Ben Umstead
U.S. Editor; Los Angeles, California

Ben joined Team Twitch in the summer of 2009 when he moved to NYC, where he established an east coast conglomerate of writers for the site. He currently resides in LA, where he works as a producer and script consultant.

J Hurtado's Top 10 Movie Memories Of 2014

Here we go again!My standard admonition about my own lists is that these are, in no way AT ALL, the best movies of the year. They are the ones that gave me the biggest thrills, made me think, made me... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Best Of 2014: Ben Umstead's Reflections And Favorites

As much as I can see 2014 packed to the gills with films people fell head over heels for, many of those mainstream and even Twitch favorites will be vacant from this list, simply because I thought this was a... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Twitch's Top 10 Movies Of 2014

And that's the end of that chapter. 2014 is running on fumes and all eyes are already looking to awards season and the behemoths of next year that threaten to decimate the box office. The Avengers: Age of Ultron, Star... More »
By James Marsh   
  

Sony Scraps THE INTERVIEW Release

4:50 PST UPDATE: Sony Has 'no further release plans for The Interview', including VOD or DVD/Blu. It started with the infamous hack into Sony servers last month. Then vague threats towards attacks on theaters that would show it. And despite... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Crowdfund This: Dream Inspired Web Series COLLECTIVE:UNCONCIOUS

It's not everyday you get a group of up and coming American directors pooling their colleague's/ collaborator's dreams for their next creative endeavor, but that's exactly what collective:unconscious is.What's to get excited about here is two-fold: Project producer Dan Schoenbrun... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Watch Horror Comedy Short BUNDLE OF NERVES

For two small town cops who tackle paranormal activities on an everyday basis, it's the looming threat of fatherhood that really gets their stomachs in knotted. That's the basic setup for Ryan Spindell's short film Bundle Of Nerves. Spindell, director... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Check Out This Living Poster For Guy Maddin's THE FORBIDDEN ROOM

Canadian director Guy Maddin has a new film coming. Or is films? The director has been working on a multimedia project known as Seances, or Spiritismes in some circles, which sees his cast and crew holding a seance to invite... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Slamdance Announces Their 2015 Narrative And Doc Competition Titles

While many of the below names in the narrative and documentary competition for the 21st edition of the Slamdance Film Festival will not be familiar to most of us out there right now, at least a couple of them should... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Jamie Foxx Enters Harmony Korine's THE TRAP

There are few things that can get us film fans more pumped up than particular actor-director pairings. A few recent ones that got tongues wagging were Nicolas Cage and Werner Herzog for Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans, Daniel... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

A24 Boards Alex Garland's EX MACHINA; Watch The Trailer Now

[UPDATED with trailer, which looks great!]  Alex Garland, writer of 28 Days Later, Sunshine and Dredd, has just directed his debut feature, Ex Machina. The folks at A24 have stepped up to distribute the film in the US, with the... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Crowdfund This: SPA NIGHT, A Korean-American Film On Coming Out

One of the major pluses being in the independent film world is having more freedom to examine topics of race, culture and sexuality more intimately and honestly than most studio fare can. Director Andrew Ahn started here with his 2012... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Marvel Announces Full Phase 3 Lineup, Including CAPTAIN MARVEL & BLACK PANTHER

Ladies and gentlemen... let the classic DC/Marvel rivalry officially commence on the big screen. Not to be outdone by the recent announcement from DC/WB about their post-Batman v. Superman slate, The House Of Ideas and The House Of Mouse unveiled... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Crowdfund This: ACTRESS, One Woman's Performance Off Screen... On Screen

Robert Greene is one of those filmmakers who may seem to the casual viewer to dabble in different parts of the making of a film. To others he's one of those cinematic polyglot types. The editor of Alex Ross Perry's... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

AFI Fest Announces Full 2014 Lineup

If you're an Angelino like myself then chances are you covet early November as that time to catch up on all the buzz-worthy film festival faves that come roaring into town courtesy of AFI Fest. This year, of course, is... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

First Trailer For AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON Officially Drops

The teaser trailer for Joss Whedon's superhero all-star sequel Avengers: Age Of Ultron was supposed to premiere next Tuesday during an episode of Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. Today, a lo-res version got leaked, putting the internet in more of a... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

Hey, NYC! Wanna See NIGHTCRAWLER Early And For Free?

That answer should be a big 'ol yes.Los Angeles denizen Louis Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal) survives by scavenging and petty theft. He stumbles into a new career as a cameraman and -- armed with a camcorder and police scanner -- begins... More »
By Ben Umstead   
  

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 »
By Ben Umstead   
  

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 »
By Ben Umstead   
  

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 »
By Ben Umstead   
  

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 »
By Ben Umstead   
  
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