TICKETS ON SALE NOW !
The Metuchen Cultural Arts Commission and The Raconteur Present THE LAST PICTURE SHOW 2005 Film Festival. 3 days/30 films!
Sept 30, Oct 1 & 2
All films screened at
The Forum Theatre
314 Main Street, Metuchen
World renowned film director and NJ native TODD SOLONDZ (Welcome to the Dollhouse) speaks opening night!
The Last Picture Show is a weekend film festival sponsored by The Metuchen Cultural Arts Commission and The Raconteur. Its goal is threefold. One, to encourage emerging filmmakers and provide a venue for their work. Two, to screen a variety of quality features, shorts and documentaries typically unavailable to the average viewer. Three, to host a number of panels, workshops, etc. and have known filmmakers present/discuss their most recent work.
The Last Picture Show is a celebration not only of independent film but also of its landmark venue, The Forum Theatre. In 1928, James Forgione and H. A. Rumler established The Forum Theatre, naming it by combining the first three letters of their last names. The 500-seat movie house opened on March 6 of that year and showed films for over half a century before becoming home to a nonprofit theater company founded and managed by Peter Loewy.
Opening Night: $15 (for the whole night!)
Day Pass (access to all same day events): $15
V.I.P. Pass (complete access to ALL festival events): $35
Individual Screenings (single feature or collection of shorts): $5
Panels/After-parties/Award Ceremony: Free!
Tickets now available at Fest Central a.k.a. The Raconteur (431 Main, Metuchen). Tickets available at The Forum box office starting Sept 30 and throughout the festival. Individual Screening tickets for sale at The Forum box office (day of only). Printed schedules available at The Raconteur and at various locations around town starting Sept 20.
Opening Night, Fri, Sept 30
6 PM - 7 PM
Complimentary "Tasting Court" (participating restaurants include Clouseau's, Marianna's, Saucy's & The Main Street Trattoria). Complimentary wine throughout the evening.
GIMPTOWN. An unscrupulous club promoter turns the "special" employment program at his local grocery store into an after hours sideshow. "Risky Business" meets "Freaks." Alex Dawson, writer/dir. 15 min. Comedy/Drama.
RED BUGS. A chance encounter at dawn between east and west. Shot in India. Ted Passon, dir. 3 min.
ROLLERCOASTER, SPEAD READER, SHAMPOO. Three Short Films by Shannon Plumb. 1 min each. Comedy.
LUNCH BREAK. A working mother is faced with the unexpected arrival of an invasive documentary film crew and the prospect of losing her job as a cashier at a major supermarket, when a group of managers from out of town drop by for an "informal inspection." John W. McKelvey, writer/dir. 20 min. Drama.
8 PM SPECIAL APPEARANCE by TODD SOLONDZ! Q&A.
8: 45 PM PALINDROMES. Probably Solondz's bleakest movie to date, despite moments of (very dark) humor. Scientific rationalism is weighed against religious fundamentalism and both are found utterly wanting. A brave movie overall, but definitely not for the squeamish. Todd Solondz, writer/dir. Drama. Unrated.
10: 30 PM Live Music by JEREMY BENSON & THE TAKERS. Honest, straightforward, direct music devoid of ulterior motives and sung with conviction, front man Jeremy Benson belts out vivid originals, but also seizes control of songs by Springsteen, Kristofferson and The Pogues. All backed by the door-rattling fury of his soulful Takers as fitting for Benson's stack of world worn diddies as Cash's Tennessee Two.
AFTER PARTY @ THE RACONTEUR. Singer/songwriter/hipster hottie Sharon Van Etten strums, hums and bares her soul. Plus a special screening of JEFF TOWNE. Jeff Towne is a beer drinking, porno consuming, pro wrestling fanatic with Down's Syndrome. He lies, he cheats, he steals and fondles women. In short, he's a lot more like the rest of us than we care to admit. Daniel Kraus, dir. Doc. Comp wine.
