By Tad Wilkes, Nightlife & Lifestyles Editor
Well before the Double Decker Arts Festival brings live music and art to the Square in the embrace of (usually) warm weather, the Oxford Film Festival will invite film lovers into the warm walls of the Malco Theater in Oxford for a dynamic lineup of films, February 21-24, 2013.
Opening the festival on Thursday, February 21 will be a special Thacker Mountain Radio show from 6 to 7 p.m. followed by the world premiere of several 90-second community films and Joe York’s documentary Ten. from 7 to 8 p.m. The Thacker event is free and open to the public. Donations are accepted at the door for the two non-profit organizations.
“The four-day festival will offer many great films and informative panels with film makers and experts on hand to share with the community,” said the festival’s Executive Director Molly Fergusson.
Founded in 2003 as a project of the Yoknapatawpha Arts Council, the Oxford Film Festival is an independent non-profit 501c3 organization committed to celebrating the art of independent cinema. The Oxford Film Festival entertains and educates its participants, providing residents and visitors with the opportunity to watch independent films as well as to meet the filmmakers and learn from industry professionals. The variety of films and panels attracts film-goers of all ages and backgrounds.
For the festival, tickets are:
Multi-day, Fri-Sat-Sun = $30; student discount (with valid ID) $25
Day pass = $15; student discount (with valid ID) $12
Individual film pass = $8; student discount (with valid ID) $6.50
Party Pass (upgrade) $50 (access for one person to Friday and Saturday night party)Tickets are not required for Thursday night’s events.
Tickets are now available at www.oxfordfilmfest.com.
The selected juried 2013 films are as follows:
Directed by Eric Levy / California / 93 min.
Jim and Bridget are on a road trip to visit Jim’s mother on the anniversary of his father’s death. Along the way, Jim proposes and Bridget says no. When they arrive at his mother’s house, she showers them with congratulations. Caught up in the moment, they pretend to be engaged for the weekend.
It’s a Disaster
Directed by Todd Berger / California / 90 min.
Eight friends sit down for a brunch on a weekend afternoon. Oh, and it’s the end of the world.
Pictures of Superheroes
Directed by Don Swaynos / Texas / 74 min.
An out-of-work maid gets a job cleaning up after an overworked businessman and the aggressively messy roommate he’s forgotten about, sending her into a surreal world of candy, insult comics, and pretend marriages.
The Playback Singer
Directed by Suju Vijayan / California / 90 min.
An aimless, would-be, jungle-gym architect finds his existence disrupted – and his marriage upended – when his prickly, Indian, B-movie playback singer father-in-law comes to visit and overstays his welcome.
Directed by Earl Crew Goshorn / Tennessee / 90 min.
When “out and proud” Jason Potts returns to his Tennessee hometown he quickly learns that life has not gotten better for the gay high school kids. Wanting to give them some hope, Jason plans to hold the first ever gay pride parade down Main Street. Unknown to Jason, a conservative politician plots to use the parade for his own political reasons.
Directed by Richard Speight, Jr. / California / 10 min.
One man’s life becomes the lesson of the day as he takes a frenetic ride through his own twisted version of the American experience.
Directed by Yaz Rabadi / Canada / 6 min.
An elderly Sikh who has been victimized as a result of his race struggles to deal with his given circumstances in the aftermath of the violent attack.
Directed by Rebecca Pugh / Alabama / 7 min.
One woman’s quest to find the perfect chair.
Directed by Jess Scott-Hunter / England / 4 min.
Tim thinks he might just have found the girl of his dreams, again!
The Dark Companion
Directed by Darrell C. Hazelrig / Georgia / 14 min.
Howard (a puppet) has an existential crisis and nervous breakdown when he, and only he, can see his puppeteer: a featureless, humanoid shape that always looms over him, that he calls his Dark Companion. His relationship with his wife and friends quickly breakdown, when no one believes him, forcing Howard to take drastic measures.
Directed by Ewan Bailey / England / 16 min.
A deaf and blind woman and a young man share a spiritual and disturbing connection.
Dinner with Holly
Directed by Josh Crockett and Daniel Sinclair / Alabama / 12 min.
A young couple has a big plan to spice up their love life when their friend, Holly, comes over for dinner.
Double or Nothing
Directed by Nathaniel Krause / California / 11 min.
Clark and Becca leave a bar after a night out with friends. When a homeless man approaches them on the street, Clark gets an idea. Adam Brody, Louisa Krause and Keith David star in this dark comedy by master playwright Neil LaBute.
Directed by Jeffrey Ruggles / California / 6 min.Things get dicey when a woman reveals to her live-in boyfriend that she’s listed him as her emergency contact.
