ReelAbilities is a nationwide film festival, with each major location around the US running it’s slate of films which are all selected to show that just because you have a handicap doesn’t mean you can’t handle life – truth in that statement, definitely.
For the first time this year, ReelAbilities Boston is moving into the crowded March 1-May 1 MetroBoston festival window; previously they’ve run films in January and February. But not this year – this year they’re taking on all of the other major film festivals. But there should be smoother going than if they were a brand new festival trying to break in – their local sponsor is the long running Boston Jewish Film Festival, which is a formidable publicity machine with their screenings.
The festival starts off with a special screening today of last year’s SXSW smash TransFatty Lives, the story of DJ TransFatty, whose life was turned upside down when he was diagnosed with ALS a few years ago. This special screening at Showcase Cinema Revere will also have a reception afterward – the festivities kick off at 10 AM this morning.
Tomorrow, they officially get underway by teaming up with Wicked Queer: Boston LGBT Film Festival (also ongoing right now) for their Opening Night film, the Boston premiere of the critically-acclaimed Brazilian drama The Way He Looks, a coming of age story focusing on a blind teenager and two friends as they try to sort out their relationships with each other, and their lives. Screening will take place at 6:30 PM at Arts/Paramount on the Emerson College campus at Downtown Crossing. You can get more info on the film and ticket information from Wicked Queer here.
eCinemaBoston will have the daily lineup for you right here, but a word of note – ReelAbilities is scheduling films all over the MetroBoston area over the next two weeks, and there may be some travel involved. You might want to put one date in particular on your schedule – Wednesday April 13. That is the day ReelAbilities is sponsoring the Boston area premiere of the incredible film that was the 2013 winner of BOTH a Poppy and A Rosie from Subject:CINEMA’s annual Poppies and Rosies awards for best documentary at Marlborough High School. The Crash Reel is the story of pro snowboarder Kevin Pearce, a rising superstar from Vermont who was the best hope for beating golden boy Shaun White in the mens’ superpipe competition at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics when a horrific accident during training on New Years Eve 2009 changed his life forever. If you’re a snowboarding fan, you already know the basics, and why the phrase “I Ride For Kevin” became a catchphrase that year. This film looks at the accident and his life since then, and I guarantee that you will come out of this film a changed person, It will make you laugh, it will make your cry (no, make that BAWL), and it will make you see that life is fragile and one second can change a lifetime. If you’ve never seen it, PLEASE make an effort to catch it when it comes to the festival. And for more on Kevin, the film, and his #LoveYourBrain charity, please check out the official website for the film.
OK, enough bloviating for one of my personal favorite films – check out the whole of the lineup at the official website for the festival, and be here every day the next two weeks for a complete rundown on the films. And don’t forget to check out our complete coverage of this and other area festivals on Subject:CINEMA‘s annual “Boston Springs A Fethival” shows the weekend of May 21st!