The MIFF Schools Youth Jury returns in 2021 after its successful inaugural run last year. The jury is a panel of three young filmmakers who deliberate on which title from the MIFF Schools program they deem the best.
In partnership with ACMI, the youth jury was selected from the best and brightest among Top Screen 2021’s participants. This year, the jury includes all three winners of the Top Screen Jury Prize: two animators who have taken vastly different approaches to story and style, and the director of the wittily satirical winning film, Magnum Opus.
Outstanding film as chosen by the jurors
It’s a Summer Film!
Director: Sōshi Matsumoto
Suitability: Ages 10+
Sōshi Matsumoto’s beautiful depiction of Japan and the culture of samurai and romance films garnered our attention due to its array of fun characters, natural dialogue and steady pacing. The combination of a fully realised and detailed setting and great comedic tonal balance results in an engagingly meta narrative that entertains throughout its entire runtime. With beautiful cinematography reminiscent of faded poster print and colours mimicking the hues of summer, this film offers wonderful commentary on the modern world with a futuristic sci-fi twist.
The 2021 youth jury
Jamie Miller is a nature enthusiast and aspiring filmmaker who forged a love of film throughout his childhood. A budding stop-motion animator, he made his first forays into the world of short film in his Year 11 and 12 Media class at school. His Year 12 Media film, Magnum Opus – a self-referential mockumentary about a budding director – took home the top prize at Top Screen 2021. He is currently in his first year of studying a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Melbourne, which he hopes will provide him some sense of direction. Ultimately, he is keen to create things that mean something to himself and others.
Anise Perry was the runner-up for 2021’s Top Screen Jury Prize. As an avid media consumer, she incorporates the ideas and aesthetics that inspire her art; Japanese animators Atsushi Wada, Q-rais and Kōji Yamamura had a direct influence on her winning film Just Peachy. She is currently enrolled in RMIT’s Diploma of Visual Arts, and hopes to pursue illustration and possibly animation in the future.
Miki Flett is a high school student in her final year, and further pursues Screen and Media at Box Hill TAFE. She was exceedingly happy to have her animated short film Space Cadet be awarded second runner-up by the 2021 Top Screen jury. Miki’s aim for the animated short was to depict an authentic narrative through a whimsical, child-like lens. She continues to explore her passion for storytelling, with the intention of one day pursuing a career in illustration and animation.