Day 2, Sat, Oct 1
10 AM SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES. An eerie, spine tingling film based on the classic Ray Bradbury story. A small town is held in the evil clutches of an ominously charismatic stranger, Mr. Dark, and his macabre traveling carnival. Featuring Jason Robards and Jonathan Pryce. Jack Clayton, dir. Walt Disney, prod. PG. Fun for the whole family!
12:30 PM DISCUSSION PANEL. THE FUTURE OF INDEPENDENT FILM (Free!).
Moderated by NPR regular and award-winning author of "Me & Orson Welles," Robert Kaplow. Panel Guests: Barry Monush, Scott Cooper, Andrew Bellware, Thurston Smith & Jeff Dutemple. 1 hr.
1:30 PM THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE UNDECIDED. Modern Romance, Astro-Turf, Taste for Better, Teen Homicide, Shoot George, Rummy. A mixed bag of open submissions. Vote for the best of the bunch. Audience Favorite Award presented at Closing Ceremony.
3:30 PM THE LAST PICTURE SHOW. Director Peter Bogdanovich brings Larry McMurtry's bittersweet novel of life in a small, sleepy Texas town in the early 1950s to the big screen. This coming-of-age tale, shot in haunting black-and-white by cinematographer Robert Surtees, uses the closing of the town's only cinema as both a physical and metaphoric backdrop to the characters' lives. Peter Bogdanovich, dir. 118 min. Drama. Rated R.
SALVATION FOR SIBERIA. The landmark punk dive Siberia, best known for being located inside a subway station, was forced to vacate its unique premises several years back and for a while its future looked bleak. Fortunately, it managed to find a new home nearby on West 40th St, so for now it lives on. SALVATION FOR SIBERIA, a short film documenting the dubious months just before the club's shutdown, breathes and bleeds the true spirit of NYC and is proof that the New York underground is still very much alive! Thurston Smith, dir. 20 min. Documentary.
BARMAN. Jack Hardy, a slightly tarnished forty-something bartender, moves through the lurid neon glare of a tough NJ gin mill, working the fringes of Garden State bar life with his own particular style and private code of honor. Inspired by his five year tenure as the weekend barkeep for New Brunswick's The Plum Street Pub, Dawson's mix of memoir and fiction explores with ambient ferocity the codes and rituals of American manhood as he chronicles the rise and fall of a middle-aged, coke-house barman. Alex Dawson, writer/dir. 60 min. Drama.
7 PM SEVENTH STREET. An award winning documentary shot over a ten year period in NYC's East Village, SEVENTH STREET follows the vibrant, eccentric and sometimes dangerous characters of Alphabet City from 1992-2002. Josh Pais, dir. 72 min. Doc.
8:30 PM SEVENTH STREET director JOSH PAIS speaks. Q&A
JAW. A jawless, strip club bouncer fights freak show bouts for low level celebs while recalling his glory days as a legitimate boxer with a mean right hook and a chin like a concrete block. Alex Dawson, writer/dir. 10 min. Drama.
ROBOT BOY. A young boy is born to two very particular parents who try to improve his imperfect human parts with robot parts and a remote control. He spends all his time mowing the lawn until he meets a friend with an escape plan drawn in crayon. Ted Passon, dir. 18 min. Comedy.
TERMINAL BAR. A pictorial history of a seedy Times Square hole whose customers, from the working class Irish to the coiffed African American gay male, continually transform the pub's atmosphere and focus during the 10 year reign of barkeep/shutterbug Sheldon Nadelman. Throughout the disco/recession-era 70's, Sheldon shot more than 2,000 black and white stills of these night crawlers. His son Stefan, the film's producer, has taken this rare footage and interwoven it with his father's running commentary. The portraits are set to remixed tunes from the watering hole's Motown-heavy juke box. Stefan Nadelman, dir. 22 min. Documentary.
WELCOME TO NEW JERSEY. Inspired by an essay in which French author Albert Camus labeled Sisyphus the "proletariat of the gods," WELCOME TO NEW JERSEY examines the lives of four unfulfilled Turnpike toll takers and the tedium of shift work. Alex Dawson, writer/dir. 10 min. Drama.
