Kinfolk Tales poster

The Rome International Film Festival kicked off yesterday and brings a variety of new and intriguing films to downtown Rome.

Although films represent a wide range of subject matter, as well as city or country of origin, there’s one that should bring a smile to festivalgoers faces, especially when they learn it’s a local film about a local artist.

Jeremy Smith is a woodcarver who started out carving the most whimsical and intricate patterns and faces into pumpkins. “Kinfolk Tales: Serving Pumpkins” is a 14-minute short about a naive pumpkin who learns the truth about how humans treat pumpkins and sets out to rescue his friends.”

“If you carve a face into a pumpkin and give it vine arms and move it around you can make it DO things,” said local artist Jeremy Smith. “This 12 minute short started out by just wanting to show a pumpkin riding a bicycle and it ended up with bicycles and machine guns and the pumpkin matrix and the pumpkin revolution.”

‘Kinfolk Tales: Serving Pumpkins tells the story of Jack, a naive pumpkin who loves his life at The Patch until he discovers the awful truth about how humans actually treat pumpkins. Then he sets out to rescue his friends from the evil megacorp Plump ‘N Sassy Pumpkin Factory, starting the pumpkin revolution.

“It’s a silly kids movie meant to be watched around Halloween,” Smith said. “It’s not scary, but it was a lot of fun to plan and shoot. When it got selected for the Rome International Film Festival I was shouting with joy, as in literally screaming ‘WooHoo!’ They get a lot of entries from people who went to film school and have budgets and connections, so it was a big deal to me that they chose our practical effects-laden project.

“Kinfolk Tales: Serving Pumpkins” will be screened Friday, Nov. 8 at 4:30 p.m. at the DeSoto Theatre and again on Sunday, Nov. 10 starting at 5:30 p.m. at the DeSoto Theatre.

For a full festival lineup, film descriptions and schedules, or to purchase tickets, visit online at

Feature Film lineup

Today - The award winning film ‘Sgt. Stubby (An American Hero)’ is a FREE show plus Ice Cream Social at 7:30 p.m. at Courtyard by Marriott with children & pets welcome.

Friday Nov. 8 - The award winning film ‘Ruben Blades Is Not My Name’ at 7 p.m. at the Rome City Auditorium followed by the RIFF VIP Salsa Party at The Brewhouse (Includes Dinner, Drink and Live 9 Piece Orchestra) at 9 p.m.

Saturday, Nov. 9 - Actor Max Martini appears at RIFF for his latest film ‘Sgt. Will Garner.’ Rome City Auditorium 7 p.m.

Sunday, Nov. 10 - Actress Danielle Deadwyler introduces her latest film ‘Reckoning’ and guests meet her before heading over to the RIFF Awards Party at Rome City Brewing Company.

Monday Nov. 11 - Special FREE Veterans Day screening of ‘Saving Private Ryan’ at the Rome City Auditorium, 7 p.m.

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