Get ready for another cinephile dream trip back to Twin Peaks land because the North Bend Film Festival is returning for its second edition from August 15 to August 18 in North Bend, Washington — the original shooting location for David Lynch’s beloved show.
But it’s not just a trip back to David Lynch-land. the NBFF is dedicated to “celebrating avant-garde, art house, and all things weird,” presenting an offbeat lineup of films, local experiences, immersive experiences and a whole bunch of cutting-edge VR experiences. Oh, and Collider’s horror podcast The Witching Hour is also set for the festival, where Perri Nemiroff and Haleigh Foutch will tape a live episode of the pod with Knives and Skin director Jennifer Reeder.
The rest of the festival lineup includes the opening film The Incredible Shrinking Wknd, documentary centerpiece The El Duce Tapes, narrative centerpiece Knives and Skin, and for the closing night feature, Netflix’s doc Circus of Books. Other titles include Feral, Bliss, Monument, Villains, and Extra Ordinary. Check out the full lineup, including the stacked VR presentations below.
The Incredible Shrinking Wknd
Opening Night Film
SPAIN | 2019 | 93 min | Dir. Jon Mikel Caballero
En route for a post-birthday cabin séjour with friends, Alba and her fiancé Pablo seem to have the perfect romance. But upon arriving at their weekend destination, Pablo confesses his intention to breakup with Alba–a bombshell revelation that changes everything. The next day, she wakes up to find herself back in the van driving to the cabin, living the same day again… A Twilight Zone-esque take on “What would you do to change your life?”, Caballero’s visual narrative spin on the genre is a wild ride into the emotional depths of love and loss.
Screening Sponsored by Snoqualmie Valley Real Estate
Knives and Skin
Narrative Centerpiece Film | Director Jennifer Reeder in attendance
USA | 2019 | 111 min | Dir. Jennifer Reeder
It doesn’t take much to turn a small town into a twilight zone. For the Midwestern community of Big River, all it takes is the disappearance of high school sophomore Carolyn Harper to trigger a widespread epidemic of emotional and psychological unraveling. But in the hands of writer-director Jennifer Reeder, communal crisis is wildly entertaining and wholly transfixing. An unclassifiable exercise in gloves-off visual style and disoriented ensemble storytelling, KNIVES AND SKIN is one of the year’s most attention-commanding feature debuts.
Screening Sponsored by Collider
The El Duce Tapes
Documentary Centerpiece Film
USA | 2019 | 105 min | Dir. Rodney Ascher & David Lawrence, Interviews directed by Ryan Sexton
Following ROOM 237 and THE NIGHTMARE, inventive documentarian Rodney Ascher returns with an uncomfortably in-your-face missive that’s simultaneously revolting and illuminating. Totally comprised of old VHS footage, Ascher and co-director/editor David Lawrence’s THE EL DUCE TAPES takes a long, hard look at Eldon “El Duce” Hoke, the misogynistic and all-around abhorrent front-man of the controversial ’90s shock metal band The Mentors. What begins as a “dare you to look away” character study evolves into a timely societal indictment, further cementing Ascher as a singular provocateur in the documentary field.
Screening Sponsored by Collider
Circus of Books
Closing Night Film | Director Rachel Mason in attendance.
USA | 2019 | 92 min | Dir. Rachel Mason
The year is 1976. She was a former investigative journalist and he was a special-effects guru. But when Karen and Barry Mason realized they needed more money to support their growing family, they did what any married couple would do—they opened an adult bookstore and started a gay porn empire. Directed by their daughter Rachel Mason, CIRCUS OF BOOKS is an honest, humorous and beautiful untold chapter in American queer history. `
West Coast Premiere
Director Joe Begos in attendance
USA | 2019 | 80 min | Dir. Joe Begos Dropped by her agent, visual artist Dezzy finds her coping mechanism for creative despair in a new uplifting drug on the market called Bliss. While her creativity seems to slowly enter back into her psyche, she soon begins to feel drug’s sinister side-effects. Presented as a lovechild between Gaspar Noé and Jim Jarmusch, BLISS is a visual acid-trip set against a bold score by Steve Moore.
