Last night was the closing night of the Los Angeles Film Festival, and it was wonderful. I got there in time to stand in the rush line for the screening of the film The Way, Way Back with Steve Caroll and Toni Collette. I chatted with friends while in line, and got to peak around at the Red Carpet but was soon rushed into the film. While waiting in the theatre for the movie to start, I met Nolan Gerard Funk, photo above, a successful working actor. He has been in the TV shows Awkward, Glee, the film The House at the End of the Street, many other films and TV shows, and was Conrad on Broadway in Bye, Bye Birdie. Couldn't have been nicer, he spoke to me for a few minutes and I discovered he is originally from Vancouver, Canada and now lives in LA. He's a very handsome, polite and focused young man and doubtless this has contributed to his success.
Now on to the film we saw. The Way, Way Back, directed and written by Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, is a perfect confection of a summer film. Light, funny, and well-acted, it was the perfect way to end an amazing film festival. The movie stars Steve Carell, who for once is an unsympathetic character (excellent as always); Toni Collette (beautiful and a gifted actress), Liam James, also terrific, and others. They all do a great job and lend this rather light piece a great deal of heavyweight acting chops. It is reminiscent of The Descendents, without quite the emotional punch of that film's dramatic arc. A very enjoyable movie, opening July 5th.
Below is a photo of the lovely Toni Collette on her way to the after party. I tried to get in, but alas, could not, so I walked over the Lawry's The Carvery at L.A. LIVE and had a delicious fresh turkey sandwich and mashed potatoes, yum! More film festival photos on my Flickr page here: Joy's Flickr
Congratulations to all the staff, board, volunteers, filmmakers and actors for an outstanding film festival. Until next year!