Archive for 2012

My Film Habit: Day 3 and the Early Shows

By Allison Lyzenga
My Film Habit

Don’t Stop Believin’: Everyman’s Journey (with the short The Problem of Gravity)

This next film I saw at the festival was pretty amazing. It’s a documentary from director Ramona S. Diaz about Arnel Pineda, the new Filipino lead singer for the band Journey. I don’t know if I’ve been living under a rock or something, but I had absolutely no idea that this had happened. First of all, I hadn’t realized that Journey was still touring, but then I also didn’t know that they snagged themselves a new, youthful front man. And, to make the story even more interesting, the band found Pineda on Youtube after he had posted several videos of himself singing with this cover band in Manila. This is such a remarkable story. Click here to read more.

Daylight Savings (with the short The Champions)

Night Three of the DC APA Film Festival had some pretty great selections of offer as well. The theme for these films seemed to be a lot lighter and breezier—perfect for a Saturday afternoon screening. The feature film in this early showcase was another bittersweet offering from Dave Boyle, starring the always-delightful Goh Nakamura. Click here to read more.


Today’s Highlights

We have a full day of events on tap for today. Some highlights from today include: Daniel Henney’s hotness, a little ’80s glam rock, and lots of touching.

Shanghai Calling
Screening Time: October 6, 8:00 pm
Venue: U.S. Navy Memorial
Run Time: 100 minutes

As Asia Pacific Arts found out in may, Daniel Henney is hot. He’s also in one of our Closing Night films.

When ambitious New York attorney Sam (Daniel Henney) is sent to Shanghai, he immediately stumbles into a legal mess that could end his career. With the help of a beautiful relocation specialist (Eliza Coupe), a well-connected old-timer (Bill Paxton), a clever journalist (Geng Le), and a street-smart legal assistant (Zhu Zhu), Sam might just save his job, find romance, and learn to appreciate the many wonders of this gorgeous, modern city.

Screening Time: October 6, 2:00 pm
Venue: Goethe-Institut
Run Time: 109 minutes

At V.I.P. Nails, a Vietnamese manicurist named Tam has a new customer: Brendan, a shy mechanic who literally has a problem on his hands. He can never get rid of the oil stains around his nails, and when he tries to be intimate with his aloof wife, she always rejects him with the same excuse: “Your hands are filthy!” Desperately seeking to save his marriage, Brendan goes to the nail salon every day, where Tam scrubs his hands clean and offers him advice on how to get his wife to love him again. But soon, Tam and Brendan find themselves drawn to each other, an attraction which becomes harder and harder to resist.

Don’t Stop Believin’: Everyman’s Journey
Screening Time: October 6, 6:00 pm
Venue: U.S. Navy Memorial
Run Time: 113 minutes

Halfway around the world, Journey, the iconic, quintessentially American rock band who recorded eight platinum-certified albums in during their heyday, has chosen a new lead singer in a manner befitting this internet age: they found him through YouTube.


My Film Habit on Day 2 of the DC APA Film Festival

By Allison Lyzenga
My Film Habit

Night two of the DC APA Film Fest was just as enchanting as the first. But, this showcase was about comedy. Raucous girl comedy, to be specific. Both of the films on the program exhibited a delightfully sassy sense of humor on the part of the directors, and both were really fun. Click here to read more.

The late night showing on night two of the DC APA Film Festival had a completely different vibe from the light comedy of the early show. This was the horror showcase, and it ended up being much scarier than I was anticipating. Click here to read more.


Showing Tonight: I Am A Ghost

The Film: “I am a Ghost”
Screening Time: 10:00 pm
The Venue: Goethe-Institute
Run Time: 75 minutes

Emily has issues. And they make it hard for her to leave her own house… even after her death.

Emily is a troubled spirit trapped in her own home. Day after day, she wonders why she can’t leave. Meanwhile, the living are eager to rid the house of her spirit. Enter Sylvia, the clairvoyant hired to get rid of her.

Once Sylvia arrives, Emily is forced into a patient/therapist relationship with her. Mysteries about Emily’s past are uncovered, but will they enable her to move on?

