This year I had the honor (again) of looking at up and coming filmmakers’ work on display as part of the annual Beneath The Earth Film Festival. The Class of 2012 was an eclectic mix of films that ranged from near-feature length to digital shorts from all around the world.
I am pleased to say the two films that garnered the top prizes this year were among my favorite of the lot:
BEST FILM (as selected by the Grand Jury): Ditching School to Whistle
SUMMARY: In April 2012, filmmaker Ien Chi set out to enter an international whistling competition and make a short documentary film about it. This is what resulted.
I really like the premise of this film; in my notes, I indicated that what worked for me about this film was the fact that it presented a topic that I would not have otherwise given much attention. And the skill of the filmmaker made it such that I was entertained by what I saw on screen.
AUDIENCE AWARD (as selected by the general public): The Double
SUMMARY: In Japanese colonial era of Taiwan, the rain season bore twins destined to be abandoned. Ameko has been in illness isolation since childhood. While Yu has nightmares every night. Their mother died early and Father is always away from home. Rippling waves stir memories of youth. A heavy fog gradually disperses, revealing the end of a dream and a flower called ‘the double’.
To me, this film was simply sublime. It was very atmospheric and had a lovely soundtrack to accompany what we saw on screen. This film is Taiwanese director Yu-Tong Weng’s graduation project.
OTHER CATEGORY WINNERS:
Best Story: Ditching School to Whistle
Best Editing: Refuge
Best Cinematography: Extranjero
Best Soundtrack: The Double
Best Acting: Refuge
If you are interested in catching these (or any of the other films in competition) you have until the end of the month; simply go to: http://beneathearth.com/watch/
Congratulations to ALL the filmmakers with a special shout out to the winning filmmakers!
Until next year …