Pacific Northwest Premiere Poland | 2019 | 108 min | Dir. Jagoda Szelc
Expecting a regular Summer internship, 20 students wake up on a bus and are stripped of their names and identities, leaving them only with a number and the new clothes on their backs. In this new home that seems to bend time and space, they begin to acquire new skills from a mysterious hotel manager. Following up on her award-winning debut feature TOWER: A BRIGHT DAY, Polish filmmaker Jagoda Szelc teamed up with a group of acting school students in creating MONUMENT. What they created is a ritualistic and unpredictable mood piece.
The Gasoline Thieves
Pacific Northwest Premiere Mexico, UK, USA, Spain | 2019 | 93 min | Dir. Edgar Nito
In need of quick cash, thanks to a desire to impress his high school crush with a new smartphone, 14-year-old Lalo embraces a risky black market hustle: the siphoning of gas for illegal resale. Which, before long, puts him in the increasingly narrowing sights of authorities and places his entire life in jeopardy. With the intimate and quietly explosive GASOLINE THIEVES, Mexican first-timer Edgar Nito pairs universally relatable coming-of-age anxieties with his home country’s underlying societal unease, crafting a thriller with immersive grit and raw emotion.
Pacific Northwest Premiere
Ireland, Belgium | 2019 | 94 min | Dir. Mike Ahern, Enda Loughman
Communicating with ghosts has always been second nature to small-town Irish medium Rose. When her father passes away, she decides to hang up her supernatural gloves and enter into a life as a civilian. Feeling like she’s successfully eased back into the normal world, she can’t help but renew her profession when a special case comes across her desk surrounding a pact with the devil and a washed-up rock star. Starring Maeve Higgins and Will Forte, this is a unique comedy you won’t soon forget.
Pacific Northwest Premiere Germany | 2019 | 84 min | Dir. Pia Hellenthal
Eva is a real-life sex worker–feminist by definition, vagabond and internet star. In this documentary feature by German director Pia Hellenthal, viewers are invited to peer into Eva’s daily life in Berlin, through her eyes and in her own voice. Pushing past the walls of censorship and societal constructs, SEARCHING EVA is a boundary-pushing and moving exploration into harnessing sexual autonomy and empowerment in a 21st century world.
West Coast Premiere
Director Andrew Wonder in attendance
USA | 2019 | 73 min | Dir. Andrew Wonder
Homeless and all alone, Yazmine (a terrific Annapurna Sriram) calls the dark labyrinths of New York City subway system home. No one she encounters, however, knows this, due to how Yazmine wanders in and out of strangers’ lives, taking brief sojourns outside of her subterranean dwellings to remind herself of what life is like above ground. Through a documentary-minded, vignette-heavy structure, first-time director Andrew Wonder’s unconventionally poignant FERAL gives both voice and humanity to a forgotten community of outsiders.
Pacific Northwest Premiere USA | 2019 | 89 min | Dir. Dan Berk, Robert Olsen
Two young lovers turned convenience store robbers are on the run and forced to improvise their plan when their getaway vehicle runs out of gas. Their search for a new ride leads the bumbling pair into a nearby home and straight into the hands of another couple harboring much more sinister intentions. Maika Monroe and Bill Skarsgård cook with alchemy in this off-kilter thriller that breathes new joyous life into the home invasion genre.
Sweden, Denmark | 2019 | 86 min | Dir. Johannes Nyholm
After suffering a devastating loss, a couple ventures out on holiday looking to return to some semblance of a life. What should’ve been a time of healing spirals into a full-blown relentless nightmare as a gang of carny freaks terrorize them in a sick game of adapt or die. Marked by a wicked sense of humor, KOKO-DI KOKO-DA is a tonally fluid criss-cross between compassion and an exploration of grief by all the ways we choose to run and avoid it.
