September 18-22, 2002


2002 Film Schedule

In this very personal documentary, Emmy Award-winning cameraman Tom Curran revisits his Irish-American childhood in Alaska and Cape Cod to trace how he and his siblings dealt with the early death of their father, and the complex range of emotions each faced in living up to their late father’s expectations of success. The story is poetically crafted from a mixture of super-8 home movies, remembered recreations, contemporary interviews, and verite cinematography; it suggests in stunning visual fashion how Curran’s pursuit of success masked his grief and ultimately delayed his true coming of age. Includes music by famed Irish fiddler Kevin Burke.

Director: Tom Curran
Writer: Llewellyn M. Smith
Producers: Tracy Heather Strain, Tom Curran, Myna Joseph, Jessica Lindley, Jide Zeitlin
Cinematographer: Tom Curran
Editor: Shondra Burke
Music: Todd Boekelheide


Alcatraz Is Not An Island

In November of 1969 a small group of Native American activists reclaimed Alcatraz Island in the San Francisco Bay on behalf of all Native American nations. Documentarian James Fortier’s historical documentary remembers an important era in Native American civil rights activism--and American activism in general--when optimism that real change could be effected suffused leaders from every American tribe (including Dennis Banks and a few Ojibwe who journeyed from Minnesota to participate). Narrated by Benjamin Bratt, Alcatraz Is Not An Island is an inspiring story of bravery, personal sacrifice, cultural renaissance, self-determination and Native American empowerment, a story of an era in whose aftermath we are all living.

Director: James M. Fortier (Métis-Ojibway)
Writers: James M. Fortier, Jon Plutte, Mike Yearling, Troy Johnson, Millie Ketcheshawno
Producer: Millie Ketcheshawno
Cinematographer: James M. Fortier
Editor: Mike Yearling
Narrator: Benjamin Bratt
Featuring: John Trudell

IFP MSP is proud to present a program of films exploring two old fashioned professions imperiled by a changing world: the all-American paperboy and the once ubiquitous corner barber.

World Premiere

Barberland is a poignant coast-to-coast portrait of the men who cut people’s hair for a living: the all-American barber. From explaining the significance of the stripes on a barber’s pole to the difference between black men's hair and white men's, from first haircuts to worst haircuts, from the ancient history of barbers to the story of when stylists began replacing barbers, just lean back in your chair, stare straight ahead, and let the men talk. Barberland is the Liano brothers’ look at a profession in danger of disappearing into Americana. Includes interviews with Twin Cities barbers Raymond C. Newton Jr. and Dick Kramer, and a trip to the last company in the U.S. to make barber poles, The William Marvy Company in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Directors: A.D. Liano, Robert Liano
Writer: A.D. Liano
Cinematographer: Robert Liano
Editors: Eric Harvey, Rich Santoli
Music: Tim Eggert

Preceded by

From acclaimed music video director Mike Mills comes Paperboys, a beautifully photographed peek into the lives of six young boys who deliver the newspaper in Stillwater, Minnesota. Shot in lush 35 mm format, this documentary gets up with the alarm, climbs on the bicycles, straps on the paperbag and sails through the early morning midwestern streets right alongside the kids who toil in this fading line of work. After the papers have been delivered, the boys talk about their lives, what they’ll do with their paper-route money, and where they think they’ll end up. A nostalgic look back at life looking forward.

Director: Mike Mills
Producer: Ned Brown, Katherine Kennedy, Julia Leach
Cinematographer: Joaquin Baca-Asay
Editor: Haines Hall
Featuring: Tyler Rowan, Brandon Kindshy, Nick Judkins, Donny Foster, Greg Gonsior, Andrew Merton

IFP MSP showcases two films about government and society: one a close-up look at the unsettling militarization of local police forces, the other a wide survey of how government might more responsibly direct our ever-growing society.

Bike Like U Mean It

Bike Like U Mean It is a charming portrait of bike activists in Austin, Texas; people who ride their bikes for transportation and defiantly eschew cars. Outspoken and iconoclastic, they actively promote not only "human powered" forms of transportation, but an alternative vision of cities, urban design, lifestyle, and culture. Packed with interesting insights from thoughtful people, Bike Like U Mean It is a way for one growing city--Austin--to discuss its growth problems with another--Minneapolis--facing the same critical questions: How many roads? How many trains? How many bike paths?

