2016

Best of Fest
Documentary Feature
Egypt, United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
20 minutes
Director:
Anna Kipervaser

Every day people are being replaced by machines worldwide. After 1,400 years, thousands of muezzins in Cairo are no longer calling people to pray as wireless receivers replace them in reciting the adhan. CAIRO IN ONE BREATH unfolds as the Adhan Unification Project takes hold and as Egypt undergoes Revolution and regime change.

Special Jury Award for Truth in Storytelling
Narrative Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
35 minutes
Director:
Chris Brown

THE OTHER KIDS follows six teenagers as they struggle through their final days of high school in the small, gold rush town of Sonora, CA. ISAAC, a Mexican national abandoned as a child by his family, barely treads water in a culture hostile to non-whites. Poor and living on his own in an abandoned trailer, Isaac works three jobs (landscaping, dishwashing and metalworking), studies hard, and dreams of someday becoming a diplomat. Isaac's girlfriend, SIENNA, a stable-hand and natural cowgirl, is forced to cope not only with the brutal dissolution of her family, but with her parents' violent objections to her relationship with Isaac.

Special Jury Award
Narrative Short
United States
Runtime:
28 minutes
Director:
Colby Holt

When he cant afford a retirement community, a nursing home, or a caregiver, Rudy Hendricks and his husband are forced to move back to his hometown in Kentucky to care for his ailing conservative father. Along the way, he grows closer with his single mother, sister and his gay but repressed best friend who never left home.

Special Jury Award
Narrative Short
United States
Runtime:
34 minutes
Director:
Zach Bandler, Kelly Blatz

A moving performance by Anthony Heald (Silence of the Lambs, Red Dragon, Boston Public) highlights THE STAIRS, as an older man who hires a male escort for company on Christmas Eve. Faced with the realities of his own loneliness, he finds a strange kinship with the young man in this late-night exploration of solitude, intimacy and the basic human need for connection.

Special Jury Award
Narrative Short
Serbia
Runtime:
10 minutes
Director:
Luka Popadic

Two fishing buddies, Big brother and some fish stew. BAITS AND HOOKS is a black comedy inspired by the style oft he Czech New Wave about how two workers of an old factory face the transition from socialism to capitalism. A short and sweet film about friendship and cooking, but also about a generation of workers who have to deal with the changed system.

Documentary Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
29 minutes
Director:
Gregg Simpson

Professional bodybuilder Denise Masino has spent her life striving for the physical perfection of a superhero. When she discovers there are people calling themselves real-life superheroes (dressing in costume and fighting crime!) she embarks on a journey across the U.S. to get to the bottom of this incredible story.

Experimental
United States
Runtime:
16 minutes
Director:
Josh Jacobs

Sometimes when you change, the world doesn't - it continues.

Documentary Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
30 minutes
Director:
Cyrus Dowlatshahi

TAKIN PLACE is an observational documentary film directed by Cyrus Dowlatshahi about ordinary people and everyday life on the South Side of Chicago. As they work, chill, hustle and survive, Dowlatshahi reveals the common aspects of all neighborhoods and communities around the world: a desire to share, grow and celebrate.

Narrative Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
17 minutes
Director:
Nicholas Zafonte

Two college friends reunite fifteen years later in a secluded summer home, for a writers' retreat. As they attempt to write a movie together, Sean, still a carefree musician and Emily, now an uptight lawyer, try to recapture the intimate friendship they once shared.

Documentary Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
16 minutes
Director:
Brandon Kramer

CITY OF TREES tells a deeply personal story about the struggle to implement a high-stakes, stimulus-funded green job-training program at the height of the recession. CTY OF TREES follows the point-of-view of three long-term unemployed DC residents hired by the program Charles, Michael, and James; and Steve, the director tasked with managing the multi-million dollar stimulus grant. When local racial tensions and a marginalized communitys entrenched distrust of outsiders complicate a seemingly simple goal of putting unemployed people back to work by planting trees, CITY OF TREES thrusts viewers into the inspiring but messy world of job training and the paradoxes changemakers face in urban communities everyday.

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