Saturday, January 30, 2010

Women of Horror Film Festival Announced

Received from Mitchell Wells:

We are thrilled to announce another Women of Horror Film Festival in May -- Women of Horror 2.

With each festival we try to bring a new and different theme into the movie theater, and once again it's Lady's Night!

On Saturday, May 1st from 5pm to 2am, Horror Society will feature films directed, produced, or written by women.

Our goal for this festival is to show the female side of the horror genre in a way that most of the horror fans are not familiar with. Many studios and companies need to stay away from this point of view because it does not attract the audience they are looking for. To us that is a shame. There are so many female directors doing indie horror now without the recognition they need and deserve. This is our chance to show those women that are making these types of films.

So with that said, we are looking for films (both feature and short) that go along with this theme. If you are a female director, producer, or writer, here is your chance to get your film screened to an audience that will appreciate it. Submission fees are real cheap at only $20 for a short or a feature length film.

April 17th will be the final day for submissions. Anything postmarked after that date will not be considered.

The theater is located on 4050 N. Milwaukee Ave in Portage Park. It’s a beautiful theater located in a great part of the city with state of the art equipment. We will have the theater from 5pm to 2am with vendors, giveaways, and more.

More information at:

Advertising, Sponsorship, and Vendor Tables are available for companies wanting to promote their horror related products directly to their consumers.

Mitchell Wells (Festival Director)

Horror Society
(773) 706-9836

Israeli Comics Satirize IDF in Haiti

It's interesting to see how differently Israel is portrayed in the U.S. vs. in Israel. In American entertainment, no comedian -- no matter how "dangerous," "daring," or "cutting edge" -- dares to seriously mock Israel. A gentle ribbing, perhaps, but nothing harsh.

Israeli comics, however, mock Israel as harshly as American comics mock America.

Here's a clip from the Israeli TV show, It's a Wonderful Country, a sort of Israeli Saturday Night Live. The point of the joke, apparently, is that Israel sent only a token rescue force to Haiti, and only for P.R. purposes.

Something else you don't see on American TV. The "black actor" in this clip appears to be a white actor in blackface. Note his white arm.

There is a sizable black Ethiopian Jewish population in Israel, but I guess they have yet to make inroads into TV. However, I don't suppose Arab countries are any more enlightened in their attitude toward blacks.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Martin Scorsese Praises Anti-Communist My Son John

This essay is reprinted courtesy S.T. Karnick:

Turner Classic Movies presents a grand total of two Hollywood movies about the dangers of international communism (and Communism) Wednesday night beginning at 8 EST. Will host Robert Osborne be as sympathetic to these films as he has always been toward anti-anticommunist movies? Not bloody likely.

Leo McCarey's My Son John (1952) has been uniformly lambasted by mainstream critics since the day it was released—because the villains are Communists. Yet Martin Scorsese, a smart cineaste and certainly no rabid anti-communist, classed the film among his all-time favorites and wrote very sympathetically and understandingly about it. It's actually a highly interesting film, and well worth watching, very much in the style of McCarey's other non-comedy films of the 1930s and '40s, such as Love Affair and Going My Way.

This clip (although of poor visual quality) gives a good sense of the film's style and quality:

Tune in and decide for yourself. I've seen My Son John, and the critical reception toward it has been absurdly dismissive of this heartfelt and very absorbing film. Had it been pro-Communist, I'm certain the reception would have been the very opposite, given that so many weak and inane films (such as The Front) have been falsely praised as courageous and brilliant.

-- S. T. Karnick

S. T. Karnick edits The American Culture, where this article first appeared.