Benjamin Bratt’s star has shone (Law & Order on the small screen, Traffic on the big screen)—and sometimes it’s dimmed (Miss Congeniality, Catwoman, the failed 24 wannabe E-Ring television drama). But what’s clear from his work in Piñero, Love in the Time of Cholera and The Woodsman is that Bratt’s always seeking out material with serious dramatic potential, a social consciousness and that aims to say something deep about the human condition and our emotional/artistic wiring. Cue the lights as Bratt’s latest film, La Mission, continues to make its rounds through the film festival circuit with its tale about a macho, just-got-out-of-prison father (played by Bratt) trying to keep things straight and narrow in a San Francisco neighborhood as he spends time with his “Mission Boyz” friends who restore junked classic cars. La Mission will be the Opening Night Film for the 11th Annual Lake Arrowhead Film Festival, a four-day event showcasing nearly 90 films, a free seminar and plenty of opportunities for movie buffs and industry movers & shakers to rub elbows. Plus the whole thing goes down at the scenically awesome Lake Arrowhead Resort and Spa. Friday’s Gala Awards Dinner will be hosted by actor Ernie Hudson and feature an all-star tribute to Rock Hudson. Our review? Two thumbs up. Way up.
11th Annual Lake Arrowhead Film Festival at the Lake Arrowhead Resort & Spa, 27984 Hwy 189, Lake Arrowhead, (909) 337-7587 (festival); www.lakearrowheadfilmfestival.com. Thurs-Sun, April 22-25. Admission $10-$160.