Posts Tagged With: indie films

Pink Houses, Senators and Abuse of Power

Two important indie films that the politicians don’t want you to see are currently in theaters.

The first is Little Pink House, a true story of the abuse of eminent domain by the government. Also check out John Stossel’s report on this legalized larceny.

The second is Chappaquiddick, on the events surrounding the death Mary Jo Kopechne in a car driven by Senator Ted Kennedy.

Someday history will look at that era as when abuse of power was institutionalized at an unimaginable level. There were a whole series of dark events like this in the 1960s. Only a few days ago, we read again how the family of Martin Luther King, Jr. believes James Earl Ray was framed for MLK’s assassination. Considering that, it’s disingenuous to continue to call this a conspiracy theory.

Some may ask, “Why does it matter all these years later?”

It matters because, then and now, people like to look the other way even when they know the official stories don’t square. They want to believe so hard that their leaders are so much better than them, that they allow themselves to be distracted and convinced what is wrong is right.

We let the government become what it is. And they have done far worse than the daily drama they put on for us — the fake angst and hand wringing against each other, only to have nothing change. They divide us with the frivolous so we never truly bother to look behind the curtain.

And as long as we are afraid to rip that curtain down, nothing will change and many will escape justice.

Categories: History | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Indie Film Fest 3

Last time I posted about films, I profiled some end of the world pics. Before that, a grab bag of everything from sci-fi to true stories.

This time I want to point you to Midnight Special, a story about a very special kid about to learn his destiny. This is from the director from the equally subtle Take Shelter, a new take on the end of the world.  Okay, 10 Cloverfield Lane is really not indie, but this sorta sequel to Cloverfield is small-scale and smart enough to deserve the title.

And then this:


Yes, I know, an X-Men Universe film is not low-budget nor indie, but after being burned-out on superhero films, this looks like one to change my mind.

Sometimes, less is more.

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Indie Film Fest 2: The End

It’s been awhile since my last Indie Film Fest, but the indie film industry continues to flourish. Whether limited release or the direct-to-home market, the industry has benefited from digital platforms like Netflix and Amazon. This is not unlike how publishing and music has been revolutionized by technology, though the expense of filmmaking makes a bit more of a challenge. Nevertheless, these films often attract established stars and provide a refreshing counter to big budget spectacles (not that many of those aren’t great as well). Here are three post-apocalyptic choices that, like the best in the genre, explore the good and evil that simmers all around us:

In The Last Survivors, we find 17-year old Kendal trying to survive in the parched-out valley where her family once lived. Of course, there is a self-proclaimed “baron” who is trying to claim all land (and remaining water) so his group can survive. A very visual and well-thought out film which allows you to overlook some minor script or direction issues. A small-scale version of Mad Max or The Book of Eli with the classic post-apocalyptic story of the best and worst of people.

Snowpiercer finds the world’s survivors locked in a new ice age. Ironically, it was caused by the world’s governments trying to “fix” the climate – a little warning missed by most reviewers. If you can overlook a few plot issues – such as if they can keep this train running, can’t they figure out a stationary location? Who’s out there maintaining the tracks? – there are some great themes in here. Some see it as depicting class warfare, but it can seen as a warning over oppression and government meddling.

Z for Zachariah is a more subtle film. Not driven by typical action, but driven forward by the interactions and decisions of three survivors of the end of the world. Ann has survived the fallout in a shielded valley, alone for some time until two others stumble through. I think many reviewers failed to put themselves into the mind of the characters and what they would be thinking and decisions they would make, much like in The Road. It is also, at one level, a modern spin on Adam and Eve in a Garden of Eden.


Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Indie Film Fest

I usually don’t talk much about films here, but they are written by someone. I like the big budget spectacles as much as anyone. They utilize the big screen format for all it’s worth. Yet, there are plenty of smaller-scale, limited release films that deserve viewing. Many are lower budget, but don’t look that way (thanks to technology being in the reach of just about anyone). So here’s my first selection of interesting films you may not have heard about. I’m not saying these are all Oscar winners or something that will change your life. They all, however, have managed to do one thing or another just a little different, or better, than what you may be used to.

In Another Earth, a second Earth appears in the sky. A complete duplicate, it’s implications for those on the first Earth are life-changing. Upside Down is in a similar vein, but here is a classic tale of forbidden love between two separated by class, but now also worlds, in what is a visual feast.

An Invisible Sign and Robot & Frank are both stories of families with histories and problems and how it shapes the children that come from them. See how they grow and overcome. Just a bit off-center, but are we any different?

The Debt is not based on history, but you’ll think this perfectly created Cold War story was ripped from headlines. Machine Gun Preacher is a true story, and an important one about the terrible world of Sudan, so often forgotten. Where are the world’s governments in stopping this genocide?

Trollhunter comes from Norway, and while some things are lost in translation, and it starts slow, there’s a lot going for this picture. A strong entry in the “found footage” genre and impressive effects for a small film. In a similar pic, Apollo 18, answers the question, “Why did we stop going to the Moon?” Playing into conspiracy theories, this found-footage film managed strong production values they make it seem like the “lost” sequel to Apollo 13.

Categories: Fiction | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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