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FLEFF Intern Voices

The Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival from the interns' point of view

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Posted by Alisha Tamarchenko at 11:40PM

Wow. I need a second to catch my breath. FLEFF 2019 is actually over.

I left Cinemapolis around 8pm after seeing Mr. Soul! on Sunday. Two other FLEFF interns, a friend and I had just seen the film and headed to Sammy’s Pizza for some food after an exhausting but exhilarating day of films and discussions.

That has been the perfect way to describe FLEFF – exhausting but exhilarating.

As we walked and talked about the amazing film we just saw, it hit us; this was it! That was the last event! FLEFF was over! We couldn’t help but feel down. I flurry of “what if’s” filled my head; what if I had gone to that event instead of another, I heard the discussion was good; what if I’d talked to this guest longer; what if, what if, what if…

But I eventually put my “what if’s” aside and reassured myself that I really had made the most of this years’ festival. I truly did it all and engaged with as much as I could take in.

As I sat around a table in Sammy’s surrounding by great people and friends while devouring chicken nuggets, I reflected back to my favorite moments of the week.

I loved the Friday FLEFF lab. The conference room was overfilled, all the chairs were full, I sat on top of a short shelf with a few other unfortunate students who came too late to claim a comfy seat. But I loved the energy that came with that. The room was abuzz with wide-eyed students, stirring with excitement, peering over each other to hear the filmmakers in the front clearer.

The filmmakers discussed intention, responsibility, bias, academia and activism among much more. I listening along with the rest of the students, taking in every word and sometimes jotting down in my notebook thoughts that really resonated.

This session along with any other conversation I had with the guests really demystified filmmaking and a film career for me. What really intrigued me was the heterogeneity of routes that led the guests to where they are now – it really isn’t as simple and straight-forward as many might present it to be.

Furthermore, the films were incredible. The films that I didn’t agree with or had conflicting thoughts on; even more so. The discussions and conversations that arose were though-provoking and inspiring.

I’m so happy I was able to attend a couple of the Red’s after parties and would recommend for everyone to do the same in years to come. After watching stimulating and captivating films I found it incredibly valuable to deconstruct and analyze them with the brilliant minds of professors, guests and fellows who attended the same screenings.

FLEFF 2019 was truly incredible and I’m already marking my calendar for 2020.

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