Laguna Film Society Gets Local

For years, the Laguna Beach Film Society (LBFS) has presented foreign films and American independent features and documentaries to its members and non-members who attend screenings at South Coast Cinema or the Festival of Arts grounds. Keiko Beatie, formerly of the Newport Beach Film Festival (NBFF) and now with Cinema Paradiso, has helped curate these cultural events in recent years, and they have really brought the world to the tiny village community.

But for the next LBFS event, the attention turns to home-grown filmmaking. Screening first will be John Keitel's Saving the Boom, a short documentary about the unsuccessful effort to save what for years had been the largest gay nightspot in Orange County, the Boom Boom Room. (The film got a thumbs up here shortly before it premiered at April's NBFF.)

Saving the Boom is followed by Napoleon's Funeral, which stars Laguna Beach resident Elaine Barnard. Writer-director Olimpia Quintanilla's short drama follows a woman whose dream of her death sparks her to get her life in order. Quintanilla is an up-and-comer whose documentary The Creator Alebrije and her short fictional piece Mammoth received awards in Mexico before the Fulbright scholar received a National Endowment for the Arts grant that culminated in Napoleon's Funeral, her American Film Institute thesis project.

Rounding out the event is local director Jeff Coffman talking about his 50 years as a filmmaker.

The screenings begin at 7 p.m. at South Coast Cinema, 162 South Coast Hwy., and the cost at the door is $15. But for just $5 more, you can watch the films, hear Coffman and nosh on appetizers, slurp wine and swap stories with filmies at a 6 p.m. reception around the corner in the community room of the Wells Fargo Bank, 260 Ocean Ave. Of course, if you already belong to LBFS, all of this is free with your membership.


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