|8:30PM||Live Music by Dustin Wong|
|11:30PM||After Party at Fontanas (105 Eldridge St. btwn Grand St. and Broome St.)|
Lower East Side
350 Grand Street, New York, NY 10002
F, J, M, Z to Delancey Street-Essex Street; B, D, Q to Grand Street
Rooftop opens our 15th festival with a flash of creativity, a splatter of inspiration, and short epic stories that could save your life.
A simple line drawing fleetingly becomes a recognizable face, then morphs into something disturbing. An obliterating splatter of paint describes the history of the universe. A prophesy of doom comes blissfully alive. The forces of creation and destruction battle epically within and around us at all times, at atomic, 8-bit and astronomical levels. David O’Reilly’s masterful fragmented universe The External World reminds us “Remember this is merely a cartoon. None of this is real. . . . There is only a silent emptiness spreading infinitely in all directions.” But at this, the start of Rooftop’s 15th year of existence, we begin with short films that celebrate creativity as a necessary means to survival. The piano players know, “She can’t kill me while I’m playing.”
- Mark Elijah Rosenberg
Love & Theft (Andreas Hykade | Germany | 7 min.)
The driving pulse of transformation reveals moments of terror and beauty amidst images familiar and domestic.
Oops (Chris Beckman | Springfield, MO | 10 min.)
Conjuring creative connections out of mundane happenstance, Oops—composed entirely of appropriated YouTube videos—lies somewhere between a home-video mixtape and a postmodern travelogue.
The External World (David O'Reilly | Ireland | 15 min.)
A boy learns to play the piano.
Heartpocalypse (Matthew Silver | Brooklyn, NY | 7 min.)
In a dynamic bit of spontaneous street art, a crazed doomsayer ranting underneath a Brooklyn subway track brings to life his worst nightmares—and the crowd loves it.
Big Bang Big Boom (Blu | Italy | 10 min.)
This ingenious animation uses the city as its canvas in a short unscientific story about evolution and its possible consequences.
Ledo and Ix Battle Epically (Emily Carmichael | Brooklyn, NY | 4 min.)
The third in a series of films about two adventurers in an old-school fantasy video game. Ledo, the tiny 8-bit heroine, has been obsessively upgrading her weapons and tirelessly honing her attacks, all in preparation for great battles that have never materialized. Supported by the Rooftop Filmmakers’ Fund.
Yearbook (Carter Smith | New York, NY | 10 min.)
The yearbook photo never tells the whole story in this creepy portrait of small town high school sexuality from the award-winning creator of Bugcrush.
Pioneer (David Lowery | Dallas, TX | 15 min.)
A father (Will Oldham) tells his little boy the most epic bedtime story ever.
"It’s extremely technical stuff, marvelously fast, and so rhythmically precise that it generates momentum with ease, and many of the songs are notably driving for music without any traditional percussion on hand. But Wong’s compositions are also melodious, groovy, and relatively concise, as liable to inhabit your hips and heart as they are to tickle your brain. When he aims high, soaring, strawberry-hued leads rear up from the unraveling tangles of arpeggios and things get airborne quickly. In his more wistful moments, Wong writes and plays with a tenderness that’s featherlight, each track exuding warmth in generous measure."
-Evan Burrows, Tiny Mix Tapes
"The sections of “Infinite Love,” a continuous 40-minute composition, tend to start with plucked arpeggios and expand, sometimes taking on a melody, sometimes rippling in ever-wider arcs, sometimes melting into feedback and echo. The music is always heading somewhere promising."
-Jon Pareles, New York Times