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What to know: Compelling and deep.
PAPER CUPS is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
Recommended age 10-18
10 minutes
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This short film is compelling and deep, which I like. There is very little dialogue. Most of the action is carried on to the accompaniment of background noises and music. You understand what is going on from the looks on their faces as well as the background music. The subject of the story - dementia - is somewhat sad. However it flows well and has a heartfelt ending. The camera shots are great - from close ups of faces to feet to peering through a fence. At one point, the camera focuses on a cup and then follows the string on the cup, showing the viewer what is happening without words. The structure is very good. It gets very deep and symbolic. Younger audiences may not understand that the grandmother is losing her memory. If you have ever dealt with someone with dementia, you will definitely relate to this. It shows the terror of not knowing where she has wandered off to, of searching for her, her forlorn look when she is lost, the disconnect between the grandson and the grandmother, her joy at making the pigeons all fly away, and the joy of finding her. It's not an easy film to watch, but it has a great message and a lovely ending. It is thought-provoking. The acting is exceptionally good. For a second, I thought the grandma actually has dementia and then I realized that she is acting. I like the music. It is perfect, matching the emotions of the scenes and amplifying your feelings. It gets you very locked in. The effects, the camera, the lighting and sound are all perfect. In the end, she passes and he sits on the hillside, remembering her. Touching. It reminded me of my own experiences with my grandmother who also had dementia. Excellent background music and sounds - very suitable to the action in the film. Great close-ups, sets, locations. The symbology of the paper cups - with the boy and the grandma - is extraordinary. If we could all just find our loved ones at the end of a string. I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18, as well as adults. Reviewed by Leah R., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic and Julie S., KIDS FIRST! Juror.
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This is a film about a boy and his grandma who has dementia.
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