Three feature-length films and a handful of shorts from a Missouri filmmaker highlight the Rated SGF Film Festival lineup in 2020.
Rated SGF, March 27-28, is presented by Simmons Bank and Hotel Vandivort. The festival is managed by the Downtown Springfield Association and the Film & Media Association of Springfield (a fiscal program of the SRAC).
The full schedule for the festival will be announced soon. Each screening includes live music and a Q&A with a special guest from each film.
Short films by Morgan Cooper
Morgan Cooper is a rising star. Raised in Kansas City, Cooper made a splash with "Bel-Air," a four-minute. The four-minute, faux trailer reimagines Will Smith's '80s sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air as a drama. Five months later "U Shoot Videos?" was released online and received widespread acclaim. The 40-minute, semi-autobiographical film tells the story of a young African-American rap-video director trying to move into the world of big-money videos. Rated SGF will also screen Cooper's "State of America."
"Amazing Grace" (2018) 87 minutes
Iconic singer-songwriter Aretha Franklin recorded her gospel album "Amazing Grace" live at the New Temple Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles in 1972. This documentary film captured the experience. Franklin is accompanied by the Southern California Community Choir, directed by Alexander Hamilton, as well as James Cleveland on piano, Bernard Purdie on drums and Chuck Rainey on bass guitar.
"Minding the Gap" (2018) 93 minutes
This Oscar-nominated documentary is directed by Bing Liu. It chronicles the lives and friendships of three young men growing up in Rockford, Illinois, united by their love of skateboarding. "Minding the Gap" won the U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Filmmaking at the Sundance Film Festival.
"Thunder Road" (2018) 92 minutes
Jim Cummings directed, wrote and stars in this American comedy-drama, based on his 2016 short film of the same name. It's the story of a police officer facing a personal meltdown following a divorce and the death of his mother. "Thunder Road" began production with a Kickstarter campaign and won the Grand Jury Award at the 2018 SXSW Film Festival.
Passes on sale now
The full schedule for Rated SGF will be announced at a later date. Weekend passes and individual screening passes are now on sale through Eventbrite. Weekend passes include access to every Rated SGF event, including all film screenings, Q&As and access to the After Party at Hotel Vandivort.
For more information, visit RatedSGF.com.