'Ff'lo (fflo) wrote,

Film Fest in town

Opening night was good. Highlight of the reception: a free massage from Wendy, who flagged me down on the way to the Ladies'. Of the films, I was especially fond of Souvenir, a B/W puppet snowglobe fable, shot with a toy camera, about the momentousness of the simplest connecting with others, after isolation; Sea Change, a beautiful (yes, beautiful) meditative sweep across an English trailer park ("caravan" park), with overlapping slips from one time setting to another, capturing great light, exterior and interior; and, contrary to type (for my likes), Still Life, a kind of surreal horror short, of a sort, wherein a guy popping pills to drive well past the point of exhaustion finds himself in a town inhabited by mannequins where there should be people (and creepy stuff ensues). Ringo was fun, too, as was Joe: The Body Electric---those both use old film footage in fun ways, the former with westerns (offering a little of that topical cowpoke homoeroticism), the latter with old educational films.

I'm guessing the audience vote might go to the Dutch documentary Who Buried Paul McCartney? That one was fun & all, but the fascinating thing to me was how it got almost as many laughs at the very notion that anyone would take nonsense like the Paul-is-dead thing seriously (or care so much anyway) as it did for the absurdly goofy outfit of the one recurring fella whose piece in the Michigan Daily, the film & fella would have it, really got the ball rolling on the elaborate narrative of the rumor. My former acquaintance Beatle freaks might well have not appreciated the prevalence in the young audience of this attitude (which, I confess, rather made me enjoy the film more).

I hope to make it to more screenings this week---particularly that of Made in Secret: The Story of the East Van Porn Collective. And maybe catch some of the winners on Sunday.

Sometimes film fest attendees annoy me, walking around being all self-consciously hip-ly filmmaker-ly, having those conversations in which you can just feel the primary intent is to make connections that might be useful down the road, or just being all full of themselves, like the guy on the long cell call about how the person on the other end really should think twice about whether he (surely a he) wants to end up in court and (thus) litigate (talker knows the word litigate, as he'll prove by using it again a few times, especially loudly) cuz, did the harangued one know?, this guy's roommate is a lawyer now, yeah he passed the bar two months ago, so blah blah blah blah blah blah this call is terminated, it's terminated [fold-click; sit, suddenly uncomfortably unengaged]. Happily, howe'er, our festival isn't the worst that way, in my experience. And last night there seemed to be more people there just to watch the films than to bask in their own filmmakerly glory. Not that there's no blustery self-importance to many a film viewer, too, but perhaps you know what I mean.

I like the A2 fest. Every year I think how the next year'll be the one when I get the fest pass & take time off work. Not that I could stand to be there for every experimental animation or heart-wrenching documentary of oppression, poverty, mental illness, etc. But still. I live in a town that has this thing. A small city, in the middle(-ish) of the freakin' U.S., with a festival like this. Not to attend would be about as crazy as how absurdly rarely I visit the Ark.
Tags: movies

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