Updated: Jul 30, 2020
Covid-19 failed to stop Reno’s annual movie festival, despite the closing of traditional venues. Joining with Artown for several free presentations, Reno’s Cordillera Festival put its “summer shorts” lineup at the West Wind El Rancho Drive-in. I watched all seven entries and love the quality, ingenuity, and insights the dedicated filmmakers create. Their tone and techniques vary, with animation and live action covering such topics as school violence and thwarted romance. A piece called The Translator provides enjoyable laughs, while another called The Present effectively blends tension and relief, effectively enough to win the festival's Grand Jury prize for live action shorts. The shorts schedule represents just part of the festival, which includes online viewing options with details available at C*I*F*F dot org. Keep an eye out for the festival's feature length Grand Jury winner, Pacified, a rewarding story set in a shantytown drug district of Rio de Janero.