The Newport Beach Festival 2012 begins this Thursday and will continue for a week with film screenings in movie houses throughout the city, just a few blocks away from its gorgeous coastline. As in previous years, the festival will give moviegoers the opportunity to check out close to 350 films representing 40 countries and to hear, learn and ask questions from some of the film directors and other key people involved in the creation of the stories. Following are five films showcased this year by the Newport Beach Festival.
An Affair of the Heart: The Journey of Rick Springfield and his Devoted Fans
This documentary by Emmy award winner Sylvia Caminer takes the viewer back 30 years to the time when Australian Rick Springfield became a sensation in the U.S. with his song “Jessie’s Girl” and when American females fell in love with him on “General Hospital.” The film combines the experiences of loving fans who have followed the star throughout his career with his own interviews, biography and performances.
Irvine Welsh’s Ecstasy
Directed by Rob Heydon, this dark romantic comedy is based on the short story “The Undefeated” out of the book Ecstasy, written by Irvine Welsh. It stars Adam Sinclair and Kristin Kreuk in a tale about a couple who loves each other, loves drugs, or loves to be drugged and is drugged into love. The film was shot in early 2011 in Scotland, Amsterdam and Canada.
Payback is a documentary film directed by Jennifer Baichwal based on Margaret Atwood’s book “Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth.” It discusses debt in more than its monetary meaning – the debt people accrue with one another at a personal, environmental, spiritual, criminal and other levels. To that end, the movie discusses family feuds, oil spills, employment relationships, the justice system and more.
Directed by Michael Brown, this film follows 11 veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars as they try to heal themselves by joining an expedition to climb Mount Boluche, the 20,000 foot Himalayan giant. With members representing almost every branch of the military, this is an emotional story accompanied by breathtaking views of this part of the world that only a few get to see up-close and personally.
The Love Guide (a.k.a. Sunnyside Up)
The Love Guide is a comedy directed by Derek Estin Purvis starring Parker Posey. Angelica Lovecraft (Posey’s character) is a New Age guru and the hostess of a reality show entitled “Cut the Crap” that contemplates Zen and capitalism to try to remove the waste from people’s lives. She convinces a chicken farmer in economic distress to be on her show and the interaction with her and her husband becomes the plot of this entertaining comedy just released this year.