Director-Producer: Rusty Martin, Susan Kirr
Cinematographer: Matt Listiak
Editor: Caroline Mithoff
Music: DJ Rufus
Preceded by

Urban Warrior

Do you have a picture of the SWAT team as the good guys who come in to save the day? Local filmmaker Matt Ehling’s thought-provoking new documentary Urban Warrior shows how an army-style police force equipped with troop carriers, gas masks, automatic rifles, and stun grenades is unable to observe the same civil rights when making an arrest as two officers with badges, caps and mere side arms. What’s more, Urban Warrior explains how the use of these units is ever expanding to cover ordinary police work. Through numerous interviews, dramatic recreations and never-before-seen footage from the Seattle riots, Urban Warrior takes a close-up look at an alarming social phenomenon invisible to most citizens.

Director-Producer: Matt Ehling
Associate Producer: Karen Manion
Cinematographer: Matt Ehling
Editor: Matt Ehling


After fleeing their Eastern European homeland and immigrating to America, Nik and Luda have little going for them other than their unusually strong love for each other. Desperate for money, they accept absurdly demeaning jobs working for an experimental Public Works project. The strange, absurd work they find themselves doing is guaranteed to intrigue you and make you laugh; it may even remind you of a job you’ve had. With Kafka-like allegory and unexpected twists of fate, writer-director Mia Trachinger’s debut is a fascinating and absolutely original love story about falling out of love. Bunny was a 2001 IFP Spirit Award Nominee and the Maverick Spirit Award winner at Cinequest 2001.

Writer-Director: Mia Trachinger
Producers: Rebecca Sonnenshine, Mia Trachinger
Cinematographer: Patti Lee
Editor: Bob Brooks
Music: Jonathan Segel
Production Design: Annmarie Roberts
Cast: Petra Tikalova, Edward Dratver, Elizabeth Liebel, Eugene Alper, Brian Morri, Christopher Fairbanks

IFP MSP presents a program which looks at opposite ends of the spectrum of contemporary battles over equal rights for gay people: one in Kansas a struggle to pass legislation promising equal protection under the law, the other in San Francisco a look at gay couples who want to be parents and the legal and social hurtles they face.

Daddy and Papa

Daddy and Papa examines the growing phenomenon of gay fatherhood and its impact on American culture. Through the stories of four different families, native Minnesotan filmmaker Johnny Symons explores the challenges facing gay men who decide to become dads; from surrogacy and interracial adoption to the complexities of gay divorce and the battle for full legal status as parents. Daddy and Papa also brilliantly articulates the unraveling of stereotypes on both sides as gay parents find themselves driving station wagons and straight parents suddenly find they have a gay son and a grandson. A thought-provoking look at some of the vanguard gay fathers who are breaking new ground in the ever-changing landscape of the American family.

Director-Producer: Johnny Symons
Co-Producer: Lindsay Sablosky
Cinematographers: Gail Huddleson, Johnny Symons, Andy Abrahams Wilson
Editor: Kim Roberts
Music:Janice Giteck, Glenys Rogers, David Conley

Preceded by

Shades of Gray

Shades of Gray is a documentary that focuses on the lives of five gay people living in Lawrence, Kansas and their struggle to add the words 'sexual orientation' to that city’s list of banned discriminatory policies. Director Tim DePaepe’s film deftly lays in the social context of a contemporary battle for equal rights in small-town America: including religious bigots, the special difficulties of coming out in a community where everyone knows you, and the surprisingly enlightened views of some small town citizens. A look at the rearguard battle for equality in the small towns and countryside of America.

Director: Tim DePaepe
Producer: Edward P. Stencel
Co-Producer: David-Michael Allen
Cinematographer: Tim DePaepe, Edward P. Stencel
Music: The Rainmakers

Go Tigers!
Sponsored by IFC and AT&T Broadband

Go Tigers! spends a season with the high school football team in hardworking Massillon, Ohio, where from cradle to grave the town worships the Tigers like football was religion. Director Ken Carlson takes us into the pep rallies, Main Street parades, blue collar player homes, beer-soaked victory parties and the vaunted football locker room--ground zero for prayer, humiliation, and stunning pressure--to pose the question, "When has a community gone too far in identifying itself with its sports team?" When the Massillon schools run up against their perpetual lack of funding, voters must approve a school levy associated with the success of the football team or coaches and teachers will lose their jobs. Everyone is counting on the Tigers to save the town.

