All posts by Jammie Jam Jamster

BFI Flare 2018: Part 2

2018 BFI Flare: London LGBT Film Festival began on
Wednesday 21 March, and ends on Sunday 1 April, and there is plenty to see at this year’s BFI Flare Film Festival. Here are our selections. To find out more and to attend the festival, just click on the links to the BFI website.

Have a look at some of the films in BFI Flare 2018: Part 1
This week you can enjoy:

Monday 26 March

20:30
The Wound
“Kwanda, an edgy city boy, has been taken back to his father’s rural village where he is to undergo the painful initiation ritual that will ‘turn’ him into a man.”

This has to be one of my highlights of the festival. I saw this film at the London Film Festival. Tradition clashes with modern living, with a world of secrets. Absolutely fantastic.

Tuesday 27 March

20:30
SHORTS: Rewind the Film
Queer histories and queer futures are reconfigured in this collection of experimental short films, showcasing the best in contemporary artists’ film and video.

FILM 8 – Something Said
As history is remembered, the body is reimagined.

Thursday 29 March

20:40 (also Friday 30 March, 16:10)
SHORTS: Revelate
You must decide what side of reality you stand on in these stories that revel in the dark, the dream-like and the bizarre.

FILM 3 – A Drop of Sun Under the Earth
A man known as Little Bear lives with his father in a run-down Rio slum, but everything changes when he gets a job with a rich older man and becomes obsessed with a Copacabana rent boy.

Friday 30 March

15:45 (also Saturday 31 March, 16:15)
SHORTS: Dangerous Atmospheres
Sometimes relationships happen in spite of the dangers. Four longer shorts with the power of mini-features explore different situations where things don’t turn out as anyone expected.

FILM 4 – Ursinho
A man known as Little Bear lives with his father in a run-down Rio slum, but everything changes when he gets a job with a rich older man and becomes obsessed with a Copacabana rent boy.

18:20
SHORTS: You Can’t Always Get What You Want
Life and all its complexities are laid bare in these emotionally-charged short films.

FILM 3 – Y
Laura finds more than she bargained for when she steals from the wrong woman.

18:15 (also Saturday 31 March, 16:20)
Southern Pride
Malcolm Ingram’s spiritual companion piece to his acclaimed documentary Small Town Gay Bar (BFI Flare 2007), Southern Pride offers a fascinating insight into LGBTQ+ rights in a post-Trump landscape. Headstrong bar owner Lynn Koval, alongside a team of friends (and her own Republican-voting sister), endeavour against all odds to organise a Pride march in her local town. Meanwhile, in another part of the state, organisers of a Black Pride celebration are simultaneously striving to make a difference, despite the numerous setbacks that stand in their way. Emotionally textured and politically prescient, this inspiring tale of triumph over adversity addresses themes of leadership, struggle, division, community and race relations, ultimately offering a sense of hope in a world that can too often appear so hopeless.

20:15 (also Saturday 31 March, 20:15)
Good Manners (As Boas maneiras)
Clara, a care worker living on the outskirts of São Paulo, accepts the position of live-in nanny to the as-yet unborn child of a wealthy single woman named Ana. The two women immediately develop a strong bond, but Ana’s increasingly strange behaviour hints at a deep, dark secret.

20:30 (also Saturday 31 March, 11:30)
Hard Paint
Moody, disturbed loner Pedro lives in the depressed harbour town of Porto Alegre. He scrapes together a living as webcam performer NeonBoy and erotic displays of his naked body smeared with neon paint attract a devoted following. When he discovers another male performer, Leon, has copied his act under the pseudonym Boy25, it prompts a radical change to Pedro’s performance and life.

Saturday 31 March

13:20
SHORTS: Wanting, Needing, Waiting
Whilst travelling down that rocky road toward true love, a disparate group of men face some difficult decisions in this heart-rending collection of short films.

FILM 2 – The Things You Think I’m Thinking
A burn survivor goes on a date for the first time since his life-changing accident.

Sunday 1 April

18:10
SHORTS: Brown is the Warmest Colour
Insightful shorts charting the queer Asian experience, and the importance of love, relationships and solidarity.

