2009 Online New England Film Festival
Nine young gay men are interviewed in this unconventional documentary short. All nine men come from various areas across the country (Massachusetts, California, Texas, Indiana, Florida, Michigan, & New Jersey). However, none of the men are seen on screen, instead nine straight actors portray and lip-sync their appearances. The majority supports the minority in this film, as topics range from stereotypes to coming out, civil rights, and personal opinions.
Footsteps follows and chronicles the world of Buddy Chancellor, a well-meaning but somewhat inept Bigfoot hunter. Although Buddy’s decade plus search for the elusive creature has been fruitless, his dedication and passion remains solid.
I Covered My Eyes investigates childhood notions of threat and safety by juxtaposing TV news broadcasts of tragic world events with home movie footage. The project was first conceived after seeing the televised images broadcast live on September 11 2001, and wondering what children must be feeling upon witnessing this horrific act within our own borders.
Soon after, director Paul Turano wrote a list of the tragic events he distinctly remembered witnessing on TV as a child in the 1970s and early 1980s. By adopting a child’s perspective, the film evokes his experience of learning about the outside world through news broadcasts, and the accompanying realization of threatened safety from forces outside his immediate family and community. As the sense of vulnerability grows throughout the film from abstract threats to more immediate and actual ones, the seemingly innocent and idyllic world of his childhood becomes overshadowed by an increasing awareness of its fragility and precariousness.
Virginia Lee Burton—A Sense of Place explores the life and art of Virginia Lee Burton [1909-1968], considered to be one of the most significant children’s book author and illustrators of the 20th century. For 70 years, her classic books, including the beloved Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel and the Caldecott Award-winning, The Little House, have engaged generations of readers young and old. Burton was also a talented textile designer and established a highly successful textile collective known as The Folly Cove Designers, in the Folly Cove area of Gloucester, Massachusetts. These handcrafted designs with motifs from nature rendered in bright colors were sold nationwide. Through never-before-seen archival materials, location footage and interviews with family, friends and scholars, this film reveals that Burton was a true Renaissance woman whose art and literature remain an enduring part of America’s cultural heritage.
John is the heart-rending tale of a budding infatuation that leads to a heady and emotional high school hookup that tumbles forth into a tragic and painful rejection. A young boy comes of age and finds love and companionship in an unexpected place.
White Elephants is a sensitive, slice-of-life story involving a young couple going through the normal course of their day, while coming to terms with an unexpected medical diagnosis. The film is a reflection on the unfortunate hardships that can befall any couple, the decisions we are sometimes forced to make, and the ability to support one another as best as one knows how.
Though it has been over a decade since South Africa has become a free and democratic country, human rights violations still occur. Forced evictions of informal settlements, reminiscent of those that occurred during the apartheid regime, have uprooted people from their homes and displaced them in distant locations. Alfred ‘General’ Moyo is one of these evicted persons who have become a part of the Landless People’s Movement in an effort to resist the unlawful and unconstitutional removal of settlements in the Johannesburg area by the provincial government.
Larry, a 93 year-old widower confined to a nursing home, remembers a time when he had more spring in his step. Based on real audio recordings from 2002, animator Kristen Palana uses individually painted digital images to imagine and recreate her grandfather’s first attempts to woo his beloved Roz. Set in both 1943 and 2007, Larry and Roz is a three and a half minute glimpse into one couple’s six decade relationship.