Durango Film Fest Soon to Hit Town


Emma Jaber, Reporter

All over the country, film festivals bring directors and locals together to show movies that shed light on important issues. Durango Film, the local, independent film society and festival is committed to developing cinema literacy in the minds of people in Durango. The festival connects independent filmmakers and their passion with local people from March 2 through the 6 in the heart of downtown Durango.

Jane Julian, a major contributor to the formation of the Durango Film society said that when she moved to Durango in 1991, she joined a group of people passionate about good movies. Their original goal was to bring at least one foreign or independent film to Durango each month to fill the void in Durango.

“When I moved to Durango, the only movie playing at the theatre was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and I saw a help ad for people interested in creating a film society. I knew that something had to change, and I couldn’t see Ninja Turtles one more time, so I joined,” said Julian.

When the society took off, Julian was approached with requests to turn it into an annual festival.

“Once it was a festival, I did a lot; from fundraising to sitting on the board. That was great and I started booking films for the Backspace Theatre before it closed. I am still booking films for the theatre behind Cuckoo’s. I have also been the program director of the Port Townsend Film Festival in Washington for eight years. I love it,” said Julian.

Many young people find large-scale productions more relatable and accessible. Sophomore Paige Moore, said that movies have to be exciting and hold your attention. The experience of going to the movies, for many people, is what keeps them going back, including Moore.

“I like going to the movies because of the whole experience. I like being able to watch the stories,” said Moore.

When Fr. Addee Hansen was asked what she liked about movies, she said that she was interested in all kinds.

“I like movies because they tell so many stories, they all have something different and fun about them,” said Hansen.

When asked about her interest in films, Julian said that she doesn’t prefer independent to large production, but they have to keep her interested.

“If I’m seeing a large scale production in theatre I want to be impressed. If it’s an independent film, I’m rooting for the director and appreciating their skill. Regardless, in every movie I see, that I like, there has to be something in it that’s relatable and the story has to be interesting,” said Julian.

In an interview with Spanish teacher Brett Wilson, he said that independent films hold a wide variety of stories, and that’s why he likes them.

“I enjoy independent films because they bring a perspective and an art to film that is lost in massive budgets,” said Wilson.

The experience of attending a film festival is very exciting, especially meeting new people, according to Julian.

“My favorite part of film festivals is the connections that I make with the people and the filmmakers. I always meet a lot of interesting people. A lot of people think it’s crazy that I can watch five films in one day, but I think it’s fun,” said Julian.