2010 films
All ratings are parental suggestions of the screening committee and do not represent official MPAA ratings.
Stella's War

Directed by Vladimir Sulov
(90m, Bulgaria)
Feature (PG)
When terrorists acquire a new deadly virus that threatens mankind, a beautiful young CIA agent - Stella - is all that stands in their way. What follows is a true war - secret meetings, chases, shootings and death on the streets of Varna, Bulgaria, the ruins of Athens, the rocky shores of the Azure Coast, in the German country, the Sahara Desert, and under the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

The Lift (Best Animation Award)


Directed by Robert Kohr
(5m, USA)
Animation (G)
Everyone has been guilty of small misdeeds at one point or another. The Lift explores the consequences of one all too common act of not holding the elevator door open for someone eager to get on or worse, pushing the close button. An elevator interaction goes wrong, prompting a young woman to learn about being insensitive and to hold open the elevator door the next time around.

Quick, Fast, and in a Hurry

Directed by Dennis Kwong
(17m, USA)
Short Feature (PG)
A comedy short film about traffic school. Kevin attends traffic school which has an overzealous and overbearing instructor, who wants to reform all the students into model drivers.


Directed by Bjorn Anderson
(78m, USA)
Feature (PG)
Shot hand-held in the first-person POV style, "Eyes in the Dark" is an independent film that follows a group of college kids to a weekend cabin in Washington State. The filmmaking team contrasts the kids’ compulsive self-documentation and laid-back humor with the raw terror they find after crossing paths with an ancient evil. The filmmakers blended the improvisational talents of the actors with the beautiful but brooding locations to create a vision that plays on the fear of the unknown. Set in a fictionalized area of the Cascade Range with a long history of legends and mysterious disappearances, the film quickly transports the audience to a place of excitement and terror.


Somewhere only we know

Directed by Mateo Herrero
(12m, USA)
Short Feature (PG)
Rachel Smith, a young lawyer, decides to end a relationship with Tom Scott, a young prosecutor, because she is worried about her career and thinks this relationship is an obstacle. After that, they reunite in court from opposite sides. In this trial they fight not only to win this case but to get over their personal differences.

No Good Reason


Directed by Michael Mierendorf
(12m, USA)
Short Feature (G)
Musicians and singers from around the country, people who have never met and who are currently or recently homeless, gather in Boston to record a song written by a 15-year girl who was homeless when she wrote it. Natalie Merchant (formerly of 10,000 Maniacs) has less than three days to arrange and record the song - in a process that normally takes weeks or months. Working with several artists who have never set foot in a recording studio, Ms. Merchant completes the track, which winds up on a new CD featuring artists such as Bruce Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi, Jewel, Bonnie Raitt and many others partnering with unknown artists who are currently or recently homeless. The goal: to increase awareness of homelessness in America.

The Nothing Man
(Best Short award)

nothing art
Directed by Joey Cassaro
(20m, USA)
Short Feature (PG)
After finding out his job is going to be outsourced for cheaper labor, John Cleary decided to rally his men and fight. The Great Depression provides the setting for this tale of one mans guest to save his family and the lengths he would go for the America he was promised. With stunning performances from Lawrence Grotts as John Cleary and John Crann as Archie Sullivan, this piece shows the courage of human will and the lengths it will go for survival.

Machikado no Phantom
(Phantom of the Town)

Directed by hiroshi toda phan
(70m, Japan)
Feature (PG)
Genpei Taira is a street performer, earning money as 'a statue of blackness' in a town's central square. Though his earning is not sufficient, he is dedicated to helping people in trouble. And nobody knows he has a peculiar hobby : he dumps 'trash' on the
street as a guardian of the town. Today as always, he is cleaning up the street, with his own sense of
right and wrong...

Vitruvius' Toybox

tool pix

By Dennis Iannuzzi
(6 minutes, G)
My submission is a 6-minute piece of experimental computer animation (non-narrative) that is structured around an original piece of electronic computer music that I composed on a desktop computer. In previous festivals my film has been shown in animation, shorts, music, children’s and experimental categories.

Vietnam if Kennedy had lived

(People's Choice Award)

Directed By Koji Matsutani
80 minutes
Documentary (G)
“Combining footage from numerous Kennedy press conferences, in-depth interviews and a close reading of the documentary record, the film argues that critical decisions about the use of restraint and coercive diplomacy often require greater acts of courage than the use of force, and that character matters greatly in Presidential leadership”

A Call to Arms

Directed by John McCarthy
(19m, USA)
Short Feature (PG)
Anxious to win another presidential term, President Julia Sulaco (Antoinette Armande) hopes that the answers to the nation’s energy crisis have fallen from the sky in an unknown craft. Desperate to find answers, Sulaco assigns Giles to investigate the wreckage of the downed spacecraft, Giles, on the brink of solving the nation’s energy problems, has no idea he is about to embark on a journey of lies, cover-ups, and deceit that extend out of this world. Politics meet the Twilight Zone in A Call to Arms.

