LRFF, Day 4: Fade to Black | Rock Candy

Sunday, May 20, 2007

LRFF, Day 4: Fade to Black

Posted By on Sun, May 20, 2007 at 8:22 PM


"I would like to tell you to enjoy this film, but you cannot enjoy this film." 

                                              -Takeharu Watai

I should have been prepared.  However transparent the agenda, however one-sided the imagery, however unfair the tactics, Little Birds crushed me.  The film is a blunt instrument.

It took some time to recover.  When I sat down for Mississippi Son immediately afterwards, I still felt smudged and washed-out.  Wrung dry.  That film's cornball hard rock soundtrack, ultra-fast tracking shots, jarring cuts, and cut-rate visual effects were too much for me, no matter the importance of the subject matter.  I fled.

A couple hours later, after food and silence and about twenty minutes of Winged Migration on television, I came back for If You Succeed, Augusta Palmer and Chris Arnold's short feature on a doomed restauranteur.  Culled from hundreds of hours of footage, it viscerally evokes the desperate struggle of entrepeneurship, and the toll it takes on a young family.  Palmer and Arnold are hard at work on a doc about Palmer's father, legendary Little Rock music critic Robert Palmer, and the website for the film is just lovely, reminiscent of Jessica Yu and Agnes Varda.

I hit the road after that, so no coverage of the awards ceremony.  I'm beat, but at the same time invigorated.  At home, crickets are still chirping in the Fayetteville film community, but there's cause for hope.

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