Writer-Director: Kenneth A. Carlson
Producers: Sidney Sherman, Kenneth A. Carlson
Cinematographer: Curt Apduhan
Editor: Jeff Werner
Music: Randy Miller
Featuring: Dave Irwin, Danny Studer, Ellery Moore


Hell House

From documentarian George Ratliff comes a new film about Hell House, a haunted house produced each Halloween by the Trinity Assembly of God Pentecostal Church in Cedar Hills, Texas. What makes this haunted house special? The horrors for these Bible-belt fundamentalist Christians aren’t from another world, they’re from this world. A pregnant girl has a gory abortion and goes to hell, a gay man dies of AIDS and is taunted by demons, a teenager takes drugs at a rave and is dragged down to hell. Ratliff’s film examines with keen insight the relationship between the lives of the townspeople who act out Hell House’s horror scenes and the scenes themselves; in some cases, the close connection between art and reality is downright frightening!

Director: George Ratliff
Producer: Zachary Mortensen, Selina Lewis Davidson
Executive Producer: Paige West
Cinematographer: Jawad Metni
Editor: Michael LaHaie
Music: Bubba and Mathew Kadane

Kaaterskill Falls
2002 IFP Spirit Award Nominee

Mitchell and Ren are getting out of Manhattan for the weekend; the professional young couple are going to a cabin in the Catskills to drink some wine, relax, and try to get pregnant. But when they impulsively pull their Volkswagen Beetle over to pick up a hitchhiker their weekend, as well as their relationship--and maybe even their lives--take a different turn. This debut feature from filmmakers Josh Apter and St. Paul native Peter Olsen recalls Bergman in its fascination with the metaphysical and Roman Polanski’s Knife in the Water for its intrigue. Winner of the Critics’ Jury Prize at the 2001 Los Angeles Film Festival and a 2002 IFP Spirit Award Nominee.

Directors: Josh Apter, Peter Olsen
Writers: Josh Apter and Peter Olsen with Hilary Howard, Mitchell Riggs, Anthony Leslie
Producers: Josh Apter, Peter Olsen
Cinematographer: Peter Olsen
Editor: Josh Apter
Music: Steve Tibbetts
Cast: Hilary Howard, Mitchell Riggs, Anthony Leslie


The Last Big Attraction

Shot on a shoestring in Michigan, The Last Big Attraction is Wolverine director Hopwood DePree’s refreshingly sweet and uniquely midwestern answer to the Hollywood screwball comedy. He plays Leed VanderWal, a 25 year-old slacker who carves wooden clogs for tourists at his father’s stale roadside attraction, Windmill Island--a 17th-Century Dutch farm village. Leed dreams of the good life in Detroit, but instead finds himself dressing up in ridiculous costumes and hanging out with a candle-dipping stoner while trying unsuccessfully to impress his new girlfriend’s preppy friends; what’s more, the clog-crazed girl from Wisconsin is after him, and the family windmill is losing money. Time to call in the mannequins!

Writer-Director: Hopwood DePree
Producers: Michael Hagerty, Dana DePree, Dori DePree, Kori Eldean, Tammy Kerr
Cinematographer: Simms-n-Simms
Editor: Robert Hoffman
Music: Gigi Meroni
Cast: Hopwood DePree, Christine Elise, Victoria Haas, Richard Speight, Jr.

World Premiere

Last Seen

Jennifer Langsam has disappeared. She was last seen five days before Homecoming on the school racing track, running, head back, arms spread wide; then suddenly she seemed to just ascend into the ether. There is no evidence of foul play. Her backpack was found in the Biology Lab, containing her notebook and several books about Joanna Southcott, a 17th-century mystic and prophet with an apocalyptic prediction. As for Jenny herself...she is gone. Last Seen was filmed in the Twin Cities and includes many actors familiar to local theatergoers. Director Eva Ilona Brzeski was recently named one of Filmmaker Magazine’s 25 New Faces of Indie Film.

