A group of pupils from the Severo Ochoa Institute in Seville have chosen to programme Stubborn (Une histoire américaine), by Armel Hostiou, in the New Waves Section of the SEFF. With ages ranging from 14 to 16, the pupils are the first to participate in this new activity in which, after several work sessions, they have chosen a film whose promotion they will also organize during the festival. In addition, they will present one of the film’s screenings and moderate a discussion with the director. The aim of the proposal is to familiarize young people with auteurist cinema and also to offer them the experience of getting to know the festival from the inside. This initiative, part of the SEFF’s commitment to creating new audiences and to forming critical viewpoints, is being developed within the European project Moving Cinema –an initiative by A Bao A Qu, also responsible for Cine en curso.
The film follows the adventures of a Frenchman in New York, where he has gone to recover a relationship. The students mentioned in particular the film’s way of showing everything we are capable of doing for love. “Those actions are marked by obsession and originality and succeed in getting the spectator to empathise with the leading character”, they state. The unpredictable nature of Hostiou’s story and its ending, which “leaves the spectator expectant”, are other values that convinced them. “The director portrays the extremes very well and also the mixture of humour and drama, with spontaneous changes in the obsessive behaviour of the protagonist who isolates himself from his surroundings and from the people who are trying to help him”; they explain.
Hostiou took a previous short film as the basis for this comedy starring Vincent Macaigne (La chica del 14 de julio, Eden and Two Friends, the latter in competition at the SEFF) and with photography by Mauro Herce from Barcelona. The film, shot with a naturalness that includes some improvised scenes, shows the protagonist on his New York adventure, filled with sleepless nights and unexpected places.
The aim of Moving Cinema fits with the character of the SEFF, which wants the festival experience to become part of young people’s lives, beyond the school setting, to help create new critical spectators. The teachers who accompany the pupils on this activity have received previous training from the A Bao A Qu /Cine en curso team to give them the tools so they can organise various assignments associated with the viewing of the films.
A Bao A Qu is a non-profit making cultural association that develops projects which link artistic creation and education. One notable project is the Cine en curso educational programme which has been running for over ten years with teachers and filmmakers in schools and institutes in Catalonia, and in recent years has extended to Galicia, Madrid, Argentina and Chile. In 2014 A Bao A Qu led the setting up of the Moving Cinema Project, with participation by Meno Avilys (Lithuania) and Os Filhos de Lumière (Portugal) and, since 2015, the Cinémathèque Française (France) and the Centre for the Moving Image in Edinburgh (Great Britain). Its development in Spain is supported by organisations such as the Festival de Cinema d’Autor, l’Alternativa, Filmin, the Filmoteca Española y, since this year, the SEFF, which has been chosen to carry out this pilot experience of creating a group of young programmers at a festival. The aim of this European programme is to draw up and define methodologies, strategies and tools that will facilitate access by young people to European cinema, stimulating their interest and creating independent habits as spectators.
The A Bao A Qu/Cine en curso team, consisting of Núria Aidelman, Laia Colell, Laia Montaña and Agnès Sebastià, is also developing other projects such as Fotografía en curso and Creadores en RESiDENCiA in schools in Barcelona and is collaborating with important museums and cultural associations in our country: CCCB, CGAI, Filmoteca de Catalunya, Foto Colectania, MACBA, MNCARS, Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya and La Virreina Centre de la Imatge.