Some Call It Mumblecore: A New American Independence

Some Call it Mumblecore: A New American Independence

"The true spirit of independent American film is back...If these films share only one thing, it's that they're beautifully, painfully real." --The Guardian Unlimited

The Mumblecore movement is coming to Fort Worth. Join us in supporting these defiantly un-Hollywood films.

Thursday November 8
Orphans at 3:30pm
Texas DIY Shorts at 5:30pm
Quiet City at 8pm

Sunday November 11
Quietly On By at 1:30pm
Low and Behold at 5:30pm
LOL at 7:30

All films play at The Four Day Weekend Theater 312 Houston Street Fort Worth, TX 76102.

“Mumblecore, for all its categorical faults and flash-in-the-pan publicity, is representative of a definite stirring the in the American independent film scene. What’s frustrating about the grouping, however, is that its inclusiveness is always in flux. What constitutes a Mumblecore film? The lack of regulation both defines and invalidates the category; indeed, there are films presented in this very program that haven’t previously been associated with Mumblecore, and yet some aspect of them lets them fit into the previously established body of work. We could run down the general checklist of traits - DV cinematography, relationship issues, white male twentysomethings improvising on both sides of the camera - and find exceptions to every rule. Lots of them, in fact. These films are not interchangeable.

Their solidarity, then, comes not from aesthetic but from conviction. The one trait shared by all the filmmakers in this program is a persistence of vision, and an undying will towards that vision. They finance their own work. They make their films because they want to, and perhaps because they have to. They do it over and over again.

And, slowly but surely, their work is being recognized. These filmmakers make films that mean something to them. That the term Mumblecore has caught on suggests that they might mean something to everyone else as well.”
--David Lowery, Filmmaker and Film Blogger


LOL (81 min) Directed by Joe Swanberg Written by: Kevin Bewersdorf, Joe Swanberg, C. Mason Wells
Starring: Kevin Bewersdorf, Joe Swanberg, C. Mason Wells, Tipper Newton, and Brigid Reagan
Alex, Tim, and Chris view the women in their lives through the dimensions of a computer screen or the lens of a camera-phone, as they struggle to balance their online fantasies and addictions with the demands of real life. This raw, witty and painfully intimate feature explores masculinity in the new millennium, a time when young men are trying to decipher the mixed messages of modern relationships and technology. "LOL is a somewhat stunning mirror on the ways we say things without using words. [Swanberg] reveals himself to be one of the most emotionally astute young filmmakers working today."-

Low and Behold (89 min) Directed by Zack Godshall Written by Barlow Jacobs and Zack Godshall
Starring: Barlow Jacobs, Robert Longstreet, and Eddie Rouse
Low and Behold is about an uninspired young man who takes a job doing insurance claims on hurricane damaged houses in post-Katrina New Orleans- his life is dramatically altered when he's forced to deal with the mass destruction and loss that surrounds him. "...what makes Low and Behold so satisfying [is] it shows all sides of humanity. There’s not one emotion, but many... I never thought a movie about tragedy could be so funny. This film covers all aspects of humanity in a truly thoughtful way." -CinemATL

Orphans (80 min) Written and Directed by Ry Russo-Young
Starring: James Katherine Flynn and Lily Wheelwright
Orphans tells the story of two estranged sisters who come together for a birthday celebration and are unexpectedly trapped in the world of loneliness. This wonderfully evocative and mercurial film depicts a compelling relationship that exists in an unusual and visceral world. "...A strong drama of heartache with two lead performances that are honest, blemishes and all…"Orphans" is the start of a promising directing career for Russo-Young, a true discovery…”

Quiet City (78 min) Written and Directed by Aaron Katz
Starring: Erin Fisher, Cris Lankenau, Sarah Hellman, Joe Swanberg, and Tucker Stone
Jamie's lost. She's in New York to see a friend, but the friend is nowhere to be found. Charlie just quit his job and isn’t sure what's next. Their paths cross late at night on an empty subway platform, and an unlikely connection is formed. Together they share 24 hours drifting from diners, to city parks, to a party deep in the heart of Brooklyn. “Quiet City is as close to authentic human interaction as I have ever seen on film.”- Arts Editor

Quietly On By (87 min) Written and Directed by Frank V. Ross
Starring: Anthony Baker, Denise Blank, Debi Hulka, Jennifer Knox, Danielle Ostrowsky, and Lonnie Phillips
Two months ago, his girlfriend left him. One month ago, he lost both of his jobs after a nervous breakdown. Single, lonely, and jobless, Aaron expends his time and energy nurturing a long standing crush on his best friend Sara. If he manages to get out of bed, Aaron may mow the lawn, or he may reconstruct Stonehenge with a set of encyclopedias. Aaron sees something approaching on the horizon. Whether it's his future or his doom, apparently it drives a white SUV. "Ross beautifully captures the longing and aimlessness of a certain emotional moment all of us have experienced in our lives. It's a really wonderful film." --Ray Carney author of Cassavetes on Cassavetes and other books.

Texas DIY Shorts:
Do-it-yourself filmmaking like the Mumblecore Movement relies heavily on the helping hands of friends. From acting, helping out on the crew, getting the word out on the Internet or just giving feedback, it’s the interconnectivity of fellow filmmakers that’s at the heart of DIY Film. This collection of shorts is a prime example. Hometown filmmaker James M. Johnston presents this group of defiantly un-Hollywood short films from Texas filmmaking friends (mostly from DFW) including the Fort Worth premier of his film GDMF.
Booty Recall by Yen Tan (13 min)
A last-minute cancellation prompts a desperately horny man to find a companion for the evening.
Coda by Yen Tan (7 min)
A man takes his dog out for a last stroll through the neighborhood.
GDMF by James M. Johnston (29 min)
An exotic dancer's personal and professional lives are catastrophically blurred after a dramatic coincidence at a private party.
Grammy’s by Bryan Poyser (17 min)
Two brothers have a really bad time on a fishing trip until a stranger makes them a bizarre but lucrative offer.
Lion’s Den by Frank Mosley (15 min)
A group of old friends are hanging out when one of them is accused of having masturbated in his friend's bathroom. This indictment escalates into a night of judgment that tests the truth of their words and the strength of all their friendships.
The Outlaw Son by David Lowery (11 min)
An experimental autobiography about those long moments spent sitting on the precipice of adulthood. Two old friends spend a long, cold night driving around, listening to music and remembering how things might have been.
The Stranger by Clayton Charles Liford, esq. (10 min)
Albert Camus' compelling and troubling tale of a disaffected, apparently amoral young man's murder trial, retold through a post modernistic lens of consumerism, and with a neo-fascist's eye on issues such as global warming and Myspace. (Category--Serious Drama-Allegorical Parable.)