Local Sightings Film Festival 2010
Local Sightings 2010
OCTOBER 1, FRIDAY BEGINNING AT 9PM
Big Opening Night Party
Party like it’s 1995! Join us for our 15th Anniversary Bash and Local Sightings Opening Night Party. Come dressed like it’s the year of our founding, 1995, and dance the night away to tunes from that bygone era courtesy of DJ Crispo.
We’ll be serving a special homemade birthday cake, as well as treats from Healeo and Cupcake Royale. And Sweet Iron Waffles will be on hand to provide you with delicious fresh cooked waffles from their mobile food stand (so bring your cash).
And if that’s not enough, there will be sumo wrestling! Bring your favorite nemesis for one-on-one bouts hosted by MC Grant Cogswell. Celebrity bouts TBA!
Special guests include conceptual artist and poet A K Mimi Allen:
THE HERMITAGE @ Northwest Film Forum
A K Mimi Allin
Join conceptual artist and itinerant poetess, A K Mimi Allin, after the screenings in Cinema 1 for a look at The Hermitage, a hand-built, mini-yurt made of hemlock and canvas. This cozy dwelling will serve as Allin’s shelter when she makes her own hermitage in 2011. Allin will, thereafter, year after year, until she’s 90, take one, month-long, solo hermitage on any fallow or wild land she can find in the US or abroad. The land, in most cases owned and offered by friends and supporters, puts The Hermitage somewhere between the known and the unknown, making it a common endeavor with artist and audience working to nourish the collective spirit. It recognizes the artist’s reliance on the public and prioritizes the needs of the artist, both spiritual and physical. Fallow land, fertile future. Allin’s first hermitage takes place in January in Southwestern Mexico. The following, in April, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada.
Inside this nomadic, little dwelling is a scriptorium with handmade poetry scrolls. The scrolls are penned with poems drawing from various wandering poetry traditions. Feel free to open and read them. And, if you happen to have fallow land (off the beaten trail and away from society), consider putting it up for a month-long hermitage. See details below.
Drinks provided by New Belgium Brewery, Ninkasi Brewery, Tieton Ciderworks, Coppola Winery and DRY Soda.
Screenings & Events
OCTOBER 1, FRIDAY AT 7PM
(Zach Weintraub, Olympia, 2010, 79 min) Employing inventive storytelling, sensitive performances and deadpan humor, Olympia filmmaker Zach Weintraub shows he’s a talent to watch with this wry and touching portrait of youthful romance and potential. In the waning twilight of a magical summer, Weintraub masterfully observes seventeen year old Isaac, his older brother Ben and Ben’s coy ex-girlfriend Lila as they pass their leisurely summer while fumbling through their triangular friendship. An impromptu road trip to visit the world’s largest hedge maze tests the brother’s closeness as they vie for Lila’s affection. Cleverly capturing the spontaneity of the last summer at home, Bummer Summer is one of the most stylized films to come out of the Northwest in recent memory.
“The film moves accross the screen with the lightness of a summer cloud.” —The Stranger
Father Lover Friend
(Lindsay Foster, Seattle, 2010, 8 min) An inexplicable chemistry unites a pair for nine days on the road. Starting out in Slab City, CA, commencing at her birthplace of Seattle, WA, they explore the dynamics of attraction.
(price includes admission to opening night party)
OCTOBER 2, SATURDAY AT 5PM
Two Indians Talking
(Sara McIntyre, Vancouver, BC, 2010, 97 min) This smart, funny drama explores the conflicting opinions of two First Nations men as they prepare to set up a roadblock. Each man wants fiercely to do the right thing, but struggles with the question, “When you do something for the right reasons, does that make it the right thing to do?” Adam (played by Twilight star Justin Rain) is a university-educated Native of the Seventh Generation, raised to believe that knowledge is the Indian’s best tool for survival. Nathan (Nathaniel Arcand) is a high school dropout whose dreams have been consistently crushed over the past twenty years. On the eve of their nation’s roadblock, the cousins prepare for the impending battle in a communal apartment they paint with heartfelt conversation and humorous debate about life, culture, women, dreams, politics, poverty and hope for the future—if any.
