A German eye on the Drama film festival

Wolfgang Laengsfeld, a professor of film, drama and film production at the Munich Film Academy, was recently in Greece as president of the judging committee at the International Competition of the Short Film Festival of Drama, and secondly, to lecture at the Goethe Institute on Learning the Art of Film. Too European Laengsfeld spoke to Kathimerini about his impressions of the festival in Drama. Unfortunately, he said, most of the films were European. An international festival should also include entries from Latin America, Asia, and Australia. That is the characteristic of a real international event. Of the 90 films shown, only 40 percent were good. The problem in a festival is not the good or bad films, but the boring ones. The German professor did not see all of the Greek films screened. I only saw three Greek films that were taking part in the international competition, though from what I heard, the films in the Greek program were better than the ones we saw. Laengsfeld has many years’ experience in evaluating the quality of student films; both as an academic and a producer. Young students, he says, are increasingly interested in new technologies, animation, documentary and avant-garde expression in film. Many films use a video-clip style of filming – quick, chopped editing – whose result I don’t like very much because they seem to lose the point of the story. The eye and the mind need time to take in what they see. I need to see something for a while before I understand whether I like it or not. Film schools Laengsfeld also talked about the problems in Greece regarding education in film. It is a shame that there are no state-run film schools in Greece. At the International Festival of the Munich Higher Institute of Film [which Laengsfeld founded and directs], Greek films are always in the mediocre category. New directors do indeed learn something in private schools, but they need much more. Schools must go after the people with talent. Talent is something that cannot be taught, but it can be nurtured and developed. The role of a school is to provide technical knowledge and a theoretical background; somewhere in between a school becomes an art academy that helps its students develop as artists and individuals, argues the German film professor. The prizes The 24th annual Short Film Festival at Drama ended on Saturday with the awards ceremony. The first prize for a fictional story was awarded to Gogo by Panayiotis Fafoutis and the second prize to See No Evil by Aris Bafaloukas. The first documentary prize went to Angela Mylonaki for Angela, the best student film prize to Ti Kitas? (What are You Looking at?) by Melpomeni Tsaroucha and the Greek of the World Award was bestowed upon Alexandros Adraktas’s Doctor Druden. In the international competition, the first two awards were given to Et Cetera by Russia’s Andrey Osipov and Copy Shop by Austria’s Virgil Windrich, while the Best Balkan Film award went to Telefteos Tabakos by Lefteris Danikas. 1 kilo fresh figs

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