There is a lot packed into the Free Range Film Barn the weekend of July 27 and 28, but that’s ok, the 30 foot tall ceiling is used to handling a lot of volume – although this year’s crops are more of the independent film variety than corn or soybeans.
Now in its ninth year, the Free Range Film Festival has just announced its 2012 harvest of 32 films nurtured without the use of pesticides, growth hormones or a distribution deal from a fancy-pants Hollywood studio.
“I’m thrilled about this year’s line-up” says Anne Dugan, one of the festival’s coordinators. “There are some great experimental and non-narrative work, four amazing features, and a surprisingly philosophical 8bit animation short.”
The Festival kicks off on Friday evening with the local premiere of “Wild Bill’s Run” – the incredible story of Willow River’s ‘Wild Bill Cooper’ and his trans-world snowmobile expedition.
Also screening Friday evening to coincide with the opening of the Olympic games in London is “Age of Champions” a documentary on the senior Olympics. The film includes a 102 year-old tennis player, an villainous team of southern basketball belles and a 80 year-old pole-vaulter trying to set a new world record. “Its inspiring but not in a cloying way” says festival co-organizer, Anne Dugan. “This year’s films weren’t intentionally all about old people, but somehow that turned out to be a definite theme”.
Saturday afternoon will be the kick-off to Zinema 2’s “Made in Minnesota” film series with a screening of Louis Malle’s 1985 documentary on Glenco, MN entitled “God’s Country”. Johnathon Olsen and Dugan have been working to get representatives from Glenco to speak at the screening about their experience with the film and how the town has changed since the French director was last there.
The weekend wraps up on Saturday evening with Minnesota filmmaker Stephen Gurewitz’ “Marvin, Seth & Stanley”. The festival coordinators promise that anyone showing up to this screening in a fisherman’s hat will recieve a free diet, caffine-free sierra mist.
Screenings begin Friday, the 27th, starting at 7:00 pm. Movies continue through the weekend on Saturday the 28th from 2 to 5pm and again at 7:00pm. It all takes place at the junctions of County Roads 1 and 4 just a few miles south of Wrenshall and approximately 25 minutes south of Duluth. The suggested $10 donation goes towards maintenance of the theater and organization of the festival. More information is available at the festival website www.freerangfilm.com