RECAP: Phoenix Film Festival 2016

The Phoenix Film Festival, Arizona’s largest film festival annually screening over 150 films at Harkins Scottsdale 101, has officially ended. However, if you did not get the chance to attend the festival this year, don’t worry! We have the official recap of the festival below.

As I mentioned above, The Phoenix Film Festival annually screens over 150 films and is known to be one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the country. Over 25,000 attendees make their way to the 8 day festival each and every year at Harkins Scottsdale 101. In addition to screening films, the festival also hosts parties and filmmaking seminars on site.

Myself, Matt Casillas, and Chief Film Critic for The Pulse, Justin Lyons, received the amazing opportunity and honor of attending the Phoenix Film Festival as members of the press. It was the first time attending the festival for the both us, so we were not 100% sure as to what we should expect from it.

The first day at the festival consisted of Justin and I picking up our press passes, selecting which movies we wanted to see, and getting tickets for each of those movies. The volunteers at the festival’s box office were incredibly helpful in making sure that we got everything that we needed for the days ahead of us. Once we left the box office, our total number of movie tickets was 18. Did we get to all 18 of those movies? No, we only got to about 15 or 16 of those movies. However, the great thing about the Phoenix Film Festival is that you can trade in your ticket in the event that you are unable to attend a particular screening. Trading in your ticket means that someone else can enjoy the movie you are unable to attend.

From the box office, Justin and I made our way over to Harkins Scottsdale 101 which is a quick 1 or 2 minute walk from where the festival’s box office was setup. Our first movie did not start for a little while, so we decided to sit in front of Starbucks and “borrow” their Wi-Fi for a little while so that Justin could publish his review of The Boss, which you can read here. Before we knew it, it was time to head into the movie theater to see our first movie! We were greeted by yet another fantastic volunteer who showed us the way to our first movie: Dating Daisy.

From there on, we saw nearly 15 or 16 different movies throughout our time at the Phoenix Film Festival. These movies include Welcome to Happiness, which turned out to be one of our favorites, Sing Street, Lucky U Ranch, Parallel, Is That A Gun In Your Pocket? and many more. For a complete list of Justin Lyons’ Phoenix Film Festival movie reviews, click here.

Overall, if you’re a fan of indie movies, or maybe you’re just looking for something to do, the Phoenix Film Festival is a fantastic way to find one of your new favorite movies. Justin and I can’t wait to attend next year’s festival to see what new and exciting things that may have to offer! For more information on the Phoenix Film Festival, you can click right here.

Thank you to the Phoenix Film Festival for allowing the Pulse Movie Crew to attend this year!

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Matt Casillas

Hey, it's Matt Casillas! I am a Digital Content Producer and Editor for The Pulse. Have any questions for me? Please feel free to email me at movies@pulseradio.fm