DAY EIGHT - HRIFF 2022

Tecata (USA)

Director: Mario Gallegos

Tecata is slang for female heroin users.

Presented with an opportunity to escape her stagnant Southwest town, a young genizaro girl must decide if she will take the opportunity to leave or stay and continue struggling to care for her family as her mother sinks further into the grips of heroin addiction.

With this film, the director wanted to confront a word that has haunted him since childhood, a word so powerful it could immediately fill me with shame, embarrassment, anger and helplessness. In the setting of Tecata, there are cycles of poverty, violence and depression that lead to addiction; children are often parentalized- in charge of caring for younger siblings, cousins, neighbors and even their own parents and grandparents.

The focus of this film are the Genzaros, often referred to as coyotes, the product of kidnapped native servants and their Spanish owners.

Living in generational poverty is much like living in a cage, or being behind a fence, trapped, after being there for generations upon generations, there is comfort and safety in staying there, as the dangers of the outside world can seem daunting.

2022 BEST STUDENT FILM

WORLD PREMIERE

PG

Geisting (USA)

Director: Alex Bram

Paranormal is the new normal in "Geisting," a supernatural-horror-comedy about Poltergeisting from the Poltergeist's point of view. Journey to another realm where Poltergeists are learning how to live their best deaths.

While trying to avenge her death at the hands of her husband, a fledgling Poltergeist unintentionally leaves a multidimensional portal open, setting a demon loose on Los Angeles.

2022 BEST HORROR SHORT

HOLLYWOOD PREMIERE

PG-13

Black Oxygen: "Life Is Beautiful" (USA)

Director: Anthony L. Gilardi

"Life Is Beautiful" is a short film and music video by the band Black Oxygen.

Starring David Lyle, Nick Lyle, Danny Trejo, Sid Mallya, Tasha Reign, and STRETCH. It was written by Anthony L. Gilardi and produced by Tip-Top Productions.

The film follows two brothers who had a dream that was lost along with the passing of their father. He had always encouraged them that they could do anything that they put their mind to but it was different now. Feeling tired, out of place, and wanting more from life, this dream is reignited.

They go on a wild journey to realize that "Life Is Beautiful!" Featuring HRIFF 2021's Best Supporting Actor Award Winner - Danny Trejo.

WORLD PREMIERE

PG

Schithead & The Believer (USA)

Director: Kelly Rebecca Walsh

A writer, suffering post puppy depression, is convinced she’s an absolute failure both professionally and as a pet owner. Yet, miracles can come in furry packages, as her faith is renewed by an unlikely, toilet challenged muse. Written, directed and starring Kelly Rebecca Walsh, who with the guidance of father, Joseph Walsh (writer/producer of Robert Altman’s cult classic, “California Split”), and godfather Elliott Gould, had the creative support to see this little unsuspecting comedy through.

BEST ACTRESS 2021 - Kelly Rebecca Walsh

WORLD PREMIERE

PG-13

Let's Make a Movie (USA)

Dave Farese & Stephen Vanderpool

Dave and Steve are two action movie buffs who love movie star, Chad Worthington. When they decide to make their own film, they know it won't ever be up to par without Chad playing the lead. How do two idiots get a major action movie star in their bad film? They kidnap him of course. But when they accidentally kill Chad, they have to find a way to finish what they started.

"Let's Make A Movie" is a film for fans of "Pineapple Express" and "Eastbound and Down."

BEST COMEDY FILM 2021

NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE

R

Aaron/Jane Junior Thesis Project (USA)

Director: Aaron Osborne & Jane Hoffmann

The Junior Thesis Film.

During my junior year at Syracuse University, Jane Hoffman and I collaborated on a thesis. In retrospect, that decision was decidedly questionable.

We had been lovers, on and off, and were at that moment in time trapped in a sort of emotional purgatory. The question burdening both of us was "What does the future hold for our relationship?" As a means to answer that riddle, we consulted a tarot card deck.

Our film project attempted to capture that answer-seeking process, a process into which we both threw ourselves rather profligately.

I have unearthed the film and finished it. This is more than a student film to me. I have realized there is a reason it has taken me until now to complete it. The place it holds in my psyche is monumental. The aesthetics and storytelling approaches evidenced by the scratched work print and grease markers and outlandish performances represent to me such a specific time, one that is at once both lost and found.

That is what memory is.

BEST EXPERIMENTAL FILM 2021

HRIFF PREMIERE

PG-13

Louey & Bri TV (USA)

Director: Oliver Ponce

Louey & Bri TV is a 5-episode sketch comedy web series starring Luis Guzman and Bri Smith. Written and produced by Bri and Luis before the pandemic.

Each episode is stand-alone, and packed full of chaos, crazy characters, and unexpected outcomes. The 2021 HRIFF Award Winner for Best Web Series.

HRIFF PREMIERE

PG-13