Off Track Betty

Off Track Betty

A story shot on 16mm film by Kansas City native Clayton Dean Smith. In a rapidly changing city, a woman realizes she no longer recognizes the neighborhood that she calls home. Unsure about her future, she is confronted by a young man with a direct link to her past. A story of love, memory, and what it means to move forward. With the closing of NYC’s last film lab, Off Track Betty is one of the last films ever to be processed in New York.

The Dog Film Festival

The Dog Film Festival

The first-ever NY Dog Film Festival™ will be coming to town as part of Kansas City FilmFest at the Country Club Plaza on April 7 and April 9th. The philanthropic NY Dog Film Festival celebrates the remarkable bond between dogs and their people, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting KC Pet Project!

Brad Cuts Loose

Brad, an uptight office drone, seemingly discovers the perfect vehicle for letting off steam when an advertisement for a business catering to his innermost desires pops up one morning on his computer. Brad’s subsequent visit to the business and encounter with its receptionist Janine, however, don’t quite go as planned.

Getting Ed Laid

Getting Ed Laid

Starring Ed Asner and Jean Smart
An 85 year old professor hires a hooker for his last hurrah. Afraid that taking Viagra will kill him, he’s waiting for a call back from a cardiologist when a quirky older hooker shows up. Funny happens as these two lonely people discover – no matter what you age, life can surprise you.

Inception of a Jihadi

Inception of a Jihadi

“Genius is a terrible thing.” Caitlin Thomas was a dancer, writer and woman behind the famous Welsh poet, Dylan Thomas. She partied as hard as him, advised him, loved him, kept him sober enough to write and brought up their family on no money, finally surviving his early death. Very little is written about Caitlin, her role in their legend or her recovery, and most portrayals are laughably inaccurate. This is Caitlin’s lyrical version of her life with Dylan, adapted from a one woman play written by Welsh poet Phil Bowen. The film has won best director, best actress and best musical score and nominated for over 20 awards. It is shot in the beautiful town of Laugharne in Wales and breaks many traditional film conventions. The film stars Sally George (recently in the West End and National Theatre Show – People Places and Things) as Caitlin and Griff Rhys Jones (the renowned actor and comedian), as the voice of Dylan Thomas.

Contigo

Contigo

Contigo is a waltz with family and tradition, close to the South Texas border. While the Alamo has been designated, by the United Nations, as a World Heritage site, equally noteworthy is the cultural heritage in the lower Rio Grande Valley. Contigo is a Sunday afternoon in San Antonio and a weekend at a conjunto music festival in San Benito. The project is based on a song written by one of the pioneers of conjunto music, Don Santiago Jiménez. It is performed in this video by his son, Santiago Jiménez Jr.

Crime of the Big Leagues

Crime of the Big Leagues

As virtually everyone knows, Jackie Robinson joined the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947, and broke the color ban in baseball. But few Americans know Lester Rodney — the sports editor of the Daily Worker, New York’s Communist Party newspaper, who prepared the ground, repeatedly calling the ban “un-American” and “the Crime of the Big Leagues.” . For over ten years, Lester Rodney’s columns put unrelenting pressure on baseball’s establishment. Who would have thought that a communist writer would become the loudest voice in the fight to desegregate America’s national pastime?

Dakota’s Pride 2.0

Dakota’s Pride 2.0

From the dark depths of the moment you learn that your child has Down Syndrome, tough questions arise. This engaging, character-driven documentary aims to celebrate differences, spread understanding, and highlight the raw beauty within every individual with special needs. Those featured in the film have distinct hardships, dreams, and paths of achievement. Now, a decade after the first film, their vast array of milestones and accomplishments will warm your soul. The outstanding individuals are able to graduate college, drive cars, receive recognition, find love, and show great courage. Dakota’s Pride 2.0 isn’t all blue skies, but it highlights that every individual with Down Syndrome is unique and special, just like the families they are born into. The film allows viewers to form a first-hand understanding of the reality of raising a child with Down syndrome, all while eliminating the broad and damaging stereotypes too often assigned to people with special needs.

Describe Me

Describe Me

Mari and Julia were the best of friends up until the eighth grade when Julia threatened to beat up a sixth grader. This causes her to have three months of suspension, start to lose friends, and become less popular, so she goes after her replacement, Mari, and bullies her far into depression.

