Chuck Jaffee: NC Film Festival in retrospect |

Chuck Jaffee: NC Film Festival in retrospect

The 8th Nevada City Film Festival is history. Jason Graham (festival director), David Nicholson (program director), Jeffrey Clark (executive director), and a slew of dedicated volunteers are tired. It is impressive that little Nevada City has two film festival traditions. It sure takes a bunch of dedication to make them happen.

The Audience Award for short film went to “American/Sandinista.” This documentary showed Americans doing civilian work in war ravaged Nicaragua in the 1980s. It’s a grounded and substantive way to shine enlightenment on war.

For feature length film, “Leaving Barstow” won the Audience Award. It told a modest story about a teenager at the edge of a stuck life, near a path to fuller possibilities.

“Leaving Barstow” also collected the Jury Prize for best feature between sets at the “after-party,” Saturday. The Pyronauts and the all-female Led Zeppelin tribute band, Zepparella, rocked the party crowd.

“Feelings and Stuff,” from Finland, took the Jury Prize for short film. Many international submissions were selected for the festival. This was quite a dorky and peculiar film, but it’s creative, fun and a nice little romance.

The award for Best Local Film went to “Why Not Dad,” a documentary showcasing fathers who live the “stay-at-home-mom” roll, with mom as the “breadwinner.”

At one of the special live sessions, Thomson Grass Valley demonstrated its film editing software – powerful and easy to use. The editors of the “Tim and Eric Awesome Show” (headed into its third season on Cartoon Network) showed how they play editing to the hilt.

The festival built on last year’s success and expanded its offerings. It opened at the Nevada Theatre Thursday, flared into an array of programs at the Miner’s Foundry Friday and Saturday, and finished Sunday at the Magic Theatre with a local filmmakers theme and a best-of-festival reprise. Throughout, filmmakers were on hand to interact with festival-goers.

The 8th Nevada City Film Festival is history. On to the 9th.

Chuck Jaffee of Nevada City likes to plug people into the spirit of independent filmmakers. Find his other articles for The Union at The next Nevada City Film Festival tradition he’ll write about is the Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival in January.

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