Review: Bellville Star
Posted in the Bellville Forum
#1 May 10, 2009
Documentary Film "A Wall As Witness" personifies The Wall like no other film could ever do. Experience from within as though you have become the granite itself.
Bellville homegrown film maker and 1976 Clear Fork graduate, Rusty Farst,
of Video Biography has teamed with Grinning Dog Pictures founder Connie Bottinelli in producing a very different kind of war and sacrifice documentary. Their film “A WALL AS The Vietnam Memorial Wall, it has been called the wall that heals. The WITNESS” depicts the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington D.C. throughout an entire year, sometimes filming, remarkably, from inside the Wall’s perspective.
The film’s trailer “IT WAS A WAR” has just received the GOLD EMPixx Award. The EMPixx Awards honors excellence in the production of five categories of Moving Pixels: The EMPixx competition was created by David E. Carter, a multiple Emmy and Clio winner with a long history of innovation for the creative world. The distinctive EMPixx statuette signifies the industry’s transition from film to pixels.
The Documentary short is an official selection at the GI film Festival in Washington D.C. May 17th and screens at 1pm at the Carnegie Institute. The GI Film Festival is a 5 day event honoring the success and achievements of the American GI. Guest speakers will include Senator John McCain and Actor Kelsey Grammer. The Vietnam Conflict. Make no mistake. IT WAS A WAR. To purchase tickets for the event please see:
“Many people ask us how we filmed from inside the wall without special effects.” Remarks Farst.“Our film is unlike any other film ever created about this memorial. We enlisted the support of local artist Luc Century who created a sandblasted pane of glass that we shot through on location, and this gave us a perspective never before witnessed, granite personified. We could now portray the wall as a living entity.”
Farst has well over a dozen trips to the memorial with over 60 hours of footage and a cast of 19 interviewed.
This film highlights the interviews with those scarred by this 17 year conflict. Hear their stories:
Sit face to face with a South Vietnamese Colonel arrested the day American GI’s pulled out and who spent over 9 years in a Vietcong re-education prison.
Hear from The Memorials founder, Jan Scruggs, tell of the challenges to erect such a memorial that would become the nation's most visited and controversial of memorials.
Go toe to toe with the war’s most decorated soldier and a war resistor draft dodger.
Experience first hand from the artist who invented the sandblasting process and watch it come to life.
Look into the eyes of Gold Star Mother, Ann Sherman Wolcott, who lost her son, Rex at 19.
Ride alongside Artie Muller, the founder of "Rolling Thunder Inc." and hear the thunder of half a million motorcycles as they make their yearly journey from across the U.S. to this black Wall.
Each individual has their moment of discovery. To them, at that moment in time, The Wall is alive.
“Vietnam Veterans are the backbone of our society. They are the people who make our society work, the people who hold it all together”
Adrian Cronauer, radio disc Jockey from film Good Morning Vietnam.
"This Wall has been a vehicle by which Vietnam Veterans come out of the closet, to stand proud again. I feel it is from this altered paradigm that we today desire to support our warriors, even though we may not support the war.-Rusty Farst
Farst and Bottinelli have been working on this project for over 2 years are looking to obtain finishing funds to complete the project. The film is in the final stages of production and is scheduled for local screening on Sanibel Island in Florida at Big Arts Schein Hall on Veterans Day November 11, 2009.
Please visit the website to see more about the film or to become a sponsor.
www.awallaswitness.com or E-mail Rusty Farst at Jawsproductions@comcast.net
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