Films in Competition 7

  • Somewhere Higher
  • Cactus Touch
  • Rough Cut Botanical
  • In Passing
  • Hysterisis
  • Pyrotenics
  • Steam XII
  • Koel Bird

No Longer Available


Main Theater - Michigan Theater Fri, Mar 24, 2023 7:30 PM



Wana Brands



Michigan Psychoanalytic Society



Cynthia Nicely

Somewhere Higher 

Mohammad Gorjestani

Detroit, MI | 2022 | 24 | DCP

Recreational use of cannabis has been legal in Michigan since 2018—but consumers know the activity is still stigmatized. In this vibrant anthology, cannabis users tell us the other side of the story. They tell us that the perspective and clarity offered by cannabis far outweigh the vague, supposed risks. Whether they’re a poet seeking inspiration, a boxer recovering after a fight, or a young Muslim seeking a closer relationship to God—they each tell us how herb has helped many Michiganders process grief, be more creative, and engage more completely with their loved ones.

Cactus Touch 

Michael Langan

Seattle, WA | 2022 | 2 | DCP

A prickly sensory playground tempts one daring young finger to embark on a spiritual journey. I want to touch it. Should we touch it? Yes! NO. Nononono. YESSSSSSSS...

rough cut botanical 

Wendy Kirkup

Glasgow, UK | 2022 | 8 | Digital File

North American Premiere

rough cut botanical interweaves multiple images of plant and animal life while a voice speaks to the materiality of its subject matter and to film itself. Inspired by audio description, it playfully explores how two people may speak their space together. Shot on 16mm, the film uses a matte box, an old cinematic technique to create multiple exposures.

In Passing 

Anna Johnson

Minneapolis, MN | 2022 | 9 | Digital File

World Premiere 

Two people wander through uncanny environments within a strange yellow house. Guided by dream logic, they move towards a point of transformation.


Robert Seidel

Berlin, Germany | 2021 | 6 | DCP
North American Premiere

Hysteresis intimately weaves a transformative fabric between Robert Seidels’s projections of abstract drawings and queer performer Tsuki’s vigorous choreography. Using machine learning to mediate these lagged re-presentations, the film intentionally corrupts the AI’s strategies to unveil a frenetic, delicate, flamboyant visual language of the hysteria and hysteresis in this historical moment.


Onyou Oh

Valencia, CA / Jeju, South Korea / Puerto Princesa, Philippines | 2021 | 12 | DCP

When the theater puts up fireworks by itself,  an imaginary cinema rises from a woman’s eyes as a vision.

The Stream XII-II 

Hiroya Sakurai

Uji, Japan | 2022 | 5 | Digital File

North American Premiere

In the artificial environment of the reed fields, wind and fire—elements of nature—follow the rules of the artificial. As a result, nature is made abstract, giving rise to a new form of beauty distinct from the natural state. For the twelfth film in the series The Stream, I did not limit the stream to liquids, but extended it to include the air. I shot wind, flames, smoke, and clouds as motifs representing the air.

Conversations With A Koel Bird 

Yuan Li Elizabeth Xu

Singapore / Providence, RI | 2022 | 7 | Digital File

North American Premiere
I am in Providence, RI. My brother is in Singapore. We talk about the koel bird.