SXSW 2010 - Day 5

Still raining. Not a good thing when one must stand outside waiting in line. Got in line early for the last day of XXpasses. The music festival starts tomorrow and will take over the Convention Center. Movies will still run for the rest of the week, but I just have to plan to get there early early.

First thing up was the MacGruber panel, How to Defuse a Bomb: Life Lessons from the Cast of MacGruber. Moderated by Akiva Schaffer, the panel included writer/director Jrma Taccone, Will Forte, Kristen Wiig, Ryan Phillippe, writer John Solomon, and last minute addition (they had to write his name on a placecard) Val Kilmer. I sat directly in front of Val Kilmer(giggle). They said this is the first group event answering questions and promoting the film, so they are still working out the kinks to their answers. Seth Myers joined the panel for a funny story about a boner ghost.

The People Vs. George Lucas screening was preceded by the short Star Wars Retold by Joseph Nicolosi. His friend Amanda who never watched the first 3 Star Wars movies, relays what she thinks the movie is about from listening to cultural references. The documentary, directed and written by Alexandre . Philippe, is chockful of impassioned interviews, stop motion, animated snippets created by the fan obsessed. The movies that defined an entire generation spurs an outcry when Lucas changes the original to digitally enhance the movies and the remaining 3 episodes of the series alienates fans of the series. The movie went a little long on the subject, but it was highly entertaining, especially if you are a Star Wars fan.

Barry Munday was next, with the biggest name cast so far of the little known features that I’ve seen so far. Starring Patrick Wilson as an 80’s kind of swagger playboy in his own mind who looses his testicales to a trumpet. He discovers a one-night stand, Judy Greer, is pregnant and he decides to step up to the plate. The movie has a TV feel with stars Jean Smart, Cybil Shepard, Malcolm McDowell, and Chloe Sevigny as the temptress sister. It was funny and entertaining, but I don’t see this playing in the big theaters for very long.

American Grindhouse is a documentary about the history of explotation cinema in the states. This could be a companion piece to Not So Hollywood, which explored this subject in Australia. Informative and amusing to see how this type of moviemaking has progressed and chanaged over the years from the lifestyle and politics of the world.

The midnight movie was Outcast, a Scottish/Irish feature that was part of the Fantastic Fest. Directed by Colm McCarthy and written by Tom McCarthy, it is a dark disturbing story of a mother fiercely protecting her son from the man hunting them using dark magic. His mother uses the same kind of magic. There’s also some mysterious beast killing people. Lots of blood and gore, but not overkill. Just enough to gross one out...especially when the man cuts a slice of skin with a tattoo from his neck. The woman next to me held her sweater over her face during this scene.

This is the last day of the film festival competition. The Music Festival starts on Wednesday. The movies will continue to run until Saturday, and hopefully not with the massive crowds. (Article by Reesa Cruz Hawkins of Dallas Movie Screenings)