Unreserved: The Work of Louie Gong
(Tracy Rector, Seattle, 2010, 14 min) In March 2009, Pacific Northwest artist and activist Louie Gong began merging Native Coast Salish art with pop culture icon Vans, creating custom skate shoes that represented the complexities of multiracial cultural identity, something he refers to as “walking in two worlds.”
(Lisa Jackson, Vancouver, BC, 2010, 6 min) On a summer day in the 1950s, a native girl watches the countryside go by from the backseat of a car. A woman at her kitchen table sings a lullaby in her Cree language. When the girl arrives at her destination, she undergoes a transformation that will turn the woman’s gentle voice into a howl of anger and pain.
OCTOBER 2, SATURDAY AT 5PM
(Mary Katzke, Anchorage, 2009, 84 min) On a chilly Alaskan night in the summer of 1980, a family camping trip turned into a tragedy when 10-month old Gwendellin Bradshaw’s mentally distraught mother threw her on the campfire. Given a 50-50 chance of surviving, Gwen managed to recover and live to be an adult. Twenty-four years later, she is learning how to cope with her physical and psychological scars and believes that finding her mother is central to her own healing. Her journey is an emotional path that leads her to discover her own beauty and purpose in life, providing inspiration to us all to find compassion for those struggling with mental illness.
(Jason Gutz and David Johnson, Tacoma, WA, 2010, 23 min) Explores the life and dreams of David Bowdle, a disabled musician confined to his bed in Soap Lake, Washington.
OCTOBER 2, SATURDAY AT 7PM
William Never Married
(Christian Palmer, Seattle, 2010, 84 min) A tragicomic excursion with a romantic edge into the dark side, William Never Married follows William ‘Vince’ Cone, a budding alcoholic in his late 20s, and his relationships with three different women: his mother Eleanor, a freewheeling inebriate who insists on living on the streets; Julie, a 25-year-old waitress and the object of William’s unrequited crush; and Ingrid, a psychiatry student. As William attempts to rescue his mother from increasingly desperate and harrowing situations, his romantic yearnings, propelled by mysterious events, erupt into chaos.
“Cinematographer Ryan K. Adams deserves special mention for bringing a fresh eye to Seattle locations.” —Seattle Weekly
OCTOBER 2, SATURDAY AT 7PM
Drawn To Moving
A Program of Animated Short Films
(Mike Denman, Seattle, 2009, 5 min) An animated short about Kyle Brown, who works in the German Creative Services Department during World War II.
(Clyde Petersen, Seattle, 2010, 1 min) The Brontosaurus family enjoys lunch with the Stegosaurus and prehistoric moths.
(Timothy David Orme, Boise, 2010, 6 min) A collaborative experimental/comic animated poem.
The Man Who Shot the Man Who Shot Lincoln
(Drew Christie, Seattle, 2010, 5 min) An animated interpretation of the strange life of Boston Corbett.
Nicer to Have One
(Celena Adler, Seattle, 2009, 4 min) An animated documentary that explores the experience of being a twin.
(Britta Johnson, Seattle, 2010, 7 min) Castaways perform strange tasks on a deserted shore. Are they gods, or have they been driven mad by their predicament?
Nathan and Nordrich
(Noah Dorsey, Portland, 2009, 13 min) A young neurotic is reunited with his brothers, conjoined twins, in this dry and quirky cartoon.
(Joanna Priestly, Portland, 2010, 4 min) A witty commentary on ignorance, idiocy and our over-reliance on spell check.
(Shelley Jordon, Portland, 2009, 3 min) An animated painting that explores issues of vulnerability and risk, and how each new experience is filtered through our perceptions of previous ones.
