Wklds’fllmchallellouisaJMtNflIe west coast of Scotland 1 ‘l think children come to a film festival because they like frlm (well most of them) and want to know how they make them and fiddle about with buttons and gizmos and watch some films and try making them. I know i would surely go.’ Caroline from Royal High Primary School is one of the many children involved in the Young People's Film Festival running from 19—26 August. It has a busy line-up, including screenings. live events, discussions, workshops and

exhibitions, all organised with children‘s participation.

‘What we're interested in is hearing what they want.‘ says Shona Wood. organiser of the Festival. Since April,

children from seven different Lothian

schools have been involved in organising the event and answering questions like, What is a film? Why should we have a film festival? and What would make children come to one?

One of their regular demands is more films made by children. Their perception of a good film is fundamentally different from an adult’s, and they believe that a kid in the director's chair will give them want they want. So, as well as trying their hand at filmmaking, participants in the Festival get to meet young filmmakers working with the Children's Film Unit. The CFU produces a film every summer with the help of two or three professionals. The rest of the jobs are taken on by the ‘children'. aged between ten and eighteen, who all get involved at different levels. from acting to scriptwriting. The Festival hopes to initiate a campaign for something similar in Scotland: the funding ofa production company here, where film can be made by and for young people. (Gabe Stewart)

Young People '5 Film Festival.

Filmhouse/Grindlay Court. 19—26 Aug.

IEIIIIII 5 Sensor s sensibility

‘I‘here’s usually a big splash in the press when a film that has been banned in a repressive culture - recent Chinese movies come to mind makes it in a smuggled-out print onto European film festival screens. When it’s a British movie that’s stopped from being shown In UK cinemas, then there may be vague mumblings about ‘censorship’ but, as sex and violence are usually at the root of this supposed evil, few lournalists are as willing to embrace the cause as they would if a more political ban were in place. Except that, when the British Board of Film Classification and its soon-to-retlre head James Fennan refuse to certificate a film, political decisions are being made at some basic level. What was so ‘danaging’ about Shopping that it was refused a video release? Its glossy violence or its anti-establishment attitude?

The latest film to ruffle the BBFc’s feathers is Boy Meets Girl. Torture, bondage, murder - yes, these are staple elements of the film, which turns the tables on a cocky phllanderer when his easy pick-up drugs him and precedes to abuse him for weeks on end. However, its use of lntercuttlng captions and reversed power positions aggressiver questions standard filrn values; unfortunately Ferman has taken a personal affront to the subversive nature of this approach, accepting it



only on a shallow exploitation level. One man’s viewpoint, but enough to ensure no video release, cinema release only with substantial cuts, and the loss of the distributor who had previously backed the project. ‘Ironlcaliy, Boy Meets Girl is actually addressing the problems of violence on both the big screen and the TV screen by confronting violence and the audience head-on,’ argues the film’s cmproducer, chris Bead. ‘Desplte the problems which surround the issues of violence on screen and in our society today, this is a film which is beginning to get critical acclaim, and as it travels to more festivals, the more acclaim It will receive. Hopefully, the prestige of the screenings at festivals such as Edinburgh will cause James Fennan to realise that Boy Meets Girl Is a film of worth.’ (Alan Morrison) Boy Meets Girl (full uncut version), Canon 1, Sun 21,10.45pm.

I Whispering Pages The novels of Dostoevsky have provided the basis for several films over the years. but few as atmospherically beautiful as Aleksandr Sokurov‘s latest work. Inspired by Crime And Punishment and other Russian novels of the 19th century, the film has a slow, at times almost stationary, pace that allows the viewer to take in the flickering shadows and subtle compositional distortions that fill the frame. The dialogue is few and far between. but the ideas contained within are vast. This is pure visual poetry. (AM)

Whispering Pages. Cameo I . Fri 19, 6.15pm and Cameo I . Fri 26, 8.30pm.

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.. ' “an . ._...- c: , . .13 I Shallow Grave Set in Edinburgh, shot in Scotland, Danny Boyle's first feature comes as a welcome breath of fresh air, a genre movie that is both scary and fun. Thtee yuppies find an ideal candidate for a new flatmate, but a few days later discover him dead from an overdose, with a suitcase full of used readies under his bed. Faced with an instant moral dilemma. they decide to keep the cash and dispose ofthe body in a particularly gn'sly way. Christopher Eccleston is impressive as the withdrawn chartered accountant turned psycho; likewise Ewan McGregor as the obnoxious, self-obsessed hack. Kerry Fox‘s character is seriously under-developed, but the film as a whole is proof that it is possible to make a good feature with commercial appeal on home ground. (Lila Rawlings) Shallow Grave, MGM. Fri [9, 11pm and Filmhouse 1. Sun 2]. 1.45pm.

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I Tales From A Hard City For years. the Edinburgh Film Festival has prided itself on showing the best documentary work from around the world. and this award- winning British work is another exceptional example of factual filmmaking. Set in post-industrial Sheffield. it follows four of the city‘s inhabitants the Dirty Dancer, the Hustler, the Thief and the Media Mogul as they try to adapt their big dreams to a very downbeat landscape. Winner of the Grand Prix at the Marseilles International Documentary Film Festival, its subjects are remarkable in their media-saturated desire to perform for the camera. (AM)

Tales Front A Hard City. F ilmhouse 1, Mon 22, 4.30pm.

72 The List 19—25 August 1994