Tag Archives | SIFF 2008


SIFF Take: SIFF Interviews John Waters

On Tuesday afternoon, John Waters was interviewed by SIFF’s Carl Spence before a screening of his mediocre comedy Cecil B. Demented. Although Spence was a lousy interviewer (“Are you sure you don’t remember any salacious stories about Kathleen Turner from Serial Mom?”), Waters is a great person to quote. Here are some of the funny […]

Continue Reading

SIFF Take: Mr. Big

Mr. Big is a code name for a Canadian police operation where an undercover officer pretends to be a powerful crime lord to get suspects to confess to crimes they are investigating. It is also the title of one of the best films to play at SIFF this year. A documentary by former TV news […]

Continue Reading

SIFF Take: Young People F***ing

Young People Fucking. What a subtle title for a film. There is no ambiguity as to what this movie is about. Here’s the plot: there are five separate story lines about five twenty or thirty-something couples who, well, you know. The movie desperately wants to be a sophisticated sex comedy. The five couples’ stories are […]

Continue Reading

SIFF 2008: A conversation with the stars of The Wrecking Crew

One of my favorite films from the Seattle International Film Festival so far has been The Wrecking Crew a documentary about the legendary studio musicians from Los Angeles who recorded thousands and thousands of songs, mostly during the 1960s. The film was directed by Denny Tedesco, whose late father Tommy, who along with drummer Hal […]

Continue Reading

SIFF Take: A Wink and a Smile

Miss Indigo Blue teaches a Seattle-based, 6-week course of burlesque dancing. A Wink and a Smile is a 90 minute documentary that follows 10 students of this class from last fall. Throughout the course, the pupils develop their own on-stage persona and it culminates with a final recital at the Rendezvous. The students in the […]

Continue Reading

SIFF '08: week one

Following an auspicious opening weekend (well, not counting Battle in Seattle), my Memorial Day got off to a decidedly inauspicious start with a convoluted, drag-ass French psycho-thriller called Heartbeat Detector, starring Mathieu Amalric (of much better films like Kings & Queen and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) as a corporate psychologist who stumbles upon […]

Continue Reading

SIFF Take: Ask Not; Heavy Metal in Baghdad

The military’s infamous “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is, according to a policy expert interviewed in the new documentary Ask Not, “a policy in search of a rationale”. Moreover, it’s counterproductive, irrational and it harms national security. Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is, to put it bluntly, bullshit. By trying to illustrate this obvious injustice, filmmaker Johnny […]

Continue Reading

SIFF Take: Elite Squad

Elite Squad takes place in the late 1990s in Rio just a few months prior to a visit from the Pope. His Holiness decided that he wants to stay in an area close to a notorious ghetto. Rio's elite police force, the BOPE, must rid the area of a notorious drug dealer before the visit. Nascimento […]

Continue Reading

SIFF: 4 days down, 21 to go

Michelle Rodriguez was inebriated on opening night! (And I mean before the "gala"!) And that was one the two thrills I can report about SIFF 2008's first evening, the other being outgoing NWFF Executive Director Michael Siewerath's beautiful acceptance speech after Greg Nickels presented him the 2008 Mayor's Award for Outstanding Achievement in film. Otherwise, […]

Continue Reading

SIFF 2008: Opium: Diary of a Madwoman

Opium: Diary of a Madwoman is a uniquely unpleasant and difficult film to watch. It is slow-paced and more than a few scenes are difficult to view without looking away. The film is also a brilliant character study of two individuals in a mutually exploitative relationship. It explores big ideas and is morally ambiguous. Gizella […]

Continue Reading