Shannon Whisnant has a nose for a bargain. But when he bought a used grill at a North Carolina auction, the severed human foot he found among its ashes was not part of the deal. Soon the gruesome discovery becomes the toast of the infotainment world, and the new owner spies a golden opportunity to cash in on the media frenzy, until struggling addict and amputee John Wood recognizes his missing member and demands his own foot back. It is the stuff of documentary legend.
Bizarre twists of fate with perfectly twisted characters take center stage in a courtroom battle with television’s Judge Mathis, exploding this classic small-town feud to epic proportions as their 15 minutes of fame turns their lives upside-down and they find themselves basking under the heat lamps of the international talk-show circuit.
This astonishing, stranger-than-fiction tale defies definition because it uniquely traverses the quirks of a small town in the midst of a media phenomenon, while it examines manifold human paradoxes such as greed, ego, familial dysfunction, and that most elusive of all human conditions, redemption.
MEET THE PATELS
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MEET THE PATELS is a laugh-out-loud real life romantic comedy about Ravi Patel, an almost-30-year-old Indian-American who enters a love triangle between the woman of his dreams … and his parents. Filmed by Ravi’s sister in what started as a family vacation video, this hilarious and heartbreaking film reveals how love is a family affair.
Fresh out of a breakup with his secret white girlfriend, who his parents knew nothing about, and freaked out that he’s almost 30 and single, Ravi goes on a family vacation to India with his head and heart spinning. Ravi is willing to do whatever it takes to find love—but there’s one tricky detail to consider: In his family, everyone has the last name Patel. Patels marry other Patels. It’s not incest, it means they are from the same 50-square mile radius in India. Struck with how overwhelmingly happy the marriages are of his Patel family and friends, Ravi enters a fool-proof Patel matchmaking system and embarks on a worldwide search for another American Patel just like him.
THE YEAR WE THOUGHT ABOUT LOVE
What happens when a diverse group of LGBTQ youth dares to be “out” on stage to reveal their lives and their loves?
“The Year We Thought About Love” goes behind the scenes of one of the oldest queer youth theaters in America, with our camera crew slipping into classrooms, kitchens, subways, and rehearsal rooms with this fearless and endearing troupe. Boston-based True Colors: OUT Youth Theater transforms daily struggles into performance for social change. With wit, candor, and attitude, our cast of characters captivates audiences surprised to hear such stories in school settings. Our film introduces a transgender teenager kicked out of her house, a devout Christian challenging his church’s homophobia, and a girl who prefers to wear boys’ clothing even as she models dresses on the runway. When bombs explode outside their building, the troupe becomes even more determined to share their stories of love to help heal their city.
THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING
What if confronting the climate crisis is the best chance we’ll ever get to build a better world?
Filmed over 211 shoot days in nine countries and five continents over four years, This Changes Everything is an epic attempt to re-imagine the vast challenge of climate change.
Directed by Avi Lewis, and inspired by Naomi Klein’s international non-fiction bestseller This Changes Everything, the film presents seven powerful portraits of communities on the front lines, from Montana’s Powder River Basin to the Alberta Tar Sands, from the coast of South India to Beijing and beyond.
Interwoven with these stories of struggle is Klein’s narration, connecting the carbon in the air with the economic system that put it there. Throughout the film, Klein builds to her most controversial and exciting idea: that we can seize the existential crisis of climate change to transform our failed economic system into something radically better.
Over the course of 90 minutes, viewers will meet…
Crystal, a young indigenous leader in Tar Sands country, as she fights for access to a restricted military base in search of answers about an environmental disaster in progress.
Mike and Alexis, a Montana goat ranching couple who see their dreams coated in oil from a broken pipeline. They respond by organizing against fossil fuel extraction in their beloved Powder River Basin, and forming a new alliance with the Northern Cheyenne tribe to bring solar power to the nearby reservation.
Melachrini, a housewife in Northern Greece where economic crisis is being used to justify mining and drilling projects that threaten the mountains, seas, and tourism economy. Against the backdrop of Greece in crisis, a powerful social movement rises.
