Wednesday, November 9, 2016

The Ohio Independent Film Festival comes bop-bop-boppin' along, November 10-11

Okay, so Trump won the presidency, and we are likely doomed. It’s okay; we would be doomed under President Hillary Clinton as well, just not quite so entertainingly. Chin up, troops, Cleveland has come back from worse disasters, catastrophes and setbacks than this. There was the time…. (open calendar to any date at random in last 200 years).

Or take as inspiration the Ohio Independent Film Festival, AKA the film festival That Will Not Die. The go-to venue for local filmmaking, workshops, staged readings and, of course, screenings, it started in a Tremont gallery-storefront as the Off-Hollywood Flick Fest in 1993. At one point it happened four times per year!

It later moved to the Cleveland Public Theatre campus for a number of years, then Atlas Lakeshore Cinemas, under a rotating management and a morphing format. Now it comes to the Bop Stop jazz-music venue at 2920 Detroit Avenue in Cleveland.

The festival is preceded on Thursday night by a 6 p.m. reception with longtime Cleveland avant-garde independent filmmaker (and champion of celluloid film) Robert Banks Jr., who has been with the OIFF since the beginning. There is also live music. Admission to that is free but donations are appreciated.

The real OIFF happens Friday night at 7 p.m. with a one-evening marathon of global features and short subjects, opening with the Iranian drama ATOUSA'S LAUGHTER, which was shot entirely aboard a moving train in Tehran in five days (as Robert Banks always says, all the time, "Awww man, WE could have made that!"). A feature-length set of shorts wraps up things after midnight.

Admission is $20. For more information go online to or call (216) 771-6551.

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