Updates

Get Access to All T/F Concerts; Pick Up the Busker Band

New this year, True/False is offering access to all 13 of our music showcases with our $30 Busker Band. You’ll also get one ticket to a film. It works great on it’s own or as a compliment to a Simple Pass. Online sales end this Tuesday at 6 pm. Alternatively, you can pick one up at the merch table at our 2014 box office, located at the corner of Hitt and Broadway.

To help spread the word about our concerts, our music team created these cool new posters for the shows at Mojo’s, Cafe Berlin, The Blue Fugue, Eastside Tavern and Sparky’s.

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poster by Amanda Rainey

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Poster by Jeremy Morton

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Poster by Delia Rainey

poster by Justin Nardy

poster by Justin Nardy

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Be sure to note the latest edition to our 2014 music lineup, the energetic street performers Les Trois Coups. They were a huge hit when they first traveled from Paris to Columbia for T/F 2012, and this year will be a part of our concerts Saturday night at Cafe Berlin and Sunday afternoon at Sparky’s.

Posted February 23, 2014

True Life Fund Events

Announcing two special events in associated with the True Life Fund and our 2014 TLF film, Private Violence.

Friday 2/28

3-5 PM: Community Conversation and Training

Location: Palmer Room, Reynolds Journalism Institute, University of Missouri

This event, open to all, will bring together cross-sections of the community to discuss domestic violence. Kit Gruelle, the advocate featured in the True Life Fund film Private Violence will lead participants through clips of the film and host a discussion. The idea behind this discussion is to break down silos to better address this very private violence in our community.

The first 50 attendees at this event will receive a complimentary ticket to a screening of True Life Fund screening of Private Violence.

Sunday 3/2

3 PM- 4 PM: Community Conversation for Action

Location: Palmer Room, Reynolds Journalism Institute, University of Missouri

Join us on Sunday after the second and final screening of the True Life Fund film, Private Violence, for a chance to extend the conversation. The discussion will be guided and hosted by Kit Gruelle, an advocate featured in the film, True North of Columbia, and The Missouri Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. We will begin where the film ends and focus on how to translate the momentum from Private Violence into community action.

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Posted February 22, 2014

Calling All Students! Get a Free Taste of the Fest with T.G.I.T/F!

Introducing Thank Goodness It’s True/False! This is our new program for all High School and College students statewide. We invite you to try a taste of the fest on us!

The day starts with a free film and refreshments at the Missouri Theater, followed by art, music, and film workshops and events, and is topped off by a raucous downtown parade. All free. All just for you.

The Friday of the festival (February 28) is a Columbia Public High School teacher work day and students have the day off, so we’ve created a Friday full of free fun for students! We are even providing free bus transportation for all local CPS high schoolers (just fill out this form, and take it to your high school by the 25th). We also welcome all other students from high schools and colleges in our fair state. Grab your student ID and come on down!

10am: Doors open at the Missouri Theater. Come early for coffee, snacks, and live music.

11am: Particle Fever screens, followed by a conversation with our special guests: Mark Levinson, the film’s director, and David Kaplan, star of the film. (Film synopsis: Some of the world’s most savvy scientists guide us through the largest experiment in history, the Large Hadron Collider, which seeks to unlock the secrets of the cosmos).

1 – 5pm: Then, all afternoon, we have free music, art and film events just for students: workshops with local and visiting artists (make costumes and puppets for the parade, get a special public art tour, and meet with internationally acclaimed artists), meet and hear local and national musicians, and talk with filmmakers from around the world.

5:30pm: The day will end with the always fabulous March March parade.

For more info and to reserve your spot, sign up here: http://truefalse.org/educate/attend

We also offer informational presentations about the fest, classroom visits with festival guests, free and discounted tickets, field trips, year-round film education programs, work with the True Life Fund, and other meaningful volunteer work.

FUNDING PROVIDED BY THE BERTHA FOUNDATION

Posted February 20, 2014

The Gateway Packet is Now On Sale

The Gateway Packet for True/False 2014 is now on sale. For $35, Gateway lets you reserve three tickets to the select T/F 2014 screenings listed below. These screenings all take place during the festival, which runs from Thursday February 27th to Sunday March 2. You can get tickets for different screenings or three for the same screening. It’s up to you.

The first Gateway option is a film we’re sure will be a crowd-pleaser. Playing Thursday night at 7 at the Missouri Theatre, Jodorowsky’s Dune explores the attempt by cult-film director Alejandro Jodorowsky to adapt the classic sci-fi novel Dune, a colossally ambitious project that would have altered the history of cinema. Despite its failure, this project stands as an inspiring example of uncompromising artistic ambition. Director Frank Pavich and editor Alex Ricciardi will be on hand afterwards to tell the story behind this behind the scenes story.

