With the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival officially opening to the public on Tuesday, Martha Fischer, Christopher Campbell and I decided to hash out the good and the bad, as we've seen it thus far. Here I am, starting the conversation; Martha and Chris will chime in over the next couple of days.

Hey Chris and Martha,

So, here we are, with another Tribeca upon us. With this being your first attempt to cover the Festival, I tried to prepare you guys for the challenge; unfortunately, I think we're finding that once again, the almighty Programmers have answered their critics by allowing the previous year's problem spots to become measurably worse. The question that seems to be on everyone's mind this year is: why does Tribeca feel the need to be so damn big? Certainly, Tribeca 2006 seems to have contracted a disease that more and more festivals are catching: when scope is of primary concern, taken as a whole, any great big lineup is going to be padded heavily with films that, quite simply, really suck. And if the Festival is daunting enough to journalists that the torture of covering it seems to take up more ink and pixel space than actual coverage of films, one can't imagine that the average New Yorker is too enthused about standing in endless lines, all over the city, to lay out $25 for a pair of seats.

Which is a shame, because in the last week, I've caught some amazing documentaries that definitely deserve to be seen.