A Day at the Movies 

Virginia's independent films get their own festival at the Byrd.

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The spring bloom of film festivals is upon us — the French Film and James River celebrations have just ended. People who haven't had enough get one more chance for cinema indulgence, and this time it's all local.

The second annual Virginia Independent Film Festival, held at the Byrd Theatre, features 12 works from Virginia natives in three categories: documentaries, short films and feature films. Sponsored by the Virginia Film Office to benefit the Virginia Production Alliance, the festival was created to improve media production of all kinds in Virginia. It comes at a time when Virginia's film industry is losing projects to states that offer better film incentives.

Because the selected filmmakers represent every major geographic region of the state, enthusiasm is high. “I think it's a great outlet for aspiring filmmakers to showcase their talent,” says Jude Fageas of Midlothian, co-producer of “Concept of Beauty,” a 13-minute film tackling racism and domestic abuse through the eyes of a juvenile delinquent. “There are a lot of limitations people have constructed in their mind regarding how films should be. This gives filmmakers a chance to venture out and not be misunderstood in their craft.”

The spectrum of topics covered in the 10-hour festival is about as colorful as a Kandinsky. At $10 for an all-day pass, it could well be the best cure for moviephiles fighting the recession blues. There seems to be something for all tastes, too.

Lucas Krost of Richmond directed “The Community Model in Corrections,” a documentary that investigates the faults of our correctional system and possible models to improve on them. “In the making of the movie, within four days,” Krost says, “our crew was completely changed.”

Paul Busetti of Alexandria, co-producer of “Cannibal Cheerleader Camp,” put out a slightly different type of flick. “There's nothing better than tube-socks soaked in blood,” he says. S

The second annual Virginia Independent Film Festival is Sunday, April 26, at the Byrd Theatre, noon-10 p.m. Tickets are $5-$10. Visit www.film.virginia.com.



Helping you plan bathroom breaks between screenings.

“Saving Grace” Written, directed and produced by Eric Alan Futterman, “Saving Grace” looks at how laser technology is being used to preserve Richmond's decaying Monumental Church and the memory of 72 people who perished on that site in a theater fire almost 200 years ago. Noon.

“The Flyingest Flying” Written by Josh Criss of Arlington, “The Flyingest Flying” is a feature-length documentary that explores the origins of hang gliding and how darn difficult is must be to learn. 2 p.m.

“Tide” Co-produced by Richmonder Jacob Dodd, “Tide” follows Hal, an unmotivated everyman, and Anna, a carefree child. Together, they discover the universe in a speedy 10 minutes. Short films series, 4-6 p.m.

“Cannibal Cheerleader Camp” Straight out of Alexandria, this film, co-produced by Paul Busetti, Ian Albetski and Colin Lamb, focuses on tube socks, shower scenes and the sexiest cannibals you ever shared a lodge with. Short films series, 4-6 p.m.

“La Vie est Courte (Life is Short)” Representing the Burke community, “La Vie est Courte” is the story of Claire and her crush on a boy who could change her life. To text or not to text. Short films series, 4-6 p.m.



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