BIAFF 2015 entries

A forum for sharing views on the art of film, video and AV sequence making as well as on competitions, judging and festivals.
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Mike Shaw
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Mike Shaw » Fri Mar 20, 2015 9:52 am

John Roberts says
Maybe some kind of 'check list' where judges indicate the number of films produced in various genres in the last 5 years might be useful? That might go some way to ensure any one judging panel doesn't end up with three judges whose combined output only covers one genre. Just a thought - it might happen already!
Some Judges don't make any films. Some concentrate on one specific type of movie (which may not even get shown at BIAFF). They would argue that you don't have to lay an egg to tell a good one. Cynics would remind you of the maxim - those that can, do, those that can't, teach/preach.

Knowing most of the BIAFF judges and the type/variety of films they make, I appreciate their assessment and comments on my movies accordingly. Most of the time, I can but agree with the comments which, always, are intended to be helpful. But when one of the judges falls into one of the above categories, I do tend to add a huge dose of salt to the comments. I don't think I've ever noticed when all three judges fall into the same category, so perhaps a balance is maintained.

Sour grapes? I don't think so. As others have pointed out - judges not experienced in a genre or a particular topic can miss some of the finer points, the creator's intentions, the subtleties. But on the other hand, the movie maker maybe should have been clearer in delivering the message.

You can't please all the people all the time, as good ol' Abe once observed ...

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John Roberts
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by John Roberts » Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:03 pm

Mike Shaw wrote:Sour grapes? I don't think so. As others have pointed out - judges not experienced in a genre or a particular topic can miss some of the finer points, the creator's intentions, the subtleties. But on the other hand, the movie maker maybe should have been clearer in delivering the message.

You can't please all the people all the time, as good ol' Abe once observed ...
No sour grapes at all, Mike :) I'm simply trying to understand why the video that was described by the judges as 'well filmed and slickly edited' came away with 2-stars. I think all the judges do a sterling job and I don't necessarily disagree with anything that was fed back to me, I just detected the possibility of a collective non-understanding of the genre. But, we shall move onwards and upwards, or rather downwards to Sittingbourne next month! :D

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Mike Shaw
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Mike Shaw » Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:26 pm

Oh I agree (I did say 'I don't think so' to sour grapes)

I had similar contradictory comments on my miserable two-star.

Also, I saw it as a kind of shaggy dog story - slow build up to a twist ending. They saw it as a long drawn out joke. I reckon shorter would have lost the impact of the ending. They reckoned its length didn't justify the end. But loved the photography, camera angles CUs etc etc...

The happy news is audiences have been amused by it and responded accordingly

Maybe one day I'll put it YouTube ... let the world judge. I know it isn't a masterpiece by any means ... but two? (Sobs into beer).

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John Roberts
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by John Roberts » Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:32 pm

Mike Shaw wrote:(Sobs into beer).
I'll buy you a beer on Sunday, Mike - if you'll buy me one! :D

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Mike Shaw
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Mike Shaw » Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:39 pm

You're on!

Brian Saberton
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Brian Saberton » Fri Mar 20, 2015 3:38 pm

It isn't just in our world where there can be problems playing discs on some equipment. At a recent screening I attended at the Glasgow Film Festival all attempts to get a film on the digital format to play, failed so this sort of thing can also happen to the pros. On the subject of dissappointing results I think we all tend to get too close to our films, especially if they take a long time to produce, and it's easy to overlook something in the narrative or structure that seems clear to us, but may convey a different meaning to the audience or the judges. For example, in my own film the judges have quite rightly mentioned a caption that they feel is at odds with some of the subsequent content. Now it seemed fine to me at the time but in hindsight it wasn't really necessary and rather than risk creating a false perception I should probably either have left it off or used different wording.
Brian Saberton

Howard-Smith
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Howard-Smith » Fri Mar 20, 2015 11:57 pm

The last word on my BluRay compatibility issue is that I shall now install Pinnacle Studio version 18 (to replace my version 15), and learn how to author a proper BluRay disc rather than burn an HD file onto a BluRay disc as I've done up to now.

With regard to judges' appraisals, I sometimes think that whatever we put into a film, however we make it, the judges will virtually always find issues for criticism. For example, last year in my film 'Conception', there was an extra-marital love-making scene where the actors kept some clothing on. The judges said, "Why weren't the lovers naked? They should have been as their relationship was based purely on lust." In view of that comment, this year in my film 'Dark Horse' I made sure that the lovers WERE naked... and some judges wondered if the scene was "too explicit" and there was "over-exposure in more ways than one"!

Michael Slowe
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Michael Slowe » Sat Mar 21, 2015 12:05 pm

We're all film makers and consequently all judges, in some form or another. Everytime we go to the cinema we judge the film we're seeing. We don't pick it to pieces but judge it in a general way and that is what our BIAFF judges are doing. They have to pick out items for comment, that is expected of them and, at the same time, they feel obliged to praise aspects of the film if they possibly can, if only to prevent them being branded as 'destructive' as we have read in this forum in past years (viz Prescott!).

