Friday, July 30, 2010

David Whitney Philadelphia Independent Film Festival Interview

Sitting down at the Philadelphia Independent Film Festival 2010 with David Whitney, Director, Kandahar Break. The movie was a North American Premier and will be released in August. We discussed, briefly, being a first time Director, shooting in Pakistan, and how to motivate the crew in such harsh conditions amongst other subjects.

RT: 14:00 min
Language: English

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Screening: Let the Truth be Told. #UFF #PUFF #piff2011 #

Post: freeRADlab
Director: anonymous
Feature length

Lurking beneath the depths of every government conspiracy is a plot hatched by someone. This plot may lay in fact or fiction. At times it contained both. You can never be sure.

When the film we are about to screen was left for us, we initially were told not to screen it. We were told that the material was to much about the truth and that the the truth be told, the world would quake. What we are about to see is has never been publicly screened before.

Let the Truth be told.

... Philadelphia Independent Film Festival

A Witch is amongst us ... Bruja (Short) Directed by: Andres Peyrot. #UFF #PIFF2010

Underground Film Forum / Philadelphia Independent Film festival

Sean Hamilton
Benjamin Barnett

Screening -
Title: Bruja (Short)
Director: Andres Peyrot
Movie (IMDB) Site: BRUJA on IMDB

Andres Peyrot's stunning short film Bruja begins with a plane arriving in Panama City carrying Lorraine(Saundra Santiago), a broken, Americanized, woman, going through an emotional and tough divorce who is returning to Panama to be with her father. The story is told through sound as the camera jumps between vibrant images constructing a portrait of a bustling third world city and its people.

Easily distracted with her troubles, Lorraine is driving when she nearly hits a young woman crossing a busy intersection. She then pulls over and feeling shocked and perhaps a little bit nurturing, tells the girl to get in her car so she take her home. When they arrive where the girl lives, she does not speak other than saying she thinks it is the right place. An eerie feeling comes over Lorraine and then her nose suddenly starts to bleed. The girl, staring, takes out a cloth to wipe the running blood, slowly. "Agricia can help you" she says, and tells Lorraine to come back to pick her up the next day. The last thing she says is "You could be dead."

When Lorraine returns the next day the mysterious (despite being upbeat and currently dressed) girl takes her to a village outside of the city to a woman who tells her that someone has cast a spell on her and that it will eat her from the inside out and turn to cancer if she doesn't get it out. The woman tells her they will do it in two days.

Lorraine must then decide whether or not to go through with the shamanistic treatment she has been spontaneously offered, which would go against her self proclaimed profile as a "pragmatic woman." The inner struggle is It becomes apparent that there could be danger involved, and she finds herself traveling on a boat deep into the jungle (one of the film's most visually defining moments) to a world almost completely removed from her own where her survival is in the hands of strange native people she can only trust are trying to help her through practices she can not understand.

Although Bruja is a worth a look just for its unique and exotic setting alone, both technically and visually the film is a standout; and every department from cast to camera to art direction to location scouting to wardrobe and everything in between deserves a great deal of the credit for this impressive accomplishment.

The story (inspired by true events) can appear thin to the needy film goer, but it certainly has clarity of story; brilliantly paced and constantly changing speeds, and is clearly driven by deliberate soundscape including an cool original score of stripped down Latin music.

This is a film about an approach to healing, and the journey a woman embarks upon to receive it, albeit an unexpected one. It humors the comforting notion that there is a place out there that if we can just get to will absolve us of our problems, though perhaps in some cases the greater part of the healing takes place along the way.

TRT: 19 minutes
Language: Spanish w/ English subtitles

Friday, July 23, 2010

The Ninjasas ... Live at the Media Bureau / Philadelphia Independent Film festival 2010.

See more at MediaBureau215

See you in the studios ...

Predilection by Mario Garcia. A Bank Robbery for the ages... Philadelphia Independent Film Festival

Philadelphia Independent Film festival - Philadelphia Premier...

Review: Amy Leonard for the Media Bureau.

Predilection, a fast-paced action short directed by Marcio Garcia, delivers stunning visual effects and production value rarely found in the realm of independent short films. In Rio de Janeiro, a team is assembled to execute a large-scale bank robbery. A carefully implemented operation plays out, but not without its share of action, excitement, and suspense. The team consists of a range of personalities and backgrounds, all which show their true colors and talents under pressure.

Packed with gunshots, car chases, and Matrix-like slow motion shots, Predilection delivers an exciting plot complete with interesting characters and top-notch direction. Featuring the city of Rio de Janeiro as the scenic backdrop, constant action and anticipation keep the narrative moving forward. The tension lasts from the opening sequence to the last moments of the film, where one final revelation is in store.

Garcia’s high-energy action Predilection provides a short but thrilling ride chronicling a large-scale, expertly executed bank robbery. Or is it?

Origin: Brazil
TR: 15:00

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Philadelphia Independent Film festival North American Premier... Feature: Kandahar Break

Philadelphia Independent Film festival North American Premier...

Feature: Kandahar
Review: Amy Leonard for the Media Bureau.

David Whitney's Kandahar Break weaves politics, love, and betrayal into an action-packed thriller set in Taliban-ruled Afghanistan. Amid the breathtaking landscape surrounding Kandahar, British engineer Richard Lee is hired by the Taliban to clear mine fields in conflict-ridden Afghanistan. Following the death of his wife, Richard falls in love with his interpreter, Jamilah, despite strict Taliban law forbidding extramarital relations. When the affair is discovered by a local police chief, Richard must escape to Pakistan before the Taliban kills him. As he makes the perilous and harrowing trek to the border and searches for safety, Richard gains a deeper understanding of himself while learning who he can and cannot trust.

A revealing portrait of a country in crisis, Kandahar Break delves into conflicts and issues that plague Afghanistan. David Whitney exposes the oppression of the Afghan people by the Taliban, whose rule is characterized by violence, oppression, and ruthlessness. Under Taliban law, women are viewed as little more than objects, and rights such as fair trial do not exist. After working with the Taliban, Richard is forced to face the brutal consequences of their rule firsthand. He must confront guilt and regret as he takes a physical and emotional journey across the desert.

Kandahar Break encapsulates the beauty and tragedy of Afghanistan's people. Amidst a corrupt government and violent surroundings, glimpses of friendship, humanity, and love are offered and a small but definite shred of justice can be grasped.

Language: English (British)

Monday, July 5, 2010

North American release of Kandahar Break at Philadelphia Independent Film Festival ...

Kandahar Break (2009)

This is an excellent movie that received a great response at the festival this year. Tight film making, excellent acting, and a sure fire story line that makes for great suspense, love and intrigue set in a pre / post 9/11 world. NYC will be the site of it's theatrical release in September and we'll be there.

Speaking with David Whitney at the fest exposed us to some real life stories about shooting in Pakistan, working in a Taliban influenced environment, and a lot more. We'll have a full review soon.

Shaun Dooley , Dean Andrews , David Whitney Unrated DVD

Released on September 21, 2010