grand Budapest Hotel– fact, it’s a level beyond that, perhaps even with sculpted and stacked bakery confections that serve as a recurring theme and important plot point.

It’s a movie with filigree. Like all Wes Anderson movies, there’s every scene is so carefully manicured that there’s a layer of intentional artifice. Grand Budapest Hotel, the most Wes Anderson movie to date, also as more obvious camerawork than I can remember in his other movies (and him as a director known for obvious camerwork at that). Any time the camera isn’t capturing a still, perfectly symmetrical shot, it’s swinging around wildly to go from one face to another and back again.

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2014 Florida Film Festival: Opening Night, Friday, April 4

FFF2014LogoYou might say I was a little excited to attend the opening night of the Florida Film Festival. As a Cinephile passholder, I was guaranteed admission into the sold out program. Nevertheless, I arrived at the theater an hour before the film was scheduled to start. I was the first person in line. I brought a book for the wait, but didn’t read much as I was chatting with volunteers and fellow attendees and generally rubbernecking at the usual mild chaos that accompanies the start of any large event.

Half an hour before show time, the doors opened, and I was the first person to walk into the theater and choose a seat. Another passholder sat next to me and we chatted until the program started. Preliminaries included short welcome speeches by Enzian Theater and Florida Film Festival President Henry Maldonado, Orange County (Florida) Mayor Teresa Jacobs (the County is the primary public sponsor of FFF), and Maylen Dominguez, the Program Manager of the Film Production MFA at Full Sail University (the primary sponsor of FFF).

After the formalities, the lights went down, and the screen lit up.

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2014 Florida Film Festival: The Good News: My Viewing Schedule

FFF2014LogoUsually, if you ask me whether I want the good news or the bad news first, I’ll tell you I want the bad news. Bad news first means I get the opportunity to troubleshoot, and then have some of the sting taken away by the good news. Hearing the good news first means that the good news is not as sweet as it could be. In the back of my mind, I’m always wondering what the bad news is, so the good news loses its luster. And then tarnishes quickly, as I turn my attention to the bad news.

Since I’m a bad news first kind of person, I intended to post my list of films I will not be seeing before I post the list of films I will be seeing. But I needed to work out what I will be seeing first! Since I will be posting details of films I see after the fact, this good news post is mostly a list. You’ll get trailers and details after I see the films. But since I’m not going to see the films on the bad news list, I want that post to be more detailed, along the lines of what I wrote for the Shorts #1. That will take some time. So good news first, for a change.

It took me quite a long time to come up with this schedule. But this is final. I think.

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