FILM 5 – More Love. Less Pre-Packed Bullshit
It is easy to overlook the simple extension of love to other people.

The festival runs until 1st April 2018, and there’s a lot more to see,
Sunday 1 April is a chance to catch up on some of the films shown earlier in the festival

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BFI Flare 2018: Part 1

2018 BFI Flare: London LGBT Film Festival began on
Wednesday 21 March, and ends on Sunday 1 April, and there is plenty to see at this year’s BFI Flare Film Festival. Here are our selections. To find out more and to attend the festival, just click on the links to the BFI website.

Have a look at more films to enjoy next week in BFI Flare 2018: Part 2. This weekend, you can enjoy:

Friday 23 March

12:00-17:00
Rise: QTIPOC Representation and Visibility in Film
“Elevating the narratives of QTIPOC (queer, transgender and intersex people of colour) characters, this one-day series of free events will provide a platform to examine the importance of inclusion, both on and off screen, whilst inspiring a generation of directors, screenwriters, filmmakers and producers to develop work which best reflects their stories. Featuring a programme of intimate workshops and panel discussions with established industry professionals, this symposium seeks to affirm to the power of film as a disruptive medium that can broaden the lens and draw attention to the nuanced experiences of QTIPOC people.“

20:30 (Also Saturday 24 March, 15:55)
As part of the feature film, Paternal Rites you can catch the short film Happy Birthday, Marsha!
“Rare archive footage is used to imagine the night Marsha P Johnson instigated the Stonewall riots.”

20:45 (Also, Sunday 25 March, 16:10; Saturday 31 March, 18:30; Sunday 01 April, 20:20)
Alaska is a Drag
Leo and his sister Tristan work menial jobs in a fish cannery, but have big dreams of ditching the fish, becoming stars and finding their mother.
Also, as part of this screening, you can see Wood.
“A young man is confronted by his own feelings when the gay man he attacked appears at his boxing gym.”

20:50 (also, Saturday 24 March, 20:30)
The Carmilla Movie
“Everyone’s favourite lesbian vampire is back, in a feature length sequel to the hit web series. And this time around the stakes are much higher.”

 

Saturday 24 March

11:15 (also Sunday 25 March, 18:20)
SHORTS: Relationship Lessons
Whether you’re hooking up online or in a long-term relationship, things don’t always develop the way we would like. There’s tragedy and high comedy here. You’ve been warned!

As part of this stream of short films, look out for:
FILM 1 – Boyfriend
It all seems too easy. You’ve met the perfect guy and he seems wonderful. There’s just one small problem…

FILM 2 – Skai Blue
Simon, a gay refugee fleeing from homophobic abuse in Cameroon, meets Tom on a dating website in a small town in Belgium. Love can’t solve everything, but it’s a start.

20:20; (also, Sunday 25 March, 15:20)
Sidney & Friends
“Scottish filmmaker Tristan Aitchison visited Kenya in 2013. A chance meeting with an activist revealed an underground network of intersex and trans people that wanted their voices heard. Kenya has various discriminatory laws affecting LGBTQ+ people, although the situation has gradually improved over the last five years. Welcomed into their community, Aitchison recorded six young people who bravely shared their candid stories over a long period, revealing the realities of life as a targeted minority.”

Also, as part of this screening:
Half a Life
Short documentary animates a startling episode in the life of a gay rights activist in Egypt.

Clash
A critique on the lack of BAME representation in UK television and film, highlighting inequality and the absence of media engagement with Britain’s colonial past.

Sunday 25 March

13:30
SHORTS: Fighters of Demons, Makers of Cakes: D/deaf and Disabled Queer and Trans Shorts
+ Q&A with Michael Achtman, Sandra Alland, David Ellington, Matthew Hellett, Lynn Stewart-Taylor and Bea Webster.
An unconventional and often fantastical examination of LGBTQ+ disabled, neurodiverse, chronically ill and/or D/deaf lives. Packed with experimental docs, dance, animation, poetry, drama and comedy. Plus zombies.

