Cinematic Speed Dating

It takes far less than five minutes to convey complex emotion, which might be why we determine compatibility with others based on first encounters. That initial reaction is a sort of vetting process that comes in particularly handy in bar environments. Say a strange guy starts chatting you up: you’ll know in a matter of moments whether you would A.) like to see him again, or B.) need to banish him from your sacred bar stool’s circumference.

This instantaneous connection with The New also lends itself to film, which is why each year the Museum of Contemporary Art (770 NE 125th St., North Miami Beach) presents the Optic Nerve Film Festival. No more uncomfortable squirming! Each locally crafted, cinematic work clocks in at less than five minutes. Take Alexa Caravia’s short, Shoo: in it a man emerges from a washing machine wet and barefoot. His general dampness and exposed tarsals thwart his every attempt at normalcy. Other shorts, like Aiden Dillard’s abstract kaleidoscope-esque work, Carnival, will please film buffs searching for absurdity. All seventeen participating go-getters are flexing their film muscles tonight for a chance at the main prize: their film’s placement in MOCA’s permanent collection, and general bragging rights. Attend either of Thursday’s two screenings (7 and 9 p.m.) and have a short-lived fling with film. RSVP is a should-do: Call 305-893-6211, or email [email protected] Optic Nerve is free with museum entry ($5 for general admission). Visit
Thu., Aug. 7, 2008

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Jamie Laughlin