Discover free films for watching, discussing and exploring filmmaking.
We're pleased to announce that our Film of the Month winner for November 2017 is the hard-hitting Agatha, made by Brandon and Danielle, both aged 15.
Engaging for viewers aged 14+, Agatha is a darkly complex tale of family, homelessness, mental health and abuse. Emotionally raw, and even frightening in places, Agatha may not be an easy watch, dealing as it does with very mature themes, but it's a supremely well made film.
Wow! A challenging and heart-wrenching topic, and a tour de force of camera work, editing and visual effects. Very impressive.Film of the Month judge on 'Agatha'
We got in touch with Brandon to ask him more about Agatha.
When I first found out that I had won the Film of the Month competition I was really proud of myself but didn't really know what to think, as it was such a shock! Although as soon as I did find out, I did start telling everyone.
I started making films when I was about 7 or 8 on my mum's old phone (so around 8 years ago) and ever since then it's been a hobby as well as the beginning of a career for me. On the VFX side of things, it was something I started adding as my film ideas began getting even more ambitious. To learn I just self-taught myself by thinking of what I wanted to do and then searching the internet for how to do it!
The film is made by you and Danielle; did you each focus on different aspects of the film, or were you both making 50/50 decisions about everything?
When me and Danielle were working together it was mainly me doing all the film side of things, as she's never really had much of an experience in it. However, from the beginning, the general idea of the film was brought to me by Danielle, so when I was writing the film, I kept in contact with her so I could get a second opinion on what I was writing, due to making so many changes to her original idea. As well as this, we did come up with the locations, costumes and props together, and both divided the extremely high budget (of £5...) to purchase everything we needed!
Agatha has two very dynamic aspects to it: sound design and filming style. Where did you get the idea for these from?
For the sound design and filming, it's just come from me and it's sort of my own style of filmmaking that people could recognise me for. I just used similar framing techniques as to the ones I use in my photography, such as things like leading lines and the rule of thirds. These are basic techniques but without them in mind while shooting, the majority of the film wouldn't be as emotionally impactful as it is now. It's the invisible elements like sound and framing, making you feel a certain way without even realising. These are all things I've learned over time with experience in my filmmaking over the years.
What message would you like people to take from Agatha?
The message from Agatha is sort of a tough one, however in my opinion I think it's more of an insight into things that happen in the world quite a lot, especially to people my age. I think it does also show that there isn't only one way out of a tough situation.
What advice would you give to other young people who want to start making films?
My advice is cliched but it's literally just to work hard, make sure you get your work out there, and listen to other people's opinions, even if they are negative. After everything it will definitely be a huge benefit, even if it's harsh or upsetting. Even after making and winning with Agatha I'm STILL unsure on so many parts of it, and every time I watch it I know so many things I'd like to change, but not necessarily know how to actually change them or how to make them better. This is why I keep asking people for what I could do better, but unfortunately no one ever seems to know!
If you could make Agatha again what would you do differently, and why?
Making Agatha again, I'd definitely invest in some better equipment, like lighting or sliders, as this would've helped set the tone of the film even better, as well as making the emotions a lot stronger.
What are some of your favourite films, and why?
For someone who makes films, I don't actually watch an awful lot of them! Although my favourites are literally every one of Christopher Nolan's films, like Interstellar, Inception and I can't forget about Batman! I love these films because their stories are so powerful, and that's what makes me remember them over all of the others. It's something I see consistently in all of Nolan's films, which is why they're my favourites.
Agatha will now be showcased to over 300,000 film club members online and on the Into Film YouTube channel, and Brandon and Danielle have won a £100 Amazon voucher and a DVD! If you've been inspired by November's winner, find out more about how you can enter our ongoing Film of the Month competition.
If you liked Agatha why not try these related films:
The deadline for the 2018 Into Film Awards is approaching, but there's still time to enter, with great prizes and an unforgettable experience to be had.
Reading time 3 mins
Mind-bending space epic which sees astronaut Cooper attempting to find a solution to the Earth's environmental crisis.
14+ years 162 mins
This guides will show you the basics and give you the inspiration you need to get started in filmmaking.
Viewing 4 of 4 related items.
Into Film Clubs has now moved from filmclub.org to intofilm.org/clubs
If you already run a film club, or are a member of one, then continue below and use your filmclub.org username and password to log in to your film club's new home on intofilm.org.
Ask your film club leader for your club’s code then continue below and click on the Join Here button. Then follow the simple steps and become a film club member.
If you're an educator working with young people aged 5-19 and are considering starting your very own FREE Into Film Club, then continue below to discover more about the wide range of free films and fantastic benefits available to you.