FILM EVENT: Scotland’s International Film Festival for Children and Young People
October 23, 2011 1 Comment
While the London Film Festival ploughs on, and dear old Best for Film continues to cover as many films as Tash and John’s cramping buttocks will allow, film fever has spread north for Scotland’s International Film Festival for Children and Young People. Young at heart – and face, according to barmen and lottery salespeople alike – I have taken it upon myself to explain why children deserve more than a strict diet of Happy Madison productions and Disney concert movies.
Although Dundee might not be the first place to jump to mind when thinking of cinema – if it jumps to mind at all – it has nevertheless reinvented itself as a supporter of film and the arts, no small thanks to the imminent arrival of the V&A museum. At the centre of this recent shift in focus towards inspiring young talent is Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA), a world-class exhibit for arts and contemporary culture, incorporating a cinema, a gallery and a bustling bar area. In partnership with the local council, university and Creative Scotland, the site has been hosting this annual celebration of cinema for nigh on eight years.
In this respect the festival is as young as many of its patrons, though it more than makes up for its relative youth with a palpable passion that is as refreshing as it is infectious. This year’s festivities opened with a Saturday screening of Jean-Loup Felicioli and Alain Gagnol’s delightful A Cat In Paris, followed by an audience Q&A with the latter, who both scripted and co-directed the feature. Unlike most film festivals, however, the gala did not end there: flanked by workshops, the film was accompanied by a number of related events, including ‘From Tweets To Blogs: Online Film Writing‘, a well-received and informative discussion of the pros and cons of film journalism.
As one such tweeter, blogger and obsessive-compulsive popcorn addict, I can’t help but lament the lack of such creative support during my own formative years. Having only discovered the delights of foreign, fringe and even Bollywood cinema relatively recently, I now see the importance of facilitating the broadening horizons irrespective of age. With one elderly woman berating the director – THE DIRECTOR – over the apparent nuisance of subtitles, it is clear that there is work ahead if we are to look forward to a cinematic array as (if not more) diverse as that which we enjoy today.
With two weeks of the Discovery Film Festival remaining, and with films including Twigson (Knerton - Norway hasn’t let me down yet), You’ve Been Trumped and Light of the River (not to mention a screening of The Adventures of Tintin introduced by lecturer Chris Murray, and tied into the city’s own comic past – Dundee is home to the Beano and the Dandy dontchaknow), this is the perfect opportunity to introduce the next generation of moviegoers to quality world cinema, and to maybe even learn a thing or two yourself.