Saturday, March 21, 2009

Take a bite out of Spring!

Yesterday was the first official first day of spring; certainly an event in itself. Today, however, marks an even bigger event (at least to some people…)!! Today Twilight comes out on DVD. Of course, the HBPL Media department has multiple copies (Five!!) available for our patrons. But just like the books, the Twilight DVD’s will be very popular. So while you are waiting you might try some other vampire-fare:

The Lost Boys: Before he started saving the world as Jack Bauer, Keifer Sutherland played a punk vampire in this 1987 campy vampire flick. Dianne Weist plays a mother who moves with her sons to a small California coastal town. Of course, suspicious things start happening. The younger son starts hanging out with some teenage vampire hunters (played by the Corey’s – Corey Haim and Corey Feldman) while the older boy starts sleeping days and staying out all night. I always loved the tagline for this film: Sleep all day. Party all night. Never grow old. Never die. It's fun to be a vampire. And that about says it all about this film.

Låt den rätte komma in (aka Let the Right One In): Do you like your vampires Swedish? If so, this is the film for you! Twelve year old Oskar is so wimpy that he's constantly picked on by the other boys at his school. Out of fear, Oskar never fights back. One evening, Oskar notices a new girl about his age and her father moving into the apartment next door to his. Eli, the new girl, is not very friendly, as she tells him right off that she can't be friends with him. What she doesn’t tell him is that she is a vampire. Although there is certainly blood galore in this film, it is ultimately a story of friendship and the difficulties of coming of age.

And if these two aren’t enough for you, there is always the vampire mainstays like Dracula or Interview with the Vampire. The Media department will have many titles that you can sink your teeth into (vampire pun intended!).

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Film Festival Fun

The thing I like most about going to film festivals is that I get to see incredible films that will never reach our theaters. For every film that makes the American movie theater, there are hundreds that will never get distribution. I just got back from the Cinequest Film Festival ( ) up in San Jose, CA. Only a quick three day visit but I was able to see seven films. My favorites were the documentaries.

Living in Emergency: Stories of Doctors Without Borders:
After 15 years of a devastating civil war, Liberia is basically left with no medical infrastructure, while the Congo has collapsed into its own that has left over 4,000,000 people dead. The riveting Living in Emergency follows four members of the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Doctors Without Borders on their missions to “provide emergency medical care to populations in distress.”
When Renaldo's father moved his family to a remote Colorado ranch as a child, Renaldo dealt with his isolation by escaping to his private fantasy world and fabricating the fantasy nation of Rocaterrania. What began as the illustrated history of an imaginary world became a lifelong obsession - one that would secretly document the satirically coded story of his life. Now 76, Renaldo spins his spellbinding tale, illustrated by works of art, which delve deep into the psyche of this delightful and complex genius.

Neither of these currently have distribution but might in the future. They were certainly worthy of a wider audience.
You never know what gems you will find when you go to a festival. If you have never been to one, the Newport Beach Film Festival runs from April 23rd to 30th. You can give a festival a try without going far from home!