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Entries in The Garden Left Behind (3)

Tuesday
May212019

"The Garden Left Behind" is a Must-See Festival Hit

Part 3 of 3 by Nathaniel R

"The Garden Left Behind" is a festival hit

The 5th annual Bentonville Film Festival deserved more than three posts but we do what we can with our time (ICYMI - parts one and two). At any rate we will have an opportunity to revisit a few of the films when they arrive in movie theaters. But herewith the wrap up via our "Best of Fest" winner. Don't miss it when it hits a festival near you (it'll be on the circuit for at least a few more months) or your local arthouse movie theater a bit later.

THE GARDEN LEFT BEHIND
This first time feature, a trans drama from gay Brazilian director Flavio Alves, picked up its second festival Audience Award at Bentonville. The first was at SXSW. Alves is still talking with distributors and the film has sparked interest but at this writing nothing is quite nailed down yet. Given that trans stories are increasingly popular with audiences, someone really ought to bite, as there's surely an arthouse market for it...

Click to read more ...

Monday
May132019

Bentonville: Geena Davis, Jamie Brewer, and the Fabulous Freddie Mercury

Part 1 of 3 by Nathaniel R

"Include," was scrawled across every sign at the 5th annual Bentonville Film Festival which just wrapped up. As part of the logo, it was hard to miss. More noteworthy is the fact that you would have been able to hear that message loud and clear at any of the screenings and events even if you'd never seen the logo. Oscar winner Geena Davis launched the festival five years ago. It's a smart offshoot of the actresses work at the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media... and that advocacy reaches beyond gender to include film industry representation for multiple minorities: queer people, people of color, and disabled people, too.

Bentonville, sight unseen at least, is an odd locale for a film festival. That is until you see how much money that corporate sponsor WalMart, headquartered right there, has poured into the festival. The Film Experience has had the pleasure of attending several regional festivals across the years and Bentonville is definitely among the most well-funded / well-run. The attending filmmakers even got a mini-retreat before the festival began for industry networking opportunities. The town itself is a little slice of Americana with little shops, cute restaurants, a charming town square, and a lux gorgeous museum named Crystal Bridges.

Geena Davis in the house!

Crystal Bridges is where the trademark opening event "Geena and Friends" is held...

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Monday
Mar182019

The winning films from SXSW and SLO Festivals

Austin's SXSW extravaganza (it's not just films there but music and comedy festivals simultaneously) and San Luis Obispo's 25th anniversary film festivals are both a wrap. And with festival wraps come jury and audience prizes! While each year's mainstream gold rush culminating in the Oscars sometimes get snarky reactions in terms of all the back-patting of already über successful people, festival prizes are different. They can be career-making or at least significantly augmenting moments for indie filmmakers, who don't have the benefit of millions in P&A budgets or A list careers to bolster public interest. Awards are often the way artists can begin to forge a creative career. So keep an eye out on these titles and people in case they work their way around to you.

SXSW WINNERS

Saint Frances

NARRATIVE, AUDIENCE AWARDS
• Main Slate: Saint Frances (Alex Thompson) This dramedy is about a young woman who takes a job as a nanny shortly after having an abortion.
• "Headliners": Longshot (Jonathan Levine) New comedy starring Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen
• "Spotlight": The Peanut Butter Falcon (Tyler Nilson, Michael Schwartz) <-- Abe reviewed this one for us. Shia Labeouf stars...

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