The recent children's film festival had some great movies.

Did you see the film “The Mouse with a Mouth” at the recent Children's Film Festival? Representative of the film Suzanne Pindor says the animation film was adapted from the short story by Ervin Lazar.

“It was based on the childhood stories of the filmmaker Andrea Kiss,” she also spoke about the Belgian, French and Hungarian collaboration. The 16th International Children's Film Festival featured a plethora of topics.

If “Dandelion, Water Thirsty in Baerstadt” spoke about water problem, conservation and ways of making mineral water, the “Bridge Over the Wadi” told the story of children studying in a bi-lingual bi-national school established by Arab and Jewish parents.

The children become best of friends despite the hostile surroundings and conflicting cultures back home.

Taking a cue from Indian mythology “Chhota Bheem Aur Krishna” was a hit with the city students. It showed the valiant “Bheem” and the towering “Kanha” take on evil. “It is about the strength and attitude. It is about characters they can relate to,” says the filmmaker Rajiv Chilaka who has made television series for Cartoon Network and Pogo earlier. And for those who missed the screening the good news is that he plans to make DVDs that will be available in the market soon.

Take to schools

But how do children get to see these films after the festival in other countries?

“Film festivals are places to scout for films. The next step is to take them to schools, culture houses and film clubs. You can give them to television houses as a short series. Then there are new forms of media such as the internet and mobile,” shares Gert Herman, Asian Jury and film distributor. Child delegate Saroja has an idea. “We should screen the films before the main feature films in multiplexes like the mandatory documentary films.”

Well, you might be able to see the films soon as Children's Film Society of India Chairperson Nandita Das says, “we are talking to film distributors, television channels and schools, to take the films to them.” And festival director and CEO, 16th International Children's Film Festival, Sushovan Banerjee, promises to talk to Doordarshan to make an evening slot available for children's films.

Warm, a little serious and a whole lot fun, the children's films are sure to leave you with a better understanding of issues besides offering a global perspective on them. As Sooni Taraporewala, director of “Little Zizou” puts it, films that don't talk down to children imposing adult views on them but are made for the children.

Happy viewing.