The Hands of Bresson

Sundry observations on the art of cinema and world film culture

Archive for the ‘SXSW 2011’ Category

SXSW: Whose Geek Week Was It?

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Spring break for geeks. That’s what the mainstream news media christened the South by Southwest Interactive Conference in 2008, just as this self-curated, little-engine-that-could collection of daylong panels, trade shows, and wowee-zowee multimedia presentations—dwarfed in past years by the debauched and much more heavily attended Music Festival—began to draw increasing numbers of registrants. (The current estimate is in the high thousands, a 40 percent bump since 2009.) Running concurrently with this orgy of interactivity, of course, is the SXSW Film Festival, an event that when I visited Austin eleven years ago, pre-mumblecore, seemed destined to become a perennial sidebar on Sixth Street, the city’s famed boulevard of bars, clubs, and intoxicated hipsterism. Who’d want to hole up in a movie theater or audit a panel on “HotBot vs. AltaVista: How to Get the Most Out of Your World Wide Web Search” when the Supersuckers and Fu Manchu were making tattooed eardrums bleed at Stubb’s? Geeks, obviously.

The presumed equivalence between film nerds and techies makes sense on the surface. Both tribes, you might say, are addicted to screens. In 1994, when the fest organizers added these strands, film and interactive (dubbed “multimedia” at the time) were conjoined, only to be separated a year later, perhaps for logistical reasons. Certainly, emergent technologies affect the way films are made and exhibited, as well as how we communicate, and the increasingly sophisticated manner in which advertisers brand entertainment experiences. But how easily do these worlds coexist in Austin’s week of wonders? How compatible, really, are the coffee-swilling entrepreneurs and propeller heads congregating at the obscenely spacious Austin Convention Center with the beer-and-a-burger indie-film set, who mostly haunt the old Paramount and State Theaters on Congress Avenue and the Alamo Drafthouses on Sixth Street and (even more conspicuously) South Lamar, miles away from the madness on the far side of Town Lake?

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Written by eyemaster

March 21, 2011 at 3:09 pm

SXSW Short Ends: Kyle Smith

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In the last of our Talkie teasers, Eric Hynes and filmmaker Kyle Smith take a break from SXSW bedlam to toss the pigskin around and discuss Smith’s unique, assured debut TURKEY BOWL. Here Kyle relates the high school sports moment that might have consigned him to a lifetime of filmmaking.

Written by eyemaster

March 18, 2011 at 7:31 pm

SXSW Short Ends: Azazel Jacobs

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In our latest Short End teaser, Reverse Shot’s Eric Hynes strolls the Austin Convention Center with Azazel Jacobs (TERRI, MOMMA’S MAN) in search of SXSW cool.

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Written by eyemaster

March 17, 2011 at 8:06 pm

Todd Rohal, Robert Longstreet, Steve Little: SXSW Short Ends

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Bored with dry land and inspired by the bizzaro river journey undertaken in THE CATECHISM CATACLYSM, the Reverse Shot team sets sail on Town Lake in downtown Austin with director Todd Rohal, who reveals the names of those in the mumblecore set harboring truly unspeakable urges. Meanwhile, co-stars Robert Longstreet (TAKE SHELTER, PINEAPPLE EXPRESS) and Steve Little (EASTBOUND & DOWN) get comfy in the most feared ship on the high seas.

Written by eyemaster

March 17, 2011 at 4:48 am

Greta Gerwig: SXSW Short Ends

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As part of our ongoing 2011 SXSW video coverage, team Reverse Shot sat down with Greta Gerwig to discuss her new film, The Dish and the Spoon. In this clip, she looks back on her first trip to SXSW in the halcyon days of 2006.

Written by eyemaster

March 16, 2011 at 6:10 pm

Marie Losier: SXSW Short Ends

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On the ground in Austin for SXSW 2011, the Reverse Shot team chatted with Marie Losier (THE BALLAD OF GENESIS AND LADY JAYE) about a particularly surprising meeting with a wasp during a screening of Azazel Jacobs’s TERRI. In advance of our full-length Talkie with Losier, shot at the Texas State Capitol building, we’re posting this “short end.”

Written by eyemaster

March 16, 2011 at 6:06 pm