“BEARS” (2007) D- Marc Klasfeld W-Marc Klasfeld
Screened as part of the 2007 OUTFEST film festival
“Bears” is all about the silly beauty contest that takes place at, and I suppose is the real reason for, Bear Rendezvous in San Francisco each February.
The train wreck of an event documented was the 2004 IBR.
I won’t go further into my own opinion of this sort of thing, I’ll just focus on the film itself.
It was awful.
It was badly edited, over long, and horribly, horribly biased in it’s coverage. The director, Marc Klasfeld, obviously wanted to make it a little spicier by inventing his own narrative by molding, through clever editing, the winner of the contest into the villain of the piece.
The film was structured to introduce the contestants individually using interviews and vignettes of their lives. This was done in order to make the audience identify with them and root for their favorite.
Scott Hunter, second from right, was the 2004 IBR winner
The winner of the contest, Scott Hunter of Los Angeles, was never interviewed in the film at all. In fact he was not even seen or mentioned until 1 hour into the film. No interviews or sympathetic vignettes of him. Only a couple of scenes where he was promoting himself during the contest weekend were seen. Using this method of sniper editing, it was made to look like he and , by very obvious and unsubtle connection, Southern California, was crass and rude.
After the screening, I left the theatre and Scott was standing outside by himself smoking a cigarette. He tried to smile, and as I hugged him, I could see he had been crying. He’d not seen the film prior to the screening. Seeing himself up there on the big screen and having the audience boo and hiss him was harrowing for him.
The after party was at the Faultline, and the director, Mark Klasfeld, was there. I approached him. He turned to me smiling, expecting a fawning compliment I suppose. I introduced myself and immediatley said that his film was an awfully edited hack job on my friend Scott and that I very much resented his film and him. He stuttered and sputtered. I went on to point out his obvious biased coverage against Scott and told him that he’d really hurt someone. Regaining his composure, he tried to cover by claiming that they’d somehow lost all the footage of interviews with Scott. (Sorry teacher! My dog ate my homework! honest injun!) I said that that’s bullshit, that Scott had told me himself that he was cut and pasted to look like a fool. Klasfeld said that was untrue and that if Scott himself was there, he’d love to talk to him. I said “Oh yeah? Wait here” I went and grabbed Scott and took him over and the last I saw of them they were walking outside to discuss it. I didn’t read in the paper this morning of a Hollywood director slaying, so I guess Scott controlled himself.
Update: I just read the director’s bio. Wow. I chewed out “one of the finest music video directors working today”
Miss this movie. It’s worse than actually attending one of those beauty contests.