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The 1994 Dallas Video Festival mixes equal parts ineptitude and brilliance

Visual Performance. (Nov. 20, 4 p.m., TV Lounge.) The two highlights of this four-piece program of performance art and music video-style pieces prove you can use the crudest of materials and still make a wonderfully entertaining short. Joe Gibbons' Pretty Boy features the filmmaker trying to pick a fight with what appears to be a Ken doll, lambasting him as a "narcissistic son of a bitch" for his primping habits and ultimately discovering the doll's kinky side. Mark Smith and Doug Skinner's Cocktail Party features the filmmakers recalling an evening with two ladies they ruined by being a bit too ambitious with the mixed drinks. The sequence is filmed with Mister Rogers-style handpuppets. (JF)

When Billy Broke His Head...And Other Tales of Wonder. (Nov. 19, 1 p.m., TV Diner.) This documentary by Minneapolis writer and activist Billy Golfus, a former DJ who suffered brain damage and partial paralysis in a car accident, charts the man's course from embittered drifter to unlikely political candidate (he ran for the city's park board and lost). Like Roger and Me, it shifts between propaganda, clowning, and road-movie ramblings, eventually taking us cross-country and introducing us to some of Golfus' disabled pals and heroes, revealing an intricate community that exists beneath the sightlines of most able-bodied folk. Although it's overlong and sometimes unfocused, When Billy Broke his Head is a delight. Its chief virtue is Golfus himself, a shambling, quick-witted troublemaker with charisma to spare. Ruth Leitman in attendance. (MZS)

Wildwood, New Jersey. (Nov. 20, 3 p.m., TV Lounge.) The title location is billed as "the last great American blue-collar seaside carnival town," and Ruth Leitman and Carol Cassidy clearly love it. They explicate both the dynamics of Wildwood and the concerns of its young, tough women with great care and humor. But while the film is beautiful to look at (like a Bruce Springsteen song come to life), there's too much of it. (

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