The marquee of the 2019 Snake Alley Film Fest in Burlington. This year’s event will be Aug. 5-8. Photo: Produce Iowa
Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs
The Snake Alley Festival of Film will light up the big screen Aug. 5-8 at the historic Burlington Capitol Theater, just a few blocks from the city’s famously winding street. It’s one of more than a dozen Iowa film festivals that are returning to theaters after last year’s intermission.But as you might expect, the self-proclaimed “crookedest film festival in the U.S.” offers some plot twists that set it apart.
For starters, the event focuses on short films and screenplays, so “if you don’t like the film you’re watching, it will be done in a few minutes and a new one will start,” says festival director Tadd Good. “You’ll find something you like in every block.”
He says two “adults only” blocks of films have become especially popular: a general mix on Thursday night and a few cartoons on Saturday morning.
Besides that, the festival features a screenplay competition, where writers get to hear their stories come to life during table readings performed by a cast of local actors. Even the shortest stories can pack a punch.
“Short films get thrown online, where they often sit until they’re forgotten,” Good says. “But film festivals give them a moment to shine on the big screen.”