Friday, April 13, 2018

Bickford’s Black Maria Film Festival Wednesday, April 18

BMFF Graphic for 2018

(Morristown, NJ)— The Bickford Theatre’s popular Film Series continues with the Black Maria Film Festival on Wednesday, April 18, at 7:30 PM with the screening of the recently announced winners in this year’s juried competition.

Since its founding in 1981, the Black Maria Film Festival has been celebrating the diversity, invention, and vitality of short films through an international juried film competition. The films encompass four major genres including narrative, experimental, animation, and documentary. Unlike other film festivals such as Sundance which bring filmmakers and their films to one location for recognition, the Black Maria Film Festival takes the winning films to venues all over the world from Morristown, New Jersey to Rome, Italy.

The Film Festival’s Executive Director Jane Steuerwald will emcee the program and introduce nine of this year’s winning films. The selection includes short films representing all four genres, ranging from animation, comedy, and drama to cutting edge experimental film.

The evening will begin with “Game,” a narrative film centered on high school basketball tryouts where a new kid in town makes an impression on the coach, but has talent that threatens some of the players. The new boy clearly has talent, heart and drive, but he also has a big secret which gives the film a fascinating twist.

In another film, “The Driver is Red,” the filmmaker uses animation to follow the story of a secret agent searching for a mysterious man and then makes a shocking discovery in the remote outskirts of Buenos Aires.

The documentary “Little Potato,” tells the story of a boy growing up gay in the Soviet Union and the adventurous escape to America by his mother and him. Saving its most unexpected revelation until the end, the film depicts the inspiring and timely story of two immigrants taking on the American Dream.

The other films slated for screening on April 18 include the first-person documentary “Lion in a Box,” a film by a talented Spanish filmmaker entitled “Mama,” the animated Bourée dance “Dandelion,” the touching narrative “Happy Birthday, Mango!,” and two experimental films, “Analog Orange” and “Sans Chlorophyll.”

The Bickford Film Festival concludes on Wednesday, May 23, with the screening of Vincent Van Gogh: A New Way of Seeing. This film blends reenactment scenes and curatorial interviews from the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam to explore both Van Gogh the painter and Van Gogh the person. Robin Neal of On the Box called the film “one of the best I’ve seen depicting the live of Vincent Van Gogh.”

Tickets for the final two screenings of the new Bickford Film Series are $15 for the General Public; $12 for Museum Members; and $10 for Students (18 & under or with valid college ID). Tickets may be purchased online at, by phone at (973) 971-3706, or in person at the Bickford Theatre Box Office. The Morris Museum’s Bickford Theatre is located at 6 Normandy Heights Road in Morristown, NJ, and offers free parking and full accessibility. Box office hours for phone sales are Monday through Friday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Walk-up hours are Tuesday through Friday, 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.

Graphic: The Black Maria Film Festival will come to the Bickford Theatre on Wednesday, April 18. Graphic provided courtesy of the Thomas A. Edison Media Arts Consortium.

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