Add More Indies To The NATIONAL FILM REGISTRY

I have to admit that I generally like what films get selected for preservation via the National Film Registry.  I don't know if you saw the latest list of what got selected for 2008, but you can look at it here.  They add twenty five titles a year.

But what I bet you didn't know you vote for what is to be added.  Or so their website says.  All you need to do is send your nominations in to:

sleg@loc.gov

You can only nominate 50 films a year.  They have a handy dandy list of suggestions too.  They generally do a pretty great job.  There are a few areas though that need greater emphasis.
Indie films definitely need help.  Without the studio support, they tend to be a little less organized and being held under worst conditions.  The studios aren't going to let a moneymaker fall into disrepair.  A filmmaker who may own their negative but not the house they live in might just be a little different story from the one owned by the mega corp.
I have suggested they add in 2009:
Melvin Van Peebles' SWEET SWEETBACK'S BADASSSS SONG (1971)
Susan Seidelman's SMITHEREENS (1982)
Bette Gordon's VARIETY (1983)
Alex Cox's SID AND NANCY (1986)
Spike Lee's SHE'S GOTTA HAVE IT (1986 )
Whit Stillman's METROPOLITAN (1990)
John McNaughton's HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER (1990)
Todd Hayne's POISON (1991)
Hal Hartley's TRUST (1991)
Gregg Araki's THE LIVING END (1992)
Allison Anders' MI VIDA LOCA (1993)
Ang Lee's THE WEDDING BANQUET (1993)
Tom Noonan's WHAT HAPPENED WAS... (1993)
Terry Zwigoff's CRUMB (1994)
Todd Solondz's HAPPINESS (1998)
Not bad for an initial fifteen.  Granted quite a few serve my self interest, but...  Let me know what I should suggest for the next 35.

Hope For The Future pt. 8: The List #'s 30 -34

30. Some of the major specialized distributors recognize the need to build film education and appreciation into their job description. Focus Features “Film In Focus” website, in partnership with Faber & Faber, demonstrates this impulse beautifully. Independent, Specialized, Art, Foreign, and Truly Free Film all need an audience who acts out of choice not impulse. They need to remain review driven despite the loss of so many critics nationwide. They need to be able to recognize what qualities make a film better or unique. They need to recognize what makes a film art. They need reading that helps their love of cinema grow.

31. The need for digital preservation of indie films and their history is slowly being recognized. Granted this is a little hard to document, but I have had a handful of conversations this year with organizations contemplating both the preservation of specific films and of filmmakers’ archives. In this digital age, preservation is all the more difficult due to the lack of physical copies. Additionally the technology changes, and what was stored on form of drive is not compatible with another. Blogs are born daily and evolve so quickly, we are left wondering how to chart their progress.

32. Communities are renovating their historic town center theaters and turning them into community centers, with capabilities of film and/or digital projection. The great old movie theaters are the shrines to the first century of cinema, and a truly wonderful way to see a film.. Organizations like the League Of Historic American Theaters and the Theatre Historical Society Of America which are dedicated to the restoration and operation of these palaces. Often situated on the old main streets of many American cities, the restoration can often be the cornerstone for the revitalization of the old downtowns. But apart from being great for the local municipalities, for filmmakers these palaces are the antithesis of small screen viewing experience that most seem to think has become the defining indie experience – they are places of worship.

33. Theater owners and managers recognize the need to make the community vested in their success. I have heard of theaters giving back Monday nights to different community groups to program and in doing so building loyal audiences. Michael Moore’s Traverse City theater has 25 cent admissions for childrens’ matinees and Wednesday classics – investing in the youth and education of their community. New and best practices are developing and the theater community is sharing it’s knowledge.