Texas Snow (2008) – By Mike Rechtien

 I walked up to the ticket window at the Tivoli in St. Louis, proud that I had finally gotten out to support local filmmakers at the St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase.  The sign read "Streetballers Sold Out."  That was the 7:00 movie but I was there in time for the 5:00.  "One ticket please," I asked the kind woman, paid my money and sauntered in.  "Texas Snow" made it’s debut, after a couple of uninspiring shorts, to a not-so-packed house.  Too bad for those who missed it, because I am here to say that I’d pay to see it again in a heartbeat.

The pacing, the music (by Keegan Dewitt), the acting… by the time the film ended I was seriously in awe.  Considering all the crap that I have subjugated myself to in recent years (big budget Hollywood garbage) I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.  The film wasn’t flawless, but I found myself quite caught up in the actors and their storyline.  It was practically impossible to keep my eyes off Julia Rust.  I’m sure she is quite attractive anyway, but she has that "magic" that translates so well to film.  John Gregory Willard was a formidable counterpart and their relationship was powerful, moving and utterly believable.

The writer and director, Aaron Coffman, confessed afterwards that he was forced to stick to his $2000 budget because that’s all American Express would lend him when he applied for a new card.  So, of course, he rented a camera and everyone worked for free.  The film was shot beautifully by Keith Huffmeier in what seemed (to me) to be all natural light.  There were minor sound issues but they were rare.  I was also a bit confused about the relationships in the beginning of the film, but all that melted away as the story progressed.  I felt like I was watching Love Story or Sex, Lies and Videotape for the first time.  Kudos to Aaron Coffman and his wonderful cast and crew.

For more, and a short clip from the movie, go to http://www.aaroncoffman.com/texassnow.