London Festival Fringe – Roxy Bar and Screen, 18 August 2010
The entrants to this competition all have one thing in common: the ability to work to an extremely tight deadline.
Last February each entrant team was given a title and genre, both selected separately and at random, along with a deadline 48 hours later, when they had to submit the final product.
Each of the movies was posted on You Tube and the judges had the tricky task of scoring each movie, all of which are quite different from each other and come from many different genres. They couldn’t have been easy to compare. The winner was selected by a very narrow margin and announced at the end of the screening.
The evening overall was very enjoyable and wonderfully presented by Katya Ozols. Three of the judges were present and went through each of the entrant films giving an individualised critique to each of the teams, much to the interest of the rest of the audience, most of whom seemed to be in the industry. All seven films can be seen on You Tube or via link on the London Festival Fringe site. This is a great opportunity for filmmakers to showcase their skills without incurring huge expense. The judges were clearly enthusiastic about the process and had a lot to say in the Q&A session following the screening and award.
Title: 3 Lives
Director: Mark Withers
On Screen: Trudi Jackson, Matthew Walker, Vivienne Gibbs, Fliss Walton, Lucy Caplin, Al Constantine, Nish, Tim Diggle
This movie was shot with a camcorder and documents the morning of an unconventional London wedding. It was part comedy and part romance.
Team: Art is Useless
Title: The Well of Loneliness
Director: Jimmy Henderson
This movie is true to the genre. The filmmakers take quite a daring option in shooting the film in black and white and without dialogue. To compensate, the makers have used sound, music and beautifully eerie shots to create the atmosphere.
Title: What Maisie Knew
Director: Pavol Kajan
Writer: Annabel Dearing
Producer: Natalie Thomas
On Screen: Ruth Posner, Rob Lyndon, Provence Maydeo, Lady Suzy
This film was shot as a documentary. An unconvinced presenter interviews a young woman who has perfected the art of speaking with cats. It is a very clever idea and well presented.
Team: Spontaneous Skamp
Title: A day off
Director: Sophie Windsor Clive
On screen: Sande Schells, Adam Skidmore
This is a quirky movie showing Vincent Van Gough having some down time. The story is told through narration and some very memorable music. The shots and editing are very pleasing and the idea is unique.
Team: Water Rats
Title: Miss Lonely Hearts
Director: James Ward
Story: James Ward, Dory Dutton, Samuel Recko, Patric Lyons
Editors: Matthew Tanti, Aaron Moore
The grainy film and film noir shots combine with a very unusual story to create this film. There is nothing run of the mill about this film and all but the most intuitive of spectators will come away with more than a bit of doubt as to what they have actually just seen.
Team: Yardie Style
Director: Rhyannon Brand
Writer: Shelley-Ann Higgins
Actor: Lee Neville
The setting and sounds set up a creepy atmosphere. The script and acting maintain it. This short generated a lot of discussion as the version which was screened on the night was different to that which the judges judged. The filmmakers said that they accepted their marks on the original version, however due to a difficulty with editing within the deadline, they decided to present what they felt was the best cut for the entertainment of the audience on the night.
Award Judges: Phil Wood, Manager and Programmer at the Roxy Bar and Screen; Nathan Theys, Director, Film Creatives; Enrique Rovira, Director, Producer, Editingpoint.com; Kathy Hill, Director, Writer, ‘Down and Out in Cannes
Presenter: Katya Ozols
Reviewed 19 August
(c) Leanne O’Loughlin 2010