Tuesday, April 19, 2016

FIRST POSTER RELEASED FOR SPRING ROM-COM WHO’S JENNA…?



The first poster for the highly-anticipated rom-com Who’s Jenna…?, starring Tracey Birdsall and Bill Sorvino, has been released.

Who’s Jenna…? is a riotously funny but super sweet rom-com about a man whose new girlfriend (AOFF award winner Tracey Birdsall) looks suspiciously like a famous porn star.

Jonathan Burke (Bill Sorvino), a successful financial advisor, starts dating Jenna Casey (Birdsall), an accomplished lawyer. Jonathan’s best friend, Andy Roma (Joseph D’Onofrio) is convinced she looks exactly like a famous adult film star.

Not only does Jonathan have to deal with his friend’s nonsense, but he also has to juggle his relationship with his boss (Garry Pastore), who is possibly black-mailing him, and is Jenna’s brother in-law.

A case of mistaken identity creates a whirling storm of comical chaos in Jonathan’s world.
Joining Birdsall are The Soprano’s Vincent Pastore, Bill Sorvino, Joseph D’Onofrio, Vic Dibitetto and Garry Pastore.

Who’s Jenna…?, written and directed by Thomas Baldinger, is a 624 Productions production.



Wednesday, April 6, 2016

CALIFORNIA WINTER - Film Review


Predatory lending practices by the big banks, coupled with the financial illiteracy of millions of people led to a massive housing crisis in 2009. Writer-Director Odin Ozdil’s CALIFORNIA WINTER tells the story of the housing crisis from the perspective of the people in one Latino community.

CALIFORNIA WINTER stars Golden Globe Winner Gina Rodriguez (Jane the Virgin) features alongside Michael Ironside (The Flash), A Martinez (Longmire), Rutina Wesley (True Blood), Walter Perez (The Avengers), Erik Avari (Hachi: A Dog’s Tale), and Elizabeth Dominguez.

Clara Morales (Elizabeth Dominguez) is a young determined realtor set on making as many sales as possible by luring in clients to take out subprime loans.

Subprime loans are a type of loan that is offered at a rate above prime to individuals who do not qualify for prime rate loans. Quite often, subprime borrowers are typically turned away from traditional lenders because of their low credit ratings or other factors that suggest that they have a reasonable chance of defaulting on the debt repayment.

During the course of the film, Clara claims she did not understand subprime loans. Is it true that she is that naive or is she lacking ethics and is motivated by personal financial gain? Clara’s nescience is apparent during conversations she has with her neighbor, Marcy Sanchez (Rutina Wesley), especially when Marcy is faced with eviction due to foreclosure.

It is only when her own father Papi (A Martinez), stands to lose his home due to Clara’s recommendation to refinance his home to pay for her mother’s medical bills, that Clara shows any sign of remorse or recognition.

Papi has his own flaws, he is stubborn and negligent of his finances and health. He wallows in grief over the passing of his wife. If it was not for a chance moment that he finds some hidden mail meant for him would he know how close he was to losing his home.

Clara tries to steal clients from her co-worker Camila Vasquez (Laura CerĂ³n). Attempting to make money to save her family home does not justify Clara’s actions. The repercussions for her unethical behavior do not even amount to a slap on the wrist and I feel Camila’s character showed a considerable amount of restraint.

In a further attempt to save the family home, Clara goes to the bank to negotiate a refinancing of the loan. At the bank, Clara catches the eye of Carlos Gonzalez (Walter Perez) a bank employee who is tasked with adding to the bank’s bottom line. Carlos and Clara begin dating. When the bank changes it’s lending practices, Carlos is forced to put their new relationship to the test by telling Clara and Papi, they owe more money to the bank than originally stated.

Though a majority of the blame for the housing bubble should fall squarely on the shoulders of banks, real-estate agents and government, there is without a doubt a certain percentage of fault resting on people for not educating themselves about undertaking certain types of debt obligations.

CALIFORNIA WINTER shows the realities of people losing homes to foreclosure. Sheriffs coming to people’s front doors to remove them, by force if necessary. Squatters living in vacant, foreclosed homes. Made in a mere 16 days on an ultra low budget, CALIFORNIA WINTER is a true independent film. The effort put in by the cast and crew is evident. A film worth watching to remind us all of what being fiscally misinformed or uniformed can lead to.


