Film/TV » Film Features

Short Cuts

Three Memphis film organizations are moving forward with intriguing programming and new partners.



Time Warp Drive-In: Dusk To Dawn Spaghetti Western Buffet

Mike McCarthy's and Black Lodge Video's Time Warp Drive-In series continues to grow in popularity, with killer slates of genre and exploitation films coming monthly to the Malco Summer Drive-In. This Saturday, the spotlight turns west. The term "spaghetti Western" dates to the 1960s, when European companies, hoping to break into the American market, made cheap Westerns that were like fun-house mirror versions of their source material. Fortunately, the movement empowered Sergio Leone, whose visual poetry and mystical streak created masterpieces such as 1966's The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, the three-hour epic of greed, betrayal, and gun-play that kicks off the program. This is essential viewing, not only because it helped kick off Clint Eastwood's career, or for Lee Van Cleef and Eli Wallach's equally incredible performances, but also for the master class in how scoring can pull a film's disparate elements together, put on by Ennio Moriconne. Van Cleef also kills in the Time Warp's third film, Death Rides a Horse. The middle film is Elvis' shot at the Western, Charro!, featuring an excellent, non-singing performance by the King.

If you're attending the Memphis International Rockabilly Festival on Saturday, you can get $2 off your admission to the Time Warp and to the Memphis Roller Derby Double Header.


2015 Outflix Film Festival Announces Lineup

It's only one month until the 2015 Outflix Film Festival hits the screens at Malco's Ridgeway Cinema Grill September 11th-17th. This year's lineup features a more international flavor than in times past, as well as some intriguing documentaries about LBGT life and pop culture.

The opening-night feature is the joint US-Taiwan production Baby Steps, by director Barney Cheng. When a Chinese gay man, who is out in America but closeted in Taiwan, decides to have a baby with his partner, his mother causes havoc by trying to control the process from the other side of the world. Also on opening night is the lesbian battle-of-the bands musical comedy Girltrash: All Night Long.

Highlights from Saturday include the acclaimed Kickstarter-funded Big Gay Love and the South-By-Southwest hit Naz & Maalik, about a pair of Muslim teen boys whose secrecy about their budding love affair runs afoul of FBI anti-terrorism surveillance. The big show on Sunday is looking to be the documentary Wonder Women! The Untold Story of American Superheroines, which has been garnering giddy acclaim on the festival circuit and will have an accompanying audience cosplay contest. Two other documentaries to look for are Tab Hunter Confidential, director Jeffrey Schwartz's portrait of the closeted 50s movie star hearthrob, and Cheryl Furjanic's Back On Board: Greg Louganis about the Olympic diving champion's struggles with injury and prejudice, which will close the festival.

Indie Memphis Partners with the Orpheum

Memphis' flagship festival is changing this year, moving away from Halloween weekend and expanding into an eight-day run. The festival's venues are expanding from Overton Square to the Orpheum Theatre's new Halloran Centre, which is currently nearing completion next to the historic venue at Main and Beale. The brand-new, 350-seat theater will be the site of the opening night films on November 3rd, and will continue to host the festival until it moves to Overton Square for a weekend of films on multiple screens from November 6th-8th, before returning to the Orpheum for the final two nights. "We'll be downtown during the week, and in Midtown during the weekend," interim Executive Director Ryan Watt says.

"The Indie Memphis Film Festival is an important part of the Memphis arts culture, and we are excited to welcome several of the festival's screenings to the new Centre", Orpheum President and CEO Pat Halloran. says "We're proud to be a part of this festival as it continues to put our community on the map as a hot spot for budding filmmakers."

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