Students show off their movies at Reality Bytes Film Festival


By Kevin Bartelt

Students from around the world showed their films in Cole Hall at the 12th annual Reality Bytes Film Festival on Thursday.

Collectively, hundreds of people attend the three-day independent student film festival each year. Not only did the viewers learn about fictional films, documentaries and animated films, but they also had a chance to win prizes like coupons for free cookies from Potbelly’s Sandwich Shop and a free pizza from Toppers in Monday and Wednesday’s raffle.

“Sex and Spaghetti,” directed by Nicole Favale was one of the best films as voted by students. Angela Harding (Ann Gulian), a woman who suffers from an increasingly dull relationship with her husband of 27 years, is fed up. Harding makes a life-changing decision that differs from her regular Wednesday routine of sex and spaghetti. Gulian’s portrayal of Harding is funny. I highly recommend checking out the trailer, as Angela makes a video showing us how to make homemade spaghetti sauce but cannot stop bringing up her own marriage.

Karen Glienke directed “88 Miles to Moscow,” a comedic story about a touchy situation. 15-year-old Niki (Brynn Samms) reflects on her train ride with her overly curious mother and attempts to endure the ride with her drunken ex-father. After attempting a smoke break between stops, Niki misses the train and befriends a Russian teen, Stas (Roman Marshanski). This was my favorite film due to the hilarious conversation between Niki and her mother.

“’88 Miles to Moscow’ was really funny at some points and reminded me of my own family in the way they talked,” said senior communications major Georgia Hionis.

Hionis mentions a great point—the relatable mother-daughter relationship brought most of the humor to the film.

This festival also broke gender stereotypes of moviemakers.

“The best film of each night were both made by women filmmakers,” said Randy Casperson, assistant professor of media studies.

In addition to the 15 short films, television, film producer and alumnus Robert Katz shared stories about his success in show business. Katz told a funny story reflecting on the beginning of his career. Several years ago, Katz lied in an interview. Confused about the story, the interviewer called the references he gave, not knowing they were Katz’s best friends. Needless to say, his friends said Katz was amazing and he got the job.

Reality Bytes had a great turnout last week. The diverse films, knowledgeable guest speaker and delicious raffle prizes are all great reasons why students should attend this free festival again next year.