FILM 6 – The Deaf Vs the Dead
When the zombie apocalypse breaks out in Los Angeles, an out deaf man must find a way to survive.

FILM 7 – Awake
Chronically ill Anna is visited by Doreen, a door-to-door proselytiser who invites herself in. Two blind actors. An existential comedy.

FILM 10 – Atlantic is a Sea of Bones
Through everyday acts of refusal, performer Egyptt LaBeija confronts legacies of violence, intimately shaped by HIV/AIDS, against Black queer and trans bodies in this otherworldy film.

18:30 (also, Monday 26 March; 20:30)
The Wound
“Kwanda, an edgy city boy, has been taken back to his father’s rural village where he is to undergo the painful initiation ritual that will ‘turn’ him into a man.”

This has to be one of my highlights of the festival. I saw this film at the London Film Festival. Tradition clashes with modern living, with a world of secrets. Absolutely fantastic.

The festival runs until 1st April 2018, and there’s a lot more to see,
I’ll share a few more over the next few days.

Best Original Song – 2018 Oscar Nominees | 90th Academy Awards

The 90th Academy Awards | 2018, Sunday, March 4, 2018 – Honoring movies released in 2017

These are the nominees for the Best Original Song

  • “Mighty River” from Mudbound – Music and Lyrics by Mary J. Blige, Raphael Saadiq and Taura Stinson
  • “Mystery of Love” from Call Me by Your Name – Music and Lyrics by Sufjan Stevens
  • “Remember Me” from Coco – Music and Lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
  • “Stand Up for Something” from Marshall – Music by Diane Warren; Lyrics by Common and Diane Warren
  • “This Is Me” from The Greatest Showman – Music and Lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul

Listen to them here. Which one would you make the winner in this category?

Best Original Song - Oscars 2018

https://open.spotify.com/embed/user/jammiemedia/playlist/4ci1dwaiwSW2QntJzXTmju

Films to see at BFI’s 61st London Film Festival 2017

If you haven’t managed to get down to the BFIs 61st London Film Festival yet, there are still plenty of films to see.

The festival runs from the 4th to the 15th October 2017.

Available  feature films include those set in:

  • Congo (Félicité, Makala), Egypt (The Nile Hilton Incident, Sheikh Jackson), South Africa (The Forgiven, Five Fingers for Marseilles / Menoana e Mehlano ea Marseilles, Liyana, The Wound), Guinea-Bissau (Spell Reel), Mauritania (Oh, Sun! /Soleil Ô), and Zambia (I Am Not a Witch), plus (Untitled),
  • Brazil (Araby /Arábia, Good Manners /As Boas Maneiras),
  • France (Chateau /La Vie de château),
  • Italy (A Ciambra),
  • UK (Dead the Ends, The L-Shaped Room), and
  • USA (The Final Year, Last Flag Flying, Mutafukaz, Gemini, The Shape of Water, Small Town Crime, Saturday Church, G Funk).
Last Flag Flying – 9,10 Oct

Road trip reunion, w/ Laurence Fishburne

Gemini – 9,11 Oct

A crime thriller set in LA with Zoë Kravitz and Lola Kirke

The Wound – 9,10,12 Oct

Right of passage boy to man ritual worth seeing

Félicité – 9 Oct

Kinshasa singer, Félicité, must raise money for an urgent operation for her son

Spell Reel – 9 Oct

Documentary following the preservation of works by filmmakers who documented Guinea-Bissau’s war of independence from Portugal

Liyana – 9 Oct

Thandie Newton produces Liyana, a beautiful story created by children in a Swaziland orphanage. Animated by Shofela Coker

Mutafukaz – 9 Oct

Dystopian hip-hop sci-fi animation

The Final Year – 9 Oct

The Obama administration’s last year in office

Chateau (La Vie de château) – 10,13 Oct

Life around the African hair salons near Château d’Eau metro station in Paris and Charles, one of the hustlers that get clients for the hairdressers

The Shape of Water – 10,11,13 Oct

Sci-fi aquatic creature US laboratory with Octavia Spencer

Makala – 10,12 Oct

Documentary following Hard working miner and his family life

Dead the Ends – 10,15 Oct

Experimental film, a man has been sent back into the past to rescue the future. Includes the 2011 London riots

