2006 Wisconsin Film Festival Film Guide

Page 23


Look Both Ways balances whimsy and existential angst.

Lonesome Jim FRI, MAR 31 • 9:30 PM Orpheum Main


Dramatic Feature, USA, 2005, color, 35mm • 92 min. DIRECTOR: Steve Buscemi; PRODUCER: Galt Niederhoffer, Celine Rattray, Daniela Taplin Lundberg, Jake Abraham, Gary Winick, Steve Buscemi; EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Jonathan Sehring, Caroline Kaplan, John Sloss, Reagan Silber, Anna Waterhouse; WRITER: James C. Strouse; CINEMATOGRAPHER: Phil Parmet; EDITOR: Plummy Tucker; MUSIC: Evan Lurie; CAST: Casey Affleck, Liv Tyler, Mary Kay Place, Seymour Cassel, Kevin Corrigan, Jack Rovello, Sarah & Rachel Strouse, Mark Boone Junior; PRODUCTION CO: InDigEnt and IFC Productions

(MADISON PREMIERE) Jim (Casey Affleck)

returns home to Indiana after flunking life in New York City. He wants nothing more than to be depressed and contemplate tragic poets, or maybe just mooch off his folks until he figures out what to do next. But his brother (Kevin Corrigan) is resentful of Jim’s presence, his father (Seymour Cassel) is dismissive, and his mother is relentlessly chipper and clueless about nearly everything around her (a perfect performance by Mary Kay Place). Quirky complications set in as Jim gets entangled at the family factory, where a hilariously black-sheep cousin named Evil is dealing drugs. Despite all odds, salvation might find Jim through the attentions of Anika (Liv Tyler), a nurse with a young son and the ability to see past his inertia. Steve Buscemi directs these characters with a balance of melancholy and dry, off-center wit that is, as Roger Ebert said, “a little masterpiece of mood.” (MEG HAMEL)

Long Distance SEE Wisconsin’s Own Shorts: Play Circle

Look Both Ways SAT, APR 1 • 1 PM University Square


SUN, APR 2 • 4:15 PM Hilldale 2


Dramatic Feature, Australia, 2005, color, 35mm • 100 min. DIRECTOR: Sarah Watt; PRODUCER: Bridget Ikin; EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Andrew Myer; WRITER: Sarah Watt; CINEMATOGRAPHER: Ray Argall; EDITOR: Denise Haratzis; CAST: Justine Clarke, William McInnes, Anthony Hayes, Lisa Flanagan, Andrew S. Gilbert, Daniella Farinacci, Maggie Dence; PRODUCTION CO: Hibiscus Films

Australian animator Sarah Watt creates a vibrant first feature that weaves together the stories of several characters, each affected by a fatal train accident. Balancing between whimsy and existential angst, Look Both Ways focuses on the budding relationship


between Meryl (Justine Clark), who witnessed the accident, and Nick (William McInnes), a news photographer sent to the scene. In most romantic comedies, Meryl would have instantly fallen for hunky Nick, but both are distracted by their own questions of mortality. Meryl, an illustrator up against a deadline, imagines different scenarios for her own demise, animated sequences that kick some visual spark into this beautifully written story. Winner, 2005 Best Film, Best Direction, Best Screenplay, Australian Film Institute; 2005 Discovery Award, Toronto Film Festival. (MEG HAMEL)

The Magnificent Donut SEE Wisconsin’s Own Shorts: Play Circle

Mardi Gras: Made In China FRI, MAR 31 • 10 PM Monona Terrace


Casey Affleck stars as Lonesome Jim, back home in Indiana after flunking life in New York City.

