Only 8 MORE DAYS until WFF 2015! Check out today's staff picks below.
Today's Documentary Staff Pick, BURIED ABOVE GROUND, brings to light the global health condition we now recognize as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) by sharing the courageous journeys of three Americans wrestling with the aftermath of devastating events. The film broadens the scope of PTSD beyond combat veterans to include other forms of debilitating trauma that currently impact 450 million people worldwide. Struggle along with U.S. Army captain Luis Montalvan, back from the Iraq War, as he learns to cope with his inner war wounds and resurface via the bond he forms with his service dog, Tuesday. Relive Hurricane Katrina with evacuee Ashley as she pledges to rebuild her home while she rebuilds herself. Empathize with Erundina, fighting to stay sober and go back to school after surviving child abuse and domestic violence. Filmed over six years, with intimate access to these survivors as they unburden themselves of the past, BURIED ABOVE GROUND pays tribute to the human spirit and the skill of the filmmaker.
In today's Narrative Feature Staff Pick, THE GRACE OF JAKE, recently released from prison drifter/musician Jake steals a car and hits the road for small town Arkansas, intent on exacting revenge against the father he never knew. Although he never met the man, Jake blames him for all of life's troubles, starting with his mother's death. Arriving in this dustbowl town with only a guitar to sustain him, Jake discovers nothing is as he imagined. THE GRACE OF JAKE is, at its core, the story of a man who finds redemption through friendship, faith and his deep-rooted love of gospel music, which bonds him with the locals and sets him on a righteous path. Religion, however, is backdrop to the music. Grammy-nominated director Chris Hicky proves his musical aptitude by wisely casting Jake La Botz, who learned his trade from old Mississippi bluesmen, as lead man. The soul-filled music is extraordinary, the acting genuine, and the tempo in perfect harmony with the surroundings. From crop dusters to gospel churches, this compassionate film captures the essence of the Arkansas delta.
Our superb collection of short documentaries screening at this year's festival includes:
EL PORVENIR, directed by Alfredo Alcantara Merentes & Josh Chertoff
A third-generation cockfighter struggles to hold on to his family's way of life in the face of a movement to ban the sport across Mexico.
ENJOY YOUR INTERMISSION, directed by Adam Carboni & Tansy Michaud
An intimate look at a drive-in movie theater in its last summer of projecting 35mm film.
THE HOUSE IS INNOCENT, directed by Nicholas Coles
Tom and Barbara's new home has a notorious past. It's going to take more than a fresh coat of paint to whitewash its macabre history.
LENNY BEE, directed by John Huba
John Huba's "Lenny Bee" is a heartfelt portrait of longtime Woodstock resident and farmer extraordinaire Leonardo Francesco Busciglio
SPEARHUNTER, directed by Adam Roffman and Luke Poling
Deep in the wilds of rural Alabama, a spear-hunter proclaims himself the world's greatest and erects a museum dedicated to his own obsession.
WE LIVE THIS, directed by James Burns
The story of four boys from the projects who have come together to pursue their dreams.