Film Festival brings student visions to life

By Chloe Wilhelm - Staff Reporter

The winning entries of Highline's second annual film festival were moving, random, dark, and funny – sometimes all at once.

The Highline Film Festival, which took place on Feb. 14, showed the top four prize-winning films made by students.

Run for the Hills, by Makayla Sandberg, and Fear and (Self-) Loathing in Des Moines, by Antonio Consiglieri, tied for first place, while I've Seen Enough, by Trevor Deaver, and Awakening, by Narscisa Hodges, received third and fourth place.

The prize for first place was $250, while prizes for third and fourth place were $100 and $75.

The entries had to be between two and a half and eight minutes, and had to be centered around this year's theme of transformation.

Highline's Film Studies Department and Multi-Media Program faculty members judged the entries, along with David Shulman, president of the Seattle Film Institute.

The festival was led by Sean Puno, manager of the Multi-Media Program at Highline and one of the judges. He said that the films for this year's festival were creative and diverse.

"We knew we wanted to have conflict in the stories," Puno said. "[These are] really creative stories revolving around the theme of transformation."

The first film that was shown was Narscisa Hodges' Awakening, which centers around how a man's life changes after he loses his wife in a car accident.

"Distracted driving produces tragedy to not only you, but the people around you," Hodges said. "It ripples through the lives of many people."

Trevor Deaver's film I've Seen Enough received third place, and focused on a man's transformation from innocence to insanity by showing only the character's eyes.

"It's really dark," he said.

Deaver said that since "the eyes are the window to the soul," he wanted to focus on how the character changes by looking at that.

He explained that a lot of time was spent on audio production to give clues on what's happening in the film.

Fear and (Self-) Loathing in Des Moines, by Antonio Consiglieri, which tied for first place, is a documentary about his personal experience at Highline, which he dedicated to all DACA recipients.

Consiglieri said that when he first started taking classes, he had difficulty typing and ended up falling behind in his classes. After taking typing and piano classes and practicing, he is now a proficient typist and is about to graduate.

He said that the message of the film is that if you have a struggle, you can overcome it.

Run for the Hills, by Makayla Sandberg, which also tied for first place, was made up of a montage of various clips with a focus on dark humor.

She said that she made the film with the help of her sister Paige, who did all of the acting and music for the film.

"It was a really fun experience…it's something I've always enjoyed doing," Sandberg said.

The festival ended with a Q & A session from audience members, with the filmmakers receiving certificates for their work.

The event provided snacks and beverages for attendees, while prizes such as t-shirts and gift cards for the Highline Bookstore were given throughout the event for answering trivia questions correctly.

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