Bolos

The youthful folly of wanting to grow up too fast, as a girl and her little sister try to collect accoutrements from the once Wild West. The short/narrative music video is set to a reorganization of composer Antonín Dvořák’s popular 12th String Quartet. The piece, written on a visit to the United States in 1893, incorporates impressions of the country’s melting-pot folk music and its various ethnic influences. The film blends Cowboy Pop culture and Southwestern American Indian motifs and design. It was filmed on location in Panguitch (“Big Fish” in Paiute), Utah, an hour northwest of the famous Monument Valley.

Evil’s Evil Cousin

During Pastor Bob’s service one of the congregation takes a turn for the worse, inadvertently birthing himself out of himself; resulting in the arrival of his evil twin – ‘Evil Terry’. Pastor Bob takes this as a sign from God, a test, a renewal of his lacking belief – perhaps – perhaps not. Food fights, trouser removal and shotgun exorcisms ensure and like all good things, the story ends in a sing song.

Grocery Store Action Movie

Grocery Store Action Movie

Alex is in the express checkout lane at the grocery store when he realizes with horror that he has forgotten the all-important crackers. With his dinner guests already on their way over, Alex must risk life and limb to achieve the impossible: locate the salty snacks before losing his place next in line. A hilarious send-up of action movie clichés created by and starring three-time Canadian Comedy Award-winning sketch duo Peter n’ Chris.

Impairable

“Impairable” is a short film created by a team of over 40 freshmen film students at the Savannah College of Art and Design. The film follows a handicapped adolescent as he tries to win the heart of a beautiful girl.

Jammin’ Shanghai

Jammin’ Shanghai

The glamorous and colorful Jazz scene of Shanghai has been long forgotten.Alec Haavik, an American Saxophone player, came to Shanghai in 2002 and joined The JZ Club – founded by local jazz bassist Ren Yuqing, which has revived the jazz culture in the bustling city. However, following twelve happy years at its location, it has to move out, but not before one last commemorative gig.In this film, all the local and international musicians and audience gather together to celebrate the last night of JZ Club. The owner of the JZ Club Ren Yuqing reveals some important question: Why Jazz? Why Shanghai? And how to restore the Jazz culture.

KOJO: A Short Documentary

KOJO: A Short Documentary

KOJO is a short documentary on gifted twelve year old jazz drummer Kojo Odu Roney. In this candid interview, Kojo reflects on his tireless work ethic, the current state of Jazz music, learning from his mentor and father, Jazz saxophonist Antoine Roney and much more. Kojo’s charisma, sensibility, and passion are as mesmerizing as his drum skills and for the first time in this documentary he shares it with you.

Home

Home

When the last old hound dog passes away, a solitary farmer must get used to the absence of his constant companion. As the only one left on the run-down family farm, he clings to his tired routine as a way to fill the days. He finds that sometimes life is more painful than death.

I Love New York

I Love New York

In a city where everyone’s got an angle, how does you survive? After an NYC first-timer befriends a savvy street girl on the train, she takes him on a fantastical ride through all the city’s pitfalls. But nothing’s free in this town, so tighten up your hustle or you might just get hustled yourself.

Joan

Joan

A portrait of a resilient woman reflecting on her life’s adversity. A portrait of a woman whose grit and disposition conquer great adversity. At a young age, Joan always wanted a big family and a place on the ocean. By the age of 20 she was diagnosed with sarcoma and had to face hard choices. After 60 years, 22 surgeries and a beautiful life, she reflects on her incredible journey.

Langston’s Lawrence

Langston’s Lawrence

While at Lawrence’s Central Junior High School, Langston Hughes challenged his teacher when she seated all the Black children in a single row, at the back of the classroom. In an act of civil disobedience, he made and placed cards on the Black students’ desks that said “Jim Crow Row.” Assisted by a friend, he threw the extras out of the window and onto the school yard. In retribution, the school expelled him and his co-conspirator.

Langston’s Lawrence explores the meaning of this event for Hughes’s development as writer, social activist, and champion of human rights.