Second is Captivated: The Trials of Pamela Smart on Friday evening at 7pm at Jesse Auditorium. This films revisits a story that captivated America in the early 90s, how a 22-year-old woman in small-town New Hampshire may have engineered the murder of her husband at the hands of her teenage student. The public’s interest in this scandal created an extraordinary media circus that ushered in the era of reality TV.

Director Jeremiah Zagar will be at Jesse to answer questions after the film. In the video below he explains his approach to the material.

Your next option is E-Team Saturday morning at 9:30 at Jesse. This film documents the heroic work of Human Right Watch’s Emergency-Team, which investigates crimes against humanity in some of the world’s most dangerous hot spots. Rob Nelson at Variety noted “The valiant and vital work of four globetrotting human rights activists is expertly illuminated in E-Team, a dynamic and immersive piece of you-are-there verite.”

Co-director Ross Kauffman will be on-hand Saturday morning to talk about this amazing production.

eteam

Next up it’s Tim’s Vermeer  at 12:15 Saturday afternoon at Jesse. Created by the magicians Penn and Teller, the film is about inventor Tim Jenison, whose insatiable curiosity led him to test a mind-blowing hypothesis about Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer and his photo-realistic masterworks. Tim himself will be in attendance, who you can meet briefly in the film’s trailer below.

Saturday at 6 at the historic Missouri Theatre it’s Ukraine is Not a Brothel.  This film is a close study of Femen, the Ukranian feminist advocates known for topless protests and elaborate street theater. The story behind these controversial tactics is both complex and provocative. Director Kitty Green and Femen member Inna Shevchenko will be there for what is sure to be a lively Q and A. Check out the film’s very “Not Safe For Work” trailer below.

Saturday night at 9 Jesse you’ll have another chance to see Jodorowsky’s Dune.

At 9:30 Sunday morning back at the Missouri Theatre we have Big Men. This film gives an insider’s look at the political machinations in the oil-rich west coast of Africa. Over the course of seven years, director Rachel Boynton gained access to both boardroom executives and mask-wearing saboteurs, creating a work of sprawling ambition and scope. You’ll be able to ask her about it in person after the film.

bigmen

At 12:15 at the Missouri Theatre we’ll be giving our True Vision Award to director Amir Bar-Lev, before a screening of his new film Happy Valley, which explores the culture surrounding Penn State football and its reaction to the Jerry Sandusky sexual-abuse scandal. Matt Sandusky spoke about his father’s crimes for the first time as part of this film.

happyvalley

Or over at Jesse at 12:30, it’s our True Life Fund film Private Violence. This film powerfully takes on the hidden epidemic of domestic violence, debunking many harmful myths that surround this frequently taboo subject. We’re raising money for subjects Kit Gruelle and Deanna Walters, who along with director Cynthia Hill will be on hand to discuss this important topic.

The last film available in the Gateway Packet, playing at 3:15 Sunday at Jesse, is The Unknown Known, the new work from master documentarian Errol Morris, who’ll be Skyping with us after the screening. In it, Morris trains his formidable interview skills on former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. The resulting exchange is a fascinating examination of the power of language.

The Gateway Packet is available for a limited time only, so make sure to pick one up soon. Or better yet, tell a friend about it today!

Posted February 18, 2014

Access All T/F Concerts with the Busker Band!

True/False may be a film festival, but we’re about more than just cinema. We’ve backed no less than 12 concerts into the four days of the Fest, plus a bonus show on True/False eve. These showcases take place a variety of Columbia’s coolest venues and feature a variety of musical styles. And if you want access to them all, we’ve created a new way to experience the Fest,   the Busker Band. For $30 you admission to all of music showcases, plus more. It works great on it’s own or as a compliment to a Simple Pass.

Among the shows you can catch is our True/Folk showcase on Thursday, the first night of T/F, at 7 at The Blue Fugue, featuring Foundry Field Recordings, Samuel James and The Flood Brothers.

Friday at 9 you swing by Cafe Berlin for Mountain Animation, Lonesome Leash, Yes Ma’am and first-time T/F performer Yva Las Vegass.

Saturday Night at 9:30 it’s Mojo’s A-Go-Go, where you can dance the night away in a synth-pop trance provided by SpaceIsThePlace, Née and MNDR.

And Sunday afternoon at 2 you can pick up a scoop Sparky’s Homemade Ice Cream and watch the talented singer-songwriter Samuel James.

