Bodine and Alexis Boling had their first date at Cinema Village in 2014. Next week, they’ll head back there for the theatrical release of their award winning “casual science-fiction film” Movement + Location. The Bed-Stuy filmmakers shot the film in Brooklyn and Manhattan over the course of 18 chilly winter days, and the hustling paid off: The film picked up awards for Best Screenplay and Best Original Score and won the Audience Award at the Brooklyn Film Festival last year.
Movement + Location is written by Bodine (who also plays Kim) and directed by Alexis, and it was largely filmed in Prospect Park and the Lower East Side with some scenes taking place in the Boling’s own apartment. “New York in the winter is so brutal, but it kind of gave an energy to it, and the light in the winter is beautiful,” Alexis Boling said. It tells the story of an immigrant from 400 years in the future who left her life behind to travel to an unknown time and place in the past.
The future world Kim is escaping is presumably so bad that people are willing to pay to relocate to a society they know next to nothing about, and while her circumstances are certainly more extreme, it’s not much of a stretch to link her experience to that of modern day immigrants all over the world. “They’re having to give up everything because starting over somewhere new is easier, which I think is a scary thing,” Bodine Boling said.
At its core the film isn’t really about time travel — that’s more just the setup for the modern-day drama that unfolds once Kim lands in Brooklyn. The filmmakers leave most of the details about the future to the viewer’s imagination, but clues can be found in this “promotional video” for the time traveling service.
When we first see Kim, she’s starting to get her life together; she has a job helping the homeless, an apartment with a roommate, and is falling in love. But when she meets a homeless teen (Catherine Missal) in the park and realizes she, too, is from the future, Kim’s new life is in danger of suddenly falling apart. There are no special effects – in fact, the most sci-fi thing about the film may be Dan Tepfer’s musical score, as Tepfer explains more in this video.
The project was funded with the help of Seed & Spark – in fact, Movement + Location was the first movie crowd-funded using the site to premiere at a festival. “It’s a really wonderful platform for independent filmmakers,” said Alexis Boling, adding that it’s a great time to be working in the “wild west” of independent filmmaking. Bodine Boling has been diligently updating the film’s blog throughout the entire process. “We want to share our experiences with other independent filmmakers so they can learn from our mistakes,” Alexis Boling said.
The film will hit iTunes and Verizon FiOS On Demand September 22 and is available for pre-order on iTunes now, but we would encourage you to see it the old-fashioned way. The filmmakers will be hosting Q&As with different special guests at every 7:05 p.m. showing. The New York City transplants (she hails from Maryland, he from Georgia) have both been living in Brooklyn for over a decade and said they have no plans to relocate to a sunnier, more star-studded locale any time soon. “The film is kind of a love letter to Brooklyn, too,” said Alexis. “We love living here. It was a real dream to film this in the city.”
The Bolings are already at work on their next feature film, also in the “casual science-fiction” vein and set in New York City with a strong female protagonist. The screenplay, written by Bodine, is about parallel universes, they said, but this time Bodine will take a break from acting to direct while Alexis will fulfill the roles of producer and director of photography. They plan to announce more about the film this fall and start shooting next year.
Movement + Location, Sept. 18 – 24 at Cinema Village, 22 East 12th Street (Greenwich Village). Order through Eventbrite and enter promo code “bedbow” to receive $4 off your ticket.