The Los Angeles Film Festival kicked off Wednesday, and so did our very own deadCENTER Film Festival in downtown Oklahoma City. Celebrating its 15th year with screenings of 100 films produced in 2014 and 2015, it’s more than a night at the movies. Discussion panels and appearances by actors, directors and producers give us a sneak peek into the world of movie making, while dance parties and gatherings create a fun atmosphere for making new friends. These films are currently traveling festival circuits and are not yet available anywhere else. These are our picks for narrative and documentary features, and a few short films you won’t want to miss.
Hollis 95 min, OK
Screenwriter and director Sonny Priest gives us the story of Hollis, a young man in rural Oklahoma who worked hard to earn a scholarship to a well-regarded private university, but doesn’t want to leave behind his disabled brother with their abusive father.
7:00 p.m. Harkins MidFirst Theater, also 12:00 p.m. Saturday, Harkins Williams Theater
The Real Enemy 53 min, OK
Last September, while Oklahomans chose sides on the freedom of speech controversy over a satanic mass held at a publicly-owned venue, local videographers Tate James and Daniel Giles Helm interviewed performers, protestors and Civic Center employees, getting behind the scenes footage of the mass and exorcists from Deliverance Ministries. The result is their first feature documentary, The Real Enemy, debuted at Ethnografilm Fest in Paris earlier this year. Now they’re ready to hold up the mirror to OKC. "By the end, you can see that it's two sides of the same coin battling it off," said Helm in a recent interview. This film does contain blasphemy and profanity.
9:45 p.m. Harkins MidFirst Theater, also 3:00 p.m. Saturday at the same location
Gloria 126 min, Mexico
Gloria Trevi is Mexico’s Madonna. At the height of her career, the pop idol took a hiatus from performing to serve prison time in Brazil for her unwitting role in a pornographic ring built upon the dreams of young female wannabe pop stars. Christian Keller directs Sabina Berman’s biopic about Trevi’s life. The nationwide film release coincides with Trevi’s 2015 U.S. tour. She plays Dallas September 19.
7:15 p.m. Devon Energy Auditorium, 333 W. Sheridan Ave.
City of Gold 91 min, CA
Los Angeles restaurant critic Jonathan Gold tours his beloved city with director Laura Gabbert, visiting restaurants and chefs for whom he has made the world a much brighter place. An urban philosopher and Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, Gold tells it like it is. Film critic Amy Nicholson, a Los Angeles resident and University of Oklahoma Film and Media Studies graduate, gives a profound review in the Village Voice, including some background on Gold.
3:15 p.m. Harkins Inasmuch Theater, also 12:30 p.m. Sunday at OKC Museum of Art
The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution 116 min, USA
Vanguard covers the early 60s birth and rise of the Panthers, the FBI infiltration in the 1970s and their eventual demise. Stanley Nelson is an accomplished director and documentarian who has dreamed of making this project a reality since his film start in the 1970s. It received congratulatory approval in this review by the New York Times after its February debut at the MoMA’s Documentary Fortnight.
6:00 p.m. Inasmuch Theater at Harkins, also 8:00 p.m. Friday at OKC Museum of Art
Mekko 84 min, OK
Oklahoma is proud of award-winning director Sterlin Harjo (Four Sheets To The Wind, This May Be The Last Time), a young Seminole filmmaker and OU FMS graduate from Holdenville. You’ll want to arrive early for a chance to see the Oklahoma premiere of Mekko, a dramatic feature about a native man who returns to Tulsa after twenty years in prison. It premieres at the L.A. Film Fest Friday, June 12.
8:15 p.m. Harkins Williams Theater
And now for the short selections! Check into these well-curated film panels: Deep Impact Shorts, Okie Not So Short Shorts, and Okie Shorts, featuring “Calls To Okies” an 18-minute documentary by director Brad Beesley (Okie Noodling, Sweethearts of the Prison Rodeo, The Creek Runs Red) about the wildly popular and hilarious Park Grubbs prank calls.
The OneSix8 explores meaningful arts and entertainment options in Central Oklahoma for the KGOU audience. Our calendar of community events features more film, music, theater, arts and outdoors activities, along with educational and volunteer opportunities. We welcome submissions to the calendar for possible listing and on-air announcement, as a service to non-profit and community groups, local artists and musicians.
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