Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Edinburgh Film Festival Starts Tonight!

This week, summer officially begins.

For me, my memories of summer are just exactly what you might see in a movie about summer days and nights in the South or Midwest: sleeping in, then up to run to the market or to the get the good picks from veggie stand (or the shrimpers when then came in) then off working in the garden, or skivving off to do some swimming in the lake as my brother would always do, leaving me with most of the work, but every now and then I would sneak off to ignore the chores and head out to my favorite spot near the woods where there was this great old oak tree by this creek that had good light and I would read read read. Oh it's completely corney and hokey to think of it but that was my life. I think its now the site of a bunch of condos near a Target or outdoor mall, but isnt that how it always is? Once in a while there were long road trips to the shore, or out west, band camp, summer bible school, weekly barbeques and dances, and always always long muggy nights filled with the sounds of the radio broadcasting baseball games, or the latest jazz/blues concerts, but for me the highlight was going to the drive- in to watch movies.

In those days, out door drive in movies were all the rage and for me, I very firmly identify summer with movies. All sorts of movies. If we were lucky and had a bit of money left over we might get lucky and scoot off to the dollar movie theater where they had air conditioning or fans everywhere, but generally, as money was always tight, it was best spent on going to the drive-in theater (where we regularly took turns sneaking our friends in hidden in the trunk) or scooting over the walls -we found a good low spot in the back left lol I can remember it exactly, and just walked in when we didn't have a car nor gas for the car, and watching the latest movie up on the big screen. There is something quite fun about sitting with a group of friends (or if you were lucky enough to have a date which I never did alas, go off for a bit of snogging as it were)and watch these great stories, comedies, drama, old classics, great adventures about people and places far away from where we were.

Tonight the Edinburgh International Film Festival begins in Scotland. Obviously film festivals in the summer are as strong as they were, and I think no matter where you grew up or live now, you can appreciate the joys of these summer events. You can have those outdoor events like Motovun or the mixture of what Edinburgh is offering. While there isn't a great Sigma film like Hallam Foe lol to kick off the event like last year, Sigma's Alastair Mackenzie is part of the opening film tonight called The Edge of Love. This will generate a lot of press coverage and hoopla (ergo this amusing blog entry here from speculating about Connery parachuting in for the event -ha!) , mostly due to the presence of the stars like Keira Knightley and Sienna Miller and Cillian Murphy and and and -but no word if Alastair will be there (of if they've even kept his part in!) I do hope there will be at least one photo of him there, but you never know.

Other films of note playing during the next few weeks really appeal to me much more, although they have nothing specifically to do with Sigma Films.
(All Media Scotland has this handy dandy article, that lists some Scottish films of interest at the festival, along with screening times and locations) NOTE: Scottish Screen will be there at the Festival with a booth for all to visit, and you can pick up a copy of that awesome (yet huge to download but well worth it) Made in Scotland brochure which you can bet lunatic fans-can't imagine who they might be;)- will be popping by to procure. I'm betting the Boyd and Carlyle and Dougray Scott fans will also make their presence known-just saying ... Bonus:Happy hour drinks! Huzzah~

*FAINTHEART: The Myspace created/backed film, the movie stars among a host of others, the awesome Ewan Bremner (HALLAM FOE, and of course Trainspotting). Good articles to read about this are here via The Times, The Telegraph, and The Scotsman. Its a pretty good bet Ewan will be there when it screens next week *crosses fingers* Ticket info via here.

Side note, Ewan was also recently in the news for his charity work, helping a bunch of students learn about film. This kind of quite yet classy thing-such as what Sigma Films did with their StarFish for Y0ung People program is vital, and another reason why I admire people like Ewan and Gillian and Colin and the people who run the Starfish program (headed by someone named Beth Allen) and companies like Sigma for thinking beyond themselves and giving back and investing in the future in a real and tangible way. More on this later but fighting the good fight is never a bad thing at all.

STONE OF DESTINY: First, Billy Boyd confirmed to attend. Ditto Robert Carlyle. Expect hordes of screaming fans.

This film looks awesome. Postive buzz o plenty. Good article now online via the Daily Record.
The Scottish Government was temporarily brain dead when someone thought it would be ok for Alex Salmond to release comments saying that he feels the current stone is fake. Way to shoot oneself in the ass. Sorry, but good grief! Just when the entire eyes of the world are on Scotland and you have a load of free press and publicity and you are trying to recruit TOURISM=BIG MONEY you do NOT , repeat NOT go say hey its fake, fools- why the f would people want to come see this, see this film-oy! As a person who does Archaeology as a serious hobby, sure there are boatloads of fake artifacts everywhere nothing new at all, but his comments struck me as so counterproductive to his own ongoing concurrent efforts (ie the Homecoming 2009 to Scotland thing which will get its own entry here soon) that I was incredulous. really. Anyway I want to see the Stone of Destiny film, moron comments notwithstanding, I think and hope a lot of others will too.

SOMERS TOWN. This had not been on my list but it is directed by Shane Meadowns, and it turns out it features RED ROAD'S KATIE DICKIE. Yes! While I can't find a trailer for either Stone of Destiny, nor this film, I did spot this lovely montage on Youtube that rather sums up this film.

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