Lights, Camera, KIVA!

What did you do last weekend? Did you hang out in an Irish pub with a bunch of awesome people who think Kiva and The Go Game are the bee’s knees? Did you then play The Movie Game with all those people? And then maybe have a really well poured Guinness? And THEN have a film festival of amazing short films that had been created by teams mere MOMENTS before the screening? You probably didn’t do those things, and that is sad because it was SO MUCH FUN! And we raised over $1,100 for Kiva! Wheee!
One lovely Ms. Roxy Taghavian and myself had the pleasure of running a game to benefit Kiva this past weekend, and the results were amazing. Here are the short films created by these budding production companies:
First and foremost, you gotta check out the film that won ‘Best Picture’ at the Kiva/Go Game/Oscars Ceremony of Glory. This piece comes from a little production house that calls itself ‘Secret Handshake Productions.’ You would think from how well they work together that they have been friends for years, but this team was actually made up of many smaller teams on the day of the game! The acting, plot twists and costuming really came together to bring down the house at our judging. Check out their genre defining classic, ‘A Fistful Of Destiny’ here:

Walking away with the coveted ‘Best Actor’ award was a mega movie house called ‘Bladow!’ Their name really says it all – it’s an award winning onomatopoeia. The lead actor in this piece is able to captivate the audience with his gazelle like grace and mastery of martial arts, while instilling a sense of pride and wonder as he saves the world as Kappa Chow – the nunchucking hero who’s looking out for all of us. You can enjoy the power of his big screen debut in ‘Kappa Chow Saves The World.’

Heading home adorned with the title of ‘Best Direction/Cinematography’ was the humbly named group ‘World’s Best Productions.’ This crew was able to transform the gritty streets of San Francisco into a fantasy wonderland – the pivotal moment in their groundbreaking work involves a kaleidoscope and a dream. Move over, Harry Potter, it’s time for you to check out of the market for fantasy epics. Feast your eyes on ‘Unicorns and Rainbows.’

Our final decree of honor given out on Saturday was bestowed upon ‘Shaky Face Productions.’ They walked away with their heads (and hair) held high because they took home accolades for Best Makeup and Costume Design. This young team of up-and-comers really owned the screen. Step aside, Christopher Guest because ‘Best In Show’ is nothing compared to ‘Hairball: Dead Man’s Chest.’

Honorable mention most certainly goes to ‘Alienworks’ who brought us the unforgettable extraterrestrial romp through space (and The Metreon) with ‘Alien Savings.’ Watching this short is as much fun as playing in a ballpit with E.T. and a bunch of Mogwai and Thaddeus J. Furby.

And who could forget ‘Unfocused Features’ with their coming-of-age classic ‘2 good 2 Be 4Gotten,’ a seminal featurette that is sure to join the likes of such feel good chick flicks ‘Mean Girls’ and ‘The Babysitter’s Club.’ Their use of real time photo boothing is really cutting edge – not to mention that this bunch is solely responsible for the re-emergence of the ‘basketball shorts over jeans’ trend.

This next mini-masterpiece is not for the faint-of-heart, people with heart conditions or pregnant women. Because that’s how terrifying ‘Trophy Wife Productions’ can get. This terrifying tale of twisted fate really shocks and awes. It’s like a Rob Zombie flick, but it remains smart and keeps the mind activated throughout. And kudos for the visionary genius of using Freddie Krueger’s sweater in a whole different way. Make sure you’re not alone, the lights are on, and then sneak a peek at ‘Where’s Waldo.’

And, finally, a shout to the most plot and dialogue driven piece of the film festival. ‘Don’t Ask Attractions’ created a riveting plot-line of love, confusion and some of the funniest bloopers of the day in their very San Francisco romantic comedy, ‘Romance Bi Choice.’ Even technical malfunctions could not hold them down!

Thank you to everyone who played. We had a wonderful time, and it was great to spend the day with so many people who were not only funny, supportive and madly creative, but who also care so much about an organization as amazing as Kiva! Bravo to everyone – you are ALL winners!

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