The Female Gaze
Reel Women's 'Digital Divas'
Technically, Reel Women -- a local collective celebrating and supporting women in film -- isn't living up to its name. Each year, the group holds a film forum, a weekend packed with screenings, panels, and mentoring sessions. But this year, in a program called "Digital Divas," Reel Women is highlighting digital filmmaking -- all tape, no reels.
And they've assembled an impressive tape collection, further proof that not only is video faster, cheaper, and more accessible than your typical film stock, it's giving film a run for its money in the aesthetics department, too.
The opening night film, Agnès Varda's The Gleaners and I, brings big-name clout to the medium (see "The Gleaners and I," right). Screening the next night is first-time filmmaker Dani Minnick's Falling Like This, a beautifully shot look at "outlaw" love between teenagers that features a soundtrack dominated by Ani DiFranco (the title is taken from one of her songs). Concluding the minifest is Animal Attractions, documentarian Kathy High's take on people-pet relations, with a bizarre side story on a woman who believes she can talk to animals (presumably, the animals talk back). Animated shorts by local filmmaker Francesca Talenti will screen before the first two features. Kathy High and Lulu Zezza, the producer of Falling Like This, will be in attendance, as well as a roster of local film luminaries who'll take part in a panel discussion and one-on-one sessions on Saturday -- all reeling to impart some of their filmic knowledge. So maybe that name wasn't so misleading after all.