Reel it in
Independent filmmakers and festivals make February a good time to enjoy the great indoors
You won’t find them on Fandango or in the multiplexes, but the region’s independent filmmakers, festival organizers and DIY art house reps have a lot to say about the wide world outside of Hollywood—and they have a rich lineup of winter events.On Point
There were already major, long-standing dance film festivals like the Dance On Camera Festival in New York and Dance Camera West in Los Angeles, but Rosie Trump, a dance professor at University of Nevada, Reno, noticed they were missing something.
“I wasn’t seeing artists like myself being presented,” she said. She wanted to see more work by local filmmakers and more work by women. So, in 2010, while living in Houston, she started the Third Coast Dance Film Festival.
“Whenever dance is taken off of the stage and captured in film, all these possibilities become available,” Trump said—manipulation of speed and time, for example, jump cuts instead of fixed viewpoints, the ability to undo the laws of gravity with a camera. In some cases, this all adds up to having the freedom to mix up reality and fantasy. In Ravendoe—the festival’s first Reno-made film, by Erica French and Shaila Holihan—the two dancers play animals meeting in a forest.
Third Coast Dance Film Festival screens at 6 p.m., Feb. 9 at the Nevada Museum of Art, 160 W. Liberty St. Tickets are $5-7. Organizers recommend purchasing tickets in advance, as the festival has sold out in recent years. For tickets, visit www.nevadaart.org. For info, visit thirdcoastdancefilmfestival.wordpress.com. To see the trailer, visit vimeo.com/187416351.Flicks in Fallon
On the night of a concert, if you try to enter the Barkley Theatre with a beer in your hand, a friendly usher will instruct you to abandon it at the door. This venue, located inside Fallon’s Oats Park Art Center, is too classy to tolerate sticky floors. During the less frequent movie screenings, which attract a dedicated but smaller crowd, however, they’ll let you bring your drink right in.
The programming leans toward vintage films but also shows newer work.
“Sometimes we do thematically related series,” said program director Kirk Robertson. “We do ’50s sci-fi. We do film noir. We’ve done later sci-fi.” There’ve also been romantic comedies and showcases of “little-known or overlooked films” by particular actors. Once it was Nicole Kidman. This month, it’s Burt Lancaster.
The theater is primarily a music venue, and Robertson said that when he shows films there, “The sound is very good because we run it through the house speaker system.”
The art center’s galleries are open during film showings, and the bar opens an hour before show time.
The two remaining showings in the “Three With Lancaster” series are The Swimmer, Feb. 10 and Atlantic City, Feb. 17. Both films start at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 or $7 for members. For information, visit www.churchillarts.org.Art house DIY
Artemisia Moviehouse isn’t exactly a movie house. It’s an iteration of the former Great Basin Film Society that’s been showing classics, animation, foreign films and the like in Good Luck Macbeth’s 50-some-odd-seat theater for a few years.
The group has established a few fun traditions for film lovers.
“We introduce the movie, talk about directors, certain things to look out for, little insights, without giving away the plot or the ending,” said organizer John McCarthy. And sometimes the hosts offer insider trivia. Before a recent screening of a French comedy, Mon Oncle, which features a pack of street dogs, viewers learned that the director eventually found homes for his orphaned canine actors.
Other things you should know about Artemisia: “If a film is short, we’ll show cartoons,” said McCarthy. Admission is payable only by cash. And there’s free popcorn.
Artemisia Moviehouse shows films at Good Luck Macbeth Theatre Company, 713 S. Virginia St., most Sundays at 6 p.m. Admission is $7, $6 for students and seniors, and $5 for members. The next film is Phantom Boy, March 5, a French/Belgian animation with Audrey Tautou. For more information visit http://artemisiamovies.weebly.com/.Tasty pairings
When Nate Ashley was 6, he’d gather the neighbors in the yard, make popcorn and show a movie.
Much later in life, after cultivating a taste for art-house films and craft beers during a stint in Austin, Texas, he and his friend Paul Taylor began holding movie-and-beer pairing events in ever-larger venues.
First they hung a sheet to use as a projection screen and invited about 10 friends for a showing of Jurassic Park and a keg of Great Basin Icky—“because there’s a dinosaur beer.” They’ve shown movies at non-movie venues like Craft Wine & Beer and Hub Coffee Roasters and branched out from beer to other libations—pairing Karate Kid with sake, Can’t Buy Me Love with rose.
“We have done everything from simple, backyard cinema to pop-up dinners,” said Ashley. “Early on we had a lot of silly pairings. … We had an event called ’Action Packed.’ We combined the movie Commando with New Belgium’s Ranger and cap guns. It was 2011.”
Now, Ashley and Taylor, a.k.a. Films On Tap, program films for Artown and are preparing to host the two-day Films On Tap Winter Film Festival. Ashley said that the fesival will screen six limited-release, festival-circuit films that have not yet shown in Nevada theaters.
Films on Tap presents a two-day film festival at the Nevada Museum of Art, 160 W. Liberty St. Feb. 25-26. A $100 ticket, $90 for NMA members, includes an all-access pass, beer, wine, small bites and admission to an afterparty. A one-day pass is $50, or $45 for members. For tickets and information, visit filmsontap.org.From page to screen
Five women in a church book club in Carson City decided to read some work by international authors. They read a Brazilian novel. Then they watched the film version. Then they launched a film festival in the church, drawing about 400-500 viewers the first year.
The group connected with Friends of Carson City Library, a nonprofit that could help secure grant funding, and moved to a larger venue. Now, Carson International Film Weekend is a three-day showcase for films from around the world and close to home.
Among the goals, said co-organizer Linda Bellegray, are showcasing cultural diversity and human resilience. Also, “it has to be a film that shows a significant degree of film craft,” she said.
This year’s bill features three international features—a French/Chinese film called Wolf Totem, an Indonesian drama, The Look of Silence, and the Italian classic Cinema Paradiso—and six short films by UNR students.
Also on the bill is journalism professor Kari Barber’s first feature-length picture, Struggle and Hope, a documentary about all-black towns in her native Oklahoma that are struggling to survive financially but have an unbreakable community spirit and a blues music scene that makes it hard not to nod your head and tap your feet along to the movie. The film has already won an award for cinematography and is headed to Paris soon on the festival circuit.
Carson International Film Weekend takes place Feb. 16-18 at Carson City Community Center, 851 E. Williams St., Carson City. Admission for all films is free. For information, visit Carson City Library's Facebook page.