film

The Incredible Rooftop Films Screening of The Incredible Jessica James

This past Tuesday night, the William Vale (111 N 12th St) hosted a screening of the fantastic new Netflix comedy The Incredible Jessica James. The event was hosted by Rooftop Films, a non-profit founded in 1997, dedicated to exposing people to new films and assisting up and coming filmmakers to produce new work.

The film stars Jessica Williams as the titular Jessica James, a young playwright in her mid 20’s navigating her emotions after a recent breakup, while keeping her spirits up amidst a slew of rejection letters from theater companies. The film follows her as she learns lessons about herself through her relationship with Boon (played by Chris O’Dowd), a recent divorcé with whom she shares a budding romance, and her students at a children’s theater company. As so many people do in their mid-20’s in New York, she starts out with a very idealistic view of where she wants to be romantically, professionally and personally, and throughout the course of the movie discovers that she is actually right where she wants to be. Continue reading

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Greenpoint Power Couple Takes the Ultimate Cross Country Road Trip

Paola Baldion and Jamie Toll.

A lot of people drive cross country from New York to California, but few people do it with a larger social and political message as a goal. On August 8th, Australian-born local street artist and Northern Territory owner Jamie Toll and his wife—Colombian immigrant, actress and filmmaker Paola Baldion—will do just that, while making a completely unique trip. For two months they will travel across America providing free DNA tests to total strangers, and then on the return leg of their journey they’ll interview the recipients of the kits about their DNA discoveries for a documentary film the couple plan to make while on the road.

Jamie and Paola conceived the trip after the success of Paola’s You Tube video, which went viral garnering 30 million hits! They will partner up with the genetic research company myHeritage DNA to shoot the documentary project I Am Migration.

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An Unquiet Night: Reel Orchestrette Live Scores Faust at Film Noir Cinema

Film Noir Cinema at night © Julie Congo
Film Noir Cinema at night © Julie Congo

When Will Malitek, the owner of Film Noir Cinema (122 Meserole Ave), turned an old Greenpoint funeral home into his gorgeous new 54-seat movie theater, he remodeled with very specific plans in mind. There’s a sizeable gap between the screen and the first row, where Will says he could have added more seats, but he wanted space to present live music.

This summer, Film Noir Cinema has launched a new series presenting silent films with live music by Reel Orchestrette, a collaboration between musicians Bradford Reed and Geoff Gersh.

Faust Film Noir Cinema July 22 2017After a sold-out screening of Nosferatu in June, Reel Orchestrette is returning to Film Noir Cinema on Saturday, July 22 at 9pm with a live score for Faust, a 1926 German silent film directed by F. W. Murnau.

These two events are only the beginning. Malitek hopes to continue the series with screenings of all the major German silent films: Metropolis, Waxworks, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari and more. And in October, he says we can expect to see a full lineup of silent horror films.

Tickets for Faust are $15 and on sale now at Film Noir Cinema (where you should also take a moment to flip through their incredible collection of films available to rent).

To find out more about the performance, we spoke with Reel Orchestrette’s Bradford Reed and Geoff Gersh. Continue reading

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Filmmakers: Nitehawk Wants Your Shorts!

Nitehawk Shorts Festival

Filmmakers! Nitehawk needs your shorts by June 25th! And the prizes are pretty big: the Festival Jury Winner receives post-production sound services from Heard City (worth $16k) and post-production coloring from Nice Shoes (worth $20k). Your short must run under 20 minutes long, and should have been completed in 2015-2017.

Full submission details here. Send in your films now!

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Brooklyn Film Festival’s 20th Anniversary Kicks Off Tomorrow Night at Wythe Hotel

Thomas Middleditch in Entanglement, Dir. Jason James
Thomas Middleditch in Entanglement, Dir. Jason James, showing at the Brooklyn Film Festival 2017

This Friday, June 2nd kicks off the 20th annual Brooklyn Film Festival, which will screen over 122 narrative features, documentaries, narrative and documentary shorts, animated and experimental films from 32 countries spread over six continents. Two of the festival’s venues are in Greenpoint: Windmill Studios NYC (300 Kingsland Ave) and the Kickstarter headquarters(58 Kent St)—also the site for the BFF Exchange—a day of free panels, and a happy hour sponsored by Stella Artois on Saturday June 10th. Continue reading

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This Season’s Outdoor Movies! ::Gets Popcorn::

