December 21, 2013 § Leave a comment

I have yet to see American Hustle, but based on advertising and editorial content swirling the world wide web–this 1970′s drama is a stunning resurrection of disco glamour, courtesy of none other than the power fashion house that is Gucci.

Here are a few images for you to salivate over before seeing the film.


Hair by Kristen Barry, Elizabeth Cecchini, Raul Hernandez and team seems worthy of being among Oscar 2014′s shortlist of makeup and hairstyling nominees.


Deep cut v necks, please do make a comeback.


I leave you with The Golden Filter ‘Look Me In The Eye’. Enjoy the weekend, my babies!

An Examination of Martin Scorsese’s Costumes

December 19, 2013 § 3 Comments

Like many directors, Scorsese keeps an interesting style continuity throughout his films.


In Goodfellas he used costumer Richard Bruno, known for his wardrobe work in Chinatown, Raging Bull and The Untouchables.

This film follows the rise and fall of the Lucchese crime family over a period from 1955 to 1980. Bruno’s stand out pieces, in my humble opinion, were in the following scene.

Henry and Karen’s early years: A 70’s ensemble of a leather jacket, polyester slacks and a classic button down seemed fitting for setting things straight with a neighbor.



Karen didn’t seem to mind, dressed in innocent and girlish pink pleated pants with a matching wool cardie.

“I gotta admit the truth, it turned me on.”




Being hailed as a close second best film of Scorsese’s according to one film critic, makes me yearn and ache to see this film so much more. It hits theaters on CHRISTMAS. But for now, let’s look at the garments provided by fashion house Armani.

Fuchsia mary janes, to die for.



Margot Robbie in a striped transparent black gown is sexy and it absolutely frames this new artists face. Isn’t she gorgeous? Can’t wait to see what this newcomer siren-on-the-screen has in store next.



Leo yachts in a classic casual Friday white polo and khaki number here. Cheers.



I leave you with this trailer. Enjoy.

The Pros of Converting to Digital From a Business Operations Perspective

November 21, 2012 § Leave a comment

I attended a screening of the film “Side By Side” which documents the very heated topic of the film industry’s digital conversion. In it, a number of mainstream directors such as Robert Rodriguez, George Lucas and James Cameron discuss the advantages of digital. Their takeaways include real time re-shooting as opposed to filming then reviewing in a screening room. Instant playback with digital recording saves production time and improves work creativity on set. DI Colorists can manipulate color saturation in very specific areas of scenes. Production crews benefit from not having to transport film to remote locations. So the creatives benefit, but so does production on set. As a former film festival organizer I see a huge advantage to converting to digital.
Let’s say you’re a filmmaker in Spain with one original copy of your 35mm film–in just a metal canister to protect it during its transport to the United States. This one thinner than cardboard can holds your life’s work, maybe your first film; maybe your Oscar contender worthy film and you have no choice but to ship that one piece of your life internationally, not 100% sure the plane won’t crash in the ocean or catch fire or who knows–hit a mountain. Your work may be lost forever.

Another scenario: You’re the organizer of a festival in charge of budgets (like me). You have films coming in from five Latin American and European countries like Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Chile or Spain. Shipment isn’t just costly but it’s risky so you have to spend on the shipment of large film canisters and secure insurance charges of 50 films (worst case scenario, but still). What if the plane goes down, what if the can is mishandled and let’s not mention the stress involved in the process. I’m exaggerating a little of course, but you get the point. Shipping a DVD instead is a much more secure, cost efficient and stress-free transaction for the organizer.

Screeners, the film previews, can and are being viewed online a lot now. During my last year at Cine+Mas I scouted a Chilean film by Nicolas Lopez titled “Que Pena Tu Vida” on Twitter of all places and asked the filmmaker to send a copy for consideration. He was super ahead of the game–sending me a link to the screener online. This might sound old school now but an entire seventeen months ago this seemed completely revolutionary. Just like a lot of technology, I mean we were barley introduced to the luxury of facetime on our iPhones way back then, remember?? It’s not that long ago, but so much has been upgraded in digital distribution since then. You can imagine how much more efficient the programming process is with this nifty upgrade. There is zero wait time to consider courting a filmmaker.

Day to day operations during the actual festival benefit immensely as well. Lugging around film canisters takes man power and skilled projectionists, which becomes a non-issue with feather-light, user-friendly DVDs. The new industry standard consolidates three parts of the budget. Costs for shipping/insurance, day-of transportation and projection–all almost eliminated–which is especially important for many non-profit film festivals that increasingly run the risk of closing their doors.

