Since 2007 it has become an annual tradition for me to volunteer as part of the Tribeca Crew at the Tribeca Film Festival. I have to say that every year I grow more and more excited for it’s arrival in the spring, and every year my expectations are exceeded as far as films, events, and celebrity encounters go. This year was probably my most successful and professional year working for the festival, and I also saw the most films this year. I was smart enough to do a nice, long in-depth review of the Film Guide before the festival started so I could make a list of things I wanted to see in advance. While I didn’t get to see all of my picks I did get to see a nice chunk of them, and I’d like to share my thoughts on them with you.
“Sexy Baby” was the first film of the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival I had the pleasure of seeing and I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed it. The documentary follows three main subjects: 12 year old Winifred who is growing up in the Facebook generation with no guidance while her parents are facing a divorce, 22 year old Laura, an elementary school teacher getting labiaplasty due to a comment made to her by a guy about her labia being bigger than a porn stars, and former porn star Nichole who is dealing with finding her self again after being married, retiring from porn, and working on having a baby with her husband. It’s an eye-opening look at three different generations being affected by the over-sexed society we live in and adjusting to it in different ways. I would definitely recommend parents, students, and teachers alike see this film to get an idea of what the generations growing up now and the generations to come will be facing.
Chris Colfer wrote and stars in this indie teen drama centering around a determined high school journalist who uses his peers, a multitude of different personalities ranging from the snobby teenager (Sarah Hyland), to a secretly gay popular male student (Carter Jenkins), to his one and only friend: a loner with a video camera (Rebel Wilson), to create a literary magazine in hopes of improving his chances of getting into Northwestern. In the process he changes their perspective on life as well as his own, especially as he overcomes some personal issues including his bumpy relationships with his divorced parents – a useless alcoholic mom (Allison Janney) and an estranged father (Dermot Mulroney). While the star-studded cast was definitely a draw for me, I have to say the film was good but not great. I will say though that I’m still definitely impressed with Chris Colfer for breaking out of what I thought would be his typecast role on ‘Glee‘.
Newcomer Jess Weixler stars in this coming of age dramedy about a young girl trying to figure out what the hell to do with her life. The film takes place over the course of one terrible day while Jillian (Weixler) gets stuck filling in for her best friend on a shady ice cream truck in the middle of nowhere with a dead cell phone and a raging hangover. The film was OK – but not something I was really thrilled with. I think if it had been stretched out over a longer period of time instead of one day, maybe if it were even one week, that it would have had more of an effect on me. The best part of the film are the small roles Jesse Eisenberg and Jason Ritter have in the film, both of whom are definitely the saving graces.
Rob Lowe stars in this political semi-drama that feels more like a brutally honest documentary than anything else. Paul Turner (Lowe) is every politicians knight in shining armor. There isn’t a single campaign crisis he can’t fix for you, even if it involves risking a complete strangers life. I have to say that I LOVED this film. With another star-studded cast featuring Jamie Chung, Jennifer Morrison, Carrie-Anne Moss, Eric McCormack, and Julie Bowen this was probably my favorite film of the festival. Any movie that can make me both laugh and cry all while sitting on the edge of my seat anticipating the characters next moves is something I will fawn over forever, and “Knife Fight” definitely did all of that and more.
Another documentary covering how society has drastically changed in an age where we are all much more self-aware than our ancestors before us, this one focuses on the men for once. Will Arnett and Jason Bateman take us on a journey through all of the different physical struggles men in today’s society regarding keeping themselves well-groomed and facing identity issues when it comes to “being a man”. The documentary had us all asking, “What defines a man these days?” and taught us that the definition changes from one man to the next, very rarely being the same in each of them. Judd Apatow, Zach Galifianakis, Paul Rudd, and Adam Corolla contribute to this hilarious but honest look inside the man’s brain. An absolute must see for EVERYONE.
The films on my ‘hit list’ that I missed are as follows: “Any Day Now“, “Babygirl“, “Double of Nothing“, “Freaky Deaky“, “Jack and Diane“, “Lola Versus“, “Take This Waltz“, and “Your Sister’s Sister“. Hopefully they all make an appearance in a theater or on Netflix soon so I can check them out!