Bethesda Urban Partnership features local filmmakers in film festival


BETHESDA, Md. (WDVM) – The Bethesda Film Festival has begun, showcasing several documentaries for people to view virtually.

The Bethesda Urban Partnership hosts the festival, featuring 7 documentaries from filmmakers in the DMV area.

This is the 9th year of the festival and the second virtual year.

Brenna O’Malley with the Partnership says they received almost 100 film submissions, with the selected documentaries featuring a variety of stories – including politics, the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, and untold stories of the “Squeegee Boys” of Baltimore.

“That is the fun part about documentary is that in one evening, we can show an audience five, or six, or seven different films,” O’Malley said. “And they can walk away looking at them in a different way that they weren’t before.”

Filmmaker Isabelle Carbonell is originally from Bethesda.

Her documentary, “A Mirror of the Earth,” is on a small town in Spain and how decades of nearby mining have affected its residents and the environment. She says her filmmaking methods look to make complex topics more accessible.

“It’s about attuning ourselves and how can we use different tools and techniques and methods, and explanations to attune ourselves to something that’s really difficult to understand or to see or to hear,” Carbonell said.

Interested community members can also attend a virtual Q&A with the filmmakers on April 16.

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