According to this LA Weekly article, the studios are helping finance the conversion of multi-screen theater houses but smaller theaters are in danger of not weathering the switch. Yes, improving technology is disruptive and it’s a shame. A ton of video stores didn’t survive the VHS/DVD conversion in the early 90s, like my very own family owned video store, but the smaller film houses can survive by becoming awesome repertory theaters! Cinespia for example makes a killing every summer at Hollywood Forever Cemetery, screening classic film. With the right programming and event planning, small theater houses can give 35mm classics a second life.

Ultimately, digital is a step forward. Sure the pixel capture doesn’t quite emulate film grain texture but this is constantly improving like all software technology does. Companies like Sony and Canon make a fortune off of it getting better every year. Cameron and Lucas touched on that fact in the film, so did Rodney Charters during the Q&A panel. It will all eventually improve as technology always does.


January 24, 2012 § Leave a comment

ron galella

The 2010 documentary titled Smash His Camera is about Ron Galella, a “pioneer paparazzo” who is hated by some and praised by others. His work is debatable: is it art or newsworthy? Is it slanderous uninvited intrusion caught on film? You decide.

Ron Galella got his start in the early 60s as a curious art-driven photographer who then became fascinated with chasing celebrities — screen actors, political figures and musicians. His pursuit of Jackie Kennedy Onassis quickly developed into his life’s mission; in fact his fascination went so far it landed him in several court battles with the recovering widow of JFK.

From the eyes of an outsider looking in, the fascination seems unhealthy. His photographs were used without her permission and on a number of occasions she either told him to stop, or tried to avoid the snap of his lens—most times even running or quickly walking away from him. To Galella’s credit, he did help build Jackie O’s legacy, her pictures were sold to dozens of magazines, keeping her in the spotlight. After all–THAT IS what helps keep publicity alive, the constant mentioning and sharing of (most of the time pirated) images or works of art. Whether it was ultimately a positive or a negative thing for the widow is a mystery; however, this should be weighed in terms of right and wrong. I wouldn’t be happy about being in the spotlight without first giving my consent. She did not give her written consent, so it’s wrong as far as I’m concerned and she wasn’t doing anything newsworthy.

At some point you have to wonder: Is the paparazzi morally right or wrong for chasing screen workers who some say are “celebs by choice and love the cameras” and is it OK that the paps (in Galella’s case) make millions for invading personal space? I still think that there is a time and a place for photo snapping and most importantly, safety. Even those that choose a life in the public eye should at all times have the freedom to choose the images that are broadcast.

I picked an attorney-friend’s brain about it because I was uneasy about the film and the idea as a whole, as many others are. I asked “why can’t celebs sue the paps for profits of their photos?” Seems more than fair right? This would substantially reduce the occurrence of paparazzos chasing down their subjects, right? Why would they if their profits were eliminated as the dangling carrot? His stance was this:

They’re public figures and paps photos are considered newsworthy, same reason why news shows like Catch a Predator don’t need signed release forms.” In this case, I completely understand newsworthiness, exposing predators serves the good of public safety, but what makes a pretty face or a bike ride through a park or city street newsworthy? Who decides what is newsworthy? The people that are paying the big bucks for these images are ultimately magazine editorial teams, but WHY? Sure to each his own, but sometimes I just cannot understand the decision making process that chooses to publish a photo that was taken without the subject’s: 1. participation 2. consent and 3. desire to have the image broadcast to potentially millions of readers.

I question their interest-range and really their judgment of what they think is news worthy. Has this person cured cancer, is a famous person walking down the street really worth sharing and publicizing. Are they thinking: “Is this the kind of image I want to project onto sponge-like minds?” Do they realize they are in fact influencing the thought processes of their readers?

It made me think about what drives people to buy gossip mags. It surely keeps me from throwing any dough their way, but what about you–what are your thoughts? Would you like to see a shift in publishing? Would readers as a whole benefit from more thought-out publishing practices and standards?

Snow White & the Huntsman

October 1, 2011 § Leave a comment

Hey computer animation techs who engineered this movie, I cannot wait to see this total orgasm for the eyes on the silver screen. Just look carefully at the 3D computer graphics used to manipulate the birds to swarm furiously, the soldier to shatter with the strike of a sword and the infamous mirror on the wall that morphs into a draped figure. I’m sure it will make one hell of a big-screen-show.

