You may know Santa Monica as a coastal getaway more than a lesson in artistic mediums of expression, but come December it will be a destination for both! This beach town is home to one of the most world-renowned international film festivals. Contrary to a Hollywood premiere, the SMFF is casually fresh, and inviting to those who want to catch some culture after catching a wave. Annually, it attracts cinematic-addicts from all corners of the globe, drawn to see the latest in independent filmmaking. Screening contemporary, innovative shorts, features, and documentary films the competition is thick with talented submissions. Often bringing with it a celebrity crowd, who come to leaf through who and what’s new on the scene. The SMFF is produced by local non-profit Malibu Film Foundation, which is at the forefront of discovering and producing entertainment based content, and whose 2016 film Who’s Driving Doug has made it to Netflix. The organization is now on the prowl for its next triumph.
Last year, films such as The Lake, The Love Effect, and ZAAR were the talk of the festival — setting standards high for 2017, the SMFF’s 12th year. This time around SMFFl is looking forward to hosting films that are already making heads turn in destination festivals — such as The Driver is Red by Randall Christopher which has also met its festival rounds with success, and has been called “absolutely engrossing” by Seth Combs of the San Diego CityBeat. Viewers can expect the submissions to be thick with commentary of the modern zeitgeist, as well as deep historical dialogues.
With the purchase of an all-access pass one may attend all film screenings, the Laemmle filmmaker lounge, panel discussions, filmmaker happy hour, award presentations, and the awards after-party where you can brush shoulders with up and coming masters of modern film. Once you have had your fill of visual arts, you can tweet your vote to @SMFF. Taking place at the Laemmle Monica Film Centre in downtown Santa Monica, the festival kicks off December 9th, inviting locals and visitors alike to partake in this celebration of independent film. Purchase your tickets at: https://www.smff.org/tickets