By Andrew Schneider & NoCoast Artists
Chaos is a part of life. In Northern Colorado it expresses itself as uncontrollable wildfires, turbulent regional politics and cultural dichotomy. But even in these tumultuous times we need to take pride in our commonalities and through it, our vision for what we can become.
Fort Collins is home to many originals. I believe, like many other places, that we reinvented the definition of beer, bikes, local, sustainability, and rather than shunning these values as “chic” and “trendy” I think these are worthwhile to hold onto. The core beliefs that Fort Collins encompasses, although often looked upon as lofty and pretentious in a world where convenience overshadows longevity, are those of growth and the capacity to endure. Whether you believe the world is in danger due to global warming, economic crisis or general social entropy, Fort Collins is actively working towards preserving – and bettering herself by any means possible. After all, self-preservation doesn’t have to stop at renewable resources. Why can’t we redefine how we get everything, including entertainment?
From the advent of filmmaking until roughly 1910, movies were made by amateurs. People who were interested in moving pictures stood up and made them for the fun of it all. It was a new form of art that begged to be explored. Then, movie-making became a business, and for a long time the technology and means to make quality films on your own was beyond the reach of most people. Only in the last decade or so has the landscape of filmmaking changed. More and more the power that moving pictures possess is shifting back into the hands of the people.
NoCoast Artists are those people: a collection of creative professionals who decided that we go out of our way for local foods, local beers, local art. A dollar spent for local goods in Fort Collins is a dollar likely to stay in Fort Collins. Why wouldn’t people want to see a local movie in the same way they strive to live the rest of their lives locally? There’s a pervasive idea that movies are only made in places like LA, New York or Toronto, but a central idea to NoCoast is that quality movies can be made anywhere. You don’t need millions of dollars, you don’t need Disney or Michael Bay, you don’t need Sundance or Cannes, all you need are a group of dedicated people who share a vision. Fort Collins is a dormant hotbed of filmmaking that is just waiting for a match, and NoCoast is striking that match this summer when they put Fort Collins on the big screen in the feature-length comedy, Whensday: The story of Joe Panda and Wildrose, seen through the eyes of the Braughman Brothers, as told by Abe Benjamin.
Documentarian Abe Benjamin stumbles across an old casette tape in a thrift store that leads him to investigate the mysterious origin of a bamboo bike and the odd little girl who accompanies it on its journey through time. Unbeknownst to Abe, the Braughman Brothers Security Team are on the hunt for the same bike at the request of their billionaire boss and best friend, Joe Panda. Chaos ensues. Imagery of the Choice City abounds.
Whensday gets the full Fort Collins treatment, with an Old Town bike-in block party premiere outside Lyric Cinema Café on August 9. Live music will play as the sun sets from bands featured in the movie’s soundtrack like Michael Kirkpatrick, Fierce Bad Rabbit, Mama Lenny & The Remedy and members of The Aquatic Lights. The movie continues to play at Lyric Cinema Café throughout the month of August and will make the rounds to independent cinemas in communities across Colorado.