A Brief Preview: Film Department’s Screening Festival

It’s that time of year again: time for the Film Department’s Screening Festival. This spring’s exhibition features short documentary and narrative pieces made by students in upper-level film classes. I talked with Carson Bloomquist ’18, a Film Studies major and the co-director, writer and producer of a babysitting short horror flick to be shown at the festival.

When asked why I or anyone else should care about his film, Bloomquist explained the parameters of the assignment: to pick an underrepresented or misrepresented theme and represent it positively in a short, 10 minute film. Bloomquist chose the trope of “the woman in a horror movie.”

“I’ve wanted to do something in the vein of Scream: horror slash mystery slash slasher, for a long time,” he said with stars in his eyes, “the babysitting horror trope is my favorite and I love to bend genre.”

Making a film is an exhausting and exacting process, one with which philistines like myself aren’t familiar. Bloomquist explained that his class partnered up and wrote scripts over winter vacation to be ready for January. “It’s been an immense undertaking,” he said, “but ultimately rewarding. It’s satisfying to see something you’ve conceived come to fruition.”

While last semester’s film exhibition featured shorts from introductory and experimental films classes, the upcoming exhibition will feature shorts from both a documentary films class and a class on ideological representation in cinema.

“This screening will apply to a larger demographic simply because of its diversity in genres,” Bloomquist said. “It’s got something for everyone: horror, sci-fi with time travel, comedy, drama, action. You name it. And there’s a lot of playing with genre.”

Playing with genre? I asked ignorantly. Isn’t it better if genres just stay rigidly defined and prohibitive of creative experimentation?

“It gives the ability to have a smaller scope with bigger stakes,” Bloomquist answered thoughtfully, “Quote me on that.”

This spring’s festival promises to showcase the talent of Conn’s film department more than ever before. “The level of advanced production work will be better than years past,” Bloomquist said. “It’ll be one of the best exhibitions we’ve ever had. I think people will be impressed by the quality of work that was produced.” The screening will take place on May 11 at 7 pm in Olin 014.