Does Sophia Really Need Help? (하나님 도와주세요)

Review of "White Rabbit" at TWIST by Three Dollar Bill Cinema.

Written by Katherine K, during TeenTix’s arts criticism training workshop, the Fall 2018 Press Corps Intensive.

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"White Rabbit" centers around Sophia, a Korean American queer woman who immigrated to the US when she was seven and lives in Koreatown, Los Angeles. She is a performance artist who often speaks at significant places where Koreans and Korean Americans gather. As someone who lived in Koreantown, I recognized many of the locations where scenes of the movie were filmed such as the Koreatown Plaza, making use of authentic locations.

As a Korean American I was able to understand many of the cultural insights and I felt this special connection to the movie. I really enjoyed it. There were also parts of the movie that were in Korean. For every movie, there’s different levels of understanding and this is one of the reasons why I got to a deeper connection than other films I’ve seen.

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Don’t Miss Outdoor Cinema this Summer!

Three movies, one delicious deal.


Our friends at Three Dollar Bill Cinema know that there's nothing better than settling down with a bag of popcorn and a movie--which is why they're not only offering FREE outdoor movies this year, but a ~special deal~ on popcorn for TeenTix Members!

That's right, TeenTix Members can get FREE popcorn when they show their TeenTix Pass at the concession stand!

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SPECIAL OFFER: See Eighth Grade for FREE!

SIFF is hooking it up for TeenTix Members!


Our ~super generous~ friends at Seattle International Film Festival are offering TeenTix Members TWO HUNDRED (200) complimentary tickets for their screening of the film Eighth Grade next Thursday, July 19 @ 7:00 PM!

The film weeds through the minefield that is modern adolescence through the view of Kayla, a thoughtful 13-year-old girl on the precipice of completing junior high. A social media life coach of sorts, Kayla produces YouTube videos to her imaginary subscribers about self-love and confidence, yet can't quite put these into practice in her own life. Eighth Grade was written and directed by YouTube musical comedy heartthrob Bo Burnham, who you also might recognize from his two Netflix specials! Peep the trailer right here:

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La Vie Magnifique de Charlie, le Film Très Magnifique

Review of ​La Vie Magnifique de Charlie at Langston Hughes African American Film Festival. Written by TeenTix Press Corps Member Jessie B.


La Vie Magnifique de Charlie premiered in Seattle at the Langston Hughes African American Film Festival on April 20. A short film by Sewra G. Kidane, titled Proclamation Punctuation, showed before the feature film.

Official Gifs for Gee Spot Cine fashion film Proclamation Punctuation ... an homage to the exclamation point!!

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CONSTANT SPACE at Local Sightings Film Festival

Constant Space

In the first seconds of the film, a dark screen appears and fuzzy neon green text slowly types the message: It is the distant future. Mankind has conquered many galaxies, but the universe is vast. The mega-corporation Apocalypse Inc. has dispatched exploration vessels to discover new resources and possibly new life. The following is a journey of Syrinx-87.” This opening statement is frozen on the screen for a full 75 seconds before launching into the one hour and 13-minute long feature film, “Constant Space”.

“Constant Space” is a claymation space adventure filmed with a vintage Super 8 camera. The filmmaker Emmett Fifield, Snohomish native, wrote the script at the age of 16 and began filming at 18.

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“I Am Not Your Negro”: All Too Real Today

by Haley Witt, TeenTix Member & Seattle University Spectator Staff Writer

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As the film opens, the voice of Samuel L. Jackson is rich and deep—almost booming. His capacity for intensity made him an arguably perfect choice to narrate this documentary. Typewriter clicks accompanied words on the screen, words from a letter written by James Baldwin to his literary agent. In the correspondence, he described the book he was writing, which would be titled “Remember This House”. After his death in 1987, Baldwin’s book remained unfinished. Director of “I Am Not Your Negro”, Raoul Peck, reimagined Baldwin’s work, integrating the manuscript with photographs and videos of not only Baldwin, but his friends Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Medgar Evers, and others.

The film does not follow a chronological structure, nor does it develop a “linear” thesis. Instead, it is organized into many separate chapters, with titles such as “Heroes” or “Witness”. Baldwin’s manuscript opens each chapter, and is quickly woven in and out of cinematic breaks. The film acknowledged that Baldwin’s words are irresistibly applicable to the modern racial climate, seizing the opportunity to diverge from Civil Rights Era footage. The faces of Tamir Rice, Trayvon Martin, and others flashed on the screen toward the end of the movie.

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Spring Break RULES with Reel Grrls!

​These two amazing classes start this Spring - but there's a limited amount of time to apply!


