Sometimes we look through the overlooked movies and find hidden gems, but Will Bigham’s debut, The A-List, isn’t one of those. As a comedy about the downside to popularity in high-school, it is too predictable with too few memorable moments to recommend to any but the most die-hard fans of teen movies.
Marçal Forés’s high school drama about a young man discovering his sexuality caught between surreal childhood fantasy and Romantic adolescent angst falls short of leaving an emotional impression. You’ll remember it as the sad movie about the boy with the yellow bear, but it’s too fixated on teen-aged death fantasy to feel genuine.
The New York Asian Film Festival runs from June 27 – July 15 this year. I usually try to go to a few of the offerings. I generally like their program as it focuses more on popular films coming out of Asia and doesn’t limit itself to whatever broad critical acclaim brings us film festival tedium. The Asian films that European critics Love are seldom the ones that keep me engaged. One criticism I have of the festival is that “Asia” is narrowly defined as Japan, Korea and the China zone. Sure that covers 1.5 billion people, but there are other countries with robust film industries that are worth a peek. But for what it does, it usually has a line up of films that are worth seeking out.