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interrobang film festival

The Interrobang Film Festival is three days of films and engagements with filmmakers. The audience - whether cinema enthusiasts or curious newcomers - can experience curated screenings from films around the globe.

Presented in concert with the Des Moines Arts Festival, June 25-27, the three-day IMDb-verified festival is part juried competition, part public screening, and part workshop. Submissions are accepted in virtually every category and juried by a panel of peers. The annual festival screens an average of 50 films.

Applications are now closed for the 2021 festival. For additional information, please contact Film Festival Director, Kristian Day.


2021 Selected Films

Connor & Annie

1 of 2
Student Film
Director: Blake Bodlak
Producers: Blake Bodlak & Mark Albersr
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:21:46
Synopsis: ‘Connor & Annie’ follows a pair of old friends as they rediscover their friendship and confront the things that forced them to separate in the first place all over the course of one night.
Showtime: Friday, Student Films Section 1 - 11:00am (Film 1 of 4)

One Stolen Moment

1 of 2
Student Film
Directors: Michael Runde & Ben Friedman
Producers: Ben Burkholder & Pat Hunt
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:17:08
Synopsis: On the weekend of March 13, 2020, four Loras College Athletics programs were ready to cap off what could have been the most successful year in school history. Four Loras seniors were prepared to end their collegiate careers as national champions. We will never know what might have happened.
Showtime: Friday, Student Films Section 1 - 11:00 am (Film 2 of 4)

I Wanna Be A Kid

1 of 2
Student Film
Director and Producer: Sam Nickelson
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:02:31
Synopsis: A collection of children's commercials for the real world, this subversive experimental film shows that when it comes to adulthood, some societal assembly is required.
Showtime: Friday, Student Films Section 1 - 11:00 am (Film 3 of 4)

The Duck and the Dragon

1 of 2
Student Film
Director: Mason Beck
Producers: Chance Whitlatch, Joe Sjostrand, Mason Beck, Levi Gniotczynski
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:09:33
Synopsis: Therapist Vern (Bo Roche) helps his patient Timothy (Kendrick Dell) through a similar childhood trauma he himself faced, and learns to better cope with it himself.
Showtime: Friday, Student Films Section 1 - 11:00 am (Film 4 of 4)

Vinyl Nation

1 of 2
Directors and Producers: Kevin Smokler & Christopher Boone
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 1:32:00
Synopsis: A documentary dig into the resurgence of vinyl records, the diversification of vinyl fans, and the connective power of music during our divided times.
Showtime: Friday, Feature Film 1 - 12:00 pm

Ghost Creek

1 of 2
Director: Benjamin Handler
Producer: Jessica Egli
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:19:03
Synopsis: Ghost Creek is a short film produced by Mission Creek that takes place in a seemingly empty Iowa City, a deserted city, a strange city stripped of its weirdness. The film serves as a reflection of the anxiety, hope, and understanding we achieve when our city loses the art, culture, and community that make it unique. It is a hymn to the value of art, of gathering, and of shared experience.
Showtime: Friday, Short Films Section 1 -1:45 pm (Film 1 of 2)


Hand Me Down

1 of 2
Director: Jon Bartholomew
Producer: Jon Matejcek
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:10:55
Synopsis: A family dramedy about a son's attempt at a quick exit from his parents’ home. We follow his incredible escape from the grip of his father's long goodbye.
Showtime: Friday, Short Films Section 1 - 1:45 pm (Film 2 of 2)

We Want the Airwaves

1 of 2
Director: Scott Ryan
Producer: Charmel Green
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 1:22:00
Synopsis: Filmed over the course of 10 years, "We Want the Airwaves" chronicles the journey of a trio of first time TV makers as they set forth on a daring adventure. The group creates and films an activist focused docuseries ("Manifesto!") in the year 2005, with the goal of launching the first citizen’s platform on network television. Cut from countless hours of behind the scenes footage and interviews with TV & Cultural insiders and outsiders, "We Want the Airwaves" follows the making of "Manifesto!" all while exposing the harsh realities of the ethically challenged unscripted television world.
Showtime: Friday, Feature Film 2 - 2:30 pm