Good Manners (As Boas Maneiras) – 11,12,13 Oct

Creative and subversive

Small Town Crime – 11,12,14 Oct

Former cop decides to embark on his own investigation when a woman’s body is found. Octavia Spencer plays the cop’s sister

The Nile Hilton Incident – 11,12 Oct

A woman is found murdered in Cairo’s Nile Hilton Hotel

Untitled – 11,13 Oct

Journeying through the nature of labour in Africa, the Balkans and Italy, Michael Glawogger’s unfinished documentary

Sheikh Jackson – 12 Oct

Islamist preacher experiences a crisis of faith following the death of Michael Jackson

I Am Not a Witch – 12,14,15 Oct

Rungano Nyoni’s, I am Not  Witch, where Shula must join a travelling witch camp or become a goat

Oh, Sun! (Soleil Ô) – 12,14 Oct

This 1970s film follows a West African’s experience of racism and immigration on moving to Paris to make a new life for himself

The Forgiven – 13,14,15 Oct

Forest Whitaker plays Desmond Tutu in this film about South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Committee

A Ciambra – 13,14 Oct

Set in Calabria in Italy, a coming of age story of Romani, Pio

Araby (Arábia) – 13,15 Oct

Teenager André’s journey through different towns and cities of Brazil

Saturday Church – 14 Oct

Musical of a young boy who wants to wear women’s clothes, struggling and finding a supportive group of friends

The L-Shaped Room – 14,15 Oct

1962, pregnant French woman moves to Notting Hill and meets a mix of other outsiders at her lodgings

G Funk – 14,15 Oct

Warren G, Snoop Dogg, Nate Dogg, Dr Dre, and Death Row Records, this is the story of hip-hops move from underground to global

Five Fingers for Marseilles (Menoana e Mehlano ea Marseilles) – 15 Oct

A western styled film where Five young friends decide to defend their town, 20 years later, things have changed

 

Also, you can catch short films in the following short film strands:

–~–

 

Borg vs McEnroe

Running time: 100 mins
Release Date: 22nd September 2017
Certificate: 15
Director: Janus Metz
Cast: Sverrir Gudnason, Shia LaBeouf, Stellan Skarsgard, Tuva Novotny, David Bamber, Ian Blackman, Robert Emms, Leo Borg


Synopsis:
It’s the summer of 1980 and Björn Borg (Sverrir Gudnason) is the top tennis player in the world. A powerful and rigorously disciplined player, there is only one obstacle in his pursuit of a record-breaking fifth Wimbledon championship: the highly talented but ferociously abrasive young American, John McEnroe (Shia LaBeouf). With three days until the tournament begins, Borg trains religiously in his lavish Monaco home, aided by his coach and mentor Lennart (Stellan Skarsgård) and girlfriend Mariana (Tuva Novotny). But McEnroe’s explosive confidence and wrecking-ball persona continue to infiltrate Borg’s ice-cool and normally unshakable temperament. With each man the antithesis of the other, both players delve into their formative memories as the climactic tournament draws near and anticipation reaches fever pitch. Visceral and breathlessly tense, the match itself – regarded as one of the greatest of all time – would mark the pinnacle of the ‘Fire and Ice’ rivalry between them.


My first introduction to tennis was at primary school. It was all down to my childhood school friend, Caroline who developed a fascination for Björn Borg. She spent every spare moment, drawing Borg and cartoon strips of John McEnroe, with “You cannot be serious!” speech bubbles, eventually drawing her crush vs his rival into a cartoon complete with headbands.

By the time I finally watched tennis on television, Borg was no longer playing professionally, but McEnroe was still throwing his tennis rackets, I wanted to see what  Caroline’s kiddie crush was all about.

