Drunken Film Festival Brings Film to Odd Places

The Drunken crew shows films in casual and colorful climes — bars, mostly, and other unusual venues.


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Mad God is one of the Drunken Film Festival movies.

Photo courtesy Drunken Film Fest

The clever folks behind the Drunken Film Festival indulged in a bit of hyperbole when they came up with the moniker of their annual movie venture. They don’t really want the audiences to be smashed out of their gourds. That wouldn’t be conducive to appreciating the efforts of the filmmakers and might even be disrespectful. Like the programmers of every festival ’round the globe, the Drunken crew loves movies and reveres artists. That said, they also like the notion of watching films in casual and colorful climes. Bars, mostly, and other unusual venues.

The festival’s second Oakland edition, under the continued direction of Arlin Golden, revisits all of the unique establishments that participated in last year’s movable feast. The New Parkway hosts the Oct. 4 opening night program, a salute to East Bay icon and Academy Award-winning animator Phil Tippett featuring the first three parts of his otherworldly epic Mad God. (This is Drunken’s only ticketed show; every other event is free.)

Local filmmakers corral the spotlight the following night, with works ranging from 30 seconds to 20 minutes, at Forage Kitchen. Check out a new favorite watering hole—and discover a new favorite filmmaker—when an ever-changing lineup plays The Layover (Oct. 6), Stay Gold Deli (Oct. 7), Lost & Found (Oct. 8), Telegraph Beer Garden (Oct. 9), Eli’s Mile High Club (Oct. 10) and Classic Cars West (Oct. 11). Warehouse 416 plays host to the awards party on Oct. 12.

Alcohol has the effect of shortening one’s attention span, which may or may not have anything to do with the Drunken Film Festival’s special affinity for shorts. If you don’t like what’s on screen, don’t worry. It’ll be succeeded by another film in the time it takes to, well, order another drink.

Drunken Film Festival, Oct. 4-12, free, various bars, Oakland, DrunkenFilmFest.com.

This article originally appeared in our sister publication, The East Bay Monthly.

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