MILLBURN, NJ - The 6th Annual Millburn Film Fest hits the red carpet tonight at Millburn High School and the audience can look forward to nine award-winning films by Millburn's talented students. On the big screen this year will be “Eclipse,” “Flash,” “Heba’s Story,” “Lyric,” “Poppy,” “Sincerely, A Feminist,” “Soulfege-The A Capella Experience,” “The Fountain Case,” and “Walk- The Story of the Iron Grannies.” The top two filmmakers will each receive a scholarship to New York Film Academy one-week summer film camp.
Creative Millburn High School juniors David Chun & Jonny Berkowitz showcase their filmmaking talents in the experimental piece “Eclipse.” Joe Petrilli, also a junior, portraits a man that comes to terms with his loneliness and discovers a new meaning to life when he meets an unlikely friend. They go on a short, but enlightening journey, where the man realizes that there is much to appreciate in life.
In the film “Flash” filmmaker Kyle Farscht, a sophomore, explores the concept of "Do we really just exist in front of the camera these days...?" He enlists the help of sophomores Jess Yeager & Matt Gutkin as actors for this twist of fate film.
Ariel Riseman’s timely documentary, “Heba’s Story,” is a wonderful look into the life of a Syrian refugee living in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Ariel, a junior, just won the SOMA young filmmakers award for best documentary for this film.
“Lyric” is a hand-drawn animated film about a girl's struggle with depression. The film taps into her mind to show her battle with the monster that torments her. At first, it seems as if there is no escape, but she soon finds the strength she needs to face her inner demon through music. Freshman, Alex DeRosa, created this beautiful film “Lyric” with her digital artistry.
Senior, Aaron Surloff, touches your heart with his documentary “Poppy.” This is a short documentary about Max Marell and his experience with the Lung Cancer Association. The documentary highlights his connection to lung cancer, his grandfather's (Poppy) treatment of lung cancer, and then Max's work in creating a Millburn branch of the Lung Cancer Association.
Julia Newman documents her experience as a Generation Z teenager. Newman, a senior at MHS, says, “This past election was my first to follow closely and to vote in. In an open letter from young unsettled feminists like myself, this journalistic documentary explores what will come next following the recent Women's March on Washington and the Presidential Election.”
In the documentary “Soulfege – The A Cappella Experience,” sophomore Kyle Farscht follows the Millburn High School award-winning group’s journey on the way to the ICHSA competition (International Championship of High School A Capella). Luke Wroblewski , Music Director & MHS Senior, Jessica Stier, President & MHS Senior, Emma Hetherington, Treasurer & MHS sophomore, Matthew Green, Secretary & MHS sophomore, take us along their Soulfege journey.
Seniors, Brendan Weissman and Ben Goodman have us on the edge of our seats as the mystery unfolds in the film “The Fountain Case.” Weissman sets the stage of the film by saying, “It's been a year since the burning of the beloved Magic Fountain and Nick Ryan can't resist the curiosity that had piqued his interest. What ensues is a mystery that sends him down an ice cream rabbit hole of conspiracies and lies.” The actors Nick Ryan, Luke Wroblewski, Drew Pickard, Matt Sullivan, Danny Hayes, seniors at MHS, and Emily Bright, Junior at MHS, add so much depth to this film.
Middle School 8th grader, Rachel Solomon documents the inspirational journey of her grandmother Maxine Solomon in her film “Walk – The Story of the Iron Grannies.” The film shows the sheer stamina and determination of the Iron Grannies' as they walk across the USA coast to coast.
The superb selection of films chosen this year is thanks to the judging panel: Stuart Sender, Kay O’Connell and members of the Millburn-Short Hills Arts Advisory Committee: Cathy Scorsese, Laraine Brennan-Barach, Andrew Permison, Amy McGovern, Victoria Plummer, Donna Davis, Judith Kramer, Orna Greenberg, and Kathi Hecht.
If you can’t make it to the Red Carpet Premiere, the daytime encore performance takes place on Wednesday, April 26th at 11 a.m. at the Millburn Bow-Tie Cinema.