[THREE NIGHTS ONLY] This year, the dedicated people behind Filmed by Bike asked me to serve on the selection panel—and, as I did, I learned a couple of things about the annual festival. First, the organizers are passionate and optimistic in a way that speaks well for the city. Second, the festival is more an expression of that urban utopian hope than it is any kind of showcase for innovative or high-quality moviemaking. Do you like bicycles? You will find a lot to like here. Do you like cinema? You will find a lot of bicycles here. There are moments, however: The Denver-based video All You Haters (Suck My Balls), which screens in the first program (7, 9 and 11 pm Friday, April 15), is a delightful display of ridiculous braggadocio, with several chic young people sing-shouting the titular concept in incongruous settings. In the same show, there's Cyclocross on Kodachrome, which Lars C. Larsen (nope, not that one) managed to get processed before the last development lab shuttered; the images are ghostly and impeccably Northwestern. They put to shame much of the the fest's hi-def video, which looks like an audition for a job at Wieden+Kennedy, and much of the low-def video, which looks like home movies. Again, this shouldn't discourage you from celebrating bicycles, which look like good exercise in any format. But fetish ain't always art.
- Critic's Score: 40
- Watch the trailer