The Golden Bowl (Der goldene Zweig)
Directed by Matthias Zucker / Germany / 25 min.
After a string of unsuccessful job interviews, out-of-work David realizes that someone is conspiring to keep him from finding employment. Based on a short story by Salman Rushdie.
Directed by Matt Smukler / California / 10 min.
Two friends desperately trying to skip town find that an overheated radiator is the least of their problems.
The Potential Wives of Norman Mao
Directed by Derek Nguyen / New York / 9 min.
Norman Mao is an overweight, socially-awkward junior businessman from Hong Kong, who at the age of 33 is still a virgin and unwed. Desperate to get him married, his parents take him on an international junket across the globe to find him a worthy Chinese wife. Narrated by George Takei.
Directed by Bernabé Rico Herrera / Spain / 12 min.
Having turned 60, Adela is living a life she never wanted. She has no children, a husband who walks all over her and, worst of all, nothing to look forward to. Then one day she has the chance to win 300,000 euros and leave her old life behind. All she has to do to get it is kick a ball into an open goal from the halfway line at half-time in a Spanish league match. Accepting the challenge, Adela starts training for the big day.
Directed by Chris Tomkins / Australia / 6 min.
A smash and grab robbery takes an unexpected twist when two thieves find themselves confronted with a haul they can’t possibly carry.
Directed by Fabrice Bracq / France / 3 min.
A man and a woman in their mid-thirties. Attractive, single day-dreamers, they cross each other a million times without ever meeting. Yet, they are meant to be together.
Directed by Paul Grellong / California / 17 min.
A little mistake turns into a living nightmare when Abby apologizes for a drunken kiss by giving the right gift to the wrong man.
Why I make Movies
Directed by Sam Frazier, Jr. / Alabama / 4 min.
A short explanation of one filmmaker’s unsatisfying life at work and home but glamorous lifestyle when he’s accepted into film festivals.
Directed by C. Scott McCoy / Tennessee / 96 min.
A history of the Antenna, Memphis’ first punk rock club, and the musical explosion it inspired.
Directed by Andrew Grace / Alabama / 63 min.
A quest to eat locally becomes a meditation on community, the South and sustainability and a story about why food matters.
My Brooklyn: Race, Real Estate and the Future of Cities
Directed by Kelly Anderson / New York / 75 min.
Director Kelly Anderson’s journey, as a Brooklyn gentrifier, to understand the forces reshaping her neighborhood. The film documents the redevelopment of Fulton Mall, a bustling African-American and Caribbean commercial district that – despite its status as the third most profitable shopping area in New York City – is maligned for its inability to appeal to the affluent residents who have come to live around it.
An Ordinary Hero
Directed by Loki Mulholland / Utah / 91 min.
The amazing true story of one white Southern woman’s courage to choose her convictions and join the Civil Rights Movement. By the time she was 19, Joan Trumpauer was shot at, attacked, and put on death row but that’s just the beginning of her remarkable journey to help change the world.
Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton as Himself
Directed by Thomas Bean / Alabama / 89 min.
Plimpton! is a feature length documentary film about the exciting life and times of Paris Review co-founder, participatory journalist, protean New York literary impresario, and friend to many, George Plimpton.
Directed by Fredrik Stanton / New York / 85 min.
Tells the inside story of the Egyptian revolution from the perspective of its principal leaders and organizers, including four Nobel Peace Prize nominees. Their success in forcing the downfall of a brutal dictatorship has changed the face of the Middle East and provided hope for millions of oppressed people across the world.
Directed by Torben Bernhard / Utah / 12 min.
In 1875, the Horn Silver Mine was discovered in the red rock cliffs of southwestern Utah. The town of Frisco was born and quickly became one of the most economically productive and notoriously violent towns in the wild West. ‘Boomtown’ blends serendipitously found audio interviews of the town sheriff and other remaining inhabitants, recorded just before their deaths, with images of the decaying ghost town in 2011.
Camino, The Journey to Santiago
Directed by Alicia Wszelaki and Matthew Nothelfer / California / 15 min.
This short documentary is a film about a pilgrim’s hike across Spain on the popular Camino de Santiago. It is an impressionistic film that creates a casual narrative about the ancient journey and what it is like during its modern revival.
Grand Fugue on the Art of Gumbo
Directed by Gideon Kennedy / Alabama / 10 min.
This film studies ‘the baroque complexity of the South’ through the musings of Mobile, Ala. native Eugene Walter, author, actor, artist, creator and chef. Using Walter’s own radio broadcasts as narration, the film takes a peek at the simple ingredients that make up the Gulf Coast and its signature cuisine, gumbo, and shows how their staggered repetition builds something wholly unique and intricately beautiful.
