Friday, February 25, 2011

FEARLESS OR CLUELESS?


Speaking of the Oscars, if you have any serious money riding on the outcome, check out my fearless predictions in this week's Good Times. In the meantime, here's the no-frills version:


BEST PICTURE: The King's Speech. This is fine with me, impeccable as it is in every way, although I'd love to see Toy Story 3 win.


BEST DIRECTOR: Tom Hooper, The King's Speech.


BEST ACTOR: Colin Firth, The King's Speech. And good for him; he's always great. My favorite? Javier Bardem, Biutiful.


BEST ACTRESS: Natalie Portman, Black Swan. No power of earth can stop her in this category, but damn if I can figure out why. My favorite? Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right.


BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: Christian Bale, The Fighter, well-deserved in a very strong field.


BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Melissa Leo, The Fighter. Oscar loves a lady who transforms into a tramp. My favorite? Helena Bonham Carter, The King's Speech.


Fearless or clueless? Find out Sunday night. As usual, should these prognostications fail to pan out, I'll be here next week to deny I ever made them.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

IN STITCHES


In Oscar season, it's all about the clothes


Look at this cool website I just discovered! For the last 17 years, the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles has hosted an annual exhibit of the year's best movie costumes during Oscar season (February-April). The exhibit is not limited to the year's Best Costume nominees (although they are included), but covers films of all genres and budgets for an annual look at the most interesting onscreen clothes. (That's Arwen's coronation gown, designed by Oscar winner Ngila Dickson, and worn by Liv Tyler in The Lord of the Ring: The Return of the King, in situ at the FIDM exhibit from 2004.)


This years exhibit (costumes from 20+ movies from 2010, including all five Oscar nominees, up close and personal) runs through April 30. But for those of us not heading south anytime soon, the FIDM website provides a virtual online archive of its movie costume exhibitions. Not all of them; this year's and last year's exhibits are not yet online. Exhibits from 1997 and 1998 are represented only by a few fuzzy still photos. But from 1999 through 2009, the online collections expand to numerous photos images (many in drool-worthy detail) of an astonishing variety of films—the Elizabeth movies; the Lord of the Rings and Pirates of the Caribbean trilogies; Julie Taymor movies (Titus and Frida); Tim Burton movies; Austin Powers movies; Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; Moulin Rouge; The Girl With the Pearl Earring; Chicago; Shakespeare In Love, and, well, the list goes on and on.


My only complaint is the lack of consistency on the site. In some featured years, only costumes from the five nominated films are online, while another year might feature costumes from 20 films or more. And no two of these online exhibits are organized exactly the same way; you have to do a lot of scrolling around and searching for appropriate buttons to access all the displays. Some have drop-down menus, others pop-up windows (the 2008 exhibit is only represented by a video featurette, where you can hardly see the clothes at all), but in most cases, if you can find and follow the prompt arrows, or the words "Enter" or "View," you'll probably see it all eventually. And it's worth seeing, especially the 2000 gallery, which features a side exhibit of costumes and accessories from the previous 100 years of film, from Fred Astaire's elegant dancing shoes to Sharon Stone's rude little white dress from Basic Instinct.


And let's face it, at Oscar time, it's all about the clothes. Me, I'm as much a sucker for the clothes worn to the ceremony as the clothes worn onscreen, so at this Sunday's Oscarcast (ABC, 5 p.m.), I'll brave the inevitable blithering of the TV interviewers to catch the red carpet fashion parade during the pre-game show. After all, by the time the actual ceremony rolls around, there aren't going to be that many surprises onstage, so we depend on the red carpet to deliver the drama.


My all-time favorite Oscar dress? Probably that luscious, faux-Edwardian teal green number that Kate Winslet wore the year she didn't win the Oscar for Titanic. To my amazement, this dress churned up a lot of controversy; self-appointed fashion Nazis lambasted it as too weird or matronly or something (this no doubt from the same pundits who used to complain that Kate Winslet—Kate Winslet, fer crying out loud!— was fat). But I just thought it was stunning, in a funky-chic retro way. After all, it's not like she showed up with a dead swan draped around her neck. (Which reminds me: I wonder what Natalie Portman will wear this year?)


