"The True/False Film Fest returns for its seventh edition Feb. 25 - 28, 2010. The festival highlights innovative work with a cinematic scope, creative takes on contemporary currents, and most of all work that provokes dialogue about its subject and the documentary form itself.I've seen a number of movies at this festival in the last four years I've lived here. Sometimes, they're amazing - fun, interesting, and informative. Other times they're...well, they're not so great. Because they're generally made by small-time producers with no guidelines, some of the films can get a bit off the wall, and a little too out there (for me at least). Never the less, they're still amazing to go see.
For four days, downtown Columbia, Missouri is transformed into a small-town Midwestern utopia. Most films come freshly discovered from Sundance, Toronto and other festivals, others appear mysteriously before their official premieres elsewhere. Sandwiched between the nonstop movies, we throw parties, host debates and field trips, and challenge local filmmakers to reimagine the possibilities of nonfiction filmmaking."
The festival is run by volunteers for the most part. While I've never gotten the change to volunteer, this year Jayme and Allie did. Jayme was a Juggernaut, and clocked something like 52 hours in a week (most of it over the weekend). She literally had 15+ hour days working for T/F - but she loved it. Allie worked the March March Parade (that anyone can participate in) and the Weird Wake-Up, which is breakfast and a movie. They got to see any movies they wanted for free (whereas I paid $6 a ticket) and had a couple after-parties as well.
Sean and I went and saw two movies while we were at the festival.
The first, Waking Sleeping Beauty, is a documentary about Walt Disney Studios in the 80s and 90s. It had all original film footage, including caricatures from the artists, unfinished and deleted scenes from films like The Lion King and The Little Mermaid, and footage of the artists at "work," acting out storyboards and sketching. It was amazing.
The second film we saw was GasLand. We probably wouldn't have gone to see it, but Lyndsey gave us free tickets, compliments of the J-School, so we went. It was actually surprisingly good. It talked about the dangers of natural gas, but moreso how natural gas isn't regulated. I'm generally not one for "save the earth" advocacy films, but this was so informative, rather than authoritative.
In any case, if anyone is ever in CoMo around the end of February, NEVER hesitate to check out T/F. This closing video totally captures the spirit of T/F: