Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The 2nd Annual Milwaukee Film Festival Day 2

Holy buckets, day 2 started out at a frantic pace and I almost didn't make it into my first movie. Note to self- everyone on the planet goes to the North Shore Theater for 5pm matinees on Fridays. Granted, I only gave myself about 30 minutes at the theater before the first show, but I couldn't find any parking that didn't involve me practically parking in the town of Glendale (about 10 minutes South of the theater, for anyone reading this unfamiliar with the geography of the theater). When I finally did, I had about 5 minutes to get from my car-to the theater-to my seat. Yikes. But here I sit, puffing away from the effort with about a minute to spare. At least I will get to see a good movie (I hope) that looks interesting. Apparently I wasn't the only one who thought so, because there are a good 250 people here for a 5:45 show. When I came in I slunk into one of the lower section side seats to create the least amount of disruption, and was grateful for that seat, even. Turns out, it's my new favorite spot in this particular auditorium.

Poor Managing Director Kyle Heller. He's introducing the film and having to contend with this really hilarious uptempo Spanish music playing in the auditorium, which he found really distracting, but was pretty hilarious to the audience, well, me at least. He was actually getting pretty annoyed and kept dropping hints into the microphone that went unheard. Can't blame the guy. Catchy music though.

The racing around continues, because my next film begins 15 minutes after the first one ends, (and it's starting a few minutes late) so I make sure that I jump up the second it ends and book next door. I made it with a couple of minutes to spare, but I've quickly discovered the differences between the two main auditoriums they show the films in - Theater 1 is bigger and it rocks because there are a lot of great vantage points to sit from, and since everyone gravitates to the stadium seating anyway, I get perfectly good seats on the ground floor that give me space to work in and a quick exit strategy when the film ends. (Unlike when I see movies any other time, at the MFF, I jump up the second the film ends so I can get to the bathroom and get situated at my next venue.) Theater 2, which is the one closer to the lobby, is smaller and doesn't have the same good vantage points on the ground level, so I either have to do stadium seating or try to get one of the two back rows of the floor level. Plus the seats are really squishy so if you apply any kind of pressure to the back of the seat you're practically in a La-Z-Boy, which is comfy, yes, but when you've been sitting in theaters for 7 hours, sleep aids are not welcome and especially when there's no one in front of you? It's really easy to lean back and put your feet up on the seats in front of you. By the 9 or 10pm movie I'm usually ready to sit in an rigid-Amish made chair despite the protestations from my ass. It may seem like I've over-analyzed these theaters, but let's see what your mind turns to after spending half your waking hours in the same two places?

Anyway, my second movie was in Theater 2 so despite the fact I got there minutes before the show start, I still got a back row ground seat and there were about 200 people behind and above me, so everything was okay. UWM Peck School of the Arts Dean Wade Hobgood introduced the film and mentioned (not sure why, maybe because of it's association with UWM?) that the LGBT film festival is going to be at the Oriental Theater this year. I'm either way out of the loop and it's been there before, or that's new, but either way, it's cool and I'll probably try to check it out.

VENGEANCE. It's a great word and pretty much the only way I can keep going tonight. VENGEANCE. It's just before 10:15 and the final movie tonight is, yes, Vengeance. (I wasn't just repeating the word psychotically or anything...right.) Now, I'll admit it. I'm an old lady. Maybe not in earth years, but hey, I work at 8am normally and so my bed time is somewhere around 10:30 - 11:00 if I'm feeling saucy. Plus my eyes get super tired faster now (boy, I'm really going to be primed to be one of those complaining old people when I go to the home) so it actually is a physically improbability that I'm still at it tonight. But VENGEANCE! It looks like a good movie, so here I am with...20 people. WTF?! That's pretty surprising considering the late start shouldn't be much of a deterrent on a Friday night. Wusses. Or maybe the general public knows better. I shall soon see, I suppose.

A note to whoever is running the show - at this point I've seen 4 films, which means that I've seen the sponsor trailer 4 times. Only once (at opening night) did the trailer start playing without a hitch; every other time so far, either the screen was too blurry to see anything for the first 10-20 seconds, or there was no sound... my "real job" is in Marketing and lemme tell you - the more than 90 sponsors would be pretty pissed to see that, especially since the problem is always in the beginning when they're showing the big guns.

Walking out to my car after the movie ended was pretty funny though; there were about 10 cars in the entire lot so obviously we were the last ones standing at the theater and there was probably a really annoyed teenager waiting for us to get the hell out of there.

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