You want to know how demented I am about the Oscars? For years, I've paid my own homage to the art of movie costuming by dressing up my vintage Barbie dolls as the Best Actress nominees. It began as something I did as a lark to spruce up the place back when Art Boy and I used to throw lavish Oscar Night parties, but then I started getting into the challenge of the thing. (You try transforming a Barbie doll into Kathy Bates in Misery. I dare you!) We don't throw those big parties any more, but I still find it therapeutic now and then, in a non-verbal, Zen sort of way, to costume the occasional doll.


Nominees in big, juicy, historical epics are the most fun to dress, of course; I was delirious the year both Gwyneth Paltrow in Shakespeare In Love, and Cate Blanchett in Elizabeth were in the running.



Not that the 20th Century can't be interesting too. This was my tribute to the nominees from the lurid '50s melodrama of Far From Heaven, the sassy, Depression-era '30s of Chicago, and the bohemian '20s and '30s of Frida.



And sometimes, it's all about the props, like the year Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis were both nominated for Thelma and Louise.



The Best Actor costumes are rarely as much fun, but I made an exception for Captain Jack Sparrow. I had to go to Goodwill and pop two bucks for a recycled Ken doll, but seriously, Ken never looked better.



So kids, in the spirit of this year's Best Picture nominee, Toy Story 3, the moral is, never throw your toys away. Recycle them to the Goodwill instead. You never know what sort of swashbuckling afterlife is waiting for them there!

Friday, February 18, 2011

CAT TALES


This just in from Julian Soler at the Santa Cruz Film Festival. A new film sure to be dear to the hearts of anyone who's lived in Santa Cruz for longer than about four minutes will have its World Premiere at this year's fest (May 5 to 14). The Catalyst is a feature-length documentary devoted to the life and times—and, of course, the music—of that most venerated and enduring local nightclub, put together by two local folks who probably know the subject better than anyone. Producer Dean Newbury was the Catalyst booking agent for years, during the proprietorship of the late Randall Kane (whom Newbury refers to as his "father figure"). Director Michèle Benson is herself something of a Santa Cruz institution as longtime court photographer/historian/archivist at the Cat, as well as my colleague at Good Times for many years.


Ten years in the making, the film is dedicated to preserving the funky/hip spirit of the Cat, as envisioned by Kane, who shepherded the place from bohemian '60s coffeehouse/hangout to A-list music venue. Interviews with the always-quotable Kane and various staff alumnae will be combined with rare, painstakingly-unearthed concert footage of such Catalyst headliners as Neil Young, Patti Smith, Nirvana, The Doobie Brothers, Greg Kihn, Tina Turner, The Tubes—well, the list goes on and on. Since basically everybody has played the Cat, from Alanis Morissette to The Zutons, my mind is literally boggling as we speak just imagining what sort of musical treasures Benson and Newbury might have turned up. Check out the film's tasty trailer and get the vibe.



According to my friend Mary Offermann, you know you're a real Santa Cruz old-timer when you can remember all the previous businesses that used to be in this or that downtown retail space. (Remember when Kianti's was the original Pretty Mama's? Remember when the Walnut Avenue Cafe was The Old Theatre Cafe? Remember when the Gap building housed Woolworth's?) Those of us who have been here forever still think of the club's current Pacific Avenue location as "the new Catalyst." When I first arrived as a dewy coed in the early '70s, we used to hang out at the "old" Catalyst under the St.George Hotel. The main entrance was on Front Street, or you could take the scenic route, a surreal stroll from Pacific Avenue through the St. George lobby and into the atrium, with its skylights and burbling fountain (pictured above). The bar was sandwiched in there somewhere, en route to the erm, intimate stage and dance floor over on the Front Street side of the floor plan. There, my best friend, Jan, and I frittered away many happy hours. Among my most cherished Cat memories? Dancing the night away to Oganookie, Annie Steinhart on fiddle, gearing up for the last raucous crescendo of "The Orange Blossom Special." Go visit The Catalyst movie website and jump-start your own!


(All images © 2010 All Access Productions, LLC.)


And btw, speaking of SCFF, they will still be accepting film submissions for this year's fest through next Friday, February 25. Click here to read all the details, or find out about Festival Passes.


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

SPELLBOUND



Good news for fans of the esoteric: one of my all-time favorite movies is coming this weekend to the Aptos Weekend Matinee Classics series!