As far as my rating this year, (Three Stars), I can see now, having read the quite reasonable comments, that I rather made the mistake outlined by one of our friends above, namely assuming that the events shown would be easily followed by a first time viewer. We are sometimes too close to our project for our own good. Actually my film has been seen by quite a few people now, including a cinema audience, but, to be fair, this audience in the main knew the subject from personal experience. I repeat what I have said many times, judging films (any art for that matter) is so subjective and all a judge can really do is say whether he thought that the work entertains, informs and is well constructed. There is no real need to comment on the technical aspects because, if there are technical deficiencies, the standard of the piece as a whole will suffer and so justify a lower grading. I suppose people want to know why they are failing but it's not always easy as a judge to explain why.

Bob Lorrimer
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Bob Lorrimer » Sat Mar 21, 2015 4:50 pm

Brian Saberton....I remember the BORING FILM from 1971 ! I was there...I had a film which made it to the National Film Theatre although it was not among the TOP TEN. I recall the controversy it caused at the time; the incessantly ringing phone and the complete absence of any action. It 's still boring today and I only managed two minutes of it.....curiously I think the guy eating the crisps is 'overacting' by today's standards! Sometime ago I made a satire of the same film on a Club night......it is a lot funnier but still boring!

***

I am pleased to report that I have hit Gold or rather DIAMOND this year with my unconventional comedy "WRITER's BLOCK."

This is very gratifying for me..I have been near the podium on more than a few occasions...but never ON IT!

Dave Watterson penned a wonderful summary of my film in his 'comments'..... his critique is rather better than my Movie!

***

John Roberts...together with the Director from last year's winning Pop Video have pioneered a new Genre in our Amateur World. The Music Video is a very relevant art form and could well be the 'gateway' to the hearts of a younger membership. I already know that there will be resistance to the horrors of the Music Video genre being intermingled with the BIAFF Competition as a whole but it might be able to stand alone as a 'category' for the Young, for Schools and Colleges who all have bands and media classes. ROCK-ON!

Here is a superb example:



See you at Sittingbourne!

Howard-Smith
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Howard-Smith » Sat Mar 21, 2015 5:10 pm

There are inevitably some of us competitors who think we've been unlucky and perhaps short-changed with the awards we've received. As mentioned previously I was disappointed with the 3-star award for TOO BAD when I fully expected 4 stars. The fact is that the judges only have EXACTLY seven minutes to write down their notes and to confer with the other judges immediately after viewing the film. Whoever writes up the comments has a duty to reflect the views of the whole group of judges. The judges do their very best to be objective and constructive in their criticism, and fair with the star rating. Once the star rating has been given to the adjudicator, that award is 'set in stone' and can't be changed, even if the judge who's writing up the comments at home re-views the film and thinks that the star rating was with hindsight either too high or too low. I used to submit multiple versions of films under different titles and got a diversity of results: at BIAFF 2009 I sent in three different versions of my film MADDER with varying running times, which were seen by different sets of judges, and they got got 4 stars (74 minute version), 2 stars (50 minute version) and 3 stars (34 minute version). The guidelines are well set out for what the star ratings mean, but, as has been said previously, judging isn't an exact science.
Without wishing to refer to any one film in particular, generally speaking, a film might be very good technically in certain aspects, eg. editing and photography, but if the content is deemed to be, for example, insubstantial, repetitive and with weak acting. the judges may well mark it down because of what are perceived to be weaknesses.
Michael, I very much look forward to seeing your new film at BIAFF. My two favourite films of yours are still OUI CHEF! and PAINTER (even though I know you thought PAINTER was too long).
Bob, I hope you were also pleased with the glowing review of WRITERS' BLOCK from the first round judges, which I wrote up. There's no doubt that it's your finest film ever!

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TimStannard
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by TimStannard » Sat Mar 21, 2015 8:15 pm

Bob Lorrimer wrote: I am pleased to report that I have hit Gold or rather DIAMOND this year with my unconventional comedy "WRITER's BLOCK."
All I can say is "About bloody time!"
Tim
Proud to be an amateur film maker - I do it for the love of it

Bob Lorrimer
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Bob Lorrimer » Sat Mar 21, 2015 9:58 pm

Thank-you TIM!

And, HOWARD for your well considered and thoughtful appraisal of my film.

I look forward to seeing you all in Sittingbourne.

Bob

Jill Lampert
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by Jill Lampert » Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:21 pm

Like you, Tim, I feel a little guilty about my joy. My head is in the clouds. I broke through to my first 5***** award with my "The Patient Fisherman" and I am also delighted with a 4**** rating for "Space Invasion".

See you all at Sittingbourne.

Jill

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John Roberts
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by John Roberts » Sun Mar 22, 2015 2:56 pm

TimStannard wrote:
Bob Lorrimer wrote: I am pleased to report that I have hit Gold or rather DIAMOND this year with my unconventional comedy "WRITER's BLOCK."
All I can say is "About bloody time!"
+1 for that! Welcome to 'The Diamond Club' Bob! :D

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TimStannard
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Re: BIAFF 2015 entries

Post by TimStannard » Sun Mar 22, 2015 5:55 pm

Jill, you didn't mention to me that you'd got a 4**** to sit alongside your 5! Well done.
Tim
Proud to be an amateur film maker - I do it for the love of it

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