Pretty Ugly Dreams

1 of 2
Director: Severn Lang
Producers: Severn Lang & Sophia Hoffman
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:16:00
Synopsis: Nora Kaufferman would never jeopardize her broadway career, or would she? Her childhood dream comes true how far will she go to keep it?
Showtime: Friday, Short Films Section 2 - 4:00 pm (Film 1 of 2)



Snowy

Directors: Kaitlyn Schwalje & Alex Wolf Lewis
Producers: Rebecca Stern & Justin Levy
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:13:00
Synopsis: Snowy, a four-inch-long pet turtle, has lived an isolated life in the family basement. With help from a team of experts and his caretaker, Uncle Larry, we ask: Can Snowy be happy, and what would it take?
Showtime: Friday, Short Films Section 2 - 4:00 pm (Film 2 of 2)

Reclaim Idaho

1 of 2
Directors and Producers: Laura Wing-Kamoosi & Jim Kamoosi
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 1:01:00
Synopsis: With the lives of 62,000+ uninsured Idahoans at stake, a tiny grassroots team, led by a married couple with a newborn and almost no political experience, hit the road in an unreliable 1977 RV to campaign for the state’s desperately needed Medicaid expansion bill. This is their story.
Showtime: Friday, Feature Film 3 - 4:45 pm


Big Touch

Student Film
Director: Christopher Tenzis
Producer: Gabrielle Cordero
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:03:19
Synopsis: An Afro-Surrealist story about a giant woman and a tiny man who through the power of touch, experience an unexpected transformation.
Showtime: Saturday, Student Films Section 2 - 11:00 am (Film 1 of 4)


Dogwatch

1 of 2
Student Film
Director: Albin Wildner
Producers: Bernhard Wenger, Clara Maria Bacher, Sophie Sy
Country of Origin: Austria
Running Time: 0:33:00
Synopsis: After losing his lifelong position at an industrial corporation, Raphael is forced by the Austrian Unemployment Office to take an underwhelming job as a night-time security guard. He recently moved back in with his bedridden mother, who is also cared for by the dedicated Ukrainian nurse Vera. Through Vera's support, Raphael gradually learns to cope with his new life situation, but a tragic incident breaks his world apart once more.
A warm-hearted narrative about a part of society, whose basis of existence is increasingly threatened.
Showtime: Saturday, Student Films Section 2 - 11:00 am (Film 2 of 4)



Epiales

Student Film
Director and Producer: Anna Panova
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:7:56
Synopsis: 'Epiales' takes the viewer to the journey to the world of nightmares, exploring the experience of a photographer, who suffers from that, and the expert who knows how to control it.
Showtime: Saturday, Student Films Section 2 - 11:00 am (Film 3 of 4)

The Amplitude of Thoughts

Student Film
Director and Producer: Phoebe Mitchem
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:07:46
Synopsis: The stress of the pandemic has exacerbated the struggles of many people dealing with mental health issues, particularly teens. This film discusses what Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, or OCD, feels like for teenagers, touching on how the corona virus has affected their experiences.
Showtime: Saturday, Student Films Section 2 - 11:00 am (Film 4 of 4)



Bone Cage

1 of 2
Director: Taylor Olson
Producer: Melani Wood
Country of Origin: Canada
Running Time: 1:29:00
Synopsis: Jamie (Taylor Olson) works a wood processor, clear-cutting for pulp in small-town Nova Scotia. At the end of each shift, he walks through the destruction he has created looking for injured animals and rescues those he can.
Showtime: Saturday, Feature Film 4 - 12:00 pm

Dualpa

Director and Producer: Mohammad Reza Moradi
Country of Origin: Iran
Running Time: 0:17:48
Synopsis: A young man in the deserts of Iran is looking for a legendary creature who encounters a strange old man. In exchange for the treasure, he agrees to help the old man to find the holy book of their tribe. The difficulty of this path is that the young must be the
Ride of the old man!
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 3 - 1:45 pm (Film 1 of 2)

Wish You Were Here

Director and Producer: Dan Schneidkraut
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:11:44
Synopsis: A story about traveling alone told using footage scavenged from various mobile devices. An exploration of isolation and suicidal thoughts on The United States' Amtrak rail system.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 3 - 1:45 pm (Film 2 of 2)

A Night in the Shelter

1 of 2
Director and Producer: Robert Belinoff
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:17:00
Synopsis: Around 5 PM every evening buses start arriving at a former prison on the high barren mesa 20 miles west of Albuquerque. The Westside Emergency Shelter will sleep 400 homeless men, women and children a night. Buses will take them back to the city in the morning. It is a place of unsuspecting beauty, grace and grit. This film spends 2 days and a night there.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 4 - 2:15 pm (Film 1 of 2)



Bal Des Ardents

1 of 2
Director: Nokomis Leaman Logsdon
Producer: John Pope
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:12:25
Synopsis: Reimagining the famous historical event, Ball of the Burning Men, a cocktail waitress takes a trainee under her wing at a masquerade jazz bar in Chinatown.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 4 - 2:15 pm (Film 2 of 2)

Dwellers

1 of 2
Director: Drew Fortier
Producer: James L. Edwards & David Ellefson
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 1:20:00
Synopsis: While shooting a documentary on the suspicious disappearances within the homeless community, a filmmaker and his crew go missing while uncovering a terrifying and vicious secret below the city's surface.
Showtime: Saturday, Feature Film 5 - 3:00 pm

Field Resistance

1 of 2
Director and Producer: Emily Drummer
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:16:00
Synopsis: Charging scenes of the present with dystopian speculation, Field Resistance blurs the boundaries between documentary filmmaking and science fiction to investigate overlooked environmental devastation in the overlooked state of Iowa. Footage collected from disparate locations—a university herbarium, karst sinkholes inhabited by primordial flora and fauna, a telecommunication tower job site, a decaying grain silo, among others—interlocks to evoke a narrative of present danger and future disaster, of plant expansion and humanity’s retreat. The film rejects the human individual as the focus of narrative cinema, and, instead, adopts the perspective of a symbiotic “implosive whole” in which humans and nonhumans are related in an overlapping, non-total way.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 5 - 4:30 pm (Film 1 of 3)

Physical Barrier, Endless Loop

Director and Producer: John Barnard
Country of Origin: Canada
Running Time: 0:07:00
Synopsis: While walking through the woods, a woman happens upon a seemingly endless golden thread winding its way through the trees. Rather than turning from the obstruction, she decides to follow it, soon discovering alternate versions of herself are also following the thread. Upon realizing she can undergo a metamorphosis to each alternate self by touching the thread, she finds herself caught in an endless cycle of multiple identities.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 5 - 4:30 pm (Film 2 of 3)


Altitude Lake

Director: Jérémy Griffaud
Producer: Vicious Circle
Country of Origin: France
Running Time: 0:06:03
Synopsis: Musicvideo for the song "Altitude Lake" by Slift. An animated film made of handmade drawings and 3D makes us visit the landscapes of an exoplanet.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 5 - 4:30 pm (Film 3 of 3)


Horizon

1 of 2
Director and Producer: Daniele De Muro
Country of Origin: Italy
Running Time: 0:15:00
Synopsis: In the borderlands, crossed by climate refugees looking for safety, men face their primordial nature, in a bleak reality where the law of the strongest rules the world. Hidden in an underground shelter and resigned to his fate, the main character observes the definitive decline of society as it surrender to the evil nature of men, until a special encounter, interpreted as a divine sign of light, turns on his faith and hope for the future of humanity.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 6 - 5:00 pm (Film 1 of 5)


The Sun Still Shines

Director: Rita Blitt
Producer: Rita Blitt Inc.
Country of Origin: Unites States
Running Time: 0:04:14
Synopsis: "The Sun Still Shines" uses a series of line drawings by Rita Blitt made in presence of a percussion performance in the mid-90s. Those drawings, out of thousands of Blitt works, stayed in her mind for 25 years, pulling her to create another project inspired by them. Composer Michael Udow created music influenced by forty of the drawings.
The resulting project became this film, "The Sun Still Shines", which is Blitt's message of hope and resilience in the wake of 2020's world-wide pandemic and ongoing environmental disaster, including the nearby California wildfires.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 6 - 5:00 pm (Film 2 of 5)



Jinxed

Director and Producer: Damián Mastroleo
Country of Origin: Argentina
Running Time: 0:04:00
Synopsis: Sometimes the interpretation of a dream has the simplest of meanings.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 6 - 5:00 pm (Film 3 of 5)



