The 22nd Annual Austin Film Festival
AFF Quick Cuts
Here's three more recos for the fest
Jack's ApocalypseJack Coleman has lost it. His family gone, his career deflated, he spends his time doing endless lines of cocaine and picking up girls on Sixth Street. That is until a wake-up call from his brother – a major in the military – tells him the world is ending from a concentrated terrorist attack. Jack flees to his hometown with his brother's wife and daughter in tow as society collapses around them. Jack's Apocalypse blends drama, humor, and scares deftly, but it is Dave Maldonado as the titular addict who anchors the film with a searing performance. This is Will James Moore's third feature to hit AFF, and definitely his most assured.
Friday, Oct. 30, 9:30pm, Galaxy Highland; Wednesday, Nov. 4, 9:45pm, State Theatre
Until 20James Ragan knows he's going to die. When he was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer at age 13, he had to give up his dreams of becoming a tennis star. This doc follows the tribulations of James' ordeal (six surgeries in seven years and countless chemotherapy treatments), but also shows how he uses his privilege to help those suffering around him, by holding fundraisers and reaching out to other cancer patients. His constant optimism is tempered by a family who struggles to balance quality of life vs. the length of it. Powerful stuff.
Friday, Oct. 30, 5:30pm, Paramount Theatre
HeadfirstEssi Kurhinen has reached her limit. If her daughter, Takku, gets into one more fight at school, she will be taken into state custody. Having switched schools six times (she's in ninth grade), that may prove a problem. Luckily, there's a support system of boozy failures and ne'er-do-wells to rise to the cause in this Finnish black comedy that raises the bar for dysfunctional families. "We don't go on dates here. We get drunk and let nature take its course," Essi remarks at one point. Did I mention there's a mystic who gleans prophecies from wild rabbits?
Friday, Oct. 30, 8:45pm, Hideout Theatre; Tuesday, Nov. 3, 10:45pm, Alamo Village