Maybe you had to be an impressionable teenager, like I was, when the movie Black Orpheus (Orfeu Negro) first cast its simmering spell over me. I seem to remember watching it in a classroom, probably in 16mm, on one of those rickety, square pop-up screens, so it was probably with the after-hours movie club I joined in high school. But I've never forgotten the impact of this moody, romantic 1959 update of the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice with the pulsing samba beat.


Set in vibrant Rio de Janeiro during Carnaval, it's about a guitar-strumming young bus conductor, Orfeu (Breno Mello) who falls in love with Eurydice (the beauteous Marpessa Dawn), newly arrived in Rio. But her past catches up to her in the lurid figure of Death during the riotous Carnaval parade, and Orfeu must literally descend into a kind of hellish underworld to reclaim the woman he loves.



Shot in Portuguese by French filmmaker Marcel Camus, the story is set to a propulsive score by Luis Bonfa and Antonio Carlos Jobim, introducing their hip samba fusion music to the world. The haunting "Manha de Carnaval," soon to spark the entire bossa nova craze of the early '60s, was the theme song from Black Orpheus. An international hit, it won the Palme d'Or at Cannes, and both an Oscar and a Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Picture. None of which made any difference to me; all I knew was I absolutely loved this movie to pieces when I saw it back in my misspent youth. Will it hold up after all these years? Let's find out this weekend, Saturday and Sunday, 10:45 a.m. at Aptos. Prepare to be swept away!


(Breno Mello and Marpessa Dawn in Black Orpheus, and, yes, the movie is in color.)



CRITICAL MASS


Just remember, if you go see Black Orpheus on Saturday, you can also come see Bruce Bratton, Wallace Baine and moi at the Nickelodeon on Sunday for our annual slugfest, oops, I mean discussion of the movies of 2010. Back in the day, when Morton Marcus was leading his bi-monthly film discussion group at the Nick, we all used to convene for a year-end wrap-up of our favorite (and otherwise) films of the year in January, followed by a pre-Oscars discussion the week, before the Academy Awards.


Nowadays, we streamline the event into a single, annual mash-up of opinions. Yes, we'll cover what the three of us predict will win the Oscars (along with what SHOULD win, often two entirely different things) when the Academy Awards are handed out next Sunday, February 27. But Wallace, Bruce, and I also reveal what our personal favorite films of the year were and tell you why we liked them. (Handouts of our respective Top Ten titles will be provided, in case you want to rush home and enter them in your queue.) But it's not all about us; we also want to hear about the films you liked (or not) this year. Here's your chance to tell the critics what YOU think! So hie thee down to the Nick, this Sunday (Feb 20), 11 a.m. Turn off your cell phone and join the conversation!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

WHAT'S THE STORY?


Okay, it took us a couple of months to catch up with the clay and glass show at the MAH, but, boy, is it worth seeing. Presented upstairs in the Solari Gallery, this selection of work from members of the Association of Clay and Glass Artists of California (ACGA) offers a compelling and inspirational assortment of pieces from both statewide and local artists. Work on view ranges from vessels and vases to totems and installations, with every conceivable kind of abstract, figurative, functional, and sculptural artwork in between.


Me, I'm drawn to the figurative, as you probably know by now if you read my posts on Zimbabwe sculpture and other recent art shows. Maybe it's the storyteller in me, but in 3D art as well as painting, I like threading my way through the implied narrative when figures take center stage. So pardon my bias, but the most exciting discovery for me at the ACGA show is Bay Area ceramicist Fred Yokel. His sly, whimsical sculptural vignette, "The Build," is the highlight of the show for both Art Boy and me. It was love at first sight; one look, and our eyes were bugging out of our heads like a Tex Avery cartoon.


In this piece, a monumental human form is being constructed out of stone blocks by four or five small worker drones; they're still bustling about the litter of blocks at its feet, trying to fill in the last couple of open spaces in the form. Are they constructing a man-shaped temple to their god? A ceremonial effigy? A Trojan Man? It's all in the perspective. I like to think of these little guys as a person's various inner selves, caught in the act of assembling the complete individual, the sum of all their parts. Or not. That's the cool thing about art, it's open to endless interpretations. Feel free to make up your own.



