LCHS film festival hits the big screen

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June 18, 2015 8:15 AM

Alex Chippin Photo Sarah Thorpe (far left, front row) and Donovan Maess (far left, second row) watched their short films on the big screen at May Cinema 6 on Tuesday with fellow classmates. Front row, from left, Thorpe and Tori Banyton, and Taylor Higdon and Taylor Musgrave were also recognized for their second and third-place finishes, respectively, in the WorkSafe Saskatchewan youth video contest. - Alex Chippin Photo

Students had their popcorn ready on Tuesday afternoon as Lloydminster Comprehensive High School (LCHS) held its own short film festival at May Cinema 6.

“The program at the high school has been around 10 years or a little bit more, but (it’s the) first time we’ve ever been to the May theatres so it’s a really big deal and we’re quite excited about it,” said LCHS communication media teacher Alan Griffith.

Throughout the semester, students in the Grade 12 communication media class produced short films between 25 and 30 minutes. Like professional filmmakers, they were tasked with creating storyboards, writing scripts, filming, editing and adding special effects to their films.

On Tuesday, they headed to the theatre, where their classmates and other students in the Grade 10 and 11 communication media classes took in the films. The theatre was also open to the public.

“It’s really cool because we’re used to showing our films in the classroom with a small audience so it’s really neat that there will be lots of people here and on the big screen,” said Sarah Thorpe, who produced the short film Little Red.

“My movie is about a couple who get into a car accident and the character Leo passes away in the car accident. It’s about the character Elle and how she grieves after it all happens,” Thorpe said.

Other films on display carried a slightly darker theme.

“It’s about a guy who lives a pretty normal life and then he wakes up one morning and he is completely alone on the earth,” said Donovan Maess, producer of Alone. “He has to go through the struggles of being alone and trying to deal with that. He starts going crazy and doing some pretty weird stuff.”

Although the movie critics remained absent on Tuesday, films did go through some form of critiquing process. Students handed in a rough cut of their films partway through the semester and Griffith suggested possible improvements to each film before the final cuts were submitted. The end result, Griffith says, was some of the best work he’s seen at LCHS.

See “Film,” Page 15

“Every year that I’ve done this, the quality of the films continues to go up. The four films that are showing this year and four of the best films that have ever been made in the program.”

Griffith says he was approached by a student that also works at the cinema part-time about the possibility of showing the films on the big screen. After the theatre graciously accepted the request, Griffith hopes to make the school’s film festival a yearly tradition.

“It’s a very thrilling way for students to end off their three years in communication media,” he said. “You see all their hard work put up on the big screen.”

Also on Tuesday, WorkSafe Saskatchewan presented awards to four class members prior to kicking off the film festival.

Thorpe and classmate Tori Banyton were recognized for their second-place finish in the Saskatchewan youth video contest, while Taylor Musgrave and Taylor Higdon received third-place acknowledgement. Both duos worked on a two to three-minute video that followed the workplace safety theme.

According to WorkSafe Saskatchewan, second-place team receives $700 total and an additional $1,000 for the school’s media program. Third-place receives $300 total and another $500 for the school.

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