In Maribor’s Cinema Udarnik, the award ceremony concluded the 4th International Children and Youth Animated Film Festival ENIMATION little elephant. The international jury – Croatian film critic and publicist Diana Nenadić, Slovenian art pedagogue Maja Škorjanc, and professor at Secondary School for Design Maribor Dejan Paska – chose the winners of the festival’s competition programme.
The main prize of 150 eur is awarded by Foundation Sonda and KID Kibla, and was won by the film Mason Phelps Private Eye, created by a group of Irish youth. In the MINI category (up to 10 years) the winner is the Belgian film Abracadafart, created by a group of seven children; in the MIDI category (11 to 14 years) a film created by 22 Polish creators About a Man and His Devil Partner; and in the MAXI category the film Fear, created by Črt Mate, Andraž Mohar, Domen Gorjup, Natalija Kosmaš, and Lene Lekše.
For the conclusion, festival’s executive producer Rene Puhar stated, “The increasing number of animated films applying to our festival means that the selection is harsher and the programme’s quality is better. At the festival, we could see numerous top-notch animated films, making the jury’s work hard. We are also pleased to see more visitors at the festival compared to previous years. In the next edition of the festival, in October 2015, the programme and the concept will broaden – we will also include fiction and documentary films made by children and youth.”
Željko Milovanovič, the development producer of the ENIMATION platform, added, “Already in next year, the films that will make it into the ENIMATION little elephant competition programme will also be running for the award of the Youth Cinema Network – the international network children and youth film festivals.”
The jury wrote about their selection:
The film excelled in its dramaturgy, visual design, and production. The chosen animation technique with some artistic solutions successfully presents the characters and their emotional responses. The chosen soundscape and the use of silhouettes for presenting people transfer the viewer into the imaginary space where somewhat different rules apply – the rules of children. What impressed the jury was the children’s directness about something (farting in company) that is not tolerable in most cultures and their tolerance towards it.
Midi: A Man and His Devil Partner
Man already proved at numerous occasions that he/she can outwit the devil. In this artistically convincing journey we were fascinated by the dynamics of the tale – not merely of the narrator, that only confirms the dynamics – but mainly of the artistic and technical solutions of building up the scenes, and the changes between them. The chosen technique emphasizes the contrast between the good (man) and the evil (devil).
Already in the opening credit, the film shows that man is made up of fear. Through thoughtful animation solutions, and simple aesthetic and clean graphics, the film compensates or the lack of narration. Furthermore, it is the lack of narration that leaves the viewers to one’s own interpretation – each of us has their own fears. The abstract illustrates the human fear, which in itself is abstract. The appropriate selection of the soundscape, the contrasts, and the play of shadows all round up the compactness of the animation.
Winner: Mason Phelps Private Eye
In the classical criminal story – stylistically flirting with film noir – the authors successfully included the problems of ecology and recycling. A witty story with a solid dramaturgic bow does not merely attract us with the carefully chosen details, but also succeeds in showing the emotional states of the characters. Filmic framing, original music, and the unobtrusive soundscape help to further strengthen the story. Carefully selected sequence of various shots gives the story the proper rhythm, suggested by the genre.
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