Finding Felix Project

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Berlin, Germany
The Finding Felix Project is a work for screen and publication from Katy Kavanaugh, a curator and filmmaker (katykavanaugh.weebly.com). A fellowship from Stanford University and The Freie Universität- Berlin allowed her to return to the Berlin Film Festival's 35 year-old Generation (formerly Kinderfilmfest) to collect evidence of the directive impact that international films seen in childhood can have toward shaping the breadth of a person's view of the world and the decisions they make. This investigation focuses on one eleven year-old film festival-goer whom Kavanaugh met while serving on the Kinderfilmfest's international jury in 2001. Ten years later, Kavanaugh wants to know how a childhood full of international films influenced Felix's life so far. Meanwhile, with help from Media Consultant Tina Toepfel and Gintare Malinauskaite, PhD History at Humboldt Universität, Felix has been found and is now in post-production. To help meet its completion goal, please consider contributing via our fiscal sponsor, Cinefemme.net.

Friday, April 8, 2011

4th Graders at Berlin's JFK Schule respond to THE STRONGEST MAN IN HOLLAND, 2 weeks after seeing it at the Berlinale

Nine and ten year-olds in Karen Wingo's Fourth Grade class at The John F. Kennedy Schule, a public German-English grammar and high school established in the former American sector of Berlin in 1960, watched the Dutch film THE STRONGEST MAN IN HOLLAND (The Netherlands, dir. M. deCloe, 2010) at the Berlinale's Generation section. The class could not stay for the question and answer session following the film but did have a discussion in class the next day. We arranged to interview the class ten days later. You'll see the clarity of their memories some responses to what they liked and didn't like and we got some of the "why's" woven into other responses throughout the 60-minute interview. Teacher Wingo stated that their responses from the day following and ten days later hadn't really changed and she was especially surprised by their memories of the previous year. With two recall events following the screening, THE STRONGEST MAN IN HOLLAND will be well-fixed in their memories.

In addition to the questions covered in this clip, the class talked about their handling of the three languages involved: the films original Dutch dialogue, English subtitles and simultaneous translation (Einsprache) in German. Some said that they switched back and forth, a few picked up a couple Dutch words, another said the she listened to the German because the subtitles were too fast, and one replied simply, "I'm staring at the screen so I might as well read the subtitles." In general, though it might be a bit disturbing for some, most children find that once engrossed in the film, the multiple language treatment seems "as if it was only one language."

The Strongest Man in Holland, www.nlfilm.tv
video Special thanks to Syd Atlas!

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