Screening at RBHS to kick off True/False festival

Image used under the Fair Use Doctrine

Image used under the Fair Use Doctrine

Emily Franke

[vc_custom_heading text=”True/False outreach brings the festival to RBHS ” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center” google_fonts=”font_family:Open%20Sans%3A300%2C300italic%2Cregular%2Citalic%2C600%2C600italic%2C700%2C700italic%2C800%2C800italic|font_style:600%20bold%20regular%3A600%3Anormal”][TS_VCSC_Image_IHover ihover_image=”271536″ ihover_style=”square” ihover_circle_effect=”effect1″ ihover_circle_direction=”left_to_right” ihover_circle_scale=”scale_up” ihover_circle_direction2=”top_to_bottom” ihover_circle_direction3=”from_left_and_right” ihover_circle_direction4=”left_to_right” ihover_square_effect=”effect4″ ihover_square_direction=”from_left_and_right” ihover_square_direction2=”left_and_right” ihover_square_direction3=”top_to_bottom” ihover_square_direction4=”left_to_right” ihover_square_direction5=”left_to_right” ihover_square_scale=”scale_up” ihover_colored=”false” ihover_square_border=”4″ ihover_square_color=”rgba(10,10,10,0.5)” ihover_square_shadow=”true” ihover_circle_border=”10″ ihover_circle_color1=”#ecab18″ ihover_circle_color2=”#1ad280″ overlay_handle_show=”false” overlay_handle_color=”#0094ff” ihover_content=”It opens with crickets. The only sounds on an otherwise peaceful evening in rural Indonesia, as the sky darkens through a micro-rainbow of blue and indigo. Thus, with calm to match the bombast of The Act of Killing, Joshua Oppenheimer begins his companion film, also about the 1965-66 genocide, but this time from the point of view of the victims. Adi Rukun, optometrist, lives with the weight of his brother’s murder, and two parents burdened with memories of the horror and tragedy of that time. With the help of Oppenheimer, Adi begins to track down the men responsible for his brother’s death, visiting them, talking with them and, in one of the more poetic images of the film, testing their vision. It is really our vision that Adi is testing – inviting us to follow him on a journey that most of us would be too fearful to even begin. In confronting these killers, Adi is not only dredging up ghosts, but putting his own life (and that of his family) in very present-tense danger. Adi’s quest represents an act of bravery almost unmatched in cinema, and the film, with quiet intensity, demands that we bear witness. What we do after that is up to us. True Life Fund Film. Presented by The Crossing” ihover_event=”none” ihover_show_title=”true” ihover_video_related=”false” ihover_video_auto=”true” tooltip_html=”false” tooltipster_offsetx=”0″ tooltipster_offsety=”0″ margin_top=”20″ margin_bottom=”20″ ihover_title=”The Look of Silence”]

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Early on in the festival’s history, the people working with True/False reached out to schools to get students involved in the festival, David Bones, activities director, said. For the past seven years Bones has been at RBHS, True/False has brought a part of the festival to the school, and this year on Thursday, March 5, the True/False Film Festival will hold a presentation during first block for students and teachers to attend.
“They’ve always come prior to the festival and worked with us to find a good time to bring a film,” Bones said. “We do that once a year formally as part of the festival.”
This year, True/False will show parts of Joshua Oppenheimer’s  The Look of Silence and have a Q&A session. According to True/False, Oppenheimer’s film follows the 1965-1966 Indonesian genocide from the perspective of the victims. Depending on an individual’s knowledge of the film’s content, Bones said, students could walk away from the presentation with different experiences.
“It could be just a general familiarity with the content, and some could be motivated to learn more,” Bones said. Others could be “motivated to kind of help change the certain situation or scenario. … [For] some, it might just be, ‘Hey, this is cool, didn’t have any idea what the festival was about. I’m gonna go check it out a little bit more.’”By bringing this film to RBHS, Bones said True/False is able to reach students who might not otherwise participate in the festival. However, this presentation is just one way True/False reaches out to students, he said, and for students interested in filmmaking or in the content of the films, there are also opportunities to volunteer with the festival or be a part of the T/F Boot Camp.
“It’s a really fun and free program for high school students that I attended two years ago,” senior Alex Isgriggs, founder of RBHS’s Secret Film Society, said. “I’ve always been interested in film related activities outside of school. When I heard about the free student boot camp two years ago, I signed right up and had a blast. This year I hope to learn even more about filmmaking and see some great movies”
This year, Isgriggs enrolled in the “Storytelling” track, one of several sub-groups in the boot camp that will focus on how documentary films are put together. The boot camp meets a couple months before the festival, according to True/False, and participants “document their experience through writing, audio/video, interviews, or photography.”
Senior Olive Lopez, who will be in the art group this year, said she chose to do the boot camp a second year because last year was such a wonderful experience.
“It really gave me a lot of inspiration for personal art projects and pushed me to try to get involved a lot more because I saw how great this community is,” Lopez said. “I am interested in the art group because art is kind of my whole life. All of my classes this year are art classes. I am hoping to major in photography or something in the art realm, so this group really just fits all my interests.”
Beyond the art aspect, Lopez said the sense of community surrounding downtown during the festival is like nothing she’s ever felt anywhere else. Lopez said whether someone’s seeing a documentary or in the boot camp, everyone is friendly. Similarly, Bones said a certain atmosphere surrounds the festival.
“My favorite part is kind of the vibe and the buzz that comes into town because a lot of folks come from all over. There’s an excitement and it’s just cool to be a part of that,” Bones said. “It’s a way to give back to the community. It’s a good way to pursue passion about filmmaking, about art, about certain content because there’s such a variety of different content covered in these films.”
By Emily Franke
Movie poster used under the Fair Use Doctrine