A friend—a neighbor and a preschool teacher—stopped us in the elevator yesterday and told us that we must go to the Singapore International Children’s Film Festival, curated by Big Eyes, Big Minds and held at The National Gallery of Singapore. And, so we did!
The Festival aims to showcase the best new “high quality, culturally diverse, and value affirming” films for children from around the world. Big Eyes, Big Minds’ vision is to increase media literacy by cultivating film appreciation, increase the knowledge of the craft of filmmaking, and provide a platform for children to screen their own creations.
We screened One, Two, Achoo, a series of shorts for children ages 2 to 6. Octopus (Germany) by Julia Ocker, One, Two, Tree (France) by Yulia Aronova, and Rita and Crocodile: Zoo (Denmark) by Siri Melchior were outstanding. The Preschooler also enjoyed Perfect Piggies (USA) by Sandra Boynton and Achoo! (Japan) by Yuki Hirakawa. Her father and I cared far less for Trude’s Flatmate: Digger (Germany) by Johannes Weiland, Klaus Morschheuser, and Michael Bohnenstingl, a film that relied on “noble savage”/”white savior” tropes, which was rather discomforting. The shorts not in English are both subtitled and voiced-over.
The Festival resumes next weekend, and there are offerings for every age group. Buy tickets here. Go, go, go and vote for your favorite! The filmmakers who receive the most votes will receive a prize from Singapore’s children.