Ben Umstead
East Coast Editor; Los Angeles, California

Born in New England, bred around the Capital Beltway, and schooled in the heart of Hollywood, Ben joined Team Twitch in the summer of 2009 when he moved to NYC. He can once again be found wandering the streets of Los Angeles.

Review: LISTEN UP PHILIP Seeks Sympathy For The Asshole

A few years back Alex Ross Perry caught the eye of many watchers in the American independent scene with his second feature, the delightfully awful (or is that awfully delightful?) The Color Wheel. A sibling road tripper with the penchant... More »
  

The DC Cinematic Universe Ramps Up

Are you ready for a whole lotta DC Comics characters cavorting around on the big screen? Well, regardless if you are, they're coming. In droves. And in pretty fast succession. After years of questioning when and how DC Comics would... More »
  

Hey, NYC! Wanna See JOHN WICK Early And For Free?

If you're a regular Twitch reader then the answer should be a resounding god damn YES.Now, while I have yet to see this Keanu Reeves starring actioner from stuntmen turned directors David Leitch and Chad Stahelski, everyone I spoke with... More »
  

Brad Bird Takes Us To TOMORROWLAND In First Teaser

Long in development at Disney is Brad Bird's second live-action effort as director, Tomorrowland. Bird and screenwriter Damon Lindleof take the theme land inside Disney parks that focuses on science, technology and the future, and turn it into an adventure... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Wrap: Over 70 Movies Reviewed + Our Top Picks!

Holy Toledo is that headline correct? Yes Twitch has reviews published for over 70 of the films that played at Fantastic Fest 2014! (There were 76 non-repertory films screened at Fantastic Fest 2014). So why were we slacking? Well... More »
  

Watch The Trailer For P.T. Anderson's INHERENT VICE

With just under a week before its bow at the New York Film Festival, Warner Bros. has released the first trailer for Paul Thomas Anderson's adaption of the Thomas Pynchon novel Inherent Vice. And it is glorious... gloriously colorful, weird... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: NORWAY, A Delightfully Odd Vampire Tale From Greece

If you're craving electronic music, handmade sets and 80s cinema homages aplenty with your basic vampire lore, then Yannis Veslemes' debut feature Norway is one to keep an eye on. By no means a cult classic, the film is wonderfully... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: FELT, Healing Through Art Gets Extremely Human

There comes a moment early in Toad Road director Jason Banker's Felt which beautifully sets the tone for what is to unfold over the next 70 or so minutes of his second narrative feature: After partying with a few young... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014 Review: BLIND, A Stunning, Sensitive Ode To The Lonely

What we see: A street in Oslo, Norway. A dress shop. Pedestrians stream on by. Standing on the inside of the shop is a German Shepard. It Barks. Spittle hits the window. Pedestrians stream on by. What we hear: A... More »
  

Crowdfund This! XMAS IN JULY, A Psychedelic Take On Scrooge

Hey! You got my Charles Dickens in My Charles Darwin, and My Charles Darwin in My Charles Dickens! Or, well, so says Joel Clark and the crew behind Xmas In July, a psychedelic feature that reinterprets Dickens' A Christmas Carol... More »
  

Watch The Trailer For Sundance Winning FISHING WITHOUT NETS

While we've had an interesting string of films about Somali pirates, Cutter Hodierne's feature debut is the only one of these that is from the perspective of the pirates themselves.Fishing Without Nets follows a young Somali fishermen who is thrust... More »
  

Watch This Short Now: DAYBREAK, A Stunning, Violent Look At Pre-Teen Life

That moment before puberty... it's as if you were falling down a bottomless pit, only you know you're, someday soon, going to hit the bottom. It's out of time, out of mind, of the body, a foreign body. Your body...... More »
  

Fantastic Fest 2014: Twitch's 12 Most Anticipated Films From Our 12 On-Hand Contributors

Hallelujah! It is Fantastic Fest time once again! The fest kicks off tomorrow, and what's more, Austin's ridiculously fun genre festival is back at its spiritual home of the Drafthouse South Lamar. You might say we are a little excited.... More »
  

Check Out 5 Exclusive Stills From Midnight Madness Selection THE EDITOR

Ahead of its big premiere tonight at Midnight Madness in Toronto, we've got Five Exclusive stills for you from Matthew Kennedy & Adam Brooks' giallo sendup The Editor. A one-time (and now one-handed) master film editor toiling in the cinematic... More »
  

James Franco Is All Set To RANT

If there are two names that get people flapping and flaming their lips more than most, that'd be renaissance man extraordinaire James Franco and mostly author Chuck Palahniuk. And now since Franco has optioned the rights to Palahniuk's novel Rant,... More »
  

Nothing Is What It Seems In The Trailer For Post-WWII Thriller PHOENIX

For the past 14 years German director Christian Petzold has been steadily building up a reputation as a post-renuifciation master, subverting genre plots and tropes into fascinating and haunting meditations on modern (and the largely still fractured) Germany. But with... More »
  

Beyond Fest Is Back!

Oh, how they grow up so fast. Just last year Beyond Fest was merely a new born suckling at the crusty teet of its six-headed mother from Mars (they need moms). And now, it's walking and talking and throwing shrunken... More »
  

Raindance Film Festival Announces Their 2014 Lineup

Just when you thought it was safe to come to Twitch and not hear about a film festival... wait, when did you ever think that was going to happen? Film festivals are our bread and butter. Anyway... While much of... More »
  

Folklore Of The Blues: 5 Questions With MEMPHIS Director Tim Sutton

There is magic in Memphis. Magic and soul, fear and frustration. Music, passion and a heavenly voice that tilts from the throat of a modern monk on a quest for the divine amongst the derelict.When I first got word of... More »
  

Review: MEMPHIS, A Mesmerizing Meditation On The American South

Dusk. A blue summer day ending on a worn and warm boulevard. The pin prick glow of street lamps dazzle in the distance. A figure lumbers down the block. A hat tipped to one side, he is lost in thought.... More »
  
 
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