Over the past several years I have had the chance to attend the Hawaii International Film Festival in collaboration with Hawaii Pacific University. I have had several classes with Professor Britos who gets us press badges that allow us to see many movies during the festival. I have also had a class with AnnMarie Manzulli that gave us a press badge. But out of all the classes I have taken, I feel like the writing for digital media class makes the most sense to do HIFF in because we are constantly writing, tweeting and sharing what we are doing at that exact moment. The name of the class explains exactly what we are doing – writing about media.
I actually like these assignments that we are given because it makes us think of the film on a deeper level and analyze it more than we would have if we were just to watch it and then not think about it again. For example, the film that I saw was Blue; a documentary movie about plastic pollution in the ocean. Although I knew about a lot of the situations they were mentioned, it was interesting to listen to the audience’s reaction to some of the things they were saying. Many gasped in shock about the plastic stuck in the bird’s digestive system, which showed that particular scene was very powerful and used imagery that will stay in everyone’s mind.
There were several issues that not only I, but a few of my classmates came across that made the experience difficult to enjoy. For starters, I was not on island when the press pass was available to be picked up and I was not able to make it to Dole Cannery until week 2 of HIFF. I was not informed that my press pass would be canceled if I did not pick it up in time which led to issues when wanting to manage my schedule. I quickly reached out to the PR coordinator and she told me that I can pick up my pass before my film starts and she will escort me into the movie. Several days passed and I thought I would give my press pass a try. I went to manage my schedule online and it turned out that I still could not login. This frustrated me because I did not have time to deal with phone calls or emails a few hours before the film started. I ended up giving up and just writing my reviews about the 1 film I saw during HIFF 2017.
If it wasn’t for my schedule this semester and not having to leave off island the first week of HIFF, I definitely would have taken more advantage of my press badge and seen more films. There were several that really intrigued me and I wish I could have seen them.