Marx y Bakunin: El Debate Imaginario SEE Young Visions and Voices

Max and Mona FRI, MAR 31 • 9 PM Stage Door


SUN, APR 2 • 1:30 PM Hilldale 2


Dramatic Feature, South Africa, 2004, color, 35mm • 98 min. DIRECTOR: Teddy Mattera; PRODUCER: Tendeka Matatu; EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Joel Phiri and Jeremy Nathan; WRITER: Teddy Mattera and Greg Latter; CINEMATOGRAPHER: Ivan Leathers; EDITOR: Henion Han; MUSIC: Phillip Miller; CAST: Mpho Lovinga, Thumi Melamu, Jerry Mofokeng, Percy Matsemela, Coco Merckel, Sepulta Sebugodi; PRODUCTION CO: Ice Media, Film i Väst, Dv8. IN TSWANA, AFRIKAANS, ZULU, ENGLISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES SERIES: Global Lens

SUN, APR 2 • 5:30 PM

(MIDWEST PREMIERE) For his debut feature

Monona Terrace

Teddy Mattera delivers a charming comedy about a country bumpkin named Max who leaves his village for a Johannesburg medical school. Sounds like a simple plan, but Max is no ordinary boy, he is a talented mourner whose wailings unleash the winds. Max travels with an extraordinary animal, a sacred goat who has a taste for cannabis. When Max arrives in the big city he hooks up with his dim-witted Uncle Norman who runs an unlicensed tavern out of his house. When Uncle Norman discovers Max’s curious wailing abilities, he quickly puts him to work in the lucrative undertaking industry. The King of Tears, as Uncle Norman dubs him, takes undertaking to wild and hilarious extremes.


Documentary Feature, USA, 2005, color, BetaSP • 71 min. DIRECTOR: David Redmon; PRODUCER: David Redmon; EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Deborah Smith, Dale Smith; CINEMATOGRAPHER: David Redmon; EDITOR: David Redmon; MUSIC: Matthew Dougherty; CAST: Ms. Pearl, Roger Wong, Ga Hong Mei, Lio Lina, Qui Bia, Ling Ling, Dom Corlone IN MANDARIN, ENGLISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES SERIES: Y’all Gonna Learn Chinese PRESENTED BY: UW Asian American Studies Program

In a squalid Chinese factory, Ga Hong Mei spends 11 hours a day yanking strings of hot beads out of a dangerous machine. She struggles to fill enough bags to prevent her wages from getting docked. On the other side of the world, New Orleans native “Ms. Pearl” squeals with delight as she catches her zillionth tangle of glistening bead necklaces from a Mardi Gras float. Mardi Gras: Made in China portrays the immense disconnect between the factory and the consumer in the global economy. The cultural and economical differences are stunning, as is the Chinese workers’ reaction to the sticker price of the beads and the astonishing way people “win” the beads. Tracing the path of a disposable commodity, filmmaker David Redmon tells a story in which CEOs aren’t really the bad guys, we are. Official selection, Sundance Film Festival, One World International Film Festival, Amnesty International Film Festival, and Human Rights Watch Film Festival. (HEATHER SHIMON)

Metal is an epic journey through the history of heavy metal music.


Metal: A Headbanger’s Journey SAT, APR 1 • 10 PM Orpheum Main


Documentary Feature, Canada, 2005, color, 35mm • 96 min. DIRECTOR: Sam Dunn, Scot McFadyen, Jessica Joy Wise; PRODUCER: Sam Dunn, Scot McFadyen, Jessica Joy Wise; EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Sam Feldman, John Hamilton, David Reckziegel, Noah Segal; CINEMATOGRAPHER: Brendan Steacy; EDITOR: Mike Munn; PRODUCTION CO: Banger Productions Inc. PRESENTED BY: 105.5 Triple M

“If you say ‘Welcome To My Nightmare,’ you don’t just say it. You do it. Give


Max’s pet Mona is a sacred goat with a taste for cannabis. them the nightmare.” — Alice Cooper. What we get in Metal is a headbanger’s dream, an epic journey through the heart and history of heavy metal music. Filmmaker Sam Dunn is our guide, showing why fans have a cult-like devotion to the music that is often condemned and dismissed. Issues of violence, censorship and sex (“I never questioned my sexuality at any point, and I was up there in lingerie,” says Dee Snider of Twisted Sister) are explored

through interviews with some of the most legendary metal giants (Bruce Dickenson, Ronnie James Dio, Tommy Iommi, Lemmy). “Strong enough to make believers out of non-metalheads and inside enough to get the devil’shorns salute from the most die-hard followers. The soundtrack, as might be expected, kicks ass.” — Ken Eisner, Variety. Raise your lighter high. (MEG HAMEL)

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