-Cherisse Yanit-Nadal


Showing Tonight: Sex, Friendship, and Rock & Roll

The Film: The Crumbles
Screening Time: 8:00 pm
The Venue: Goethe-Institut
Run Time: 75 minutes

How many of us have said this: We should start a band? Those of us who raised our hands know that those five little words unleash a crazy mash-up of emotion and a trajectory of events that either leads to the band’s success or disbandment.

This film follows Darla, who kicks off the action of this film convincing her friend that they should start a band.

Darla’s long lost best friend Elisa, a free spirit, has just moved back to Los Angeles after a devastating break-up. Because no one else in their group of friends is willing to help her out, Darla offers up her couch. And Elisa crashes there… indefinitely.

Soon, Darla realizes that Eliza is the perfect partner for the band she’s been wanting to start up. But, once the band gets rolling things start to work against them: obsession, insecurity, heartache, and hard-to-manage egos. They both share dreams of rock stardom, but can they be more than “the greatest band in the world– that nobody’s ever heard of”?

-Cherisse Yanit-Nadal


Showing Tonight: Judo’s Original Riot Girl

The Film: Mrs. Judo: Be Strong, Be Gentle, Be Beautiful
Screening Time: 7:00 pm
Venue: Freer & Slacker Gallery of Art
Run Time: 66 minutes

Every year, thousands of women come to Washington to effect change: by working on Capitol Hill or by marching on Washington. This year 99 year-old change agent Keiko Fukada joins them via documentary. “Mrs. Judo: Be Strong, Be Gentle, Be Beautiful” tells her inspirational story:

Keiko Fukada threw thousands of years of tradition out the window when she chose the sport of judo as her life path. Follow her lifelong journey which took her through four continents, nine decades, adversity, and triumph on her way to becoming the highest ranking woman in judo.

Both touching documentary and compelling sports movie, “Mrs. Judo” is a great way to start off your weekend.

-Cherisse Yanit-Nadal


My Film Habit Checks Out the APA Film Festival

Film blogger Allison Lyzenga has been covering the D.C. APA Film Festival for several years. What did she think of the Opening Night film Mr. Cao Goes To Washington?

By Allison Lyzenga

My Film Habit

I had the pleasure of attending the opening night festivities and of the 13th Annual DC Asian Pacific American Film Festival. And, the first night’s feature film was an absolute delight. This documentary tells the story of Joseph Cao, the first Vietnamese-American elected to Congress. And, even more remarkably, he achieved this as a Republican candidate from New Orleans—a difficult feat in a predominantly Democratic and African American district.

Click here to read the rest of Allison’s review.


Opening Night: L.A.’s Little Tokyo Comes To DC

The Film: “Traces No. 2: Union”
The City: Los Angeles
The Neighborhood: Little Tokyo

As a native Los Angeleno, I was totally geeked to see this film on tonight’s lineup. This film traces the history of the stately structure at 120 Judge John Aiso Street. Though it now provides a home for East West Players, Visual Communications, and Tuesday Night Cafe, this building stood through some pivotal moments of Los Angeles history and, indeed, Asian Pacific American History.

-Cherisse Yanit-Nadal


Opening Night: Mr. Cao Goes To Washington

See what happens as newcomer Joseph Cao, the honorable gentleman from New Orleans, embarks on his journey as a rookie congressman.

Watch as the first Vietnamese American elected to Congress becomes the only Republican to vote for President Obama’s Health Care Reform Bill. Keep watching as his idealistic desire for change clashes with the realities of racial politics in The South and the partisan power struggles play out around him during his first term.

Will Mr. Cao’s idealism survive through his first term?

-Cherisse Yanit-Nadal


DC APA Film Festival 2012: It Starts Tonight

In less that 45 minutes, we will be kicking off this year’s DC Asian Pacific American Film Festival. We’ve been going strong for 13 years, and we’re kicking off our teens at The Landmark E Street Cinema.

If you already purchased your tickets, make sure to get there early. Remember that this is a film festival and that demand is high: as of 15 minutes prior to showing, we cannot guarantee seating– even for ticket holders.

So, if you’re sitting here reading this and you’re set on seeing Mr. Cao Goes To Washington, hurry up and get to the theatre. We’re waiting for you!

-Cherisse Yanit-Nadal

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