Elegant, thought-provoking and darkly comic, Pow Wow documents a stunning range of Coachella Valley characters in age, gender, ethnicity and class—country clubbers, service workers, lovers, rivals, gods, ghosts, retired Hollywood, Native Americans, Hispanics, whites, the fleeting and the eternal, the deep and the dead. A “Desert Gothic” set in Palm Springs, California, “Pow Wow” chronicles a type of American joy that is slowly dying out.
Unlike other documentaries, which use literal recreations, Pow Wow uses modern day desert characters to echo and illuminate an infamous 1908 desert manhunt for Willie Boy, a native American youth who outran a mounted posse on foot across 500 miles of desert. Like Willie Boy, the film’s present-day characters have, in many ways, utilized the desert to survive and run free.
Characters include a homicide detective, an Austrian socialite, a prison pastor, an insurance salesman, a theater director, a legendary comic, trust funders, teenage lovers, members of the Native American community and a deceased art dealer. An experiment in storytelling as well as a comparative study of past and present desert existence, Pow Wow sheds light on the unique bond between the insiders and the outsiders of the Coachella Valley.
This money will go toward funding the final week of shooting, as well as editing. Costs include, but are not limited to, a camera package and lenses, a sound package, transcriptions, insurance, travel costs, food and gas. We need to raise this money now in order to finish shooting and editing, as we have already shot four weeks of footage and have begun to assemble an edit. We have something unusual and compelling; any pledge or donation will help us realize our project to completion.
And for that, we thank you so much.
Risks and challenges
We still need to shoot for one more week in Palm Springs. Any shoot has its challenges, but this kind of film-making presents a special challenge in that we are working on a real shoestring budget and can't throw money at problems. The positive here is that all the money goes up on the screen. The crew has literally slept on the floor during weeks of shooting. Additionally, all the principals, i.e., the director, the director of photography, the co-writer and the producer, live in different cities and just collecting everyone within certain dates is a real challenge.
There is also a challenge in the final assembly of the film. We are asking favors for editing bays, editors, even for people helping to shoot B-roll.
Both the director and the producer have proven track records of getting movies made, and bringing them to market, which is a definite plus. There will be a challenge in getting the film into festivals and selling the film and all this takes time and money, but having a proven track record and contacts definitely helps.
If you want to contribute to unique, compelling, independent and original film-making being brought to the public, then please back us. Your money will be well spent.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)