As summer starts to wind down, we trade those rompers and tanks in for our Uggs and sweaters, we put up the ice chest and look for someone to snuggle and watch a movie with, that’s why every Austinite looks forward to the Austin Film Festival. 

The AFF is an interactive way to say hello to fall, hello to exciting new filmmakers and writers on the circuit today, and watch unique cinema. It’s a chance to rub elbows with the swells and talk about what I love most; entertainment. Here is my top 5 list of movies you can’t miss! 

The Night Is Young



Directed | Dave Hill and Matt Jones

Written by and starring Dave Hill and Matt Jones

Over one night, two guys meet 2 girls and explore what it’s like to really have a drink in L.A.

I’m mostly excited to see this because of Matt Jones (Breaking Bad, Cooties, Broad City), to see what comedic prowess he brings to this performance, but it will be interesting to see a new movie from up and coming writer/director Dave Hill, a virtual unknown, but the buzz surrounding him is undeniable.




Director|  Todd Haynes  

Starring | Cate Blanchett, Rooney Mara, Kyle Chandler

Based on the novel The Price of Salt, set in 1952, this film tells the story of a young female clerk and her relationship with an older, married woman.

I do so love a period piece, especially set in New York, but I’m interested in Carol due to the director, Todd Haynes (Mildred Pierce). Mr. Haynes has an eye for the surreal and I’m sure that this movie will not disappoint.


Directors | Vladimir de Fontenay and Nina Ljeti

Starring |  Sam Dillon, James Franco

Ivan is a young man living in Palo Alto, California. Uninterested in his slacker friends, frustrated by his love for a girl who doesn’t know he exists, and a dysfunctional family life, he is struggling to find his place in the world.

Of course James Franco is a big pull for the world premiere of this film, but these directors are stepping up their game! Known for their short films, Nina Ljeti and Vladimir de Fontenay have come together to make their feature film debut.



Director | Jason Reitman

Starring | Nyasha Hatendi, Frances Conroy

A series that follows a dysfunctional family with a bachelor brother and his newly divorced sister. Moving in together, they coach each other through the tough world of dating and raise a teenager.

This series was picked up by Hulu and although it’s not a movie, how could your interest not perk up at the mention of Jason Reitman (Juno, Up in the Air)? This is completely out of the norm for the Oscar winning director and it has my attention fully!

YouthAustin Film Festival    

Director | Paolo Sorrentino

Starring | Michael Caine | Harvey Keitel | Rachel Weisz | Paul Dano

A retired orchestra conductor goes on holiday with his daughter and film director best friend in the Alps, when he receives an invitation from Queen Elizabeth II to perform for Prince Phillip’s birthday.

Last, but certainly the most appealing, a darling of the film fest circuit, “Youth” boasts an all star cast and a compelling storyline. It also stars Paul Dano (There Will Be Blood, Love & Mercy), an actor who has done no wrong since coming onto the scene and I look forward to seeing him display his talent alongside two of the greatest talents of all time.

These gems, alongside the others playing at the festival, are sure to be new favorites in anyone’s collection, but they have aroused my interest and I’m sure to leave the theatre captivated and entertained. Don’t miss it! Get your badge today!

About The Author

Angel Johnston
Editorial Contributor

Angel is the Editor of 'Is It Entertainment' film review and a contributing writer for Austin Food Magazine. She lives at home with her 2 snarky cats.

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