Review: Short Film Competition Programme 1
Report on the first of ADFF's eclectic shorts
18.10.2012 - ADFF has a world-class selection
of titles and the Short Film Competition is no exception. This
year's programme of international shorts is as eclectic as ever;
the films represented are as varied in their styles and techniques
as the countries they come from. Attending the competition's first
scheduled programme last night gave me the opportunity to catch
some of the shorts selection and to hear firsthand what the
directors and producers had to say about their films.
The programme started with The
Island - Al Djazira, a 19-minute post-apocalyptic sci-fi film
directed by Amin Sidi-Boumedine, and set in contemporary Algiers,
but in an alternate reality. The highly imaginative film raised the
curiosity of many in the audience, leading to a number of questions
during the Q&A afterwards, particularly concerning its message.
The producers said that the film is meant to be a look at how it
might be if immigration was reversed and people moved from Europe
to North Africa. The film left me filled with imagined
possibilities about what the future might hold.
This was followed a Brazilian animated film, Linear,
directed by Amir Admoni. It tells the story of a tiny worker and
his linear adventure in a very busy metropolis. Discussing his
film, Admoni said he wanted to depict how it felt to move from a
relatively calm city like Amsterdam to a bustling conurbation like
São Paolo. Next up was The Hounds, a film described by
director Manuel Schapira, who hails from France, as a medium for
experiencing all kinds of emotions. It tells the story of three
friends who attend a house-warming party; one of them witnesses
disturbing scenes of violence.
In Modern No. 2, Japanese director Mirai Mizue has an
interesting take on animation, experimenting with background
music that resembles the Atari video games of the mid-'70s. On a
less serious note is Abu Rami, the charming story of an
elderly Lebanese couple who are stranded on their way to visit
their son, leading to secrets being disclosed - it's a winning
fusion of comedy and drama. Director Sabah Haider noted that her
inspiration came from a taxi ride she once had in which the driver
told her about his many wives in different cities.
In Lehmbruckstrasse, Friedrichshain,
Berlin, director Fritz Polzer invites us to peek into the
lives of lifelong friends who nostalgically reminisce about their
childhood memories of East Germany, a country that doesn't exist
anymore. The low-key approach here is an effective one.
The screening ended with the Emirati film Murk Light.
In it director Yassir Al Yassir takes us on a journey with two
friends, visiting strangers and evoking childhood memories along
the way. The production of the film and the cinematography are
outstanding, with clever use of sets and props to depict the UAE of
a bygone era.
Stay tuned for the rest of ADFF's Short Film Competition - you
won't be disappointed.
Shorts Competition Programme 1 screens again on Thursday 18
October at 1:30 pm at VOX Cinemas.
Shorts Competition Programme 2 screens at VOX Cinemas on
Thursday 18 October at 4:15 pm.
Shorts Competition Programme 3 screens at VOX Cinemas on Friday
19 October at 1:30 pm.
Shorts Competition Programme 4 screens at VOX Cinemas on Friday
19 October at 4 pm.