 

The title Borg Vs McEnroe instantly reminds me of those summer days of 1979 and 1980, and the film takes us back to that time, with the great, almost uncanny lookalike casting of Gudnason, and to a lesser degree, LaBeouf. As Borg prepares for his fifth attempt at the Wimbledon championship, we see flashbacks to his childhood (played by Borg’s son, Leo Borg), and highlights of his journey to professional player. These flashbacks give an insight into the inscrutable ‘IceBorg’ character that I never knew about and adds depth to the rivalry between Borg and McEnroe. McEnroe also has flashbacks to his childhood, and again, there are examples of his intelligence, drive and ‘SpoiltBrat’ nickname. I found these insights to their characters fascinating. The same flashbacks were repeated through the film, and I felt they were over-used – we didn’t need to see the same clips over to get the message.

Another challenge the film had was to make tennis look exciting on film. I had a little help with feeling nervous, as I hadn’t checked and didn’t remember the actual outcome of the 1980 championship. I was tense, I didn’t know what would happen next. If I’d known the outcome or how the match played out, I might not have found it so interesting! The film finds the right balance to keep it interesting enough for me.

The claimed rivalry doesn’t really come across on screen, infact, in some way, you get the impression that the players admired each other – this makes it a nicer film, touching. You get a sense of how intense match preparation is, and it offers insight into the off-court pressures and tensions of all tennis players.

I’m not a big tennis fan, I’ll watch a game if I catch it on, but I don’t currently follow the players, and I still enjoyed this film, loved what I learnt, and came away with a good feeling from Borg vs McEnroe.

Borg Vs McEnroe website

#BorgMcEnroe

Dying Laughing – Chris Rock, Stephen K Amos, Billy Connolly, Kevin Hart…

The Definitive In-Depth Look at Stand-Up Comedy by Legends of the Industry

Release Date: 16th June 2017
Running time: 88 mins
Certificate: 15
Directors: Paul Toogood, Lloyd Stanton
Cast: Chris Rock, Jamie Foxx, Jerry Seinfeld, Steve Coogan, Eddie Izzard, Amy Schumer, Billy Connolly, Paul Provenza, Sarah Silverman, Rick Overton, Jerry Lewis, Stephen K. Amos, Dave Attell, Sandra Bernhard, Tiffany Haddish, Frankie Boyle, Jo Brand, Neal Brennan, Bobby Lee, Jim Jefferies, Tom Dreesen, Kirk Fox, Cocoa Brown, Keenen Ivory Wayans


Synopsis:
DYING LAUGHING is a candid look inside the agony and ecstasy of making people laugh for a living. A stand-up comedian must be the writer, the director, and the star performer. There is no rehearsal, no practice, and no safety net when you’re in front of a live audience. For most people, baring their soul on stage and having an audience “boo” at you would become a life-long trauma, but for stand-up comedians, it’s a nightly challenge. The funny and heartfelt documentary contains original interviews interlaced with personal footage of life on the road – all from a comedian’s point of view. Once you take this step behind the curtain, you will never look at these funny folks the same way again.”


I seem to remember all of the comedy gigs I’ve been to in the past; where they were, who the funniest comedian was, and that one joke I always managed to carry away that when I think back, makes me chuckle. There is a sometimes a kind of uncomfortableness about some of the jokes, because they are very close to home, or something we shouldn’t be laughing at, but other jokes – the mere observation of our ridiculousness makes us laugh at ourselves. I’m always aware that I’ve gone to see a show, ready to laugh, prepared to be entertained, with no idea how the comedian is planning to entertain and keep me amused.

Dying Laughing sets the record straight. In it, iconic comedians speak to camera about their experience of stand-up comedy, from starting out, through writing, up on to the stage. These are well-known comedians, from the USA and the UK. They speak of laughter, hecklers, touring, loneliness, mental health, and bombing, and they took me on a rollercoaster of emotions.

At the start of the film, when they are speaking about the fun parts of comedy, there was a moment when I wondered if I could do stand-up. When they started to talk about me/you/us the audience, and the hecklers, it reminded me of that infamous Bernie Mac performance, ‘I ain’t scared of you….!’, and as the documentary goes on, I realised that it takes a certain strength to be a comedian. One I don’t have! I think Chris Rock sums it up best in the documentary, when he speaks about comedians being observers, intelligent observers – ignorance is bliss, and so the other side is quite painful, that observations, that knowing, being a viewer.

