Full Frame Recap Day 3
I skipped day 2 of the Full Frame Film Festival because I had a prior commitment but I was ready to go bright and early on day 3. My morning began walking the halls in-between the cinemas. There were a few people seated in last minute lines and I tried to get as many director shots as I could.
The first film I saw for the day was Nile Perch, A short about the life cycle of the Perch in around Lake Victoria. It was shot in high contrast black and white. It was followed by a River Changes Course. (many shorts were paired with longer film so some viewings were double-features). I was very moved by A River Changes Course which followed several families in Rural Cambodia, a fishing family, a 2 sets of rice farmers. (review to follow later). At the conclusion of both films were the Director Q&As. Josh Gibson the director of Nile Perch is no stranger to Full Frame, many of the questions he received were about his style choice in filming in Black & white as well as what effects this fishing is having on the ecosystem. Kalyanee Mam director of A River Changes Course also fielded fishing questions. In her case fish were harder to catch with in Nile Perch they were clearly plentiful as they are exported to Europe, but the issues with bad harvest for the rice farmers, the older children needing to leave to find jobs elsewhere and the death of one of the children in the fishing family.
My next film of the day was Manhunt. The last minute line for this was very long. Manhunt directed by Greg Barker, focuses on the “sisterhood: a group of 6 women who started on the hunt for Osama Bin Laden 20 years before he was captured and killed. This is not Zero Dark Thirty. This movie focuses on not only those behind the scenes but also how politics and who was in the White House at the time affected what happened and what could be down. I was angry watching this. Its meant to stir your emotions. The Q&A was great for this film. (More details in a full film review later)
I ended up leaving before they were done to do a mad dash over to see Ash and The Undocumented. Ash (Director: Nathan S. Duncan) is a short that explores the Austin State Hospital’s Insane Asylum. The haunting computerized voice that read doctor’s logs of patients who suffer from mental illnesses as well as other issues as simple as melancholia and the thousands of graves marked merely with a number were powerful images. These people are unidentified and in many cases it has been lost to history. The abandoned halls of the hospital with peeling paint look like something fresh out of a horror film. The Q&A revealed that the location is rented out to film crews just for that reason. The Undocumented (Director: Marco Williams) takes on the immigration issue focusing on a strip of the border in Arizona. The change is it focuses on all those who die crossing. People cross all day, every day but the numbers who die keep rising. There was a standing ovation afterward and an amazing Q&A. (full review)
I was supposed to catch After Tiller (Directors Martha Shane & Lana Wilson) later but I hadn’t eaten since I had waffles at 8am. The Mountain Dew I consumed through the day wasn’t cutting it. The movie was a hot ticket and they ended up turning people aware from the last minute line. I did go in after the movie for the Q&A. After Tiller ended up being shown on Sunday so I did get to catch it.
Stay on the lookout for my final recap day and a roundup of the festival in a future post.