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Sonoma County Gazette
There is a lot of good watch to catch this month on the screen and stage.
There is a lot of good watch to catch this month on the screen and stage.

San Francisco Film Festival
'The Best of Enemies'
'Five Feet Apart'

'Jesus Christ Superstar' 
'You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown'

and more...


Apr 9, 2019
by Don Gibble


The San Francisco Film Festival opens April 10th and goes to April 23rd. For those of you who enjoyed last month’s Sonoma International Film Festival and the Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival, this one is much bigger and more celebrities attend. The highlight for me at Sonoma was meeting Julia Ormond, who came for her opening night premiere of“Ladies in Black”. The film has no special effects and no car crashes. A simple movie that the whole family can enjoy. The best documentary at Sebastopol was“Harvest Season”. The subjects of the film attended the opening night premiere and werehappy with the outcome. If you missed it you can see it on  PBS May 13th.

The problem with having both film festivals the same weekend is that its hard for someone who lives in Sonoma to drive to Sebastopol when they an just stay in Sonoma and enjoy the offerings there. Same with someone who lives in Sebastopol. Why would they drive to Sonoma when they can see amazing films in Sebastopol. Hopefully next year one of the festivals will move to the following week.

Back to San Francisco where it’s an investment in time to attend a film there if you live in Sonoma County. The following film is worth the drive. The one I’m excited about is“Book Smart”directed by actress Olivia Wilde. This is her first film she directed and its very funny. On the eve of their high school graduation, Amy and Molly realize they’ve excelled at academics and failed at fun. They plan to erase that mistake by stuffing four years of hijinks into one wild night. This is  the one to see. At the legendary  Castro Theater April 16th.  Go to for tickets and more information.

Opening this month at your local theater is “The Best of Enemies” starring my friend and recent Oscar winner Sam Rockwell and Taraji P Henson. The true story of the unlikely relationship between Ann Atwater, an outspoken civil rights activist and C.P. Ellis, a local Ku Klux Klan leader. Could Sam earn his third Oscar nomination in 3 years? Let’s hope! It opens April 5th.

Also opening this weekend is “Shazam!” starring Zachary Levi. A fun superhero movie where teenager Billy Batson tests out his newfound powers.

This should hold Marvel fans until “Avengers: Endgame” opens April 26th. I want to warn all of you that this movie is 3 hours long! Thor, Black Widow, Captain America and Bruce Banner must figure out a way to bring back their vanquished allies from an epic showdown with Thanos. The last ”Avengers” movie was awesome so this one will be better!

If you missed “Five Feet Apart” last month because of the blockbuster films you still have a chance to see it. It is the best movie I’ve seen in the last 10 years. Seriously! Haley Lu Richardson and Cole Sprouse are delightful and go a long way to holding together this sad romantic drama. Perfect for the whole family!

For my live theater fans there is “Jesus Christ Superstar”directed by the very talented Lesley McCauley who has been directing at the Junior College for over 20 years. I asked her which of the many productions she directed over the years stood out and I agree with her.“Watermelon Nights” from 1999 and the all male cast of “Twelfth Night” from 2016. I’m excited to see her take on “Jesus Christ Superstar” which stars Philip Percy Williams who starred in San Francisco’s “Beach Blanket Babylon” for 11 years. One of my favorite local actors, Nate Mercier also is in the cast. The show is playing at   Maria Carrillo High School April 19th through May 5th.  Call  707 527-4307 for more information.

One of my favorite shows of all time is “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” and it will be playing at the   Novato Theater Company  from April 5th through April 28th. There are three Sonoma County actors in the cast including Lorenzo Alviso playing Linus, Robert Nelson playing Charlie Brown and Tika Moon playing Lucy. Call 855 682 8491 for more information.

And if you haven’t bought your tickets for “Hamilton” you still have a chance to see the best show ever! Go to and email me with your thanks! 

@ Have a fun April!


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