Coming Soon to IndieFest 2014: “Asphalt Watches”, “I Hate Myself :)” & “GriGris””

I Hate Myself ūüôā

I hate myselftwo-stars1Interested in watching a narcissistic filmmaker with serious low self-esteem issues document a yearlong relationship with her self-hating, dangerously insensitive and equally confused boyfriend? What if I told you there’s an uncomfortable explicit sex scene in where the daughter involved is pleading for her parents to watch? Oooooh, sounds provocative and daring, no?

Look, there’s a fine line between bravery and stupidity, and your pleasure or displeasure for this film will most likely depend on which side of the fence you feel this film falls on. I think my star rating is a clear indicator as to where I stand.

I have to admit, ‘provocative and daring’ are two thematic elements that are usually right up my alley, which is why I admire several works of known boundary pushing provocateurs such as¬†Lars von Trier¬†(Antichrist),¬†Gaspar No√©¬†(Irreversible),¬†Larry Clark¬†(Ken Park),¬†Harmony Korine¬†(Gummo) and¬†Pier Paolo Pasolini¬†¬†(Sal√≤). As far as I’m concerned, that’s good company to be in, yet director and co-star¬†Joanna Arnow¬†is not quite there yet – even if she has little¬†qualms about baring it all, both figuratively and literally, for the world to see.

Showtimes for I Hate Myself :):
Tuesday, Feb 11th 7:00pm (New Parkway)
Friday, Feb 14th 7:00pm (Roxie)
Tuesday, Feb 18th 7:00pm (Roxie)

Asphalt Watches

458948513_640three-stars15Have 94 minutes to kill? Sure ya do. Turn off that part of your brain that insists on reading into things, sit back, and enjoy the trip. Can’t do that? Well, good luck enjoying this film then.

Not all road trips are best documented by travel blogs, twitter feeds, facebook updates, photos, or even writing journals. In the case of artists Shayne Ehman and Seth Scriver¬†animation most resembling the likes of “Home Movies” and “Bob’s Burgers” works as the perfect historical account for their strange encounters they met during their¬†trans-Canadian hitchhiking expedition.

This is like a feature-length pilot episode for the next big thing to hit Adult Swim. I’d watch 15 minute episodes of Buck Tooth and Skelton Hat in a heartbeat, heck I’d even watch another one of their full-length adventures.

Showtimes for Asphalt Watches:
Monday, Feb 10th 7:00pm (New Parkway)
Friday, Feb 14th 7:00pm (Roxie)
Monday Feb 17th 7:00pm (Roxie)

GriGris

Grigris-600three-stars15Apparently the path of an artist and the path of crime do not bode well together, a reality the eponymous GriGris, a talented photographer and extraordinary dancer, will ultimately have to come to terms with.

The story of GriGris is about a North African man (from the country of Chad, to be specific) who is unable to foresee any possible ill-fated consequences to any of his actions, irregardless of how good-hearted his intentions may be. Wanting to earn money for his stepfather, Grigris turns to the illegal world of petrol smuggling, a profession in which he is clearly not suited to be in. This guy needs to be dancing professionally, unfortunately I get the feeling there aren’t many talent agents in his small neck of the woods.

The best elements of this film, which are the scenes in where we see Grigris’ electrifying dance routines, far outweigh any of the film’s weaker elements, mostly the sub-par direction of the supportive non-actors, in turn making a potential great ¬†African film appear to be one that is just merely better than most.

Showtimes for Grigris:
Saturday, Feb 8th 12:15pm (Roxie)
Sunday, Feb 9th 7:00pm (Roxie)
Tuesday, Feb 18th 9:15pm (New Parkway)

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Categories: IndieFest, Reviews

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