Saturday, March 21, 2015

Flare: On the Market

This year I am making an effort to attend more events at Flare, which has resulted in me being slightly more sociable than normal. Yesterday's visit, for example, resulted in only one film being viewed, The Falling, which I am not reviewing now, as it has a release date of 24 April. I will, however, write about the event of the film screening.

But, before I went to the film screening, I attended two other events and ran into quite a few familiar faces. It has taken 20 years of London living to experience what everyone seems to say should be true: seeing familiar faces at specific events. Well, it finally happened. Most odd.

Early in the day I visited the Market Place Live, Film London's get-a-film-released-in-90-minutes challenge. There was no actual film production, but rather a panel of industry folk ready to use their experiences to advise on getting a fake film onto screens. So, we had Parkville Pictures producer Cecilia sweating it out, trying to get the BFI and various funders interested in the film Treat Me Like a Lady, a curious beast of trans rom-com and spy caper. I learned quite a bit of industry jargon, from m.g. to P&A, though I never did quite twig what Cecilia meant when she kept saying she had done the whole thing without a "com title" (phon). A bit of demystification would have been helpful to those of us not in the know. Later, I attended a delegates reception and got a bit of info on the terms from financier Laure, who had also been on the panel. I also spoke briefly to Desiree Akhavan, director of Appropriate Behavior, who seems to have dropped anchor in London, at least for a bit.

The evening was capped off by a screening of The Falling and a rather rushed Q&A with director Carol Morley, a shame as the film raises many questions. Not that I had anything on the tip of my tongue, but if I had, it certainly would not have been, "What do you think of the male characters?", a rather loaded enquiry made by, yes, a male audience member. I groaned inwardly. It's interesting men never seem to make these enquiries of films that feature a male-dominated cast, which is to say most films. The Falling is set in a girls' school and, unsurprisingly, most of the cast are female. Missing the point, I would say. Morley was gracious enough about the question and encouraged audience members to start a conversation online, even if they hated the film, which provoked great laughter, as did BFI host Tricia Tuttle's comic swoon, in sympathy with the mass psychogenic illness that the film depicts.

And on that note, I shall leave off for now.

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