Strange but True: Shorts Program II
Location: Bartos Screening Room
These five shorts take vastly different approaches to documentary film, from entirely archival to audio-based essayistic, and from low-rent investigative to collaborative and observational. But one thing they all have in common is a sense of humor and play, exulting in the absurdities of life as a way of reflecting on, or hinting at, larger ideas and universal experience. Approx Running Time: 80 mins. (This programs short films previously shown before feature presentations)
Balloonfest (Dir. Nathan Truesdell. 2016, 6 mins). In 1986, Cleveland sought to lift spirits by launching a record 1.5 million balloons into the sky, but unpredictable winds and a boat accident in Lake Erie brought what might have been a harmless publicity stunt crashing down to earth.
The Spiritual Life of Wholesale Goods (John Wilson, 2016, 15 mins). An investigation into the source of extraneous spiritual messages on dollar store electronics packaging leads a thrifty Brooklyn filmmaker to the saddest trade show in Las Vegas.
Copycat (Charlie Lyne, 2015, 9 mins). In the summer of 1990, a teenage filmmaker successfully raises $100,000 to shoot a pioneering horror film. 25 years later, he tells the story of a cult classic that never was.
A Short Family Film (Igor Bezinovic, 2016, 20 mins) Marica is a voluble older woman eager to open her home and share her life with a visiting documentary crew. But it doesn’t take long for her story to open up into some surprising territory, including a self-reenacted altercation involving her daughter-in-law and a kitchen knife. Staring out through his sober yet stylized frames, Croatian director Igor Bezinovic rides the line between hilarity and mortal unease.
Something About Life (Nebojsa Slijepcevic. Croatia. 2016. 30 min. U.S. Premiere. In Croatian with English Subtitles.) Even within her cohort of troubled teens in Slavonia, Croatia, 14 year-old Ivana is a girl apart. Once a week, a professional drummer comes to their shared home to teach them to drum in unison, but Ivana refuses, preferring instead to take out her aggressions through boxing. Slowly Ivana starts to reveal of herself, constantly weighing her attraction to the idea of a movie being made about her life, and wary of what it could reveal.