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Margaret Mead Film & Video Festival’s Kathy Brew Presents: “Ryan,” “Nalini by Day, Nancy by Night,” “Phantom Limb”
February 1, 2006 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm EST
Margaret Mead Film and Video Festival co-director Kathy Brew visits The Sanctuary For Independent Media to present a selection of shorts.
Ryan is a 2004 Oscar®-winning animated short by Chris Landreth, produced by the National Film Board of Canada. It is a biography of Ryan Larkin, former animator for the NFB. Larkin was in his heyday one of the many genius animators who worked for the NFB; his 1968 animated short Walking was nominated for an Oscar, losing to Disney cartoon It’s Tough to Be a Bird. However, addictions to alcohol and cocaine cost him his job with the NFB and eventually left him homeless, begging for spare change on the streets of Montreal. The short consists of Landreth interviewing Larkin at a Montreal homeless shelter. The short is notable for its deeply odd style of 3-D animation. The people appearing in the short, namely Larkin, Landreth, and some of Larkin’s old acquaintances, are represented by highly stylized, mangled versions of themselves, with pieces missing from each of them as means of representing emotional and artistic trauma.
Nalini by Day, Nancy by Night (2005) is an insightful documentary by filmmaker Sonali Gulati which explores complex issues of globalization, capitalism and identity through a witty and personal account of her journey into India’s call centers. Gulati, herself an Indian immigrant living in the US, explores the fascinating ramifications of outsourcing telephone service jobs to India—including how native telemarketers take on Western names and accents to take calls from the US, UK and Australia. A fresh juxtaposition of animation, archival footage, live action shots and narrative work highlight the filmmaker’s presence and reveal the performative aspects of her subjects. With fascinating observations on how call centers affect the Indian culture and economy, Nalini by Day, Nancy by Night raises important questions about the complicated consequences of globalization.
Phantom Limb (2005) director Jay Rosenblatt states: “The death of my seven-year-old brother when I was nine remains a painful and haunting memory. My parents did not know how to cope with the loss of their child and the entire family experienced indescribable pain. Phantom Limb uses this personal story as a point of departure. Whether it is a loss through death or divorce, the stages of grieving are the same. Individuals often go through denial, anger, bargaining, depression and, ultimately, some kind of acceptance, in order to heal. The film is loosely structured according to these stages. Interspersed throughout this poetic documentary are interviews with a cemetery owner, a phantom limb patient and an author of a book about evidence for life after death. Phantom Limb reminds viewers that while grief is painful and isolating, it is a reminder to each of us that life is impermanent.”
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