We Got The Mojo At Mr. Moto’s

Mr Motos after party 2

The after party following the first day’s blocks of films was an incredible blast. We went to a cool little pub about a block from the river called Mr. Moto’s. They put out a humungous variety of pizzas for the film fest crowd and the libations flowed freely.

If you’ve never been around a group of film makers and their entourages after they’ve been “properly lubed,” you just haven’t lived. Live music interspersed with witty (and sometimes not-so-witty) repartee made for an incredible evening. The “after” after party crowd did not disappoint. (From what I hear of course…I was a good boy─sorta.)

We’ve just begun the second day with a delicious brunch at The Drake on the river. And now the films are rolling again.

If you have any doubts about this little town on the river rocks, consider this. Following the Snake Alley Festival of Film, they’ll launch “Steamboat Days,” a music festival featuring a variety of music genres. One of the headliners this year is Kid Rock. They anticipate crowds of 10,000 or more.

Last night there was also a gallery hop for people who are into art. There was live music, food and wine. As I said a few posts back, this town is becoming a Midwest version of Key West.

If you missed out, plan to make it next year. Your intrepid blogger will be here suffering through another day of friendly folks, fabulous films, and rocking parties.

Beemer’s, Boxcars, Bikes, and Boats

When you hear someone mention a film festival in Iowa, what’s the first thing to pop into your head? Miles of farmland interspersed with boring little towns and not much to do?
Well wrap your wrinkled little brain around this. Burlington, Iowa, home of The Snake Alley Festival of Film is anything but boring. In fact, you can’t see or do everything there is to see and do in the three or four days you’re here. This artsy-cool (and becoming cooler by the day) little town sits on the banks of the mighty Mississippi and extends to high bluffs overlooking the river.
Put this image in your mind. You’ve just left a 1920’s restored theater having seen great films from some of the more talented film-makers on the planet. As you sit in your car waiting for a line of boxcars to pass, it almost feels like you’ve gone back in time. Then you notice the new Beemer in the next lane. Beside him is a group of cyclists who are competing in a criterium. In your rear-view mirror there’s a Rolls Royce and between the boxcars you spot an old Mississippi paddle-wheeler putting into the town dock.
Off to your left you see a hip-looking crowd entering Mr. Moto’s Public House. By all appearances, they’re having a great time.
As the last of your preconceived notions falls away, you realize you’re having the time of your life. You make a mental note to attend The Snake Alley Festival of Film again next year and many years after that. And you’re very glad you decided to come.