Push It Forward

Actor Elizabeth Ho approaches the turning point in the film, <i>Kilo</i>.
Actor Elizabeth Ho approaches the turning point in the film, Kilo.

Last night I had the pleasure of seeing for the first time the film Kilo, which I was fortunate to be involved in when it was in production in August of last year. Kilo debuted in December at the Mammoth Film Festival, but I was unable to make the trip. So I was happy to hear that a private showing was scheduled at the Dolby Labs screening room, in itself a remarkable facility on Potrero Ave. in San Francisco. It was great to see so many people I’d met on set but whom I’ve not seen since then, as well as family and friends in common of the writing/directing duo who’d invited me to be involved, Kiel Murray and Phil Lorin. I was extremely pleased for my friends as I sat in the elegant screening room, watching their nearly-40-minute film unfold.

You know how some indie films have a rough edge to them, either on purpose as a stylistic choice or as a result of the fact that they are far from Hollywood and on a shoe string budget? Kilo has none of that: it’s as polished and as beautiful a production as we’re used to seeing from multimillion dollar studio films. It’s still amazing to me that a small group of people can get together with borrowed or donated equipment, a tight schedule and tighter budget, and add to that paucity of materials such a wealth of talent and skill you’d never tell by looking that such compromises of time and expense were required.

It was fascinating to watch the scenes I’d observed in production in their places within the context of the story, not only to see just how jumbled up the shooting order was, but also to see how what had been to me stand alone snippets fit so tightly together as a whole. (I also had a renewed ache of regret for the days I was not able to visit the set and make photographs as I watched scenes in the film that were utterly new to me. How I wish I’d been able to be there every day!) Being surrounded be some of the actors and friends of the production who had parts in the movie added to the enjoyment–each time someone sitting by me recognized him or herself on screen and uttered a little squeek of delight, the sense of Kilo being a community project only increased. Congratulations to everyone who contributed their time and abilities: Kilo is truly something to be proud of.

I encourage you to go see the film, which will show to the public at the Tiburon International Film Festival in March, 2010.