This Ain’t California

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From Filmmaker Magazine

The most gratifying aspect of curating a film fest is being able to bring an under-the-radar gem you feel passionate about to an audience that might never otherwise see it. And as the director of programming for this year’s Santa Fe Independent Film Festival I was asked several times to name my favorite selection (which, of course, is like being asked to choose between kids). Nevertheless, I’d be lying if I pretended one film didn’t immediately leap to mind, a flick I’d fallen head over heels in love with when I caught it over the summer, courtesy of Rooftop Films. As I wrote in my program notes:

“The talk of the 2012 Berlinale and a hit at this year’s Rooftop Films Series NYC, West German director Marten Persiel’s This Ain’t California thrills on so many levels it ultimately defies description, much like its stunning skateboarding tricks caught on archival super 8 and set to 80s German synthpop. To call it a doc about a gang of skateboarders on the wrong side of the Berlin Wall doesn’t nearly do justice to this punk nostalgia trip and fragile time capsule, to this alternative history of the German Democratic Republic, and personal tribute to a lone teenage rebel with a universal cause.” – READ MORE

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