12th Annual Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival

Posted: September 12, 2010 in Uncategorized
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It’s almost time for the Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival here in Birmingham.  This is a really cool event, featuring independent films shown in 9 venues within easy walking distance of each other in downtown Birmingham.  These venues include old-timey theaters such as the Alabama Theatre and Carver Theatre (it’s neat to see movies at locations built prior to the age of the large multiplex theaters we see today).  Weekend passes are only $50, a heck of a deal considering a single movie generally runs you $10 these days.  The event starts Friday, September 24th and runs through that Sunday.

Here are a few movies scheduled that have my interest:

  • American JihadistA documentary that takes a look at the social, economic, and political environments that leads an American to turn to radical Islam, specifically Isa Abdullah Ali (aka Clevin Raphael Holt).  Something tells me he doesn’t hate us for our freedom that he was once part of.
  • The Parking Lot Movie – A documentary shot at a single parking location in Charlottesville, Virginia.  Appears to be quirky subject matter, following the work of parking attendants as they wage “war” against the elite customers that park their cars in their lot.  Their primary weapon?  Humor.
  • The Human Centipede – Horror film in which a German doctor kidnaps three tourists and surgically attaches them together mouth-to-anus (ah, that old chestnut).  Not sure about this, it’s almost certainly bad.  But is it bad in such away that it becomes good?
  • Mutant Girls Squad – Japanese horror film about a girl that discovers on her 16th birthday that she can transform her hand into a beastly appendage that can destroy anything in its path.
  • Cleanflix – Documentary about the battle between Utah DVD retailers who started editing movies to remove sex, nudity, profanity, and violence from films to make them more acceptable to Mormon audiences and Hollywood who protested having their movies edited without their permission.
  • Automorphosis Documentary about folks that transform their cars into works of art.  Hmm, wonder what I could transform my Ford Escort into?
  • Ready, Set, Bag – Documentary following eight competitors in a national grocery bagging competition.  Apparently these folks take their work seriously!  But I guess if you are going to be a bagger, you may as well be the best damn bagger in the world!
  • Evil Things – The premise of this movie is that 5 young folks head out to celebrate a birthday and disappear without a trace.  That is, until this “home video” is “found”.  Definitely can see the film is going for The Blair Witch Project/Paranormal Activity vibe.  I really liked those two films.

Of course this is just a small sample of the entire movie lineup.  Also, along with feature-length films, the festival features several blocks of short films.  Plus, and I’m pretty sure this is new this year, I see that there are numerous offerings for kids as part of the Children’s Film Extravaganza.  Really, if you like films and live near the Birmingham area, there’s no good reason not to attend.  You know, unless you hate fun!

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