Celluloid Heroes Never Really Die
(Salise Hughes, Seattle, 2010, 6 min) What a celluloid hell might be like…but celluloid heroes never feel any pain.
OCTOBER 2, SATURDAY AT 9PM
A Program of Documentary Shorts
(Cassidy Dimon, Katie Gregg, Seattle, 2010, 10 min) A look into the underground world of guinea pig fanciers.
(Adam Monahon, Tacoma, 2010, 3 min) A short observation of the Tacoma tide flats and the industry within.
(Christy X, Seattle, 2010, 10 min) Nightly an estimated 300 to 500 teenage prostitutes work the streets of Seattle (actual numbers are unknown). Rescue documents the underfunded effort of city officials who dedicate their lives to providing a means of escape. Without donor support, the piloted Prostituted Children’s Rescue Fund and the children they serve are in immediate jeopardy.
I Saw U
(Maile Martinez and Lane Stroud, Seattle, 2010, 8 min) A Seattle filmmaker explores stories of dreamers who seek connections through the classifieds.
(Lucy Ostrander, Bainbridge Island, 2009, 15 min) The “Woman Behind the Symbol,” Fumiko Hayashida, the subject of a 1942 photograph that became the iconic symbol of the Japanese American incarceration, fights on to ensure such an injustice will never happen again.
(Gretchen Burger, Seattle, 2010, 5 min) Boxing coach Cappy Kotz explores what it means for boxer to find and maintain cover.
Alo! 86th Street
(Jana Bolotin, Bothell, 2009, 10 min) A semi fictionalized autobiography about the experience of a young contemporary post Soviet Jew. Shot on 16mm film, with national archival footage.
(Matthew Brown, Seattle, 2010, 3 min) A holocaust survivor visits a memorial for the first time.
(Mike Attie, Seattle, 2010, 19 min) A humorous touching and surreal look into a VA hospice unit.
Nous Deux Encore
(Heather Harlow, Portland, 2009, 17 min) A remembrance of true love.
(Eric Maxen, Doug Adler, Portland, 2009, 10 min) Celebrating perfect poultry and the people who love them.
(Matthew Brown, Seattle, 2010, 3 min) A montage of lush Spanish wonder fills this sumptuous short.
OCTOBER 2, SATURDAY AT 11PM
Eyes In The Dark
(Bjorn Anderson, 2009, Sammamish, 2010, 78 min) If Seattle had a Blair Witch Project, Eyes in the Dark would be it. This independent feature follows a group of college co-eds on a weekend cabin getaway in the Washington Cascade foothills. Eyes in the Dark combines the characters’ compulsive self-documentation and laid-back humor with the raw terror they uncover after crossing paths with an ancient evil. The filmmakers blended the improvisational talents of the actors with beautiful but brooding locations to create a vision that plays on the fear of the unknown. Set in a fictionalized area of the Cascade Range with a long history of legends and mysterious disappearances, the film quickly transports the audience to a place of excitement and terror.
Occurrence off a Country Road
(Alex Walsh, Puyallup, 2010, 14 min) A blood-covered woman shows up on the doorstep of a mysterious elderly couple, asking for help, but soon discovers that not all is as it seems and they are all playing a dangerous game of cat and mouse.
OCTOBER 3, SUNDAY AT 5PM
(Vernon Lott, Leiston, ID, 2010, 90 min) It can happen to anyone, at anytime. You make your best attempt to write a brilliant poem, or The Great American Novel. To you, it’s genius, but at some point you realized they’re just words, and awful ones at that. Such was the case for filmmaker and former aspiring writer Vernon Lott, who, inspired by the discovery of a cache of his old poems, created this outstanding debut documentary about the best of the worst writing in the history of the craft. Featuring interviews with David Sedaris, Margaret Atwood, George Saunders and Nick Flynn, among others, Lott careens from New York City to Los Angeles in search of the answer to the film’s existential question: what makes writing good or bad? Thankfully, no one takes himself or herself too seriously—particularly Mr. Lott.
OCTOBER 3, SUNDAY AT 5PM
A Program of Comedic Short Films
(Aaron Anderson, Seattle, 2010, 5 min) A man is sent back in time with a mystical orange.
The Strange Case of Dr. Victor Von Dictor
(John Woods, Vancouver, BC, 2009, 12 min) A snake-oil salesman finds money, romance and intrigue when his “miracle” tonic cures the Mayor’s ailing daughter.
Scene from an Office
(George Kloss, Seattle, 2010, 6 min) Mistreated by her boss, ignored by her co-workers, a secretary’s day does from bad to worse by running a simple errand.
(Blair Dykes, Vancouver, BC, 2009, 10 min) When two slacker scientists experiment with an excess of riboflavin, it creates a rift in the space-time continuum.
When Elvis Met Nixon
(Dave Gostisha, Federal Way, 2009, 7 min) The untold story behind one of the most infamous meetings of modern times.
The Day My Parents Became Cool
(Steve Edmiston, Des Moines, WA, 2009, 16 min) When a 1000-year comet streaks across the night sky, every adult on the planet instantly desires to “be cool”—just like their teenaged children!
Los Obreros (The Day Laborers)
(Craig Packard, Seattle, 2009, 6 min) The story of Pedro, a Mexican day laborer, who will do just about any kind of work.
(Brendan O’Neill Kohl, Seattle, 2010, 10 min) A short film about bicycle messengers, day laborers and outsourcing gone wild.
OCTOBER 3, SUNDAY AT 7PM
(Koi Walker, Seattle, 2010, 74 min) In 2009, then-Mayor Greg Nickels was a shoo-in for re-election. However 2009 was a surprising year for politics in Seattle. There was a massive snowstorm that paralyzed the city, putting the mayor’s reelection in jeopardy. From the ashes of Nickel’s failures rose seven mayoral candidates who followed their hopes and dreams as they raced for the city’s top job. Political experience is negligible—or non-existent; financial resources are slim. Out of a pack of underdog candidates, who will emerge as the next mayor of Seattle? Can passion and determination be enough to overcome the raw power of money and establishment? It’s a story Seattle knows well, but with Citizen Mayor we get to know it better.
The Odd Fellows Out
(Aileen Imperial and Katrine Behrend, Seattle, 2010, 25 min) A portrait of controversy, community and change surrounding the historic Odd Fellows Building on Seattle’s Capitol Hill.
OCTOBER 3, SUNDAY AT 7PM
A Program of Music Videos
Belly of June
(Clyde Peterson, Seattle, 2010, 4 min) Mixing a sweet live performance by Horse Feathers with stop motion bees, honey is everywhere.
Laizzes Les Bon Temps Rouller
(Clyde Peterson, Seattle, 2010, 4 min) A film of titanic proportions, animated paint on an Ikea-dresser constructs a multi-plane, music video for Northwest rockers Quasi.
Blessed Be, Honey Bee
(Allison Bohl, Seattle, 2010, 4 min) A music video for Grand Hallway’s Blessed Be Honey Bee. Two young girls battle the elements of an imaginary storm of epic proportions.
There is a Wind
(Matt Brown and Nathan Miller, Seattle, 2010, 6 min) Music video for Sub Pop’s The Album Leaf involving a Corvette, a single prop-plane, a wheelchair, a birthday party and one kid’s very vivid imagination.
(RK Adams, Chris Pugh, Seattle, 2010, 12 min) Interviews with Francis McKee and Eugene Kelley are interspersed with live performance footage from the Sub Pop 20 Festival concert.
(Sean Pecknold, Seattle, 2010, 14 min) A short behind-the-scenes/live documentary featuring fourteen minutes of footage from Robin Pecknold’s recent solo tour with Joanna.
