Ep 511: Reinaldo Marcus Green Returns • Melanie Mayron

[5 mins. 14 secs.] Reinaldo Marcus Green (Stop) returns to the podcast on the eve of the release of his feature, Monsters and Men. The film, which premiered at Sundance earlier this year — and where it won the special jury award for outstanding first feature— opens tomorrow in theaters. In NYC it will be at the Alamo Drafthouse in Brooklyn as well as the City Cinemas East, AMC Empire, and the Angelika in Manhattan. In this timely story, a young father witnesses the police shooting of an unarmed black man, as the tight-knit community of Bed-Stuy is pushed to the brink. The film stars Kelvin Harrison, Jr., Anthony Ramos and Joh David Washington in central roles. The film is being released by NEON and MoviePass Films.

[35 mins. 37 secs.] Melanie Mayron (thirtysomething) has been acting for decades in scores of films and TV shows. She has directed a new film called Snapshots which is currently available on iTunes cable on demand. Matriarch Rose (Piper Laurie) has made her Table Rock Lake house her home for over 50 years. When her daughter Patty (Brooke Adams) and granddaughter Allison arrive with an old camera they’ve found and show the pictures from the 50-year-old film that they had developed, Rose is transported back to the early 1960s when Louise and Zee entered her and husband Joe’s life.

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Ep 510: Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Eugene Hernandez • Alonso Ruizpalacios

[4 mins. 54 secs.] Eugene Hernandez is the Deputy Director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, and is the guest on this segment of the podcast. Eugene joined the Film Society in 2010 to focus on their digital initiatives. His role has since expanded and he sits down to discuss his role, his prior years at IndieWire (of which he is a co-founder), and our common love of the movies.

The 56th New York Film Festival will take place this year from September 28th through October 14th, almost entirely on the Lincoln Center campus (Walter Reade Theater, Elinor Bunin Monroe Film Center and Alice Tully Hall). The opening night film is Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Favorite; the Centerpiece is Alfred Cuaron’s Roma; and the Closing Night film is Julian Schnable’s At Eternity’s Gate. In addition to the Main Slate, there is also Spotlight Documentary, Convergence (VR, Immersive Cinema, AI, etc.), and Projections (experimental and avant guards works). Check out the festival’s website for details and ticket sales.

[1 hr. 4 mins. 17 secs.] 2014’s Güeros was an award-winning film which put Mexican dircetor Alonso Ruizpalacios on the map as an emerging International filmmaker to watch for. His follow up is called Museo and is currently in theaters. The film, which stars Gael García Bernal, is currently in theaters. Museo tells the story where, in 1985, a group of criminals mock the security of the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City to extract 140 pre-Hispanic pieces from their showcases.

Filmwax Radio is presented by Rooftop Films. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram. The podcast is also available on iTunes, Stitcher & Youtube.

Ep 509: Jim Cummings • Lisa D’Apolito & Lisa Rosman

[7 mins. 25 secs.] The filmmaker Jim Cummings visits the podcast to discuss his first feature film, Thunder Road which will be opening theatrically on Friday, October 12th. In the meantime you can see an advance preview of Jim’s film as well as a number of other films (including John Landis’ never-before-seen Schlock) on Sunday, September 23rd which is Art House Theater Day. That day celebrates the legacy of independent theaters as advocates for cinematic arts. In an age where media has become more digital than tangible, more solitary than social, art house theaters remain the physical spaces where film lovers congregate and connect with intrepid, creative filmmaking. They are the beating heart for new and exciting cinema that is shaping the future of the medium. For details and a complete list of participating theaters, visit www.arthousetheaterday.com. Thunder Road is written by, directed by, and stars Jim Cummings and is based on his 2016 Sundance Film Festival Short Film Grand Jury Prize winning film of the same name. The feature centers on Jim Arnaud (Cummings), a Texan police officer, who struggles to raise his daughter as a love letter to his late mom. It is a tragicomic portrait of a failing figure of authority in America. You can also watch a number of Jim’s shorts as well as his web series, on Filmstruck. The short film version of Thunder Road may be found on Vimeo.

[50 mins. 23 secs.] Also on the podcast, Lisa D’Apolito, the director of the documentary Love, Gilda about the brilliant and beloved comedian and one of the original Not Ready For Prime Time Players, Gilda Radner. Diaries, audiotapes, videotapes and testimonies from friends and colleagues offer insight into the life and career of Gilda Radner, the beloved comic and actress who became an icon on Saturday Night Live. Among the many talking heads in the film are Andrew Alexander, Anne Beatts, Chevy Chase, Bill Hader, Janis Hirsch, Judy Levy, Melissa McCarthy, Lorne Michaels, Laraine Newman, Marcus O’Hara, Amy Poehler, Michael Radner, Maya Rudolph, Stephen Schwartz, Paul Shaffer, Martin Short, Rosie Shuster, Cecily Strong, Jordan Walker-Perlman, Pam Zakheim and Alan Zweibel. The film opens nationwide this Friday, September 21st, and is being distributed by Magnolia Pictures and CNN Films. The director and I are joined by colleague, friend & Gilda Radner aficionado, Lisa Rosman.

