Local Sightings opening night film & jurors announced

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Here’s a few nuggets of Local Sightings news to whet your palate while you wait anxiously for the festival to begin October 2…

First of all, we are pleased to announce that the 2009 Local Sightings Film Festival opening night film will be The Mountain, the River and the Road, directed by Michael Harring.

The Mountain, the River and the Road is the story of Jeff (Justin Rice) is a failing post-college writer whose parents are finally kicking him out of the house. With this in mind, Jeff starts out on a road trip to Austin, TX with his friend, Tom (Joe Swanberg); a final grasp at youthful freedom. Their trip begins to unravel when their beater car busts and Tom’s ex-girlfriend intercepts Tom’s paycheck, forcing him to bus it home to resolve his relationship problems. Jeff decides to stay behind in hopes that he will be struck with inspiration as he avoids the pressures of home. He meets Cat (Tipper Newton), a young attractive woman also at a cross roads in her life, who just happens to work at the front desk of the motel. Everything is in place for a great winter romance between the young couple, but the impending return of Tom, the continuation of the road trip, and the unshakable burden of responsibility hover as a reminder of how fleeting romance can be.

We are also thrilled to welcome our 2009 panel of jurors!

Barry Jenkins is a filmmaker born and raised in Miami’s inner city, and currently living in San Francisco. After completing Bachelor’s degrees in both film and creative writing, he relocated to Los Angeles where he worked as a director’s assistant and development associate for Harpo Films. He is the writer/director of the short film My Josephine and the feature film Medicine for Melancholy. Rob Nelson has been a member of the National Society of Film Critics since 1998, and is the recipient of three awards each from the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies and the Society of Professional Journalists. His writing has appeared in Film Comment, Variety, The Village Voice, Mother Jones, and Utne Reader. Nelson teaches film studies at Minneapolis College of Art and Design, and is currently at work on a book. Vanessa Renwick returns to the Local Sightings jury for her second year. Founder and janitor of the Oregon Department of Kick Ass, Vanessa is a film and video installation artist currently residing in Portland, Oregon.

The final program is still being decided. Check http://www.localsightings.org early next week to see the final slate!


Mountain River Road still


Barry Jenkins at NWFF – image courtesy of Kathy Fennessy


Image from Vanessa Renwick’s short film

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