Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Reel World 

Wednesday, Jun 7 1995
Short Fuse
As a filmmaker and a critic, Warren Sonbert knew exactly how movies worked on people -- both emotionally and technically. And when a film wasn't proficient or adventurous enough, he didn't hesitate to walk out in the middle (or before the end of the first reel, in the case of V.I. Warshawski). Sonbert's own work earned plaudits around the world; he was honored with retrospectives, 10 years apart, at the prestigious Whitney and Museum of Modern Art in New York. From a broader perspective, his success also radiated glory on San Francisco's avant-garde filmmaking community. A few months ago, the Cinematheque announced a tribute to Sonbert on June 22 at Center for the Arts. Warren was supposed to attend, but he died May 31 at age 47 of complications from AIDS. We have the memory of his droll, feisty spirit and, of course, his films.

Some Kind of Hero
Congratulations and blessings are in order, as Pacific Film Archive director Edith Kramer receives the Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the French government on June 15 at the PFA .... Shine that national spotlight over here, please: Ellen Bruno's sublime Satya: A Prayer for the Enemy airs nationally on PBS's P.O.V. series, a week after Deborah Hoffmann's Complaints of a Dutiful Daughter jump-starts the season June 13.

The Long Goodbye
Hate to spring it on you like this but, nearly three full years after my first column appeared in these pages, this marks the end of the line. Reel World has been canceled, as my editors have decided that the Weekly should be devoting more space to movie reviews. I intended Reel World to be consistently fun and occasionally edifying (OK, vice versa); I hope, in your mind, I succeeded. But don't take this as a definitive goodbye; I'm still committed to covering the Bay Area's vibrant and iconoclastic film community. So keep bringing the Junior mints.

And now, roll credits: Thanks to the pair of dimly remembered editors who asked me to originate this column three summers ago (although it would have been nice if they'd been more enthusiastic about directing readers this way). An unambivalent salute to Bill Goggins, the meticulous yet respectful editor who finessed my clauses while preserving my intent. I'm also mighty appreciative of a few key sources who provided a consistent stream of scoops and gossip. (It would be nice to give credit where credit is due, but I still need them. They know who they are.) It's been a great ride, from Moritsugu to Mrs. Doubtfire, from the Castro's cozy balcony to Tosca's shiny booths, from Coppola's foibles to Crumb's triumph. We'll be in touch.

By Michael Fox

About The Author

Michael Fox


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment


  • Phish at the Bill Graham Auditorium
    Phish is in the midst of a block of sold out shows at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium (October 27-29). The Monday night concert featured a rare first set opener of “Walfredo” with the band members switching instruments for the song. The evening’s highlights included John Fishman and his iconic vacuum cleaner solo and favorites such as Chalk Dust Torture, Slave to the Traffic Light, Axilla, Rift, 2001 Space Odyssey, and Maze. The show also featured Phish’s debut of a, seemingly impromptu, version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” to with roaring approval of the, singing along, crowd. With Game 6 being tonight, partying Phish fans will join Giants fans in Civic Center Plaza where there will be a World Series viewing party on a large screen set up by the City. Photography by Jamie Soja.
  • The 4th Annual Masquerotica 2014 - NSFW
    The theme this year was Carnaval Mystique for the 4th Annual Masquerotica at The Factory. Attendees were entertained by strip dance, trapeze, and live music. Photographs by Calibree Photography.

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed