The Malta Independent 26 September 2021, Sunday

European Film Academy Young Audience award winner to be screened at ŻiguŻajg

Tuesday, 19 November 2019, 11:49 Last update: about 3 years ago

The Fight Girl in question is 12-year-old Bo (Aiko Beemsterboer), a headstrong and highly volatile young girl dealing with the ramifications of her parents' acrimonious divorce. Bo moves to an Amsterdam suburb with her mother and her brother, and discovers the art of kickboxing, which also serves as an outlet for her anger. Her talent quickly propels her to the Dutch kickboxing championships, yet as qualification looms, Bo needs to learn how to control her emotions and at the same time accept the fact she can't control everything in her life.

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Written by Barbara Jurgens and directed by Johan Timmers, Fight Girl arrives at ŻiguŻajg on a wave of critical acclaim and with numerous awards under its belt, including the 2019 European Film Academy Young Audience award (one of the official categories of the prestigious European Film Awards). The EFA Young Audience award given to films aimed at young audiences and voted for by an audience of their peers - in this case, 2,800 12- to 14-year-olds in 55 cities across Europe.

Cathleen Tanti, Cinema Programme coordinator at Spazju Kreattiv, believes it's important to introduce children to films from all over the world, especially films made in Europe and which deal with themes that would not necessarily be dealt with in a Hollywood children's film. "Arthouse films take a different approach; they are more script or character driven rather than just focusing on special effects," she muses.

"This is not to say that arthouse films are not fun," she adds with a laugh. "This year we introduced the 'toddler screening' series where parents can introduce children to cinema in a fun, baby-friendly environment. We don't switch the lights completely off so as not to scare the young ones and we keep the volume lower than our normal screenings. We hope that this positive first experience will be ingrained in the children's memory and will foster new audiences with a love for arthouse cinema."

Indeed, the films that form part of ŻiguŻajg's programme highlight the festival's commitment to promote European cinema. At the same time, it fits in nicely with Spazju Kreattiv's overall cinema programme which, throughout the year, features a variety of films from Europe and beyond. "With these films we continue to grow and enrich our film programme," says Tanti. "We believe it's important to have different voices from all over the world and we pride ourselves on being the only arthouse cinema in Malta that is not dedicated to mainstream Hollywood films.

"We also strive to raise the bar in cinematic quality and experience for both adults and children by always being on the lookout for the latest arthouse film and documentary releases, as well as festival nominees and winners," she adds. "Fight Girl falls squarely in that category!"

'Fight Girl' will be screened at the Spazju Kreattiv Cinema on Saturday, 23 November at 4.30pm.

ŻiguŻajg is produced by Fondazzjoni Kreattività.

For more information and to book tickets visit www.ziguzajg.org


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