The Detroit Windsor International Film Festival hosted the third annual DWIFF 48-hour film challenge and screened the winners on June 27. Teams of filmmakers rushed out into Detroit to begin filming on June 11, with some specific guidelines set in place.
Each film had to have an overlying theme and included some specific direction given out by the DWIFF director. This year the film had to include the line of dialogue “I wanted to help, but then I remembered it was for you” and had to include a sound-bite of a person yelping. Even with these givens, the films varied dramatically. With the teams ranging from two to 38 people, the creativity flowed.
*"Walk Off" – Team Group Therapy* (Winner of the DWIFF Film Challenge Honorable Mention)
A teacher’s assistant cancels class to relieve some stress by reliving a baseball game from his past. It’s short, cut well and doesn’t spoil the audience’s perception of the characters by keeping it pure.
*"You" – Team Wing It* (3rd place)
“You” is a sentimental journey of discovery between an unemployed guitarist and a lost dog. They walk together, eat together, play together and live together. The entire film has a calming allure that feels genuine and realistic, while pinpointing on sentimental. Team Wing It consisted of only two people.
*"Fracture" – Team Gillissie* (2nd place)
“Fracture” is an interesting time travel/alternate universe movie about two brothers and a car accident. One brother drives the other to school and while the second is working on a project in the car, the first drives into a ditch and the second brother dies. The first brother wakes up the previous morning by a fountain, and recalls to the brother what happened. They go through the same motions until the first brother refuses to drive the second to school, convinced he won’t die that way. His mother drives him, they get hit by a car, and the brother dies. The whole film is surreal and powerful with a really creepy vibe.
*"Fall of a Sparrow" – Scallywag Entertainment* (1st place)
“Sparrow” is a tortured story of a pregnant drug user who overdoses and about the specific consequences of her death. Her brother goes to tell her favorite elementary school teacher, a minister, she has passed. The father breaks down divulging how special she was to him. Eventually he tells the brother he molested his sister when they were young, which turns out to be the reason she became addicted to drugs. The minister then has a heart attack and dies in front of the brother, who refuses to help. The short is drama at its finest. It’s gripping, horrifying and yet grounded in reality. This was Scallywag’s first ever film project and put them on the map
*"Last Call" – Team Jewel*
“Last Call” is a touching journey of a man who’s lost his wife and keeps getting phone calls where no one picks up. He’s trying to cope with her loss or at least to come to terms with his own. The camera constantly comes in and out of focus which really distorts what’s really happening, turning the film from concrete ideas into a more surreal experience.