April 26, 2012
By Jamie K.
As I walked down the red carpet at NFFTY’s 2012 Festival, I felt like I could get used to this. Being a youth filmmaker myself, NFFTY is a fantastic opportunity for youth all across the world. This year they are showing 222 films from 30 states and over 20 countries, and if opening night was any indication of this year’s festival, film enthusiasts are in for a treat. The opening night gala showcased six films -- everything from a claymation short about people getting saved from a burning building by crows, to a recent widower who begins playing shuffleboard against youth fifty years younger.
Da Capo, a short film about dreaming, breakdancing and gravity, was definitely one of the most interesting. With it’s crazy dance moves, enthralling voiceovers, and special effects, it was one of the most captivating films of the evening.
Shuffleboard Kings was also one of my favorites. It follows a recent widower who joins a local senior shuffleboard team that competes against a group of young bullies for shuffleboard supremacy. With a combination of humor, sadness, and fantastic direction, it was one of the best of the evening.
En Route, was yet another one of my favorites. It follows the life of a professional pilot, and backtracks through his life and all the choices he makes; ones that ultimately alter his fate. I am usually not a fan of using a lot of visual effects, but the film’s storyline keeps you so deeply enticed that you really only notice it if you are looking for it.
Even though I have only mentioned three, all of the films shown were fantastic. The future of film is definitely bright.
After all the films, everyone headed over to the after party at the Seattle Aquarium. With a DJ in one section of the aquarium you could dance and party, and in the back you could enjoy refreshments while networking with everyone from the CTO of a head premier sponsor to speaking with an abundance of youth filmmakers, writers, and producers. It was definitely a filmmaker’s networking paradise. I spoke with filmmakers from Afghanistan, Mexico, and more close to home, from Idaho and California. It was great to see the opinions that all these filmmakers brought forward. We discussed many genres, everything from gut wrenching horror film to a web series about the worst cops in the world.
NFFTY runs till Sunday and I highly recommend that you try to go see some of the films being shown. If you’re a youth filmmaker, screenwriter, photographer . . . anything, go see these films. As NFFTY’s founder and Artistic Director Jesse Harris says, “[These films] are the voice of this generation.” He also bluntly states that the filmmakers that have been selected for NFFTY, “will win Oscars someday.” NFFTY is such a great chance for filmmakers from all over the world to come together and share their story in a craft that we all love so deeply.
National Film Festival for Talented Youth runs through Sunday April 29, 2012 with screenings in various locations.
Visit nffty.org for more information and screening times