21st SF IndieFest, Week One

The festival returns, now with Sam Elliott and other things that are not Sam Elliott.

Last year’s anniversary SF IndieFest was a journey through the festival’s 20-year past. To celebrate finally reaching legal drinking age, this year’s festival promises to dive into topics including — but not limited to — relationship drama, self-destructive young people, underground abortion assistants, dolls acting badly, Islamophobia, frats acting badly, AI on trial, addiction, cults, obsession, and dystopia. So: something for everyone! Certainly everyone can appreciate the opening night film at the Roxie, Robert Krzykowski’s geezer-sploitation flick The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot. National treasure Sam Elliott stars as the killer in question, a man who wants to put his murderin’ days behind him but gets called onto one last job.

An argument has been made that single-take films are a gimmick, but just because something is gimmicky doesn’t mean it can’t be compelling as Christopher Greenslate’s one-shot Saviors, about a woman who infiltrates a white-supremacist group. Because bro culture and local film culture are still (and possibly forever) intertwined, this year IndieFest’s also brings the ninth “Super Bowl: Men in Tights” party, just the title of which is making you laugh because men don’t wear tights! See what a hilarious juxtaposition that is? Even (or maybe especially) in progressive San Francisco, the implication of distasteful femininity will never not be comedy gold.

Opens Thursday at the Roxie Theater and the Victoria Theater.

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