I started the last night with the shorts program Our Strange Connections.
LITTLE HORSES: A divorced father competes for his son's love with the new man in his ex-wife's life.
ABET: A young woman witnesses a crime, and watches a victim bleeding. This is supposed to be the same as when she was squishing caterpillars earlier. Sorry, I don't quite buy that, but it was pretty gross watching her squish caterpillars.
L TRAIN: Grim determination and a hard life, meet harder life and greater determination.
BYSTANDER: Set in a mirror homonormative world, a boy is a victim of a hate crime for choosing to be open about whom he loves. And his former friends have to decide whether they will be bystanders or stand up for him.
THE LAST VIRGIN: When your girlfriend won't go all the way, there's always your friend's hot (and drunken) mom.
And finally, the night and the festival ended with a rocking good time with GIRL WALK//ALL DAY. A feature length dance and music video, shot guerrilla style all over New York and set to the mash-up album All Day by Girl Talk (aka Greg Gillis.) The story is pretty simple--the girl (Anne Marsen) is bored in ballet class, so she breaks out and heads to New York, dancing on the Ferry the whole time. There she dances all over the city, meets like-minded dancers, is pursued by a creep (John Doyle) and pursues a gentleman (Dai Omiya.) Since it's shot guerrilla style, the bystanders of New York become characters, and the best parts are the reactions. Or rather, the rare times when the jaded, stoic New Yorkers actually do react. Director Jacob Krupnick was there, and in the Q&A he remarked how he was surprised how difficult it was to get people to react. But when they did, it was magic. At one point they got a whole subway car dancing. One of the best parts (and the only dialogue in the whole movie) was when a Hasidic Jew asks her, "Why are you dancing?" She replies, "Because I'm happy!" To which he replies, "You should always be happy!" Completely spontaneous, and yet it sums up the entire movie.
Of course, the audience was encouraged to dance along with the movie, but in the Roxie there's only so much room you have in the aisles and you don't want to block other people's views. So there were some people dancing along, and that was pretty cool. Although I didn't get up myself, I like to think I did my part with my patented seat-dancing moves--wiggle my butt and wave my arms and feet around while staying firmly in my seat. Who cares, it was tons of fun, and a great way to send off the festival with good feelings all around.
Now it's time for me to rest up a bit.
Total Running Time: 151 minutes
My Total Minutes: 267,693