More from Slamdance, the film festival “By Filmmakers, For Filmmakers” currently taking place in Park City, Utah, down the street from the more well known Sundance Film Festival.
On September 11, 2015, Iraq War vet Jon Hancock, set out from his home in Maryland to walk to Camp Pendleton in California. But it was not going to be a straight route. He wanted to stop along the way to visit with some of the Marines he served with, and with some of the gold star families of his fallen comrades. Bastard’s Road is a brief overview of that fifteen month journey. For Hancock this is an important mission—both for himself and for his “brothers” and their families. All have issues growing out of their war time experiences. All have issues with PTSD (which is talked about) and some with moral injury (which is not mentioned). It is about the bonds that these men forged in battle. And it is about the pain they brought home. It is about finding ways to process the things they have seen and done. It is also, for Hancock, about forgiving himself for some of the things he has done in his life.
In Shoot to Marry, filmmaker Steve Markle is 42 years old and unmarried. As he puts it, “I should be divorced by now.” After a breakup with a longtime girlfriend (and for a day, fiancée), he’s trying to find someone to marry. He decides he’ll start finding interesting women (in various ways) and asking them to be in a documentary he’s making. He interviewed fifty women (including his 3rd grade crush, a pilot, a firefighter, a dominatrix, a sex club owner, a hat designer, and more) asking them about what they might want, and what he should be doing. Yes, there are some ethical issues with this, and he ponders them. But he also manages to bring to the screen a number of women with interesting lives and perspectives. He also manages to learn a bit about himself. But will he find his soulmate?