2010

Documentary Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
26 minutes
Director:
Jesse Veverka, Jeremy Veverka

REIFF 2010

China's unprecedented growth has placed it on the verge of overtaking the United States as the world's preeminent power. Meanwhile, Chalmers Johnson, author of Blowback and The Sorrows of Empire, argues that America's preoccupation with militarism has all but sealed its fate as a nation in long-term decline. But if China surpasses the United States, what type of power will it become? In today's interconnected and globalized world, the answer affects each and every one of us.

In Pakistan and Afghanistan, China's humanitarian activities and investment in infrastructure have won it the hearts and minds of the people. Yet in Tibet and Xinjiang, China is reviled as an imperialistic abuser of human rights. Despite trumpeting its vision of an ethnic unity at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the Chinese government has gone to great lengths to silence dissenting voices such as Rebiya Kadeer, de facto leader of the Uyghur people. Kadeer has replaced the Dalai Lama as Beijing's number one public adversary.

Will China follow in the footsteps of history's other great powers and use its strength to dominate its neighbors, trample ethnic and religious minorities, and become a 21st century empire? Or will a wealthy Chinese youth lead the country towards democracy, much like Taiwan? The international community shares responsibility in this outcome, but is it too dependent on Chinese trade to care? Whether it's a peaceful rise or potential threat, China's 21st century emergence as a great world power will change the lives of everyone.

Narrative Short
United Kingdom
Runtime:
10 minutes
Director:
Chiman Rahimi

REIFF 2010

Rojin is a maid at a chic hotel in London. When she overhears a hotel guest, memories of her past in Iran, a country she fled long ago, come rushing back. Finding herself In a position to wreak revenge on her torturer, Rojin must consider the ultimate question: Can she forgive if she can never forget? Kurdish women in Iran suffer abuse and a form of double-discrimination, due their ethnicity and their gender. Perpetrators of this abuse are rarely caught and even more rarely punished. Rojin is the latest short film from award-winning production company Poisson Rouge Pictures.

Narrative Short
United States
Runtime:
25 minutes
Director:
Nathan Fisher

REIFF 2010

The world as we know it has ended, and Thomas survives each new day locked up alone inside his missing neighbor's fallout shelter. The oppressive boredom is occasionally punctuated by the pleas of survivors outside, but Thomas greets them with indifference and even hostility. In a brief moment of "weakness" he allows a young girl inside his world, but is his desire for companionship enough to overcome his instinct to survive?

In this followup to his successful 2009 release Beyond the Wall of Sleep, Nathan Fisher takes us into a world gone mad and into the mind of one survivor as he tries to determine what makes a life worth living.

Narrative Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
39 minutes
Director:
Mary Sweeney

REIFF 2010

Set in bountiful rural Wisconsin, Baraboo follows six people who have each carved a life out at Petersen's Cabins, a rundown motel/resort. Some are there by choice, others by circumstance. They circle one another with caution, desire, anger and compassion, inching their way toward understanding.

Narrative Short
United States
Runtime:
5 minutes
Director:
Tim Miller

REIFF 2010

Two tortured souls spend a leisurely afternoon lamenting life, cheese and their mere existence, unaware of the imminent danger of their predicament.

Narrative Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
40 minutes
Director:
Frank Pestarino

REIFF 2010

Heartwrenching coming of age film set in 1989 blue collar New York. Four teens meander through love and tragedy, bonded by a secret that would seal their fate. Outstanding performances from all drive the film that will engulf the audience in tension and the brutal reality of teenage life from the opening credits.

Documentary Short
United States
Runtime:
14 minutes
Director:
Joseph Hendrickson

REIFF 2010

Discover the art of tree house design and creation through the heart, mind and music of Roderick Romero, one of the great visionaries in his field. Roderick has pushed the boundaries of tree house aesthetics and has redefined what it means to be living with nature. Set to the music of Roderick's longtime band Sky Cries Mary & Futruo, the soundtrack expresses the man behind the architecture.

Follow Roderick from start to finish on one of his most pinnacle projects to date, the Moroccan Lantern Tree House. Observe fundamental techniques in tree house construction while exploring the thoughts that shape Roderick's sculptural dwellings. Choosing to use almost 99% all reclaimed materials, Roderick has been a long time supporter of sustainable architecture. This level of consciousness invites a deeper understanding of the spaces we live in and connects us to the beauty of the natural world. His unique perspective illuminates this exciting new art form and translates across disciplines to give elevating insights into the art-making process.

Narrative Short
United States
Runtime:
20 minutes
Director:
Carlo Besasie

REIFF 2010

Michael, a down on his luck, love-less bag boy, learns that world-famous, concert violinist Nicholas Rentz is going to be performing for a few nights in his home town. Bearing a resemblance to the musician (a well-known bachelor with female fans around the globe), Michael hatches an elaborate plan to impersonate him with the hope that he can trick a woman or two into thinking he's the genuine article and get lucky. But when he meets a classy young woman at a ritzy nightclub and is poised to seal the deal, things take an unexpected turn.

Narrative Short
United States
Runtime:
12 minutes
Director:
Joel Moffett

REIFF 2010

Poi Dogs is the story of two local Hawaiian teenagers and their awkward attempts at expressing a budding romantic interest in each other. Toa, a tough-acting lineman on a crappy high school football team, has just lost the big game. Distraught and alone, he drives home on his old ramshackle moped, which breaks down in the shadow of an abandoned sugar mill. Anela, the tough-acting tuba player on his teams marching band, walks up and tries to console him. Ashamed, Toa pushes her away. After a tense fight, Toa and Anela find common ground by overcoming their pride and accepting each other's help. In the end, Poi Dogs illustrates the first small step towards love by two guarded teenagers.

Documentary Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
36 minutes
Director:
Ethan Dufault

REIFF 2010

This film is the story of an 86-year-old, war veteran poet, Peter Kane Dufault, as he comes to terms with his past and the collective sense of a threatened future. This is a story about connection and loss, both personal and political. Through on-screen interactions with his son, two Nobel laureates and the actor Chris Noth, Peter reveals how poetic language and imagination can bridge the rifts that open between individuals and the larger political, environmental and emotional landscape of their lives.

The actor Chris Noth pays a visit to the poet, who was once his American history teacher and soccer coach. He recalls the formative influence the old man had on his life. They play soccer together. Peter and his son travel to Cape May to find the declining American kestrel. Peter recites a poem about his deceased daughter who brought him a fledgling kestrel to raise. A kestrel appears as if "quarried out of a rainbow," the symbol of all that is vanishing from what's left of the American wilderness. He expresses his outrage at the past administration's piecemeal demolition of the Constitution in a poem called "Blues Recitative," and acknowledges his disappointment with the present administration. In the end, Peter admits that he's glad that he doesn't have to teach American history any more. He observes a colony of seals plunging into a stormy surf, reflecting on the mortal entity that the earth has become. He walks away, alone, vanishing into the mist.

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