These are just a few of the concerts we have on offer. Be sure to check out the concerts page for the rest. And bear in mind that if you do decide on a  Busker Band, you’ll get all of the following:
  • Admission to all T/F busker showcases and concerts
  • Admission to Busker’s Last Stand at the Missouri Theatre on Sunday night
  • One, non-transferable wristband that grants you admission to the events listed above
  • One movie voucher that can be exchanged for a screening ticket at the box office (starting at noon on Thursday, Feb. 27) or for admission via the Q line at Jesse Auditorium, Missouri Theatre or The Blue Note
  • If a showcase or concert reaches capacity, admission will be on a space-available basis
  • Does not include admission to screenings, parties, special events, or pre-screening busker performances

 

Posted February 14, 2014

The 2014 True Vision Award Goes to Amir Bar-Lev

We’re thrilled to announce that Amir Bar-Lev will receive this year’s True Vision Award in honor of his dedication to and advancement in the field of nonfiction filmmaking. This award, the only one at True/False, is given with the support of Timothy D. McGarity, MD. Bar-Lev is the eleventh recipient of the True Vision Award, which will be designed and cast in bronze by mid-Missouri sculptor Larry Young.

Amir

Bar-Lev is an American filmmaker, writer and producer, who has crafted countless innovative and award-winning documentaries. In Fighter, his 2000 directorial debut, he follows two Czech Holocaust survivors, Jan Weiner and Arnost Lustig, as they travel across Europe retracing Jan’s escape from the Nazis. Bar-Lev’s approach vividly captures the men’s unforgettable personalities and relationship.

fighter

In 2007′s My Kid Could Paint That, Bar-Lev explores the pressing questions raised by the art world’s embrace of a four-year-old abstract painter and her work. Offering no easy answers, Bar-Lev doesn’t shy away from probing his own relationship with his subjects and the process of documentary storytelling itself.

mykidcouldpaintthat

2010′s The Tillman Story takes on the death of Pat Tillman, the American football player who left a multi-million dollar contract to serve in the Army Rangers. The Tillman family’s quest to unearth the truth surrounding his death illuminates the way in which the military and media construct narratives, and the power of those narratives in shaping how we see the world.

the tillman story

This year True/False will show Bar-Lev’s new film Happy Valley. It tracks the destruction of the bucolic image of Penn State University and its surrounding community following the Jerry Sandusky child-abuse scandal. Shot in the wake of this revelation, it takes an unflinching look at the collective guilt and identity loss experienced in a football-first culture.  Happy Valley highlights Bar-Lev’s rare gift of finding the emotional depth within a widely reported story.

happyvalley

Previous winners of the True Vision Award include Lucien Castaing-Taylor & Verena Paravel (2013), Victor Kossakovsky (2012), James Marsh (2011) and Laura Poitras (2010).

 

 

Posted January 30, 2014

Akiko Stehrenberger’s Artwork at Hittsville

Hittsville (the shared home of Ragtag Cinema, Uprise Bakery, 9th Street Video and Hitt Records) will be hosting the work of Los Angeles-based artist Akiko Stehrenberger beginning on February 23rd and running through T/F 2014. 10% of the sales are going to our True Life Fund.

Akiko created the gorgeous illustration for this year’s T/F poster. She began her career in New York doing spot illustrations for publications such as SPIN and New York Press. Upon moving back to Los Angeles in 2004, she became an art director/designer for movie posters while illustrating for various types of other freelance projects. She is a three time Key Art/CLIO Award winner and a two time SXSW Best Film Poster Award winner, in addition to a multitude of other awards and accolades.

Check out a few of her posters below and browse many more at akikomatic.com.

FUNNYGAMES-new

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Posted January 28, 2014

Private Violence is Our 2014 True Life Fund Film

The True/False Film Fest is proud to recognize Cynthia Hill’s Private Violence as this year’s recipient of the True Life Fund.

Private Violence focuses on Kit Gruelle, an advocate for survivors of domestic violence, and Deanna Walters, who is battling for justice after surviving horrific abuse at the hands of her former partner. The film exposes the complex obstacles that stand between a survivor of abuse and freedom, as well as dispels destructive myths about domestic violence. Private Violence shows that for survivors, the answer is rarely as simple as just walking away from their abuser.

The film is part of a larger media project focused on ending domestic violence against women through awareness and education.

The True Life Fund exists to support people who bravely and selflessly share their stories in documentary films. This year, the funds raised will be awarded to both Kit Gruelle and Deanna Walters, who represent ideal recipients. We’ll be working extensively director Cynthia Hill to raise money and conduct outreach.

Private Violence is the eighth True Life film since the fund began in 2007. The U.K.-based Bertha Foundation provides a matching grant for the grassroots fundraising effort. We’re also grateful for the continued partnership with The Crossing, who will be sponsoring the True Life Fund this year for the seventh time.

