The Overnighters, Jesse Moss' much lauded film at Sundance, screened Friday at Guild Hall, a finale for the Hamptons International Film Festival Summerdocs series. Thinking he was following the story of the many men who descended on North Dakota looking for work in the fracking boom there, Jesse Moss found a compelling central character, Pastor Jay Reinke, who took many of these migrants into his Lutheran church, much to the horror of the community. With a surprising reveal, the documentary demonstrates the power of non-fiction filmmaking to touch un-scriptable hidden truths. With the industry's large machinery cutting into the once spectacular landscape as backdrop, the film could have focused on the all too tragic toll of our country's dependence on oil, but instead it homes in on grim lives that are far removed from the riches of East Hampton, where a lavish pre-screening party at Mary Jane and Charles Brock's residence featured the magician Mark Mitton who made Hilaria Baldwin's mega carat diamond ring morph into one larger.
In an ideal bit of programming, The Overnighters would screen in a double bill with Pump, a film that addresses America's insistence upon autos fueled with oil when the film offers an obvious solution in cars either entirely or partially run by electricity or other solutions. Pump had a Southampton world premiere this week. No one missed the irony of a tony crowd pulling up to the estate of Katharina Otto and Nathan Bernstein for a poolside supper in gas driven vehicles. Telling the history of the American obsession with cars, Pump relates a little known story about Rockefeller, who stemmed the development of alcohol-fueled automobiles by successfully pushing for Prohibition.
While it would be hard to say what was fueling the red truck transporting Michael Heizer's 340-ton boulder from its quarry in Riverside County, California to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, there's no question that the journey caused quite a sensation. Larry Gagosian hosted a screening of Levitated Mass: The Story of Michael Heizer's Monolithic Sculpture at Guild Hall last week attended by many art world East Enders; directed by Doug Pray and produced by Jamie Patricoff, the film of this rock's awe-inducing travels to its special installation at the museum provides its own jaw-dropping pleasures, not the least of which is learning more about a famously reclusive artist fascinated by geology and negative space.
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