Twenty-five selections, culled from more than 200 entries from 21 states and several foreign countries, will be screened starting at 7 p.m. All are less than 20 minutes long. This year, the films will be juried--the jurors include event coordinators John Spiak and Bob Pece--and those judged best will be given awards.
But the real reason to go is simply to savor being outside on a spring evening in Arizona, watching some fledgling cinematic efforts, perhaps--who knows?--being present at the birth pang of a new Griffith or Welles. This year's eclectic mix includes documentaries, "pseudo-documentaries," satires, fantasies, animations and abstractions.
Probably the highest-profile selection is Walk This Way, directed by ASU/Scottsdale Community College student Chris Sheridan. Winner of a 1997 Student Academy Award Gold Medal, the film tells, very quickly and in a breezy, humorous manner, the story of Sheridan's adaptation to life after an airplane crash left him in a wheelchair.
Also on the schedule is New Yorker Mark Edginton's anna in the sky, about the use of magic in the service of unrequited love; Hitomi Asahi's light-and-shadow study Untitled (a message); David Glassman and Joseph Dunn's satirical DLBWA, about a reformed serial killer's return to the scene of his crimes; and Without You by Ryan McCullough, the youngest filmmaker represented in the contest--he was just 14 when he completed this animated work.
And, unlike the drive-in, you don't have to hide yourself in the trunk of your car if you're broke--admission is free.
--M. V. Moorhead
The Short Film and Video Festival begins at 7 p.m. Friday, April 24, at Nelson Fine Arts Center, 10th Street and Mill in Tempe. For more information, call 965-2787.