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Review: 'K11'

March 27, 2013 1:14 p.m.

KPBS film critic Beth Accomando reviews "K11" opening at the new Digital Gym Cinema.

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This is a rush transcript created by a contractor for KPBS to improve accessibility for the deaf and hard-of-hearing. Please refer to the media file as the formal record of this interview. Opinions expressed by guests during interviews reflect the guest’s individual views and do not necessarily represent those of KPBS staff, members or its sponsors.

ANCHOR INTRO: The film “K11” was a hit at the San Diego Latino Film Festival earlier this month. Now it returns to San Diego for a week’s run at the Digital Gym Cinema on El Cajon Boulevard. KPBS arts reporter Beth Accomando says both the film and the venue are exciting news for filmgoers.

DIGITALGYM 1 (ba) (1:15)

During this year’s San Diego Latino Film Festival the Media Arts Center opened the doors to its new Digital Gym Cinema. Executive director Ethan Van Thillo says the 49 seat theater is a great, intimate venue.

ETHAN VAN THILLO: So we offer a space here that every week it will open up new films on a Friday and go for a whole week, independent films, foreign films, from 10 in the morning to 10 at night, and really an alternative to the other cinemas here.

Opening this weekend is “K11.” The film careens from campy prison exploitation flick to gritty drama as it looks to a ward reserved for gay and transgender prisoners. The film cheats by casting women as the transgender men but there’s no denying the over the top rage fueling Kate Del Castillo’s performance as the returning diva.

K11 CLIP: I’m gone for one week working mind you and I come back to find this in my bed. Unacceptable! The mouse is back and I run this dorm in and out. Any of you got a problem with that? Step Up.

Del Castillo usually plays the sweet young thing so the against-type casting and her total dedication to the role are fun to watch. There’s added pleasure in seeing her tear up the screen at the new Digital Gym Cinema, where films can flex their indie muscle.

Beth Accomando, KPBS News.