Reeled in by niche filmfests
LOCAL film buffs usually look forward to an eclectic line-up of non-mainstream movies this time of year when the Singapore International Film Festival (SIFF) is held.
But even with this year’s event now pushed to September for the first time, nobody’s complaining. Not when other niche festivals have sprung up and occupied the slot vacated by the SIFF. Three will open next week and all are more than just your standard film festival where you buy a ticket and then sit back and watch a movie for the next two hours.
Each celebrates cinematic excellence in their own unique ways – the European Union Film Festival (EUFF) will entertain while continuing to build and strengthen diplomatic ties between Singapore and the EU; the Asian Buddhist Film Festival (ABFF) plans to channel its profits to various charities; and the Very Short International Film Festival (VSIFF) remains as the only interactive global film event to take place concurrently in various cities around the world.
These three festivals all have had successful runs here before and with the local audience’s burgeoning appetite for non-commerical films, it’s no surprise they’re making a return and are probably here to stay.
One only needs to look at the six sold-out screenings at Singapore Art Museum’s inaugural Southeast Asian Film Festival (which has been running since March 18 and will conclude next weekend) for proof.