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Farihah Zaman

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Top Five Films at BAMCinemaFest 2012

Posted: 06/22/2012 2:00 pm

Now in its fourth year, BAMcinemaFest kicked off last Wednesday with a screening of Mike Birbiglia's directorial debut, Sleepwalk with Me, which was hotly anticipated by the This American Life set, and a party in the lovely upper mezzanine that served street food like hot dogs and gyros, set to equal parts Robyn and Dirty Dancing soundtrack selections. The casual dance party in the dignified setting seemed surprisingly unforced, and very appropriate for the festival, which has found its voice with predominantly American indies culled from the recent festival circuit (largely Sundance and SXSW) and now rests comfortably between the New Directors/New Films showcase and established auteur-driven New York Film Festival in terms of scope and profile. That BAM seems to care more about bringing a focused curatorial vision to bear than vying for a jumbled mix of higher-profile titles and obscure premieres is very much in keeping with the organization's philosophy of building programming around its loyal Brooklyn audience.

Here are my top five picks; for more information and to purchase tickets visit BAM.org.

GAYBY (Jonathan Lisecki)
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Friday, 6/22, 9:15PM

Although the film is not, as Mike Birbiglia hilariously suggests in this promotional video (one of a series of site-specific filmmaker interviews done by the video arm of online journal Reverse Shot), about two gay babies in love, I urge you not to hold that against this charming, deceptively simple platonic/romantic comedy. In a story of a gay comic book owner and his straight gal pal figuring out how to have a child together (ideally the old fashioned way), Lisecki cast right out of the theater, choosing actors who haven’t quite made it in recorded media yet but absolutely should; along with the witty, script that puts other supposedly transgressive recent rom-com fare like Lola Versus to shame, the cast is the strongest draw.
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