The Northampton Arts Council works to support and nurture the arts in the city of Northampton. The Council awards grants twice each year to artists and arts groups from both state and locally-raised funds, and seeks to improve public awareness of the arts. Its' goals include maintaining and preserving the rich and diverse cultural heritage of Northampton, programming such annual events of interest to the community as First Night Northampton and Transperformance.

Friday, January 9, 2015

KidsBest-YouthFilm 2015

Co-produced with the Academy of Music Theatre

When: Monday February 16 - Friday, February 20, 2015
Where: Academy of Music Theatre-274 Main Street Northampton, MA


KidsBestFest is a dedicated children’s film festival with free admission that runs during February School Vacation week and includes films that are not screened at the chain theaters. The festival also includes YouthFilm, videos made by local youth who are at the beginning of their budding filmmaking careers. The YouthFilm participants are able to see their films on the Academy of Music Theatre's large screen in a theater setting. Special category added this year is the Sprintys from Northampton Community Television. Join us to celebrate local youth work in the video arts.

Monday, 1:30 PM - The Boy and the World - 80 Min, Rated G
Open your senses to a refreshingly original, uniquely visual animated film from Brazilian artist AlĂȘ Abreu. Employing everything from mosaics to watercolors, the film overflows with delight, exploding with vibrant color and samba/hip hop rhythms. The story focuses on Cuca, a young child growing up in the Brazilian countryside with his family. One day, his father leaves to work in the city, forcing Cuca to embark for the metropolis, hoping to bring his family back together. The animation starts simply, but as Cuca ventures further into the world, the visual style takes on a greater complexity, eventually creating a neon-infused cityscape with a variety of strange characters never seen before. The seemingly simple story unveils the conflict between country and city, poor and wealthy, handmade to motorized in such a way that audiences of all ages will experience different levels of the same narrative. Abreu’s film is captivating, keeping attention rapt for its full running time with hardly a line of dialogue all the way to its surprising and emotional finale.

Tuesday, 1:30 PM, 7:30 PM -  The Internet Cat Video Festival - 80 min, Rated G
"You love them. You mock them. But one thing you can’t do is stop watching them. Yes, we’re talking about Internet cat videos. Which either represent the pinnacle of human creative achievement, or a sign that the apocalypse is nigh. Or both." - Los Angeles Times

The Internet Cat Video Festival is the first offline celebration of online cat videos. In it's original form at the Walker Art Center, the festival is an outdoor event, gathering fellow feline fanatics to watch a curated collection of cat clips—from six second Vine videos to short films and everything in between—in a social environment. Programmed by Will Braden

Wednesday, 1:30 PM - On the Way to School - 77 Min, Rated G: All ages.

They live in all four corners of the planet and share a thirst for knowledge. Almost instinctively they know that their well-being, indeed their survival, depend on knowledge and education. From the dangerous savannahs of Kenya to the winding trails of the Atlas mountains in Morocco, from the suffocating heat of Southern India to the vast, dizzying plateaus of Patagonia, these children are all united by the same quest, the same dream. Jackson, Zahira, Samuel and Carlito are the heroes of “On the Way to School”, a film that interweaves the four pupils forced to confront and overcome countless, often dangerous obstacles – enormous distances over treacherous territory, snakes, elephants, even bandits – on their journey to the classroom. By setting foot on their extraordinary path, by embarking on this adventure littered with traps and challenges, they will begin to leave their childhoods behind. Pascal Plisson’s film recounts the journey of initiation that will change their lives forever.

Thursday, 1:30 PM - The NeverEnding Story (1984) - 102 Min, Rated PG
Bastian is a young boy who lives a dreary life being tormented by school bullies. On one such occasion he escapes into a bookshop where the old proprietor reveals an ancient story-book to him, which he is warned can be dangerous. Shortly after, he "borrows" the book and begins to read it in the school attic where he is drawn into the mythical land of Fantasia, which desperately needs a hero to save it from destruction.

Friday, 1:30 PM - YouthFilm 2015
Films made by local youth and youth from California who are at the beginning of their budding careers. The participants are able to see their films on the Academy of Music’s large screen in a theater setting. Special category is the Sprintys from NCTV. Join us to celebrate youth work in the video arts.

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