Saturday, April 2, 2016

Victor Frankenstein (2015) - Guest Review



When audiences think of Frankenstein, they focus first on Mary Shelley, acclaimed author and mother of the 1818 horror classic. Then a vision comes to life: A dark and stormy night, fraught with intense flashes of lightening and maniacal laughter. When the storm passes, a monster of murderous conviction is born.

The newly released-to-video Victor Frankenstein 2015, original screenplay by the richly talented Max Landis (American Ultra), takes the time and care to reimagine the elements of the original story in a brave new light with daring leaps and bounds. 


He manages effortlessly to reach into the very heart and soul of DR. Frankenstein, giving life and reason to his inexplicable experiments. The movie delves into the deep, more realistic scientific experimentation with a nod to real-life Frankenstein Robert Cornish, who originated the teeter-board and managed with success to reanimate a dead dog.


Directed by Paul McGuigan, (BBC's Sherlock, episodes 1-5), this modern adaption is sure to woo audiences with its fresh take on Igor, Dr. Frankenstein's deformed assistant, and the tyrannical Inspector Turpin. Igor begins his journey into the wild world of Dr. Frankenstein when the love of his life, the beautiful Lorelei falls from the swing in a freak circus accident. The mysterious attendee, Victor Frankenstein steps in help, but quickly concludes that the poor acrobat has internal injuries and cannot be saved.


Little does he know that Igor is a blossoming physician who quickly and cunningly devises a life-saving trick to save the young woman's life. Victor has found his better half and will fight to the death to claim his prize. This is only the beginning. Before long, the twisted creature Igor is transformed into an upstanding gentleman as never before seen in a Frankenstein film to date.


With a harmonious blend of horror, love, friendship, and even a healthy dose of humour, this movie is sure to entertain fans of all genre. Scottish sensation James McAvoy (who recently won Best Actor for his role in the London stage play The Ruling Class), gives a heartfelt portrayal of the spitting-mad Victor Frankenstein with unrelenting conviction and a panache all his own.

Daniel Radcliffe's talents are tried and true as the loveable, bubbling Igor. It takes great courage to step into the shoes of an already established character like Igor and make him new and unique. Together, alongside their savvy co-stars, Jessica Brown Findlay (Downtown Abby), Andrew Scott (BBC's Sherlock), and Freddie Fox (The Three Musketeers), they make magic come alive!

-Ann Rivet



Jane Two - A Novel, Review

Jane TwoJane Two by Sean Patrick Flanery

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I had the honor of being invited to read Jane Two as an early reviewer. For years I had hoped Sean would write a novel. Finally the dream has come to fruition, the novel is in my hands.

Jane Two, Sean Patrick Flanery's first novel is a vivid tapestry of love, friendship, and emotional growth. We all have our "larger than life" childhood memories, our first love, our first fight. Sean is a gifted story teller. He expertly weaves a tale including both appealing and intensely detestable characters and mixes in a wonderful dose of treasured memories. Jane Two is a tale I will read reiteratively.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

THE 'MUST SEE' MOVIE OF THE YEAR - "CALIFORNIA WINTER" - THE 'PEOPLE'S VERSION' OF "THE BIG SHORT



A companion piece to topical, award-winning triumph The Big Short (though, as opposed to it, this is seen through the eyes of ‘the people’) California Winter – available this month On Demand from Indie Rights – tells of an ambitious young real estate agent who must fight to save her integrity and her father’s home from foreclosure when the risky loan she advised him on send his home into foreclosure.


Golden Globe Winner Gina Rodriguez (Jane the Virgin) features alongside Michael Ironside (The Flash), A Martinez (Longmire), Rutina Wesley (True Blood), Walter Perez (The Avengers), Erik Avari (Hachi : A Dog’s Tale), and Elizabeth Dominguez in an Odin Ozdil film.


