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"The Girl Who Invented Kissing", "Almost Paris", and "Brooklyn in July" Are Big Winners At 2017 Golden Door International Film Festival

originally published: 10/11/2017

"The Girl Who Invented Kissing", "Almost Paris", and "Brooklyn in July" Are Big Winners At 2017 Golden Door International Film Festival

(JERSEY CITY, NJ) -- The Golden Door International Film Festival (GDIFF) is known for star-studded galas and this year was no exception, with Red Carpet Events each night of the festival. Founded by Jersey City native Bill Sorvino, and named as the Best Film Festival in the state by NJ Stage Awards two years in a row, GDIFF brings the best of independent filmmaking to audiences, and also has a philanthropic mission to raise autism awareness through cinema. This year’s festival, held from October 5th through 8th, featured more than 175 movies at venues throughout Jersey City.

The Girl Who Invented Kissing, with the tagline "Every town needs a savior, but not every town can be saved" won four awards including Best Feature Film, Best Actor (Dash Mihok), Best Supporting Actor (Vincent Piazza), and Best Director (Tom Sierchio, a Bloomfield, NJ native.) Almost Paris directed by Dominic Cameron-Scorcese, took three awards, including Best Actress (Abigail Hawk), Best Supporting Actress (Susan Varon), and Best Screenplay (Wally Marzano-Lesnevich). Brooklyn in July won Best Feature, Best Director (Bob Celli) and Best Actor (Thaddeus Daniels) in the Short Film category.

Here is the full list of winning films :

LGBT - Easy, A 3 Minute Love Story

Music Video - Jersey Christmas

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Best International Short Film - Lonely Souls of Microbes

Women in Cinema - Flush the John

Films For Raising Awareness - Amazing Things Happen

Best Feature Film - The Girl Who Invented Kissing

Best Director of a Feature Film - Tom Sierchio -- The Girl Who Invented Kissing

Best Actor in a Feature Film - Dash Mihok -- The Girl Who Invented Kissing

Best Actress - Abigail Hawk -- Almost Paris

Best Supporting Actor - Vincent Piazza -- The Girl Who Invented Kissing

Best Supporting Actress in a Feature Film - Susan Varon -- Almost Paris

Best Editing in a Feature Film - Good Bones

Cinematography in a Feature Film - Bird

Screenplay of a Feature Film - Almost Paris

Best Short Film - Brooklyn In July

Director of a Short Film - Bob Celli -- Brooklyn In July

Actor in a Short Film - Thaddeus Daniels -- Brooklyn In July

Actress in a Short Film - Linda Hamilton -- Shoot Me Nicely

Best Concept in a Short Film - Shoot Me Nicely

NJ Filmmakers of Tomorrow - Give Love

Student Film - The Next Epoch Seed Library

Local Film - Based on True Events

Documentary - The Bullish Farmer

The name Golden Door Film Festival was derived from the poem by Emma Lazarus which adorns the base of the Statue of Liberty (in Jersey City, New Jersey waters!). The final line of that poem reads “I lift my lamp beside the golden door”.  Jersey City, New Jersey is that golden door and Ellis Island (also in Jersey City waters) served as the door to opportunity for several decades. Set with the backdrop of the beautiful New York City skyline, this four day film festival holds the opportunity for filmmakers, actors and crew to network with colleagues and share their work with the public in the heart of the NYC indie filmmaking landscape.

For more on the Golden Door International Film Festival visit

Rahway Presents Pop-Up Screening of "Best of Rahway Reel Shorts"
(RAHWAY, NJ) -- In 2019, the Rahway Arts and Business Partnership will continue to expand the Culture Crawl Concept to include the Culture Crawl Film Series, with the first pop-up screening, “Best of Rahway Reel Shorts,” scheduled for Saturday, January 19th from 8:00pm-10:30pm at Atelier Rosal (74 E. Cherry St.) in downtown Rahway.
State Theatre Presents Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back In Concert with NJSO
(NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ) -- State Theatre New Jersey and New Jersey Symphony Orchestra present Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back in concert with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra featuring Conductor Constantine Kitsopolous on Saturday January 6, 2019 at 3:00pm. Tickets range from $35-$125. 
A Look At New Jersey Film Festival Spring 2019
(NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ) -- The Rutgers Film Co-op/New Jersey Media Arts Center, in association with the Rutgers University Program In Cinema Studies, presents the New Jersey Film Festival Spring 2019 which marks the festival's 37th Anniversary.  The Festival will take place between January 25 and March 1, 2019. Showcasing new international films, American independent features, experimental and short subjects, classic revivals, and cutting-edge documentaries, the New Jersey Film Festival Spring 2019 will feature over 35 film screenings. 
NJPAC Presents Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Live in Concert With The NJSO
(NEWARK, NJ) -- The Harry Potter Film Concert Series returns to New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) with Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Live in Concert, on Saturday, June 1, 2019 at 2:00pm and 7:30pm. See the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra perform the magical score live while the entire film plays in high-definition on a 40-foot screen.

REVIEW: "Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald"
For better or worse (worse in this writer’s eyes), the success of the Harry Potter franchise is largely responsible for the current Hollywood landscape of endless sequels, prequels and that awful phrase “universe building.” The Potter films showed Hollywood that it was a far safer financial model to hook audiences into returning for instalments of an ongoing series rather than taking a punt on the unknown quantity of original properties.
REVIEW: "Shoplifters"
Earlier this year, writer/director extraordinaire Hirokazu Kore-eda surprised us with The Third Murder, a legal thriller that made for a stark departure from the sentimental family dramas he’s become known for. With his Palme d’Or winning Shoplifters, Kore-eda is back on familiar ground, but this particular family drama shares much in common with The Third Murder. With his thriller, Kore-eda deconstructed the genre, forcing us to question how willingly we place our trust in a storyteller. Similarly, Shoplifters sees Kore-eda lull his audience into a false sense of security, making us develop a warmth and affection towards people who may not warrant such empathy.
REVIEW: "First Man"
The image that most defines the 20th century is that of a man standing on the surface of the moon. The man is astronaut Neil Armstrong, but we can’t see his face as he’s wearing a helmet, the glass of which reflects our collective achievement back at us. When he took a small step, we all took a giant leap with him, and Armstrong instantly became more than a mere man, a symbol. With First Man, director Damien Chazelle takes us inside the famous helmet, stripping away the symbol to tell the story of Armstrong the man.
REVIEW: "Halloween"
In 2013, John Carpenter’s Halloween received a 35th anniversary blu-ray release. The accompanying booklet credited the following line of dialogue to Jamie Lee Curtis’s babysitting heroine Laurie Strode: “Was it the boogeyman?” Of course, that’s a misquote. In the scene in question, Laurie admits to herself that “It WAS the boogeyman,” to which Donald Pleasence’s Doctor Loomis solemnly replies, “As a matter of fact, it was.”
REVIEW: "Cold War"
Back in 2006, German cinema scored something of a breakout global hit with Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck’s The Lives of Others, which followed the travails of a group of disgruntled, pro-western artists in communist era East Germany. At the time I couldn’t help viewing the protagonists of Von Donnersmarck’s drama as the sort of people who would be just as discontented with their lot if they found themselves living in the capitalist west. The grass is always greener on the other side.

Event calendar
Tuesday, Dec 18, 2018


THE NEPTUNES @ Lobby Bar at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Atlantic City, Atlantic City - 7:00pm

Funk Tuesdays @ Crossroads (Garwood), Garwood - 8:00pm

Holiday Express Benefit Concert @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 7:30pm


H.A.G.S. COMEDY SHOW @ The Saint, Asbury Park - 7:30pm

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