jess moss

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Ginger Snaps fans!!! I have in my possession a copy of Fangoria from 2000/2001 with a pretty great article on Ginger Snaps, with some rare photos and interesting tidbits about the making of the film. They make a few mistakes, like crediting Chris Redman as playing Ginger’s boyfriend, instead of Jesse Moss. Still a really cool article!

Started a visually beautiful film called Jess + Moss but I had to stop because Mubi is so slow that I’m now watching oscars red carpet stuff. :(

The physical media lover in me is screaming “Wouldn’t have happened with DVD.” Right now.

Documentary Review by Karim Khayal: The Overnighters/ Jesse Moss(2014)

Winning the 2014 Special Jury Award for documentaries at the Sundance Film Festival, The Overnighters is a riveting look at a man willing to follow his principles wherever they might make take him and at whatever cost to those around him, a man whose motives may not be nearly as clear-cut as might seem at first however. Directed by Jesse Moss, The Overnighters follows the exploits of Pastor Reinke, who has turned his church and home into a sort of make- shift refugee camp, giving shelter to desperate and broken men coming from all over the United States and hoping to profit from the North Dakota Oil Boom. Pastor Reinke is adamant about his duty in giving shelter to men who would otherwise have no other place to go, even if that means allowing a registered sex-offender to camp in his house when his wife and daughter are present. Of course this does not go easily by the neighbors and the local press, who are livid about the alleged danger to the community that those men pose. Despite being chased by a local reporter and hounded by questions at community gatherings, Reinke insists that it’s the right thing to. The film allows us an intimate glimpse into the lives of the men harbored by Reinkes church, some who seem desperately wanting to escape their past and build a new future for their families and others who clearly harbor violent tendencies, with one crazed sex-offender directly threatening the pastor after being forced out of the church.

The main attraction of the documentary is the personality and almost literary figure of Reinke himself, a man constantly at odds with his community, at one point comforting a disturbed man by telling him “that they are both alike” and then giving him a hug. Later the man disappears and Reinke goes looking for him in the local pubs and taverns. On a superficial level, Reinkes motives might seem Christian to a fault, adhering to a strict and rigid “love your neighbor” philosophy. It soon becomes clear however that there is more to the man than first meets the eye. Often his expressed love for the men he harbors and the welcoming smile he tries to give them appear quite forced and throughout the documentary it becomes clear that Reinke is not a man averse to the attention he is clearly receiving. In fact, as a viewer one begins to harbor the suspicion that Reinke enjoys playing his own drama in front of the camera, a sort of self-styled Steinbeckian figure of grace in a world gone mad. At other points in the film the director manages, unintentionally, to catch both quite dangerous and hilarious scenes, such as when Reinke is threatened by a mad woman telling him to get off her property or else be shot, who then proceeds to chase the unfazed pastor with a broom.

There is a deep underlying sadness to The Overnighters, a sadness captured in the beautiful images of desolation found in the landscape and the men’s faces, men who have arrived at a point in life where the last glimmer of hope is clutching for a straw, the only thing that will keep them afloat in the misery that is their lives. The underlying sadness is also inherent in the unknowability and the complexity of human motives, with Reinkes at one point confessing that “my motives are never pure”.  This is made abundantly clearly by a revelation at the end of the film that will have viewers gasping for air, a revelation that took even the director by surprise. It completely changes the way we look at Reinke, the way we understand his motives and the way we come to regard his particular behavior toward his long suffering family.  The Overnighters is indeed a sensational film, a real life drama capturing the intricacies, the desperation, the strength, the hope but also the self-deceit of the human heart.

Lowell Dean’s insanely fun WolfCop (review) hits Blu-ray and DVD on March 10th via RLJE/Image Entertainment, and right now we’ve got an exclusive clip for ya!

Written and directed by Lowell Dean, the film stars Leo Fafard, Amy Matysio, Aidan Devine, Jesse Moss, Sarah Lind, Jonathan Cherry, and Corrine Conley.

Synopsis:
Officer Lou Garou isn’t the best cop in small-town Woodhaven – in fact, he’s probably the worst. He mostly just looks to avoid anything that could possibly interfere with his goal of getting wasted. One evening during the night shift, Lou investigates a mysterious disturbance at the edge of town and wakes up with a pentagram carved in his chest, heightened senses, and body hair that’s growing at an alarming rate. To solve the mystery of his transformation, he’ll have to take on a case no normal cop would be able to solve, but this half-man, half-beast is not just a cop… he’s a WOLFCOP.



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The Overnighters, directed by Jesse Moss, movie #5 of 2015 for me (#4 was Art and Craft, another great documentary). I tend to consume a large amount of media, so it’s rare for a movie to have me thinking about it as much as this one has, a week after first seeing it. It follows a town in North Dakota, home to an oil boom, dealing with the influx of people coming from across the country (and the world), which means it raises questions about the two Americas, the America we say we are, and the America we really are. Are we a land of opportunity where any person can pull themselves up by their bootstraps as long as they work for it, but also a country where we hold people’s past against them when it comes to hiring? A country that is Christian and loving, but doesn’t want newcomers in its towns? A country where you can pull $100,000 a year doing manual labor in the same town where people are forced to sleep in cars while looking for jobs? And the Pastor the documentary focuses on his phenomenally interesting. Jay Reinke believes he is doing what is just and right, sometimes lying to church elders and goers (or lying through omission), in order to give these men and women a place to sleep, but would you let a convicted sex offender sleep in your home, where your teenaged daughters live? The most important aspect of the documentary is that it asked none of these questions outright. The viewer is left taking away these questions, none of which have any answers. One of the best documentaries I’ve seen in a long time. I recommend it. It’s no longer at the @nightlightakron, but it’s worth getting ahold of it if you can.