Evidently, Yokel is well known for a series he calls "Jestures," playful figures of monumental-seeming proportions, yet small format (the central character in "The Build" is only about two feet tall) in expressive poses. Yokel's other piece in the MAH show, the delightful "Woody: Ancient Artifact," captures this spirit, a breezy little character brilliantly textured and painted to resemble carved wood.


I've rhapsodized about local clay artists Coeleen Kiebert and Peggy Snider before; both of them have dynamic pieces in the show. So does Tom Wolver, whose "Contemplation" features a brooding "Thinker"-like character with a typically Wolverian, jackal-headed demon laughing over his shoulder.



Among other intriguing out-of-town artists I "discovered" at this show is Natasha Dikareva. I love her "Shell Dweller" (above) with its poignant little human face emerging from the organic cocoon of the shell. I was also drawn to Vicki Gunter's "The Reading Chair," an evocative ceramic representation of a stuffed, saggy old armchair covered in flowered chintz. The object itself is one thing, but the story that goes with it (written out in the artist's attached note), about memories of the old family chair she crawled into as a child to hear stories, completes the narrative in the most fitting way—with the written word. Another piece I found weirdly haunting was "Legerdemain," by Charlene Doiron Reinhart, which celebrates the idea of sleight-of-hand with four tiers of digits unfolding from each other like the petals of a rose. (Don't forget to peek around at the back of this piece for the punch line.)



This is just a teeny, tiny sampling of the work on view at the MAH show. (And by the way, I think it's great that the MAH now regularly features local artists in its exhibits, after so many years as mainly a venue for traveling art shows from elsewhere. Big kudos to Susan Hillhouse and her staff for finding ways to bring both local artwork and traveling shows to the party.) No matter what your personal bias, there's much to inspire you here. The ACGA show runs through March 13, so there's still plenty of time to go get the story.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

TIME'S WINGÉD CHARIOT


Heads up, kids! Here come two great movies you need to go see right away. As usual, some of the best films of the old year are just now trickling down onto local screens, and opening tomorrow are two of the best of 2010, either one (or both) of which I might have put on my personal Top Ten if only I'd seen them in time. Very different kinds of films, each deals with the passage of time with compassion and urgency.


How long is long enough to save the world? Even the miniscule portion of your immediate world where you might actually be able to make an impact? This is the dilemma faced by the hard-luck protagonist played with furious grace by the great Javier Bardem in Biutiful, a man clawing a living out of the urban underbelly of Barcelona who discovers he has only a short time left to straighten out his messy life for the sake of his beloved children. Brooding and heartfelt, it's a dark, yet tender vision of life on the fringe from the always provocative Alejandro González Iñárritu. (Read more.)


(High Hopes)


Here's the thing about Mike Leigh. From the very first of his films that I saw, the irrepressible High Hopes, in 1988, I knew that he and I were on the same wavelength. This most passionate bard of Britain's working class has always been a champion of the disenfranchised, with a dry, often scathing wit coupled with a huge heart for the human condition.


High Hopes is a blisteringly funny look at class warfare and family ties in Margaret Thatcher's England. At its heart is a scruffy young, leftist couple in the Kings Cross district of London; she's a nurturing earth-mother, he's a disappointed Marxist always railing scornfully (in unprintable but hilarious terms) about the evils of government by the corporate rich. Sadly, not much has changed in the world since then, except that the corporate stranglehold is even more severe and the plight of the lower classes even more desperate.



Leigh's absolutely wonderful new film, Another Year, could be about the same couple, 25 years later. Indeed, the same marvelous actress, Ruth Sheen, plays the wife in both films, and in both cases, she is the wry, good-humored, compassionate soul of the story. This time out, she's paired with the great Jim Broadbent; he's Tom, a geologist bursting with sly wit and bonhomie who does not suffer fools gladly, but most of the time just manages to keep a lid on his snarky opinions. Sheen plays his wife, Gerri, a caring mental health counselor at the local hospital. They live in a comfy brick flat north of London, but spend most of their free time at the neighborhood "allotment," an open plot of land where they tend their garden of vegetables and herbs. Their marriage has been long and happy, produced one droll and loving son (Oliver Maltman), and they still spend all their free time together, cooking, gardening, laughing, and hanging out.