Jyothi, a matriarch in Andhra Pradesh, India who sings sweetly and battles fiercely along with her fellow villagers, fighting a proposed coal-fired power plant that will destroy a life-giving wetland. In the course of this struggle, they help ignite a nationwide movement.
The extraordinary detail and richness of the cinematography in This Changes Everythingprovides an epic canvas for this exploration of the greatest challenge of our time. Unlike many works about the climate crisis, this is not a film that tries to scare the audience into action: it aims to empower. Provocative, compelling, and accessible to even the most climate-fatigued viewers, This Changes Everything will leave you refreshed and inspired, reflecting on the ties between us, the kind of lives we really want, and why the climate crisis is at the centre of it all.
Will this film change everything? Absolutely not. But you could, by answering its call to action.
BACK IN TIME
The documentary film BACK IN TIME is, at its heart, a look at the very real impact the Back to the Future movies have had on our culture. Funnily enough, the film’s genesis is a testament to how large that impact truly is. The project’s origins are humble: what started as an amusing addition to a Bar Mitzvah video, just happened to resonate and get stuck in director Jason Aron’s head. The Back to the Future trilogy had been a childhood inspiration which led to his career in film, and the idea of the De Lorean time machine wouldn’t leave his thoughts alone.
Those thoughts blossomed into idea for a film which would delve into the impact of the iconic machine. A plan was drawn up, and a Kickstarter campaign was launched. Over 600 backers helped the team supplement the feature’s budget, and for the past couple of years that money has gone to help Back in Time become something so much more than anyone involved ever imagined that it could be.
What was once a little idea that spawned a tightly-focused documentary has grown into something truly amazing over two years of filming. Instead of just a look at the eye-catching De Lorean, Back in Time is a cinematic monument to the vastness of the trilogy’s fandom. In addition to the footage and interviews revolving around the time machine itself, the crew found that simply by delving into the impact of the trilogy an epic journey began to unfold before them.
Shooting in London, England during a Back to the Future event, hundreds of attendees in 1950’s attire were captured for the documentary as they reveled in their shared love of the films; the crew got to set feet upon one of the prophesied hoverboards during a shoot at Hendo Hoverboards; and trips all across America took them from brightly-lit time machine-filled garages to the sun-kissed homes of some truly unforgettable faces.
The crew captured countless hours of footage during filming. From Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, to the Sheas and Hollers, and from James Tolkan and Lea Thompson to Christopher Lloyd and Michael J. Fox, Back in Time features interview after interview that simply must be seen.
The scope of the impact of the Back to the Future trilogy is truly something to behold. Back in Time will premier in the fall of 2015 thanks in great part due to the support of a legion of fans. Digital and physical copies of the documentary will be made available after the premier, with precedence going to all those who backed the film’s Kickstarter campaigns.
DRUNK STONED BRILLIANT DEAD:
THE STORY OF THE NATIONAL LAMPOON
From the 1970s through the 1990s, there was no hipper, no more outrageous comedy in print than The National Lampoon, the groundbreaking humor magazine that pushed the limits of taste and acceptability – and then pushed them even harder. Parodying everything from politics, religion, entertainment and the whole of American lifestyle, the Lampoon eventually went on to branch into successful radio shows, record albums, live stage revues and movies, including Animal House and National Lampoon’s Vacation. The publication launched the careers of legends like John Belushi, Bill Murray, Chevy Chase, Christopher Guest and Gilda Radner, who went on to gigs at Saturday Night Live and stardom.
Director Douglas Tirola’s documentary about the Lampoon, DRUNK STONED BRILLIANT DEAD: THE STORY OF THE NATIONAL LAMPOON, cleverly chronicles its founding by two former Harvard students, its growth, demise and everything in between. Told thru fresh, candid interviews with its key staff, and illustrated with hundreds of outrageous images from the mag itself (along with never-seen interview footage from the magazine’s prime), the film gives fans of the Lampoon a unique inside look at what made the magazine tick, who were its key players, and why it was so outrageously successful: a magazine that dared to think what no one was thinking, but wished they had.