Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Spring film fest to celebrate independent film

Magic Lantern Cinemas will screen film through May

Express Staff Writer

Mia Wasikowska stars in the film “Jane Eyre,” a Focus Features release directed by Cary Fukunaga. Photo by Laurie Sparham

The Magic Lantern Cinemas in Ketchum will hold its annual Spring Film Festival featuring six independent films. The festival will run from Friday, April 29, through Friday, May 20.

"In the past the festival had an overloaded schedule," said Magic Lantern Cinemas owner Rick Kessler. "It was hard for people to see everything."

Kessler said the film festival is an opportunity for the movie-going public to see quality films made independently.

"The films were independently financed," he said. "They don't have car chases, they're not comic books and not high-concept. These movies are about something."

Kessler said there's nothing wrong with entertainment but these films get lost in the ether. "These films are about something and about people," he said.

Kessler said Netflix and home video are great to see favorite films over and over, but attending a movie is a social experience. He said there's a difference between movie going and movie watching.

< "We are fortunate to have such a sophisticated market of really smart moviegoers," he said. "It's a delight for me to play these movies. Nothing gives me greater pleasure."

For the festival, he chose "Jane Eyre," "Nowhere Boy," "Of Gods and Men," "Win Win," "The Concert" and "The Conspirator."

The first week of the festival will include "Jane Eyre," "Nowhere Boy" and "Of Gods and Men."

A new "Jane Eyre" remake by Cary Fukunaga features Mia Wasikowska, Michael Fassbender, Jamie Bell, Sally Hawkins and Dame Judi Dench.

The New Orleans Times Picayune said about "Jane Eyre" that "with strong performances and striking, well-conceived visuals, in Fukunaga's hands Bronte's tale of love and woe becomes one well worth repeating."

Featuring Aaron Johnson, Anne-Marie Duff and Kristin Scott Thomas, "Nowhere Boy" is a film about John Lennon growing up in Liverpool, England, in 1955. At 15, Lennon yearns to experience life and be part of a normal family. He ends up in the world of rock 'n' roll teenager Paul McCartney.

"Of Gods and Men" is a film that Wood River Valley residents will appreciate. It is the story about eight French Christian monks who live in harmony with their Muslim brothers in a monastery perched in the mountains of North Africa in the 1990s. A massacre by an Islamic fundamentalist group causes fear to sweep though the region. The monks need to make a decision about staying. The film is loosely based on the life of the Cistercian monks of Tibhirine in Algeria, from 1993 until their kidnapping in 1996. The New York Times called "Of Gods and Men" "a thrilling adventure of the spirit."

For a complete schedule of films and times, visit

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