The Persephone Clause

Directed by Amy Lanasa
(11m, USA)
Short Feature (PG)
Immediately following their wedding, Franklin lets Alice in on a secret about their new life together that threatens to rock the foundation of all she believes. As the couple comes to grips with their new, bizarre reality, a chance encounter with a delivery man puts everything in perspective and allows Alice to have the upper hand.

Opelo za Bobija Fisera
(Requiem for Bobby Fischer)

Directed by Igor Stevanovic
(64m, Serbia)
Documentary (G)
‘Requiem for Bobby Fischer ' is a documentary movie about one of the most controversial players in chess history: Bobby Fischer. His portrait is painted through the eyes of his Serbian friends. The movie reveals various aspects of his personality: from a public exponent of anti-Americanism and anti semitism, to his private fears, obsessions and genius. Rejected by his homeland, the United States, Bobby Fischer felt welcome in Yugoslavia where he found one of his closest friends: chess grandmaster Svetozar Gligoric. Besides the chess grandmasters, some 'ordinary' people who had a chance to meet Fischer make an appearance in the movie: a journalist, a doctor, a barber, and a pickpocket. The film incorporates rarely-seen archival footage, from Fischer' s early matches to his retirement from chess and bizarre death in Iceland.

Two Hours in the Dark
(Judge's Choice award)

Directed by Chip Hackler
(35m, USA)
Short Feature(G)
Blindsided by the success of his comedy, 'It Happened One Night,' which swept the 1935 Oscars, director Frank Capra became crippled with fear. Convinced his next film would fail, he soon was having high fevers, losing weight, and baffling doctors. He deteriorated to the brink of death--until the day a mysterious stranger showed up and chastised him. Capra had been blessed with talents, the man said, including the ability to speak to millions of people for “two hours in the dark.”
Shaken by the man’s visit, Capra recovered to make such classics as 'Mr. Smith Goes to Washington,' 'Mr. Deeds Goes to Town,' and the beloved, all-time favorite, 'It’s A Wonderful Life.' Though his mysterious visitor was never identified, Capra told the story of the man’s life-changing visit throughout his life.

Fluorescent Gray


Directed by Leo Age
(8m, USA)
Short Feature (R)
Something bad is happening in the house of marriage. They promised not to know.

Woman's Prison

Directed by Katie Madonna Lee
(108m, USA)
PG Feature

When her mother is murdered by her father, Julie Ann Mabry is confronted by a life of hardship and poverty. Taken in by her Evangelical relatives, she begins to adopt new convictions in an effort to reconnect with her mother. Slowly, the threads of her new life begin to unravel and Julie is sent to prison. It is there she finds the freedom and community she had sought so long, yet it does not come without a price.

Old Kids!


Directed by Justin Meredith
(10m, USA)
(G) Animation-Experimental
This inseparable duo is always up to something FUN. Join Son and Bobby-Ann on a bilingual adventure through SPACE, learn how to make a DELICIOUS SNACK, and just have a dang GOOD TIME OK?!?! ok! ok! ok!



Directed by David Baas
(5m, Canada)
Animation-Comedy (G)
An animated mock documentary about the ecological plight of penguins in the Antarctic, possibly foretelling cataclysmic results for the rest of the world.

Been A While

Directed by Julio Ponce Palmieri
(8m, Canada)
Short Feature (PG)
After a man attempts to help a prostitute who was being accosted by a client, he quickly recognizes her as the old high school sweetheart he had cared so much for decades ago. This sends the story into a journey of memories, guilt, unique moments and possible reconciliation.

Les Murs du son

Directed by Martin Fournier
(52m, Canada)
Documentary (PG)
The Walls of Music shows the ups and downs of young Montreal musicians striving to make a name for themselves. It will change the way you view punk rock and the people who create it.

(Mama’s Boy)

Directed by Jesse Baldwin
(23m, Czech Republic)
Short Feature (PG)
Fourteen year-old Petr's dogged obsession with a waitress at the neighborhood bar threatens to destroy his relationship with the other woman in his life: his mother.

Canine Instinct

Directed by Nicholas Goodman
(60m, USA)
Documentary (G)
He’s not afraid to jump into the middle of a dog fight to caninebring order from chaos. He runs in the woods through brambles, streams, and over rock-faces training his dogs in Search & Rescue techniques, because as Kyle Warren himself will tell you: “If I can teach my dogs something that can save lives, I can’t think of a better way to spend my time.” Join Kyle as he takes you through his customized training sessions and discover why some people call him the Dog Man of Ulster County, NY in this home-spun portrait of an American original.