I left the cinema smiling, and in awe. An absolutely brilliant film, as I said, prepare to go on an emotional rollercoaster.

DYING LAUGHING is in UK cinemas and On Demand 16th June http://www.dyinglaughingfilm.com

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2017 Sundance Film Festival

The 2017 Sundance Film Festival: London starts tomorrow; films are screening at PictureHouse Central.

On from the 1st – 4th June 2017.

Here are two Feature films and two Short film programmes to see:

JUNE 2017

Friday 2 – Sundance Film Festival Short Film Tour [18]

Friday 2 | Saturday 3 – The Incredible Jessica James [18]
Director: Jim Strouse.
Starring: Jessica Williams, Chris O’Dowd, Lakeith Stanfield, Noël Wells. USA 2017. 85 mins.

Friday 2 | Saturday 3 – Crown Heights [18]
Director: Matt Ruskin.
Starring: Lakeith Stanfield, Nnamdi Asomugha, Natalie Paul, Bill Camp, Nestor Carbonell, Amari Cheatom. USA 2017. 99 mins.

Sunday 4 – Sundance Film Festival UK Shorts [18]

 

My Life as a Courgette

Running time: 70 mins
Release Date: 2 June 2017
Certificate: PG
Director: Claude Barras
Voices: Nick Offerman, Ellen Page, Will Forte and Amy Sedaris


Synopsis:
After his mother’s sudden death, Courgette is befriended by a police officer, Raymond, who accompanies him to his new foster home filled with other orphans his age. At first he struggles to find his place in this often strange and hostile
environment. Yet with Raymond’s help and his newfound friends, Courgette eventually learns to trust and love, as he searches for a new family of his own.


My Life as a Courgette is a beautiful animation, looking at young emotions in difficult times. Throughout the film, I thought the children were in a loving and caring children’s home, rather than a foster home. The emotions and issues are portrayed well in children with differing problems. The film is great to see, amusing, sad, and hopeful.

Mindhorn

Running time: 89 mins
Release Date: 5th May 2017
Certificate: 15
Director: Sean Foley
Cast: Julian Barratt, Russell Tovey, Andrea Riseborough, Essie Davis, Harriet Walter


Synopsis:
Washed-up Richard Thorncroft (Julian Barratt) peaked with hit 1980s detective show Mindhorn, playing the titular Isle of Man sleuth with a robotic eye that allowed him to literally “see the truth”. Decades later, when a deranged Manx criminal demands Mindhorn as his nemesis, Thorncroft returns to the scene of his greatest triumphs for one last chance to reignite his glory days, professional credibility and even romance with former co-star/paramour Patricia Deville (Essie Davis).


What the hell? That was my first thought! But this crime-comedy-whodunit grew and grew on me! Deffo go and see this one, it is so bad, it’s good. Cheese upon cheese, with great performances from all, all set on the Isle of Man.

The Transfiguration

Running time: 97 mins
Release Date: 21st April 2017
Certificate: 15
Director: Michael O’Shea
Cast: Eric Ruffen, Xhloe Levine, Jelly Bean


Synopsis:
An atmospheric, intricate study of a troubled young mind, The Transfiguration follows orphaned teen Milo (Eric Ruffin) as he immerses himself in vampire lore to escape his troubled life. In Queens, New York, 14 year-old Milo is a total outsider. Ignored by his schoolmates and bullied by older children, he takes refuge in the apartment he shares with his older brother. To escape his solitude, he studies vampire mythology, to the point of obsession. Milo hides a terrible secret, but a chance encounter with neighbor Sophie (Chloe Levine) leads him to develop new feelings. But will it be enough to quash his dark urges?


Milo, Milo, Milo, where to begin with Milo? He is at first, a school boy, bullied by his peers, he arrives as the victim – sad, friendless, loner, but soon enough, we learn of another side of Milo, and hope and nerves ride side by side as his friendship with his neighbour, Sophie develops. But Milo’s struggles continue in the colour-leached setting of his estate, as he strives to find a solution to end his troubles.