California Dreams at the Sarasota Film Fest

Thanks to my sweet and generous co-worker Carrie, I was able to attend one of the independent films at the Sarasota Film Fest.

First kudos to the SFF which struck me as very well organized. The Rochester Film Fest in comparison seemed haphazard and confused in comparison. But then again, I felt haphazard and confused in my “Yukon” years, so I chalk it up to lack of vitamin D.

The film I took in was “California Dreams” by Mike Ott. I usually find docs such as this, a story about people trying to make it (whether it be show business as in this case, or business or art, etc) as sad that there are just too many talented people in the world for everyone to be successful.

However, in “California Dreams”, the folks aren’t talented, yet are delusional in their desire and aspirations. This is not intended to be a put down; striving toward a goal is never a waste of time in my opinion. Let’s face it, I, too, am delusional in my playwright aspirations as I was in my stand up aspirations. The main difference is that I am fully self-aware and know I simply don’t have the time or talent to make it big. And I’m ok with that.

The “California Dreams” actors may be self-aware, too, but Ott’s focus was on their desire, attempts and pomposity each had of getting there. While somewhat sad in the people’s futility, the doc was touching in how Ott listened to, and honored, each person as an important human being whether they ever reach success or not.

Mike Ott was actually at the fest and may have done a Q&A afterward, but alas, I had to scoot to work. I do have a question into is website for the film (which is gorgeous in and of itself, by the way). If I get an answer, I will add an extra post as an addendum.

Somewhat of a waa waa waa (downer noise) was that after Ott’s introduction prior to the film, his initial comments were not impressive, “Yeh, I had an interesting night after the film’s showing getting drunk and hit by a car.” (I saw no visible injuries or bruises). Like dude, you don’t need to share your Valley Girl, ok Guy, mentality. Show your depth, not your underwear, if you know what I mean.

At any rate, I did enjoy the film, especially in its frankness about real life issues (sexuality). A few conservative folks left I noticed, but that’s what happens sometimes when people are faced with reality.

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