Last night the literal walls of The Brick were metaphorically torn down with an awesome display of artistic revelry from the participants of THE FILM FESTIVAL. Yes, it was our Opening Night Cabaret and Like Party or Whatever, and if we were charging money we would have sold out like three times over. As it was we just crammed dozens of people into the space to watch 18 sweet preview performances and trailers by festival participants.
Of course, I personally spent most of my time in the lobby, at the bar, explaining to people that our fridge was being annoying and the beer wasn't as cold as it should be - but they still bought beer! Let that stand as an incisive parable for our times. The fact is, however, that though I heard much, I didn't actually get to physically, visually SEE most of the acts, meaning that I would like to call upon you, the Reader (preferably if you were actually, you know, present at the event) to fill in my perceptions with observations and precious memories of your own.
The rundown went approximately as follows:
1. Introduction: Robert Honeywell regaled the crowd with a bigoted defense of theatre in the face of encroaching technology, at the end of which he bled from the mouth.
2. Paranoid's Guide to History: A delightfully acerbic live lecture (with film) of the Seven Habits of Highly Paranoid People. (Watch the trailer.)
3. It's Gonna Be A Cold Night: More bleeding, this time in the name of zombie-like promotion of said show.
4. Unloosened and Root: Short film trailers by David Dixon, which since I could only hear I can only say so much about, but there was a dirty joke in there somewhere... (Watch the trailer.)
5. What I Took In My Hand: Remember Charles Lindbergh - the revered one who flew the Atlantic, as opposed to the Nazi tool who became President in The Plot Against America? Well here he was!
6. Kill Me Like You Mean It: An audio recording of Stolen Chair's absurdist noir, to be performed as a live radio drama...
7. Horrible Child: The trailer. Fine, I'll admit it, I was outside getting some air because it was hot. But you can see it on YouTube!
8. Code Alpha: Yes, I missed this one too. I'm a regrettable human being. But it's awesome! (Watch the trailer.)
9. Q&A: The Perception of Dawn: An improv scene in which the cast's attempts to answer audience questions about a fake film (part of which was shown) degenerated into a horrible brawl. No blood this time, though.
10. Birthtaint: In this film trailer a man with a freakishly oversized head seeks redemption in the company of a girl with horribly scars. Inspirational!
11. You Bet Your Life LIVE!: Lisa Levy demonstrated a round of the film trivia edition of her live game show, in which it was learned that you can't judge a movie by the type of person who buys tickets to it (or something like that).
12. Tod and I: A live puppet performance followed by a trailer. That little puppet boy breaks my heart, seriously.
13. Death at Film Forum: A film trailer featuring one of the contestants of a Project Runway-style film contest, in which a peeled orange got thrown at a concrete wall to scintillating effect. (Watch a different trailer with some of the same stuff in it.)
14. The Stubborn Illusion of Time: A freaky film/theatre hybrid in which what happens on the screen is reflected by what happens onstage, both of which featured the same ghostly actors doing ghostly things in a ghostly way. (Watch the trailer.)
15. Bring Me the Head of John Ford: A dizzying montage of classic western film clips played over a live actor's monologue, which reminded everyone why westerns are so awesome. (Watch the trailer.)
16. I, Object: Film trailer highly inspired by silent physical comedy, which featured a variation on the whole pulling-a-quarter-out-of-a-kid's-ear trick, which somehow manages never to get old for me.
17. Suspicious Package: Film trailer for an interactive iPod noir in which YOU can play the Detective, the Producer, the Heiress or the Showgirl. (Ooh, I wanna be the Showgirl!)
18. Glissando bin Laden and His Musichideen, with video by ( ): A live performance of room-shaking avant-garde music accompanied by live video, which brought the evening to its kick-ass conclusion.
And then we drank more beer. It was still warm. I'm so sorry.
So yeah, let me reiterate that a large amount of the filmed content on display can be seen on our YouTube channel, along with a whole of other Brick-centric flapdoodle.
Tonight will mark the premiere of The Brick-s 72-Hour Films, in which teams of filmmakers had 72 hours to, uh, make films. Which will now be screened! It's impossible to predict what we'll be seeing, which is what makes it a don't-miss event. Along with everything else in the Festival, of course.