The idea is brilliant: Give aspiring and professional video-makers a prop, a location, a theme and 24 hours to produce an original five-minute video. Make it a race to the finish line. The results? Ahem...well...judging by last year's entrants in the Dallas Video Festival's 24 Hour Video Race, "brilliant" might be a tad too strong a word. But so what? You were expecting Orson Welles? It's not about the product, after all, but about the process of sparking the creative energies of a disparate group of Dallas film and video wannabes. Sounds good? Call it a success then. Last year's prop was a mechanical wind-up toy eyeball; the theme, "photo finish"; the location, a school. The clock's ticking. Come up with something clever. To make matters harder, none of the 78 teams that entered was told in advance what the parameters were. (Same goes this year.) It sounds a bit like one of those corporate team-building exercises that are the scourge of cubicle-dwellers. (OK, teams, create a poster showing your emotional commitment to double-entry bookkeeping.) The results ranged from surreal to silly to amusing. Our favorite of the few we sampled was Ed's Adult Driving School, in which the eyeball became a mini-camera used by a lecherous driving instructor to capture cleavage shots of one very hot student. Citizen Kane, it ain't. Nevertheless, Ed's... and many of the other videos offered surprisingly sharp production values and editing, some flashes of humor and performances that did not universally suck. Not bad. Maybe Steve Martin in Bowfinger was right. All motion pictures cost around $2,800 to produce. The rest are just frills. The race to become the next Martin Scorsese--or Ed Wood--begins at midnight May 9 at Wahoo Grill, 7402 Greenville Ave. A few minutes before midnight, teams will be given the theme, prop and other surprises. The race ends at The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza's Seventh Floor. Screenings and judging will take place at 7:30 p.m. May 13 through May 15 at the Angelika Film Center. Call 214-478-8700. --Patrick Williams

A Walking Contradiction

Today's topic: Think of three words that, strung together, represent the most unlikely person, place, event or thing. These should get you started: confirmed alien abduction; truthful trustworthy lawyer; peace on earth; feminist Baptist minister. Jann Aldredge-Clanton might argue the last one. She's an honest-to-goodness, card-carrying, Bible-thumping feminist Baptist minister. Her current day job is chaplain coordinator for oncology at Baylor University Medical Center, but she's also a counselor, lecturer, professor and writer. Aldredge-Clanton is strutting her unusual stuff and signing her new book, Breaking Free: The Story of a Feminist Baptist Minister, at Barnes & Noble, 7700 W. Northwest Highway, on Saturday at 1 p.m. Aldredge-Clanton's philosophy involves feminist theology's "reclamation" of the feminine face of God. Sophia or Hokmah, she says, is a scripturally valid reference for Christ. Her research on Christ-Sophia began with a single thought. "The question came to me, 'If God can include three persons, can't God include two genders?'" she says. "It came as a personal revelation of great power and freedom." Aldredge-Clanton's new book is a personal memoir that encourages inclusive and liberating theology and church. Call 214-739-3643. --Annabelle Massey Helber

Blooming With Variety
Festival sprouts musical talent

Richardson's Wildflower! Arts and Music Festival has earned its reputation as North Texas' best civic celebration because it features high-profile music acts. While other spring flings were trying to pass off area cover bands as talent, Wildflower! sprang for some of the better-known acts. Now that the other 'burbs are catching up, Wildflower! has upped the ante with even more acts this year in more genres. Friday's lineup features Prince protégés Morris Day and the Time, husky-voiced pop singer Taylor Dayne, rock pranksters Smash Mouth and the vintage swing stylings of Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. Saturday stars guitar god Peter Frampton, blues guitarist Jonny Lang, blues vocalist Shemekia Copeland and local country-rock favorites the Old 97's. Sunday wraps up the festival with the Janis Joplin-less Big Brother and Holding Company, the Marshall Tucker Band's Southern rock, folk legends the Kingston Trio and pop jazz vocalist Roberta Flack. Galatyn Park, Galatyn Parkway and Central Expressway. Admission is $10 daily, but only $5 before 4 p.m. Saturday. Call 972-744-4581. --Jay Webb

Tag It and Bag It

American Airlines could learn a thing or two from the Arlington Museum of Art. When the going gets tough, for instance, the tough don't file bankruptcy. They have a tag sale. When somebody slashes your budget, get a bunch of creative heads together and litter the sidewalk with an artful conglomeration of donated household stuff, furniture, collectibles, original art, old vinyl--the quirkier the better--for a good cause. "These are difficult times for all of the arts, and the arts groups in Arlington are certainly no exception," tag sale chairman and AMA trustee Jan Blanchard says. "The city of Arlington was recently forced to eliminate all arts funding due to a budget shortfall. We wanted to do something fun, fast and creative to replace some of this cash." The first AMA Tag Sale will be held on Main Street in Arlington on Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. If you hurry, you still may be able to donate items to the sale or volunteer during the sale. For general info, to have donations picked up or to volunteer to help, call 817-275-4600. --Annabelle Massey Helber

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