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11 Beautiful and Creative SXSW Film Posters

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Facebook.com/GrowUpTonyPhillips

The 2013 SXSW Film Festival is showing 133 features and 109 shorts; some of those films are displaying one-sheet posters across town and at a gallery in the Austin Convention Center. Here are 11 SXSW film posters that creatively and beautifully capture the essence of their films—and would look great on anyone’s wall.

1. Old Man


Category: Animated Shorts
Synopsis: For more than 20 years Charles Manson has refused to communicate directly with the outside world. Until now. These are the actual never-before-heard phone conversations between Canadian bestselling author Marlin Marynick and Charles Manson.

2. Improvement Club


Category: Narrative Feature
Synopsis: A hybrid narrative film with doses of mockumentary, musical comedy and dance film, "Improvement Club" traces a rag-tag Seattle performance group’s attempt to expose the American Revolution’s fatal flaws. When the ensemble loses their shot at a New York premiere, their desperate wish for an audience takes them into the backwoods of the Pacific Northwest on what becomes a surreal pursuit of trust, togetherness and the true motivation behind their work. Loosely based on the making of director Dayna Hanson’s real-life performance, "Gloria’s Cause."

3. Grow Up, Tony Phillips


Category: Narrative Spotlight
Synopsis: Who doesn't love Halloween? All of Tony Phillips' (Tony Vespe) high school friends, apparently. It's senior year and they've now decided that they’re too cool for Halloween. When his older cousin (AJ Bowen) returns home right before the holiday, Tony starts to wonder if he really is the dork everyone thinks he is, or if he’s just ahead of the curve.

4. William and the Windmill


Category: Documentary Feature
Synopsis: Young Malawian William Kamkwamba teaches himself to build a power-generating windmill from junk parts, successfully rescuing his family from poverty and famine. He becomes an energy icon for the developing world and meets American entrepreneur and mentor Tom Reilly, who helps him imagine a new future. Fame, opportunity, stress and isolation follow his invention, and his life is transformed. As William struggles with the potential of his promising future, he privately yearns to distance himself from his windmill, that which made him famous. This is a story about a complex young man straddling two cultures, carrying the burdens of his past achievements while boldly pursuing a bright future.

5. The Gold Sparrow


Category: Animated Shorts
Synopsis: Set in a crumbling black-and-white futuristic metropolis, void of creativity and color, the city is traversed by The Gold Sparrow and her nefarious side kick, The Ring Leader. Together they scour the gray-scale streets, stealing the color from anyone daring enough to bring art back into their bleak world. Our heroes, The Strongman, The Fool, and The Monk, perform in the streets as they are hunted. The two sides clash through intense chase scenes and battles for the souls of our artists. Two-dimensional animation rotoscoped over live action creates a living graphic novel, a breathtaking and unique action-packed short film.

6. Again


Category: Texas High School Shorts
Synopsis: A woman sings to her child as her village is attacked.

7. Sci-Fly


Category: Animated Shorts
Synopsis: A journey through time & space, and the fight for existence. A dark premise contrasted with the divine imaginary creates a hypnotic ride of tone and emotion. Only "in-camera effects" were used to capture "Sci-Fly". The wonders of our own world were filmed in order to create another. I've always been a big believer in practical effects. Capturing visual effects "in camera" is starting to become an afterthought. "Sci-Fly's" main goal was to create a journey solely on experimenting with new techniques that we had never done before. Those new methods would shift the storytelling arch. "Sci-Fly" would evolve organically, just like the effects created.

8. Maidentrip

Category: Documentary Feature
Synopsis: Fourteen-year-old Laura Dekker sets out—camera in hand—on a two-year voyage in pursuit of her dream to be the youngest person ever to sail around the world alone. In the wake of a year-long battle with Dutch authorities that sparked a global storm of media scrutiny, Laura now finds herself far from land, family and unwanted attention, exploring the world in search of freedom, adventure, and distant dreams of her early youth at sea. Jillian Schlesinger’s debut feature amplifies Laura’s brave, defiant voice through a mix of Laura's own video and voice recordings at sea and intimate vérité footage from locations including the Galapagos Islands, French Polynesia, Australia, and South Africa.

9. Everyone's Going to Die


Category: Narrative Feature
Synopsis: Two lost souls. One last chance. Melanie's life in a seaside town is going nowhere until she meets Ray, back in town with a shady job to do. A moment's escape becomes a chance to save themselves, and each other. "Everyone's Going To Die" is a modern British story about coming home, getting by and the redemptive power of feeling you're not alone. A story where porn hotlines rub shoulders with sexy beavers on rollerskates; where the past is laid to rest, two lives are changed and nobody, finally, is going to die.

