This weekend is your chance to embrace everything downtown Bend has to offer through the lens of BendFilm. There's no other event like it for getting out of the drudgery of everyday life. No need to drive to Portland to dress up in your spiffy clothes, this is your excuse to indulge in some cocktails, fancy dinners and feel like you’re in another world within miles of your own home. Pick up a copy of the BendFilm guide around town for showings.
Your schedule in a nutshell
• 4 p.m. Happy Hour pre-funk
Recommend 900 Wall or Joolz
• 5 p.m. Go see Ethel, the opening night film and stick around after for a Q and A with Rory Kennedy, the director and daughter of Ethel Kennedy
The Tower Theatre, 835 NW Wall St.
• 7:30 p.m. Catch the Opening Night Reception at The Oxford Hotel
• 8:30 Dinner Break
Pick your pleasure from our list of recommended restaurants
• 9 p.m. Opening Night After party
McMenamin’s Old St. Francis
700 NW Bond St.
• Later: Get yourself invited to the after, after party with our handy tips. See sidebar on next page.
• 9 a.m. Hangover breakfast at the D & D
Yes, there are other fancier places to go. Go to them if you must, but if you’re goal is fabulousness, you want the D. Recommend the bisquits and gravy. You’ll be back on top by mid-morning.
• Late Morning Showings
Buffalo Girls or We Grew Wings
• Early Afternoon Showings
Birth Story or It’s a Disaster
• Late Afternoon Showings
The Kill Hole or The Revolutionary
• 5:30 p.m. Deadfall with Pass the Salt, Please
Go see this full length feature film with names you know, accompanied by the raunchy dirty-talking film about an elderly couple, featuring, again, names you know. One of the more fun pairings of the festival.
• Dinner Break
Do something fancy.
• 8 p.m. Girl Walk//All Day
See our review.
• 9:30 p.m. 2012 Dance Party with DJ and open bar
• Later: After party
• 9 a.m. Rigoberto’s
Worth the drive to Third Street for the by-far-the-best breakfast burrito in Bend. Get the potato, bacon, egg and cheese. It’s cheap and comes with giant hunks of bacon inside. The cheese oozes.
1913 NE 3rd St.
• Late Morning Showings
Dead Dad with Treehouse, Comedy Shorts or the Future Filmmakers Session
• 10:30 a.m. The “A-Ha” Moment
Panelists discuss the moment they knew they had a winning film idea.
The Nature of Words
• Early Afternoon Showings
Buffalo Girls with PUSH Tunisia or Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton As Himself with Krakow
• 1 p.m. Lost and Found
In-depth look at a documentary about the founding of an orphanage in Uganda by a Bend couple. Panelists include a child soldier, Bend couple Bob and Carol Higgins and film director Sandy Cummings.
The Nature of Words
• Late Afternoon
Dead Man’s Burden, Birth Story or We Grew Wings
• Early Evening
Wonder Women! with Gaula- River of Gold and Silver, The Kill Hole or A Big Love Story
• 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Meet the Filmmakers
Snacks, brews, actors and directors. Prime getting-invited-to-after-parties territory.
• 7 p.m. Awards Ceremony
Find out who gets the top prizes!
• Late Evening
Gimme the Loot with Benchmark, or Shorts Block
• 7 p.m. Awards Ceremony
If you’ve been diligent enough to know the films inside and out, it’s worth your time to see who wins. Complimentary beers.
• 9:30 p.m. Closing Night Party
One last big hurrah.
• 9 a.m. Victorian or CHOW
It’s your last day. Blow it out with a spiffy breakfast at The Vic or the hyper-local CHOW. Start the day off right with a Bloody at either location.
• 10:30 a.m. Best Documentary
See the best of the best of real life shown through the lens.
• 12 p.m. BendFilm Kids
This is the time to bring the kids—check out a sweet film about forest creatures to an excellent soundtrack.
• 1 p.m. Best Narrative
Catch the best plot-driven flick of the festival.
• 3:30 p.m. Audience Award
The people will speak. This is the film audiences prefer most.
• 6 p.m. Best of Show
Don’t miss the final screening of the most well-done of them all.
• Late Cocktail Hour
You’ve done the weekend up right. Reward yourself with a wind down cocktail at any downtown establishment.
What NOT to Wear
Gentlemen, we want to see you stepping out and slapping on some cologne this weekend. That’s just good BendFilm fun. But, one very strong suggestion—do not wear bling jeans.
It is pretty much NEVER okay for a male with a pair (and I’m not talking jeans here) to wear anything on his ass that has been bejeweled, bedazzled, besequined or embroidered in any way.
So, if you are a man contemplating purchasing a pair of bling jeans, currently own a pair of bling jeans or someone has recently purchased you a pair of bling jeans and you’re not quite sure when and where it’s appropriate to wear them, we have created a simple but incomplete list of occasions and conditions when it is OKAY for you to wear them:
• You are trying NOT to get laid.
• You want to draw attention away from your new Mike Tyson face tattoo
• You’re Chris Angel
• You’re on the way to the airport to pick up your mail order bride
• You use the phrase “that’s so dope”
• You’re married to one of the Housewives of New Jersey
• You and some friends are going to see the movie “Magic Mike”
• You currently own or have read even an excerpt from the book, Here’s the Situation; A Guide to Creeping on Chicks, Avoiding Grenades, and Getting in Your GTL on the Jersey Shore
• You bought a corvette between the ages of 45 and 50
• You have uttered the phrase, “If I told you that you had a great body would you hold it against me?”
