- Film Festival
PFS filmadelphiaCLASSICS series on location, continued last week with a screening of the 2009 Oscar nominated film, The Wrestler.
The Film was shown at Asylum Arena (South Philly) because the wrestling scenes in the movie were actually shot there! I knew director, Darren Aronofsky had Philly connections with his film Black Swan, as the PA Ballet is all over that film, but this was news to me that Mickey Rourke had been here filming in 2008.
Prior to the screening, the audience was surprised by a visit from wrestlers, Claudio Castagnoli and his partner Tursas
Claudio only had a small part in the movie, but was on set for all the action scenes and he assured us that Rourke did more than 95% of his owns stunts. Castagnoli said Rourke trained for 4 months and showed a tremendous amount of dedication and effort for the sport.
This was my second time seeing The Wrestler, I do remember feeling it was a very well done flick at the time, but I was struck anew by this character study of a washed up, has been, who's still very much able to live in the moment. Not that Rourke's character is happy-go-lucky or content; but he's accepting; neither ruled by past glory nor putting a gloss on his current status.
I'd forgotten how much aging plays a part in the movie - Rourke's hearing aide and reading glasses and Marisa Tomei's character finding it just a little harder to entice the men at the club, even though she's a sexy 40.
I spoke with Jason (pic rt) who came to see the movie as a wrestling fan. His uncle was a WWF Wrester, going by the names- Salvator Sincere and Tom Brave. He said the movie reminds him of his uncle who still travels the Legends of Wrestler circuits doing exhibition matches at smaller arenas.
Next to him is David, a rep with Allied film promoters and a genuine fan of this film.
I also spoke with PFS Member, John Heuer (pic lft), who is a huge Aronofsky fan, in fact, the reason he joined last October was to be able to go to PFF opening night which featured Aronofsky in attendance at the Philly premiere of Black Swan.
Heuer had some good insights into the comparison of the these two most recent Darren Aronofsky films and asked if we ever allowed guest posting from members. I said, we definitely allow and are looking for comments!
But actually, I can't make it to all the preview screenings PFS offers (still working on a post for The Trip) so if, as a member, you attend a sneak peak screening and want to submit a coherently written review, I'll accept them at - firstname.lastname@example.org
Last, but certainly not least, The Film Society welcomes a new staff member - Office Manager, Daryl Bergman. Daryl is a visual artist who specializes in printmaking with degrees in Fine Art from Tyler School of Art and Temple University. Prior to coming to PFS, she was the office manager for a design firm.
I asked Daryl what interested her in the job as Office Manager for The Film Society and she replied " It's important for me to work in the arts. I'm also looking forward to seeing lots of fantastic new films and helping to facilitate the festival so others can also see fantastic new films!"