Directed by Helen Hood Scheer / California / 8 min.
Jean likes to make something out of nothing.
The Urban Herd
Directed by Sonja Alsofi / Washington / 13 min.
The story of how a small herd of goats in an inner city vacant lot brings joy and unity to a diverse community, and also leads to questions about the role of nature in the urban experience.
Directed by Afarin Eghbal / England / 10 min.
In a small apartment in Buenos Aires, an old woman eagerly awaits the birth of her grandchild and all the joys of becoming a grandmother. However, horrific circumstances mean that she will be forced to wait for over 30 years. Using real-life testimonials this animated-documentary raises issues of memory, repression and loss.
Directed by Iria Lopez / England / 8 min.
Jose is a teenage pig living in a Spanish town, and he is the only pig in his family. One day a new neighbor moves in next door, and Jose starts to come to terms with who he really is.
Directed by Jolie Ruelle / United States, Outlying Islands / 12 min.
A stop-motion animation exploring human relationships with anxiety. Through the use of metaphorical structure the main character demonstrates reactions and possible responses to an abstract feared stimulus.
Directed by Trevor Jones / New Mexico / 4 min.
When an emergency crash landing leaves a young girl alone in the woods, she must defend herself against herself.
Directed by Tal Arbiv / Israel / 12 min.
A marionette puppet with aspirations of glory, realizes that the way to fulfill them is not that simple when you are a puppet with feelings.
Dance Elephant Dance
Directed by Lionel Popkin / Alaska / 4 min.
Don’t Break Down
Directed by Matt Meindl / Ohio / 7 min.
Directed by Christopher Miner / Tennessee / 1 min.
Melt in the Shade
Directed by Kyojungju Kim / New York / 6 min.
Directed by Maria Pithara / Tennessee / 1 min.
Music for a Self-transforming Machine
Directed by Aaron Ross / California / 4 min.
Notes on a Revolution: Silent Version
Directed by Louis Bourgeois / Mississippi / 4 min.
Directed by Dan Inglis / New Zealand / 8 min.
Slices of Charity
Directed by Brooke White / Mississippi / 5 min.
Directed by Ronnie Cramer / Colorado / 4 min.
Thunder May Have Ruined the Moment
Directed by Peter Monro/ California / 3 min.
Directed by Candace Harralson / Tennessee / 35 min.
April defies the odds by living. But when she outgrows the school system and no adult day programming is available, her family must find a way for her to continue to thrive with meaningful work and relationships.
Drawing on a Dream
Directed by Susan Dobbs and David Rae Morris / New York / 14 min.
The colorful complexities of the late Delta rocker and artist, Duff Dorrough of Ruleville.
Growing our Own
Directed by Philip Scarborough / Mississippi / 27 min.
Each summer, high school students from all types of racial and socioeconomic backgrounds from all over Mississippi attend a nine-day seminar on race, civil justice, and community while learning the dark history of civil rights of their state, not taught in Mississippi schools.
Directed by Nathan Willis / Arkansas/Mississippi / 15 min.
The story of a small town pickle shop, its eccentric owner, and the theft of the store’s beloved icon, a giant pickle.
Directed by Ben Guest / Mississippi / 2 min.
A master pizzaiola, working in rural Mississippi, discusses his craft.
Mississippi Music Video (listed by director)
Wolf Ruffin: Mother Never Held Me
Robert Earl Reed: In The Garden
Deepak Mantena: Growing Pains
Russell Fox: Flood You Under
Ryan Frazier: Twice On Sunday
Clay Hardwick: 57LA
Directed by Casey Dillard / Mississippi / 9 min.
Movie romance isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, as a couple discovers when they scramble to find the right genre for them.
Directed by Michael Usry and Ryan Roy / Mississippi / 15 min.
An average suburban housewife tries to stop her neighbor from going on a rampage after he witnesses a gruesome attack.
The Retirement Party
Directed by Ryan Bohling and Chris Bufkin / Mississippi / 9 min.
Originally entered in the 2012 Mississippi 48 Hour Film Challenge. Shot in the style of “The Office,” this film tells the story of a superhero’s retirement party.
Directed by Glenn Payne / Mississippi / 33 min.
Elaine and Melinda are holed up in a small town diner. They’ve been on the run and are now pinned into a corner. They know they’ve been followed, but by whom they aren’t sure. Their only comfort is that they are fairly certain that their pursuers don’t know their faces either. Can they uncover their assassin’s identity before it’s too late? Everyone is a suspect.
Directed by Jordan Berger / Mississippi / 25 min.
