Tuesday at Newport Beach Film Festival

nbff marquee

It was a dark and moody day at the festival.


The day opened with Call of the Void a noirish tale of love and madness. Steve is determined to win back the love of his life Veronica yet it seems clear she wants nothing to do with him. In fact, even his therapist tells him he needs to move on with his life. But really this is not so much about the story as it is about the mood. Set in the 1940s with black and white cinematography that emphasizes light and shadows, this creates an eerie environment that sets up the final twist.


Demimonde is the story of three women?a well-known prostitute who has found a rich patron, her housekeeper, and a new maid?in Budapest in the early 20th Century. The new maid is entranced by the worldliness she encounters. The housekeeper tries to protect the new girl from corruption. The lady of the house seems to see some special promise in the girl. The dynamics of jealousy, virtue, desire, and control all intertwine as the story evolves.


Fare takes place almost entirely inside a car. Eric drives for a ride-sharing service. We see a few of his fares, and then he gets called to one he can?t believe he?ll be driving?the man with whom his wife is having an affair. As they drive around and he reveals who he is, there is a great deal of animosity exchanged, threats made, and discussion of relationship and marriage. And then his wife gets in the car as well. I really like the discussion and shifting perspectives as they drove around. It kind of fell apart in the final act, however.

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