The Playlist

Slamdance Review: 'Vanishing Pearls: The Oystermen Of Pointe à la Hache' A Tale Of Disaster, Oil & Fishing

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 22, 2014 7:00 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Vanishing Pearls: The Oystermen Of Pointe à la Hache
In the aftermath of an environmental disaster, the question usually (and rightfully) turns to the environmental impact, and how the incident will affect wildlife and plants that are in the area. Less considered is the human ecosystem: the lives that exist in conjunction with nature and make a living off the gifts it bestows, while treating it with respect that comes from having been raised on that land. Granted, some disasters don't have this component, but few seen it to the degree of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, that sent an estimated 4.9 million barrels of oil into the Gulf Of Mexico. Four years later, the after-effects of that event are still being seen in the waters and shores from Florida to Louisiana. And one ecosystem ravaged by the destruction of the spill is the fishing community of Pointe à la Hache.

Slamdance Review: Faith & Forgiveness Burn In Documentary 'Little Hope Was Arson'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 19, 2014 11:04 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Little Hope Was Arson
"Forgiveness is a process," Peggy Mahfood, the wife of Pastor David Mahfood, tearfully says near the end of "Little Hope Was Arson." The documentary dives into the riveting true story about a community of East Texas congregations brought to a heart-stopping standstill in early 2010, when ten churches within a forty mile radius were burned to the ground. One of those torched was Mahfood's Tyland Baptist Church, and Peggy's reaction is one that reflects many of those affected, seeing her Christian duty to forgive tested when the sins she must absolve arrive on her doorstep both literally and spiritually. And it's just one of the intriguing thematic textures director Theo Love finds in his film, which uses the investigation into a crime as a conduit to explore the boundaries of faith.

Slamdance Review: Love Is Deadly In 'I Put A Hit On You'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 19, 2014 9:05 AM
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  • 2 Comments
I Put A Hit On You
It's your typical story: girl asks boy to dinner, girl proposes, boy turns her down, girl hires a hitman to kill him. Okay, maybe it's not so typical, but those are all of the necessary moving parts you need to know about Dane Clark and Linsey Stewart's "I Put A Hit On You," a lean comedy about a breakup that takes a very dark turn.

Slamdance Review: Fascinating Documentary 'Elliot' Tackles The Illusion Of Truth

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 17, 2014 7:15 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Elliot
Who is Elliot "White Lightning" Scott? Well, that depends on who you ask. According to the man himself, he's Canada's next (first?) Jackie Chan, an action hero waiting in the wings, with multiple awards for his marital arts prowess. But Elliot isn't waiting around for other people to make things happen for him. He's an amateur filmmaker too, the writer/director/star of films such of low-budget wonders as "Stalker And The Hero" and "They Killed My Cat" that have a minor cult following due to how courageously awful they are. But his dreams are big, and Elliot thinks his next movie, "Blood Fight," could break him into the big time, especially with a potential distributor already waiting, one that will open a possible door to the offices of Warner Bros. (eventually). But that's what Elliot says. So who is he really? With their documentary "Elliot," directors Jaret Belliveau and Matthew Bauckman intend to find out.

Exclusive: Clip From iPhone Shot Slamdance Competition Film 'I Play With The Phrase Each Other'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 13, 2014 10:45 AM
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  • 1 Comment
I Play With The Phrase Each Other
Moving away from home to the big city can be a life altering experience, and in his debut feature film, writer/director Jay Alvarez looks to be capturing and twisting that feeling into the surreal with "I Play With The Phrase Each Other," slated to premiere in competition at the Slamdance Film Festival.

Christopher Nolan Receives Inaugural Slamdance Film Festival Founder's Award

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 10, 2014 10:36 AM
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  • 1 Comment
While he's now revered as one of the most accomplished and inventive blockbuster filmmakers around, once upon a time Christopher Nolan was just another director with film canisters under his arm, hoping somebody would watch his movie. It was at the Slamdance Film Festival where he premiered his first film "Following," which gave audiences a first peel at the talent that would only get better over time. Now, the festival is giving something back to the filmmaker.

Exclusive: Learn Method Acting With Clip From Slamdance Documentary 'Elliot'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 7, 2014 2:09 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Elliot
Some of the most common advice from directors, when asked by aspiring filmmakers for any tips on breaking into the movies, is to grab a camera and go shoot something. And for years, Elliot "White Lightning" Scott has been doing just that with his low budget flick earning more attention that you might expect.

Exclusive: Never Surrender With Clip From Slamdance Comedy 'The Republic Of Rick'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 7, 2014 10:00 AM
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  • 1 Comment
The Republic Of Rick
The official state motto of Texas is "Friendship," and for Rick Launer, he's going need some helping hands when his love for his home state gets out of hand in the upcoming Slamdance Film Festival comedy, "The Republic of Rick."

Exclusive: Love Turns To Murder In Trailer For Slamdance Comedy 'I Put A Hit On You'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 6, 2014 11:16 AM
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  • 0 Comments
I Put A Hit On You
The names might not be as big, and the swag bags not nearly as bursting, but as the more rebellious cousin to the bigger Sundance Film Festival, the lineup at the Slamdance Film Festival brings with it films and filmmakers creating inventive movies with fewer resources. And that means the films tend to be infused with a more playful spirit, and that feeling is certainly evident in this exclusive trailer for "I Put A Hit On You."

Exclusive: Eerie & Surreal Trailer For Slamdance Entry 'Jug Face' Starring Sean Young

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 15, 2013 10:59 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Recent cinema has seen a small handful of movies about cults or communities -- "Martha Marcy May Marlene," "Sound Of My Voice," "The Master" among them -- but perhaps the eeriest or strangest of them all is the upcoming "Jug Face." Set to premiere at the Slamdance Film Festival, we have the first exclusive trailer for the movie, and....well, just watch it, and you'll see what we mean.

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