“Our mission is to show the range of voices women have,” Justina Walford says, speaking of round two of the Women Texas Film Festival, which kicks off at Studio Movie Grill on Aug. 16 and runs through the 19th.
Short films, long films, weird films and sweet films all will grace this year's roster of 49 films written, filmed, composed and directed by women. Savannah Bloch’s emotional drama And Then There Was Eve will set the tone opening night.
Walford, the festival's director and founder, came up with the idea last year. After moving to Texas from New York and Los Angeles, where there were festivals celebrating women in film, Walford realized there was nothing comparable here. Not content to wait for someone else to do something about the problem, Walford determined to found a film festival herself.
“Across the board, it seemed like women weren’t being showcased,” Walford says.
Eight months of work and planning later, Waldorf hosted the first Women Texas Film Festival at the Texas Theatre in Oak Cliff last August.
This year, the three-day docket boasts eight feature films, 38 short films and three virtual reality pieces, all with women at the helm.
Walford is a fan of horror, particularly Korean and Japanese, and says the horror short block "Dark Worlds, Dark Minds" is the strongest in this year’s WTxFF. But if horror is not your speed, there are plenty of other genres to choose from.
WTxFF features a little bit of everything in an effort to capture the breadth of female creativity. The films range in genre from drama to horror, LGBT, nonlinear and experimental.
“We are going to show the best of every way to make a film,” Walford says.
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While the festival is a celebration of female artists, Walford hopes that attendees will walk away with the impression that they saw great art, irrespective of gender.
“The goal is not for people to walk out and say, ‘Oh, we just saw a bunch of woman-made movies.’ You walk out, and you don’t really think of the gender of the director or the writer; you just saw a good movie,” Walford says.
If you don't know where to begin, Walford gave us a shortlist of her favorite films in the festival. Ekaj is a love story about two young male drifters, showing at 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17; Maya Dardel is about a famous writer seducing two younger writers with the promise of her estate, showing at 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug.19; and And Then There Was Eve intermingles loss, grief and new love in a feature-length drama, showing at 7 p.m. opening night.
For badges, $50 and up, and a full schedule, visit the Women Texas Film Festival’s ticketing site.