-By Luke McGuire
The New York City Teen Film Festival’s annual screening occurred on October 29th at Cinema Village on East 12th Street, marking the festival’s seventh annual event since its inception in 2016. The festival was a success, and attendees had the opportunity to see the works of some of the best young filmmakers in the New York area. Of the 300 submissions, six awards were distributed among 22 nominated films, all reviewed by a panel of professional filmmakers. This year’s winners were selected by Lisa Hurwitz, who is known for her work on the film The Automat, renowned Mexican filmmaker Javier Montes D’Arce, and Emily Kunstler, a West Village native who co-runs the documentary production company “Off-Center.”
The Unofficial Documentary, portraying a sophisticated and hysterical lampoon of the modern celebrity documentary, directed by Daniel Smedile, won the award for Best Documentary. Filmmaker Jaden Moffitt won the award for Best Performances in his thriller-drama Brothers, led by two incredible performances by child actors. However, the short film Mirage, directed by Caleb Reese Paul, was most impressive to the panel of experts. The film won not one, but two awards, including Best in Show and Best Cinematography. It was thrilling, engaging, and utilized expert cinematography. The other winning short films included The Purity by César Medina, which won Best Story for its intricate and intriguing plot, and The Last Knock by Ian Graziano, a gripping horror film which won best Film Editing. Look out for all of these on the NYCTFF’s website!
The NYCTFF continues to make a name for itself as one of the premiere youth film festivals. Its objective is to provide aspiring filmmakers with experience and to promote their work. It is one of the few youth teen film festivals that does not require an entry fee, and is a non-profit operating solely from charitable donations. The submission deadline for the 2023 festival is at the end of July, so whether you are submitting a film or just want to see the show, be sure to look out for the NYCTFF next year!
Luke McGuire is an organizer of the New York City Teen Film Festival.
Photo courtesy of Luke McGuire.