Splice : Premier event: Famous actors make Syracuse International Film Festival an arts affair
Critics, such as Roger Ebert, have suggested that one should try to see three or four films a day when attending a film festival. In Syracuse, fulfilling that unofficial requirement can be an indelible pleasure, venturing from Watson Auditorium on the Syracuse University campus to the cozy Red House Arts Center to the somberly majestic Palace Theatre, where most of the marquee events were held.
This festival kicked off on a light note Oct. 13 with a screening of ‘Pizza with Bullets’ at the Palace Theatre, which actor Vincent Pastore (‘The Sopranos’) attended. On Friday night, the Palace Theatre hosted a screening of Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘The Lodger’ (1927), for which American saxophonist Javon Jackson performed a new score. Saturday night saw the premiere of the riveting Syracuse-shot thriller ‘Session,’ starring Israeli model Bar Refaeli and Cuban-American actor Steven Bauer.
Of the many great works shown at the festival, the finest was arguably Robert M. Young’s ‘Human Error,’ a film that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2004. Boasting a refreshingly theatrical script and a slew of great performances, ‘Human Error’ deserves a great deal more recognition than it has received. The film’s stars, Xander Berkeley, Robert Knott and Tom Bower, joined Young to discuss the film afterward in an engrossing Q-and-A session, asking members of the audience for suggestions as to how they could reach a wider audience.
The excitement of screenings is amplified by the notion that the films the audience is watching may never screen for a large crowd again, because many films aren’t picked up by big-time distributors. Acclaimed filmmakers and performers gather to discuss their work and are generally very receptive to questions from members of the audience.
A film festival is arguably the most exciting cultural event in today’s art scene. Literary festivals have, unfortunately, lost a great deal of popularity, and music festivals function more or less as prolonged concerts. Film festivals are unique in their ability to attract large crowds that are eager to engage with and experience something new.
Thomas Wolfe is leaving his position as senior vice president and dean of student affairs to become the new president of Iliff School of Theology… Read more »
UPDATED: MAY 15, 4:35 p.m. Syracuse University students will soon see new living options in downtown Syracuse, after a new construction company revamps a vacant… Read more »
THEY'RE BACK: Syracuse pulls off furious comeback win against Yale to return to final four after longest absence since 1979
COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Brian Megill sprinted over to Dominic Lamolinara and catapulted into his arms. The game was over. The unthinkable was no longer… Read more »