KOTA SAMARAHAN (July 10): The short film ‘Kumbang’ (Bug) won Best Short Film Award under the Open Category during the 19th Mini Film Festival (MFF) and Mini Art Festival (MAF) finale held at La Promenade here last night.
The film was directed by Gwai Lou alongside producers Annabel Tiu and Feisal Azizuddin.
Veteran filmmaker Rashid Salleh, who was also one of the juries, commented that the short film reminded people of the dangers of outside influences on children.
“The child actors were convincing in the roles, and the story itself compelled us to question access to modern technology in this day and age,” he said in a statement by La Promenade.
Under the same category, another film ‘Garek’, directed by Cech Adria with producer Haziqah Azemi were awarded with the Special Jury Award.
Rashid commented that the film deserved the award for its compelling storytelling, great acting and powerful message for the audience to ponder.
Under the Student Category, the Best Short Film went to ‘Where No One Lives’ directed by Li Anne Liew and produced by Cynthia Wang.
According to another jury member Sarbini Hamdan, he said the short film deserved the recognition for its mastery in storytelling that weaved intertwined narratives, captivating audiences and left a lasting impression.
“The film’s thought-provoking theme and engaging characters explore the depths of human emotions, provoking introspection and sparking conversations” Sarbini added.
Juror Nabil Shohimi also praised Li’s interesting way to showcase the life, thoughts and emotions of the three different characters in the film; she called it a short film of characters’ personalities.
In the Cinematography Programme category, the Best Short Film went to ‘Flower of Lot 3A’ directed by Phang Jing Xian and Ding Shu Voon, with Phang also served as its producer.
Under the same category, ‘Busut’ (Mound), directed by Mohammad Anas Mohd Sadon and produced by Suzy Tijan Billy won the Special Jury Award; while ‘Family that Went Ahead, directed by Alif Izzudin and produced by Lee ShanShan won Best Documentary.
Meanwhile, festival director Yow Chong Lee called the 19th MFF x MAF a great experience, adding that the La Promenade by Sarawakian construction specialist Hock Seng Lee (HSL) served as a great venue to host MFF.
“HSL’s events and media team gave us great support. We were able to have four screening rooms, a dining area and received a lot of publicity due to the company’s strong media pull,” he added.
Yow, who is from Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) Faculty of Applied and Creative Arts, thanked all sponsors – including Hoan Gallery, Finas, Goethe Institut, and Japan Foundation.
As such, he said the organisers will begin talks for the festival’s 20th edition the soonest.
“We are mini in scale, (but) big in ambition,” he added.
Opened in 2020 as a community mall located at the Kuching-Samarahan Expressway, La Promenade Mall has established itself as a mall that supports arts by hosting annual exhibits of the Sarawak Arts Society and Alena Murang’s solo show at Hoan Gallery.
HSL also made it a point to purchase arts and crafts from rural communities for display in its beautiful show houses in Samariang Aman and La Promenade, a premium gated community.
For the latest information, visit lapromenademall.com.my or search @LaPromenadeMall on social media platforms.