UCLA Adds Spanish Lake Documentary to Class Syllabus

Categories: Movies

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via
A Spanish Lake resident talks about his hometown in the documentary.
A Spanish Lake filmmaker's poignant documentary about his hometown's rapid decline is gaining traction at universities across the country.

The University of California, Los Angeles is the first school to add the newly released Spanish Lake to a class syllabus. Students will watch the film for the course Urban Planning M275: Community Development and Housing Policy, during the second week of classes, which focus on the role of the state in housing.


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Internet Cat Video Festival: Vote For Your Favorite St. Louis Cat Video Right Meow

Categories: Animals, Movies

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Doug Woods via Flickr
Can I haz vote?
Before the Contemporary Art Museum screens this year's curated collection of lol-able cat videos at St. Louis' first ever Internet Cat Video Festival, one very special cat video will play.

Six local feline enthusiasts are competing to win the St. Louis Cat Video Contest, hoping their one-minute cat short will win social media votes and the approval of museum staff to eventually play at the start of each night of the two-night festival, July 18 and 19.

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The Lou Abides: Big Lebowski Fans Launch Campaign to Bring Festival to St. Louis

Categories: Movies

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Photos courtesy of Marcus Bautista
Marcus Bautista looks amazingly like Walter Sobchak from The Big Lebowski -- especially with a can of ashes and a gun.
If all goes according to plan, tonight's The Big Lebowski-themed shindig on Cherokee Street will be the start of a citywide, all-Lebowski festival here in St. Louis.

"St. Louis is ready," says Marcus Bautista, who won the award for best Walter Sobchak costume at New Orleans' Lebowski Fest last year. To have a good time, Lebowski fans just need plenty of booze, a place to watch the movie and some quality bowling lanes. "I think this is the perfect town for it."


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Spanish Lake, Documentary on St. Louis White Flight, Will Play Another Week at the Tivoli

Categories: Movies

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YouTube
Spanish Lake is showing at the Tivoli Theatre.
If you missed Phillip Andrew Morton's unflinching look at the impact social engineering and white flight had his hometown Spanish Lake, you're in luck. After two weekends topping the Tivoli Theatre's box office, the documentary Spanish Lake will play an additional week: Showtimes have been extended till July 3.

Morton chronicles the degeneration of Spanish Lake, where he grew up before earning a film degree at Webster University and moving to California, in his new film, which opened June 13. The unincorporated township grew into an idyllic, mostly middle class white refuge at the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers in the post-war years.

"They were the Tea Party before the Tea Party existed," Morton tells Daily RFT. "They were anti-government. They wanted very little government interaction with what they could and could not do."


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Marshall the Miracle Dog and Four More Movies Filmed in Southern Illinois

Categories: Movies

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Mike Bizelli
The real-life Marshall.
Since the first casting call, producers for the movie Marshall the Miracle Dog have described it as very St. Louis.

The story is based on a real dog rescued from a Missouri hoarder, healed by a veterinarian at the Humane Society of Missouri and adopted by a St. Louis woman.

"This is truly a St. Louis film," says Cyndi Willenbrock, who adopted Marshall and also serves as a producer for the movie starring Sinbad, Shannon Elizabeth and Matthew Settle. "One hundred percent of our investment came from the region, students from throughout the area are cast as extras, and Notifi Records owner Ira DeWitt's great soundtrack includes St. Louis up-and-comers. There is so much talent here."

See also: Sinbad Plays a Coach in New Movie Filming in St. Louis, Marshall the Miracle Dog

After producers started filming across the Mississippi River in Edwardsville, Illinois, Daily RFT couldn't help but wonder what other famous flicks are set in the Metro East.

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"Pain Don't Hurt": Moolah Theatre Celebrates 25th Anniversary of Road House

Categories: Go!, Movies

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Wikipedia
A very special film is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, and as far as we know, only one theater in the country will be throwing a party in its honor -- and it will happen right here in St. Louis.

This film isn't The Little Mermaid. It's not Driving Miss Daisy. It's not Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, though someone really should break out the party hats for that.

No, the memorable 1989 flick in question stars Patrick Swayze as a bar bouncer in a roadside Missour-uh bar who does a fine job of roughing up some corrupt businessmen. Naturally, we're talking about Road House, and the Moolah Theatre & Lounge is coordinating a big anniversary shindig for Friday and Saturday, May 30 and 31.

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Sinbad Plays a Coach in New Movie Filming in St. Louis, Marshall the Miracle Dog

Categories: Animals, Movies

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jcrawford3505 on Flickr
Sinbad will play the coach of the boy who rescues Marshall the miracle dog.
If you ever had a crush on the hot dad from Gossip Girl, the uber-hot foreign exchange student from American Pie or (we're not judging) Sinbad, you're in luck. A new movie filming in St. Louis brings all three of those actors -- and even more you've only slightly heard of -- to town.

Marshall the Miracle Dog, a family-friendly romp about a rescue dog who "rescues" the hearts of the humans around him, announced its cast list this week. Almost three-quarters of the actors and extras are from St. Louis or have connections to the Lou, which is hardly a surprise given that more than 2,000 St. Louis residents attended the open casting call last month.

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Soccer and a Military Coup Collide in St. Louis Filmmaker's ESPN 30 for 30, The Opposition

Categories: Movies, Sports

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Jeff Plunkett
Jeff Plunkett directs ESPN's new 30 for 30 documentary.
Chile's 1974 World Cup team qualified for the international tournament by scoring a goal against no one in a stadium turned into a concentration camp.

This haunting but little-known piece of history is the subject of a new ESPN 30 for 30 documentary premiering tonight, The Opposition, from director, producer and St. Louis native Jeffrey Plunkett.


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Former NPR Producer Brings Three "Crazy Talented" Young French Filmmakers To STL

Categories: Arts, Movies

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via
Theo Reynal, one of three French filmmakers who spent two weeks scouting locations in St. Louis
Seán Collins is a consummate veteran radio producer. The St. Louisan spent twenty years producing for NPR on national shows like All Things Considered, Morning Edition and This American Life.

But Collins never produced a film. Until now. In 2009, he became enamored with the talent of a sixteen-year-old French filmmaker, Aurélien Loevenbruck. Two weeks ago, Collins brought Loevenbruck and two other teenaged film prodigies to St. Louis to scout locations for an ambitious historical epic.

"They look youthful, they are youthful, but they're crazy talented," says Collins, who is co-writing the script for The Ground Beneath Our Feet. "They get how to tell this kind of story."

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Tivoli Marquee Honors Memory of Beloved Ticket Taker John Thompson

Categories: Movies

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Photos by Lindsay Toler
The Tivoli Theatre marquee pays special tribute to John Thompson.
Since 1979, it was John Thompson's job to welcome moviegoers to his cherished Tivoli Theatre, and regulars often saw him out front changing the movie titles on the marquee with a smile on his face.

Now, Thompson himself is on the marquee. After he died of a heart attack last Wednesday, his coworkers kept his spirit alive with a touching tribute, which reads: "'All I ever really wanted to be was a kind person.' RIP John Thompson."

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