April Is Film Fest Month
It's easy to forget now that the just-finished Dallas International Film Festival has become the big man in town, but the USA Film Festival has been providing Dallas with new and interesting films for a long time. And with its just-announced schedule, the 43-year-old festival, taking place April 24-28, proves that you can never have too many good options when it comes to movies.
Although the USA Film Festival is smaller in scale than DIFF, they've managed to pack quite a few meaty offerings into this year's slate:
- Prince Avalanche, a new dramedy starring Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch about two men painting traffic lines on a highway in an area that's recently suffered through wildfires. The film is written and directed by David Gordon Green, who will be honored by the festival and will be in attendance.
- Manhunt, an HBO documentary about the 20-year hunt for Osama bin Laden. Director Greg Barker will be in attendance.
- The Way, Way Back, a buzzy film starring Steve Carell, Toni Collette and Sam Rockwell and written and directed by Jim Rash and Nat Faxon, who won an Oscar for writing The Descendants. Rash and Faxon will be in attendance.
- Much Ado About Nothing, the ultra-indie Shakespeare adaptation that also happens to be writer/director Joss Whedon's follow-up to a little movie called The Avengers. Longtime fans of Whedon's TV work will appreciate the presence of many of his previous actors, including Nathan Fillion, Alexis Denisof and Dallas native Amy Acker. Acker will be in attendance.
- Touchy Feely, the latest from writer/director Lynn Shelton, who previously helmed the acclaimed My Sister's Sister. That film starred Rosemarie DeWitt, who also stars here.
The festival will feature 24 feature films and 13 short films in all. It will also pay tribute to independent filmmaker Jeff Lipsky, whose credited filmography is relatively brief but whose influence on the film world goes back decades. They'll screen his latest film, Molly's Theory of Relativity.
Other notable offerings include a 25th anniversary screening of They Live; Bridegroom, a documentary that looks at the same-sex marriage debate through one couple's eyes; a free screening of the classic Harold Lloyd silent film Safety Last!; a short film compilation hosted by Dallas native Stephen Tobolowsky; and Bottled Up, a documentary about the fight over Dublin Dr Pepper.
Make sure you plan your schedule wisely, though; the festival overlaps many of their films, so if you have ones that are playing at the same time or back-to-back, you may have to make some hard choices.