(J. Baab, Eli Rosenblatt, David Bestock, Seattle, 2009, 3 min) Shmuli dreams Klezmer musicians inundate his tiny apartment.
Home: The Concert Film
(Captain Chambers, Seattle, 2010, 6 min) Documentary music video project of the band SeaStar.
Christopher Francis & Son at the Bread Factory
(Kenneth Piekarski, Seattle, 2010, 4 min) Olympia band Christopher Francis & Son perform live at a Seattle house/DIY venue, the Bread Factory
OCTOBER 3, SUNDAY AT 9PM
With Or Without You
A Program of Short Films
Orpheus & Eurydice
(Morgan Dusatko, Seattle, 2009, 6 min) Orpheus searches the underworld for her lost love in this modern day telling of the classic Greek myth.
Live Henry Live
(Alec Whittle, Shoreline, 23 min) A man struggles with the absence of creativity and the toll it takes on his family.
(Brice Habeger, Douglas, AK, 2010, 4 min) On the eve of their 40th wedding anniversary, a couple discovers the truth behind their long lasting marriage, and the truth is, one of them isn’t listening.
(Nathan Williams, Seattle, 2010, 11 min) Melissa investigates clues that suggest there may be another woman in her boyfriend’s life.
(Austin Andrews, Vancouver, BC, 2010, 15 min) Unfolding over fifteen minutes in a single shot as a couples walks back to the house they once shared, Frog looks at the sharp turns our lives take in youth, the fragile nature of human dependence and the difficulty of saying goodbye to a person with whom we have shared so much.
(Laura Jean Cronin, Seattle, 2010, 14 min) Misguided girl, murky boundaries, tragic consequences… Welcome to One Night.
OCTOBER 4, MONDAY AT 7PM
(Bill Swenson, 1986, 56min., Super-8 > U-Matic) From 1982 to 1986, seven Seattle filmmakers banded together to from an independent production company/collective called Neoteric Productions. With a guerrilla sensibility toward filmmaking, they used the newly emerging Focal Point and 911 Media Arts Centers as a locus for their creative endeavors. In Darkness Rising, the lives of a janitor and a dancer get intertwined and much more complicated. Joe (George Catalano), a down-on-his-luck poet trapped in the life of a janitor, intrigues Ruby (Meagan Murphy) enough to begin a flirtatious relationship. Ruby has some secrets of her own. Their push and pull romance comes to a head when they spend a weekend on the coast and the absurdity of existence once again catches Joe and Ruby off guard. By filming on Super-8 and using a lot of natural lighting, Darkness Rising imbues its story with an easy-going sincerity and improvisational style of storytelling. The simplicity and directness of the production allows the film a freedom to incorporate narrated sequences with Joe illustrating his existential miasma with poetry (written by Howard J. Friedlander) while a video montage (using archival footage) and a very 80s musical score (by Gordon Doucette and Tor Midtskog) similarly add a style unique to its era during a dream sequence and long shots of city and rural landscape.
“Long conversational takes and naturalistic dialogue—the street noise seeping in—recall Cassavetes, and the would-be lovers’ weekend getaway to an Olympic Peninsula beach is charmingly sparse…Darkness Rising is a reminder that there was an ’80s indie cinema before that term existed, before sex, lies and videotape and Miramax.” —Seattle Weekly
plays with three shorts also produced by Neoteric Productions:
9-1-1 Arts Resource Center Public Service Announcement
Tonight (Horns of Lure) Music Video
Second Coming Preview
OCTOBER 4, MONDAY AT 7PM
Adults In The Room
(Andy Blubaugh, Portland, 2010, 85 min) A remarkable debut feature from Portlander Andy Blubaugh, named one of Filmmaker Magazines “25 Faces to Watch” in 2007, Adults In The Room is set against the backdrop of Portland Mayor Sam Adams’ teen sex scandal. Blubaugh creates a Möbius Strip of a movie, balancing documentary footage of Portland’s response to the Adams affair with an incredibly personal story of Blubaugh’s own teen-age romance with an older man. The film blends filmed interviews, making-of footage and dramatization, exploring how his relationship at age fifteen has influenced him ever since, as both a lover and a teacher. Always approaching what is usually a black-and-white issue with an open mind, Blubaugh compares his own experiences with the views of professionals, including Stranger Sex Columnist Dan Savage, social workers and other teachers.
