Two stellar SXSW 2007 world premieres, Ronnie Bronstein’s Frownland and Lanre Olabisi’s August The First, will screen in New York this weekend as part of the Gotham Awards’ “Best Film Not Playing At A Theater Near You” nominees series.
August The First will screen at MoMA on Friday, November 16 and Sunday, November 18. The synopsis from their site is:
A powerful drama in which old tensions resurface—and a family is torn apart—when a son invites his estranged father in Nigeria back to the United States for his graduation party. First-time feature director Olabisi, who shot August the First almost entirely in his mother’s suburban home, is remarkably attuned to the language and behavior of middle-class American life.
Frownland, on the other hand, screens at MoMA on Saturday, November 17 and then Monday, November 19 with an introduction by Bronstein himself. The synopsis from the site:
A self-described “troll from under the bridge,” the painfully awkward Keith Sontag spends his days selling coupons door-to-door and his evenings trapped in a squalid apartment situated in some particularly hellish outer ring of New York. With the most basic elements of human communication a struggle, Sontag lurches through an uncaring city, attempting to aid a suicidal friend, evict an unctuous roommate, and simply attain some measure of self-respect. With Frownland, Bronstein has made a bold and bracing film that is both a hilarious black comedy and a ragged love letter to an earlier era of independent film. Both the film and its singular hero are raw, confrontational, and, finally, unforgettable.
Go check out these SXSW 2007 alumni, and tell them we said “hi.” Thanks to Gabe, for the reminder.