Independent Film Festival of Boston 2007

By Jake Meaney

17 May 2007


These films share connecting tendrils of a strident defiance of convention, of this total faith in the surface non-sequitur; a seeming senselessness that really only masks the deeper connections and traditions flowing beneath their surfaces.

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Closing Night

An audience decked out in full Boston Red Sox gear waits, in vain, for the appearance of star slugger, David Ortiz -- the film, it seems, was incidental. Meanwhile, Scott Caan, son of the enigmatic James Caan, gives a possible starmaking performance as a wiseguy wannabe.

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Preservation and Perseverance

Away from Her grasps at that which can't be held and kept: the white of snow, the white of the winter sky, the white of the lacunae of memory. The Paper tires desperately to hold on to the Romantic ideals of journalism at its best, while watching it fade into obsolescence.

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Wild-eyed zealotry and borderline sociopathic behavior make for good cinema. Less spectactularly but no less effective, though, is forcing viewers to take a good, hard look at their own moral make-up, and leaving them contemplating explicitly just where and why boundaries must be drawn.

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The Illusionists

A grandiose, delusional pastor turned filmmaker thinks he may have Mel Gibson beat. Elsewhere, a theatre full of delighted LARPers testify to the power of imagination and play.

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Black Mirrors

These two films reflect our fears of terror and violence through a glass darkly What looks back at us in Day Night Day Night is teetering on the verge of a dark, dark void, and in The Killer Within is but cravenly hiding itself behind its impartial, reflected veneer.

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Opening Night

Fay Grim gives newcomers a lesson in Hal Hartleyisms: repetitious totemic dialogue, revolving jokes that cycle through characters, and his wry, winking treatment of genre. Whereas On Broadway, a middling film about an amateur play, is only hopelessly or maybe semi-cleverly "amateurish".

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//Mixed media

Con Brio: The Best New Live Band in America?

// Notes from the Road

"There’s a preciousness to McCarter and the rest of the mostly young band. You want to freeze the moment, to make sure they are taking it all in too. Because it’s going to change.

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