PHOENIX — What do Cannes, New York, Park City, and Phoenix have in common. They all play host to film festivals you want to have on your radar. The Phoenix Film Festival kicks off Thursday, April 3rd featuring a bevy of films ranging from period dramas to romantic comedies. I’m looking forward to checking out a few films at the festival and have started strategizing my mission from what I’ll watch to what I’ll wear. Here are my picks for films to watch and what to wear.
Belle (pictured above), a period drama set in England and inspired by the true story of Dido Elizabeth Belle (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), the mixed race daughter of Admiral Sir John Lindsay (Matthew Goode). During a tumultuous era when the ideology surrounding slavery is in question, Belle is raised by her wealthy great-uncle Lord Mansfield (Tom Wilkinson) and his wife (Emily Watson) in a life of privilege, yet she is still denied the opportunity to partake in the traditions of noble social standing. Her cousin Elizabeth (Sarah Gadon), however, is living life to its fullest including seeking a suitor for marriage. Meanwhile, Belle is relegated to being a wall flower, wondering if love will come her way. But Belle meets a man who could possible change her life and the status quo. There have been myriad slavery-inspired films lately, but this film offers a fresh perspective from a different country and view point.
What to Wear: The weather in the Valley will be nice and sunny, but you’ll want to keep your lips hydrated and protected with SPF 15. Try the Fresh Tinted Lip Treatment in Passion, $22.50.
Obvious Child is a about aspiring 20-something comedian Donna Stern (Jenny Slate), who uses her life as inspiration for her on-stage fodder. She jokes about everything from intimate topics to those a bit more risqué – perhaps this is what Carrie Bradshaw would have been like as a comedian. But when Donna loses her job, boyfriend, and learns she’s pregnant right before Valentine’s Day, she starts to see things in a whole new light and is challenged with tackling money issues, single parenthood, and a new man in her life.
What to Wear: It’s always best to dress comfortable when hopping from theater to theater during a film fest. Sport a pair of relaxed jeans in a dark wash for a more dressed up look such as the AE Favorite Boyfriend Jean in Clean Dark, $39.95.
45RPM tells the story of painter Charlie Clark (Liza Burns) who gets a gig creating new art work, but she has one problem. Charlie can only paint one thing – a claw-foot tub in a leaky shack – an image that has haunted her since childhood. The only link she has to this mysterious painting obsession is the memory of listening to her father’s music on a 45 record. In an effort to break out of an artistic rut, she travels to Memphis on a lead to find the 45 record from her memories. With an old photo, the memory of a song, and a road-trip with Louie (Jason Thompson), a record collector – Charlie just might find more than the record.
What to Wear: Graphic tees are really hot right now, just like the weather in Phoenix. But a breezy burnout tee with a cool design is a chic way to catch a flick. Splurge on a vintage tee like the 1970’s The Doors ‘La Woman’ Concert T-shirt, $500.
The Trouble With the Truth
The Trouble With the Truth is about struggling musician Robert (John Shea), who rethinks his relationship with his ex-wife Emily (Lea Thompson) after his daughter announces her engagement. Robert attempts to warn his daughter about getting married, based on his failed marriage. But he soon has to re-evaluate his feelings. When he is reunited with Emily and the bad and good of their marriage is dredged up, they both discover there’s more to their relationship.
What to Wear: Sources tell me that actress Lea Thompson will be on the scene after the movie screening on April 5th. You just might want to don a sleek pair of shades for the occasion – after all, it’s the Hollywood thing to do and it doesn’t matter if it’s day or night. Go for a sleek pair of shades with a colored lens – maybe in a hue reminiscent of the Phoenix sky – like the Ray-Ban Large Metal Blue Lens Aviator, $160.
Gabrielle is about a young woman (Gabrielle Marion-Rivard) with an exceptional talent for music and infectious joy for life. But she also has Williams Syndrome, a rare disorder that impairs the growth and development of the brain and central nervous system. Gabrielle meets a guy named Martin (Alexandre Landry) at a recreation center and they are instantly drawn together and become inseparable, but because of their differences, their families are leery about the relationship. Gabrielle is on a quest to gain her independence from her family while meeting the challenges of her physical limitations and the prejudices of others, and love might just be the cure she needs.
What to Wear: Statement-making jewelry is a great way to accent any ensemble and add that finishing touch. Don a pair of music-inspired earrings such as these Mabelle 14K White Gold Diamond-Cut Music Symbol Beamed Note Stud Earrings, $102.
To buy tickets to the Phoenix Film Festival, go HERE.
Image sources: DJ Films, Rooks Nest Entertainment, Ozark Foothills Film Festival, 1428 Films, micro_scope