loresPhoto courtesy of the Capitol Cinema CollectiveWhat would happen if 30 groups of Hartford residents were given single-use camcorders and were told they could shoot whatever they wanted? Capitol Cinema Collective’s experiment in grassroots filmmaking titled: LoResFest ‘06. The final version of the local film edited by Helder Mira and Luis Cotto premiered this week at the Charter Oak Cultural Center.

Before the screening Wednesday members of the Collective explained to the audience how the project evolved. It started at La Paloma Sabanera, where a group of film enthusiasts gathered on a regular basis to screen their favorite films and began to take shape when CVS came out with a 20-minute single-use camcorder.This past May a group of residents were given 24-hours to capture their unique vision of Hartford and return the cameras to the Collective. The one rule everyone had to follow was that their film had to include a street sign. Partially to prove that the film was shot entirely in Hartford and partially to give Mira and Cotto who edited the film a common thread to tie them all together. The low-resolution digital film includes comedy, a touching memorial of a mother, a hilarious matter-of-fact interpretation of one homeowners battle with the Department of Public Works over a tree they won’t let him cut down, the history of cinema houses in Hartford, random man-on-the-street interviews, and much, much more. One filmmaker, who we suspect is Marilyn Rossetti, executive director of H.A.R.T., took the rule about street signs a little more literally than most and went around the city as a one-woman comedy act interpreting a variety of signs.Mira said copies of LoResFest ‘06 will be available for sale starting this Tuesday, Sept. 19 at La Paloma Sabanera, 405 Capitol Ave., Hartford. They will also be available through the Capitol Cinema CollectiveWeb site. Of course, those of you who don’t know what you’re missing will have an opportunity to see LoResFest ‘06 again in November when it’s screened as part of the Hartford International Film Festival.  In fact, proceeds from the sale of the dvd will help support H.I.F.F. the first-ever juried film competition in the Capitol City. Mira said the group is looking for all kinds of innovative films of any length and subject matter on any media for the Hartford International Film Festival that will run Nov. 9 through Nov. 12. Venues for the film festival will include the Charter Oak Cultural Center, Wadsworth Atheneum, Cinestudio, and Art House, one of the older theaters in Hartford that currently operates as an ‘alternative theater’ wink-wink.