Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Angelus Film Festival & Awards
Last Saturday, I got FREE tickets to go to the Directors Guild of America (DGA) Bld at 7920 Sunset Blvd to see the Angelus Student Film Festival and Awards. I'd never been to the DGA before but I was praying that God would be present and evident at this event. Turns out that the Angelus is an organization formed by Holy Cross Catholic church and the Family Theater Productions so most of the films had a love, faith, family or humanity angle and God, love or faith was mentioned often and to much applause by the crowd.
Student films from around the world were judged and the honorable mentions shown earlier in the afternoon in the lush DGA theater. Then the winning films were shown at the evening screening ceremony hosted by the Film Freak aka Leo Quinones and Fr. Willy Raymond. The films were all introduced by past Angelus winners and the awards were presented to the winners at that time.
The students took the stage after their respective films screened and were lead onstage by a hostess in a red satin dress plus there was musical accompaniment by a stellar 3 piece band playing music from the respective student films just as the Oscars do (goose bumps). Then each student accepted their awards, made short acceptance speeches, had their pictures taken then were played off to a reception backstage.
Here are the winners:
Angelus Director’s Choice Award3:25 SHOOT THE MOON (Alexander Gaeta, Chapman University) 24 mins
Angelus Outstanding Animation Award
THE LIGHTHOUSE (Po Chou Chi, University of California, Los Angeles) 8 mins
Angelus Director’s Choice Award
TEAMWORK (Seo Yun Hong, New York University) 12 mins
The Priddy Brothers Outstanding Documentary Award
LOVE HACKING (Jenni Nelson, Stanford University) 22 mins
The Fujifilm Audience Impact Award
THE LOVE SONG OF ISKRA PRUFROCK (Lucy Gaffy, Australian Film Television and Radio School) 16 mins
The Mole-Richardson Production Excellence Award
BE STILL (Karrie Crouse and Will Joines, Columbia University) 17 mins
The Peter Glenville Foundation “Triumph” Award
THIEF (Julian Higgins, American Film Institute) 25 mins
Grand Prize Winner - Excellence in Filmmaking Award
RAJU (Max Zahle, Hamburg Media School, Germany) 24 mins
My IMHO Reviews:
First off, I must say I loved the awesome body art segments that introduced each of the categories. The specifics of each award was tattooed on various body parts of different people and then presented to the camera as a close-up shot. I'm not a fan of tattoos and this may have been simulated tattoos or temporary tats but I think it was a novel idea.
Concerning the films, I was late so I missed the two Director's Choice and the animated category but I enjoyed viewing all the others. My favs were Love Hacking, a short documentary about inter-racial, inter-faith love among a computer geek and a Nepalese woman, The Thief, the story about Iraq with the Saddam Hussein look-a-like, and the heart wrenching, Raju, about child abduction in India. Be Still was touchingly sad also as was the 2 live singers on stage singing the lyrics "Mother Ado, I'm so sorry for you" from a country gospel song about heaven that was featured in the film. Look to see one of these films to nab an Oscar nom in a few months.
Angelus screens some of the best humanity inspired live, animated and documentary short films world wide, many of which are sure to get Oscar nominations in 2012.
Speaking of Oscar, Luke Matheny, the tall, exuberant, pencil-thin, curly headed writer, director, actor and 2010 Oscar award-winner was at this event. In fact, Matheny was one of last years Angelus student winners also and he went on to win an Oscar for his short film "god of Love". He came back to introduce one of this year's student winners and he mentioned that he didn't have much experience with God but that the Angelus film committee had shown him about God by supporting him and being like family during last years Oscars.
After the screening, I got to speak to Luke about how good God is and I encouraged him to believe God! I also spoke to him about his film, his peculiar journey to film making and his amazing Oscar speech. And, as a bonus, I got to run my hand through his vibrant curly 'do. :D
I am continually amazed at how much access God is giving me here in Hollywood, all to His glory! More adventures to come so stay tuned!