Thunder Soul

Idiots and Angels

While blockbusters battle it out on the big screen, some of the best of what to watch is at home, streaming directly to your TV. In the past couple of weeks, Netflix has added a plethora of stellar titles to its instant library including a rock n’ roll redemption documentary, a dark and hilarious animated feature and an overlooked Friedkin title.

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Thunder Soul is the movie Neil called, “a sweet, heartbreaking, truly unique emotional journey,” when he saw it during SXSW last year. It’s a documentary focused on the reunion of one of the best funk stage bands of the 1970s and the man who taught them how to perform. From the trailer, there’s a real-life element of Mr. Holland’s Opus going on as these men and women pay tribute to their band director, Conrad Johnson, and the life lessons he shared with them. Expect the tears to flow as openly as the syncopation. The music is bound to be out of this world, and it seems to have the emotional gut punch to satisfy those looking for a compelling story as well, so check out the trailer for yourself:

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One of my favorite non-starters for articles is the very bland “as you may know.” There’s no doubt in my mind that you’ve seen me use it in the past (I’m doing it again right now). So when I thought about how to begin this year’s top ten article, I wanted to begin by saying “as you may know, one of my great honors around here is to deliver my list of the ten best films of the year.” But you may not know how much of an honor that really is. In fact, it’s difficult for me to put into words how honored I feel to have anyone read this at all, let alone the scores of readers we see on a daily basis here at Film School Rejects. It’s safe to say that I speak for everyone here when I say that I am deeply honored by the opportunity just to write about film. You, the reader, offer that to us every day with your patronage. So my hope is that I can do you proud, dear reader, as I present my list of the ten best films of 2010. This year saw a great deal of personal turmoil for me, meaning some movie-watching blind spots. But some late-year scrambling has pushed my total films seen number well north of 200. And of those 200 or so eligible films, whittling it down to ten wasn’t quite as difficult as it’s been in recent years. Does that mean that […]

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The top nominations for this year’s Indie Spirit Awards are no surprise. Winter’s Bone continues its march through the woods to find its father and an Oscar with 7 nominations (which is almost all it was even eligible for). In a close second, The Kids Are All Right finds itself with 5 nominations. If you’re a fan of female directors, this year is celebrating a number of them in the top spots, but it’s also incredibly important to point out that Samuel L. Jackson and Bill Murray are finally up for the same award. The Indepdenent Spirit Awards make a good primer for the films that might make their way into the Academy Award nominee pool. In recent tradition, the winner of the Best Feature prize goes on to be an Oscar contender (and occasional winner). Examples of that include Precious, The Wrestler, Juno, and Brokeback Mountain. The full list of nominees continues below:

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SXSW Film 2010

As is the case every year at this time, we need to wrap things up. Much to our dismay, SXSW cannot go on forever. And while reviews will continue to post in the next week as we get caught up on screeners and anything we haven’t written up from the actual fest, we’re confident that we can present you with our picks for the 15 Best Films of SXSW 2010.

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SXSW Film 2010

SXSW 2010 just won’t end. Sure, the final films screened Saturday night and the annual softball tournament took place yesterday, but work is still being done. Here at Reject HQ, we’re still watching screeners trying to find little gems that we might have missed during the week. Over at the HQ of the festival, they are still tallying up awards ballots. Today they announced the final round of Audience Awards for the 2010 edition of South by Southwest.

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Thunder Soul

In the making of a truly special documentary, you have to be both lucky and good. First, the story has to be there. That’s often the luck. Then, you have to know what to do with said story. That’s where being good comes in hand. In the case of Mark Landsman and his powerful documentary Thunder Soul, all of these pieces fit together perfectly.

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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