Things have not worked out so well for their friends, most of them alone or unhappily wed, miserable in their jobs, dissatisfied with themselves, and no longer able to ignore the grim fact that life is passing them by. Time, not politics, is the enemy this time around, and the film takes place over the seasonal cycles of one year, from spring through winter, as time's wingéd chariot inevitably whooshes onward. (When Gerri comments on the book he's reading in bed, Tom dryly observes, "I never liked history in school, but the older I get, the more relevant it seems.")


But Tom and Gerri have faced life's challenges and made something of their lives together. The delicate tension wrought by Leigh in the film comes from the desperation with which their misfortunate friends are lured to the nurturing flame of their happiness and stability. Chief among these is Lesley Manville in a fearless and devastating performance as Mary, a lonely, long-divorced secretary at Gerri's hospital clinging to the memory of youth with her too-revealing clothes and too-brittle perkiness, who keeps pushing the boundaries, desperately trying to upgrade from work mate to surrogate family status. Peter Wight plays Tom's old school chum, also divorced, compulsively gorging himself on food, drink, and cigarettes to fill up the emptiness inside. (His neighborhood pubs are now "full of young people, talking about nothing!" he complains.) Tom's elderly old codger of a brother, Ronnie (David Bradley, best known as sinister Hogwarts groundskeeper Filch in the Harry Potter movies), is a new widower reduced to near catatonia, with an explosively angry son.


(David Bradley and Lesley Manville)


Leigh famously workshops his story ideas with his cast to arrive at a script, and there's not a false syllable in the entire movie. Every conversation, however fragmented, has the ache and vitality of real life, as well as every potent glance, and all the things that remain unspoken as these characters face up to life's disappointments. And the movie teems with sudden, breathtaking insights; when Mary talks to Ronnie about the music they loved as kids—The Beatles and Elvis—we realize this is what's become of the generation that was going to change the world back in 1968.


Working with his longtime cinematographer Dick Pope to replicate the changing seasons within a rigorous eight-week shooting schedule, Leigh also masters the look of the film as the year and his dramatic themes evolve. As vibrant as their kitchen is, with its warm, curry-colored walls and vivid tiles, the same interior looks washed out and cold in a later, winter scene when Tom and Gerri are not in it.


Despite the wistful melancholy of its theme, this is a delicious, savvy, and resonant film, peppered with irreverent wit and real feeling. Do not miss it.


(Trivia note: look out for Phil Davis—Sheen's co-star in High Hopes, pictured above—in a cameo in Another Year as a guest at a backyard BBQ.)

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

SINS OF OMISSION


Sorry, but I'm not one of those people who gets all worked up about Oscar's sins of omission. I know my personal taste in movies is way off in the outer limits of mainstream Hollywood culture, so I never expect the movies I like best in any given year to even be in the running, let alone win gold. Imagine my shock in 2009 when my second-favorite film of the previous year, Slumdog Millionaire, actually won the Academy Award for Best Picture. I figured either the Academy was getting smarter or I was getting more lenient in my dotage. Or Door Number Three: the Academy had been taken over by aliens, still the most logical explanation.


(What beat out Slumdog for my favorite movie of 2008? It was the magnificent The Fall, which went on to rank #3 in my Top Ten Movies of the Decade, although—surprise!—it received zero recognition from Academy voters.)


So I have to say that this year's Oscar nominations are at least (and at best) par for the course. This year's safe, "Masterpiece Theatre" entry, The King's Speech, cleans up in nominations—as well it might, excellent as it is in every department. Expanding the Best Picture category to 10 titles gives the Academy a chance to recognize some smaller, dark horse contenders that might formerly have slipped through the cracks at awards time (like the equally excellent—in its own, weird way—Winter's Bone), although we all know the five serious contenders are those whose directors are also nominated in their category. With the addition of Toy Story 3D, that places three of my personal 10 favorite movies of the year on Oscar's list—a pretty remarkable average, all things considered. (Hmmm ... maybe the Academy IS getting smarter...)


(Btw: conventional wisdom says that TS3D won't win because it's also up for Best Animated Feature, which it IS sure to win. Apropos of which, don't miss Wallace Baine's impassioned article calling on the Academy to disband the Animated Feature category and let the worthy animated films duke it out with the live action features. Good point, sez I. It's the message, not the medium; a beguiling film like TS3D (like the utterly wonderful Up last year, also nominated for Best Picture) is equal in emotional resonance, wit, and heart to any other film on the list—and superior to most.)


