October 14, 2016

NHFF Serves Six Flavors on Thursday Night

Hungry for entertainment, folks climbed one flight of stairs and found a seat amid the regal thrones of The Music Hall for a series of short films on Thursday evening at the 2016 New Hampshire Film Festival. Red carpets lined the floors, walls were styled with gold tones and (have we mentioned..?) the bathrooms looked like something out of Hogwarts.

Within the cinema, Celtic music engaged the audience into the first film for Thursday night’s Short Block. In less than an hour and a half, guests would consume six films, each of a different flavor.

For breakfast, Murals of Belfast was served. The film was directed by Ron Wyman and produced by Ron Wyman and Van MacLeod. This documentary portrayed, with English subtitles, the truth from communities of Northern Ireland. Although Tommy Maken was asked to perform at a peace rally for Northern Ireland years past, the Irish folk musician had not a song about peace. The truth was, violent incidents had shaped the culture of this population. Murals of Belfast depicts how the people of Northern Ireland honed a negative attitude, negated ambition and lacked a work ethic. Catch a second showing on Saturday at 4:40pm, at the Moffatt-Ladd House!

The audience then snacked on a documentary titled Telling the Story of Slavery. This film was directed by Kalim Armstrong, who also produced this piece with Nicholas Weissman. Natural sounds hummed in the background of interviews, which discussed the first museum in America to explore the legacy of slavery. This documentary delves into the past; when the white way of life was far more lavish than that of an African. Telling the Story of Slavery explores perspective and acknowledges a link between freedom and civil rights. Check out this film on Friday at 1:45pm or on Saturday at 10:20am in 3S Artspace!

Split Ticket was served for lunch by director Alfred Thomas Caltalfo. This film could be considered a twist on history, intertwined with drama and fantasy. Its producers include Alfred Thomas Caltalfo himself, Amanda Duquette, Bill Bourbon and Gina Caltalfo Nelson. The film was based on factual events and diversified in the twilight zone. Upon traveling to Pennsylvania, early congressmen and future presidents, John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon, found themselves in a fateful situation. Catch Split Ticket’s truthful quirks and unfathomable resolutions on Saturday at 6:20pm in Mofatt-Ladd House!

Earworm was a treat produced by Billy Hanson and Tara Price. In this horror clip a man is overtaken by an obstinate melody and a sizeable bug, wedged in his ear.

“Why?” A woman from the audience inquired during questions and answers.

“Why not? It’s meant to be a play on words. I was surprised to discover not many people knew what an earworm was. So I made a video about a tune that runs through somebody’s mind and added a literal bug to the mix.” Director Tara Price says. Lookout for this film on Friday at 10:20am at The Loft, or again on Saturday at 6:20pm at the Mofatt-Ladd House!

Dinner was Fire, directed by Ben Silberfarb. This film is categorized as an adventure film as well as a drama and it was produced by Andrew Lund and Ben Silberfarb. A man and his dog venture into a frigid wilderness, aiming for a backcountry cabin. Ed is bitter over the separation from his girlfriend and takes to drinking, jet skiing and dismantling his judgment. Fire is truly a chilling film. Catch another screening on Saturday at 4:40pm or on Sunday at 1:45pm at the Moffatt-Ladd House!

A final short — a documentary titled The Portsmouth Project  — was served up to the audience for dessert. This film was directed by Catherine Bobalek and Rebecca Weinel. It was produced by Rebecca Weinel and written by Kelsey Beth Collins. A Savannah sculpture artist, Jerome Meadows, was asked to design a piece for African Burial Ground Memorial Park. Previously, Portsmouth had been a slave trade port, where Africans were brought in and sold. Recently a backwards funeral was conducted, where a burial ground, which had once been paved over, was undone.

In the film, interviewees illustrate the importance of remembering these souls. The Portsmouth Project delves into a shameful past and highlights a cordial future. Watch this documentary again on Friday at 10:20am at The Loft, or on Saturday at 1:40pm at 3S Artspace!