Stream these award-winning movies at the virtual Breck Film Festival
The Geiger Counter’s weekend picks
Don’t know what to do this weekend? Well, you’ve come to the right place. Pull up a seat to the counter, and I’ll tell you about everything that’s hot and happening.
The annual Breck Film Fest may have wrapped its physical festivities this past weekend, but the virtual component is still going on through Sunday, Sept. 25. It’s a great way to watch the films if you missed the event because of a prior commitment, if you’re a former resident wanting to reconnect to Summit County or if you simply can’t get enough of the films.
There are numerous options to chose from, but one way to help narrow it down is by watching the films that won awards at the festival, almost all of which are available online. The winners and their descriptions are as follows:
Best Short Drama — “All That Glitters”: This 24-minute short is featured in a curated block of thrillers. It is about a desperate teenager stealing a purse who then discovers the two have more in common.
Best Adventure — “Exposure”: Directed by Holly Morris, this documentary tells the story of a Muslim chaplain, a French biologist, a Qatari princess and eight other women attempting to ski to the North Pole.
Best Documentary — “Doc vs. Parkinson’s”: Like the name implies, Brent Deal’s documentary highlights how Dr. George Lopez has dealt with Parkinson’s Disease for 13 long years.
Best Human Spirit — “Refuge” and Best Editing — “Stranger at the Gate”: These two documentaries are in the same “Living Bridges” film block. “Refuge” deals with a leader in a white nationalist hate group finding healing from a Muslim heart doctor, while The New Yorker’s “Stranger at the Gate” is about U.S. Marine Mac McKinney coming face to face with the Afghan community while planning to bomb a local mosque.
Best Drama — “Signs of Love”: Set in the Port Richmond section of Philadelphia, this Clarence Fuller film features Hopper Jack Penn starring as Frankie, a young man from north Philadelphia who struggles to provide for his teen nephew and dreams of a better life away from petty crime and substance abuse.
Best Comedy — “Drink Water”: The opening night film of the festival can still give out laughs for anyone who missed it. This Canadian comedy has teen Mike Drinkwater dealing with the school jock, while Mike’s dad has his own issues with the bully’s father.
Best Student — “The Pomegranate Tree” and Best Foreign Film — “Murder Tongue”: Both found in the “Forms of Prejudice” film block, these titles take place in India and Pakistan. “The Pomegranate Tree” is about a 16-year-old Muslim girl during the partition of India in 1947, while “Murder Tongue” is set in Karachi in 1992 as a brutal chapter of unrest plays out in the city.
Best Short Comedy — “Ms. Rossi Takes The Cake”: This Italian comedy sequel continues the story of Ms. Rossi as she encounters obstacles while working as a loan officer.
Best Director — Arcadi Parlerm-Artis, “Oliver & The Pool”: A 13-year-old boy sits in a lounge chair by a pool with his father’s ashes, not wanting to leave.
Also available digitally are collections of high school films and music videos. “OK, goodbye” won in the high school category, and “Omen” was crowed best music video.
I wasn’t able to attend the screenings, so come join me as we discover new favorites together. Virtual passes are $80, and each film costs $12 to stream individually. Visit BreckFilm.org for more information.
‘Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls’
I’m not the biggest fan of pop music, but I can’t get Lizzo’s “Good As Hell” out of my head, mainly because I binged all of “Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls” this week. The show focuses on 13 women competing for spots to dance with Lizzo at Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival as well as her tour.
My interest was piqued when it won an Emmy in the competition category, taking the award away from consistent winners like “The Amazing Race,” “The Voice” and “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” Though technically a competition, the show is more like a documentary. It reminded me of “20 Feet from Stardom” with its inside look on the world of back-up dancers.
It also doesn’t follow any particular format like a game show, and there isn’t much in the way of cutthroat tactics or drama. Instead, it focuses on body positivity, empathy and joy for an uplifting break from reality.
Jefferson Geiger is the arts and entertainment editor for the Summit Daily News and managing editor for Explore Summit. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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