Last week, I posted in a comment on another entry that I am not a fanboy. I still stand by that remark, especially since I'm not a boy. Give me a choice between a comic-book adaptation and an Austin-made indie and I tend to favor the latter. I have a definite weakness for romantic comedy at times. I prefer snappy dialogue over splashy special effects. But I suspect that fewer people than ever will believe that I am not a fanboy (or fangirl, to be fair) after I tell you that I spent last weekend at the 24-hour Austin film marathon known as the Butt-Numb-a-Thon, which is heralded by many as a litmus test for major film geekiness.
The Butt-Numb-a-Thon (BNAT for short) is an annual event organized by Harry Knowles of Ain't It Cool News. Knowles programs 11 or 12 movies at Alamo Drafthouse Downtown in Austin -- half are interesting vintage films, and half are movies that haven't been released in theaters yet. The lineup is not made public, so everything's a surprise. Sometimes, the directors of the unreleased films show up for a Q&A session, or send video greetings to the BNAT attendees. It's mostly a private event, which always occurs on the weekend of Knowles' birthday, from noon one day to noon(ish) the next. For the most part, prospective attendees have to apply for admission (thousands fill out the application, and the theater seats 200), and Knowles hand-picks the guests. It's a party and film marathon all in one, and many attendees know each other from past BNATs or from the Ain't It Cool talkback forums. However, there are always a few empty seats because of last-minute cancellations, so it's possible to get into the event as a standby. I had a lot of fun waiting unsuccessfully in the standby line last year, and decided to try it again. A lottery is used to select the lucky standby tickets, and miracle of miracles, I was the last one picked.