SHALMOT FIELD. The festival's favorite silent film star returns in a duel for all time. Shannon Plum, dir. 10 min. Comedy.
HOME TEAM. Filmed over the course of the 2004 little league season in North Hampton, MA, HOME TEAM explores the sport through the eyes of one coach as he tries to motivate his team to win and care about the game he loves. Shaun Boyle, dir. 25 min. Doc.
THE CALM. A quirky tale of misfit boarding house tenants whose lives are changed forever by the arrival of a mysterious stranger. Joseph Taglieri, dir. 18 min. Drama/Comedy.
10:45 PM ANIMALS. After trading his home in Toronto for a farm in Nova Scotia, Jason Young decided to become his own rancher and butcher. The result is a quiet film about a stormy issue: eating meat. Filmed with striking beauty, ANIMALS documents a life-changing year in Jason's life while letting viewers reach their own conclusions. Jason Young, dir. 74 mins. Documentary.
Complimentary wine throughout the evening.
Day 3, Sun, Oct 2
*1 PM FROM OTHER WORLDS (Family Film!). Introduced by child actors Quinn Shephard (Harrison's Flowers) & Jonah Meyerson (The Royal Tennebaums). A quirky comedy about misfits trying to save the human race, FROM OTHER WORLDS proves you don't have to be a hero to act heroically. *Tentative.
2:30 GOTHAM FISH TALES. Once dead waters now harbor 370 species of fish, but the most interesting species are the people, first-rate storytellers who share their passion for angling and Manhattan. With "buoyant bravado" (New York Times), filmmaker Robert Maass delivers a charming love letter to anyone who enjoys fishing, New York and life itself. Robert Maass, dir. 74 min. Documentary. Color.
4 PM THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE UNDECIDED. Floating Rose, Jim in the Box, Musician, Adventure, Baschet, I Hate You, Surgery. A mixed bag of open submissions.
Vote for the best of the bunch. Audience Favorite Award presented at Closing Ceremony.
6 PM AWARD CEREMONY (Free!)
*Audience Favorite (Chosen from among the Good, The Bad & The Undecided).
*Metuchen High School Short Screenplay Contest; staged reading of winning screenplay.
7 PM EAT MY SHORTS (Each film 10 min or less)
**Trailer THRESHOLD OF HELL. Jonny Gillette, dir. 10 min.
CHERRIES & RATTLES. Shannon Plum, dir. 10 min.
FLICKER PRIMER. Roge Beebe, dir. 4 min
LARGE GOURD. Justin Cooper, dir. 6 min
VANCOUVER. Andrew Jeffrey Wright, dir. 5 min.
TENDER BODIES. James Duesing, animator. 8 min.
WHERE'S EDDIE. Jalal Jemison, dir. 10 min.
8 PM ALEX GIBNEY (ENRON, THE SMARTEST PEOPLE IN THE ROOM) SPEAKS. Q&A. An Emmy and Grammy-winning writer/director/producer, his credits include LIGHTNING IN A BOTTLE, the story of Antoine Fuqua. In his latest project he took on Enron, the Houston based energy firm that became the public face of corporate malfeasance, and told the inside story of one of history's greatest business scandals.
9 PM STREET FIGHT Covers the turbulent campaign of Cory Booker, a 32 year old Rhodes Scholar/Yale Law graduate running for mayor of Newark, NJ against Sharpe James, the four-term incumbent twice his age. An urban David and Goliath story, the film chronicles the young man's struggle against the city's entrenched political machine. "The best American political doc since 1993's War Room." The Washington Post. Marshall Curry, dir. 86 min. Doc.
Complimentary wine throughout the evening.
Featured photographer KRISTY LAURICELLA. ABATTOIR is a photographic essay that follows several workers at a traditional Kosher slaughterhouse during an average day at the job. Atypical of exhibitions concerning such subjects, the photos are without political perspective and concern themselves more with the colorful people who work at the Abattoir rather than the controversial task they perform. Photographs on display in the upstairs foyer of The Forum Theatre throughout the festival. B/W.
SOURCE: The last picture show 2005