I Know Catherine The Log Lady
Trailer World Premiere USA | 2020 | 2 min | Dir. Richard Green
We call her the Log Lady, but do you know the true story behind the beloved woman who portrayed an international cult TV icon up until the last week of her life? Join us for a special sneak peek of an exclusive trailer made especially for the festival of I KNOW CATHERINE, THE LOG LADY featuring never before heard audio from David Lynch.
NBFF unveils expansive VR Program and introduces new Work-In-Progress platform
“Over the past few years the growth in immersive technology has been incredible, but we haven’t seen the quality in narrative content catch up until now. I’m very excited to have been able to push the NBFF VR program to present an innovative and experimental line-up from all around the world, including the launch of a platform for work-in-progress projects.” said Emma Creed, the festival’s VR Programmer.
TRACES TO NOWHERE
VR Program #1
VR has the unique ability to blur and the line between illusion and reality, creating false memories, associations and emotions. This eclectic collection of experiences questions what we know about our place in society and the world around us, through interactive and transformative experiences.
Canada | 2018 | 10 Min | Creator: Kalina Bertin
West Coast Premiere
Germany | 2018 | 10 Min | Creator: Carl Krause & Dominik Stockhausen
Die Fernweh Oper (The Fernweh Opera)
The Netherlands | 2019 | 7 Min | Creator: Daniel Ernst
West Coast Premiere
Canada | 2019 | 6 Min | Creator: Chris Lavis and Maciek Szczerbowski
West Coast Premiere
Isle of the Dead
France | 2018 | 8 Min | Creator: Benjamin Nuel
Canada | 2019 | 6 Min | Creator: Paisley Smith
USA | 2019 | 15-20 Min | Creator: Eric Damell
USA | 2018 | 3 Min | Creator: Nicholas Van Buren
Italy | 2019 | 7 min 35 sec | Creator: Hannah Swayze, Daniel Contaldo
Japan | 2018 | 15 min 28 sec | Creator: Hajime Ohata
THE PAST DICTATES THE FUTURE
VR Program #2
VR is going to revolutionize documentary storytelling. Moving away from traditional, linear narratives; this collection of 360-degree, immersive short films turn real-life experiences into intimate moments that can be ‘lived’.
Cuba | 2019 | 14 Min | Creator: Marcos Louit/Patricia Diaz
4 Feet: Blind Date
Argentina | 2018 | 18 Min | Creator: María Belén Poncio/ Rosario Perazolo Masjoan / Damián Turkieh / Ezequiel Lenardón
West Coast Premiere
Accused No.2: Walter Sisulu
France | 2018 | 14 Min | Creator: Nicolas Champeaux, Gilles Porte
Turkey | 2018 | 13 Min | Creator: Deniz Tortum
12 Seconds of Gunfire: The True Story of a School Shooting
USA | 2019 | 7 Min | Creator: Suzette Moyer, Seth Blanchard
Traveling While Black
USA | 2019 | 20 Min | Creator: Roger Ross Williams
The Evolution of Testicles
UK/USA | 2018 | 9 Min | Creator: Ryan Hartsell
West Coast Premiere
REINFORCEMENT Creator: Brennan King
VR Program #3
USA | 2019 | 30 Min | Creator: Brennan King
Interaction in VR is only effective if it helps the story to progress naturally. You should commit to making decisions, without realising that you’re being asked to. You should tricked into a false sense of security, so comfortable that by the time you’re aware you’ve made a decision, it’s too late.
Two reality-pushing immersive events to unravel across North Bend Follower Immersive Theatre
Creators: Vinny DePonto, Elizabeth Carena
From the minds of theatre-maker and renowned mentalist Vinny DePonto (Charlatan, Mind Reader) and performing artist Elizabeth Carena (Then She Fell, Ghost Light) comes this world premiere immersive theatre experience for only five audience members at a time. Set in a secret location in the Pacific Northwest, you are met by two vagabond healers. Notorious for their controversial techniques, they lead you on a journey inside their practice. FOLLOWER explores the human fixation with control, our veneration of false idols, and our never-ending search for something more.
