Tonight in Seattle:  


SIFF Interview: 5 Questions with Jason Schwartzman and Bob Byington for 7 Chinese Brothers

Interviewing Jason Schwartzman on the SIFF red carpet for 7 Chinese Brothers

^ OMG! it's Jason! Schwartzman!!! 

You guys! TIG got to be on the red carpet again Saturday night to interview Jason Schwartzman and Director Bob Byington for the Seattle International Film Festival premiere of 7 Chinese Brothers. I asked them both the same set of questions and got some very entertaining answers. If you missed this film at SIFF, don't worry! It's getting a wider release in August ... and after you read this interview, you'll know what kind of booze goes best with your theater soda.  

TIG: What is Arrow’s [Schwartzman’s own dog, who stars in the movie alongside him] favorite thing to do besides sleep?

Bob Byington: {I asked Bob this question but prefaced it by saying he might not know else Arrow likes to do since he only saw him on set, and his response was:}Yeah, he likes to sleep.

Jason Schwartzman: Kiss you. {right here, imagine Liz & I both sighing and saying, “awwwwww!” in unison} Yeah. It’s true; he kind of attacks the face. If you get low enough, and you give him the angle, he’s gonna take it.


SIFF Take: Shaun the Sheep

The Shaun the Sheep spirit survives intact in Shaun the Sheep Movie. Aardman’s signature wit and heart are in full flower, and all you need to know is conveyed through the action and the animal’s expressive eyes. It's considerably more exciting than a standard episode, and the stakes are higher. Typical farm shenanigans accidentally land the farmer in the Big City with his memory erased, and Bitzer and the sheep have to try and rescue him while evading an insecure and monomaniacal Animal Control officer. That’s a lot more intense than, say, a bunch of douche-y next-door pigs sabotaging a rube goldberg machine designed to get a kite out of a tree. 


SIFF Double-Feature: Jason Schwartzman in Two Closing Weekend Films

Jason and Arrow Schwartzman in 7 Chinese Brothers
Triple the adorableness! 

I’m psyched that SIFF had not one, but TWO amazing “An Evening with” programs lined up this year with actors that I adore. An Evening with Jason Schwartzman happens TOMORROW {Saturday, June 6} and I’m sure it will be just as entertaining as Kevin Bacon’s. I got my ticket long ago and the Evening is now on “standby,” but I have to have to have to talk about it anyway because …. reasons. One of them being Schwartzman’s adorable dog, Arrow, who co-stars with him in 7 Chinese Brothers, which screens during the Evening and again on Sunday (still tix available!).

Every Wes Anderson fan knows who Schwartzman is because he’s in pretty much every single one of his films, particularly Rushmore, which inspired a million people to continually quote this Max Fischer zinger (I swear to god I heard someone say this the last time I was at Linda's):

Max: I like your nurse's uniform, guy.
Dr. Flynn: These are O.R. scrubs.
Max Fischer: O, R they?


SIFF Take: Cartel Land

Cartel Land SIFF 2015

A documentary about a Mexican vigilante group fighting drug cartels! And: a documentary about the Arizona Border Recon fighting drug cartels! And: a story about how hopeless it is to fight drug cartels!

It’s really hard to take your eyes off Cartel Land—even when you might need to (re: graphic images of cartel victims). The most compelling subject is Autodefensas leader Dr. Jose Mireles (above)—and that’s all I can say without giving anything away. This isn’t a pleasant watch, but boy howdy it’s informative … and terrifying.

{Cartel Land screens at SIFF 6/1, 6:30pm at SIFF Cinema Uptown, and again 6/2, 4pm at The Harvard Exit. Director Matthew Heineman is scheduled to attend both screenings} 

SIFF Take: The Dark Horse

The Dark Horse is based on the true story of Genesis Potini, a bipolar Maori former chess champion. His older brother, the only one who can secure his release from the mental hospital, has had his own choices whittled away by extreme poverty until only compromise remains. The outside, then, offers Genesis liberty, but no haven. So he looks for purpose, something to help him focus his attention as he gingerly protects his fragile sanity, like an easily distracted hen corralling her chick. He seizes on a scheme to teach a group of cast-off kids to play chess. To bring them to a tournament in Aukland. To find an outlet for the bounty of knowledge and compassion that’s been tangled in the chemistry of his brain. And to try to offer some sanctuary to his nephew (Boy’s James Rolleston in a heartbreaking performance), who’s set to inherit his father’s all-but-optionless life.

After it screened on Saturday night at SIFF Cinema Uptown, the film and its star Cliff Curtis received a several-minute standing ovation from the crowd, and who knows how long we would have stayed standing had Curtis not finally shushed us. Every performance defies superlatives. It’s an extraordinary, tremendous film. 

{The Dark Horse screens at SIFF 6/3, 4:00 at The Harvard Exit} 


Latest comment by: imaginary embracey: "

So sorry to've missed this. Fingers crossed for a proper release (or inclusion in the Best of SIFF program)!


