So I just got back from the Kinodrome Film Festival and managed to get a full night’s rest since I live here and actually left the festival “early” (I’ll get into that in a bit). This was my first festival so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I got there early and paid $10.00 to park in a public CSU lot (Grand total of $21.00 since I was there from 11:00am to 8:00pm) and watched almost every block (also more on that later).
I wasn’t sure which building Drinko Hall was so I trusted my maps app and walked in the front door of an unmarked building and luckily I was correct except I walked in on the first floor and the festival was on the second. I registered and got my handy artist badge and T-shirt, grabbed a program and walked into the theater to start watching the first block of “Long Short Films”
Long Short Films
I missed the first 10min of the first short film (“Because of Little Apple”) because holy crap was this festival run efficiently. This film started at 11:00am on the dot and from the time I walked into the building and got through registration and into the theater it was about 10min. The only problem was the program director committed the cardinal sin of mixing Apple with Windows software which caused every video file to glitch out and freeze anywhere from one to five seconds every five minutes or so. It took some work but I managed to stay focused on the films every time that happened.
Of the films in the first block my three favorite were “Fragments” by Christina Jun, even though it didn’t have an ending, it just…ended. “The Lamb” by Kyle Kleege and “Girl in the Blue Bra” by Ayesha Abouelazm.
This was a hard block to watch because of the glitches but I enjoyed most of them. A couple that stood out were “Dance in Peace“, Saturno 9, “St. Anthony’s Fire“, Samantha Bloomfield, and “Upgrade“, Damien Lecointe.
So this was the block I skipped. Mainly because it was almost 2:00pm so I was hungry and I’m just not into experimental films. Either because they’re all crap or I’m just an uncultured swine and misunderstand the point of alternative forms of filmmaking. Maybe both, all I know is, six straight minutes of a naked guy staring into the camera reading excepts from The Bible, Quran, and the Talmud while “Zombie” by the Cranberries plays backwards is not my idea of a a good time.
Long Short (block 2) and Mid-Short Films
I was the most disappointed in this block because almost every film was just bad. Either the cinematography was weird and uninteresting, the audio was obnoxiously loud, or the writing/acting was so bad it was offensive.
One short in particular “Ro-Boob: The Farting Robot” I was actually excited to see because I like campy B-movie horrors and part of my sense of humor definitely appreciates a good fart joke, but god damn it this film was just fucking stupid. Firstly, the “Robot” was a guy in a gorilla suit with a diving helmet on (fucking stupid) who just walked up to fat ugly topless women with fat ugly dudes they were with and “farted” on them (my description is funnier than the actual film). It wasn’t funny, it looked like shit, and thank god it was a “silent” film because the fart noises sounded like they were downloaded 10 years ago from a free “sounds” website. This film just fucking sucked.
“Bride of Frankie” by Devi Snively was cute but I wish the acting were better and “The Talisman” by Nolan Guerriero, was not good as a short film but could definitely be a decent to good feature length if he got better actors.
I really enjoyed this block. “Millenials Anonymous”, Josh Schendel was kitschy cute and funny, “Arachnoid”, John Maslowski was hilarious for being 30 seconds long. “Family Doesn’t End with Blood”, Nina Hummel / Joe Kowalski was a 48hour film project sent to the festival circuit and was pretty good.
Overall I had a really good time at this Festival. This was their first annual and besides the software glitch and aspect ratio they started and ended on time, the awards were very impressive (first place got a legit plaque and certificate), and the staff were very well organized. I’ll definitely be submitting to this festival again when I have an actual film to present. I was very proud to have “Uphill” selected and even though I didn’t win anything, the experience was a reward in itself. Thank you to Event Founder / Programming Director: B. R. Tatalovic and Event Manager: Deborah Ochwat for putting on a great first film festival!
I forgot to followup with the “leaving early” thing. I had to leave early during the awards ceremony after I found out Uphill didn’t win anything, not because I’m a sore loser but because I had already paid $21 for parking and my time was expiring, so instead of paying for another hour just to use an extra 10min I opted to listen to the Browns lose in overtime against the Raiders on the car ride home.
On that note, the majority of the festivals “attendees” showed up for the last hour of the festival. That’s a crock of shit and should be more frowned upon by the industry. If you took the time to make a film and pay a fee to have it submitted to a festival, at least have the decency to show up. I didn’t have anything screen, I simply had my script selected.