British Urban Film Festival 2015
Friday 11 September 2015, by
Now in its tenth year, the British Urban Film Festival aims to celebrate and promote independent, urban cinema in the UK. This year BUFF will have free masterclasses (in addition to its usual lineup for all the budding filmmakers hoping to be selected for future festivals) and short films online.
Still Water (2014) isn’t at all urban but brings a bit of fantasy to the festival in a beautifully shot mermaid story. In the future androids aren’t just freeing us from labour, but taking the place of the bottom rung of the working class, being objectified and exploited—yikes!
Turn On (2014) is an interesting exploration of emotional labour and our emotional responses to those that provide us with services. I’m still unsure if I don’t have enough cultural capital to appreciate The Perfect Human (2014) or whether it’s a short which is meant to be appreciated aesthetically but not fully understood. But watching it did make me want a brandy. Neat. Finally, there’s great news for those looking for love on the internet! Online dating isn’t full of people looking for fun and casual sex. I mean, London still is, but as far as the internet is concerned Leap (2014) shows how dating online can operate as a way to let the world in when we try to shut it out. Lastly, Dog (2015) is a fun watch. It starts with the age old story of how any enforcer who breaks the rules inevitably comes to be implicated in any resistance or challenge to authority, with no second chances. Then it turns into the older story of boy meets girl. Of course I was annoyed at the orientalism at work with the main character who speaks broken English (must Asians remain foreigners in British film?), the asexual Chinese action hero and the ’all sex workers are junkies’ thing, but the film did effectively portray the brutality that any free market economy creates.
The British Urban Film Festival runs from 18th - 21st September - tickets and more information: http://www.britishurbanfilmfestival.co.uk/