THE NEW TRAILER





SYNOPSIS

At the height of the housing boom of 2005, Mexican-American, Clara Morales is a real estate agent full of ambition, building a career by enticing Latino clients to take out subprime loans that she doesn’t understand. She even convinces her cautious father, Papi, to refinance the family home to pay for her mother’s medical bills.

When the 2008 crash hits, Papi, now grieving the death of his wife, is devastated when his home goes into foreclosure – and he holds Clara responsible. As he lets his own health slide, Clara must now fight to prove herself to him by saving her childhood home and winning back the trust of her community. At the same time, she must outwit a devious coworker to hold onto her job at her a downsizing workplace.

One positive aspect to her life is a burgeoning romance with her bank representative, another first-generation Mexican named Carlos. However, with her father’s eviction date around the corner, Clara makes a reckless play to acquire a new client in the hope of paying off Papi’s home. This backfires and she loses her job and her new romantic relationship becomes even more complicated. Saving the home now seems more impossible than ever. Under these circumstances, all the experiences common to being a 20-something are exponentially more difficult for Clara. Anxiety becomes the new norm.

Ultimately, Clara and her father realize that although they have made some bad decisions along the way, they need to make peace and put the past behind them, and they enact a final and desperate plan to save their home and face off against the local sheriff.

A timely, heartfelt story about realizing how personal choices and family can be stronger than any force working against you.








Monday, March 21, 2016

THE HOBBIT'S William Kircher joins the cast of ROGUE WARRIOR - New images released



William Kircher (THE HOBBIT) has joined the cast of the science-fiction actioner ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER, which wraps this week under the director of Neil Johnson.

Kircher (Bifur the dwarf in Peter Jackson's HOBBIT films) plays Dr. Johnson Additionally, his voice can be heard throughout the movie as The Scourge.

Says director Neil Johnson, "For the first time in my career, I can truly say that the whole film is crammed with truly amazing actors, no one disappoints, but now that we have William Kircher, he is the icing on a very large cake.
Tracey Birdsall and William Kircher light the screen up with an amazing chemistry. I was so enthralled watching these two acting titans butt-heads on camera that I forgot we were shooting a movie and got dragged into the scene.
There is a scene at the end of the film where Tracey and William oppose each other and truly make for an amazing moment. I am so looking forward to having these two work together again in the future. I think the only reason we got a busy actor of William’s stature was that he really wanted to work opposite Tracey Birdsall, one of the few good looking actresses in Hollywood WHO CAN ACTUALLY ACT!!!!”

ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER will be released later this year.



Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Deadwood’s Larry Cedar in the film you’ll be raving about by year’s end, She Sings to the Stars



..You may find the images and the vision coming back to mind well after you've finished watching. Watch on the biggest screen you can get at: in this movie, the size of the night sky matters."  - Sam Waterston, Actor (The Newsroom)


Deadwood’s Larry Cedar “is amazing” (actor Sam Waterston) in Jennifer Corcoran’s She Sings to the Stars, premiering March 19 at New York’s Queens World Film Festival.
Without water, a Native American grandmother continues to inhabit the desert, both ancient and alien. Her half-Hispanic grandson rushes to 'make it big'. A faded magician finds himself lost at her doorstep.
Written and directed by Jennifer Corcoran and produced by Circeo Films, and starring Larry Cedar, Fannie Loretto, Larry Cedar and Jesus Mayorga, She Sings to the Stars was named Best Film at the Toronto Independent Film Festival and won Best Actor and Audience Award at the Vermont Film Festival.

Expected wide release late 2016.



PREMIERING IN NEW YORK MARCH 19 AT QUEENS WORLD FILM FESTIVAL. TICKET LINK HERE.


Synopsis
Mabel is a Native American grandmother who lives alone, tending her drought-ravaged corn in the desert Southwest. Her half-Hispanic grandson, Third, dreams of making it big in LA, but his plans change dramatically when he comes to his grandmother’s house to collect traditional dolls he hopes to sell for a high price. Lyle is a down-at-the-heel magician from LA traveling with a white rabbit, the promise of a gig and a life-long dream to be able to magically disappear. When his radiator boils over, he is stranded outside Mabel’s house. Both men must yield to the timeless rhythm of Mabel and the expansive desert to discover a capacity greater than imagined.




TRAILER