Zach here. Barely. I just got home from ten days in South America’s wildest and most dangerous jungle – Buenos Aires – where Brad and I were presenting The International Sign for Choking for the first time ever at the world’s greatest film festival – BAFICI (read an account of my 2010 experience here).
A lot just happened, you guys. I think I’ll do general impressions first, followed by a series of pix/vidz, and finally, exciting news at the bottom.
So, I’ve been to BAFICI four times now. It’s always amazing. The programming is so huge and diverse, without sacrificing quality. All of the screenings are well attended. The general energy level is positive and very high. I’ve made some friends over the years, so it was a strenuous week as the demands of a proper festival experience and a proper social life (they don’t overlap much) tugged me in opposite directions. By day four (after three consecutive sunrises) I’d come down with a full blown head cold that’s still lingering, but in spite of the physical consequences I think that the phrase “full success” is in order.
Things went really great as far as screening the movie is concerned. Perhaps the biggest and most pleasant surprise was the amount of fellow N. Americans who went to see it and felt compelled to come talk to me afterwards. It’s such an exact demographic, and yet an ideal one. I guess I underestimated just how many of us there are down there, so it was unexpected and wonderful not only to have these people in the audience but to receive such a positive response from them. The Argentine public was receptive as well, and seemed to agree that the movie captures its city effectively (despite containing almost zero recognizable locations). I’m very pleased and excited, but also terrified now to be taking it on the road to see what the rest of the world thinks.
But BAFICI’s real treat is in the other movies you get to see should you choose to take full advantage of the festival. Unless I’m forgetting any, I saw fourteen. For me, the best one (which I saw at a 10:30am press screening with almost zero prior knowledge) was De jueves a domingo. I can’t remember the last time I was so excited about a movie. Store the title in your memory and watch out for upcoming screenings.
Anyway, let’s do pix/vidz now.
So I got there on Friday the 13th (unharmed, thank you) and even though I hadn’t slept in twenty-four hours I wanted to start the festival off right by going to see TABU. This movie is being called a masterpiece, and it pretty much is. I didn’t fall asleep at all during it! Following the screening we immediately commandeered our hosts’ apartment to throw ourselves a welcome home party:
The world premiere screening of the movie was on Sunday evening. It was sold out. Our buddy Coco grabbed this video of the line outside the theater:
After the movie, co-star/genius Roger Delahaye and his mad scientist buddy Hernán played a show as Telescuela Técnica. Roger is on the left playing the laptop and xylophone. Hernán is on the right playing the syringe and frying pan. I think this was during their Black Hole Sun cover:
Our last screening was on Wednesday afternoon. That night was the OLGA/DENVER show. They are both so good. It was amazing:
By our last weekend I was feeling well enough to dabble in the nocturnal world again. Brad and I had a late dinner at Roger’s place along with his genius girlfriend and general superhero Martín Crespo. Afterwards we went to see one of my favorite bands. That’s me in the front with my hand up:
We spent our last night at Julio’s place, a consistently bizarre speakeasy with Kabbalistic undertones. A fast-talking mystical police officer rolled us up a smokey treat and let us try on his uniform.
And that was BAFICI 2012, an unsurprisingly amazing time. Now, onward to two very exciting announcements regarding The International Sign for Choking that probably should have been made even sooner.
First of all, Brad and I will be heading to Lisbon in just a couple of days for our EUROPEAN PREMIERE at IndieLisboa. Bummer Summer played there last year and I couldn’t make it, so I’ll be going twice as hard this time around and I can’t wait.
Next, following immediately on the heels of our Lisbon screenings, will be our NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE at the Maryland Film Festival in Baltimore. I’m really so excited about this one and I don’t know how to make that clear enough. In addition to Brad and I, Nandan, Sophia, and Rob are going to be there too. It’s going to be the social/frito pie event of the season.
More updates soon!