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Massachusetts Independent Film Festival fields strong program on the first day!

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Chris Di Nunzio, Dean Treadway, Nolan Yee, Jason Miller and Skip Shea put together a strong program for the first day of the Massachusetts Independent Film Festival.

The Boston Film Industry Examiner had as pleasant an afternoon watching Independent Film as one could wish for.

Most resonant with contemporary life was re: Jess. It opens with a scene that everyone who is not a hermit has seen or been part of. A couple is at a café and the young man’s phone is controlling his life. Every two seconds he must check a text. He is trying to be good company, but it is not working. Finally, he actually speaks on the phone and finds someone close has died and a painful grieving process is mediated by his apple product.

There were some worthy documentaries screened. In the so-called post-Cold War era, it looks like we are ratcheting up the rhetoric to have another one. Actually, the old one never ended and Tim Wilkerson’s The Oracles of Pennsylvania Avenue is as much about the new Cold War. Norman David Mayer may have been certifiable, but what he was protesting is itself still crazy after all these years.

The other docs, Earth, Water Woman, But It Doesn’t Have Me, The Gleaner’s Kitchen were wonderful and The Boston Film Industry Examiner regrets he has not enough time to discuss them.

Irlanda Elizabeth is a true Boston tale and not easy to watch. An immigrant woman is courted by a local man who turns out to be a difficult alcoholic. The lady carries on and raises the family and then takes care of the husband who is debilitated by his years of self-indulgence. The filmmaker, Mary Horan was there for the screening and participated in a Q and A after the movie.

We here in New England justly enjoy the beauty of the Berkshires and White Mountains. For breadth and size, one would guess, they don’t compare with the Cascades in the Pacific Northwest. A Standing Still is the story of a woman who is employed monitoring the mountain in a lookout tower. She loves her work, but as majestic as the hills are, they are not the whole world. Allison, played by Sara Robbin has to leave the mountain to deal with the death spiral of her dad. Sara and dad, who is played by Ted Rooney are both sympathetic characters, as is Katie O’Grady who plays dad’s girlfriend.

It is wrong I am not mentioning the other fine offerings and wish I had time. This is all the more reason to start heading over to the Somerville Theater so you don’t miss today’s program.

The list of films for Tuesday is here and there are links to the rest of the program.

Also, there is no dearth of information at the facebook page.

Also, take a few minutes to watch the embedded video as Nolan and Jason talk about MassIFF.

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