Short Cuts

Tales from the Tarantino trenches

Ich Bin Ein Scheisskopf Dept.: QT5 is in full swing over at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema (409 Colorado) and continues through this coming Sunday, Aug. 26. This year's fest, during which indie hipster über alles Quentin Tarantino drops into town with 30 or so prints from his personal exploitation film collection, has been, unsurprisingly, a rousing success, selling out nightly (although those precious walk-up tix are still sometimes available, especially for the later shows) and generating considerable goodwill toward the man who hasn't graced theatre screens with his own films in several years. If this is how QT wants to spend his summers, hey, fine by us. Friday's kickoff Spaghetti Western triple feature got off to a decidedly Tarantino-esque start when, according to Alamo co-owner Karrie League, a disgruntled lunatic fringer wandered into the theatre's downstairs lobby and demanded entrance while shouting neo-Nazi epithets and yelling "I am king of all Germans!" Okaaay. The offending party was quickly ejected from the premises, allowing the assembled queue to resume geeking out. Tarantino later enthused over the number of Cinemascope IB prints on hand for the fest, as well as making a point to (finally) screen a Lee Van Cleef film (or two, or three) during the SpagWest triple threat. The remaining four evenings in the fest cover, tonight, Thursday, Aug.23, "Bunch of Guys on a Mission War Movies," and then "Revenge Night Triple Feature," an "Old School Kung Fu All-Night Marathon," on Friday and Saturday, with the fest concluding Sunday, with an "Exploitation Grab-Bag." Also, Saturday, Aug. 25, Tarantino presents the second of his Kiddie Matinees at noon. Tix info, times, and news about the fest can be found online at or by calling 474-1510… In other festival news, the Austin Film Festival and Heart of Film Screenwriter's Conference (Oct. 11-18) has announced they will be honoring writer/director/producer/Jedi chillmaster Lawrence Kasdan with their Distinguished Screenwriter Award. Other confirmed fest attendees include Shane Black (Lethal Weapon), Christopher McQuarrie (The Usual Suspects), and Mike Rich (Finding Forrester), among others. Early registration ends Saturday, Sept. 22. For downloadable early registration forms and pretty much anything else you might need, check out, or give 'em a holler at 345-8969… The 2001 Movie Midwifing: A Series of Screenplay Readings and Short Films kicks off on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 6:30pm, at the Hideout (617 Congress Ave.), with an unstaged reading of Sean Bridges' script Journeyman (not to be confused with the similarly titled James Crowley film that screened at SXSW 2001). Bridges' script recently placed in the quarterfinals of the 2001 Nicholl Fellowship competition and is still in the running to advance further. Future readings will include Houston-based writers Sharon Ferranti and Lauren Johnson's lesbian romantic comedy Contact Sports on Sept. 11, Austinite Gayle Leslie's romantic drama Deep Blue on Sept. 18, and Austinite Greg Murphy's comedic fantasy Hollywoodland on Sept. 25. The series continues Thursdays through Sept. 25. Admission is $6 at the door. E-mail for more info… CinemaTexas International Short Film + Video Festival has nailed down most of its program; here's a preview of what you can expect from this year's festival, which runs Sept. 14-23: Out-of-competition entries include new works from indie heavy-hitters Hal Hartley, Errol Morris, and the sublime Guy Maddin; special programs include the intriguingly titled "All the Girls With Cameras in Their Heads," featuring the works of various avant-garde women filmmakers. Check out for all your confusion-obliteration needs.

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Quentin Tarantino, Karrie League, Movie Midwifing, Cinematexas, Mike Rich, Lawrence Kasdan, Christopher McQuarrie, Shane West

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