Somehow, the universe aligned in such a way to bring three different film festivals to Long Beach on the same weekend, starting the wave of film festivals coming this fall. If you're not sure which fest to make it out to, here's a handy guide to the slates of films offered to help you decide and plan—plus a tiny preview of what's to come. Let's do this!
LONG BEACH INDIE FESTIVAL
Geared toward the next Spielberg, LBIF focuses on film, media and music. Most of the programming consists of short films, feature documentaries and fascinating panel discussions on race, diversity, gender, sexuality and representation, among other socio-cultural issues. There's also a college and career fair, workshops, and the Long Beach Indie Definition of Independence Awards Gala. It all takes place at Cinemark at the Pike (99 S. Pine Ave., Long Beach, 562-435-5754) and Long Beach Convention Center (300 E. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, 562-436-3636).
HIGHLIGHTS: Our interest is piqued by the titles of the panels, especially “Questioning Media/Questioning History: The Case of Mexican Social Movements, Latino Men and Malcolm X”; “Monsters, Torture Porn and Depictions of Women in Horror Films”; “Understanding Why You Need Representation in Hollywood”; and “Black Male Images on the Big Screen.” Check out Alejandra Leibovich's Hitching a Ride to Entropy, a documentary on global artist Aleloop, who culled together a flash mob of acrobats, artists, weirdos, cars and performance artists for a giant art happening at Art Basel, Miami.
For more info, visit www.longbeachindie.hollywoodpost.com. Through Sun.
CAMBODIA TOWN FILM FESTIVAL
CTFF is four years old! The red carpet will be out at the Art Theatre (2025 E. Fourth St., Long Beach; 562-438-5435) for this showcase of narrative and short films, documentaries, and rereleases of classic Cambodian films. Authentic Cambodian culture will be displayed in performances by Khmer Arts Academy on Sunday after The King's Last Song, a documentary on King Norodom Sihanouk's efforts to build Cambodian art and dance. The opening-night soiree takes place at Sophy's Cambodian and Thai Cuisine (3240 E. Pacific Coast Hwy., Long Beach, 562-494-1763).
HIGHLIGHTS: If you enjoyed the Cambodian rock & roll doc Don't Think I've Forgotten, check out Not Easy Rock n' Roll, a documentary on the resurgence of the 1960s and '70s psych sound revived by Cambodian Space Project, a band started by an Australian musician and a poor-but-talented village girl after a chance meeting at a karaoke bar. Also a must-see is The Gate, a suspense thriller set during the reign of the Khmer Rouge in which a French ethnologist is captured and accused of being a CIA spy.
Find more info at cambodiatownfilmfestival.com. Fri.-Sun.
2016 LONG BEACH QFILM FESTIVAL
Located at the Art Theatre and the LGBTQ Center of Long Beach (2017 E. Fourth St., Long Beach, 562-434-4455), this year's festival delves into incredible intersectional perspectives and voices from people throughout the LGBTQ spectrum, with proceeds going to the Center. Now in its 23rd year, expect an Open House Filmmakers Gallery, after-parties at Hamburger Mary's, a midnight screening of the Rocky Horror Picture Show with a live shadow cast (get ready to do the “Time Warp” again!), Brunch at the Center, and more.
HIGHLIGHTS: The Queer and Trans People of Color and the Men In Briefs shorts blocks are both followed by Q&As with filmmakers and talent. Bruising for Besos is already earning plenty of buzz for tackling the issue of domestic violence in lesbian relationships; the screening is followed by a Q&A. Ingrid Jungermann's comedy Women Who Kill focuses on two ex-girlfriends and co-hosts of a true-crime podcast who are suddenly suspicious of each other as a new relationship comes between them.
Visit www.qfilmslongbeach.com for more details. Sept. 8-11.
SAVE THE DATE!
The Fifth Annual San Pedro International Film Festival is a 10-day fest merging the worlds of film, music, art and technology, with special demos on the virtual reality technology used in cinema. Visit SPIFFest.org for more info. Oct. 6-16.
OC Film Fiesta, the annual film festival held in downtown Santa Ana, celebrates its opening night at Bowers Museum. Already announced programming includes 1920s Bolivian silent film Wara Wara; the enthralling No Más Bebés documentary on the mass sterilization of Latina immigrant mothers during the 1960s and '70s; and Trisha Ziff's The Man Who Saw Too Much, about Mexican photojournalist Enrique Metinides. Check www.facebook.com/filmfiesta for more details. Oct. 13-29.
Aimee Murillo is calendar editor and frequently covers film, arts, and Latino culture, and previously contributed to the OCW’s long-running fashion column, Trendzilla. Raised in Santa Ana, she loves weird movies, raising her plants, antiquing, and smoking weed on a rainy night. This bio might be copied/pasted from her Bumble bio.