Monday, May 23, 2005

Eavesdropping at SIFF

A large chunk of the fun and pain that comes with going to film festivals is directly related to sharing space with our beloved movie-going cohorts. I would say "mingling with" or "chatting with" or "enjoying the company of" the fest-goers, but the truth is, those who attend the Seattle International Film Festival (or any other festival, I'm sure) can run the gamut between friendly to freakish to snobbish to simply rude and vicious.

For instance, yesterday, after a long wait, the line I was in finally started plodding towards the door of the theater for an event called Afternoon with Joan Allen (who is gorgeous and funny and utterly charming in person, btw). At the last second, I had to dart out of line and run 10 feet to toss my empty coffee cup into a trashcan, and dart just as quickly back to my spot. To the middle-aged, otherwise pleasant-looking woman who had been in line directly in front of me for freakin' 45 mintutes, I guess it appeared that I was swooping in from nowhere to step into line. She snapped her head in my direction and growled in a voice not that much unlike Darth Vader, "DON'T EVEN THINK OF IT!" In cases like that, when even those behind you in line throw their hands up in the air in shock and solidarity, there is really nothing you can say in response. Sheesh.

So in honor of festival going, here are some of my favorite overheard comments from the first weekend:

[with a defeated voice, after leaving the screening of Wong-Kar Wai's much-anticipated 2046] "... It's just that it felt like it had three endings!"

[young fashionable guy with cellphone waiting in line] "The movie was good, but the reception was not that good. I hope OURS is better."

[people leaving an unknown screening] "I mean, it's just the fact that they gave her the rope, you know?"

[group of friends waiting in line] "You have to admit... everything that we've seen already--from all of today and all of yesterday--is better than anything we've seen in Season Two of The L-Word!"

[and finally...] "Did you know that on all possible surfaces of any hotel room, you can find traces of semen and blood?"
"Yeah, I've heard that."

Happy SIFF'n! :)