By now, we all know how often Oscar accolades are cumulative, honoring a body of work (think of John Wayne in Rooster Cogburn, or Paul Newman in The Color of Money, or Martin Scorsese for, erm, The Departed?). Or at least retroactive. Don't get me wrong, Heath Ledger deserved every inch of Oscar gold he won for his breathtaking Joker in The Dark Knight, but you know the Academy was suffering a collective case of (posthumous) bestowers' remorse over not having awarded him the Best Actor Oscar he so richly deserved for Brokeback Mountain a couple of years earlier. The retroactive factor is the primary reason we can expect to see Colin Firth claim the gold this year for The King's Speech, after his fine performance last year in A Single Man lost out to Jeff Bridges—who was winning HIS well-deserved cumulative award for Crazy Heart. (How Bridges himself managed to evade Oscar recognition for so long in such incredible performances as Fearless, and Starman remains one of the great mysteries of the age. Not to mention his criminally un-nominated performance as the scruffy, disorderly children's book author/artist in The Door in the Floor in 2004. He even did his own artwork!)



(Jeff Bridges in The Door in the Floor. Go stream it this minute!)


I'm convinced the main reason Johnny Depp was getting all those nominations for awhile (Finding Neverland; Sweeney Todd) was because Oscar voters neglected to hand him the gold after nominating him for Best Actor in the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie. I'm serious! Nothing against Sean Penn (who won that year for Mystic River), but any great actor can act. What Depp did was create a classic and enduring movie icon, virtually out of whole cloth. Captain Jack Sparrow as we know him was not conceived in the script or out of the director's vision; he sprang as fully-formed as Athena out of the fervid, goofball imagination of Johnny Depp.


But I digress. Despite my habitually lowered expectations, there is one especially glaring omission among this year's Oscar nominees that can neither be ignored nor rationalized away. The category is Best Actress, and, Academy voters, I have two little words to say to you: Noomi Rapace. She is, of course, the woman who played Lisbeth Salander in all three of the "Millenium Trilogy" movies released this year: The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played with Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest. Yes, the films and the performance are in Swedish, but that doesn't stop the incendiary Rapace from giving the iconic female movie performance of the year. It might be argued that the part itself is so iconic, half the actress' work is done for her, but an actress with one iota less of Rapace's guts, sass, vulnerability and smoldering righteousness could never have brought it off. Oscar voters, what were you thinking?



On the other hand, it's nice to see Christian Bale moving into the frontrunner's position in the Supporting Actor race. Although his career trajectory put him on the fast track for leading man roles early on, he's always been a character actor at heart, with a taste for the edgy. (How about his self-imploding insomniac in The Machinist, or downed Air Force pilot Dieter Dengler in Rescue Dawn? And what other actor would even consider American Psycho?) He's paid his Hollywood superhero dues as well, but he's savvy enough to know you don't win Oscars for playing Batman; you win them for playing The Joker. Bale gets his juicy Joker role in The Fighter, as a jittery, crack-addled ex-boxer running on the fumes of a once-promising life (and career), and he makes something pretty amazing out of it.


Finally, in the Heath Ledger Memorial "What's A Guy Gotta Do To Get An Oscar Around Here?" category, consider Christopher Nolan. It's one thing that he's not nominated for directing Inception, one of the year's most intriguing thrill rides (although the film itself made it on to Oscar's Top 10). But neither Nolan nor his phenomenal Memento was even nominated back in 2002. In both cases, Nolan at least snagged a screenwriting nomination (impossibly, he didn't win for the intricate and audacious Memento, losing to the safe bet, Gosford Park), but come on, kids, these movies don't direct themselves.


PS: If you want to see where the next generation of Christopher Nolans is coming from, drop by Open Projector Night on Thursday (Feb 3), 5-8 pm at the Vino Tabi Winery in the Swift Street Courtyard out on the West Side. Presented under the auspices of the Santa Cruz Film Festival, it's a chance for budding filmmakers to bring their short films (10 minutes or less) to show on a big screen before an appreciative audience. No entrance fee; first come, first screened. There'll be wine, munchies, and camaraderie; here's the lowdown.