Free Range Films crop up independentThere is a lot packed into the Free Range Film Barn the weekend of July 26-27, but that’s OK. The 30-foot tall ceiling is used to handling a lot of volume.
There is a lot packed into the Free Range Film Barn the weekend of July 26-27, but that’s OK. The 30-foot tall ceiling is used to handling a lot of volume.
This year’s crops are more of the independent film variety than corn or soybeans.
Celebrating its tenth year, the Free Range Film Festival announced its 2013 harvest of 29 films nurtured without the use of pesticides, growth hormones or a distribution deal from a fancy-pants Hollywood studio.
As part of the line-up each of the organizers has chosen one of their favorite flicks from the past decade including an animation by local artist Brian Barber about the mayor of Duluth’s secret weapon; an experimental two minute film about unicorn kabobs, and a documentary by Luke Holden about his grandfather’s difficulty disposing of farm animals.
“All of the films this year have a truly unique voice,” says Anne Dugan, one of the festival’s coordinators. “There are zombies, documentaries, cat flicks and some crazy animation. That’s why we’ve done the festival for ten years - there is always something new and wonderful and surprising to watch.”
Friday night’s feature film will be a documentary by Found Magazine’s Davy Rothbart and co-director Andrew Cohn. “Medora” follows the most losing team in high school basketball history - the Medora Hornets of Medora, Ind., as they try to overcome more than just their sports record.
“It’s inspiring but not in a cloying way” says Dugan, “You end up really rooting for these guys.”
In addition to the feature, Friday will showcase the musical side of filmmaking with a very special performance by local band “Portrait of a Drowned Man.” The group created an original score for the short “Inside the Whale” directed by Greg Carlson and playing in Friday’s line up.
Saturday afternoon’s line up showcases a unique double feature with two documentary darlings of this year’s film festival circuit: “The Harvest” and “Bending Steel.” The director of “The Harvest” will be in the audience to answer questions after his film, which is good considering the subject matter. It covers the odd paradox of terminally ill children hunting animals as their final wish.
On Saturday evening, there will be a variety of mixed animation including the US premiere of “The Diver.” The culmination of the festival features the documentary “The Last Shepherd”.
“We all fell in love with Renalto” says Dugan “I’m pretty sure the entire audience will too.”
Screenings begin at 7 p.m. July 26 Movies continue through the weekend 2-5 p.m. and 7 p.m. July 27
It all takes place at the junctions of County Roads 1 and 4 just a few miles south of Wrenshall and approximately 25 minutes south of Duluth. The suggested $10 donation goes towards maintenance of the theater and organization of the festival. More information is available at the festival website, www.freerangfilm.com.