Thursday, January 28, 2016

Vancouver Short Film Festival : BC & The World & Dark Deeds---Friday's Films Vancity Theater Friday Jan, 29, 2016

I have been given the honor once again to be able to review some of the films for this event, this being my second year doing so.
I am going to be at the event on Friday night Jan 29 , looking forward to seeing these on a bigger screen.

BC & THE WORLD FILMS:



                                           THE BLUE JET                                     

DIRECTED BY LAWRENCE LE LAM 
RUNNING TIME : 15:09

This is a great little film , the sounds of the time. It's 1970's in Taipei, Taiwan. The Blue Jet is a hero to our young group of people in the local community he was someone to admire as he wore his hair long in the time of when the Secret Youth Police would catch you and cut your hair. Playing song after song The Blue Jet was playing anti-war songs and he was given many warnings about it all.
Some great storytelling and had the chance to chat with the director of the film on Facebook here is some of what he had to say, this is based on fact--his father was The Blue Jet.


"The process with fun because since its based on my dad's story
I interviewed him several times
I originally wrote the story from Blue Jet's perspective in 2012
but it didn't quite work
I put it aside and pick it back up with I needed a grad project proposal. I almost did do it because I was saving it for a feature
I almost didn't think I could a short version because in real life so much happens


It's funny because when I floated the idea by my teachers they got excited and encouraged me, then I started working on it again and I got excited, then I pitched them a rough story, but they thought it was going to be a documentary not a dramatic film
they told me I couldn't do it
that made me want to do it more.
My dad has allot of elements to his real life story, he didn't get into his university program (film/TV) because  he was too busy with girls, rock n roll, he gets a radio job, gets popular, sell bootleg radio then underground concerts but I realize one day,I'm telling it wrong
Taking inspiration from The Man Who Planted Trees  which is about an extraordinary man who turn a desolate land into a lush community. Its very poetic and beautifully told, but what was inspiring about this film (which won an academy award) was how it told the story of this man who we never really get to know, they a nameless legend "athlete of god"
So I wanted to recapture that form of story-telling, and I realized I had to distance the perspective from The Blue Jet and keep him mythical, and so I invent the character of the fan boy."




                                        MIGRANT BODIES                                 
RUNNING TIME: 15:35

Next comes an interesting piece called "Migrant Bodies" here we have some dance , people of many different backgrounds and such where certain aspects of personalities are danced too. To have a better understanding this is what the director Xavier Cumillon sent to me.
"Through the subjective force of movement, the phenomenal dancers perform a unique interpretation of the stages of the migration process. Simultaneously developing the ideas of attraction, loss, grief, adaptation, creativity and initiative, their states are set in non-specific places where the emptiness of the unknown conveys to us the destabilization felt by individuals and their community as a result of this migratory process.
Xavier Curnillon takes an original experimental approach in this introspective and metaphorical piece, where contemporary dance, words, graphics and music from various cultures reveal the possibilities of assimilation and the creative integration of the migrants that we are, or that our ancestors might have been.
An introspective and metaphorical narrative of the migration process, told through extraordinary dance movements of silent bodies in a non-place.
It's all about ''interpretation of the stages of the migration process'' Inspired by some research. Film inspired from the work of
Valérie Michaud
''Lorsque l'imaginaire migratoire rencontre les réalités de la migration:
parcours de migrants volontaires et qualifiés de l’Afrique de l’Ouest au Québec''
Département d’Anthropologie, Faculté des arts et des sciences
Université de Montréal
Joël FRONTEAU
 ''Le processus migratoire : La traversée du miroir'', dans G. Legault (dir.), L’intervention interculturelle (pp. 1-40), Montréal, éd. Gaëtan Morin, p. 22-23."



                                                 IMPERIAL                                        
RUNNING TIME: 11:38

The next film is "Imperial" where a man's thoughts and images in his mind make for some interesting visuals also some good work with the camera. The voice over gives us somewhat of an idea of what our lead character is thinking --but yet more going on in the full scope of things as well. I did enjoy this film as well good job all around and the soundtrack was something that worked well with the visuals , old songs from the era of my grandfather possibly.



                               VANCOUVER ZOETROPE                               
RUNNING TIME: 5:00

Here we have another film , this is different yet again as this has a historical look at the history of the Burrard Street Bridge from it's inception of 1932 with pictures and music to today and the Burrard inlet as well. Piano piece makes the visuals play out nicely it is Fredric Chopin's Berceuse in D-flat major, Op.57



                                              NEPHEW                                             
RUNNING TIME: 17:08

This is another interesting piece of work, here we are given three different snippets into peoples lives. Two are interviews of a certain part of these people's lives and one from the perspective of a young man Eric(above) who sees his uncle on the bus one day and goes and tries to reconnect with him.
Some wonderful work all around here.


                                 DARK DEEDS FILMS:










                                             THEARC                                         RUNNING TIME: 13:00
 
 The Arc yet again is a group of stories one is of a marriage on the rocks-a young man given and opportunity to make it big with some piers and a dying wife. Hitting their peak and then the film ends wanting more from this little story. We are shown only a snap of what is happening in the peoples stories , engaging and well done I hope there is a second act to this one.



                                             THE HALLOW                                
RUNNING TIME: 11:42

This is the darker of the films for sure and made me pay attention right away. The mood set here is dark and unsettling from the first open of the camera. A young woman at home with her older father is riddled with his abuse , verbally throughout. The setting of him just sitting in his chair watching old WWF wrestling and demanding her to get him a beer etc, finally takes it toll. It is Hallowe'en in the story--she decides for one last mask to wear for the occasion of daughter knows best.



                                                  RED HANDED                          
RUNNING TIME: 7:30

There have been an incredible amount of great films here, this is just the first night of films what a treat this one was as well. A jogger-the man pictured above is jogging on a path in the woods having some younger men pass by and laugh at him , he decides to run through the forest and stumbles upon something he should not have--the film works very well in it's "short" time to tell the story.
Felt very stylish to that of Joel & Ethan Coen some great work here all around --directing and editing certainly helped the pace here.



                         VEHICULAR ROMANTICIDE                          
RUNNING TIME: 16:06

This is an interesting story , a love story of sorts with a car. Well she hits men with her car to try and stir up a conversation with the men she does as she is finding her success any other way of dating is just not working. A dark romantic comedy if you will.
This takes an even darker twist and has her having a conversation , we know where she is and yet do we?

Bravo all around to all the filmmakers and the crews, actors and actresses all around --look forward to Saturday's films now.


Thank you for reading this
Sincerely
Anthony Nadeau