Lucky Break


Directed by Mark Bauer
(20m, USA)
Short Feature (PG)
Travis begins seeing unique messages inside fortune cookies. The fortunes help Travis at first, but all is not what it seems. The fortunes soon turn menacing. Now, Travis must do as the fortunes ask, or risk the consequences.

Collecting Chloe

Directed by Brad Thompson
(15m, USA)
Short Feature (PG)
Set in the 1970's, a young woman is just on her way
home from a long trip. Unfortunately, she stumbles upon a familiar and creepy town. Just when she thinks she's gotten away, she is pulled
back into the darkness.

Carpe Millennium


Directed by Eric Bednarowicz
(18m, USA)
Short Feature – (R)
'Carpe Millennium' is a comedy about a guy who wants to lose his virginity on the eve of the year 2000. In order to do this, he starts telling lies about knowing a famous celebrity. As the lies get bigger and bolder, more and more women are interested in him. Just as he's about to get lucky, the celebrity shows up and things take a turn for the worst! 'Carpe Millennium' is a story about telling the truth to oneself, and overcoming one's fear of the unknown...

Divine Matters

Directed by Jan Eckermann
(6m, USA)
Short Feature (G)
The hour before someone changes the world. For the worse.


retreat pix
Directed by Robert Joseph Butler
(11m, USA)
Short Feature (G)
Dateless to her a senior prom, a young woman gravitates to the Upper Peninsula in Michigan to the monumental Picture Rocks National Park where she gets in touch with her mind and spirit.

Still Bill

Directed by Damani Baker
and Alex Vlack
(USA, 77m)
Documentary (PG)
still bill“You know the music. Now meet the man”.
STILL BILL is an intimate portrait of soul legend Bill Withers, best known for his classics “Ain’t No Sunshine,” “Lean On Me,” “Lovely Day,” “Grandma’s Hands,” and “Just the Two of Us.” With his soulful delivery and warm, heartfelt sincerity, Withers has written the songs that have stood the test of time.

Faith Healer

Directed. by Adam Hirsch
Short Feature (G)
(23m, USA)
FAITH HEALER is the story of an alleged healer, Jefferson Bull Fermor, who sat for two interviews of a faithdocumentary before unexpectedly fleeing. Shortly after, the filmmakers found an old box was found, the contents of which allowed them a glimpse into his mysterious life. The film unravels the documentary form while searching for truth in a manipulative and illusory medium. Fact becomes blended together with fiction, and façades begin to crack. The result is an engrossing mystery, a reflection on form, and, most compellingly, a love story.

The Journal of Mr. Willaby

(26m, USA) Directed by Joshua Sallach
Short Feature (PG)
Aidan mugAidan Wilcox, a willful pre-teen foster boy, is looking for a way to earn some extra cash during his spring break. Meeting Mr. Willaby, an African-American war hero, at first doesn't seem like it'll pay the big bucks; but after learning of Mr. Willaby's journal, a book that contains future events already documented, Aidan decides it might be worth stealing a peak - an act that could have dire consequences.
The Journal of Mr. Willaby is a dramatic short film, set in the present day. The story depicts the helter-skelter life in a New Mexico foster home and, through the relationship between a boy and a decorated veteran, the unexpected impact of knowing too much, or too little, about one's own future.

(Best Feature award)

promises pix
Directed by Joel Rodriguez
(93m, U S A)
Feature (PG)
Rolando Dominguez who became a self made millionaire finds himself living homeless under a South Florida fishing pier. His dirty appearance is scary and grotesque. His spontaneous erratic actions may cause some to think he's crazy, but in reality he is re-living bits from his past as he realizes that the very thing he worked so hard for in order to acheive happiness for him and his family is the very thing that has destroyed his life. Rolando's Post Traumatic Stress Disorder does not allow him to realize that there is a nationwide search for him and his missing son.

Animal Drill

Directed by Patrick Murphy
(23m. USA)
Short Feature (PG)
To please his homophobic father, Buck Jackson tries out for the father’s alma-mater basketball team. But basketball tryouts and the ‘Animal Drill’ are a nightmare, as Buck is forced into physical battle with the team’s alpha male, Tyson. Each day is worse, leaving Buck heavily bruised and beaten. But his defiant father never lets him quit. On the last day, Buck finally holds his ground and makes the team. But back home, just making the team is no longer enough for his father. After a violent altercation, Buck affirms his homosexuality to his father, and then leaves him forever.

The Hand of Fatima
(Best Documentary award)

Directed by Augusta Palmer
( 75m, USA)
Documentary (PG)
Filmmaker Augusta Palmer follows the trail of her father, the late NY Times rock critic Robert Palmer, hand artfrom Mississippi to Morocco. Palmer's only specific bequest to his daughter is a mysterious necklace, a talisman which symbolizes his transformative encounter with an ancient Sufi band, the Master Musicians of Jajouka. With the help of her father’s friends and her three stepmothers, Augusta journeys to the remote village of Jajouka, experiences its sacred musical rituals, and comes to terms with her father’s legacy.