Looking to step up your media skills this Spring? You've come to the very specific, totally right place. Reel Grrls is offering TWO short classes in April that YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT.

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SIFF’s FutureWave Expands the Role of Teens in the Film Community

by Naomi

We’ve all seen movies. We all have our opinions. But who would think that a teenager’s opinion of movies could impact anything? Seattle International Film Festival’s FutureWave program gives teens just that opportunity—for their opinions to matter and be taken seriously in the world of film.

SIFF’s FutureWave program allows youth to participate in the reviewing process of movies playing at the festival. For the 2015 festival, seven FutureWave Youth Jury members, 13-18 years old, viewed eight predetermined films and then deliberated to decide which would be awarded as Best FutureWave Feature, taking all aspects of the contending films, from plot to cinematography to acting, into their deliberations. The teen jurors were even invited to attend the Golden Space Needle Awards brunch at the top of the Space Needle to present the award.

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Everyday Living in Extraordinary Circumstances

​Review of Tangerines at SIFF by Sophia G.

It is 1992. In Georgia, a civil war is tearing the country apart. Estonian settlers are fleeing back to Estonia to escape. In the midst of this, Ivo and his neighbor Margus, both senior Estonian men, tend to their tangerine crop. They want to stay until the last of their tangerines is harvested, despite the war that’s coming increasingly near. When two injured soldiers turn up near their houses, Ivo and Margus take them in and care for them.

Such is the premise of writer and director Zaza Urushadze’s movie Tangerines, a film that is a moving tribute to the individual people whose lives are disrupted in wartime. Though it’s set in Georgia, it could easily be set anywhere, in any war. The theme of overcoming divisions and recognizing others’ humanity is so universal it has been done a thousand times; yet this movie’s characters are such fully fleshed out people the story feels unique.

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The Future of Film is Here

​National Film Festival for Talented Youth (NFFTY) Hits Seattle This Weekend, a preview by Kali Swenson

It's finally that time of year again—the time to showcase young film directors from around the world. NFFTY is a stand out among film festivals for precisely the reason stated in its title; it's "for talented youth." Don't be thinking amateur, though. The directors, all under age 24, of NFFTY's selections have the creativity, skills, and vision to put them on par with the best. These are high quality, well-produced, and impressively directed films with beautiful cinematography and compelling acting.

Spanning the weekend of April 23 through 26, NFFTY features all types of film, from comedy and drama to horror, animation, and documentary. All featured films are shorts gathered into themed groups—like Northwest Life, Edge of Your Seat, and Musical Masterpiece—for screenings. So attending one showing at NFFTY actually means seeing several films!

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How to Follow Your Heart

​Review of Sarah Prefers to Run at Seattle Lesbian and Gay Film Festival by K. Gibbs

Running is the focus of Sarah’s life, as much a part of it as breathing or sleeping. She cannot imagine life without it and wants to continue running at college in Montreal. But standing in her way is a lack of money and opposition from her mother. As Sarah fights to keep running, Sarah Prefers to Run portrays the struggle of doing what you love, no matter the cost.

When asked why she does track and field, Sarah simply states that she loves to run. It’s that simple. Finding her way to college, though? Not so much. Since her parents don’t have the money to pay for college, Sarah has to come up with another plan. The solution presents itself in her coworker, Antoine, who is also heading to Montreal. In order to get money from the government to help pay for school, the two decide to get married despite the fact that they barely know each other.

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The Hacktivist Crusader

​Review of The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz at Northwest Film Forum by Kally Patz

It’s clear throughout The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz that director Brian Knappenberger is partial to his documentary’s subject. But who can blame him? The blossoming programming prodigy turned enemy of the system is lovable from the moment he steps on screen.

Though Swartz has all the makings of a hero, he carries it with dorky accessibility. Friends and family describe him encouraging his brother to dress as a computer for Halloween, predating Wikipedia in his bedroom, and collaborating to develop Creative Commons at 14 years old.

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The Complete Ai Weiwei

​Review of Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case at Northwest Film Forum by Kally Patz

The photo on Ai Weiwei’s Wikipedia page is reverent. Luminous against a stony backdrop, he looks stoic, resilient. It’s an image fitting of a lone artist taking on the Chinese government, the sort that would win the praise of Ai’s media following and fans.

It would also make a great cover for a film. But that’s not the story Andreas Johnsen tells in his new documentary, Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case. In the film, Johnsen takes no pains to glorify Ai Weiwei. His goals were to spend as many hours with Ai as possible and to depict the artist’s vision of China. Johnsen never sits the family down for a heart-wrenching interview. He doesn’t propel Ai’s actions with music or effects.