10. The Blue Umbrella


Category: Animated Short
Synopsis: It is just another evening commute until the rain starts to fall, and the city comes alive to the sound of dripping rain pipes, whistling awnings and gurgling gutters. And in the midst, two umbrellas—one blue, one not—fall eternally in love.

11. Lunarcy!


Category: Documentary Feature
Synopsis: With wry humor and affection, Simon Ennis’ "Lunarcy!" follows a disparate group of dreamers and schemers who share one thing in common: they’ve all devoted their lives to the Moon. From the former ventriloquist who’s made millions selling Moon lots to the young man who’s resolved to depart for Luna (permanently), "Lunarcy!" is a touching and comic portrait of passion, creativity and quixotic dreams.

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Fox Photos, Stringer, Getty Images
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Art
Winston Churchill’s Final Painting Is Going to Auction for the First Time
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Fox Photos, Stringer, Getty Images

While serving as an influential statesman and writing Nobel Prize-winning histories, Winston Churchill also found time to paint. Now, The Telegraph reports that the final painting the former British prime minister ever committed to canvas is heading to the auction block.

The piece, titled The Goldfish Pool at Chartwell, depicts the pond at Churchill’s home in Kent, England, which has been characterized as his “most special place in the world.” A few years after the painting was finished, he passed away in 1965 and it fell into the possession of his former bodyguard, Sergeant Edmund Murray. Murray worked for Churchill for the 15 years leading up to the prime minister's death and often assisted with his painting by setting up his easel and brushes. After decades in the Murray family, Churchill’s final painting will be offered to the public for the first time at Sotheby’s Modern & Post-War British Art sale next month.

Winston Churchill's final painting.
Sotheby's

Churchill took up painting in the 1920s and produced an estimated 544 artworks in his lifetime. He never sold any of his art, but The Goldfish Pool at Chartwell shows that the hobby was an essential part of his life right up until his last years.

When the never-before-exhibited piece goes up for sale on November 21, it’s expected to attract bids up to $105,500. It won’t mark the first time an original Winston Churchill painting has made waves at auction: In a 2014, a 1932 depiction of his same beloved goldfish pond sold for over $2.3 million.

[h/t The Telegraph]

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Ape Meets Girl
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Pop Culture
Epic Gremlins Poster Contains More Than 80 References to Classic Movies
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Ape Meets Girl

It’s easy to see why Gremlins (1984) appeals to movie nerds. Executive produced by Steven Spielberg and written by Chris Columbus, the film has horror, humor, and awesome 1980s special effects that strike a balance between campy and creepy. Perhaps it’s the movie’s status as a pop culture treasure that inspired artist Kevin Wilson to make it the center of his epic hidden-image puzzle of movie references.

According to io9, Wilson, who works under the pseudonym Ape Meets Girl, has hidden 84 nods to different movies in this Gremlins poster. The scene is taken from the movie’s opening, when Randall enters a shop in Chinatown looking for a gift for his son and leaves with a mysterious creature. Like in the film, Mr. Wing’s shop in the poster is filled with mysterious artifacts, but look closely and you’ll find some objects that look familiar. Tucked onto the bottom shelf is a Chucky doll from Child’s Play (1988); above Randall’s head is a plank of wood from the Orca ship made famous by Jaws (1975); behind Mr. Wing’s counter, which is draped with a rug from The Shining’s (1980) Overlook Hotel, is the painting of Vigo the Carpathian from Ghostbusters II (1989). The poster was released by the Hero Complex Gallery at New York Comic Con earlier this month.

“Early on, myself and HCG had talked about having a few '80s Easter Eggs, but as we started making a list it got longer and longer,” Wilson told Mental Floss. “It soon expanded from '80s to any prop or McGuffin that would fit the curio shop setting. I had to stop somewhere so I stopped at 84, the year Gremlins was released. Since then I’ve thought of dozens more I wish I’d included.”

The ambitious artwork has already sold out, but fortunately cinema buffs can take as much time as they like scouring the poster from their computers. Once you think you’ve found all the references you can possibly find, you can check out Wilson’s key below to see what you missed (and yes, he already knows No. 1 should be Clash of the Titans [1981], not Jason and the Argonauts [1963]). For more pop culture-inspired art, follow Ape Meets Girl on Facebook and Instagram.

Key for hidden image puzzle.
Ape Meets Girl

[h/t io9]

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