DobbinSt_Rooftop_Dusk
Dobbin St’s gorgeous rooftop at sunset, via Dobbin St

Ok, so we’ve been stuck in the weather purgatory that is Spring (it’s hot/it’s cold/it’s rainy/it sucks), but it’s already time to start planning out our summer outdoor activities—because before we know it we’ll be stuck in blizzard land. In North Brooklyn we’re lucky to have three awesome options for watching movies outdoors this summer! Because who doesn’t love a good excuse to sit amongst the fireflies and watch the sun set on a blanket next to their honey (or doggie) with a pre-hot-mess Lindsey Lohan snarling on the big screen? (See Mean Girls at SummerScreen in McCarren, Wednesday July 5th).

THE SUNSET SCREENINGS — ROOFTOP MOVIES AT DOBBIN STREET
A new free monthly rooftop film series, The Sunset Screenings, kicks off May 24th and runs through September. The free movies will screen at local event space Dobbin St (64 Dobbin Street) on their 3,000 sq ft rooftop terrace. Just as the sun sets over the Manhattan skyline, the films will begin. To complement the view, the series is“city” themed, representing the world’s most iconic cities from New York to Tokyo with a carefully curated list of films. Here’s the schedule:

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Bad Film Fest: Scumbags From Outer Space, Zombies, and Ass-Bleeding

Bad Film Fest

The 5th annual Bad Film Fest, happening at art space Cloud City (85 N 1st St) on May 19-21, celebrates the dark horses of cinema and gives aspiring filmmakers of all ages and skill levels a chance to share their most absurd and experimental films, whether in the form of a “Cops”-inspired mockumentary, absurdist sci-fi or a heartfelt drama. Films to be screened include “My Ass Is Bleeding 2,” “Scumbags From Outer Space,” “Meatloaf Zombies,” and “Still Shaving After All These Beers.”

Tickets are $8, and a full schedule, with different films screening each night, can be seen here. Continue reading

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The Greenpoint Film Festival Kicks Off Tomorrow!

Greenpoint is a hub for filmmaking, boasting countless production companies and film facilities, in addition to the oft-maligned and very frequent film shoots that tend to clog our slender sidewalks and historical streets. We would argue that Greenpoint’s been culturally interesting and relevant for many years, but some have said that Girls being filmed here helped put Greenpoint on the map. Our neighborhood’s own Greenpoint Film Festival returns for its sixth year,​ from this Thursday May 4th through Sunday May 7th, presenting a diverse range of shorts and feature-length films, many with a local slant. A panel of six judges curated the fest after receiving hundreds of submissions in set categories: Narr​a​tive​, Documentary, Experimental and Animation. The GFF’s ongoing mission is to show the imperative ties between art and the public. All the screenings will be held at the Wythe Hotel Screening Room (80 Wythe Ave). Continue reading

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Inside You: A Greenpoint-Based Body-Switching Comedy

Picture this: you and bae decide to spice things up so you get down and dirty with a sex toy—a totally magical night. But, your night was actually so magic that you wake up the next day and discover you’ve switched bodies, which is simultaneously terrifying and awesome. We’ve seen body-switching in movies before (Freaky Friday, Vice Versa and The Change Up, among others), but the new film Inside You goes deeper and explores gender, sexuality and marriage while still remaining hilarious. After three years of challenging production, badass lady director Heather Fink is ready to put her latest film out into the world. Using shows and films like Louis, Girls, Obvious Child and Bridesmaids as the script’s true-to-life comedic inspiration, she shot the film right here in Greenpoint and other parts of North Brooklyn (you can see Bushwick’s Catland in the trailer, masquerading as the sex shop). Heather (a Greenpointer) not only directed the film, but she also wrote it and stars in it. We chatted with her about her filmmaking process and her love of Greenpoint.

GP: How long did the film take to make (from writing the script through production)?

Heather: I finished the script in March 2014, ran the Kickstarter in June 2014, tried to shoot in October 2014 but had the lead actress drop out the day before the shoot. We re-tooled the project, I decided to act in it myself, and we finally shot in June 2015. We locked the picture edit by January 2016, and finished sound, color, VFX, music and titles by June 2016. I applied to festivals with this cut—and waited several months to hear back, taking me into 2017. I ran out of money so I needed to work several months to afford the final pieces—the end credits sequence, and we just finished the trailer. Every step of the way I had to work till I had enough money to pay for each thing. Now, it’s paid for.

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