More in-depth film festival coverage than any other website!
Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 

Latest Features

Films I Neglected To Review: And You Thought Flying United Was Bad

Short Stuff: The 2017 Oscar-Nominated Documentary Shorts

Films I Neglected To Review: 'Another Head Hangs Lowly

Short Stuff: The 2017 Oscar-Nominated Live-Action Shorts

Short Stuff: The 2017 Oscar-Nominated Animated Shorts

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: THE OTHER SIDE OF PORCUPINE LAKE director Julian Papas

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: TRENCH 11 director Leo Scherman

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: Meet the team behind ORDINARY DAYS!

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: SANTA STOLE OUR DOG director Bryan Michael Stoller

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: HOLY ANGELS director Jay Cardinal Villeneuve

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: NEVER SAW IT COMING director Gail Harvey

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: THE BALLAD OF LEFTY BROWN director Jarod Moshe

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: JUGGERNAUT director Daniel Dimarco

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: BUDAPEST NOIR director Eva Gardos

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: SOMEONE ELSE'S WEDDING director Pat Kiely

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: VENUS director Eisha Marjara

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview - NEVER HERE director Camille Thoman

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: A SWINGERS WEEKEND director Jon E. Cohen

Whistler Film Festival 2017 Interview: THERE IS A HOUSE HERE director Alan Zweig

Whistler Film Festival: The Darkest Movie Moments on the Starriest Slopes

subscribe to this feed

Latest Reviews

Unsane by Peter Sobczynski

Tehran Taboo by Rob Gonsalves

Final Portrait by Rob Gonsalves

Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story by Jay Seaver

Before We Vanish by Jay Seaver

Dear Dictator by Peter Sobczynski

Tomb Raider (2018) by Peter Sobczynski

Darken by Jay Seaver

Early Man by Jay Seaver

Beyond Skyline by Jay Seaver

Agent Mr. Chan by Jay Seaver

Wrinkle in Time, A by Peter Sobczynski

Kill Order by Jay Seaver

Detective Chinatown 2 by Jay Seaver

Game Night by Jay Seaver

Operation Red Sea by Jay Seaver

Red Sparrow by Peter Sobczynski

Annihilation by Peter Sobczynski

They Remain by Rob Gonsalves

Roman J. Israel, Esq. by Rob Gonsalves

subscribe to this feed

Meet a Fantastic Fest DIE HARD: Barbara Kennedy

Barbara Kennedy - A Fantastic Fest
by Jason Whyte

Continuing our look into Fantastic Fest Die Hards, film fan Barbara Kennedy is an Austin native and one of the first people I ever met at the annual Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas.

“My dad was in the army, so we moved every couple of years throughout most of my life; I've lived in Colorado, Tennessee, Germany, and Texas. He retired when I was around 11, and decided Austin was the place to be. Initially, I hated the Texas heat, but the city was amazing, and I too grew to love it here with its thriving music scene, great attitude, and energy and decided to stay long term. I work as a business systems analyst for the city of Austin, and really do love my job (well, 95 percent of the time) as I work with great people. In addition to film, I love music, craft beer, college football, and trying new things.”

So what makes you a Fantastic Fest DIE HARD?

My first Fantastic Fest was in 2008 and the experience was incredible! I met amazing people while waiting for films, and I loved so many of the films I saw. I have attended other film festivals, and I usually like about 40 percent of the movies, love 30 percent, not so enthusiastic about 25 percent and hate about 5 percent of what I see. My first year at Fantastic Fest, I LOVED 95 percent of the films and liked more than 4 percent. In fact, there were only two out of the 24 films I saw that I didn't like or love. The people made it an even better experience. I did not encounter any "film snobs." Oh yes, I met tons of people who loved and knew films, but they were kind, approachable, and enthusiastic to discuss movies with those of us who didn't have the vast knowledge they did.

How do you explain Fantastic Fest to someone who is not familiar with the film festival?

I tell them Fantastic Fest has the best programming of any festival. I explain the ticket process and that you are guaranteed to get into a film during any time slot if you want, and that often times, not getting into the film you think you want to see is a good thing, as you end up seeing something better anyway. You really can't go wrong with the selection of films screened. I mention the awesome people and the insanity of the karaoke and closing night parties. I've convinced people to attend, and they all come back after the first time.

Every attendee experiences Fantastic Fest differently, so I'm curious as to what a day is like for you at the festival.

I focus mostly on movies, but I love my Fantastic Fest friends and try to spend time with them in between screenings and at the couple parties I attend. I generally see a minimum of 24 films, and attend about two parties.

Overall, what are you looking forward to the most at Fantastic Fest, 2011 edition?

I cannot wait for this year! I am excited to see what amazing films the programmers have selected. I'm especially looking forward to seeing some of the French filmmakers who will be attending because I have a passion for French horror. And I'm psyched for a reunion of sorts with those friends I only see annually.

Would you say that you have a particluar genre or filmmaker that you follow at the festival every year?

I don't really follow a particular filmmaker, but I tend to lean towards martial arts and horror films in general.

Do you have a particular favorite menu item at the festival’s key venue, the Alamo Drafthouse?

I enjoy the Alamo's Fish and Chips a lot, so I guess that's my favorite, although their salads are very tasty, too.

What has been your favorite non-film related event of past editions of the fest?

I think my favorite non-film event was the Cave Rave closing night party in 2008, followed closely by the Norwegian Boat Party and Ghost Town closing party in 2010.

Looking to the future, Is there anything you wish the festival would try out for the 2012 edition?

I would like to see Fantastic Fest run for two solid weeks, show movies from 9am to 2am, and have a different themed party every night from midnight to 2am. Insanity, I say, insanity! But that would be AWESOME!

What has been your favorite moment or experience at any previous FF that you have attended?

This is by far, the hardest question you are asking. To pick a single moment or experience that is the best at Fantastic Fest is like asking me to pick my favorite strand of hair. There are too many wondrous, incredible moments that complement each other so that to pick one wouldn't do justice to it or the experience as a whole.

What is the single, greatest movie that you have seen at any Fantastic Fest?

For me, I absolutely loved “The Good, The Bad, The Weird.” It was incredibly beautifully filmed, dynamic, colorful, and thoroughly enjoyable.

And finally, what is your all time favorite movie and why?

My favorite film changes frequently based on my mood, most recently viewed and so forth, so it's really hard to pick one. If I had to say, I guess it's a tie between “Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World” and “IP Man”. “Scott Pilgrim” is so fresh and fun. There are so many small things that make that movie amazing to me and I find it fascinating. “IP Man” is one of those rare action films that is more about the person and less about the action, but still manages to have tons of amazing action in it. It's a movie that grabs my heart, tells a powerful story, does both in a way that is exciting, and Donnie Yen is amazing.

This is a continuing series of Fantastic Fest Die Hard interviews for For more information on Fantastic Fest including films, schedule and other events, point your browser to You can also follow Barbara’s Fantastic Fest exploits on her Twitter at @barbara1112k.

Jason Whyte, -- Follow me on Twitter @jasonwhyte

link directly to this feature at
originally posted: 09/26/11 01:21:47
last updated: 09/26/11 01:22:38
[printer] printer-friendly format

Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About Australia's Largest Movie Review Database.
Privacy Policy | HBS Inc. | |   

All data and site design copyright 1997-2017, HBS Entertainment, Inc.
Search for
reviews features movie title writer/director/cast