UPDATE: It did horribly at the box office, and according to one critic, it didn’t live up to its awesome preview.

SF Latino Film Festival: Call for Entries

April 1, 2011 § Leave a comment

The San Francisco Latino Film Festival is now accepting film entries.

Films made by, about or with Latinos from the U.S. and abroad are encouraged to enter.

To qualify films must be made between 2008 and now. Short and feature films are welcome to enter and the deadline to submit is June 3, 2011.

Click here for the PDF entry form. If you have questions, email info@sflatinofilmfestival.com.

Follow SF Latino film happenings on Twitter and like the SF Latino Film Festival on Facebook to join the conversation.

Good luck!


The Storm That Swept Mexico

March 29, 2011 § Leave a comment

Pancho Villa

The Mexican Revolution was the first major revolution to be filmed. The Storm That Swept Mexico incorporates photographs and motion pictures from these earliest days of cinema, many of which have never before been seen outside of Mexico.

Ten years in the making by Bay Area filmmakers Ray Telles and Kenn Rabin, The Storm That Swept Mexico is a powerful exploration of one of the most fascinating eras in modern history.

This exclusive new documentary THE STORM THAT SWEPT MEXICO, which tells the epic story of the Mexican revolution of 1910, the first major political and social revolution of the 20th century, will screen only one night in the Bay Area and will be followed by a conversation with the filmmakers, Ray Telles and Kenn Rabin.

This rare footage will be on the big screen Thursday, March 31, 7:00pM at 1118 Fourth Street, San Rafael. Call 415.454.1222 for more information. This is a California Film Institute screening.

Watch the trailer.

TRAILER – The Storm That Swept Mexico from Paradigm Productions on Vimeo.


Somos Lo Que Hay at San Diego Latino Film Festival

March 11, 2011 § Leave a comment

Somos Lo Que Hay

The 18th annual San Diego Latino Film Festival kicks off tonight with a screening of the highly anticipated thriller Somos Lo Que Hay, a Canana film about cannibals in modern day Mexico City.

I’m excited to see it along with a slew of new Spanish language films this weekend. Tweet me if you’re out there @sflatinofilm.

To get more information about San Diego Latino Film Festival screenings go to sdlatinofilm.com, follow them on Twitter @macsd and follow hashtag #SDLFF.

Here’s a trailer of Somos Lo Que Hay.

Directed by Jorge Michel Grau.


Bay Area Latino Film Begins a New Chapter

March 8, 2011 § Leave a comment

Cine+Mas SF, a new organization producing the San Francisco Latino Film Festival successfully wrapped year two of their September events. A group of ten Bay Area film lovers run this non-profit organization with Fractured Atlas as its fiscal sponsor.

The group pushes messages online, on the streets, via radio and on news stations like CBS5 – all in an effort to keep the Latino film movement thriving in the SF Bay Area. Shows were presented in San Francisco, Marin, Redwood City, the Silicon Valley at The Tech Museum of Innovation and in Berkeley.

The festival showcased 30 films including shorts, documentaries, and features. Eight countries were represented including Mexico, Peru, Argentina, Venezuela, the Dominican Republic, Uruguay, Brazil, and the USA.

Seven filmmakers were in attendance including Florence Jaugey, director of the Oscar nominated film, ‘La Yuma’.

It’s not a festival without parties and there were several including a smash opening night at the new SOM SF in partnership with Latinos a Morir. Other events included Project One closing night at Sub-Mission, and their annual IMAX event at the Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose.

“Our mission is to step forth as a new organization with fresh eyes” says their founder, Lou Ramirez. “We were successful in doing so, showcasing two Oscar nominated films in the foreign film category.”

The website contains constantly updated information. View call for entry details, film trailers along with film notes and links their Facebook page: www.sflatinofilmfestival.com or follow them on http://Twitter.com/sflatinofilm.

Robert Rodriguez in THE BLACK MAMBA

March 6, 2011 § Leave a comment

Filmmaker Robert Rodriguez

For the first time in our film recollection, veteran filmmaker Robert Rodriguez appears in one of his films – his short about Kobe Bryant titled THE BLACK MAMBA.

The short film for Nike also stars Danny Trejo, Kobe Bryant, Kanye West, Bruce Willis and some wicked looking basketball beasts.

Here it is in its entirety. Enjoy!

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