Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 10 July 2020

8 family-friendly films to stream for free from the Sharjah International Film Festival for Children and Youth

Sharjah's annual film festival has made more than 20 films available to be streamed from its website

'Sadeya left Sultan' is directed by Saudi filmmaker Jawaher Alamri. The Sharjah International Film Festival for Children and Youth
'Sadeya left Sultan' is directed by Saudi filmmaker Jawaher Alamri. The Sharjah International Film Festival for Children and Youth

Sit back and enjoy a selection of international family movies courtesy of the Sharjah International Film Festival for Children and Youth.

While it remains to be seen if the event will return for an eighth time in October, the festival is bringing a range of regional and international films to your screens until the end of the month, through its Our Home Cinema streaming platform.

All you have to do is click on the festival website to gain access to more than 20 titles ranging from features to shorts that are split across three categories: youth films, feature films and family films.

In announcing the initiative, festival director Sheikha Jawaher bint Abdullah Al Qasimi said the all films chosen were screened at the festival in previous years to a great response.

“The amazing uptake of the first batch of movies we made available prompted us to bring in another selection of incredible films targeting all members of the family, especially to enliven their leisure time during the #StayHome regulations currently in place,” she said.

“We are certain that the excellent range of creative works of international directors will keep families entertained and provide inspiration during these challenging times.”

Here are key titles to check out on the festival's website:

Feature films

'The Painting Pool' (Iran, 2013)

This tender Iranian drama won the Best Feature Film prize at the Sharjah International Festival Children and Youth in 2014. It centres on the moving relationship between a set of parents, both of whom are people of determination, and their child. Alongside its Sharjah win, The Painting Pool picked up a number of international prizes including the Lisboa Film Festival Best Actor award for Shahab Hosseini.

'Ranna’s Silence' (Iran, 2015)

Rana's Silence is directed by Behzad Rafiei. WAM
'Ranna's Silence' is directed by Behzad Rafiei. WAM

Another poignant take that did the rounds at international festivals. Ranna's Silence follows a seven-year-old and her pet hen Kakoli who gets a lost in a forest on a stormy night with a hungry jackal in pursuit.

Short films

'Sadeya left Sultan' (Saudi Arabia, 2018)

Directed by Saudi filmmaker Jawaher Alamri, the 30-minute film begins with unemployed and separated father Sultan yearning to see his daughter. Through the use of a puppet, he hatches a plan to meet his child and discovers more about himself in the process.

'Coexistence' (Saudi Arabia, 2018)

Rakan Abdullah stars in Coexistece. Sharjah International Fiilm Festival for Children and Youth
Rakan Abdullah stars in 'Coexistence'. Sharjah International Film Festival for Children and Youth

A small film with an important message. Saudi director Musab Alamri’s 14-minute work looks at the life of two Muslim students who live together in the US. After a day spent watching the football, a situation develops that could fracture their friendship on sectarian grounds.

'Zombriella' (Germany, 2016)

Tired of his nightmares about a zombie, young Miko decides to confront his fears by delving deep into his dreams and finally encountering Zombriella. They strike an unlikely friendship that resonates long after Miko wakes up.

Animation

'Alike' (Spain, 2015)

Spanish director Rafa Cano Mendez's short film is about the power of good parenting. Copi uses his patience and wisdom to teach his son Paste (see what they did there?) the right attitude to approach life’s challenges.

'A Hole' (Mexico, 2016)

This is an allegorical tale by director Maribel Suarez. A young girl becomes intrigued by a hole she spots in a farm and attempts to make it her playmate. Upset at the hole’s lack of response, she walks away in a huff. After a particularly rainy day she returns to find a plant sprouting from the hole. To her delight, she finds the friend she has been searching for.

'You Look Scary' (US, 2015)

You Look Scary tackles our age old fears of visiting the dentist. Sharjah International Film Festival for Children and Youth
'You Look Scary' tackles our age-old fears of visiting the dentist. Sharjah International Film Festival for Children and Youth

A great little film for children and, yes, adults who are scared of getting their teeth checked. You Look Scary follows a jittery alligator nervous about meeting his dentist, a bunny with worries of his own. Directed by Xiya Lan, the film is about our human tendency to exaggerate our own fears.

Updated: May 13, 2020 04:29 PM

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