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Conveying Humanity

​Review of Life Feels Good at SIFF by Emily Hall

Life Feels Good, directed by Maciej Pieprzyca, is a feature-length Polish film chronicling the adventures of a man named Mateusz, who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at a young age despite his mother’s best efforts to convince her family and the doctors that he is more than a vegetable. Narration makes clear from the beginning the truth of his mental capabilities as he struggles to tell the outside world of his understanding in order to gain access to the world of being known and knowing the world that he sees his siblings enjoy.

Rather than simplify or romanticize, the film portrays the complexity of Mateusz’s ordeal and the experience of his family around him. While often emotional, Pieprzyca directed a sometimes uncomfortable, often charming, and overwhelmingly witty and whimsical film. The combination of what feels like a futile struggle to be understood and an understanding of life gleamed from a sheltered and somewhat unconventional exposure to it leaves one unexpectedly fascinated.

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SIFF Recommendations: Week 3 and Beyond

​May 30 - June 8

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Wetlands Screenings: May 30 and June 6 Not for the queasy or the prude, Wetlands is a bizarrely tuned exploration of the teenage psyche in the aftermath of trauma. Seventeen-year-old Helen’s hygienic and sexual habits frame her story. She’s an average teenager, except that she does a lot of things with her body that would make anyone else sick. Somehow Wetlands makes these happenings (often involving bodily fluids) intriguing, laughable, and maybe even understandable. It’s a compelling watch, if you can stomach it. - Kali S.

Ballet 422 Screenings: June 2 and 3 There’s no doubt that ballet is absolutely fascinating. The limber bodies, flowing costumes, and synchronized music of even the most standard ballet performance can leave viewers in awe. But what does it take to create that effect? Ballet 422 offers some insight. The documentary follows choreographer Justin Peck as he creates the New York City Ballet’s 422nd original piece. Not too surprisingly, the creative process rivals the result. - Kali S.

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A “Perfect” Baby

​Review of B for Boy at SIFF by Kelsey G.

B for Boy is a powerful film about one strong woman’s struggle between staying true to herself and following her Igbo culture. Amaka is a 40-year-old Nigerian woman who is pregnant with her second child. Her first child is a daughter, so during this pregnancy there is pressure from her culture and her husband’s family to bear a son. If she does not bear a son there is the possibility that her husband will take a second wife.

During the third trimester of her pregnancy, a few days after she learns she is having a boy, the baby dies in utero and she learns she cannot conceive any more children. To add to that struggle, her husband’s brother dies, leaving her husband as the sole heir of the family name, putting even more pressure on Amaka to have a boy. As the movie continues it shows the story of how she deals with that knowledge and how much outside pressure she receives to have a boy and what it pushes her to do.

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A Tender Teenage Tale

​Review of Boys at SIFF by Vida Behar

Boys, a film from the Netherlands directed by Mischa Kamp is unbearably tender. It’s about Sieger, a 15-year-old who is recently motherless during a stifling summer in which he grapples with his burgeoning attraction toward Marc, his new track-and-field teammate.

The setting of the film is beautiful, especially the prominently featured pond area. There's an old rickety bridge, dark murky waters, lily pads scattered across the mirror-like surface of the water, and a leafy canopy — all of these contributing greatly to the intensity of the scenes. The beauty of nature is actually an important theme of Boys, because it mirrors the beauty between Sieger and Marc.

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Six African Shorts

​Review of African Metropolis at SIFF by Daniel G.

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I’ll start right off by saying the one element of African Metropolis anyone can enjoy is that it starts off fast. There’s no fancy or a drawn out introduction sequence. That being said, the rest of the film is an utter rollercoaster. It’s actually six short 10-15 minute films, and each one is drastically different. Thus the only way to properly criticize and praise the film is to review the films individually.

The first film, "Homecoming," set in Nairobi, is the tale of a man obsessed with an engaged woman. He escapes into fantasy worlds where he saves her life, but in each daydream the man is still defeated by her fiancée. From a psychological standpoint it’s fascinating, but the poor acting and pacing make the film suffer as a whole, which is too bad because I couldn’t help but wonder if this idea could’ve been fleshed out and made this opening story more engaging in return.

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24 Hour Photo

​Review of Time Lapse at SIFF by Daniel G.

This is one of the most heart-pounding movies I've ever seen. It's a brilliant psychological and supernatural story that asks the question, “What would you do if you knew your future exactly 24 hours ahead of time?” Though it sounds tacky, Time Lapse is far from it.

The story, though it has a couple additional characters, mostly focuses on three friends and roommates: Jasper, Finn, and Callie. The group finds one of their local residents missing, and when they go to check on him, they find a machine that shoots photos into their living room, but with the added twist that it's 24 hours into the future. And from there things go into the obvious downward spiral of distrust and tragedy.

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