Montage: Great Film Composers and the Piano

Montage: Great Film Composers and the Piano

The stars of this film have been nominated for 73 Academy Awards and won 9. Their films have grossed over $20 billion worldwide. You know their work. But do you know them? Montage: Great Film Composers and the Piano chronicles what happened when celebrated pianist Gloria Cheng challenged the world’s greatest film composers – Williams, Newman, Giacchino, Broughton, Desplat and Davis – to write original pieces for solo piano. No movie. No orchestra. Just a composer and the blank page. Be a fly on the wall for these once-in-a-lifetime recording sessions that profile these titans of film music like we’ve never seen them before.

Les Cloÿs

Les Cloÿs

Aly, Azzedine, Nadir, and Sophiane are friends who spend time in a park in the 18th arrondissement of Paris on a street called Rue des Cloÿs. They communicate with each other through the universal languages of soccer and a collaborative form of slang called Verlan and Argot. The movie uses playful animations to illustrate the transformation of traditional words into Verlan and Argot words. The protagonists are of immigrant descent and belong to a demographic that is sometimes stereotyped as being violent and criminal. In “Les Cloÿs,” they tell their own stories with their own words.

Make Them Believe

Make Them Believe

A Russian wrestler enchanted by the United States plays the ultimate villain as the stars and stripes-clad character “American Hope” in Moscow’s underground wrestling ring. It’s a Kremlin-run world far from the pageantry of USA pay-per-view popularity where the star-spangled red, white, and blue means the evil enemy and wrestlers slam into decrepit mats located in dingy basements. But Tim Maltser still dreams of becoming an American wrestling star like the larger-than-life WWF heroes of his childhood – and now he finally has his chance to gain notoriety by performing in a critical match for the coveted Moscow Championship Belt.

MSALA (SON)

MSALA (SON)

Showcasing a little-known tribe in north-east India called the Uchoi, this film follows the steps of a young boy in search of his father. The audience will experience a bit of traditional Uchoi culture and dress. This is the first time Kokborok, the native Uchoi language, will have been featured in an American film festival.

Love Somehow

Love Somehow

“Genius is a terrible thing.” Caitlin Thomas was a dancer, writer and woman behind the famous Welsh poet, Dylan Thomas. She partied as hard as him, advised him, loved him, kept him sober enough to write and brought up their family on no money, finally surviving his early death. Very little is written about Caitlin, her role in their legend or her recovery, and most portrayals are laughably inaccurate. This is Caitlin’s lyrical version of her life with Dylan, adapted from a one woman play written by Welsh poet Phil Bowen. The film has won best director, best actress and best musical score and nominated for over 20 awards. It is shot in the beautiful town of Laugharne in Wales and breaks many traditional film conventions. The film stars Sally George (recently in the West End and National Theatre Show – People Places and Things) as Caitlin and Griff Rhys Jones (the renowned actor and comedian), as the voice of Dylan Thomas.

So Here I Am

So Here I Am

A former scientist, living after the world infrastructure has collapsed tries to build a machine to send her back to save it. She struggles with being alone in a chaotic and dark world, as she focuses only on one goal.

Cat

Cat

CAT follows a young woman on a walkabout of sorts. She struggles with the visions and voices in her head, wrestles with god, discovers friendship and transforms the way she sees herself. The film’s haltingly quiet visual style conjures the character’s psychotic episodes, against the backdrop of breathtaking Oregon sites. Putting a sympathetic face to schizophrenia, ultimately, CAT is a story of acceptance and hope.

Chester

Chester

Chester is a short drama comedy that tells the story of a older foreign gentlemen being reluctantly placed in a nursing home in the north of England. Unable to speak english, the man is perceived as a John Doe, and therefore has trouble engaging with other residents and staff. However over time and through the game of chess and the aid of a nurse Kelly, he is able to make friends and enjoy life again. However unfortunately a chess piece goes missing one day and everything begins to go back to the way it was, until ultimately a change of events puts everything right again.

A Doll’s Eyes

A Doll’s Eyes

In his personal essay film, filmmaker Jonathan Wysocki searches for the meaning behind his lifelong obsession with the movie ‘Jaws.’ Wysocki recounts the terror that kept him out of the ocean during his childhood and the dark desire that drew him back as an adult. He returns to the ocean to discover a fear deeper than the shark stalking his imagination.

A Children’s Song

A Children’s Song

When two students competing for a music scholarship discover that their original compositions are based on a single family song, both are determined to prove ownership, leading them to uncover the long lost true origin of the melody: a story of salvation and hope when over 20,000+ Jews emigrated to Shanghai during WWII.

