One of the many great things about Montreal is the numerous festivals that it holds, almost year round. Although especially prominent during the summer, I’ve come up to Montreal quite a few times for some of their summer festivals, there are some equally exciting festivals during the winter. There have been several film festivals just in the few months that I’ve been here and many more I’m sure that I wasn’t aware of. One of the film festivals I was up in Montreal to see was the ArtFIFA (International Festival on Films on Art).
The screening I went to was a series of short films, as is often the case in Canadian Film Festivals. There were, of course, films I didn’t personally enjoy as much as others, and luckily it’s not usually long until one film ends and another begins. There were two films that I really enjoyed and greatly peaked my interest.
The first film which was a documentary/behind the scenes on a film about New York politicians. The filmmakers took speeches from politicians and had actors in a theater repeat them as if they were banter, arguments, discussions between two actual people. The artistic intent in this film, unlike the majority of the others was original and eye opening. This short film actually intrigued me into trying to find the actual film/performance to get the full impact of the filmmakers intent.
The second film I enjoyed was a monologue spoken in Danish and typed on a typewriter in English. It told the story of an artists brother who had a mental disability and part of his family life living with that. This was luckily the longest of the short films and was well worth watching. Even though he spoke in Danish his facial expression and body language gave significant expressions to what we then read being typed out.
Short films are a staple of Canadian culture and it’s certainly something I’m not used to coming from America. With limited funds and access as opposed to Hollywood and private funding, short films are sometimes a “hit” or “miss”. It is definitely worth attending at least one film festival, however. Although there can be some“misses”, that one “hit” can be well worth it.
– Written by Dylan Rainville, Game Art major, Spring 2013