In Austin on Saturday night, the hot ticket was a surprise screening presented by Ain’t It Cool News at Fantastic Fest, the week-long festival of sci-fi, horror, and fantasy films. 200 attendees at the Alamo Drafthouse on South Lamar were treated to the first public showing of Mel Gibson‘s “Apocalypto,” with Gibson in attendance (and during a Q & A session comparing the film to current events in Iraq). AICN’s Harry Knowles offers his take on the new film, indieLOOP member Jennifer Brown calls the film one of her favorite of the fest, so far, and SXSW‘s Matt Dentler reports on his blog:
Apocalypto is not perfect. It’s also not complete (in fact, some of the finished effects will greatly improve some of the Mayan city scenes). What it is though, no matter what, is a fine adventure film with a charismatic lead character and some wonderfully choreographed action sequences. It’s Bravheart, with subtitles. Some of the social and political commentary may get lost beneath the massive amounts of blood and body parts, but that echoed throughout the entire evening: At the end of the day, audiences want to be entertained, and Apocalypto does the trick.
The festival continues through Thursday, September 28th in Austin, for more information, visit the Fantastic Fest website.