Sydney King - "Pearl Diver", Matt Kresling - "The Milk Can"
Pictured here are Bethel Film Festival Screeners John Grissmen and Roberta Lautenschlager with Festival Director Carol Spiegel. Roberta ("Bobbie") is an independent film Producer from St. Lois and very involved with the St. Louis Film Festival (Nov. 10-20).
Pictured above is Professor Karen GS Raftery from Western Connecticut State University. Professor Raftery was on hand to introduce Director Sydney King (Pearl Diver) and lead the post screening Q&A.
Pictured above is Sydney King the Writer/Director of "Pearl Diver". I had to check out the film print so I popped in to the screening. Having seen the film a few times, I am still moved by his incredible ending. And with the 35mm film print it looked stunning. Sydney will be off to the St. Louis film festival for additional screenings of his film. Sydney is seen here with some of the festival guests after his screening.
Pictured above is Writer/Director Matt Kresling. Matt was at the Bethel Film Festival to screen his film "The Milk Can". The Milk Can is about a small town rivalry that escalates to full-scale war. After his screening, Matt handed out free to everyone in the audience, the behind the scenes making of documentary. Matt insisted that the documentary was better than the feature. I am still having a hard time trying to decide if he is right. The film was shot over several years, and as Matt points out, haircuts and girlfriends change. Also, his lead actor moved away. For me, I am settled that the documentary only makes seeing the feature better. My advice, you should watch both. If Matt ever sells his feature on DVD he should package them both together.
The Bethel Film Festival is a new festival. This was their first year. You can tell that the festival is just getting it's sea legs but that it is off to a very good start. They were able to secure the right sponsors, flew in the filmmakers, helped with hotels, got the town involved, and got great advice and help from other established festivals. This is a festival that over time will only grow bigger and hopefully more important as a regional New England festival because everyone involved genuinely loves independent film.