 

 

Posted January 23, 2014

Over 100 T/F Films Available to Watch Online

Announcing the new True/False video page. Give it a look and browse through over 100 films from past True/False Film Fests available to stream online for free. You can sort by the year they played the fest, or by whether they are a short or a feature. These films are gathered from a variety of sites which legally stream docs, including Vimeo, YouTube, Hulu, SnagFilms, Crackle, P.O.V. and The National Film Board of Canada’s online archive.

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We’ve also collected videos of classic docs, musical performances, interviews and much more. Come take a look around and see what catches your eye.

Posted January 6, 2014

2013 in Review

Another year has come and gone, and 2014 is already upon us. But as we prepare for everything that lies ahead, we wanted to take a look back at an extraordinary year for documentary film. 2013 was the year film critics woke up to nonfiction’s essential place in the cinema. This was reflected in the best-of lists, where a strong consensus emerged that documentaries were among the year’s best.

A good place to start is Scott Tobias’s Year in Documentary piece for The Dissolve, which praises 2013′s docs for their formal innovations. Tobias argues that 2013 was “a year in which documentary filmmakers liberated themselves from past formulas and found new ways to express the truth”; where docs were “committed to veering away from the realm of magazine pieces or Wikipedia, and finding truths only the camera can reveal”.

He opens his article by looking at Leviathan, which used tiny, light-weight GoPro cameras aboard a commercial fishing vessel to discover a new standard of cinematic immersion. Filmmakers Lucien Castaing-Taylor and Verena Paravel of Harvard’s Sensory Ethnography Lab received our True Vision Award at a screening of this work at last year’s fest. It was recently named the film of the year by the staff at L Magazine, who noted “This heaving, churning epic defies pat classification. In this case it’s only reasonable to invoke a critical cliche: you have to see it for yourself.”

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Tobias also cites These Birds Walk, which spies into the lives of the homeless and runaway boys of Pakistan with a sustained eloquence reminiscent of the cinema of Terrence Malick. This film is the first to play True/False twice, first as a work-in-progress in 2012 and then as a completed film in 2013. Peter Rainer of the Christian Science Monitor named it among his ten best, noting that Birds is “flooded with piercing sequences that open up an entire country and way of life”.

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Another T/F 2013 selection receiving attention is After Tiller. The documentary debut of Lana Wilson and Martha Shane profiles the only four doctors left in America who perform late-term abortions. Taking on this most divisive of issues with a delicate and intelligent approach, the film takes us inside the confidential counselling sessions where women face impossible decisions. Naming it her number three film of the year, Katie Walsh at The Playlist observed “the remarkable thing about a film like After Tiller is the way in which Wilson and Shane take such a political topic and turn it into something so personal”.

AfterTiller_WarrenHern

The Act of Killing was named film of the year by both the Guardian and Sight & Sound magazine. The later, run by the British Film Institute, publishes a top 30 list every year after surveying over 100 international critics, curators and academics. The Act of Killing enlists the perpetrators of Indonesia’s mass killings of the 1960s to reenact their crimes in garish cinematic set-pieces. This truly startling work has already generated a massive secondary literature, including Sight & Sound’s latest piece by Carrie McAlinden. 

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Sarah Polley’s Stories We Tell turns the revelation of an awkward family secret into an investigation of a deeper mystery, the role that narratives play in all of our lives. Stories came in 13th overall on the Metacritic meta-pollElizabeth Weitzman of the NY Daily News named it her film of the year, calling it “intimate in scale, but enormous in scope”.

Sarah Polley in a still from Stories We Tell

Critics have also rallied around a T/F 2013 film perhaps too strange to be regarded as a documentary (or then again, maybe not). Andrew Bujalski’s undefinable Computer Chess takes us back to the dawn of the information age, to a strange hotel convention where a group of computer programmers are attempting to develop an artificial intelligence. Ignatiy Vishnevetsky at the A. V. Club picked this bizarre sci-fi comedy as his film of the year.

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Other T/F 2013 films mentioned in critics best-of lists include No, Blackfish, The Gatekeepers, 20 Feet From Stardom and Cutie and the Boxer.

2013 also saw the launch of an excellent new online resource for documentary fanatics. Christopher Campbell’s new site Nonfics features news, reviews, pieces on classics, a podcast and the first annual Nonfics critics poll, which collects a plethora of nonfiction only best-of lists.

Finally, filmmaker Robert Greene shared his list of the year’s best cinematic nonfiction in his Unfiction column at Sight & Sound. Greene’s “highlights of a triumphant year for the art of documentary” include T/F 2013 pics Sleepless NightsThe Last StationWinter Go AwayDeclaration of War, A Story for the Modlins and the shortest film ever to play True/False, Tina Delivers a Goat.

Tina Delivers a Goat from Joe Callander on Vimeo.

These are clearly exciting times for documentary film. We can’t wait to see what lies ahead in 2014, and share it with you in just a couple months.

Posted January 3, 2014
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