Albedo Absolute

Albedo Absolute

Dazzling contemporary allegorical fairytale adventure of Violet and Savannah, two sisters who disobey their parent’s warning by venturing into a brooding forest. There, they discover a large plug wedged into the forest floor. What lurks beneath the plug? The girls cannot resist finding out. Their curiosity sends them down a kaleidoscopic drain pipe and into a strange and startling journey of no return.

Adherence

Adherence

Over the course of one day in an inpatient psychiatric ward, we witness the intertwined stories of a man on the verge of discharge, an Orthodox Jewish woman whose newborns have strained her marriage, and a man whose treatment at the hands of the mental health system has devastating consequences.

A Dimly Lit Room

A Dimly Lit Room

In a dimly lit room, Asher meets Persephone. What she wants, what she threatens, and what she has to offer are the clues Asher has to go on in order to solve the riddle in front of him and save his life. If he cannot figure out what is going on and what to do about it, it could be his end.

Amazing Grace

Amazing Grace

“Amazing Grace” explores the treatment of women in the legal industry from the 1940’s through today. Specifically, peers, professors and law firms told Grace Day that women weren’t welcome in the field of law. She was the lone woman in her law school class in 1948 and endured torment from fellow students and teachers who believed women did not belong in the classroom or the courtroom. A number of Missouri attorneys and judges are featured in this trailblazer film. You’ll fall in love with St. Joe’s Grace Day, a woman who beat the odds and won over her enemies.

Pushing

A homeless man, living on the fringes of society, feels out of touch with the speed and exclusivity of his surroundings. He retreats into his imagination to a time where he was better capable of fitting in and was accepted by others. When he is disrupted by a police officer, he initially sees him as a grave threat. However, through an act of kindness, he learns that this particular officer may truly want to help him. In return, he offers forgiveness and shares a bit of himself and how he experiences the world in his own unique way.

Psychotic Break

Psychotic Break

Struggling 20-something writer Gwen craves her successful older sister’s love and approval after her essay on the Rwandan genocide is accepted for publication, but when her sister brutally trashes her accomplishment, Gwen spirals into madness — losing not only her hold on reality but her very identity as a woman of conscience.

Promise

Promise

Deep in Yunnan, China, simple peasant parents have raised a smart boy. But life for the family has become impossible financially, so the parents take jobs in a distant city. Promising to return on the new year, they leave their only son to live on his own. Loneliness sets in and the boy stumbles upon a lost piglet. He raises the pig as a member of his family. As the new year gets closer, the boy is forced to make a difficult choice: sell the pig and make a special dinner for parents , or keep his best and only friend.

Portraits of Fright

Portraits of Fright

Horror tells us that our belief in security is delusional, and the monsters are all around us. At least, that’s what Horror Photographer, Joshua Hoffine believes and after seeing his work, I am compelled to agree. Joshua has been featured by The Huffington Post, he’s worked with actors like Doug Jones and is a pioneer of Horror photography using practical effects. Take an exclusive look at the process behind the scenes of this delightfully grotesque horror photography.

Out Here in Kansas

Out Here in Kansas

Why would someone choose to be gay? And why would they do it in Kansas, a state notoriously tough on gay people? “Out Here In Kansas” is the directorial debut of a longtime journalist who explores the tumultuous relationship between Christians and the LGBT community in America’s heartland. The film takes a turn when the filmmaker himself unexpectedly becomes part of the story.

Parallel Lives

Parallel Lives

An opposing vision of the value system in the modern world. Parallel Lives addresses the issue of just how distorted our values and priorities are in the 21st Century. This social conscience film is an opposing vision of how the world could and should perhaps be. In doing so, it questions our approach to inequality.

Soy Cubana

Soy Cubana

Winners of the 2016 CUBADISCO Award for best vocal group, the Vocal Vidas are a female a cappella quartet from Santiago de Cuba – the cradle of Afro-Cuban music. This documentary explores their unique sound and tells the story of crafting a musical career in a society in which artistic merit is not measured solely by economic success.

