A program of recent silent and nonverbal films runs the gamut of genres and approaches. Info
In conjunction with the organizers of February's Wisconsin Iranian Film Fest, the WUD Film Committee is hosting the 3rd Globe International Silent Film Festival (GISFF) across two weekends in April, from Saturday, April 21 at 1 p.m., through Sunday, April 29 at 10:30 a.m. in the Marquee Theater. This eclectic and expansive festival collects 49 silent and nonverbal films from 23 countries. The selections run the gamut in terms of length (one-minute super-shorts to 25-minute mini-features) as well as content, from live-action narrative, stop-motion animation, heartfelt documentary, structuralist avant-garde, to pure performance art. Altogether, it's a unique opportunity to take in the work of modern directors revitalizing a style typically associated with the origins of cinema and limitations of technology in the pre-1930s era.
The inaugural afternoon presents two separate 80-minute programs. The 1 p.m. block contains 12 shorts, including a pair from the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia; it all begins with a narrative from Chris Shimojima entitled Do You Like Me Now? (2016), which wonderfully expresses turbulent affection through tense violin-driven chamber music from Lev Zhurbin and synchronized slow-motion interpretive dance by choreographer Adam Barruch. April 21's later program at 3 p.m. kicks off with something more meditative and mythological in nature by Isaac Kerlow. Inspired by silhouette animation (see: Lotte Reiniger) and Southeast Asian puppet theater, Shadows (2014) is a timeless tale of preservation and perseverance.
As with many notable film festivals worldwide, the third annual GISFF will consist of a seven-member jury who will vote on the winners in each of the aforementioned content categories. Among the panel are Hamidreza Nassiri, curator of the Wisconsin Iranian Film Festival and a UW-Madison Film Fellow; Ann Marie Fleming, director of Window Horses, which had its Madison premiere in spring 2017 as part of WUD Film's Directress Film Festival; and Mahmoud Kalari, renowned cinematographer of award-winning feature A Separation (2011) and collaborator of fellow Iranian innovators Kiarostami, Farhadi, and Makhmalbaf. For the complete jury listing, please visit GISFF's official site. The full four-day schedule of silent shorts may also be viewed with this handy PDF guide. —Grant Phipps