Ghosted Augmented Reality
Creators: Allyson Morgan, Kevin Laibson
Produced by: Allyson Morgan, Kevin Laibson Agile Lens: Immersive Design Lead AR Developer: Alex Coulombe Have you ever felt completely alone in the dating world? Sometimes it feels like one big purgatory waiting for the “one” to arrive. Now try dating…a ghost. In GHOSTED, a world premiere interactive Augmented Reality experience utilizing the Magic Leap One headset, you’ll go on ten minutes of speed dating with partners who can’t see or hear you – or at least, they’ll pretend not to. They want to talk to you about their hobbies, work, blah blah blah ghost stuff, but more importantly, they have one minute to convince you to take them BACK. Writers include: Nicco Aeed, Nick Carrill, Josh Conkel, Lucy Cottrell, JW Crump, Lucas Hazlett, Jake Keefe, Caroline McGraw, Allyson Morgan, Greg Moss, Tamsi New, Sarah Nowak, Alex Song, Amy Staats, Marina Tempelsman, Mark Vigeant, Robin Virginie and Emily Chaddick Weiss
Sponsored by Volition Brewery Don’t miss our special events with festival favorites and new live shows! The Witching Hour Podcast Featuring Jennifer Reeder
Co-hosted by Perri Nemiroff and Haleigh Foutch, Collider’s horror podcast The Witching Hour digs into all things horror, from the biggest titles at the box office to under-the-radar gems, exclusive interviews, early reviews, deep-dive analysis, and all the need-to-know in genre film from two horror die-hards. On this live episode, Haleigh and Perri will be joined by Jennifer Reeder, the director of our Centerpiece Film KNIVES AND SKIN.
Twin Peaks Tour Season 1+2 Saturday Season 3 and Fire Walk With Me Sunday
Sit back and relax for an iconic journey to some of the original shooting locations of hit series TWIN PEAKS. Lead by local historian, David Israel, participants will walk away with a thorough history of both the town and its iconic locales that once sparked the imaginations of David Lynch and Mark Frost.
Strange Storytelling Hour Hosted by Emmett Montgomery
THEME: Hynagogia: Stories that make you question if you’re dreaming, awake or somewhere in between. Hypnagogia is described as the experience of the transitional state between wakefulness and sleep in humans. Join fellow festival attendees for an hour of stories that explore dreamlike experiences that push the boundaries of reality and make you feel like all is not what it seems. Participants will be made up of festival attendees, local community members and hosted by storyteller, comedian and weirdo Emmett Montgomery (NBC’s Last Comic Standing, Seattle Weekly’s Best Comedian 2015, 2017, 2018 and host of the experimental basement/storytelling show “The Magic Hat” that has been described by the Seattle Times as “more of a cult than a comedy show.”)
Weird and wonderful shorts programs THE OBLITERATION OF CHICKENS, dir. Izzy Lee
Jon Mikel Caballero’s The Incredible Shrinking Wknd will be preceded by a short documentary on Bob and Laura Antone, multidisciplinary artists living in North Bend:
BEYOND THE BLACK LODGE, dir: Matt Ralston
A portrait of two artists whose shared love of folklore led them to write a book about the bizarre and quirky history of the region that inspired David Lynch’s Twin Peaks.
Few things in cinema are more exciting than being under the spell of a filmmaker whose figurative gloves are off and who’s unafraid to fully leap off the edge of sanity. Now, take that sensation and multiply it by eight. The result: the unique feeling conveyed by experiencing this unpredictable and wonderfully demented block of unruly shorts. Don’t just expect the unexpected—revel in it.
TECHNOLOGY LAKE: MEDITATIONS ON DEATH AND SEX, dir. Brandon Daley
A cautionary tale in which a man and his dog indulge in VR experiences to disastrous results.
