Welcome to this week’s Weekly Round-Up, our collection of news from the film world that didn’t make it into recent reviews.
27th Portland Jewish Film Festival: June 16th–30th
The 27th Portland Jewish Film Festival is being held this year at the Northwest Film Center in downtown Portland, Oregon. Featuring 14 films, the Festival mostly focuses on contemporary Jewish film, including Promise at Dawn (2017) and A Fortunate Man (2018). Other screenings include more obscure, independent films, as well as H.K. Breslauer’s newly-restored The City Without Jews (1924). Check out the Festival website here. Tickets are $10 for the entire festival.
Good Omens (2019-)
After a few thousand years on earth, a rare-book-collecting angel and a sports-car-driving demon, who have become accustomed to their life in London and to each other, decide that they’re not really that ready for the impending apocalypse. Good Omens, Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s 1990 bestselling fantasy/Sci-Fi/comedy/etc. novel has finally been televised. Available on Amazon Prime Video, Good Omens stars a few A-listers, including David Tennant, Michael Sheen, Jon Hamm, and the voice of the brilliant Frances McDormand (as God, of course). I’m only a few episodes in, but it’s shaping up to be a good show.
Always Be My Maybe (2019)
Nahnatchka Khan‘s cinematic directorial debut, Always Be My Maybe, has been making some waves in the news recently. Starring Ali Wong and Randall Park (also a star of Khan’s Fresh Off the Boat [2015-] star), this Netflix original has been lauded for deconstructing Asian stereotypes. Keanu Reeves also acts.
Over the past few weeks, a number of new biopics have been released. First, there was Tolkien (2019), a look into the life of Lord of the Rings writer J.R.R. Tolkien. More recently came Rocketman (2019), a taste of musician Elton John‘s famed life. For an interesting look at the genre of biopics, check out Anthony Lane’s “Why Make Movies About Writers?” for The New Yorker, which looks at Tolkien, as well as Kenneth Branagh‘s (rather unsuccessful) Shakespeare biopic, All is True (2018).