True/False Day 2 – Saturday

I started with breakfast at a great little healthful joint, the Main Squeeze, and then it was over to the Artisan to see the start of the panel Me and My Shadow (subject vs. subjectivity) but I had to cut it short to make it to Jeff Feuerzeig’s The Devil and Daniel Johnston. This is the kind of film that really doesn’t need to do much because the material is so rich, but then it goes beyond rich to fully intense with creative sound, use of archival footage and tons of audio. The film is being distributed by Sony Pictures Classics and opens theatrically March 31st.

I met Paul Lovelace and Sam Douglas at Sundance in January. Their film, The Holy Modal Rounders… Bound to Lose premiered at Slamdance. So when I saw it fit into my T/F sked I was on it. The film played at the Forrest Theater in the Tiger Hotel. I didn’t have a ticket so I got in the wait list line as #27. But…eventually they let us all go in. And the place was pretty full too! The film tells the story of two musicians who meet in the 60s and form a strong bond playing music together for over 40 years. The music itself plays second fiddle (pardon the pun) to Peter Stampfel and Steve Webber’s intense friendship and working relationship.

You gotta love film festival patrons. They can make a lot of stuff happen by providing the right resources. The Filmmaker Fete honored the T/F filmmakers with a dinner hosted by Sycamore restaurant. The food was delicious and it was a hot ticket with a chance for the enthusiastic patrons to rub elbows with a filmmaker or two.

On the way out the door Festival Co-Director David Wilson stopped to tell me, AJ, Eugene and Rick and Matt from Homemade Hillbilly Jam (at least I think that’s who was there) that his documentary game show, Gimme Truth!, was going really great. So off we all stomped to The Blue Note to see for ourselves. Gimme Truth! put festival filmmakers Grace Lee (Grace Lee Project), Magnus Bejmar (Smiling in a War Zone) and Mark Lewis (Standard of Perfection: Show Cattle) to the test, as they had to guess if locally made short docs were true or false. Doppler Dave Schmidt who provided a real game show feel to the whole thing hosted the eve.

I was pleased to find in the T/F catalog, Untitled Camp Film by Bradley Beesley and Sarah Price. It wasn’t until the film was introduced that Fest Co-Director Paul Sturtz could tell the audience of the name of the film, Summercamp!. Oh, Summercamp!. What a joy of a movie. It’s almost pocketable… The film follows campers through their 3 weeks away from home. I get irritated when filmmakers bank off the fact that kids say the darndest things. Summercamp! doesn’t wait for kids to be just plain cute, but instead shows them as real little people experiencing life through the freedom of childhood, but being pretty adult at the same time.

True/False couldn’t be happy with just movies and parties, no no no! So it was back to The Blue Note for a full on concert. T/F film participants The Refugee All Stars were supposed to open for Of Montreal. But after the INS lost their paperwork they were unable to get out of Sierra Leone to play the fest. So Curtis Eller and Strawfoot filled in. The crowd was mostly college kids dancing and blowing off steam on a Saturday night. It surprised me how open they were to all the different types of music. Curtis Eller’s song about Buster Keaton seemed to be stumping nearly every twenty something girl standing around me.

It was really time for bed, but I headed over to the super secret after party anyway. Turns out it wasn’t so secret. The place was full of folks diggin’ Kim Chi (the 2 girl DJ duo who sing in Korean) and hittin’ the open bar until late into the night. I left about 2 am, but I heard the cops showed up around 3. I miss all the fun.

Day 3 is going up shortly. I’m actually already home writing this. The festival was such a vigorous workout I barely had time to blog. But, as it was a veritable docu-blogger symposium you can check out more news with Pete Bland at the Columbia Tribune, AJ Schnack at All These Wonderful Things, and Eugene Hernandez on indieWIRE.

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