'Runaway' is December's Film of the Month

15 Feb 2018 in Film of the Month

4 mins
'Runaway' is December's Film of the Month

We're very pleased to announce that our Film of the Month winner for December 2017 is the gritty, contemplative Runaway, made by James from Coleg Sir Gar in Llanelli.

Runaway (Engaging for 14+) is a beautifully-constructed, moody short in which a teenage boy evades the police as he wanders the streets of Llanelli having run away from home - but what of those he's left behind?

An intriguing and well told story that is supported by quality filmmaking. I got a great sense of the characters and was impressed by the acting throughout.

Film of the Month judge on 'Runaway'

We got in touch with James to ask him more about Runaway.

How does it feel to win the Film of the Month competition?

It feels really good. It's great to be a part of the into film community and get involved with the competitions. It inspires me to want to make more and better films.

How long have you been making films, and how did you start?

It's been about a year or two since I started filmmaking. It all started when I was volunteering at my church. I got given a camera to take photos and fell in love with photography. This made me explore shooting film and decide to go study in college.

What made you decide to make a film about the themes in Runaway?

I wanted to write something that related to me, the stories that go on in the real world that we don't hear about. The narrative all comes from a real experience of mine, where I never got to find out the ending. That always played on my mind.

The film is very minimalist: few camera movements, little dialogue or music. Where did these ideas come from?

I didn't want to gloss over the story. The film is with the character and the character only; there is nothing to take the camera's focus away, nothing to communicate with, and nothing to gather any form of escapism.

What message would you like people to take from Runaway?

I would like people to understand that there're stories outside the main headlines. We are all going through something, but understanding the struggle of someone else is something that we normally pass over.

What advice would you give to other young people who want to start making films?

Get creating. If you wait until you have the perfect conditions you'll never shoot. Get out there and make stuff. Your first films will never be your best but you have to start somewhere.

If you could make Runaway again what would you do differently, and why? 

We learned a lot of things on the way. We'd change how it was planned, if anything. The concept was a solid idea I believe. With the time period we had, we just worked with what was in front of us. Being faithful with the small. I would have liked to have more cast, more dialogue, more conflict. But, time was against us, and in the end it worked out pretty well.

What are some of your favourite films, and why?

InceptionInterstellar... anything done by Christopher Nolan really. I love his work and his collaborations with Hans Zimmer. I'm a big fan of excellent sound design as well as a great score to back up the cinematography.

Runaway will now be showcased to over 300,000 film club members online and on the Into Film YouTube channel, and James has won a £100 Amazon voucher and a DVD! If you've been inspired by December's winner, find out more about how you can enter our ongoing Film of the Month competition.

If you liked Runaway why not try these related films:

  • The Selfish Giant (2013, 15, 87mins) Engaging for 14+
    Loosely based on the Oscar Wilde short story, 13-year-old best friends Arbor and Swifty roam through the working class areas of Bradford in Clio Barnard's fiction feature debut.
  • The Edge of Seventeen (2016, 15, 104mins) Engaging for 14+
    The world of high-school student Nadine spirals wildly out of control which, in turn, affects those closest to her in this sensitive and sympathetic exploration of teenage mental health.
  • Victoria (2015, 15, 138mins) Engaging for 16+
    Events take a turn for the unexpected in this extraordinary one-take thriller - set in real time across a single night - after Victoria's new acquaintances lead her down a dangerous path.
  • Following (1998, 15, 70mins) Engaging for 14+
    Christopher Nolan's films helped inspire filmmaker James, and the director's first feature film is an atmospheric thriller in which a man drifts through London unnoticed, and has plenty in common with James' own Runaway.

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