Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Festivals de Film

With the likes of YouTube, one can get an off beat film or indy entertainment at the click of the mouse.  However, there is something so fun about attending film festivals.  There is a sense of thrill in the air as many of these films have yet to be debuted and a friendly competitive spirit of who receives the most impressive applause.

Apparently, SF has a ton of unique film festivals including the largest International Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, City Shorts, Earthdance: Environmental Film Festival, Hi/Lo Film Festival... and many many more.

I have to admit, I am not a film festival hoppin' artsy bohemian.  But I did have the pleasure to go to Campus Moviefest's Western Regional Finale in SF.  Campus Moviefest is the largest student film festival in the world.  I attended because my brother and his incredibly talented friends won Best Picture and my brother won Best Actor at UCLA's Campus Moviefest.

Students had a week to produce a 5 minute film - films ranged from slap slick comedies to intense dramas.  There were so many awesome shorts.  The most exciting part of the festival was the award show, of course.  Especially when my brother and his group known as The Wait List won Best Picture of the entire Western region for their film, The Butterfly King.  The film has since been to Sundance Film Festival, scheduled for San Luis Obispo International Film Festival, and will compete in Campus Moviefest's International Finale in June.

They are a talented group to look out for -  Check out their other films at  The Wait List Website.  I hope to attend more film festivals in the future and report more winnings of up an coming filmmakers.

Friday, February 5, 2010

7x7 Packs A Punch

According to Wikipedia, there are over 100 neighborhoods in San Francisco.  This 7x7 city packs a punch!
I live in the Nob Hill neighborhood, so my area of expertise is North East part of the city.  Even though SF has good public transport, there is so much to do in such a concentrated area, that exploring other parts of the city is more of an adventure than an every day occurrence. Here are some of my fav neighborhoods :

  • Nob Hill - As I said, this is where I reside.  We've got adorable cable cars, eateries, delis, and funky shops.  Nob Hill is an eclectic neighborhood - a combination of old wealth, fancy hotels, homeless people, and dive bars.  The neighborhood boarders the Tenderloin which is a rough part of town, to say the least.  The "Loin" brings an influx of shady characters and a lot of eye raising occurrences.  I love this area because it's a combo of city charm and urban rif-raf. 
  • The Marina/ Cow Hollow - safe, pretty, yuppy, and charming are the words I would use to describe the Marina.  The area is flocking with 20 and 30 somethings in Lululemon workout pants, tight fitting zip-up, and designer handbags.  Often referred to as "campus", it is a place that is filled with young party animals.  It's also a common hang out for cougars and silver foxes looking for some young blood. 
  • North Beach - Awesome Italian restaurants and lots of strip clubs.  North Beach is dirty and charming at the same time.  There are some cute neighborhoods, but what comes to mind first is good food and naked ladies.
  • South of Market (SOMA) - SOMA is up and coming with sky scraper apartment buildings and swanky restaurants.  There is a diverse crowd - a mix of Financial District professionals, artsy folk, and urban duellers.  SOMA feels less like a neighborhood and more like a city, but has some enticing characteristics like easy access to shopping, unique museums, and close to all major public transport.
  • Presido - The Presido was an old US Military post, so it is very organized and uniform.  The residences in the Presido are atypical of a city - 4 bedroom, 2 story homes, yard, sidewalk, kids, dogs, etc.  These homes are surrounded by massive amounts of wilderness and trees making it a very beautiful spot.  Besides the trees and old military homes, there's not too much going on in this part of town.  I like to go here for a mid-day BBQ or a drive through the trees.
What is your favorite SF neighborhood?!  Please comment.