Black Maria Film Festival – October 2019

October 30, 2019, 7:30PM
with Special Guest Anthony Jannelli

Since 1981, the Black Maria Film Festival, an international juried competition, has been celebrating and preserving the diversity, invention, and vitality of the short film. The Festival is named after Thomas Edison’s original West Orange film studio dubbed the “Black Maria” because of its resemblance to the black-box police paddy wagons of the same name.

The Festival focuses on short films which shine a light on issues and struggles within contemporary society such as the environment, public health, race and class, family, sustainability, and much more. The exceptional works range from animation, comedy, and drama to the exploration of pure form in film and video and are the heart and soul of the festival. It advances and exhibits the work of diverse filmmakers from across the US and around the world. These artists often represent an under-served constituency who might not otherwise have the opportunity for live public exhibition nationwide or abroad.

Special guest Anthony Jannelli, is a member of the International Cinematographers Guild and the Directors Guild of America. Tony has been an instructor at the Sundance Filmmakers Workshop and the Maine Photographic Workshops for Film and Television. Since 2002, he has taught cinematography at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts/Graduate Division and he served as head of the cinematography department from 2005-2008. Tony was also head of NYU’s graduate studies 2007-2008 and taught cinematography at NYU’s Tisch Asia (Singapore) in 2009. Tony’s love of teaching was inspired by his longtime mentor and friend, Nestor Almendros. Tony’s award-winning animated film, “The Velvet Underground Played at My High School” is featured in this program, and he will be present for a Q & A after the screening.

Join us for a selection of the 2019 award-winning films!

Tiger, Oak & Echo – Narrative
by Cy Kuckenbaker, San Diego, CA, 19 minutes

Young Echo longs to join his older brother in the guerilla war against the Soviet army occupying his homeland, Lithuania.  He persuades his brother, Tiger, to let him join in a risky ambush.  But when he makes a mistake before the battle, he has to choose – tell the truth and be left behind or stay quiet and join the fight.  Set in 1950, the story is based on real political events and is the first English language fiction film about the Lithuanian conflict.

A Feeling for Leaving – Documentary
by Dan Boord and Luis Valdovina, Boulder, CO, 9 minutes

We see a world from a rearview mirror, passing along 19th century settlement trails, monuments, gas stations, deserts, dinners, postwar suburbs and a movie motel drive-in.  Our histories are visible, mobile and vanishing.  Landscapes rush by – Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah. Destinations include a dinosaur along a highway, a ranch converted into a UFO observation park, an abandoned drive-in theater, a western parade in Wyoming and lonely stretches of road. Sunrise, from the Grand Canyon Suite by Ferde Grofé, accompanies a tourist’s panoramic journey meandering westward to the Westlake District of Daly City, California.

Unsettled – Experimental
by Tara Knight, Denver, CO, 7 minutes

Multiple layers of archival and historically-based images appear and disappear as they reveal glimpses into the ecological and economic histories of the American landscape.  A journey through American history includes the early lives of Indian peoples morphing into white settlements, industrial development, railroads, and dense landscapes.

Thanksgiving is Insane – Animation
by Josh Raskin, Toronto, Canada and Daniel Davis, Washington, DC, 5 minutes

As generally understood, the American holiday of Thanksgiving commemorates a neighborly feast that was shared by Pilgrims and Indians in 1621.  However, Thanksgiving reveals the origins of a country forever fascinated, conflicted, and shaped by its fraught relationship with American Indians.

The Last Guide – Documentary
by Cristian Gomes, Brampton, Ontario, Canada, 16 minutes

A portrait of Frank Kuiack, the last fishing guide in Algonquin Park.  He reflects on his troubled past and the story of his redemption that followed.

Voice – Narrative
by Takeshi Kushida, Tokyo, Japan, 10 minutes

A lonely man becomes fascinated with a shadow that appears on the wall of his apartment.

Bhairava – Experimental
by Marlene Millar and Philip Szporer, Montreal, Canada, 14 minutes

Produced and directed by veteran dance-filmmakers, Marlene Millar & Philip Szporer, (Mouvement Perpétuel, Montréal) with cinematography by Kes Tagney, this site-specific dance for camera was filmed on location in Anegundi and Hampi, India in February 2017.

The Velvet Underground Played at My High School – Animation
by Tony Jannelli, Summit, NJ, and Robert Pietri, LA, CA, 7 minutes

On Dec. 11, 1965, an unknown four-piece rock ‘n’ roll band took to the stage for the first time at Summit High School, in Summit, NJ. “Nothing could have prepared the kids and parents for what they were about to experience that night”; wrote Rob Norris, a student at Summit at the time, in Kicks magazine. “Our only clue was the small crowd of strange-looking people hanging around in front of the stage.”

Rabbit Tracks – Animation
by Luke Jaeger, Northampton, MA, 4 minutes

A journey through a mortality-infused landscape populated by mysterious chickens, inconvenient frogs, and other animated creatures.

What Aristotle Said – Documentary
by David Gross, Brooklyn, NY, 4 minutes

A portrait of the painter, art director, illustrator and teacher, Bill Curran of Hoboken, NJ.


Museum Members: $12
Non-Members: $15
Under 25 with valid ID: $10

Please call the Box Office for Tickets at 973.971.3706


Oct 30 2019


7:30 pm