Saturday, February 23, 2008

Do you believe in the American Dream?

Not Your Typical Bigfoot Movie provides a look at the trials and triumphs of life in the Appalachian foot hills. Through the experience of Dallas and Wayne, two amateur Bigfoot researchers in southern Ohio, we see how the power of a dream can bring two men together in friendship and provide hope and meaning that transcend the harsh realities in a dying steel town. -- from the official website

On the surface the film is a documentary about two Bigfoot researchers, Dallas and Wayne, and their struggles to get their material reviewed. In reality the film is about the indestructible Appalachian spirit.

I know folks may be a bit leery of this sort of documentary and the possible exploitation that we have witnessed with the Jesco White films, but I can assure you that the producers are on our side. The cinematographer is my cousin Shane Davis. Shane and the director, Jay Delaney are natives of Lucasville and the executive producer, Jeff Montavon is from Otway on the other end of Ohio SR 348. You would be hard pressed to find a more Appalachian area of Ohio and I would dare say there is no more Appalachian area period. I am sure the subjects are in good hands. As Jay told me, “My mom raised me right.” I hope that this will compare favorably to David Sutherland's Country Boys.

The film is to premiere at the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin in March. This festival is a big deal with such past premieres as V for Vendetta and this year's premiere of Harold and Kumar 2: Escape from Guantanamo Bay. The film has been given nice placement at midnight showing on the first Friday, Monday and last Saturday of the festival. As you know Austin don't start hopping till the sun goes down.

Certainly there will be the folks who laugh at Dallas and Wayne, but my faith in human beings tells me that more viewers will come away believing in these two men even if they don't believe them. Delaney says, “that the way we look at other often says more about us than it does about those others.” There may be folks on one side of the socio-political divide who raise questions about personal responsibility and such, but those of us who live by Micah 6:8 know that we may all be created equal but we are all not born into the same favorable circumstance. And even the favorable circumstance of 1950s Scioto County Ohio can turn to rust in a lifetime. Luckily for some who find themselves in less than perfect situations the ability to dream in order to find a purpose in life is not easily crushed.


FolkFace said...

any showings around here?

Michael Tod Ralstin said...

Where and when we get to view this movie will depend a lot on if and what type of distribution deal these guys get out of its premiere at SXSW or that is what I imagine. I asked the director how soon I will be able to buy a copy and he said that we would have to wait until after the premiere to find out the particulars.

If we could ever get an Appalachian Conference for regular folks together this would be the type of thing I would like to see at one of the sessions. By session I mean we could get together and whitewash the side of a barn and project it from an LCD.