|Blackwater Railroad Company|
I'd note that another Alaskan - Portugal the Man - came up on one of the characters iPod in the movie as well.
Shot in and around Seward, Sugar Mountain was a respectable and interesting film, with very recognizable scenery for most of the audience. I was impressed that it was made, in part, when there was snow and ice on the ground. The main characters, facing debt and the loss of their boat, concoct a plot to have one of them get lost in the mountains and then sell their story to the media when he's found. Things don't go quite as planned but the dig at the media's willingness to pay for such stories is clear. The acting was good, the story had twists and turns and surprises. The scenery was spectacular, but the grittiness of Alaska winter also comes through.
Two of the actors - Drew Roy and Haley Webb - were there to answer questions after the movie. They talked about coming to Alaska (which they loved) to meet co-stars they didn't know, and their relief to find each other to be serious and talented actors. Haley agreed with a questioner that her character was the antagonist - like a submarine, below the surface, but powerful in directing things.
The film opens in theaters next week, Dec. 9.
After the Q&A, there was champagne and dessert and a time to meet and talk with folks. I got to talk to some of the programmers for features, documentaries, and shorts. I asked the features guys for tips on movies that didn't get into competition, but were must sees. Some suggestions: Money, The 6th Friend, The Holly Kane Experiment, and Hunky Dory. I also was assured the film I've been excited about from the descriptions I found on line - Planet Ottakring (Saturday at 3:15) - is a good one. And, my assumption that Demimonde, the film by Atilla Szász who directed the festival's 2014 Best Feature, The Ambassador To Bern, is spectacular was confirmed. It plays Saturday at 8pm at the Bear Tooth.
Among the people I got to talk to was Alex Myung, whose animated film Arrival plays Tuesday night along with the feature Gayla film Real Boy.
|Shot from Alex Myung's Arrival|