Printed Poison

1 of 2
Director: Loretta Stern
Producers: Loretta Stern & Sarah Kaufman
Country of Origin: Unites States
Running Time: 0:03:39
Synopsis: A mail order bridal service goes terribly haywire in this feminist infused satire.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 6 - 5:00 pm (Film 4 of 5)



Big Yellow Taxi

Director: Matt Mahurin
Producer: Les Stroud
Country of Origin: Canada
Running Time: 0:03:25
Synopsis: On Les Stroud’s release of his transitional roots rock album Bittern Lake, comes one of the album’s biggest surprises: a version of Joni Mitchell’s “Big Yellow Taxi,” that strips away the original’s catchy chorus and sunny acoustic guitars in favor of a bluesy take featuring a rich slide guitar along with Stroud’s own dark and scorching harmonica licks. While the bar is set monumentally high for covering Mitchell’s material, Stroud approaches the level of the original while vastly surpassing the more famous rendition from Counting Crows.
Showtime: Saturday, Short Films Section 6 - 5:00 pm (Film 5 of 5)


Following Josie Molino

1 of 2
Student Film
Director: Matthew Strasburger
Producers: Kare Bortolus, Su Po Wei, Jordan Breedlove, Matthew Strasburger
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:10:00
Synopsis: After leaving a high profile fashion shoot, social media star Josie Molino is bombarded by throngs of groveling paparazzi and raving fans. Particularly affected by this encounter, and increasingly annoyed with the subsequent expectations of social media fame, Josie begins to reflect on whether this insular, highly public life is the life she wants for herself. Like any spontaneous teen, she runs off on her own to discover what else is out there.
Showtime: Sunday, Student Films Section 3 - 11:00 am (Film 1 of 5)

Forgive Me, Father

1 of 2
Student Film
Director and Producer: Jona Schlosser
Country of Origin: Germany
Running Time: 0:21:34
Synopsis: The short film "Forgive Me, Father" transports the viewer to the year 1966. Germany is divided. Not far from East Berlin, 10-year-old Thomas grows up with his grandmother. It soon becomes clear that nothing about his family is normal. As a young boy, he witnesses his mother being committed to a psychiatric institution for unexplained reasons. This event haunts the boy until his present day. Plagued by a strong longing for his father, who had already emigrated to West Germany before the construction of the German Wall, he plans his escape, which should radically change not only his life, but also that of the border guard Johannes Bauer. His inner conflict between moral standards and political conviction causes his world view to collapse. Tossed back and forth between the extremes, the viewer witnesses a true story that makes you think.
Showtime: Sunday, Student Films Section 3 - 11:00 am (Film 2 of 5)


Aloo

1 of 2
Student Film
Director: Priya Kiran
Producer: Danielle Benedict
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:16:09
Synopsis: All Amara Kulkarni wants is to connect with her first generation daughter, Sama, but Sama is strict about keeping her home life and school life separate. When Amara hears about the school’s annual potluck, she takes it as an opportunity to finally join Sama’s world outside of their home. The duo connect while preparing some “party potatoes” but when Amara suggests to bring a traditional Indian dish, any chance of connection is severed and on top of that the dish for the potluck is burned. After speaking to her daughter, Amara realizes that their troubles aren’t so different, and that as a mother it’s her duty to help Sama fit into this world which Amara does not quite understand, thus remaking the American potatoes but adding a slight Indian twist.
Showtime: Sunday, Student Films Section 3 - 11:00 am (Film 3 of 5)




Korridor

Student Film
Directors: Walter Duncan & Marie-Pierre Bonniol
Producer: Marie-Pierre Bonniol
Country of Origin: Germany
Running Time: 0:01:16
Synopsis: Confined in their flat in Berlin, March 2020, a Mother and her 7-year old son collaborate on a playful testament to creativity — a fantastical short made using only a clothes horse, a shiny hula hoop, and a lamp. In the process, they transform their ordinary corridor into a ghostly and experimental place marked by gamelan sounds and transfixing light imagery.
Showtime: Sunday, Student Films Section 3 - 11:00 am (Film 4 of 5)

