Beverly Hills Film Festival 2018 – Final Film Reviews

The end is near!  The 18th Annual International Beverly Hills Film Festival 2018 recently turned off the projector light for this year, but we still have a few loose movie ends to tie up.  (Hey, there were a LOT of flicks this year!)  We’re checking out four final features to end our cool comprehensive coverage on a good note.  Stories of surviving a night of hell, the visual bravado of the guys behind the camera, friends who make friend do atrocious things and helping a girl grow up by using anger cover the subject of the four feature flicks dissected below.  Check out the reviews of Saviors, Keepers Of The Magic, Destination: Dewsbury and Dominika via our…Final Film Reviews!  

“Saviors” – Mixing the codependent undercover drama of Rush with the frenetic immediacy of Run Lola Run, Director Christopher Greenslate takes two elements that frankly don’t need to be meshed together and nevertheless makes them sing.  Telling his engrossing and believable tale of a white gal (impressive and utterly believable newbie Megan Johnson!) looking for her adoptive African-American mother within a strong white power group, Greenslate not only creates a chemistry ridden suspense ride, but ratchets up the tension by doing it in a single continuous take.  Biting off more than one can chew and still managing to swallow with ease, Greenslate and his brand of cinema are ones to watch.

“Keepers of the Magic” – This doc puts fine focus on visual savvy of movies all via the dissection of some of the best cinematographers in the business.  Plus it puts on-screen style front and center with tales of old school movie carts and iconic visual shots that take the breath away.  But the best is hearing from the masters themselves who spin yarns about everything from working with actors (while shooting The Paper DP John Seale took extra time to light a setup to Glenn Close could learn her lines!) to their thoughts on monitors and digital cameras in the new film age – movie magic indeed.

“Destination: Dewsbury” – Love when this UK import about four hapless high school buds now grown and heading to see a sick friend puts its comedy throttle in full foul movie mode.  Shit stained arms, a sick S&M hotel and even tales of past debauchery all add extra raunchy humor that is all but missing from today’s comedies.  And while there is a rather simple sappy story with a hint of schmaltz and predictability, it’s the base belly laughs that make this destination so delightfully despicable.

“Dominika” – Right from the get go, Dominika has tough story stairs to climb.  Meaning the harmless but strange tale of a single gent who finds himself saddled with a child who grows in huge spurts every time he gets angry has some serious identity issues.  Is this one a tale about being selfless to a toddler, or perhaps about the patience it takes to raise a teen, maybe even expressing romantic love for one so close?  No matter which of the above, since they are all within days of each other with the same person growing, all seem wholly out of place in a film already asking for suspension of disbelief.  An odd movie maven indeed, Dominika is a cinematic enigma.

Thanks to all the filmmakers via this year’s BHFF 2018 and to all the volunteers and staff that make the fest possible – till next year!


I'm a passionate and opinionated film critic/movie journalist with over 20 years of experience in writing about film - now exclusively for WhySoBlu.com. Previous sites include nine years at Starpulse.com where I created Forgotten Friday Flick back in 2011, before that as Senior Entertainment Editor for The213.net and 213 Magazine, as well as a staff writer for JoBlo.com. My other love is doing cool events for the regular guy with my company Flicks For Fans alongside my friend, partner and Joblo.com writer James "Jimmy O" Oster. Check us out at www.Facebook.com/FlicksForFans.

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