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About Our Reviewers
Aufmuth studied film at UCLA and San Francisco State University. She was instrumental in creating television's "The Reel Review," a film-review talk show that debuted in the spring of 1992. She writes film reviews and features for the Palo Alto Weekly/Palo Alto Online and is a member of the Online Film Critics Society and the San Francisco Film Critics Circle. She is steadfastly serious when she says she wants her ashes laid to rest at the Stanford Theatre, where she saw her first movie more than 40 years ago.
Since 1987, Peter "Groucho" Canavese has been writing film reviews and articles in the San Francisco Bay Area, where he is a member of the San Francisco Film Critics Circle. He authors and maintains an exhaustive website called GrouchoReviews and is the chief film critic for monthly ON Magazine (since 1995), and Celluloid Dreams, a weekly radio show devoted to film. He has been writing reviews for the Palo Alto Weekly/Palo Alto Online since 2009.
Polt has taught English and film studies at San Francisco State University, Merritt College and UC Berkeley Extension. She has written film reviews for Film Quarterly, The East Bay Express, the Berkeley Gazette and other publications. Her reviews have appeared in The Pacific Sun for more than 20 years. She has also written on travel, drama and other subjects for The New York Times, The Dallas Morning News, The Orange County Register, The San Jose Mercury News and Travel & Leisure, among others. Her books include two college English textbooks and "A Thousand Kisses: A Grandmother's Holocaust Letters."
Tavernetti received her master's degree in Cinema from the University of Southern California and teaches in the Film/TV Department at De Anza College. She is the co-author of a textbook, "The Critical Eye: An Introduction to Looking at Movies" (Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company), and recently contributed an article to an anthology, The Hollywood Indian. Besides serving on a number of screenwriting and film festival juries, she directed the Palo Alto Film & Video Festival for Northern California Independents for five years. She has reviewed films for the Palo Alto Weekly/Palo Alto Online since 1988.
Hanley was born in San Francisco, but has lived in the Palo Alto area for the past 30 years. He began studying film at the age of 16, and has since co-produced and co-directed (alongside his identical twin brother) five short films and four feature-length films, including the thriller "Rehearsal" (2006) and the mystery/drama "Table for Six" (2010). Following college, he studied acting at the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco. He has been writing film reviews for the Palo Alto Weekly/Palo Alto Online since 2001 and has won numerous awards for his reviews from the Peninsula Press Club.