Festival features student film

Alexa Addleman

This Saturday, junior Alex Herz was waiting outside the Lark Theater along with many spectators lined up to see a film.

However, he wasn’t there to watch just any movie. His two minute piece Just Like You was premiering in just a few minutes. Comprised of a combination of home videos featuring his younger brother Griffin, the video was selected to be in the Mill Valley Film Festival from a pool of around 150 youth applicants.

Beginning Oct. 3 and ending on the 13th, films part of this year’s Mill Valley Film Festival were shown at many local movie theaters, including the Lark.

JustLikeYou_05
Griffin Herz, Alex Herz’s little brother, plays the guitar in Alex’s short student film Just Like You.

To enter the festival, Herz said he used a website called withoutabox.com, which helps filmmakers submit their films to many festivals at a time.

“It’s kind of like a Common App for film,” Herz said.

He made the film while at the California State Summer School for the Arts, an intensive summer program for high school students interested in the arts, including film. According to Herz, this was the first film he did not produce independently.

Herz said that from start to finish, it took about two weeks to complete the film, and editing it was especially challenging.

“At first when I showed my friends, they didn’t really understand it,” Herz said. “I had to re-edit it so it would make sense.”

Herz also showed a short film last year at the 35th Mill Valley Film Festival, and he is going to submit another for the festival next year. He plans to enter Tree of Gold, a period piece set in the 1930s. Shot in Nicasio with the help of Redwood alumnus Ben Suliteanu, the film stars an eleven-year-old girl and boy.

According to Herz, he has access to top-notch actors through his sister’s acting coach, who plays a teacher in Tree of Gold.