Writer-Director: Eva Illona Brzeski
Producer: Holiday Reinhorn, Rainn Wilson
Cinematographer: Eva Ilona Brzeski, Elisabeth M. Spencer, Michael David Novak
Editor: Eva Ilona Brzeski
Music: Victor Zupanc
Cast: Amanda Detmer, Sally Wingert, Joe Minjares, Peter Schmitz, Barbara June Patterson, Barbara Kingsley, Claudia Wilkens, Michael Ooms.

Live and Let Go--An American Death

Plus Short - Jon Nowak's Playing Again

Sam Niver fought in World War II, was a devoted family man, a respected newspaperman and beloved civic leader. In this moving documentary made by Niver’s son, documentarian Jay Niver (with Jay Spain), we learn of Sam’s losing battle with cancer and his desire to end his life in the same way he lived it, with dignity. This powerful document of Sam’s final days thoroughly articulates the issues associated with doctor-assisted suicide, the current state of the right to die movement in this country, and the problems one faces in choosing to die with dignity. An issue familiar to many in the abstract, Live and Let Go puts a very real, very human face on the story of life drawing to a close. (Content may offend some viewers).

Writer: Jay Niver
Producer: Gretchen Niver
Cinematographer: Jay Spain
Editor: David Iversen

The Misanthrope

The Misanthrope chronicles the hilarious story of Artemis, an owly, middle-aged Chicago actor who drinks too much, teaches sixth grade full-time, and doesn’t suffer children easily. Soon after he is rejected for a part in a professional staging of Moliere’s "The Misanthrope," Artemis is confronted by his school principal with the choice to either resign or take over directing incorrigibly troubled kids in the school play. Moliere’s bilious lines sound strange coming from such young children, but Artemis is focussed on showing how much better he does things than the rest of the detestable species. This gem was the winner of the 2002 South by Southwest Special Jury Award for a Narrative Feature.

Writer-Director: Allen Colombo
Producer: Rachel Davis
Cinematographer: Scott Thiele
Editor: Eric Kutner
Music: Dennis Wolkowicz
Cast: Ali Farahnakian, Jennifer Joan Taylor, Albena Dodeva, Lisa Velten, Torrence W. Murphy, Matt Dwyer, Marshall Bean

Photos to Send
Golden Gate Award, Audience Award--San Francisco International Film Festival

In 1954, world renowned photographer Dorothea Lange traveled to County Clare, Ireland on assignment for LIFE magazine. She took 2,400 photographs, creating a lasting record of a rural way of life that was fast disappearing. In her directing debut, Irish-American director Dierdre Lynch retraces Lange’s footsteps, traveling the country roads to visit many of the same people who Lange met nearly a half century ago. Her film uses Lange’s photographs to unlock the poignant, somehelvetica humorous, somehelvetica painful memories of another era, of ceili dancing and Gaelic hurling, friends lost to death, people lost to America. Photos To Send is a sensitive and moving portrait of the countrymen and women who chose to stay on their land--no matter what the price. Winner of the Golden Gate Award and Audience Award at the San Francisco International Film Festival.

Writer-Director: Dierdre Lynch
Producers: Pam Rorke Levy
Cinematographer: Dierdre Lynch
Editors: Matthew Reichman, Dierdre Lynch, Dee Watt
Music: Martin Hayes with Dennis Cahill


The Poor and Hungry

A black and white "digiflik" demonstrating the high quality of regional filming in places other than New York and Los Angeles, The Poor and Hungry is an authentic tale of the Memphis underground as told through the eyes of resident Memphis director Craig Brewer. The film’s main character Eli is involved in a clever plot stealing cars and breaking them down, since "most of the time...the parts are worth more than the whole thing." The same could be said of Eli’s circle of friends, an interdependent band of lovable rogues who hustle and drink for a living. When Eli listens to the music of a beautiful cello player whose car he is forced to steal, he begins to hear the song of the siren, the song of himself, the song of the Memphis streets. Voted Best Digital Feature, The 2001 Hollywood Film Festival.

