Festival of Cinema 2023: Detroit Street Films Block
On Thursday August 10th We got the opportunity to witness the group Detroit Street Films/Station House Poets showcase some of their work and in the process create a poem that will be the thesis for one of their next films. Detroit Street Films is a collective based in Los Angeles that specializes in creating films on a micro budget and Station House Poets is a collective of poets who happen to create visuals for their poems. It seem like a good fit and it is. The interactive experience showcased 13 short films which ranged from 3 to 18 minutes which is enough time to read along the poems that provides the plot of each film. The collective which have weekly Zoom meetings since the pandemic finally got the other in-person for once.
The first film was Advantages of NOT Being in the Same Room which is based on a group poem about the effects of seclusion during the pandemic and the wants of human contact. It was very impressive giving the actors expressions doing different acts as they say a line. The next film was The Things I Say To My Animal which is a funny warm film about humans relationships with their pets. After that Cold Eggs, Hot Coffee a nice kind hearted film about recalling shared breakfasts before the pandemic occurred. The pandemic was the theme for most of the films due to the fact that the group did not have any in person encounters until recently. Most of the films were either funny like Old T-shirts and My Foot Hurts, some were strange like Bondage On 14th Street which is a ode to the old Times Square and BDSM then there are family oriented ones like My First Car and Dogs In The Ocean which were a nice break from the serious tones.
The closing film titled Whiskey Floats is about two men who met at the same time at the same place for some time until one of them have health issues and blames the health insurance industry for his diagnosis and bashes them for manipulated his friend to thinking he's in remission when all they did was charge his policy. Rob Douthat, the director of the film gives the audience a great view on how friendships that are long lasting can be strained by modern day struggles and the systems that have contributed to keeping them from moving forward. The acting was great especially Jay Dunigan as Jeff who is the protagonist that blames the health insurance industry for his problems. It was a great performance. Whiskey Floats was a good way to close out the interactive experimental event. Hopefully we will see Whiskey Floats in more festivals it's really that good