Last week I posted the first part (junior group) of this series of small video reviews from the SikhNet Youth Online Film Festival. Today I would like to share a few videos in the Intermediate Group which is of youth aged 18-25. This category is always the most competitive since it is the prime age for video production. We normally get the most video submissions from youth in this category.
It’s hard for me to just pick a few videos since there are always so many great creative videos. However, here are a few videos that I’m sure you’ll enjoy.
I encourage you to watch the other videos on SikhNet that are not featured here. All the participants of the film festival put a lot of time and effort into their videos, so I hope that you take the time to support them by watching the videos and shareing your appreciation and encouragement.
"Born To Lead" by 24 Year Satdeep Singh (Ludhiana, Punjab, India)
This is Satdeep’s second year making films for the SikhNet Youth Online Film Festival. Last year his film titled, "The Forgotten Truth" was the 2010 winner for the intermediate division. You can watch his last film as well. His film this year titled "Born to Lead" was a big jump up in production from last year. Using a Digital SLR camera (Canon EOS 550D) with a normal 50mm lens created some very dramatic visuals with focusing and the actual video quality. I was surprised to see a production of this quality from India, since often times the submissions from India are of lesser quality. They made their own music for the sound track for the video, which was produced by Tavleen Singh (TAV). I’m looking forward to them releasing the sound track that was played on the end credits of the video!
The story of the video has to do with relating to ones’ own Sikh identity and trying to fit in to what others think. It starts with a common theme of a Sikh guy liking a girl who doesn’t like him in return because he is "not her type" (meaning he wears a turban and beard). It has to do with his exploration of the value of being a Sikh, and for one’s self rather than for others. It has a nice surprise twist near the end which was creative. I also like that it felt real and personal, unlike typical Bollywood melodramatic stories that are unreal. When we first watched this film I even caught myself getting a bit teary eyed at few parts. The music…story…acting…and whole production was very well done.
It was also pretty cool to see the video spread through social networks like facebook and twitter. The more people commented on the video the more people shared it and saw the video. This video probably has more views within the first few days than any SikhNet videos in the past.
"The Reunion" by Angad Bhai and Ethan Russell (New York, NY, USA )
Two friends who share a common background reunite after several years of being apart. One is a Sikh who has cut his hair after being brutalized during a hate crime, and the other has kept his hair since birth. Their dialogue deals with issues Sikhs face when trying to assimilate into modern American society, while maintaining their cultural and religious heritage.
I had previously posted info about this video which was released online earlier this year.You can read that info for details on the film. The lighting, sound, visuals and camera work and overall production was really high quality. You can definitely tell how hard Angad Singh and Ethan worked on this film.
"Japji Sahib: Guru Nanak & The Kali Bein" by Harimander Singh (Santa Monica, CA, USA )
This film starts with an video except by SSS Harbahajan Singh Khalsa about Guru Nanak Dev ji and then goes into a beautiful dramatization/visualization of Guru Nanak going into the river and experiencing the universe. Followed by his return and emerging from the water reciting Japji for the first time.
"An old homeless man shows kindness and generosity to someone even less fortunate. I wanted this video to show people that there is always someone less fortunate and that we must always give to others."
This was a simple & short video with only music and visually telling the story of a homeless man who falls into luck, yet still shares. This was filmed here in Espanola with his father as the main actor and Hargobind Singh (the kid).
"Proud to be a Sikh" by Saumya Bhardwaj Kaur (Ghaziabad, UP, India)
"This is a story of a 6 years old child, who is not aware of the sacrifices made by the Sikhs. One day he transformed by a ray of light." This video is fun and playful and put’s you in the kids perspective. They did a great job with the video, sound effects and overall adding humor to the video. I’m sure kids will enjoy watching this video as well.