Comments, tips, mash notes and queries to karen [at] cinecultist DOT com, or AIM us [at] elysecritic.

Entries from Cinecultist tagged with 'Tribeca Film Festival'

Some Serious Tribeca Fatigue

Holy moly, the Cinecultist is exhausted. Today was the first day in nearly a week and a half when we weren't running off to a screening for the Tribeca Film Festival. It's been a fun few weeks, especially when we were actually hanging out down in Tribeca, but now CC's ready for a break from the movies, the parties and remembering to bring our festival pass when we leave the apartment.

Here's what we saw, and a brief review:

  • Planet B-Boy - A doc about the annual break dancing competition in Germany, it's fun to see the acrobatic boogying, though it's not a strong on the history of hip hop as say Style Wars is.
  • Napoleon and Me - Is it just CC or could you also watch Monica Bellucci recite entries from the phonebook on screen? This Italian period comedy about Napoleon's exile to Elba with Daniel Auteuil as the aging dictator was cute but no revelation.
  • West 32nd - One of our favorite films from the festival, CC accosted its star John Cho at a Tribeca party to tell him so and he nicely offered to introduce us to the equally chill and friendly director Michael Kang. We interviewed him for Gothamist today and recommended the movie last week in a roundup of New York themed flicks at the fest. Hopefully it'll get picked up for distribution soon.
  • Lost in Beijing - Starring the other Tony Leung (Ka Fai, not the more famous in the US/Infernal Affairs Tony Leung Chiu Wai), this character study reminded us of a French film, but maybe because it has nudity, marital ennui, partner swapping, class divide and adultery in it.
  • Still Life - We're not (too) embarrassed to admit that CC fell asleep for about a half hour during the middle of Chinese director Jia Zhang-ke's newest. Mostly because when we woke up, CC could still follow the plot. Yeah, it moved that slowly. The cinematography of the demolished Three Gorges Dam area is totally gorgeous and the movie reminded us of Michelangelo Antonioni's Eclipse. Depending on your feelings about Antonioni, you'll see that as a recommendation or a diss.
  • Blue State - Hear our solemn vow: we will never ever ever see anything with Breckin Meyer in it again. That guy just sucks, there's no two ways about it. Cute concept (liberal guy moves to Canada after 2004 election) but Anna Paquin could do much better than slumming with the Breck.
  • The Gates - Christo and Jean-Claude are too adorable for words. While parts of this doc about the making of the 2005 art piece in Central Park does drag, the footage from the late '70s and early '80s when they first pitched the idea to the city is totally fascinating. It's so cool that the Mayles brothers have been capturing Christo and Jean-Claude's career for so long that they'd have that historical continuity. A very fitting close to the fest.
  • Purple Violets - We've long given up that Ed Burns will make an original, interesting movie but was curious to see how Selma Blair would do in a more conventional romantic comedy. We still love her, but this is not her best role, despite acting opposite the always hunky and thoughtful Patrick Wilson. One might say Burns has a rare gift for making even these two actors look bad.

It's a weird mix of movies to see we know, and bear in mind timing kept us from some screenings we intended to catch. However, Tribeca is sort of an odd, hodge podge kind of festival, so maybe our selections were fitting for the spirit of the thing.

Even Movie Lovers Have To Eat

View up Second Ave

For ages, whenever Cinecultist walked down Houston Ave past Bowery, we'd look longingly at the "Coming Soon...Whole Foods" signs. But today on the way to a morning press screening at Film Forum, we did a little happy dance on the corner because our anticipation is finally over--the Whole Foods Bowery is now open for business! Later in the day CC and our friend (and fellow Eee Vee foodie) Adriane returned for a tour. Dear god, did you know they have a whole chilled room devoted to cheese? It's called the Fromagerie, no joke. Plus, the piles of beautiful produce, the local artisanal snacks, the counter filled with sausages and a counter of pomme frites complete with a sauces menu had CC salivating and planning summer menus galore. We're talkin' about some good eatin'. After ooh-ing and ahh-ing over the ground floor, we took a break with a coffee and CC took the above camera phone shot of the view up Second Avenue from the second floor cafe. We expect to be doing quite a bit of remote blogging from that spot.

sushi on a conveyor belt!

They also have a sushi bar in that second floor cafe, which features an adorable conveyor belt. CC may try to go next week for lunch and pretend like we're Kirsten Dunst eating with Paul Bettany in Wimbledon. Silly we know, but it is a pretty awesome space that begs for romantic movie hyperbole. CC should also probably just start automatically setting aside a sizable chunk of our meager income to WF. It ain't cheap to shop there but boy, they have a great looking selection of products.

In slightly more movie related news, if you're a fellow NY movie goer, think about donating some time as a volunteer to this year's Tribeca Film Festival. You can still sign up via their website. Friends of CC who've done it in past years say it's a blast plus it's a great way to meet other local film fans while helping out the downtown fest.