LICENSE AND REGISTRATION, dir. Jackson Ezinga
Police work is difficult, especially if you’re not actually a cop but, rather, a fun-loving impersonator.
THE OBLITERATION OF CHICKENS, dir. Izzy Lee
Imagine if Werner Herzog delivered the most cynical stance on humanity possible—and then add some poultry.
DIDDIE WA DIDDIE, dir. Joshua Erkman
When all else fails in a romantic partnership, why not seek relationship advice from an intergalactic creature? What could possibly go wrong?
SAFE SPACE, dir. Annabelle Attanasio
An all-male secret society reveals its bizarre initiation ritual.
KING WAH (I THINK I LOVE YOU), dir. Horatio Baltz
It’s an anything-but-typical night on the town for one Chinese food delivery man.
SWITCH, dir. Marion Renard
Losing your virginity can be awkward, but for this teenage girl, it’s truly reality-altering.
THE THIRD HAND, dir. Yoni Weisberg
Pulling an all-nighter at work, a quiet employee foolishly explores a new room in his office.
Breaking through genre constraints with a collectively formidable precision, this provocative group of shorts explores the darker sides of identity, reality and mortality. Sometimes unnerving and other times disorienting, these complex stories come from eight boundary-pushing filmmakers and have a cumulatively haunting effect, one that won’t be easy to shake once the journey is complete.
GRAND BOUQUET, dir. Nao Yoshigai
Presented with a series of questions by a mysterious black object, a woman answers them the only way she knows how.
SELFIES, dir. Claudius Gentinetta
A rapid-fire barrage of digital self-portraits forms a bleak look at mankind’s most self-absorbed impulses.
CHAOS, dir. Samuel Auer
A motley crew of individuals, including a hobo and pig-masked men, are part of a larger plan in this technically head-spinning one-shot gem.
THE FOLLOWER, dir. Stephanie Szerlip
A small-town teenage girl, fueled by the hope of leaving her boring surroundings, entertains the increasingly sinister advances of an Internet friend in this beguiling riff on Joyce Carol Oates’ “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?”
DAUGHTER OF BABEL, dir. Ashlea Wessel
It’s the end of the world and only a lonely little girl on a rooftop knows it.
SOMETIMES, I THINK ABOUT DYING, dir. Stefanie Abel Horowitz
Detached and consumed by the possibility of ending her life, an antisocial woman makes an unexpected love connection.
NYMPHS, dir. Isabella Torre
After accidentally freeing three inhuman women, an archaeologist’s world turns upside down.
THE BOOGEYWOMAN, dir. Erica Scoggins
An enigmatic and potentially malevolent local legend comes full circle for a teen girl trying to grapple with her first period.
For its second edition the North Bend Film Festival commissioned its poster to Jerry Pyle, a Los Angeles based filmmaker/Designer whose work explores human suffering and the limits of consciousness. He has an MFA from Antioch University and lives with his family in Los Angeles. His latest project, Loveseat, is currently crowdfunding on Seed & Spark.
Here’s what he has to say on the making:
“A lot of my process comes from the accidents, both happy and sad that come from the fallibility of analog technology. I embrace those flaws. This project was right up my alley. I had to go to five different Goodwills to track down three non-working VCRs. I tinkered a little with their insides and hooked them up to my tv through a Vilcome Mini Upscaler. I put in an old vhs tape I had of a 16mm transfer I did of some 1960s “heart health” educational films. The images I got were both beautiful and completely unusable. Just a lot of lines and static. I took away one of the VCRs, played with the cables a bit and jabbed some pencils into some holes until every ten or fifteen seconds, a discernible image would pop up briefly. I captured those moments with our Sony A7S and brought them into photoshop to play around with. At the end of that process, I had about 10 images I thought captured the spirit of North Bend. This one made the final cut because it invoked a sense of primal dread in me. The fear of something being erased.”