Thursday, May 20, 2010

Movie Time

I'm a big supporter of the Seattle International Film Festival (SIIF). It's a great 3 weeks of films you may never see anywhere else and there is truly something for everyone. Here is a link to their website.

They do have a Films4Families program with some great movies that kids and adults can enjoy. There are some live action as well as animated films this year including what looks like an "awww" film about a white lion cub called White Lion. (The info for these films is on page 20 of the schedule.)

Additionally of interest, there is a Grease Sing-along which could be big fun for those of you with musically inclined children. Another musical offering is the 1916 classic of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea with ensemble music including the mighty Paramount Theater organ AND author Daniel Handler (aka Lemony Snicket) on the accordion. The other Paramount Theater film is the 1925 silent film Riders of the Purple Sage with music by The Maldives (NW country rock band). The film includes quick-draw cowboys, villains and outlaws, a cattle stampede and an avalanche. (I've attended some silent films with music at the Paramount with my kids when they were younger and it was a fabulous experience.)

They have a FutureWave shorts which are short films by filmmakers 18 and under on Saturday, June 5th. There is also a FutureWave Features as well.

Also, to keep on your radar for next year, are the Youth Juries which are increasingly popular. For the FutureWave films and Films4Families films there are youth juries comprised of 5 students from across Seattle who view these films and then award a Youth Jury Award to their favorite.

And, of course, for the adults, there is Waiting For Superman, about education reform in the U.S. (there are two showings of this; Friday, June 4th and Saturday June 5). I would expect this would get wide release in the U.S. so you will likely get a chance to see it outside the film festival.

SIIF policy for their other films is no babes in arms and the majority of the regular film schedule is not for children (not rated, foreign films, adult material, etc.). Schedules are available at most libraries and many coffee joints and supermarkets. You can buy tickets online, by phone or in person at their box office on the second floor at Pacific Place.

6 comments:

2inSPS said...

Thanks for sharing the SIFF info!

On the subject of movies... How many movies are appropriate to show in high school? My son has seen a lot of movies during class this year in high school. I'm not talking about movies that are related to the subject of study, or class they are shown in, I'm talking about movies shown "just for fun", or allowed as a reward for hard work, or sometimes when there is a sub.

One of my kids teachers lets them watch movies of their choice every Friday.

It seems like a bit much to me.

Are all SPS high schools doing this?

Melissa Westbrook said...

It's interesting because I found that the middle schools tended to do the "fun" movie day much more than in high school. In high school, they showed films relevant to classroom topics.

There was some discussion in middle school about the appropriateness of some of the films. It's not a bad idea to ask your child's teacher early in the year if they will be showing films and how they select them.

Bird said...

You should throw a fit over this.

Kids watching movies of their choice every Friday is fundamentally wrong. Whoever is doing that isn't interested in doing their job. They are robbing kids of their education and need to cut it out or be fired.

My experience as a kid with teachers who showed movies unrelated to the curriculum on regular basis was that they were generally awful. They were doing very little teaching outside of the movie time either.

Can you tell us which school your kid is in?

Patrick said...

Movies for fun every Friday? This is stealing 20% of that class's time.
Unacceptable, in my opinion.

seattle citizen said...

This was hashed out years ago, nationally and in SPS. It is absolutely unacceptable to show a movie unrelated to curriculum, and even if it's related to curriculum there are many considerations: length; is whole movie related to curriculum; how many movies...

In this day and age, there IS a place for video in education. It can be a valuable piece of the pie, and with digital video small snippets can be effectively utilized when integrated into lessons. But a whole period? Even for a related movie (two periods) that's a lot of time. I might suggest ONE full-length movie that is tightly connected per semester, at the most.

If these films are unrelated to curriculum, my understanding is that they need to be cleared by the principal. With alignment, this will be a bigger issue.

seattle citizen said...

And no X-rated movies. Ever!

(WV might disagree, because it suggests copotica, X-rated police movies)