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Crested Butte Film Fest Goes Digital, Sept. 25 – Oct. 4: This is a WIN!





Nothing can ever take away the magic of a first-person, in-person, live experience. At least that’s true when it comes to things like live music, dance, and sports. With movies, it’s arguably, critically different. Let’s consider: the reason why things like Netflix and Hulu and other streaming services have gotten so popular is because we’re all in love with an opportunity to watch great films from the comfort of our living room. 


This is where life gets lived in the best of ways. I count myself a cinephile, regularly scouring the web for obscure films and driving to festivals. I worked at Blockbuster in my youth and never wasted a single one of my five free rentals a week. Trust me when I tell you how amazing Crested Butte is because I’ve been there several times for recreation and romance. Believe me when I tell you how amazing the festival is, because I went up last year and cried watching Peanut Butter Falcon, swooned over Tony Morrison: The Pieces I Am teaching power and Blackness and raw truth, and I was swept up in love and magic watching Portrait of a Lady On Fire. The festival was miraculous. Festivals are an amazing experience. But so few of us have the means and the time to travel and invest a few days watching movies non-stop. 


But I can tell you this. 


With the virtual pass, you have the ability to watch movies *in advance* from the comfort of your own home, to beam an International Film Festival of the highest note right onto your big screen, with popcorn to pop in the kitchen, and local beers on chill mode in the fridge, and share the experience with your family. There’s no reason why anyone should miss out on this year’s Crested Butte Film Festival.


The Crested Butte Film Festival – rated one of the coolest festivals in the WORLD by Movie Maker magazine – has decided to go online for this go’round. While the in-person movie watching will be missed, the price can’t be beat: $75 for a virtual pass, an amazing price/value! Ticket holders will have 10 full days to stream 100 films and enjoy some inspiring panel discussions and presentations. Click here to see the promotional trailer.


Important reasons, beyond the comforts of home, to get that CBFF pass, include:


  1. 1. A spotlight on Colorado filmmakers. CBFF is thrilled to screen six films from Colorado (including CB) locals! These filmmakers capture the spirit and creativity that we love about this magical state. Here is more information on the amazing films & filmmakers with local ties.


  1. This year’s festival initiatives around racism and equality. CBFF is showing 6 films that touch on Race in America and is hosting a panel on diversity, inclusion, and equity titled “The Unusual Route: Dialogues Around Systemic Representations” (Wednesday, September 30th at 7:00 PM MST) that will be streamed live and open to everyone, free of charge. ACTIVIZED follows the stories of seven ordinary Americans who — for the first time in their lives — leave their comfort zones and become involved in the critical issues of our times: gun violence, voting rights, and immigrants’ rights. In BURDEN, Ku Klux Klansman Mike Burden opens the Redneck Shop and KKK Museum in historic Laurens, SC. He subsequently falls in love with a single mom, and under her influence, quits the Klan and is taken in by an African American reverend.


  1. With suicide rates increasing in Colorado’s teen community, and with September being National Suicide Prevention Month), CBFF is proud to showcase a screening of LIV, a film that unravels the stigma and silence around suicide. CBFF is also hosting a live panel discussion (Monday, September 28th at 7:00 p.m. MST) featuring “LIV” director & grammy award winner Alan Hicks, producer Paula DuPré Presmen, Liv’s sister Tess Kunik, Susan Caso (a licensed professional therapist), and Megan Dougherty, Executive Director of CB State of Mind. Both the film and panel discussion are free and open to everyone. 


According to the press release, CBFF’s line-up includes a diverse array of narrative, documentary, outdoor adventure, children’s, and short films. Ten highly touted “must see” feature films at this year’s festival include:



The struggle between those who created the dream and those who want to purchase it. 

Shot on 16mm black and white film and made to look like something from the 1950s, BAIT tells the modern story of a Cornwall fishing village under siege from gentrification. Martin Ward is a fisherman without a boat; his brother Steven has repurposed their father’s fishing vessel into a trashy, sightseeing boat, driving a wedge between them. Tourists crowd the bars, complain about the noise from trawlers, line their refrigerators with prosciutto and Prosecco and drive locals from their homes. Sound familiar? Welcome to life in a tourist town.





