Newport Beach Film Festival: Films to Watch

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Newport Beach Film Festival: Films to Watch

Outside the Lido Theatre in Newport Beach, Calif. for the Closing Night Film, “Part of Water.

Outside the Lido Theatre in Newport Beach, Calif. for the Closing Night Film, “Part of Water."

Marco Morales

Outside the Lido Theatre in Newport Beach, Calif. for the Closing Night Film, “Part of Water."

Marco Morales

Marco Morales

Outside the Lido Theatre in Newport Beach, Calif. for the Closing Night Film, “Part of Water."

Marco Morales and Susana Leon

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The 20th annual Newport Beach Film Festival hit the red carpet last week and filmmakers had the chance to showcase their films to eager audiences.

This year’s film festival went from April 25 through May 2, at various locations around Newport Beach including Fashion Island and The Triangle. Newport Beach Film Festival is an event where filmmakers showcase their latest work to an audience and receive feedback from viewers.

Filmmakers are able to submit their work onto the Newport Beach Film Festival’s website where they have a chance to premiere their film in front of an audience that will give them ratings.

Before the film starts, you are given a piece of paper where you are supposed to rate the movie from poor to excellent and at the end of the film festival, the best movie is selected based on the ratings given by the audience.

On Opening Day, April 25, the film “Deadtectives” was showcased at the Triangle. This horror comedy film is about a crew of ghost hunters desperate for their reality show to become a success then challenged to check out an ominous mansion in Mexico where the Mayan spirits roam free inside the infamous mansion. There they must face whatever spirits there in order to save their show from dying. The film is filled with comedy, suspense, and even emotional roller coaster in one. I recommend to those who enjoy comedic horror movies.

I personally thought this film was goofy. Although I am not a fan of horror movies “Deadtectives” is a horror comedy that is hilarious which made it less scary. The cast interacts really well with each other with their banter. The special effects are very graphic and gruesome which is the only scary part.

The following day, The Lot at Fashion Island showcased “Boom.” A documentary on a 60s Rock n’ Roll band that goes by the name of “The Sonics” influenced many popular rock bands such as Pearl Jam. The band was based in Tacoma, Washington where they formed during their teenage years. The film focused on “The Sonics” legacy 50 years later after their uprising.

After the film, it was followed up by a brief Q&A with the director of the documentary, Jordan Albertsen. He mentioned that he “did not expect the final product of the film to go as it did” although he was happy with how the film went.

The film provides an interesting insight on a band you may have never heard of but yet sounds very familiar. After watching the film, you might want to hear a lot more of The Sonics’ music even if you are not a Rock n’ Roll fan. This film may be probably one of the best music documentaries I have seen. Although there is no way yet to stream the film or watch it besides attending the film festival if you do get the chance to watch the film it is a must.

On closing day, The Lot showcased “Funke.” A film about legendary pasta chef, Evan Funke who went from walking away from his passion and very successful restaurant that led to a dark time in his life to coming back and opening up a new restaurant in the busy city of Los Angeles. The film documents Funke’s story on becoming a chef and pasta enthusiast as he is mentored by great pasta chefs. The film was supposed to be followed up by a Q&A by the director of the film but he did not arrive due to his unavailability.

Overall, the film was great. It had a very interesting story of Evan Funke’s background and the build-up of the opening of Funke’s restaurant in Los Angeles named “Felix.” For any pasta connoisseurs, this film will keep your eyes glued to the screen.

The closing day film, “Part of Water” was showcased at the Lido Theatre where it was followed up by an after party for the festival. The film was about the story of a fallen lifeguard, Ben Carlson who sacrificed his own life trying to save someone else from drowning. The show was sold out and local news stations arrived to cover the event.

The movie documents a great story of a local hero who took initiative and saved swimmer from dying. The movie gave great shots which enhanced the emotion and scenery of the film. The film did a great job of engaging with the viewers.

Here are the movies that we would recommend watching from best to last: “Part of Water”, “Boom”, “Funke”, and “Deadtectives”.