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Cinema Junkie by Beth Accomando

Citizen Fest

If youd like to see a film whose title doesnt end in the number 3 (although one begins with the number 3) then belly up to the bar at the Whistle Stop for the first ever Citizen Fest (July 19 from 8 pm to midnight and it's free!), a showcase of local films presented by Citizen Video.

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The first-ever Citizen Fest

Citizen Video, like Kensington Video, is a rental place dedicated to providing an eclectic selection of film titles on its shelves. Both shops are run by people with a passion for film, and both challenge renters to try something new. Citizen Videos Holly Jones is trying something new as well. She's launching the first ever Citizen Fest at the Whistle Stop Bar. She's been showing trailers at the bar but this is the first time she will showcase local works that have caught her eye.

The Fest highlights the award-winning Deacon's Mondays by Destin Daniel Cretton and Lowell Frank of Flagpop Productions . This is a film that I have firsthand knowledge of. I showed it earlier this year at Film School Confidential: A Showcase of San Diego and Tijuana Filmmakers where it received a tremendous response. Cretton and Frank having been making films in San Diego for a number of years. Their previous works include the shorts Longbranch and Bartholemew's Song , and the feature documentary Drakmar: A Vassal's Journey. Drakmar premiered on HBO Family on Father's Day, and Deacon's Mondays was a finalist at the National Student Academy Awards and won Best Narrative at the national Sceneit awards. Deacon's Mondays, as with Longbranch , reveals how interconnected we are. In that respect, it's a perfect selection for the community-minded Citizen Video to feature in their first Citizen Fest. But wait there's more...

Citizen Fest also showcases Wintercollar , which is also a Flagpop Production but this one's directed by Bradley Kester. Wintercollar involves a man who just happens to have a watermelon for a head. Nobody makes anything of it, it's just part of who he is. But like the man in Darron Aronofsky's Pi, he starts picking at his brains... or in this case melon. Cleverly shot and well worth checking out.

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3 Girls Named Bunny

But Jones isn't content with just showing works that have already received acclaim and had local screenings. She has sought out new works that will be having their San Diego premieres. So included in the evening will be the intriguingly titled 3 Girls Named Bunny by Iain Andrew Sclater, The Approximation by Craig Oliver, and Before I Even Knew You Existed by Glen Gibbs. Jones says she will round out the evening with additional shorts by local film students and Citizen Video members. Jones is also putting out a call to aspiring film and video makers--if anyone out there has a film they want to screen, bring it along for Jones to consider for the next installment of Citizen Fest.

For more information visit Citizen Video online or in person at 2207 Fern St. in South Park. And kudos to Holly Jones for highlighting what might be our next generation of independent filmmakers. JERRIANNE HARLAND
July 19, 2007 at 07:02 PM
Citizen Video is a bright light in not only the South Park area, but San Diego in general. Holly Jones has done a great job of bringing so much more to the film viewers of SD, especially those who might not know much more then what is shoved at them at the local multiplex. Film lovers can find so much more ar this gem of a shop. And the extra treat of film talk with Scott Marks on Fridays is not to be missed. -----