In last month’s post I discussed the three biggest events I was preparing to face; the job hunt, my dissertation and the Edinburgh International Film Festival. With June came one of those ventures – the most exciting one. June has been all about the film festival. I began the month working at home and working on my University work but was also preparing for two weeks at the world’s oldest film festival. In its 68th year, the festival consisted of 156 films from 47 different countries. I managed to see 30 of them. I saw films from the following 11 countries: The UK, the USA, France, Germany, Norway, Finland, Japan, Vietnam, Australia, the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Korea. I experienced a real mix of genre, style and subject and was amazed at the high quality and diversity of the overall programme. There were only one or two films I really did not like; the majority were very good. Click here for my round up of the festival and links to all 30 review. My greatest achievement at the festival was securing my first professional interview, with director and writer Jeff Baena. It was a daunting experience but I prepared thoroughly and felt that my questions were insightful and more interesting than just “what was it like making this film?” I am happy with the interview and can’t wait to post it in September before the film’s release. This was a big moment for me and made up for all of the hardships and struggles that have come hand and hand with this year. The film festival has challenged me to develop my writing and my dedication to it. I have accomplished what I set out to do and am happy with my coverage of the festival.
It was also a blessing to have so much free time to wander the city. It reminded me of my first week in Edinburgh last September and those joyous, albeit slightly lonely, few days I had to explore the cinemas and surroundings before I started my studies and my job. Strolling around Edinburgh, in the glory of its golden summer evenings, has given me time to reflect on what has been a really challenging year. I’ll save my real reflections for my piece in August but it has been nice to look back on my accomplishments and to put everything into perspective. Now that the festival is over and I return to normality, I also move my focus back to my dissertation. I am happy with the progress I am making with it and am doing my best not to get overly stressed or panicked about it. I am going to do my best and that’s all I can do. Life’s too short to fret over work that doesn’t define me. I’m enjoying the writing process although I am finding the academic restrictions very irritating. I imagine this will be even harder to endure after two weeks of writing freely and constantly about some really inspiring cinema. July looks set to be maybe my busiest month yet. I’ll be travelling home to work for the first week before dedicating all my time to my dissertation for the rest of the month. Wish me luck.
Thanks for reading and let’s all keep supporting our beloved film industry.