ShoutOUT! : Singpore Indie Documentary Fest starts today!

The Singapore International Documentary Film Festival is the first dedicated documentary film festival in Singapore and will feature both Singapore and international documentary features and shorts. Now in its 4th year, the 2011 edition features more honest portrayals of life moving before a camera.

It explores how art speaks louder than violence in an act of resistance (Iara Lee's CULTURES OF RESISTANCE), the meaning of motherhood in today's world (Natalie Haziza's LULLABY), emerging musical trends challenging cultural identities (Omar Majeed's TAQWACORE: THE BIRTH OF PUNK ISLAM, Alexander Dluzak and Carsten Piefke's DRAGONSTYLE: HIP HOP IN CHINA), and the perils of global and economic change (Mike Hannon's RATS ISLAND, Bernard Kristianto's AROUND THE SEA).

Through Singapore shorts, we come face to face with empty spaces telling tragic stories (Tan Pin Pin's THE IMPOSSIBILITY OF KNOWING), the well-known taxi driver character (Afiq Omar's COMFORT), and the lesser-known hush hush world of a sex worker (Tan Jiahui's JOJO).We will also explore why documentaries are not often made in Singapore, challenges faced, difficulties grappled with portraying a slice of life. Why is such an important genre rarely touched upon, and what do the young filmmakers today have to say.

These times are changing, and we need more than just fiction, to realize and not just to escape. To explore and learn, to wonder and cherish, to discover and remember, and a documentary will give you exactly that.

Singapore works featured:

Singapore, 2011
Dur: 14 min
Rating: PG
This short film takes a glimpse into one of the last steam trains still in use today, in a nearby town not far from Manzhouli in China. Now, the fully finctional industrial relic
faces a replacement by the efficient, yet characterless diesel engine. With it, all imagery of a simple hopeful life will make way for promises of travel and modernisation.

Shing is a graphic designer with a love for moving images, travel and stories. This is his second short film and hopefully not his last.
Singapore, 2010
Dur: 12 min
Rating: PG
The Impossibility of Knowing attempts to use the video camera to capture the aura of a space that has experienced trauma. Using a list of places which she has made, the director found out about where accidents had happened and filmed them. But who can see this aura, of troubled spaces around us? The Impossibility of Knowing was commissioned by the DMZ Korean International Film Festival.

Tan Pin Pin is an award-winning Singaporean film director. Known for her insightful films about Singapore, her works are critical and commercial successes, having screened in Berlin, Cinema du Reel, Pusan, and Rotterdam, to name a few. Her film, Singapore GaGa was voted the Best Film 2006 by Straits Times, and was the first independent documentary to have had a sold out 7 week screening. Her films are represented by Objectifs Films.

Singapore, 2011
Dur: 13 min
Rating: TBA
A short documentary done in two parts: the director’s exploration of Geylang, at the infamous prostitution alleyways, and a ‘date’ with Jojo, one of the sex workers. The documentary is done guerilla style, to get the audience involved in the director’s adventure, seeing as much as he did.

Tan Jiahui is a student filmmaker, having done a number of shorts and experimental films, with a keen passion to explore sensitive issues and topics on film.

Singapore, 2011
Dur: 11 min
Rating: TBA
‘Roots’ is a short documentary about Sean and Adrian, two culturally diverse individuals, whom despite being born in China and Mexico respectively, have a love for a country other than their own. Through them, we gain a better understanding of the importance of knowing and appreciating one’s roots.

Rachel Aubrie Yap Ziyan is a student from Ngee Ann Polytechnic, taking her diploma in Film, Sound and Video.

Singapore, 2010
Dur: 19 min
Rating: NC16
Post-Love explores the taboo of elderly romance and sexuality in Singapore, where traditional mindsets still hold fort over the older generation. These perspectives come together to form a beautiful kaleidoscope of the unspoken thoughts, and broken dreams of a generation, who has reached the age at which its needs and wants are forgotten.

Amanda and Xi Jie are childhood friends and produced Post-Love as their final year project at the Nanyang Technological University, Wee Kim Wee School of Communications under the mentorship of Nikki Draper.

Singapore, 2011 Dur: 22 min
Rating: TBA
Comfort is a personal journey to discover the psyche of the director’s father and the nature of his job. The director explores the trials and tribulations that his father faces on a daily basis, including aspirations for his family's future and for himself .

Currently pursuing a degree in visual communication in Nanyang Technological University, Afiq’s work revolves around the idea of limits, often challenging and provoking social boundaries in the environment that surrounds him. Comfort was recently selected for the 8th Singapore Short Cuts.

For more information, check out the festival website:
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