Ku Klux Klansman Mike Burden opens the Redneck Shop and KKK Museum in historic Laurens, SC. He subsequently falls in love with a single mom, and, under her influence, quits the Klan and is taken in by an African American reverend.




An undeniable spark during a chance meeting leads Christine, Nassim, and Marcello to explore the nature of their relationship together as each struggles to prove their worth to their families, themselves, and the world around them. It’s a love story – unconventional but firmly rooted in the contemporary times we live in – that takes these three adventurous characters from Los Angeles to Italy on a journey of self-discovery.





The documentary film, OUT LOUD chronicles the ups and downs of the first season of the Trans Chorus of Los Angeles — the largest group of transgender and gender non-conforming people anywhere in the world who come together regularly to sing. As the choristers gear up for their 2016 public concert debut, they share their inspiring life stories and reveal what it means to be trans in America. This extraordinary chorus makes more than music. It’s making history.




Determined to turn unfathomable tragedy into action, the teenage survivors of Parkland, Florida catalyze a powerful, unprecedented youth movement that spreads with lightning speed across the country, as a generation of mobilized youth take back democracy in this powerful coming-of-age story.




In the short film, “The Mystery of Now,” artist and Apache Skateboards founder, Douglas Miles shares socio-political context around the history that lead to life on the San Carlos Apache reservation, and the personal history of how and why he started a skateboard brand and team of local youth leaders. His advice on cultivating resilience, creativity, and joy, provides guidance in a time that for many feels uncertain, polarizing and divisive in our living rooms and around our dinner tables.




When the passenger ferry MV Sewol sank off the coast of South Korea in 2014, over three hundred people lost their lives, most of them schoolchildren. Years later, the victims’ families and survivors are still demanding justice from national authorities.





In Mexico, trouble exists before migrants even reach the border.


A mother, Magdalena, hasn’t heard from her son in months—not since he left their town to cross the border into the United States. Authorities want her to sign her son’s death certificate, but an encounter with a bereaved parent makes Magdalena realize that she cannot live without knowing his fate. She begins an odyssey through a changed country: through areas of Mexico torn apart by violence and desolation, chasing any available lead despite warnings not to seek answers. The power of a mother’s love leads to a shocking revelation.





This land is your land. This land is my land… No. Wait. Hold on…


In a time of growing inequality in America, there is one asset that remains in the hands of the American people: the 640 million acres of America’s Public Lands. Given its status as the last large-scale public asset on the planet, powerful forces have aligned to attempt the largest land grab in modern history, to rob Americans of this unique birthright, and make modern day vassals of the American people. Featuring award-winning outdoor and western journalist, Hal Herring. 




Entrenched in nostalgia, HIGH COUNTRY tells a timeless American story of how a community of conscientious and forward-thinking young people, disguised as ski bums and hippies, happened upon a ramshackle mining town on the fringe of society and worked to conserve and protect it for years to come.



Important notes:


This year’s festival also includes a number of films and live panel discussions on important topics such as suicide and racism, with a focus on how people can come together to solve these issues. Says Jennifer Brody, CBFF Festival Director: “People around the country are raising their voices to protest the injustice and institutional racism that has plagued our country. The loss of Black lives is tragic. We all must try harder to understand and overcome racism and social injustice in our world. We’re committed to being part of the solution, to listen, to learn, and evaluate the ways we can be better allies.” 


CBFF is hosting a panel on diversity, inclusion, and equity titled “The Unusual Route: Dialogues Around Systemic Representations” that will be streamed live and open to everyone, free of charge. A screening of the film “LIV”, a film that unravels the stigma and silence around suicide, will also be screened free of charge, followed by a dynamic panel discussion lead by “LIV” director Alan Hicks, producer Paula DuPré Presmen, Liv’s sister Tess Kunik, Susan Caso (a licensed professional therapist) and includes Megan Dougherty, Executive Director of CB State of Mind. 


CBFF’s all-access Virtual Festival Pass offers admittance to over 100 films and virtual events for just $75. Passholders will have 10 full days to stream up to 100 films, enjoy special panel discussions, and view inspiring presentations from the comfort of their own homes, living rooms, or backyards. Individual tickets can also be purchased for films or short programs for $10. The complete festival guide, including film descriptions and ticket options, can be found at the CBFF Virtual Festival Hub


For more information, please visit Crested Butte Film Festival http://cbfilmfest.org/.


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