South Texas Cinema 

Before we jump into what’s coming up filmwise in an apparently light November, here’s a report from Ashley Lindstrom, who attended some of the goings-on at the first-annual late-October ¡Adelante

Before we jump into what’s coming up filmwise in an apparently light November, here’s a report from Ashley Lindstrom, who attended some of the goings-on at the first-annual late-October ¡Adelante! Film Forum, a three-day conference on Latino and independent media hosted by the National Association of Latino Independent Producers:

The weekend of October 19-21 saw the ¡Adelante! Film Forum come and go. Activities included panels on media-making and distribution, practice pitch-sessions, and film screenings. Anne Lewis kicked off the screenings with a rough cut of her documentary, Morristown, at the Blue Star Brewery. Lewis has an incredible gift for gathering intimately honest information; Morristown is an insightful look at the relationship between Mexican and American workers (and how outsourcing to near-slave-labor screws everyone), with Morristown, Tennessee, as a case-in-point.

Following the doc, forumers shuffled over to the Blue Star Arts Complex for the Mercury Latino Lens Short Film Challenge, featuring six student and semi-professional Latino filmmakers (five of the six were women, bucking the national trend). Not surprisingly, the student films were the most outrageous and enjoyable; Xochitl Dorsey’s Tears and Tortillas was the most notable standout. Radius Café hosted a screening and DVD-release party for Ricardo Mendoza’s Escape de los Santos the next day. Based on a true story, the film, plays a bit like Brokedown Palace: Mexico, but the unending hopelessness of the plot does not overshadow fine acting and one particularly fun surreal sequence.

Speaking of local-indie-film screenings: On Sunday, November 12, the Alamo Drafthouse Westlakes will twice present Sandwich, by filmmaker and Northwest Vista College sociology instructor Kevin Williams. The film concerns itself with Molly, a 30-year-old painter and single parent who must decide whether to continue caring for her Alzheimer’s-afflicted mother or place her in a facility, the last of which would allow Molly to pursue her dream of becoming a professional artist. Screenings are at 3 and 7 p.m.; filmmaker Q&A sessions will follow each, and members of the band Elle will perform a song composed for the Sandwich soundtrack.

Got a short film (doesn’t everybody)? Think you can make one? Well, you can — and if you get your act together by month’s end, you might be able to get said short viewed by sundry friends and strangers. Cobble together your 30-minutes-or-less, PG-13 mini-movie, slap on a $15 entry fee, and ship it off to WOAI.com by December 1, and you might see your celluloid baby on San Antonio Living or Midnight Radio Theater. The top three shorts, as determined by judges, and the top two, as voted by online viewers, will receive awards. More info: Go to Woai.com and click on “Midnight Shorts Indie Film Festival,” under “Featured.”

As always, for late-breaking and additional SA film news, check the San Antonio Film Commision’s website: Sanantoniovisit.com/film.

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