Well I'm just back from this glorious festival - the brainchild of Erik Goulet, a man possessed of great energy, enthusiasm and knowledge, and possibly a man possessed....these things take so much work to organise and he has done it with a very small crew, but we had a good few days. It's hard not to enjoy being in Montreal and all that goes with it. The festival was based at Concordia University, in a lovely little theatre. We didn't fill it, but the majority of the audiences came to each screening. Some clutching puppets or drawings which are always a joy to see.
I did my main presentation last friday, with the theme in my head of 'What is Stop Motion', and I did digress with clips of ballet and stage shows and other things, all of which seemed to go down very well. The time raced by and at teh cake and mingle (and oh what a cake - a huge creamy thing with a picture of Shakespeare in full Cymbeline mode on it), there were some great comments. I do seem to be able to get people to think about things.
With the jury, Luc and Pierre who are both currently working at the Film board, we watched four full sessions of stop motion, and got a little stir crazy byt the end but the great were fantastic, and the not so great always woth watching. There were a darn good selection and most of them worked as films, but some were just a good piece of acting with nowhere in particular to go, or there was an interesting technique but not great storytelling. But there was some astonishing acting really...breathtaking. Our jury discussions were pretty thorough....well Erik had made some stunning armatures as prizes. This being a Halloween weekend, it came as little surprise to see a dinosaur sat in the audience, or a lady with a malevolent baby screamign to get out, or even Erik presenting dressed as...well he knew.
So here's a selection of names to watch out for:
Un armour de tele
The twins Girls of Sunset Street (about as disturbing as a film can get)
Helma kicks off
Le Councile Lunatique
Le Soleil de l'Astronome
The artic Circle
Bottle - a film that showed you don't need a big budget to make a moving stunning film.
Out on the Tiles
To have and to hold
Tord and Tord
sorry for not mentioning all the films, but these were exceptional ones.
We also watched a presentation by Patrick Boivin...wow, he manages to get some movement out of very limited puppets. Very impressive.
Yes quite a festival, and great food, great company, and much sharing of a passion that probably boarders into an obsession with some of us.