The Bouquet

The Bouquet

On a deserted road, driving an antique car, Stéphane hurries up to a wedding whom he is the witness. Terribly late, he realizes that he forgot the bride’s bouquet. Fortune favors him when he has the opportunity to take possession of a funeral bouquet tied on a tree. But fate takes it out on him when his GPS loses signal. Unable to get his bearings, he will have to take with him the only person who crosses his path, and who is able to help : Charlotte…who just placed her funeral bouquet on the tree…

[solitary]

[solitary]

Department of Corrections Inmate identification. Facility: State Supermax. Location: Segregated Housing Unit (Solitary Confinement). Inmate/Cell No.: SHU-#B1-67. Sex: M. H/W: 6’/170. Race: Blk. Category: Security Lvl 3 (High Threat).

The Bus Trip

The Bus Trip

Sarah is invited to show her film in Israel as part of a film festival bus trip. She is hoping for political discussions and friendship, except the conversation stops each time she brings up the occupation of Palestine. So instead, Sarah talks to her dead dad over a noisy phone line.

The Radical Jew

Baruch Marzel is one of the leaders of Israel’s far-right. Living in Hebron, the most violent city in the Israel-Palestine conflict, his activism and antics have made him a household name within Israel, yet he remains relatively unknown outside the region. In this Errol Morris-esque film, Baruch invites us into his psyche, sharing with us the viewpoints and life experiences that have led the United States and Israeli governments to label him a terrorist.

WALK

WALK

The uplifting film WALK, written by Pulitzer Prize nominee Theresa Rebeck and directed by Mary-Pat Green, is a powerful and humorous look at life. During a chance encounter in the park, two strangers tackle life’s biggest questions. One challenging day – One woman’s journey with ALS.
WALK asks the question “When life hands you a difficult ride, what’s worth your time and what’s not?”

Twisted Sobriety

Twisted Sobriety

Two polar opposites collide in a financially turmoiled dystopian future where the western world is in economic chaos. The disparity and frustration between wealth and poverty is spiralling out of control.

Martin is a lonely social inept office worker that sees no joy in his fortunate circumstances. Chris is a former business executive turned homeless man. They collide socially and are locked together with imbalance, shrouded in uncertainty.

Town Teams: Bigger than Baseball

Town Teams: Bigger than Baseball

Town Teams: Bigger than Baseball, is a documentary short which shines the spotlight on the game in the late 1800s and early 1900s. ‘Town Teams’ examines why amateur and semi-pro baseball exploded in popularity in Kansas and across the U.S. The film explains how baseball became the ‘social media’ of its time. It connected people through athletic competition. But it grew to become much ‘Bigger than Baseball’ as towns across the state competed for highways, county seats, and economic development.

To Serve and Protect?

To Serve and Protect?

We see it all over the media, but excessive use of force by police isn’t new. We’ve known about the killings of men, women, and children of color too many times over the last few decades as a result of interactions with law enforcement. The only thing that is new is the video camera. Gandhi Brigade Youth Media worked with nine high school students to produce this documentary during a six week period over the summer of 2016.

The Grand Illusion

The Grand Illusion

35 years ago The Miami Hurricanes baseball team executed one of the all time great plays in College World Series history, the hidden ball trick! That never works. Especially in the College World Series, on national television, facing the greatest base stealer in NCAA history- Wichita State Shocker Phil Stephenson. The ‘Grand Illusion’ helped underdog Miami beat the powerhouse Wichita State Shockers team and propelled them to their first NCAA National Championship.

There Were Giants

There Were Giants

The city of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania has had an important yet largely unknown significance in the history of both race relations and baseball. In 1867, Harrisburg hosted a conference held by the Philadelphia ‘Base Ball’ Association which became the first baseball league to officially segregate black and white players. However in 1954, a Negro League team in Harrisburg called the Harrisburg Giants, became the first team in the Eastern Negro League to integrate white players on their team. This is their story.

The LaRosh Harvest Legacy

The LaRosh Harvest Legacy

Farming is more than a job, it’s a legacy. For 145 years, LaRoshes have been farming this land in north-central Kansas. Jhan LaRosh tells the story behind the harvest. Family, faith, and even the farm dog all have a prominent place. Wheat harvest is the culmination of the year’s work. In this film, the scenic beauty of the Sunflower State in summer is on full display. And when the classic combine comes out to play, you can see 55 years of grain harvesting technology running together.