Media students scoop top prize at Beacon Film Festival

19 February 2018
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Films created by Oaklands College media students about the impact of crime on its victims were celebrated on the big screen at the recent Beacon Film Festival, held in Welwyn Garden City.

Over 300 people packed out the Campus West Cinema on the final night of the three-day festival to watch nearly 20 submissions created by BTEC Creative Media and Foundation Degree Media students. The event was held in conjunction with the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner and Hertfordshire Beacon, the county’s victim care centre.

The students were tasked with creating a short film to use the skills and creative ideas in filmmaking to create and edit a short film in groups to raise awareness of the impact of crime on its victims and those around them.

Winning the level 3 award was #MeToo – a film created by Megan Thomas, Jake Cortgrove, Tia Fields and Josie Lyddon. The film utilised the powerful hashtag against sexual violence and harassment against simple but impactful shots of a girl with printed hands appearing all over her dress to raise an important message about consent and speaking out.

Taking home the win for the Level 4 and 5 award was the film, ‘Vicious Circle’ created by
Alicja Latke, Rory Campbell, Saffron Thomas, Pardrecka Williams and Blake Max. The film based it’s concept on a ‘group therapy’ style circle of people, with all members sharing the varied consequences their specific experience of crime has had on later life.

The final submission faced a judging panel made of BBC Three Counties radio presenter Roberto Perrone, Hertfordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, David Lloyd and Hertsmere Councillor Prevez Choudhury.

David Lloyd later revealed the winning ‘Vicious Circle’ team will now be formally commissioned by his office to create a further film on the issue of Modern Slavery.

He said: “I was really impressed by the high standard of films shown this year. Film is a great medium to tell a story and this festival has provided an opportunity to engage with younger people and understand the issues of crime from their own experiences and those of their peers.

“Students used their creativity and expertise to really reach out to the community and demonstrate crimes like cyber-crime, domestic abuse and hate crime are happening, whilst also highlighting that there is support available through Beacon to help victims on their journey to recovery.”

Oaklands Media tutor Oliver Samuel added: “I am really proud of all the work the students put into producing these films which covered a breadth of topical issues.

“This year also saw the addition of film-making and photography workshops that gave more of an insight into themes like modern slavery, cyberstalking and the impacts of crime on victims.”

View all film entries

Winning video: Vicious Circle