The 37th Starz Denver Film Festival began in Denver last night, and while I have not been able to extensively cover the festival in a few years – my reviews from the 2011 festival, the last one I covered in depth, are archived here – I am excited to announce I will be checking out a number of interesting films at the festival this year, and will be providing my thoughts on everything I see over the next two weekends.
Now, for various reasons – decreased personal stamina, increased academic and professional commitments, etc. – I will not be providing full, individual reviews for every film I see. Instead, my plan right now is to provide a diary of my experiences at the end of each day, detailing the films I saw and my reactions to them. These pieces shall hopefully go into a fair bit of depth on each of the films in question, but they will not be getting individual articles this time around. There is a practical reason for combining multiple films into single pieces, of course – it makes things substantially easier for me, and will get my reactions up on the site in a more timely manner – but I also hope it helps to give a greater sampling of the festival itself and connections between the individual films, rather than letting everything simply stand on its own.
In regards to the films themselves, I have a very specific plan of attack this year. First, I will only be seeing and covering films on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, as it will be too difficult to get down to Denver for the festival on weekdays – so expect pieces to go up the evenings of November 14, 15, and 16, and then resume on 21, 22, and 23, with wrap-up coverage and retrospective pieces likely publishing on the following days. Second, rather than devote my time (and money) to seeing some of the ‘big’ films featured at the festival – The Imitation Game, Foxcatcher, Wild, etc. – I am going after less prominent, mostly foreign films, ones I would not expect to see in local theatres any time soon. I would rather seek out and highlight those films than devote time to features that will be out in general release in a matter of weeks, and I will have plenty of other opportunities to see and write about very soon (DVD screeners have already started trickling out to critics, for instance, so I know it won’t be difficult to see big awards players by the end of the year).
So that is, for now, the plan. Certain features I already have lined up to see include The Tribe, The Look of Silence, Clouds of Sils Maria, Kumiko the Treasure Hunter, and more, all of which I am extremely eager to check out. And if you live in the Denver area, I would of course encourage you to participate in the festival, as it is one of our city’s great cultural opportunities, and is showcasing some truly compelling content throughout the next two weeks.
For now, I will be back here with my first report from the festival tomorrow evening, or, at the latest, in the early morning. Follow me on Twitter @JonathanLack for the quickest updates throughout the festival.