• You’re on your way to the tanning salon.
• Your mom still does your laundry.
• You’re an Oakland Raider fan and you’re not from Oakland.
• You say “peace” instead of “good-bye”
• You have more than two baby mamas.
• You use the term baby mama.
• You have a shirt that reads “Mustache Rides 50 cents”
Girl Walk // All Day
Girl Walk // All Day is a sunny, feature-length music/dance video that follows a girl and a small handful of other players as they explore NYC via dance. The whole movie is set to Girl Talk's 71-minute, hook-heavy album, All Day, which forever changed how we think of sampling music.
This movie is for fans of American mash-up artist Girl Talk (Greg Gillis), dance enthusiasts, proponents of silliness and explorers of public places, young people, old people and people.
Ina May Gaskin is super bright and well-spoken. This wise midwife has been the face of non-hospital births in this country for decades.
Her book, Spiritual Midwifery, first printed in 1976 and now in its 4th edition, is the guide for many a woman planning to have babies naturally. The movie is the real life version of so many of the kinds of stories that appear in that book. Gaskin attends breech births, births where the baby’s shoulder is stuck, water births, and births where the mother delivers her baby herself. All are shown in graphic real life birth scenes.
The film also takes a real look at The Farm, the chunk of rural land in Tennessee where Gaskin and her husband Stephen started an intentional community (read commune). Not everyone was happy with how things went.
Overall, the movie is a powerful reminder that almost all women have the strength and their bodies have the knowledge to deliver babies safely, without the influence of the modern healthcare machine.
If you only go to ONE movie during the entire four days of BendFilm, go see Deadfall.
Documentaries are great and all, but sometimes we all crave the Hollywood-type movie, without all the Hollywood bs. This is it. It's full of action, sex, and, somewhat rare for BendFilm, big-time actors.
Highwayman Kris Kristofferson and Academy Award winner Sissy Spacek star as the parents of troubled ex-boxer, Jay (Charlie Hunnam) who meets up with mega-babe and fugitive-on-the-run Olivia Wilde. Guns, suspense, sexiness, intrigue...what more could you want? Plot? Yeah, it's got that, too.
The Kill Hole
War follows people home. We've never seen a movie more successfully describe the heartbreaking reality of veterans trying to re-assimilate than The Kill Hole. Two characters return from the Middle East with an ax to grind, which they sharpen in the wilds of Oregon.
Sweeping views of the Cascade Range, clear-cuts and wide rivers are the backdrop for the uncomfortable storyline of people living in our midst for whom war is still very real.
Far and away one of the most interesting films at the festival this year. Don’t get shut out by the sold out crowds at this one. Go early.
A close up look at the life of the Ethel Kennedy. More than that, it’s a chance to better understand the larger Kennedy family and their continuing role in American politics. Director Rory Kennedy, Ethel’s daughter, will Skype in for a Q and A after the show on Thursday night.
Where to Eat
This restaurant on the lower level of the Oxford Hotel is ground zero minus 10 feet for a whole lot of BendFilm action. Right across the hall, filmgoers will stream in and out of the Minnesota Ballroom. This is going to be a hotspot, so expect a wait but no shortage of people watching opportunities. Prime bling jean spotting territory.
One of Bend’s quietest little “jewels,’ this Middle Eastern restaurant casts just the right kind of ambiance for an upscale BendFilm break. The list of specialty cocktails here is long and sexy. The menu is a litany of foods you’ve never tried and won’t forget. Excellent location on Wall means you’re still in the middle of the action even though you’re out of the fray.
Get to the happy hour here, from 3 to 6 p.m., if you can. Shrimp, oysters, fancy burgers and a whole array of delicious little bites are offered up for great prices. If you miss that window, go with friends and order a bunch of their small plates. Some of the most fun dining in downtown. Half a dozen flights of wine cement that reputation.
Voted best service by Source voters again and again, Zydeco will feel like red carpet treatment even if the menu hasn’t been updated in some time. Still the options are solid. The tables outside sit under warmers built into the eaves. Great spot for boozy coffee or hot chocolate. If you’re eating, the shrimp and grits is awesome and the specials almost never miss.
If you really want to feel like a SoCal socialite, go here. A fountain kind of art thing hangs over the main dining room, adding a certain dimension to the space that will make you feel cool. The sushi is, hands down, the best in town. They’ll be aware of the crowds they’ll be getting over the weekend and will have prepped with some killer specialty rolls. For fun, get the beef you cook on the hot rock. Cocktails are also primo.
New to the block, Barrio has added some flavor and spice to Minnesota. If you hit them during the day, expect tacos, chilaquiles and other quick bites. Better to go for happy hour, when they offer tapas or at night when you can dig into the giant plate of Paella. Atmosphere is a little odd, what with the top-notch Spanish wines and the pastel cruiser bikes above the bar.
Great excuse to try Bend’s newest downtown spot. Noi took over Typhoon!’s old location. The food is even better than before. We consider it to be the lightest and freshest Thai in town. If you like the hot stuff, fear not, they offer a range of options to bring the pain.
Photo taken by Philip Robert.