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November 15, 2002     Cape Gazette
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November 15, 2002

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CAPE GAZET'I Friday, Nov. 15. Nov. 21, 2002 - 91 Rehoboth film society board member An- drea Andrus, right, welcomes "Variety" film critic Eddie Cocktrell to the festival Shown scouring the festi- val program (l-r) are Marie Adams, Gene Dvornick and Wes Rogers. Veronica Radalin, board member, left, and Sara McCraw, member, help direct the crowds to the correct show. Director Max Raab, left, joins Joe Bilucio on stage at Dogfish. Raab, famous for acqu/ring and directing Clock- work Orange,  rot/red from narrative films two decades ago, but recently took on a documentary film project. His fin- + ished project on the Philadelphia Mummers, "Strut," was a fest fare. The Sony Lounge was a hot spot of the festi- val, especially for late night happy hour Friday and Saturday. Shown are (l-r) Vincent Hughes, Reid Dudley and vol- unteer bartender John Hammett enjoying some brew. Film fest Continued fi'om page 90 sessive compulsive character and a gay love story - as the premiere films. The Audience Awards were an- nounced at the Closing Party, held at the birthplace of the Rehoboth Beach Film Society. Just five years ago a small group discus- sion at the Dogfish Head Brew- ings & Eats bar led to the devel- opment of the RBFS and the an- nual Independent Film Festival. The reconfigured group recon- vened there Nov. 10, now with nearly 200 of their closest friends, for the awards, one of the festival highlights. The Best Feature designation went to "Autumn Spring," a Czech film which recounts the tragicomic tale of a youthful 75- year-old man who refuses to ree- oncile himself to living as an old man. Czech director Vladmir Michalek presents the character in a number of richly comic situa- tions, full of both gentle and black Board member Murray Archibald, left, and Maggie Ottato armed with the sta- ples of film going, a program and popcorn. humor, that aptly demonstrate the art of living. "You should know that this was extremely close, four films scored over a four rating," said Bilancio. The other top, fa- vorites were "A Song for Martin," "Elling," and 'qe Trip?' "The Trip" went on to place first for Best Debut Film. The + RBFS President Beth Hochholzer, left, and Joan Glass sell raffle tickets during the festival. debut film of director Miles Swain, "The Trip" chronicles the 13 year romantic journey of two mismatched men. Their romance is set in the political context of the turbulent 1970s and 1980s, in- cluding the homophobic pursuits of Anita Bryant and the conserva- tive administration of Ronald Reagan. In addition to a wonder- fail story, the movie has a superb soundtrack and great wardrobes. In another close contest, "War Photographer" won for Best Doc- umentary, "War Photographer" is an intimate insight into the world of war photographer James Naehtwey Director Christian Frei followed the renowned photogra- pher for two years into wars in In- donesia, Kosovo and Palestine to make the film and reveal facets of Naehtwey's life work. For the first time in the history of movies, the audience participates in the act of shooting war photos through a special video micro camera at- tached to Nactwey's photo cam- era. "War Photographer" w trailed by "Strut." Also, festival stunner "In the Shadows of Motown" was not eligible for an Audience Award due to a regulation that 200 people must see and vote on the film, impossible as the film was only available for one showing. Best Short went to "Leonard," an intense film from Scotland di- rected by Brian Kelly. "Leonard" depicts the insular world of a man struggling with an obsessive com- pulsive disorder, whose complete- ly regimented existence is disrupt- ed by the appearance of his long lost son. More stories than ever were found behind the scenes at the fes rival this year. An impressive se- lection of special programs drew record crowds, including Kid's Day, Done in Delaware films, a panel discussion with the writer, producer, editor and actress of "Secretary" and an inside scoop seminar with "Variety" film re- viewer Eddie Cockrell. Cockrell even offered a review of the festival. "In some ways, a great festival is an accident of ge- ography and you are fortunate to have a multiplex open for this event. But you also have very im- pressive administration and an ex- Claudia Ratner takes a break from the kids' films for some arts and craft& Veteran movie buffs Laura Simon, left, and Cathin Bish- op once again set the record for viewing the most films. The duo took in 18 movies. cellent film lineup," he said. High praise from a regular at the Berlin, Karlovy Vary, Montreal and Toronto film festivals. Early and Bilancio, the only full time staff of the film society, are the first to pass on the praise. 'q'he Movies at Midway staff is beyond amazing. They work tire- lessly and make it seem effortless, they don't care that no one sees them breaking down films at 4 a.m. or keeping all the films straight. The have been a great source of suggestions and ideas," said Bilancio. EArly added deep appreciation for the festival vol- unteers. "I like to say there are two events going on. Of course, there is this festival of film goers but there is also a community of dedicated and enthusiastic volun- teers who just love what they are doing, it is like a festival of volun- teers," said Early. A volunteer ap- preciation party is planned for Saturday, Nov. 23, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Breakers Hotel Con- ference Center to celebrate the success of 2002 and begin the work of bringing the film festival to life.