Give Me Five Film Festival: A Student’s Perspective

givemeThe Give Me 5 film festival took place on Saturday, May 17, at the Columbus Theatre in Providence. There was a strong showing of student films from multiple schools across the state of various genres and subjects. There were art films such as Embrace, a skate film that used beautiful cinematography to show the artists’ inner peace while skating, Slaughter the Cockroaches, a documentary on the tragic Rwandan genocide, and many more. The structure of the festival was organized and a fun experience for all.

Upon entering the lobby, filmmakers signed in by name and the school they were representing. After that, each student was given a Give Me 5 t-shirt and a bag of pamphlets. Inside were brochures for different film schools and two gifts. The first was a voucher for a free small soda and popcorn. The second was a free pass to the Rhode Island International Film Festival, a $150 value. The first gift was a nice way for the students to get comfortable for the movies. The second was an extremely generous and exciting opportunity for these budding filmmakers to experience a film festival on a larger, and more professional, scale — an amazing opportunity for high school students.

During the screening, the first films were one-minute shorts designed to challenge students to tell a story in a small timeframe. While not Oscar winners, these movies showed the creativity and adaptability of the students, and were often humorous. After that, they started the five-minute shorts. What was best about this portion of the festival was the critiques. Each filmmaker got to go on stage after his or her movie was shown and listen to three judges give both praise and constructive criticism. This process is a great idea for two reasons: First, it builds the artist’s confidence in his or her work, and second, it allows filmmakers to grow and develop their craft. These critiques were a learning experience for many of the filmmakers. When the intermission hit, the organizers served us free pizza for lunch.

Overall, the experience was a great one. The people running the festival made sure everyone was comfortable and gave out nice gifts. Getting seated was quick and efficient, and everyone had the same length of time for critiques. The festival was well run and organized; everything was ready to go, and all needs taken care of. It went smoothly, and this organization on their part led to a great time for all involved.

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