Despite tornado siren warnings late this afternoon True/False marched on- literally! The March March parade through the streets of downtown Columbia went on even in the pouring rain...drum lines, costumes, tubas, even the fire ball twirlers weren't hindered by the weather at all!
But let's talk about the real reason we're here..THE FILMS! Today I was able to see two amazing documentaries- El Bulli: Cooking in Progress and Project Nim. Both deal with experimentation, one experiment in the current visionary kitchen of a Spanish restaurant and one experiment involving a monkey in the late 70s. When I told people I saw El Bulli they sort of dismissed it as another "cooking" thing, giving up an entire subject thanks to reality tv! Thanks Reality TV! The film, like the director (Gereon Wetzel) said in a Q&A following the screening, is a narrative that follows the characters of the food- how it evolves out of this kitchen in the 6 months of menu planning the chefs undergo and what the food becomes in the end. Beautiful, thoughtful, simple and surprisingly funny this movie is the perfect modern documentary!
Project Nim was one I missed at Rotterdam and was super excited to catch this time around! James Marsh, the director of the famous Man On Wire and the director of honor at this years True/False fest, crafted the story of an actual experiment that took a chimpanzee from his mother, attempted to raise it as a child (complete with a sign language vocabulary), and then sort of dissolved into a battle of interpersonal (human) relationships and (mostly) bad decisions. A crazy story and a well made film that made me wonder how the seventies happened? The film ended with the director, producer and one of the story's heroes, Bob the chimp caring student, answering a few questions and trying to restore the audiences faith in humanity.
Hopefully I'll get to see a few more films here tomorrow if our set up & sound check isn't too involved-Gravity Was Everywhere Back Then screens Saturday March 5th at 5pm at the Globe Theater in Columbia Missouri with a live soundtrack featuring a giant line up of Brent, Brendan, Drew, John, Alan, Mike and Me (Donna K. for any new comers! hi!)!