20, 2005 --
attended only a few screenings of the more than 300 films in
this festival that ran from November 11 to November 17 at the
Village East cinemas, and included film seminars.
One of the film LPR missed was Andrew Wiest's Pizza, Pesos and Pistoleros,
described as a comedy/action western.
The festival offered a very wide range of documentaries -- on Rwanda ("Somebody's
Child"), on Zimbabwe under the harsh rule of President Mugabe ("A
Stranger in My Homeland"), among others.
There were films about non-earthly beings, including Victoria Liljenquist's "Encounters
with Angels, UFOs and Divine Messages," "Aliens Cut My Hair," from
director Michael MacIntosh, on animal abuse, Jennifer Petty's eight minute "Oomahnee
Farm," and full-length dramas, including Robin Webb's "Seeking Fear," Zhenya
Kiperman's "I Will Avenge You, Iago," Jean Pierre Benard's thriller, "Owen
Gear," Kenn Michael's comedy "Ganked," and Youxin Yang's drama, "Silent
There were documentaries on Australia's legal system, Scott Nathan's "For
We Are Young and Free?"; British politics, Phil Maxwell's "Election
East," a media labor dispute, Patrick McKenna's "Lockout at WKBN."
Perhaps the most intriguing description of a festival film was Paul McBride's "April
Sun," called a "…weird Independent Artsy Film."
The complete festival film listings can be found at www.nyfilmvideo.com
As LPR noted last week, the festival included Christo and Jeanne Claude: On
the Way to Over the River." (The river is the Arkansas River in Colorado,
not, as LPR stated earlier this past week, the Colorado River.)
of Christo and Jeanne Claude's "The Gates" from
last winter - shown here at Central Park West.
Gates" framed by the Manhattan Skyline in the
Much of this documentary, from Wolfram Hissen and Jorg Daniel Hissin, shows The
Gates, from production to placement last February in Central Park.
This 34 minute documentary includes
a delightfully frank interview with Christo, and, for LPR, is a welcome reminder
of those weeks then Central Park's paths were the setting for a work of art called
"The Gates," named for the entrances to the Central Park pathways.
LPR caught the end of Michael Pepe's 12 minute film, "Smoke and Moonlight," about
holding on to material possessions that result in clutter.
LPR got to this film in time to hear that after clutter is removed, it tends
to be replaced with new clutter.
LPR would simply add that the new clutter might not be as bad as the earlier
collection -- and indeed intends to remove
its incipient clutter.
LPR also attended documentaries on wrestling and boxing. These were not, however,
ordinary documentaries. Shawn Crossen's "NWF Kids Pro Wrestling; The Untold
Story" told of the kids profession wrestling league he organized in the
1980's, with interviews of the wrestlers some twenty years later.
Lane (l) and Shawn Crossen
(NWF Kids Pro Wrestling)
The boxing film was Mike deLisa's "The
Superfight: Ali vs. Marciano," about the computer fight between heavyweight
champs Rocky Marciano and Muhammad Ali, that was produced by Murry Woroner.
The film includes interviews of boxing historians Bert Sugar and Mike Silver,
and also includes an interview with David Woroner, son of the late Murry Woroner,
and associate producer of this documentary.
LPR also caught "Pop," a documentary from New Zealand's Aaron Keown
on the deaths of pop artists -- and R.E.M. (rapid eye movement) from Italy's
Simone Ronci, a surrealistic film on dreams. (This writer chatted with Mr.
Ronci and found that he
had a delightful sense of humor, which perhaps he should reveal in his next
Another documentary of some note is Brandon L. Hull's "Operation Thanksgiving," about
a send-off rock and
roll concert given last November to U.S. national guard troops, heading to
The concert was given by Paul Revere and the Raiders. Mr. Revere and his wife
Sydney produced the film and attended the screening.
It is fair to infer that thousands of people gave of their talents, on the
300-plus films shown at the November 2005 New York International Independent
Film and Video Festival -- and from their unheralded efforts, commitment and
dedication, it is now possible to view a presentation of issues perhaps not
fully reported in the mainstream media -- as well as to see on film and video
actors who may well be familiar to filmgoers in the years ahead.
LPR missed "The Farewell," from Germany, but saw the film's creators
attending many of the other films at the festival. This film was directed by
Ben Scharf and Richard Weiss, and produced by Kristian Andresen and Lilly-Britt
Larry Russell, composer of the music for the film -- told LPR that he is
"A Beatles Sing Along Party" next month, (Google "BeatleStock" for
LPR did not see Tiana Lucie's "Lost Tracks," but happened to walk
into the theater when the film's cinematographer and co-producer, Claude T.
Martin, proposed marriage to Ms. Lucie. She accepted.