Film festival 37 is history and I am a bit sad. Even though my cat and wife will (hopefully) be happier to see me, it was almost like being in high school where all you cared about was movies. Back to the grown up world I guess.
- EVERY year, I hear a number of people say that this year wasn’t as good as past years. Why is that? Is it because our expectations ratchet up slightly just because we have seen so many great films over the years? Or perhaps there are more film festivals and so the same number of movies are being spread across a larger number of festivals. Or do we have selective memories (like High School) where we only remember the good things? While I saw a number of very good films, this was the first year that I did not see one excellent film.
- The film festival increased another 9% to 93,200 attendees. Of the 8,000 additional attendees, 5,000 was due to the added day (now we are at 12 days) while 3,000 (5%) was organic growth. Perhaps that is why our film festival is viewed as one of the 6 best after Sundance. http://www.petergreenberg.com/2013/01/21/beyond-sundance-six-standout-us-film-festivals/
- Executive Director Marcie Goodman indicated that since the Festival moved from the Cedar Lee to downtown, attendance has crept almost 700% from a base of only 14,000 in 1991. I am not aware of any other Festival that continues to grow.
- Biggest film controversy was Blondie. If you only read the write-up, it sounded like a quirky film, kind of a mix of Deborah Harry and Dagwood’s wife. In reality, it was a very dark movie and somewhat sad. So without the dark and sad movie fans in the audience, most attendees were disappointed. Personally, I enjoyed the movie but then again, I like dark.
- Cleveland Cinemas wisely published 6 Film Festival movies that will be shown at the Cedar Lee later this year.
- G-Dog – April 25 and 27. Great documentary.
- The Deep – May 8. I loved this true story about a boat that capsizes. Plan to see it.
- Renoir – Week of May 24th. One of the most popular films at the festival.
- Kings of Summer – Week of June 7th. This opening film is produced by local favorite producer, Tyler Davidson.
- More than Honey – June 12. A documentary about the disappearance of bees.
- Broken – June 26. This may have been my favorite film of the festival. Don’t miss this one.
It’s been a pleasure blogging about the festival. I look forward to seeing you at Festival 37. In the meantime, feel free to join my movie group. We head over to the Cedar Lee, Cinematheque, Art Museum and other venues on a regular basis.