Writer-Director: Craig Brewer
Producers: Craig Brewer, Walter Brewer, Erin Hagee, Jodi Hagee, Wanda Wilson
Cinematographer: Craig Brewer
Editor: Craig Brewer
Music: Jonathan Kirkscey
Cast: Eric Tate, Lindsey Roberts, Lake Latimer

Purple Haze
20th Anniversary Screening sponsored by Mix 104.1

Purple Haze recounts the story of Matt Caulfield, a young law student at Princeton who returns to Minnesota during the tempestuous summer of 1968 to face the draft, his father and his ever-changing world. When Minnesota producer-director-writer team Victoria Wozniak and David Burton Morris made Purple Haze in 1983, the 1960s were barely 10 years distant, so their story doesn’t suffer from the stale 60s nostalgia of later Vietnam films. Purple Haze is set in Minnesota (some scenes were even filmed on the West Bank, the actual nexus of the Twin Cities Hippie Movement), which makes the now-familiar story of draft resistance new again to local audiences. Add nostalgia for early 80s local filmmaking, a brilliant soundtrack featuring Jimi Hendrix, Jefferson Airplane and Steppenwolf, an incredible final shot and you have Purple Haze, a great film ready for another look.

Director: David Burton Morris
Writer: Victoria Wozniak
Producer: Thomas Anthony Fucci
Cinematographer: Richard Gibb
Editor: Dusty Nabili
Music: Jimi Hendrix, Youngbloods, Country Joe and the Fish, The Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, Sly and the Family Stone, Jefferson Airplane, Procol Harum, Del Shannon, Steppenwolf, Cream, The Animals, Bob Devorezen/Ted Ellis, The Intelligence.
Cast: Peter Nelson, Chuck McQuary, Bernard Baldan, Susanna Lack, Bob Breuler


Part road picture, part family drama, this tense contemplation of the nature of human frailty and resiliency focuses on the confrontation between a headstrong teenage girl and her mother’s menacing boyfriend. The story’s heroin Alex takes her younger sister Sara away from their unsafe home by bus to the equally unsafe streets of New Orleans, where they hope to find protection with their estranged father. Riders is a sumptuously rendered story of three women trapped in America; one an innocent child, one a jaded adult, and one a conflicted adolescent emotionally poised between the two, struggling to protect her family fromdanger while also finding her own way. Directed by Sundance Feature Film Lab fellow Doug Sadler was also named one of Filmmaker Magazine’s 2001 25 New Faces of Indie Film.

Writer-Director: Doug Sadler
Producers: Jim Chance, Daniel Bickel
Co-Producers: Linda Farwell, Doug Sadler
Associate Producers: Samantha McCall, Catherine Dent
Executive Producers: Leslie Westbrook Frigerio, Tom McCall, Chris Sadler
Cinematographer: Rodney Taylor
Editor: Affonso Goncalves
Music: Eliot Houser, Michael Webb, Craig Wright
Cast: Don Harvey, Bodine Alexander, Sarah Stusek, Jane Beard


sponsored by Mix 104.1

In his first feature film, writer-director Bobby Sheehan creates a lachrymose fictional every man protagonist, Mr. Seed, who walks up to ordinary people and begins a dialogue by saying nothing more than "I’m dying." The responses people give are as profound and insightful as they are surprising: a junkie, a rabbi, a transvestite, and an old wise man named Sonny stun the viewer with insights about living and dying, loving, faith, art, children and fame. As Mr. Seed traverses deserts, mountains and glaciers--representing the internal and external landscape of America--the viewer becomes lulled into a state of profound thoughtfulness in this affecting love letter to life and all the reasons for living it.

Director: Bobby Sheehan
Producers: Bobby Sheehan, Alex Albanese
Executive Producers: Bobby Sheehan, Sara Feldmann Sheehan
Cinematographer: Bobby Sheehan
Editor: Alex Albanese
Cast: John Michael Bolger

Soft for Digging
Plus Short - Ryan Olson’s Joy’s Journey

Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the woods! Soft for Digging is the story of an elderly man who wanders out into the deserted Maryland woods near his cabin to search for his runaway cat. Alone and disoriented he stumbles onto a mysterious child and a bizarre giant alone in the woods. Fifteen minutes into this fabulously innovative psychological thriller the story’s protagonist speaks the film’s first word of dialogue: "Murder." Writer-director JT Petty--one of Filmmaker Magazine’s 25 New Faces of Indie Film--shot Soft for Digging on 16 mm color film for a mere $6,000; a mainstay on the recent festival circuit, the film stands as a testament that a hugely successful and entertaining film can be made with very little resources.