Troposphere

1 of 2
Student Film
Director and Producer: Mark De Bruin
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:04:58
Synopsis: "Troposphere" showcases the beautiful chaos of the lowest layer of our atmosphere. Filmed over the course of two years and over 4000 miles, it features sunsets, lightning, and supercell thunderstorms. Storm chaser and photographer Mark De Bruin aims to show the world how incredible the most powerful storms in the Midwest can be.
Showtime: Sunday, Student Films Section 3 - 11:00 am (Film 5 of 5)

Home of my Memories

1 of 2
Director: Javier Mendez Lafon
Producer: Andy Rodriguez
Country of Origin: Mexico
Running Time: 0:06:00
Synopsis: A kid find his passion through the experience of his grandfather, all of those teachings come alive in a truly wonderful way.
Showtime: Sunday, Short Films Section 7 - 12:00 pm (Film 1 of 6)

Where I Keep You

Director: Chistine Burright
Producers: Christine Burright and David Weiss (D. M. Weiss Productions)
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:05:55
Synopsis: A couple is stuck in a loop, reliving the same moment over and over again.
Showtime: Sunday, Short Films Section 7 - 12:00 pm (Film 2 of 6)



ATLAS

Director and Producer: Jim Vieille
Country of Origin: France
Running Time: 0:05:43
Synopsis: Dark and poetic, this music video depicts a rite of passage : the liberation of an inhibited personality. First, the night, rough, wild and frenetic, to let out all the accumulated frustrations. Then the next day, appeased, like a rebirth, a return to life.
Showtime: Sunday, Short Films Section 7 - 12:00 pm (Film 3 of 6)



The Magic Hour

1 of 2
Director: Michael LaRocco
Producers: Michael LaRocco & Loretta Stern
Country of Origin: Unites States
Running Time: 0:04:41
Synopsis: A sorcerer casts a spell on a newlywed couple.
Showtime: Sunday, Short Films Section 7 - 12:00 pm (Film 4 of 6)



Strike Team Justice

1 of 2
Directors: Jeremy Dubin & Ryan Lewis
Producer: Ryan Lews
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:02:00
Synopsis: Jimmy spends almost every night in his Palace of Isolation, studying his favorite superheroes. But tonight is different. He may have just cracked the storyline for the next big budget blockbuster. Probably not, but you never know.
Showtime: Sunday, Short Films Section 7 - 12:00 pm (Film 5 of 6)

Deals & Devils

1 of 2
Director and Producer: Screw Loose Films
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:01:47
Synopsis: Deep in the woods a man finds the Devil.
Showtime: Sunday, Short Films Section 7 - 12:00 pm (Film 6 of 6)

23rd Century Giants:The Story of Renaldo &The Loaf

1 of 2
Director: Alex Wroten
Producer: Lindsay Wolfe-Wroten
Country of Origin: Unites States/United Kingdom
Running Time: 1:22:33
Synopsis: A decades-long friendship drives an architect and a biomedical scientist to make the weirdest music you’ve ever heard in your life, and thanks to the Internet, they’re more popular than ever.
Showtime: Sunday, Feature Film 6 - 12:45 pm



Return of the Beast from Outer Space

1 of 2
Director: Max Ward
Producer: Zoey Edwards
Executive Producer: Mustapha Wehbi
Country of Origin: United Kingdom
Running Time: 0:15:00
Synopsis: A disgraced monster movie actor decides to make his magnum opus but needs a victim to do it.
Showtime: Sunday, Short Films Section 8 - 2:15 pm (Film 1 of 3)

Motorway Macabre

1 of 2
Director: Matt Eckholm
Producers: Amber Steimer & Christian Calabrese
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:08:45
Synopsis: Above an abandoned raceway in the desert, Phaedra and Willow watch as a hotshot driver challenges a pack of phantom racers.
Showtime: Sunday, Short Films Section 8 - 2:15 pm (Film 2 of 3)

Quiet on Set

1 of 2
Director: Jeanette L. Buck
Producer: Rani Deighe Crowe
Country of Origin: United States
Running Time: 0:07:46
Synopsis: An actress assaulted on a film set during the filming of a sex scene, must choose whether to pursue accusations or complete the film that could start her career.
Showtime: Sunday, Short Films Section 8 - 2:15 pm (Film 3 of 3)


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