BY DEAN MOSES
In the last few issues we have brought you exclusive reviews, interviews, and photographs from the Tribeca Film Festival. This week we are wrapping up our coverage with some of the best films we have yet to highlight. Consider this our shout out. So, sit back, grab your popcorn and get ready to keep an eye out for these titles when they hit theaters, steaming services, and physical media.
This documentary follows Chelsea Manning, famed U.S solider who leaked classified material to the public. At face value this piece may sound like a hyped-up recap on this controversial figure’s life, which most of us are already aware of. However, Chelsea XY goes into far more depth than that. The truly remarkable sections of the film take place after the story we all know about and picks up after her release from prison. The cameras trail Chelsea as she struggles to re-enter society, the difficulty of freedom after a long incarceration, not to mention an influx of abuse through social media from people who dis-agree with the ideals she represents. This documentary does not focus on the past, it evaluates the present and looks to the future, something we can all appreciate no matter our political leanings.
Wild Rose is all about following one’s passion, one’s dream. Living as a single parent supported only by her mother, Rose-Lynn (Jessie Buckley) resides in a small English town. The problem is she yearns to sing—not just any music—she yearns to sing country music right out of Nashville. As a native Englishman myself, I can attest to the fact that many of my fellow Brits aren’t very sympathetic to artistic hunger. So, alone she toils day after day as a cleaning lady, but the dream to sing never leaves her.
This unbridled passion for something more than the lot in life she has been given sends her on a journey which leads her to America, but even when she has her desires within her grasp, she must decide if it is worth losing what she already has.
There is something magical about childish adventures, a theme captured to an almost perfect degree in the tales of Stephen King, such as It, Dreamcatcher, and The Body aka Stand by Me. Low Tide rekindles some of this flare thanks to its well-acted, adolescent protagonists. This group of teens rob holidaymakers’ vacation homes in the Jersey Shore. Yet when one of the boys gets injured, a younger brother is recruited into their fold. Soon after the two siblings discover what appears to be antique coins hidden beneath some floorboards; in an attempt to keep their findings a secret from their fellow thieves, they bury the treasure on a small island. What begins as childish hijinks soon transforms into life-threatening danger as word of the gold begins to spill to unwanted ears. The concoction of nail-biting tension and youthful wonder works well here in creating a dynamic atmosphere that will keep viewers hooked until the climatic curtain call.
Clearly inspired by the works of David Lynch, this is a surreal thriller that is likely to either be-muse or inspire. Set in Britain during an unspecified time period, we follow the owners of a red dress, oh and it just so happens to be haunted—bringing misfortune to whoever owns it. The narrative here is anything but traditional. Viewers will find equal parts horror and comedy, not to mention a take on surrealism that Salvador Dali would scratch his head at. In my opinion the whole affair is delight-fully charming, a true wacky masterpiece that one can re-watch on countless occasions in hopes of deciphering its underlining mess-ages, if there are any.
The Hot Zone
A scientific television show currently airing on National Geographic and based on real cases of the Ebola virus. Grounded in reality, The Hot Zone aims to both educate and entertain. Tracking the initial moments from when the disease first become known to the medical field, all the way to the subsequent measures taken in contain it; this series manages to make technical jargon and a somewhat morbid subject matter engrossing. This is in thanks—in large part—to the excellent writing and magnificent performances, which include the likes of seasoned actors and actresses Noah Emmer, Liam Cunningham, Julianna Margulies, and James D’Arcy. The Hot Zone is a thrilling and terrifying ride documenting a deadly virus that still infects thousands.
Year after year, the Tribeca Film Festival has proven that it is a hub for all kinds of entertainment, as we have shown these last few weeks. I hope you have enjoyed our coverage, until next year.
Photos by Dean Moses