Alumnus to Debut New Film in Sioux Falls

"You Don't Know Bertha Constantine," a film shot in the Badlands and written and directed by Andrew Kightlinger, a 2008 graduate of Augustana, will make its world premiere at 7 p.m. on Friday, April 15, at the Washington Pavilion’s Belbas Theatre.

Kightlinger, a native of Pierre, S.D., is a graduate student at Boston University's College of Communication, Film Production.

The “Bertha” screenplay has already won wide acclaim – it was named "Most Original New Screenplay" at the Newport International Film Festival and won the short screenplay catagory at the Honolulu International Film Festival.

The film stars Dr. Julia Pachoud Bennett, former assistant professor of Theatre at Augustana, as "Bertha Constantine,” a woman poised to celebrate her 25th wedding anniversary when her husband, Larry, suddenly dies.

In a state of grief, Bertha decides to honor her husband’s wish to be buried in South Dakota’s Badlands. She wraps Larry’s body in a sleeping bag and uses a plastic sled to drag him across the jagged terrain.

With authorities hot on her trail, Bertha must kick into high gear in hopes of reaching the burial site before facing arrest.

"You Don't Know Bertha Constantine

World Premiere: 7 p.m. Friday, April 15, Washington Pavilion Belbas Theatre

Augustana Showing: 7 p.m. Friday, April 29, GSC 100

“You Don’t Know Bertha Constantine” is a stirring and unusual exploration of the grieving process and the actions one must take to satisfy the soul.

Kightlinger will also present the film and participate in a Q&A with students at Augustana at 7 p.m. on Friday, April 29, in GSC 100.

Read the story about Kightlinger's premiere in South Dakota Magazine.

Kelly Sprecher
Director of Communications & Media Relations