member tickets here
20 minutes
Director: Joe Oppenheimer
Year: 2016
Country: USA

Fri 9:30 pm RUSH , Sat 9:30 pm RUSH , Mon 3:00 pm RUSH , Mon 9:30 pm RUSH

Oregon Premiere

A public defender has minutes to save her 16-year-old client from a life sentence for murder by convincing him to take a plea deal for a crime he only technically committed. To save this boy, she will have to break him. 

Director’s Statement: Joe Oppenheimer 

In the majority of cases I handled as a criminal defense lawyer, a plea was the worst option. This was especially so in juvenile cases concerning opportunistic crimes where youth who lacked a capacity for consequential thinking often also lacked a defense. These kids faced far graver sentences at trial then they could have ever anticipated. At some level I feel complicit in the system that condemns children like this. I had always wanted to make a difference. However, mostly my job was about making the inevitable a certainty.


Plays with:

Election Night 
Short Documentary
8 minutes
Director: Ryan Scafuro
Year: 2017
Country: United Kingdom, USA

Oregon Premiere

A crowd of locals, American ex-patriots, and assorted foreigners gather at a boozy London pub to watch the 2016 US presidential election. As dawn breaks, emotions escalate and the event takes a turn for the worse. 

Director’s Statement: Ryan Scafuro 

A few days before Election Day, it occurred to me that the results of the vote wouldn’t be called until 5:00 or 6:00 o’clock in the morning London time. As a relatively new American transplant to the UK, I didn’t really have anybody to watch the results come in with. I looked online and found a pub that was going to stay open until 7:00am for an all-night viewing party. It was going to be another historic vote regardless of the outcome; this time I wanted to film it in whatever capacity I could.


Hijo por Hijo 
11 minutes
Director: Juan Avella
Year: 2017
Country: USA, Venezuela

Oregon Premiere

The life of a Venezuelan kidnapper is turned upside down when his own son is kidnapped by the father of his latest victim. Subtitles 

Director’s Statement: Juan Avella 

Every day, hundreds of Venezuelan citizens are victims of the lucrative crime of kidnapping. I wanted to condemn such actions and raise global awareness. But I wanted to portray the kidnappers as complex human beings, humanize them if you like. But what intrigued me the most was giving the criminal a taste of his own medicine and forcing him to explore the emotional roller coaster he inflicts on others.


Short Documentary
15 minutes
Director: Drea Cooper, Zackary Canepari
Year: 2016
Country: USA

US Premiere

AIFF alumni filmmakers Drea Cooper and Zackary Canepari (T-Rex-AIFF2015; The Bionic Man and The Dog-AIFF2016) tell the inspiring story of Daniel Kish, a blind man who has earned the moniker “the remarkable Batman” by navigating his world of darkness using sound, or echolocating, making clicking sounds in a conversation with his environment. Having taught himself to “see” with sound, he now teaches others to do the same. 

Directors’ Statement: Zackary Canepari, Drea Cooper 

Drea woke up one morning to a random email. It was from a person in France who had seen our California is a Place series. He read an article about Daniel Kish and thought we might be interested. We quickly read the story and couldn’t believe it. Could someone really teach himself how to echolocate like a bat? How is this even possible? We had to find out. 

Short Docs sponsored by Ashland Home Net/Project A (Jim Teece & Dena Matthews)


Virtual Reality Hands-on Gallery and Docs

Saturday, April 8, 2-5pm | FREE (no ticket required) | ScienceWorks Hands-on Museum

1-2pm & 4-5pm VR Gallery: Experience a sampling of innovative animations created expressly for VR. Available for viewing on HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and Samsung Gear headsets and suitable for ages 12 and older.

3-4pm Docs on VR:
AIFF2017 filmmakers Drea Cooper and Zack Canepari (Kish) will answer questions and discuss the shooting of their VR doc, Policing Flint, and guide viewers through some of their favorite online VR doc experiences.

Don’t forget to bring your IOS or Android smartphones and earbuds/headphones so we can provide you with VR headsets and help you set up VR apps.


The Last Leatherman of the Vale of Cashmere 
14 minutes
Director: Greg Loser
Year: 2016
Country: USA

Oregon Premiere

Men have always met men in the Vale of Cashmere. An aging man takes an irreverent trip down memory lane as he visits the cruising destination of his youth, tucked away in a corner of Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. Here amidst the thickets where secrecy once reigned, he contemplates a new world. 

Director’s Statement: Greg Loser 

I’m fascinated by old men. Principally because I’ll be one before long. 


The Tables 
Short Documentary
15 minutes
Director: Jon Bunning
Year: 2017
Country: USA

World Premiere

A pair of outdoor ping pong tables draws players from disparate groups to a park in the heart of New York City. From the homeless to investment bankers to gang members—they all come for the love of the game. Playing through wind, dust, or rain, powerful and surprising connections are made and a heartwarming community is formed. 

Director’s Statement: Jon Bunning 

When I discovered the tables, I was immediately drawn to the diverse group of characters who played there, but I connected with one person in particular, an older African American gentlemen who unbeknownst to me at the time was in fact homeless. He had such a captivating personality and was instrumental in helping me make the film.​

Short Docs sponsored by Ashland Home Net/Project A (Jim Teece & Dena Matthews)


15 minutes
Director: Terence Nance
Year: 2016
Country: France, USA

Oregon Premiere

A visually gorgeous, narratively compelling reworking of the classic Romeo and Juliet love story. When Aminata and Badara meet on a bus in Marseille, France, they fall head-over-heels in love, joining their fates forever. Subtitles

Director’s Statement: Terence Nance 

Univitellin is a strange one, I didn’t know what it was as it was happening, but I think it became some mix of the insecurity of narcissism creeping into love and the insecurity of how culture tells stories about relationships creeping into love. 


White Face 
21 minutes
Director: Mtume Gant
Year: 2017
Country: USA

Oregon Premiere

Actor Charles Rogers hates his skin and the hardship that comes with it. Feeling trapped by his race, Charles believes he has found the solution to his problems: change his appearance to embody “whiteness” and erase all that he has ever been in order to join the group he believes he should be a part of. But is this actually possible? 

Director’s Statement: Mtume Gant 

As America debates the vision for its political and social future, there has been massive discourse around identity, privilege, discrimination, and what we as a country must do to right the wrongs done to those most marginalized by society. White Face explores this discourse through someone who on the surface appears to be an antagonist. But as we search deeper, we find that he is the embodiment of our country’s internal struggle to define itself and the tragic result of our inability to do so without any consensus. 

  1. JPR
  2. Project A
  3. Ashland HomeNet
  4. Rogue Creamery
  5. Studio AB
  6. SOPTV
  7. Coming Attractions Theatres
  8. Radio Medford
  9. TC Chevy
  10. Ashland Food Co-Op
  11. KDRV
  12. Noble Coffee Roasting
ashland independent film festival

17th Annual AIFF
April 12-16, 2018

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