Business of Story

Em photo
Directed by Rebecca Ormond
(86m, USA)
Feature (G)
Antisocial Professor Emerson has overcome great adversity, namely her mother. Now it’s publish or perish time and only one eccentric publisher is interested in Em’s book of childhood stories on the condition that Em include her mother’s account of the events alongside Em’s own. Em grudgingly agrees to include her mother’s versions, although they are disturbingly absurd; but then so are Em’s. The victim and villain are simply switched in each woman’s surreal retelling of Em’s childhood. The film weaves these stories with Em’s comically dysfunctional life as Em searches for the “meaningful coincidences” the publisher insist are “the business of story.”

A Genesis Found


Directed by Lee Fanning
118m, Alabama USA
Feature, PG
In 1938, while working an excavation at Moundville Archaeological Park, Civilian Conservation Corp cadet John Patton Jr. found the key to our darkest secret - an anomalous skeleton neither animal nor man. Uncertain of its implications, Patton concealed the secret for decades - until revealing it to the world in a sensational tell-all novel that made him notorious across the globe. Claiming the skeleton was proof of not only the existence of extraterrestrials, but also of their involvement in the genesis of the human race, the novel would ultimately destroy his accomplished anthropology career-and leave him shunned at home. Nearly thirty years later, his grandson Gardner, an anthropology student at the University of Alabama, is forced to come to terms with his grandfather's past, a man he never knew but in whose footsteps he inevitably follows. When his cousin, controversial documentary filmmaker Bart Thompson, arrives at Moundville for a seemingly routine shoot, Gardner is eager to help. He soon learns, however, that Bart isn't back just to shoot a movie - he wants to find the skeleton their grandfather buried nearly seventy years before, and prove once and for all what he claimed was true.

The Three-Body Solution

Directed by Alison Marek
12m, USA
Short, PG
Like any body in motion, Prof. Delia Howell seems destined to stay in motion: She’s in line for her University’s top scientific medal, and her future as a rising star in theoretical physics is nearly guaranteed. But the upward trajectory of her career is jeopardized when a handsome young adjunct claims to have solved the“three-body problem” and is added to the shortlist for the Newton Medal. Will Delia be able to disprove her rival’s theory, or will a third “body” lead her in an entirely unexpected direction?

Crow's Feet

Directed by Megan Palinkas
Short Australia
8 min PG
Tom leads the kind mundane existence typical of a seventy year old man. A retired roof tiler, married to Barbara for 50 years, he plods through the days embittered by a lifetime of hard work and little reward.
When Tom disposes of a bothersome crow one day in the backyard, he could never dream to predict the consequence that follows.



Directed by Roman Jirnih
Short, Russian Federation
6 min, G
A window into a life of an old Russian woman who sent her family and friends of to war and to this day prays and awaits for their return.

Creative Differences

Directed by Loren E. Chadima
*Feature (80 min)
G USA (*not judged)
An aspiring filmmaker strikes it lucky when he meets a millionaire who will invest money in his next film. There’s a string attached, though. The producer’s good - for - nothing deadbeat son Junior has to be in it.

Fairview St.

Directed by Michael McCallum
Feature, USA
110 min, PG
Paroled after serving four years in prison for armed robbery, James Winton is coming home, uncertain of his future. When a murder occurs, he becomes the prime suspect, pursued by two detectives, determined to make him pay

When I Find the Ocean

Directed by Tonya S. Holly
104 min PG (*not judged)
ocean12 year old Lily Strickland has lost her father, a sailor, to the sea. She and her mother go to live with her grandparents. Lily and her family have little closure on the death of her father since he was never found, thus Lily sets out alone on a trek to the ocean to find the closure that she needs to heal her loss. Set in 1965 Alabama, during the Civil Rights marches.

The Last Legend

Directed by Brant Hadfield
Short Feature – 12 min
ll artHistory is never really dead, nor is the voice of one of Jessica's ancestors. She follows the riddle of a rhyme taught by her grandmother on a journey to a place she'd never seen, and nearly thought didn't even exist. A score to settle, left echoing though the generations since the Old West, collide with present-day as a young woman seeks to restore a storied place to her family's name, and learn the truth of The Last Legend.

The Utopian Fairhope
(Alabama Showcase Award)


The film is shown through the eyes of a newcomer to Fairhope, Al., Gary Scovil, who became inspired by the unique community, Entering the town I couldnt help being struck by its beauty. The inspiration leads him to collaborate with life long Fairhope resident Andrea Holloway to make a documentary film encompassing many of the things that make Fairhope a wonderful place.

© Copyright Alabama International Film Festival 2010. All rights reserved.