SIFF Take: Chatty Catties

Chatty Catties SIFF 2015

After watching Chatty Catties with me, my cat, Frankie, insisted on writing this review. He says that I can’t possibly understand the film’s real meaning since I’m a human and not an oppressed feline like the star, Leonard. So, friends—here we go. It's an imaginary cat takeover! 

Frankie’s Review (as dictated to imaginary amie):
What a masterpiece! I’ve never seen a film so succinctly sum up the struggles of our kind before. Sure, there’s been some talking cat movies, but nothing that even comes close to the truth of this. Watching the real desires and thoughts of cats realized on screen via amazing voice actors filled me with hope that our days of being misunderstood by humans might be coming to an end.

Chatty Catties is primarily the story of Leonard, a beautiful striped tabby who has THE WORST HUMAN EVER.


Latest comment by: Roxie Rider: "

Rock on, Frankie!


SIFF Interview: 5 Questions (+5 Photos) with Kevin Bacon

Kevin Bacon on the SIFF 2015 Red Carpet for Cop Car

Three Imaginary Girls got to hit the red carpet last night for An Evening with Kevin Bacon and the premiere of Cop Car at the Seattle International Film Festival with Director Jon Watts & star Kevin Bacon in attendance!! !!! !!! I was somehow able to keep my cool (but just barely) while asking him 5 very important questions.

TIG: If YOU had a cop car, would you leave your keys in it?
Kevin Bacon: Noooo! Definitely not; worst decision ever. He’s [Sherriff Kretzer; Bacon’s character in Cop Car] trying to be cool, but he obviously hasn’t really given it a lot of thought.

TIG: Who would win in a fight: Ryan Hardy [from The Following] or Sherriff Kretzer?
KB: I think Ryan Hardy. Yeah. I think he’s got some moves that the Sherriff doesn’t even know about.

More questions and photos after the jump ...


Latest comment by: imaginary embracey: "

So cool!


SIFF Take: A Brilliant Young Mind

“If beauty is truth and truth beauty, then maths must be the most beautiful thing in the world.”

A pastiche of gorgeous, even sumptuous color and pattern nevertheless maintains a slight emotional buffer, a thin and transparent but ever-present barrier between beauty and the sensation of experiencing that beauty. Drops of red, red blood—redder than a stop light or the red lorry that runs it—retain a rare, fragile beauty, even as it’s clear what they represent. The camera often settles just shy of the expected distance, or just a little too close or too far too the side, and we see things, maybe, perhaps at least a bit, the way Nathan does. Nathan’s a math genius, and on the spectrum. But A Brilliant Young Mindis not a triumph-of-the-savant film, and it’s not about colors. Plot-wise, in fact, it’s pleasantly familiar. Nathan (Asa Butterfield, best known from Hugo) convenes with a veritable nerd convention—musical, mathematical, acerbic, semi-cool, insufferable, autistic, and garden-variety—to pursue a slot at the Internationals Math Olympics. They, and the adults around them, go through their sometimes routine, sometimes extraordinary days trying to figure out how to navigate relationships when relationships are far more inscrutable than the math problems they’re bent on solving.

{A Brilliant Young Mind screens at SIFF 5/28, at 4pm at The Harvard Exit.} 


SIFF Take: Circle

Circle is a Sci-Fi social experiment where a group of people fleeing an alien invasion awaken to find themselves locked inside a room with a giant circular dial in the middle. It takes them a little bit of time to realize that each of them are “voting” to pick who will die. After discussing their options (of which there aren’t many; you choose who dies or you might be next), good and bad traits are revealed and cliques form in a battle for survival.

I wasn’t sure what to think about this film when it first began—spending 87 minutes in one room with the same people seemed like it might be a bit much, but I gotta give props to the filmmakers; it actually seemed just right. The cast is diverse and not entirely unrecognizable (hi Julie Benz!); something which suits the mood of the movie really well. All in all, I thought Circle was a good, suspenseful way to spend my viewing time.

{Circle screens at SIFF 5/28, 9pm—screening on standby—and again 5/29, 1:15pm at SIFF Cinema Uptown. Directors Aaron Hann & Mario Miscione are scheduled to attend both screenings} 


Footloose 1984

In case it’s not obvious, I am a huge fan of Kevin Bacon. A large part of this is because of Footloose, sure, because that movie came out right when I discovered dancing was the thing I loved to do the most—and HELLO: Ren McCormack was/is a stone cold fox. Plus: BEST SOUNDTRACK EVER. So good that I wore out my cassette tape in 1984… not once, but twice. But nevermind my Ren-obsession: Bacon is straight-up one of the best actors out there, and I never miss a chance to see him do his thing on screen. 

If you feel the same way I do, you can’t miss the double-feature of 80's classics screening this Tuesday, May 26 at SIFF Cinema Egyptian: Diner & Footloose. The next night (Weds May 27) is An Evening with Kevin Bacon, including a screening of his latest film: Cop Car.