Fresh Film Festival Junior Finals Awards 2012
Thursday 29th of March – Storm Cinemas Limerick
The 16th annual Junior’s Fresh Film Festival took place at Storm Cinemas in Limerick on Thursday 29th of March, with all of the participants gathered the atmosphere was jovial, relaxed and filled with the patter of little feet all eagerly awaiting a day filled with laughter and short films.
The Junior category of the Fresh Film Festival is, from what I can see, an introduction class to filmmaking, with support from parents, teachers, friends and peers. Children below the age of 12 are placed in a safe environment and given a snippet of what the world of film is like but more importantly giving them the opportunity to let their creative juices run riot and that they did in spades. The stories told throughout the day were a mixture of action, adventure, news bulletins, adverts and a heavy dose of animation.
The day started with a rousing cheer started by Ciarda Tobin, festival coordinator and long time youth related worker, congratulating all who have managed to make it this far, the level of interest in submitting films having tripled from that of last year. Ms. Tobin then went on introduce the schedule of events for today a fun filled 4 hours of movies made lovingly by the audience and with that the day was underway. Here is a small cross section of some of the highlights throughout the day.
Session 1 – 10:30 – 11:24
Jail Breakout, Street Killer, Vampire
Johnathan Connolly,Galway. (1:34), (1:23), (1:00).
Johnathan Connolly’s various legomations were certainly one of the highlights of the screenings throughout the day. What struck me about all of Johnathan’s efforts was the level of time gone into making them, each scene carefully thought-out, slowly and painstakingly moved piece by piece under stop-motion practices. His animations were high speed action packed treats and utilized sound quite well with various ambient noises and sound effects to fill out his thrilling adventures.
Sligo Zoom, North West Film School, Sligo/Leitrim. (6:17)
The innovation is what stuck out in this film, with the low budget of many of the films screened at this year’s festival it takes some serious ingenuity to overcome various obstacles in creating something fresh and innovative. The troupe from Sligo Zoom opted to choreograph their fight sequences while lying on the floor with a high wide angle shot, much in a similar vein to rostrum camera work, giving the allusion of high stakes action.
Secret Agent Duck, Cameron and the Zombie
Rachel Murphy, Barking Happy Face Studios, Wicklow. (2:00) (0:48)
More enjoyable hand drawn animation, showing great patience and a steady hand, Rachel Murphy drew out all of her stories and in stop motion form and managed to bring vivid and whimsical stories to life.
According to Legend
Our Lady of Good Counsel, Drimnagh/Cuach Productions, Dublin/Antrim. (8:24)
This story of a group of boys and the fabled tale of a secret answer sheet to all the tests to be taken in school, buried deep within the basement, was one of the best told stories. It relied heavily on props for comedic effect and bestows the moral of the importance of studying at the end.
Attack of the Rainbow Cats
John Farrelly, IF Films, Meath. (1:43)
John Farrelly showed a creative use of special effects throughout the day in his various films featured in the festival. ‘Attack of the Rainbow Cats’ utilized the now infamous Nyan Cat from the web meme and did what many of us have only dreamed of doing; blowing it up.
Alex Bourke ALBOW animation, Dublin.
Alex Bourke’s ‘Happy Bob’ animations were wonderfully vibrant and varied tales, which must have taken ages to produce. All hand drawn and coloured, ‘Happy Bob’ went on various adventures throughout the course of the festival and kept the audience engaged at all times.
The Other Girl
Tara Kelehan, GFC,Galway. (0:34)
Tara Kelehan’s ‘The Other Girl’ produced some amazing hand drawn images, this briefest of short animations tells the tale of self consciousness and unrequited love and I found it quiet powerful given its short on screen time.
Iseult Cahill, St. Michael’s NS, YIFM, Limerick/Kilkenny. (3:07)
This short skit like film had the audience bent over with laughter and proved to me that kids pretending to be adults is honestly one of the funniest things one can experience. The OLD-lympics being a clever play on the Olympics but for the elderly featuring hilarious events such as hearing competition, power knitting, bingo and the 100 metres walk.
Session 2 – 12:00 – 1:15
The Celts in Desertserges
Rang 4,5,6, Ahiohill NS, Cork. (5:20)
This well researched documentary on the Celts was surely the best documentary of the day. Clearly a group effort, the various classes taking part set about investigating the various remnants of a time long gone by throughout Desertserges in Co. Cork. The team then set about recreating some of the more interesting things found through their research and with use of photographic evidence educated the audience on our history with the Celts.
Our Lady of Good Counsel, Drimnagh/Cuach Productions, Dublin/Antrim. (4:16)
Another hilariously scripted piece from the boys of Our Lady of Good Counsel, this time telling the story of an evil teacher hell bent on destroying the school. The piece works well due to the witty dialogue and clear enjoyment of all those taking part.
Rachel Cronin, Finn Summers, Cian Kingerlee, Seda Crowdy, Clodagh Piper de Breit,Cappabue NS, Cork. (7:30)
This was certainly the stick out piece from the entire day at the Fresh Film Festival. This wonderfully imaginative story tells the tale of a brother and sister who after overhearing their parents mention that they have ‘lost the house’, set out on an adventure with their friends to try and find it again. The film was competently shot and a wholly enjoyable experience to watch.
Session 3 – 1:40 – 2:15
Summer Camp News
Craig Crowley, Ard na Chleanna Youth Club, Tramore, YIFM, Waterford/Kilkenny. (4:17)
This was one of the cutest films screened throughout the day, the fictional broadcast of Summer Camp News was an hilarious take on a regular news bulletin which succeeded due to its hilarious script. While having fun throughout the team remained composed during takes which aided the comedic effect.
James Frizzell, Rang 5,6. GortskehyNS, Mayo. (5:00)
This was another very stylish adaptation based on a short story by Patrick Hession and James Frizzell, the film tells the tale of a tiger raid with a slow eerie sense throughout the team managed to make a thrilling, tense and stylish film with no dialogue whatsoever.
My Little Black Donkey
3rd Class, Claddagh NS, Galway. (5:15)
This was surely the most stylish claymation of the day, utilizing various forms of animation from claymation stop motion to paper cut outs this is the vivid retelling of Padraig O’Connaire’s short story of the same name showed the tenderness and care that all must have gone into to recreate such a magnificent animation.
The Radharc Trust Award: The Celts in Desertserges
Script Niall Our Lady of Good Counsel
Visual Style Lego Animation Johnathan Connolly
Third Prize: Something in the Water
Second Prize: John Farrelly
Ireland’s Junior Filmmaker: Lost Property of the Year Rachel Cronin, Finn Summers, Cian Kingerlee, Seda Crowdy, Clodagh Piper de Breit.
By Cian Henniger