Writer-Director: JT Petty
Producers: JT Petty, Jeffrey Odell
Cinematographer: Patrick McGraw
Sound: Matthew Polis
Music: James Wolcott, Sophocles Papavasilopoulos
Cast: Edmond Mercier, Sarah Ingerson, Andrew Hewitt, Kate Petty, David Husko



From the hard scrabble plains of Texas to the manicured lawns of Connecticut, from the rebel-sympathizing Ozark countryside to the housing projects of Washington D.C., this new documentary from Jeffrey Blitz follows eight American teenagers out to win the National Spelling Bee. Using the competition as a dramatic backdrop, Spellbound peers into the lives of these eight youngsters as they work tirelessly to transform themselves from ordinary kids into driven competitors and perhaps champions. Through their comic, nail-biting and often heartbreaking tales, we are given an inspirational look at class in America and the endurance of the American dream...one nerve-wracking word at a time.

Director-Producer-Cinematographer: Jeffrey Blitz
Co-Producer: Sean Welch
Editor: Yana Gorskaya
Music: Daniel Hulsizer


Plus Short - Mitchell Rose's Moderndaydreams

A brand new documentary about farming, faith, and the resilience of the human spirit, Kirsten Tretbar’s Zenith was filmed in 1999 over a period of 5 months in two small Kansas towns: Zenith--a wheat and cattle farming town of only 30 souls--and neighboring Stafford, pop. 1,500. The story focuses on The Great Plains Passion Play, and the farmers, cowboys, ranchers, retirees, women and children who put on make-up and stage this outdoor drama about the life of Jesus. In many ways, their own life stories mirror the stories they act out. This film is dedicated to the people of Zenith and Stafford, Kansas, whose courage, faith, and humor inspires Zenith.

Writer-Director: Kirsten Tretbar
Producer: Lesa Paulsen
Cinematographer: Kirsten Tretbar
Editor: Derek Goodall
Co-Producers: Pamela Calvert, Tracy Huling, Eric Tretbar
Music: David Scheibner, James Studer

Late Night Screenings
IFP MSP is proud to introduce the Twin Cities to three wild and amped up movies perfect for your late night state of mind.

World Premiere


Shot on location in Chicago, Lauretta Tagli’s Crushed is a raw improvised comedy about an ad agency Christmas party held on the night the agency is forced to shut down. Twenty of Chicago’s top performers (including Seth Meyers of subsequent Saturday Night Live fame and Stephanie Weir of Mad TV) followed a script for the first half-hour of the movie; after that, each was free to use their wit and extensive improv experience to decide the fates of their characters. The result: a raucous and unpredictable movie depicting 24 outrageous hours in the fictional lives of the crazy people who make your TV and newspaper ads. Don’t touch that dial!

Director: Lauretta Tagli
Producer: A. J. Hassan
Cinematographer: Bill Newell
Editor: Amy Harvey
Cast: Seth Meyers, Stephanie Weir, Jordan Simonson, Susan Messing, Martin Garcia, Joseph Nunez, Kristen Entwistle, Butch Jerinic, Judy Fabjance, Pat Shay, Jill Benjamin, Lisa Lewis, Noah Gregoropoulos, Tamara Federici, Genevra Gallo, Robert Dassie, Sam Albert, Francis Callier, John Bonny, Andrew Eninger, Jean Augustyn, Lenny Schmidt


From Nashville comes a music-filled romp hilarious and grotesque enough to rival any ever told by John Waters. Existo (former Minnesotan Bruce Arntson) is a performance artist and former revolutionary who has been ten years institutionalized and undergone a chemical lobotomy; now he has returned to save our world. This unstable genius, along with his cadre of bohemian dregs (including the late Jim Varney), will of course use art as his weapon to wage a war of resistance against the hypocritical forces of decency and traditional family values. But the guardians of moral rectitude are not about to let this rebellion go unchallenged; they fight back with the oldest trick in the book: vapid blonde pop singer Penelope. Will Existo be able to keep his libidinal weaknesses in check, stay on his penis pogo stick, and turn the power of performance art to his advantage? Stay tuned loyal compatriots!

