Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You
Article by Christie McDonald
It's a sad truth in the movie-making world that what could have been some of the greatest films of our time just never got made. They couldn't get the funding, the final push, the right equipment to tighten up those brilliant ideas - you name it there's a reason. And even when they do get made, there are a hundred more reasons a film won't reach it's maximum potential; distribution is not always synonymous with quality, or to take it one step further, with art. That is why we love MoMa. Not only are they aware of this (dare I use the phrase?) tragedy, but they use their vast reaching powers for good, and dedicate an entire event to the films that should have - but for whatever reason have not - received distribution. The event? Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You. Clever, right? Gotta love MoMa. And you gotta love the five films they've chosen to showcase this November 16th-19th.
First up is Red Flag, written and directed by Alex Karpovsky, which is a docu-fictional self-reflection of Karpovsky's experiences of living the dream of the micro-budget indy-filmmaker. In the film newly single Karpovsky (known for Lena Dunham's Girls and Tiny Furniture) embarks on a road trip with a reluctant friend through the southeastern United States to screen his second feature ''Woodpecker'; and of course encounters a series of mishaps and adventures along the way. Sounds like a little bit of genius and a whole lot of fun - we are definitely going to check this one out while we can!
Sun Don't Shine, written and directed by Amy Seimetz, has been described as a combination of Bonnie and Clyde, Wanda, Badlands, Panic in Needle Park, and True Romance set in the Florida Everglades. Do we NEED to say more? Drifters, danger, doomed lovers, and desperate embraces?We are all in on this fresh and innovative throwback to 1970's cinema. Yes ma'am, indeedy.
Written and directed by David Zellner, Kid-Thing is perhaps the darkest of the Zellner Brother's independent films to date. Always loopy and emotionally piercing, they have chosen this time to tell the tale of ten-year-old Annie, abandoned by her parents in rural Texas, filling her days with random moments of solitary vandalism. That is until she stumbles upon the voice of an old woman trapped in an underground well. Is this the voice of the devil? Or is it just some woman who might like to eat a PB&J? And how will prone-to-violence Annie handle this newest conundrum in her life?
Next we have An Oversimplification of Her Beauty by Terence Nance. We aren't going to pretend not to be biased - we love this man. More specifically, we love his creative genius, his individuality, and his gracious and humble demeanor (that keeps us all from feeling like bumbling idiots in his presence). His debut feature uses documentary-style footage, animation, Nance's personal music, and creative editing techniques to showcase a moment in time during his indecisive understandings of a courtship with a woman as it straddles the line of platonic and romantic. Yes, yes, and yes.
Last (but not least as the saying goes) is Tiger Tail in Blue, written and directed by Frank V. Ross. This subtle drama focuses on a recently married couple - Chris and Melody - who's conflicting work schedules keep them apart. Absence doesn't always make the heart grow fonder, and Chris (played by Ross himself) finds himself drawn to his sassy restaurant colleague. Shot by the extraordinarily talented Mike Gibisser, this is a visually beautiful and emotionally stimulating piece that should not go unnoticed.
We hope you all see these films while you can, and let's keep your fingers crossed that even if MoMa's event won't get these particular films distributed, that it will give the filmmakers that little extra push they need to make their next work of art. Regardless of the outcome, we will be standing by, cheering them on.
For more info check out MoMA's site below.