Dreaming an explosion of film 

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First of all, a quick reminder about CineFestival’s Screenwriters Spotlight Competition, which will give $1,000 to the winning screenplay: the deadline is November 4. In addition to the big bucks, the winner gets travel and lodging to San Antonio during the festival (February 25 to March 3, 2012) and a staged reading of their screenplay. It would be so cool if a local won it, so hurry and get submission forms at guadalupeculturalarts.org or withoutabox.com.

OK, to the point: Something happened last week that made me dream. No big deal, just a simple dream of a proliferation of smaller, unconventional venues showing local films (or really any film for the pleasure of local film enthusiasts). The detonator was the visit to the Current’s office by Juan Gonzalez and Joseph Torres, co-authors of News for All the People: The Epic Story of Race and the American Media. At one point during their talk, they mentioned early radio pioneer Pedro J. Gonzales, who fought against mass deportations in the ’30s in Los Angeles. His is a fascinating story, but I was surprised to see very few in the audience knew about him, and even less had any idea of Break of Dawn (Rompe el alba), the superb 1988 TV film directed by Isaac Artenstein. I immediately thought of the Esperanza Peace and Justice Center as a logical venue for that unknown gem, and Esperanza director Graciela Sánchez seemed interested.

Or maybe (and the dream continues), if Esperanza passes, maybe the folks at the monthly UTSA Downtown campus movies, which have been screening Argentine, Mexican, and Chilean movies for four years (the last of which, Spain’s Black Bread, attracted about 80 people who were treated to a very good flick, a discussion, and refreshments, all free of charge) could secure a copy.

And I kept dreaming, and imagining which local film I would like to see. I didn’t have to think too hard: in an era where way too many filmmakers think they’re funny, it is time the real funny people do a feature. People like Comedia A Go-Go, in my humble opinion the best sketch comedians in San Antonio. Check their Law & Order spoof on YouTube and tell me if you wouldn’t like to see a feature from these guys.

No pressure. Just saying.

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