Wednesday, June 27, 2012

BAMcinemaFest '12: Critics' Notebook

BAMcinemaFest '12: Critics' Notebook: by Steve Dollar


Shorts—as in short
films—have become a peculiar manifestation of film festival
culture. Almost any festival you go to will have multiple shorts
programs on the schedule. And guaranteed, the filmmaker you meet who
wins the short-film prize will be back soon with something special,
whether it's the guy who made Hesher
(see the Down Under zombie mash note I
Love Sarah Jane
) or the guy who
made Beasts of the Southern
(anticipated by Glory
at Sea
). I don't really know
under what circumstances they are exhibited anywhere else outside the
institutional/museum/repertory world. Nonetheless, YouTube and Vimeo
appear to be terrific bounties for short-film surfing and many an
auteur's DVD bonus features would be sorely lacking if they didn't
include available and relevant short exercises that laid the groundwork
for the masterpiece at hand.

Josh and Benny Safdie had the
bright idea of packaging their recent short The
Black Balloon
(a prize-winner at
Sundance) with The
Red Balloon
Albert Lamorisse's 1956 classic to which it pays homage, along with
's The

and the animated 1935 Balloon
Pincushion Man
) and circulating
the whole shebang under the title: "Take Me to the Balloony Bin!" It's
touring the United States now, through the agency of the CInema
Conservancy, and just screened as part of BAMcinemaFest—now
in its fourth year at Brooklyn's BAMcinematek.
Continued reading BAMcinemaFest '12: Critics' Notebook...

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