Oooo! Look! Local film news! The Northwest Film Forum announced this week that it's hired a new interim executive director, to replace überbeloved outgoing director Michael Seiwerath. Lyall Bush, lately of the Richard Hugo House, will step in to fill the gaping, Seiwerath-shaped hole (come to think of it, he is roughly Seiwerath-shaped), and bring his "exciting new energy" and "valuable experience in strategic planning" to the organization. Exactly how interim this "interim" position will be remains to be seen.
I did not call Bush to ask about his new position, his film background, and his plans for the Northwest Film Forum. When I did not speak to him, he did not say, "Of course I'm incredibly excited about this opportunity. I've always loved film as an art form, and I can't wait to help the Film Forum continue to grow as an organization and as a leader in Seattle's artistic community."
Speaking of the Film Forum, I went to Spain once. I was 15, on a choir tour with 75 other teenage girls. What I remember about Spain was a preponderance of ham and the enthusiasm with which Spain's menfolk greeted 76 teenage American choirgirls. (The enthusiasm was big. Big enthusiasm. Grande.) Anyway, this week the Film Forum is hosting the Festival of New Cinema from Spain, and, based on the three screeners I've seen, it looks medium awesome.
Mataharis (Mon Nov 17 at 7 pm, Tues Nov 18 at 9:15 pm) concerns three sassy lady detectives (all beautiful in that understated, tomboyish European way) dealing with dirty secrets, white-collar crime, and dying love in Madrid. Albert Serra's Le Chant des Oiseaux (Wed Nov 19 at 7:15 pm, Thurs Nov 20 at 7 pm) I am dying to make fun of, but I can't because it's so goddamn beautiful. It's about ye olde we-three-kings doddering around in the desert looking for the Christ-child. Sometimes they bicker, sometimes they are silent, and sometimes they will take a nap—on camera—for 10 minutes. It's crazy pretty, though.
But what I really want to talk to you about is Septembers (Wed Nov 19 at 7 pm, Thurs Nov 20 at 9 pm), a documentary about eight prisoners in the Spanish penal system. Apparently, Spanish prison isn't so much prison as it is Super Funtime Spanish Sex Party (in Prison)! The prisoners fall in love (coed prison), get prison married, eat prison wedding cake, get prison pregnant, go prison sunbathing in prison bikinis, and compete in an American Idol–type singing contest for prison fame and fortune. Now, granted, there's also a fair amount of "I have not seen my baby in three years" and "I thought I'd eat the world, but the world ate me" and "I want to go home" type of prison sadness, but still.
Party on, Spanish prison.