Filmwax Radio is presented by Rooftop Films. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram. The podcast is also available on iTunes, Stitcher & Youtube.

Ep 508: Ari Gold & Ethan Gold

The Song of Sway Lake stars Rory Culkin (Hulu’s Castle Rock, Igby Goes Down, Signs), Robert Sheehan (Misfits, Love/Hate, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones), Isabelle McNally (Bates Motel, Before I Disappear), Mary Beth Peil (Tony nominated for Anastasia and The King and I, The Stepford Wives, Dawson’s Creek), the late Elizabeth Pena (The Incredibles, Rush Hour), and Jack Falahee (How to Get Away with Murder, Twisted). A young man’s plot to steal a valuable jazz record from his grandmother’s lake house is derailed when his accomplice falls for the matriarch.

This episode of the podcast is a family affair, as Song of Sway Lake is co-written and directed by Ari Gold (Adventures of Power) with Original Music and Songs provided by twin brother Ethan Gold.

Filmwax Radio is presented by Rooftop Films. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram. The podcast is also available on iTunes, Stitcher & Youtube.

Ep 507: Jack Lechner & Rob King • Sasha Waters Freyer

[7 mins. 20 secs.] Columbia School of the Arts film teachers Jack Lechner and Rob King are the guests on the first segment of this episode. They have produced a retrospective for Filmwax friend and fellow Columbia film teacher, producer Ira Deutchman (see Episode 444). The retrospective will include 17 seminal indie films in which Ira has been involved including sex, lies and videotape, A Woman Under the Influence and Parting Glances, plus various panels and Q&As with Deutchman and myriad filmmakers & indie film luminaries. The retrospective, called NY Indie Guy: Ira Deutchman and the Rise of Independent Film, will take place at Columbia’s Lenfest Center for the Arts, 615 W. 129th Street, from September 14th through the 23rd. Check out the website for schedule and tickets.

In the second segment, I interview photographer and filmmaker Sasha Water Freyer about her documentary Garry Winogrand: Everything is Photographable. The film will have a NYC theatrical at Film Forum beginning on Wednesday, September 19th. “What is a photograph?” Garry Winogrand (1928-1984) asks in his iconic, gravelly Bronx accent. Winogrand was a compulsive street photographer (although he hated that term), working for decades in NYC, then in Texas and California, to create a huge body of work (hundreds of thousands of images taken with his 35mm Leica) that comprise an encyclopedic portrait of America. During his lifetime he was celebrated (as a favorite of MoMA curator John Szarkowski) and reviled (especially for his book, Women Are Beautiful) and then more-or-less forgotten after his untimely death at age 56. Writes Jennifer Szalai in The New York Times: “(Winogrand) captured the fallout from the midcentury American moment – those few decades from the 1950s on, when placid, middle-class prosperity started to give way to something less affluent, more fragmented and harder to define.”

Filmwax Radio is presented by Rooftop Films. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram. The podcast is also available on iTunes, Stitcher & Youtube.

Ep 506: Amy Scott • Kristin Slaysman & Josh Crockett

[6 mins. 9 secs.] In the first segment of this episode, first-time documentary filmmaker Amy Scott, with a film about the legendary 70’s filmmaker Hal Ashby called Hal. Although Hal Ashby directed a remarkable string of acclaimed, widely admired classics throughout the 1970s— Harold and Maude, The Last Detail, Shampoo, Coming Home, Being There— he is often overlooked amid the crowd of luminaries from his generation. Amy Scott’s exuberant portrait explores that curious oversight, using rare archival materials, interviews, personal letters, and audio recordings to reveal a passionate, obsessive artist. Ashby was a Hollywood director who constantly clashed with Hollywood, but also a unique soul with an unprecedented insight into the human condition and an unmatched capacity for good. His films were an elusive blend of honesty, irreverence, humor, and humanity. Through the heartrending and inspiring Hal, you feel buoyed by Ashby’s love of people and of cinema, a little like walking on water. Hal opens Friday, September 7th, at the Nuart Theater in Los Angeles, at the Landmark Cinemas in San Francisco, at the IFC Center in New York City, and many other cities around the nation. Check the Oscilloscope web page for details.

[46 mins.] Then I speak with filmmaking team Kristin Slaysman and Josh Crockett about their film, Dr. Brinks and Dr. Brinks, which as of this week is available on demand, on iTunes, Amazon, other digital streaming platforms as well as on cable. Estranged siblings (Slaysman & Scott Rodgers) reunite after their parents die in a plane crash. In the days following the wake, they can’t help but turn their current lives and relationships into chaos as they’re forced to reckon with their shared past.  The film —which premiered last year at the Maryland Film Festival— also stars Filmwax friends Robert Longstreet & Ashley Spillers.

Filmwax Radio is presented by Rooftop Films. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram. The podcast is also available on iTunes, Stitcher & Youtube.