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The annual Singapore International Film Festival is back with a vengeance. With the advancement of digital technology, local films are seeing a reprisal. With low costs and simple to use editing software, it is no wonder that the number of local productions are increasing. With that in mind, this year’s film festival attempts to bring digital and animated films closer to people.

After last year’s experience of sold out tickets, people have learnt to be smarter and are now harnessing the power of technology to book online to avoid disappointment. This year’s film festival further harnesses technology to bring film closer to people via the Internet. Through the introduction of the Asian Digital Film Awards, works of finalists are put on showcase online at 8arts. Originally introduced in 2000, it is back this year to introduce a total of 16 digital /animated films in the digital arena. They are free and are available for viewing at your discretion. Films featured in the competitive and non-competitive sections include foreign films such as Fish don’t Fly (Thailand), only you know what you truly want, reflected in the portrayal of a child longing for a goldfish to only receive one which he does not want. That Is (India) and not forgetting local film entries such as To Abbas.

If digital and animated films are not your cup of tea, you need not worry. This year’s festival covers a diverse spectrum of genres. Converging over 390 films from across the globe, featuring films from countries across Asia (China, Hong Kong, Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, Sri Lanka) to USA, France, Canada, Germany, to name a few. Genres range from art house films to the short films from the Singapore Short Shorts, the local version of the American Short Shorts.

The film festival starts off with Iranian film Kandahar. A film that blurs the boundaries of genres, blending fiction and documentation into a tale of conflict where an Afghan-born journalist after fleeing to Canada, receives news years later of her sister’s plans to attempt suicide. Facing dilemmas of returning to where she had fled. Kandahar challenges social rules, projecting more than just social stigma.

Local movie Talkingcock – The Movie, a spin-off of the popular local website sees the portrayal of Singaporeans in a humorous manner. Plots include loansharks (illegal moneylenders) going online to the local Ah Beng (wannabes) at the coffee shop. The movie is all about fun. Locally produced, Talkingcock sees locals poking fun at themselves.

The boundaries of film have been widened with the use of digital technology and low costs. Budding directors have no excuse to produce that envision. Nor is there an excuse for you to not partake in the film festival. It is after all just a click away.

15th Singapore International Film Festival
Date : April 11th to 27th, 2002
Place : Prince 1 Cinema
Address : #03-00 Shaw towers, 100 Beach road, Singapore 189702
Tel: +65-6296-2929
Fax: +65-6296-9897

Text: Fann ZJ From Npsea Enterprise

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