(Matthew Brown, Seattle, 2010, 4 min) A wondrously beautiful portrait of men in nature set to the soundtrack of anti-gay hate speech.
OCTOBER 4, MONDAY AT 9PM
Objects In The Mirror
A Program of Short Films
The Thomas Beale Cipher
(Andrew S. Allen, Seattle, 2010, 10 min) A famed cryptographer is on the trail of a legendary treasure, only it seems now powerful forces are on his trail too.
Ringside Seats at Victory Point
(Marshall Langohr, Seattle, 2009, 23 min) This is not the end of the world, but you can see it from here.
(Shawn Telford, Seattle, 2009, 10 min) Two friends, take a late night ride on the monorail, though the neither journey nor destination are what they expected.
(Curtis Taylor, Seattle, 2009, 10 min) Exploring contemplation and perception, Church Weather follows a woman on her way home, who hears the radio broadcast of a sacred choir, triggering her repressed awareness of the connected, hidden mechanics of all things.
(Chris Lennox-Aasen, Ryder Thomas White, Burnaby, BC, 2010, 15 min) In what they believe to be an empty city, A and B have their paradigms radically shifted by the entrance of a third, C, whose intrusion brings about the slow shattering of A and B’s stark yet familiar existence.
(Heather Ayres, Seattle, 2010, 13 min)Betty finds connection and conversation when a doctor convinces her to read her patient file, opening a journey that unravels the heart as she finds the pieces of herself worth holding onto.
Old Town Diary
(Brian Lindstrom, Portland, 2010, 15 min) A hope-filled short about Portlanders struggling with mental illness and addiction. A true collaboration with its subjects, Diary intersperses real-life testimonials with a dramatic narrative of a composite character (played with authenticity by Everclear’s Art Alexakis, a recovering addict) created by participants in a local community engagement program.
OCTOBER 5, TUESDAY AT 7PM
Walk Right In
(Lawrence Paros, Seattle, 2010, DigiBeta) Forty years on, one hundred fifty disadvantaged men and women explore issues of race, diversity and personal identity at Yale Summer High School. Created as part of the “war on poverty,” the Yale Summer High School brought underprivileged kids from across the nation to the Yale Divinity School during the 60s. In 1968, as American cities and campuses were rife with protest, racial rioting and civil disorder, a small group of educators created a living laboratory in the problems and promise of the American democracy. A compelling and deeply personal narrative of education and individual transformation, Walk Right In recreates the summer of ’68 through first hand accounts, following students from their moment of selection and their arrival on campus to the culmination of the program, reminding us of the importance of inclusive and effective impact the program had across generations.
OCTOBER 5, TUESDAY AT 9PM
A Meditation in Color and Light
(Jon Behrens, Seattle, 2010, 5 min) The latest hand painted and optically printed film from Seattle’s finest practitioner of the form.
(Rob Tyler, Portland, 2010, 3 min) A quiet symphony of circulating air.
Hand Grenade Eyes
(Kevin Jacobs, Olympia, 2010, 5 min) Two mad men on a tugboat discover a mysterious sea creature that posses explosive powers.
(Ryan Holbrook, Tacoma, 2010, 3 min) Footage of grandparents (circa 1960) combined with shots of the house the filmmaker grew up in explore the feelings of nostalgia and lament about the inevitable decay that time brings.
(Malic Amalya, Seattle, 2010, 18 min) Both an homage to, and a polemic on, nostalgia for Americana.
