Better Living Through Cinematography
See the Best of the New Urbanism Film Festival in Santa Monica
Walking to work, biking to shop for a house and moving seniors into urban downtowns — these are just some of the ideas at the core of films about New Urbanism, the movement to make built environments more walk-able, bike-friendly and dense.
The newly renovated Laemmle’s Monica Film Center (formerly the Monica Fourplex) in Santa Monica is screening a selection of the best films from the Los Angeles-based, nationwide New Urbanism Film Festival on Wednesday.
Featured short films include “I’d Rather Stay” (Best of the Fest), a documentary that explores the joys and challenges of growing old at home through the eyes of five older adults; “Arlington Passages: Natalie” (Best Bicycle Film), about a real estate agent who leads prospective homeowners on neighborhood bicycle tours; and “The Cerebral City” (Best Urban Design Film), about an Australian woman’s rediscovery of Melbourne’s public spaces.
Honorable mentions include: “Streetploitation,” an expose about how urban planners designed cities for cars, and “Road to School,” a comedic short that parodies video games to show the challenges of walking to school.
In true New Urbanist fashion, attendees are invited to park their bikes near the venue or take Metro’s 720 or 733 Rapid line buses to the theater.
Santa Monica City Manager Rick Cole, honored in 2014 by the Congress of New Urbanism for advancing the principles and practice of the philosophy, is speaking during the event.
— Christina Campodonico
The Best of the New Urbanism Film Festival begins at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 24, at Laemmle’s Monica Film Center, 1332 Second St., Santa Monica. Tickets become available on Tuesday at laemmle.com. For more information, visit newurbanismfilmfestival.com/santa-monica/.