One of the most important tips I got before coming to Cannes this year was from James Rocchi, who told me to buy my membership to the American Pavilion early. I had no idea what that even meant, but I did what he said, and so far, it's been a life-saver. Turns out, there's an entire village of pavilions set up behind the Grand Palais, the headquarters for the festival, and each country has one. The membership I bought allows me to use the wi-fi and crash at the AmPav between films, and it's really the only way I'm able to post stories in a timely manner while I'm here.
Like with many festivals, volunteers appear to be a huge part of keeping things working here, and the AmPav uses young students who seem to work for vouchers that get them into marketplace and festival screenings. Yesterday, while I was working on a story, a volunteer in his early 20s ran into the AmPav and grabbed two of the other guys by the shoulders. "Ohmygod! You have to come with me right now!" The volunteer coordinator said they were both working and asked why he wanted them to leave with him. "Because I got tickets to 'Attack The Block' and it's about to start!" She looked at all three of them, and I think she could sense the impending mutiny because she just shrugged and told them they could make their hours up later. They bolted before she even finished her sentence, and she turned to another volunteer, confused.
"What the hell is 'Attack the Block'?"
I have a feeling that's not a question people will be asking for much longer. The film just opened in the UK, and I'm curious about the reaction to it there. I know that every screening we've helped promote for it in the US has been met with huge enthusiasm, and I've gotten a ton of mail from people upset that they couldn't attend those first two screenings or that they weren't at SXSW to see it there.
Well, you're in luck. Screen Gems has heard your requests, and they are doing something about it. Want to participate in the 25 on 25 - "Attack The Block" Fan Appreciation Screenings? That's right… 25 cities… 25 screenings… all on the 25th of this month. One night only.
Here's a list of all the cities where this will be taking place:
1. New York
5. San Francisco
15. Kansas City
17. San Diego
23. St. Louis
And how can you attend? Easy.
CLICK THIS LINK TO RSVP. Act fast, since seating will be limited.
That's so cool. I have talked with people who are worried that various outlets or critics are overhyping the film, and I want to specifically respond to that idea by saying "nonsense." This is the reason I first started writing about film online. When you see a small film that really works and you know it'll never have even 1/100th of the ad budget of a movie like "PIrates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides," then the only way to balance things out is to get vocal. I do not think "Attack The Block" redefines modern cinema as we know it, and I don't think it has to. It is a smart, funny, exciting monster movie with a great young cast and a crackerjack visual style. It is a calling card for Joe Cornish, and an announcement that he's a really smart genre filmmaker who we should look out for in the future.
I want you guys to respond and get tickets for these screenings, and when you do, please… write to me. Let me know what you think. This is a word of mouth film, and I think it'll just continue to build as more and more people see it. Be part of that. Allow it. Trust. Believe.
And if you need any extra incentive, here's my original review from the SXSW screening.
Do me proud, folks. Make a trip to Ron's Weed Room. Check out the most entertaining monster movie in recent memory. And then let me know what you think.