Zoo, a film co-written by The Stranger's associate editor Charles Mudede (pictured), has been accepted to the Directors' Fortnight segment of the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. The film about bestiality, loosely based on an incident in Washington two years ago, opened in New York this week and hits L.A. in May. The Village Voice's Nathan Lee says it "moves the mind to reflect on fundamental questions of culture and psyche: the relation of man to animal, the limits of sexuality, the contours of community." The New York Times also weighs in on Zoo, saying it "wraps its sensationalistic core in a seductive mantle, an approach that appeals to viewers already predisposed to art and the Enlightenment, Sesame Street and all things not Rush Limbaugh."
In an interview with GreenCine, screenwriter and associate editor of The Stranger, Charles Mudede, describes the role the Internet played in bringing together the Enumclaw, Washington beastiality circuit that is the subject of his new documentary, Zoo. He also explains that the viral spread of the story via the Internet garnered national attention and eventually brought about a change in state law. "No one knew that bestiality was legal in this state," says Mudede. "That was the first thing everybody learned. No one was breaking the law." Zoo is currently screening at the Sundance Film Festival.
Associate Editor Charles Mudede, who already has one film to his credit, wrote "Zoo," a feature-length documentary about, ahem, bestiality. Mudede tells the Seattle Times that he became fascinated by the notion that sex with animals was legal in the state of Washington until news reports circulated last year about a man who died from a ruptured colon after having sex with a horse. "Zoo" was bought by THINKFilm and is scheduled to premier at the Sundance Film Festival in January.
"Police Beat," based on the column of the same name by The Stranger Associate Editor Charles Mudede, opened in New York today and has received glowing reviews. Rob Nelson of the Village Voice said that while the film's concept -- vignettes of unusual crimes -- may sound "merely quirky on paper, its look is uniquely ravishing, its effect hypnotic." Manohla Dargis of The New York Times called the movie a "delicately funny tale about everyday surrealism." "Police Beat," which Mudede co-wrote with director Robinson Devor, was also shown at the Sundance Film Festival in 2005.
Robinson Devor's film Police Beat, which chronicles a week in the life of an African-born Seattle bike cop, has been accepted for the 2005 Sundance Film Festival Dramatic Competition, reports the Seattle Times. Devor co-wrote the film with Charles Mudede, whose Police Beat column in The Stranger provided its inspiration. Zimbabwe-born Mudede would visit police precincts, scan the log for interesting stories, interview the cops involved and incorporate their stories into his column. The film was selected into the prestigious competition from more than 700 submissions. (Free registration required.)
Zimbabwe-born Charles Mudede has been writing the unique "Police Beat" for five years. According to The Seattle Times, Mudede "visits police stations once a week, checks the log, and, after talking with the officers involved, incorporates whatever he finds most interesting into his column." Director Robinson Devor says his love for Seattle and Mudede's "fantastic" journalism convinced him to make the low-budget independent film: 'Police Beat' particularly caught my eye because it has a poetic tone to crime that other crime logs in other papers do not."