Sing Swan Song
(Samantha Ruth and Adam Huggins, Burnaby, BC, 2010, 7 min) A visual/aural montage centering around the conflicting and symbolic relationship between dreams and what we refer to as reality, physical manifestation and illusion, as well as a belief in the direct connection between the projected image and the collective unconscious.
(Nicholas Redding, Olympia, 2010, 9 min) A folk film—that is, a film based on the narrative structure of original folktale, the material and visual aesthetic of folk art, and the acoustic texture of folk music.
(RK Adams, Seattle, 2010, 4 min) A dreamy meditation on becoming, shot on a digital pinhole camera.
Left and Leaving
(Jessie Smith, Seattle, 2010, 9 min) Shot in Berlin, this experimental dance cinema short features colorful industrial rubble, a bright orange tutu, lots of thrashing movement, dirt and a bit of blood.
I was Born Here
(Alice Gosti, Seattle, 2010, 2 min) Part of a series of self-referential videos, this short film was shot in the park in front of the hospital where the director was born.
(Ben Rapson, Seattle, 2010, 6 min) A cinematic poem about being caught between childhood and adulthood, told through dance, music and narration.
(J. Arthur Sunday, Lacey, WA, 2009, 6 min) A lonely traveler finds himself plagued by a haunting fisherman bent on distracting him from his journey.
(Ram Ganesh, Bellevue, 2010, 1 min) A series of unexplained disasters happen inside of Mark’s home.
Solving the Quantum Riddle: Interrupted
(Michael Kleven, Seattle, 2010, 1 min) Five haikus combined with stark video portraits scratch the surface of the persona exploring our private stream of consciousness.
(Ian Wood, Seattle, 2010, 1 min)Direct animation circular freak out!
OCTOBER 6, WEDNESDAY AT 8
West coast premiere!
Director Peter Sillen and other guests in attendance
Screening at the Moore Theatre
I Am Secretly An Important Man
(Peter Sillen, Seattle, 2010, 85 min) Peter Sillen’s documentary portrait of the guru of grunge, Steven (Jesse) Bernstein undulates like a spoken-word performance. Known in the Seattle art and music scene as one of the most influential voices of the late twentieth century, Bernstein was a poet and performance artist who recorded with Sub Pop Records and inspired Kurt Cobain, Oliver Stone and many other writers, filmmakers and grunge and punk musicians. Bernstein performed stories and songs about society’s fringes—angry, tender and sometimes corrosively humorous portraits of drifters, junkies and ex-cons. His mentor, William Burroughs, said of his writing, “The work is deeply felt…Bernstein has been there and brought it back. Bernstein is a writer.” Join us for this special West Coast premiere of the film, screened at the Moore Theatre where Jesse once shared the stage with Burroughs.
“Director Peter Sillen cuts seamlessly from archival material—color- saturated footage of Bernstein ambling down his fire escape—to grayer, present-day Seattle, as Bernstein recites poetry over Steve Fisk’s jazz loops or those who knew the poet speak about him in voice-over. Interviews with contemporaries such as Bruce Pavitt of Sub Pop, Slim Moon of Kill Rock Stars, as well as Bernstein’s family and friends, range from the requisite mythmaking (he was the “godfather of grunge,” “a real outsider”) to stranger moments: an ex talking about the seizures he suffered says the doctors thought Bernstein’s brain was too big for his skull, his two grown sons playing a marimba together. But the film is at its best when Bernstein is on-screen or at least audible, his snarling, nasal monotone and acerbic verse as naggingly charismatic as it must have been then.” —The Stranger
“[Director Sillen] brings considerable empathy to Bernstein’s oddball life—without seeking to explain it or fill in all the gaps.” —Seattle Weekly
Tickets are $8/Film Forum members, $10/general.
Purchase tickets online >
Tickets also available at the Paramount Theatre box office