Woodstock Film Festival in Rosendale
Friday, October 3 2008
I mixed up another 160 pounds of dry concrete (which, after curing with water, yields approximate 200 pounds of hard concrete) and continued working on creating a level footing for the masonry wall of the greenhouse. Today I was working in a place that needed to be built up substantially higher than the place I'd been working yesterday, so I relied on more rock. I'm basically using the concrete as a kind of thick mortar between the rocks. And the rocks keep me from having to use forms to hold the wet concrete in place as it cures (although in some places I am using boards as makeshift forms). Still, the work is frustratingly slow and 200 pounds of wet concrete, even when it's just mortar between rocks, doesn't seem to go very far.
This evening Gretchen and I met Penny and David in Rosendale to see Prince of Broadway, an independent film being shown as part of the ongoing Woodstock Film Festival. When we arrived, there were a great many thin photogenic people dressed in black hanging out in and around the Rosendale Theatre, and only later was it revealed that much of the movie's cast (including nearly all the stars) had schlepped up from the city and were in the audience.
Prince of Broadway is the tale of Lucky, a hustler in the counterfeit goods trade. He finds shoppers on the street and brings them to a back room in a store front run by Levon, his Lebanese employer. Lucky lives in a ratty tenement but has a kind, considerate girlfriend and, well, a functional cellphone. All is going well enough until one of Lucky's old girlfriends confronts him on the street and leaves him with a baby she claims is his. Chaos ensues. It ended up being a highly engaging film, although I found the filming style to be a jarring; the camera loved to get all up in people's grills to the extent that only two thirds of their face fit across the entire screen. It's bad enough when pores are large enough to swallow softballs; it's unbearable when two ropes of snot, each as thick as a redwood, are dangling from a baby's nostrils.
Following the viewing came a question-and-answer session with the film's director and producer. Someone asked how much the film had cost and I was astounded to hear the answer: $40,000. We in the audience had each been given tickets allowing us to rate the movie, and I'd been planning on giving it a four out of five (mostly because of the unpleasant camerawork) but when I heard that, I gave it a five out of five. Anyone who can fashion a fulfilling feature-length film for $40,000 deserves a five.
The four of us went across the street to the Bywater Bistro (which used to be the übergentrified Rosendale Cement Company and which I now routinely refer to as "the Bilgewater"). We sat at a table near the door eating fries and other snacks and drinking more drinks than we'd normally have on a Friday night at our ages.
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