On Saturday, August 15th, I drove up to Monroe, New York with lead actors Mike Wesolowski and Mary Goggin to attend the Hudson Valley International Film Festival, where You Can't Put Your Arms Around A Memory screened at 10:35 AM in Theater 3. Here is a link to the festival schedule, where you can see a nice write-up about the film. To the right, you'll see a picture of us on the festival's red carpet. We enjoyed a nice day of seeing the film in a lovely new theater, attending a few other films and enjoying the charm of small-town Monroe.
a link to their full schedule). Le Chat Noir, which hosted the event, did a wonderful job promoting the festival and championing the movies, including posting about our film on Facebook with a great write-up - I truly wish I could have been there. You can see pictures from their excellent screening below (here's a link to one of their posters they had up for the festival, which you'll see prominently features my crayon drawing poster for the film)!
won the Best Student Film prize at the Black Cat Picture Show at their award ceremony!
Here's an article from Metro Spirit about the Black Cat Picture Show, and a picture of their awards before the festival began.
at 7:30 PM at the Santa Monica Playhouse. Here is a link to all of their Official Selections and their screening schedule, as well as our film's page on their website, where they posted an extremely kind write-up about our film:
the SaMo Indie website here).
Austin Film Festival at the Paramount Theatre on Friday, October 30th at 2:00 PM. Director Nancy Buirski will be there for a Q&A. I'm thrilled to go back to Austin for the screening and see many of the other films at this year's festival, including Todd Haynes's Carol, Paolo Sorrentino's Youth, John Crowley's Brooklyn and Brian Helgeland's Legend. It will be particularly exciting to see By Sidney Lumet at the Paramount, a theatre where I've seen countless films and enjoyed many of the seminal theatrical experiences of my life - Lawrence of Arabia, 2001: A Space Odyssey and The Godfather among them.
our Facebook page for more information, and I'm excited for everyone to get to see this movie about one of the greatest filmmakers of all time, whose work - from Dog Day Afternoon (1975) to Network (1976) to Prince of the City (1981) - has inspired me for years.
our IMDB page for the film!
screened Jack and Lucas Go To A Wedding for the first time at NYU. Before the screening started, Alex Fofonoff premiered an exclusive trailer for his feature film Blood and Thunder, in which I have the honor of starring. In that sense, it was a night showcasing some of my acting and directing. We had an incredible turn out, with almost every seat filled in the theater. Thank you so much to everyone who came out to see Jack and Lucas Go To A Wedding - you are all the best! Lucas and I appreciate it so much.
After a mid-day visit to Venice Beach (and the chance to meet up with Spencer again at a nearby restaurant), we had dinner Saturday night with our friend from high school, Elizabeth Lefebvre, in West Hollywood.
On Sunday, Bolton and I drove out to Universal Studios and enjoyed an awesome day there. Because Bolton's wonderful grandmother, Myr, kindly bought us Front of Line passes for the day, we were able to ride almost all of the Universal rides without any wait, including the rides for Jurassic Park, The Simpsons, Minions, The Mummy and Transformers - not to mention taking the official studio tour, where we went through the Universal backlot and were treated to recreations and tributes to films such as Psycho, Jaws and King Kong. As with Warner Bros., Universal has such a rich cinema history, with Alfred Hitchcock and Steven Spielberg among the iconic filmmakers who help define the studio.
I turned twenty-five in August, and to commemorate it, here's a throwback video to my first birthday party in 1991, a now-1990s-period-piece at Waterloo Ice House in Austin with memorable appearances from the late, great John Kyser, Richie Donnelly, Hazel Smith and Cathy McElroy.
Jack's 1st Birthday - August 5th, 1991 from Jack Kyser on Vimeo.
Also, here's a video of the Kyser family in New York in 1996, including my father, mother and me on top of the World Trade Center.
The Kyser Family in New York - 1996 from Jack Kyser on Vimeo.
the High School Film Film Festival, organized and curated by Blood and Thunder cinematographer Oliver Anderson. It featured a lot of early films made in high school by NYU graduates, including a fun short I directed called Brokeback Santa. Here's the link to the full slate of shorts - you can see Brokeback Santa at 3:55.
one from Variety about how the film should have been a major Oscar contender, and another with Mann speaking about the film. Mann released his first film in six years earlier this year, the masterful Blackhat, which was as artful an action film as you'll find and criminally overlooked by audiences.
Magic in the Moonlight, with Stone and Colin Firth as charming as they've ever been - here's an excellent interview with Allen from the The Wall Street Journal); Maya Forbes's very moving Infinitely Polar Bear, featuring another wonderful performance from one of the best actors alive, Mark Ruffalo; Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, which may surpass all other Mission Impossible movies as the best one yet, and, for my money, the best action movie of the summer; The Wolfpack, a documentary that made want to compare 30-best lists with the Angulo brothers (I love that multiple brothers agree that Oliver Stone's JFK is #2) - here's an excellent article from The New Yorker on The Wolfpack, a piece on watching Goodfellas with the Angulo brothers, and a video of the brothers meeting their hero, Robert De Niro; Joel Edgerton's The Gift, which scared me enough that I let out a loud yelp in the cinema; Inside Out, which may very well be my favorite Pixar movie and brought me such joy that I now own a Bing Bong action figure; Colin Trevorrow's Jurassic World, which has hilarious Vincent D'Onofrio hovering and iconic Chris Pratt riding with his Velociraptors (the only thing Jurassic World is missing is Jeff Goldblum emerging from the darkness in the old Jurassic Park bunker, channeling Tim Robbins in War of the Worlds or something - "So you kids want to learn about the original Jurassic Park, eh? Follow me."); Thomas Vinterberg's beautiful Far from the Madding Crowd; Shira Piven's darkly hilarious Welcome to Me, with a great performance from Kristen Wiig; Stevan Riley's extraordinary documentary Listen to Me Marlon; and, lastly, David Wain and Michael Showalter's Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp, which, as its own four-hour movie, is one of the funniest comedies ever made.
an article from Film Comment on the greatness of Pacino's recent work, and here's my ranking of Pacino's performances on MUBI. John Lahr wrote a great New Yorker article on Pacino last year, and here's an excellent video accompaniment to Lahr's article. In an interview with The Talks earlier this year, Pacino said, "You can't let your skin get too thick." It's a welcome return to the screen for Pacino, who I last saw onscreen in 2013's Stand Up Guys, a very enjoyable hang-out movie with Pacino, Christopher Walken and Alan Arkin.
as Sam Adams wrote in this great IndieWire article, "the Oscars haven't abandoned movies with mass-audience appeal... it's theatrical audiences who, with rare exceptions, have abandoned anything but big-budget spectacle."