Director: Coke Sams
Writers: Bruce Arntson, Coke Sams
Producers: Clarke Gallivan, Peter Kurland
Cinematographer: Jim May
Editor: Scott Mele
Music: Bruce Arntson
Cast: Bruce Arntson, Jackie Welch, Jim Varney, Gailard Sartain, Mark Cabus, Jenny Littleton, Mike Montgomery


Lethal Force


After a hitman’s son is kidnapped by Mal, a crime lord, old friends will be forced to do deadly kung fu chops on each other. Into the mix add Big Bertha, Psycho Bowtie, three African Hitmen from Wisconsin and a host of other slit-eyed bad dudes, dames and daggers. From the Washington D.C. area, Alvin Ecarma’s Lethal Force is a tongue in cheek no-budget zinger directed in the Hong-Kong style, drenched in fake blood and ready to throw every hilarious but amazing action move in the book at you, and then throw the book at you too!

Writer-Director: Alvin Ecarma
Producer: Kent Bye
Cinematographer: Eric Thornett
Editor: Ronald Edwin Hunkler
Music: Jim Williamson
Cast: Frank Prather, Cash Flagg, Jr., Andrew Hewitt


Gabriel Rhodes’ Anna is Being Stalked
Anna is freaked out by the sickly-looking man who follows her everywhere, but it’s nice he’s around when she needs a hand with the groceries.

Paul Danauser’s I’m Just a Tree
What are the consequences when a fly and a dog start lusting after each other? Find out in the fiery conclusion to this local animated short.

Daniel Cavey’s Dear XXX
A boy holed up with his rock and roll record collection dreamily laments the lost exhilaration he once felt for the music.

Jon Nowak’s Suspension
A superbly-photographed parable about a man on a bridge, last words, and being at the end of your rope.

Elizabeth Skadden’s Sam, Age 11
In this quasi-documentary, Sam hauntingly reflects on being a girl, being eleven and feeling so much older than she is.

Lisa Paclet’s Lines No. 2
A one shot introduction to a coffee shop and its characters: follow each character as their insignificant relationships with each other unfold.

Joshua Allard’s I Think I Like It Now
A thoughtfully conceived local short about love’s delicate balance of power, and the quick way that balance can shift.

Eva Sak’s Family Values
A documentary about a couple who own a home, work hard, and love each other; Becky and Donna are two hardworking lesbians who make the mortgage by cleaning up crime scenes.

Jeremy Plumb’s Garff vs the Chips
Get ready to be hit by a wall of attitude: chip munching giants, reverse smoking and plenty of kick-ass tunes. From Minnesota, in French, with English subtitles!


Cine-Magic’s Saving Human Lives
A hilarious short shot in ditches between St. Paul and St. Cloud in some of the coldest weather ever. In English with English subtitles.

Charles Bowe’s Wrath of Achilles
Set to the music of Grant Hart, a lonely runner brings a desperate message across a landscape from a Fritz Lang film.

Jessica Nordell’s Know What, December
A poem to Winter in Minnesota, complete with orange sunrises, blue air and shocking white light.

Cindy Stillwell’s The First Story
A beautiful experimental film that articulates the feeling of being out on the Great Plains: the long trains, the overland trucks, wheat, and the wide blue sky.

Amy Learn’s Wanna Play
An animated short using the found sound of two children who believe that their bed is sailing the seven seas.

Gregory Kennedy’s Drowning Lessons
A sister and brother compete for the affections of the cute new tenant upstairs, who loves him more, and is blood thicker than lake water?

Anne Paas’ The Greatest Show on Earth
The circus, in black and white, Fellini style, complete with midgets, clowns and Coney Island. This show will truly be one of a kind.

Annette Solakoglu’s Border
An allegorical encounter between two men on opposite sides of a fence, and a goose.

Trevor Sands’ Inside
A man suffering from multiple personality disorder faces a psychiatric evaluation--hopefully there’s eight chairs in his counselor’s office.

Robert Slane’s The Fine Line Between Cute & Creepy
Chloe and Mary have each just been approached by daring young men, Chloe might be hearing wedding bells, Mary’s calling the cops.

Brooke Keesling’s Boobie Girl
An animated ditty about a young girl who wishes she had boobs; careful what you wish for!