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Mo & Friese Children's Short Film Festival
by Becky Tan

Parallel to the IKFF was the children’s festival Mo&Friese KinderKurzFilmFestival (Children’s Short Film Festival). There were 74 films from 26 countries for small children to teenagers to everyone in between. There was an opportunity to be on the jury, as well as report as a film journalist. There were film workshops to learn about filmmaking and to talk about films. The trailer was especially brilliant: an animated version of frolicsome creatures living in the Elbe River.

My first showing was on a beautiful summer Saturday morning at 11 o’clock, and, in spite of the gorgeous weather, nine kids, four mothers, and two older girls still made their way into the cinema. In the Turkish film Ice Cream, the ice cream man comes; the kids surround him to buy his goodies but one child seems to be isolated from the group. The Fish and I is about a blind man and his gold fish which must be rescued – a hard job for someone who can’t see. Director Babak Habibiar from Iran said that the man only pretends to be blind. It took four people and one fish to make the film.  My favorite children’s short film was Giovanni and the Water Ballet, a documentary about Giovanni, who auditions to participate in a water ballet competition. He is the only boy in a swimming pool full of girls. He doesn’t mind being the first boy on an all-girl team and is deaf to catcalls from his friends for even thinking about it. By Astrid Bussnik from the Netherlands.

The main prizes for Mo&Friese children’s short film festival were:
--The Friese prize of 1250 euros to: Porosenok, Nyanya (Piglet Babysitter) by Natalya Berezovaya, Russia (jury members aged 8-10)
--The Mo prize of 1250 euros to: Nieuw by Eefje Blankevoort, Netherlands (jury members aged 10-13)
The Gib mir Fünf, Geolino pirze of 300 euros to: Ausser Atem , by Paula Fabian, Germany (jury members aged 8-13)
The FreiStil prize of 1000 euros to: Rodløs (Eigensinnig‹) by Kira Richards Hansen, Denmark (jury members aged 15-17)