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By Chris Gore | November 19, 2001

For a decade the St. Louis International Film Festival has been bringing foreign films and cutting-edge indie work to movie-going audiences in Missouri. SLIFF (that’s what people in the know call the fest, “SLIFF”) is most proud of their highly-touted New Filmmakers Forum. It’s best described as the “Wrestlemania of filmmaking competitions” taking five indies that have already won awards at other festivals and pitting them in competition against each other in a virtual “Thunderdome” of movies. The five selected films and filmmakers include writer/director Rosemary Rodriquez with her movie Acts of Worship, Mia Trachinger with “Bunny,” Randy Redroad with The Doe Boy, Craig Brewer with The Poor and Hungry and Abraham Lim with “Roads and Bridges.” While you might think that this competitive quintet would be clawing each other’s eyes out for the cash prize, quite the opposite happened. They all became fast friends having shared similar experiences in their respective whirlwind festival tours. And by the end, they even pulled together for a group hug.
I was invited to SLIFF to serve as a member of the jury that would decide the fate of the filmmakers stepping into Thunderdome. It was not an easy task.
The 10th Annual St. Louis International Film Festival screened breakthrough indie films, put on informative filmmaking panels and held nightly parties served over the course of an explosive 10-day celebration of cinema. I was proud to be a part of it and it was truly a film festival experience I will cherish. The pictures tell the whole story…

Get the full report in the next part of ST. LOUIS INT’L FILM FESTIVAL: THE LOOP>>>

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