Melanie Moore, a sickly older woman, lives alone on her couch surrounded by items she has bought off the Home Shopping Channel. When her television abruptly shuts off in the middle of a purchase she is forced to face her worst fear: life without TV.
Non-Competition films to be showcased at the festival include:
Directed by Jeffrey Travis and Dano Johnson / 2007 / 35 min.
When a mysterious visitor arrives from Spaceland, Arthur Square and his curious granddaughter Hex must come to terms with the truth of the third dimension, risking dire consequences from the evil Circles that have ruled Flatland for thousands of years.
Basically Frightened – The Musical Madness of Colonel Bruce Hampton
Directed by Michael Koepenick / Georgia / 87 min.
With fans including Billy Bob Thornton, Dave Matthews, Peter Buck, Derek Trucks, Phish, Widespread Panic, and Blues Traveler, Colonel Bruce Hampton began his career with an unprecedented six figure record deal in 1970. After releasing the worst selling album in the history of Columbia Records, he made a brave decision and continued his musical career, devoting himself to creating pure art rather than attempt any commercial success.
Directed by Mike McCarthy / Mississippi / 56 min.
Documents the making of the seven-foot tall “Tupelo Elvis” bronze statue by Mississippi sculptor Bill Beckwith, modeled on Elvis’ pose in the Roger Marshutz photograph shot at the 1956 Tupelo Fair, which was unveiled at Fairpark in Tupelo in August 2012.
DVD Blues Or Thad Calls Barton About Renaldo and Clara
Directed by Thad Lee / Mississippi / 10 min. Barton Segal sold Thad Lee a seemingly faulty copy of Renaldo and Clara, so Thad calls Barton for answers.
Directed by Rex Jones / Mississippi / 29 min.
Lecile Harris, 76, began his career as a bullrider and bullfighter, but a devastating accident in the arena at the age of 52 led him into comedy as a full-time professional rodeo clown.
Music in The Hall and Oxford Sessions
Directed by Daniel Morrow and Danny Klimetz / MississippiSelections filmed during Music in the Hall, a grass roots music video series based in Oxford, Mississippi, and Oxford Sessions, a new video series featuring recordings done unplugged and in a location unique to every artist.
Pride and Joy
Directed by Joe York / Mississippi / 57 min.
For the past six years, Joe York has traveled across the South in a state vehicle chronicling the unique people, places, and culture of America’s tastiest region. See what he found in this opus on contemporary Southern food culture, produced by the Southern Foodways Alliance.
Rebels: James Meredith and the Integration of Ole Miss
Directed by Matthew Graves / Mississippi / 58 min.
On October 1, 1962 James Meredith became the first black student enrolled at the University of Mississippi. His journey to Ole Miss began with the State of Mississippi’s denial and open defiance of the federal court’s mandate of his admission. It ended on the night of September 30th as thousands of armed protestors rioted against the U.S. Marshals, Mississippi National Guard, and U.S. Troops sent by President Kennedy. This is the incredible true story of one man’s mission for equality and a state that would do everything in its power to stop him
Directed by Joe York / Mississippi / 15 min.
To celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Oxford Film Festival, the University of Mississippi’s Media & Documentary Projects Center is teaming up with the Oxford Film Festival to create a documentary film starring 10-year-olds from the Oxford/Lafayette County community discussing the joys and trials of being 10 years old.
Mississippi Music Video (Open to Music Video Audience Award)
Michael Williams, Zebraprint by Sipsy Fires of Starkville, MS
Bill Perry, JoLynn
Zechariah Lloyd, A Change is Coming
Gina Sexton, Bye Bye Baby
Clayton Matthews Pepper, Passing By
Adam Gussow, Crossroads
Andrew Colom, PYT ft J-Money and Camden
Ole Miss Filmmaking workshop films (Various directors) / Mississippi / 30 min.
Film projects from an intensive 3½-day workshop held at the University of Mississippi in July 2012, designed to introduce amateurs to both film appreciation and the actual techniques of filmmaking.
S for Sally (work in progress screening)
Directed by Melanie Addington / Mississippi / 13 min. When her 10-year-old daughter Sally starts having difficulties, Mona sets out to help her despite no support from her husband Phil, the schools or the church.
Spotlight feature to be announced
Directed by Mike McCarthy / Mississippi / 15 min.
Created for the Tupelo Convention & Visitors Bureau, Tupelove explores the boyhood mythos of Elvis, which features little-known places in and around Tupelo, Mississippi. Narrated by Elvis’ original drummer, D.J. Fontana.
A list of additional special screenings, panels and the 2013 judges will be announced soon.