After an impressive inaugural year, the annual Hobnobben Film Festival is back and more eclectic than ever before. That’s a good thing too, because even more so than the year prior, the festival has such a generous offering for film buffs to devour and a handful of community based gatherings to stumble upon for those casually walking around downtown. Make no mistake about it – your June 15th through the 18th should be spent near and around the Main Street area to watch movies, celebrate the city, and experience one of the most unique film festivals in the entire region.
I was privileged to serve as a member of the 5 person jury for this year’s crop of movies, which altogether added up to 47 entries in every category except for the headlining “Eye-Opening” films. As someone who has seen just about all the festival has to offer, I have to say that you’re in for a treat. especially when you factor in all of the extra events Hobnobben has in store over the course of the weekend. Thursday night gives filmgoers a chance to meet and greet at the opening night gathering. Friday evening is be dedicated to Blocknobben in the Arts United Plaza featuring food trucks, local vendors, and live music. The night is capped off by an outdoor screening of the ’07 Coen Brother’s classic film, No Country for Old Men, accompanied by a live score. Saturday is the most loaded and diverse day of the weekend, featuring the Awards Ceremony at the Arts United Center as well as two Sound & Shadow Redux showings of classic silent films. As for the last day, there are four wide-ranging and well-received pictures to enjoy at the Cinema Center.
The festival program is available in digital format and can be downloaded at Hobnobben.org. Two breakouts from this year’s Sundance Film Festival – Dina and The Hero – both screen on Thursday and are must-sees for the weekend. I’d also recommend Lemon, One Week and a Day, and Lost in Paris. On Saturday afternoon there is the “Class Act” collection of student made short films, and they are a mightily impressive group. The same goes for the “Short Haul” and the “Hoosier Spirit Showcase.” Some of the very best entries in this year’s festival were short films either made locally, by up-and-coming talents, or from universities around the state. I’ll be reviewing the big “Eye-Opening” films on my personal website LoganBushey.com, but make sure to check out the smaller offerings on the schedule as well; some of them are truly outstanding.
If you happen to be downtown grabbing a meal on a patio or sharing a drink with friends, you really should make your way over to Hobnobben at some point. Every other film festival I’ve been to is strictly about showing movies. What makes Hobnobben so unique is that it focuses on building and gathering the community together. It doesn’t hurt to have great films playing over the four days either, but this is a festival for anyone and everyone to come out and enjoy. If last year was any indication, Hobnobben 2017 will be another smashing success and one more step forward for the flourishing arts culture in the city. Don’t miss out.
Individual tickets and festival passes can be purchased online here or in person at the Cinema Center’s box office.
Screenings take place at the Cinema Center, ArtsLab, and Arts United Center from June 15th – June 18th.