2015 Online New England Film Festival
Annie, fed up with how she is treated at home, runs away. She does however, make sure to write to her family, providing explanation of her departure, and the grand visions of the life in front of her.
Luthier: One who makes stringed musical instruments, as violins or guitars. (Merriam-Webster)
This is the story of two men who find friendship through building musical instruments.
Liz documents the profound personal journey for survival of a young woman named Liz Leddy. Homeless at 13, Liz lived a tragic life of despair, raging behavior and a brutal fight to survive on the streets. Living in abandoned buildings on the waterfront of Portland, Maine, she battled alcoholism, an eating disorder, being raped, beaten, and a dark world of chaos. Eventually, her self-loathing led to daily thoughts of suicide. With raw grit and extraordinary conviction, Liz surrendered the struggle and found peace when she turned her fight to the boxing ring. She proved to be her own heroine in finding enough courage and strength to say yes to a new way of living.
Filmed over four years, we follow Liz as she reclaims her life from desperation, to a place of love, forgiveness and hope. Her dreams manifest as she becomes a favorite for competing in the 2012 Olympics…. the first time in history women have had the opportunity to compete in the Olympic sport of boxing. Liz’s story is an inspirational tale about a human being who awakens and relentlessly rises up through hard knocks, addiction, wins, losses, physical abuse, emotional abuse and self abuse to become an exceptional athlete and spiritually aware woman.
In 2001, Alex Truesdell started an independent non-profit called the Adaptive Design Association (ADA) with the mission that all children (and eventually adults) with “disabilities” would get the customized equipment and adaptations they need to participate fully in the community and achieve their full developmental, social, and academic potential.
Since then, ADA has established its home base in New York City, and has inspired numerous Adaptive Device Centers (ADC’s) around the globe. But the struggle to meet an often un-recognized need has continued to rage on. Unfortunately, in the United States, most children in need of support are either un-supported by their families, school systems, and/or communities.
Among the Giants is a short documentary film which tells Adaptive Design’s story through the tales of a few fascinating and courageous individuals, all of whom have had some relationship with ADA. The film challenges viewers to question the very nature of notions such as “disability”, and “capability”, as well as the unfortunate reality of “accessibility” in the United States.
Directed in 2009, the film continues to serve as a teaching tool around the world; it is ideal for classrooms, students, and educators of all age, as well as simply anyone who wishes to learn a little bit more about what it means to work with one’s hands, be creatively fearless, and question one’s own limitations.
One Year Lease documents the travails of Brian, Thomas and Casper as they endure a year-long sentence with Rita the cat-loving landlady.
After the sudden passing of his wife, Stan (played by Richard Kind of Spin City, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Pixar’s Inside Out), ignores his overwhelming grief only to be faced with the unavoidable What Cheer? Brigade, a 20-piece punk marching band that floods his world with boisterous, interminable song.
Capturing the unsettling essence of a Twilight Zone episode and the sci-fi tone of a Ray Bradbury story, this reflective short film casts a bleak look at how technology can backfire at bringing us closer together, unintentionally creating more isolation and loneliness than ever before, sometimes leading to harrowing and tragic results.
Hope is a successful photographer. Introverted and quiet, her demeanor plays in stark contrast to her glamorous work environment. When she learns that her sister Ella has passed away, Hope is stunned… until she begins to receive text messages from her. Are they for real? Using art as a tool for recovery, Hope begins to accept the fatality of death. She will evoke her sister’s presence – alive and in memoriam.
Trail angels have become an integral presence along the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) and other long distance hiking trails across the country. In general, trail angels perform random acts of kindness and assistance (often referred to as trail magic) to thru-hikers along remote stretches of trail where access to water and other amenities are limited or non existent.
The trail magic they perform often occurs unexpectedly and without warning in the form of fresh water, food, shelter, or a car ride to the nearest town. They know how important it is for thru-hikers to complete the trail in its entirety. Therefore, they understand the hardships of hiking a long distance trail and often appear when a thru-hiker needs help or encouragement the most.
For the past ten years, Apple has been setting up a large tent equipped with a wood burning stove in a remote corner of Nantahala National Forest in North Carolina. By mid November, southbound thru-hikers, who started their journey on top of the 5,268 foot peak of Mount Katahdin in Maine, will have walked about 2,000 miles by the time they reach Apple’s shelter just 111 miles from the southern terminus located in northern Georgia. As if appearing out of nowhere, Apple’s shelter offers a brief respite for thru-hikers before they forge ahead to reach the summit of Springer Mountain in Georgia.
For one week in November, White Blaze follows Apple as he supports weary southbound thru-hikers along the Appalachian Trail by offering them food, water, and encouragement to reach the end of the famous 2,178 mile wooded footpath. White Blaze examines the brief encounters experienced between thru-hikers and one trail angel.