On Friday February 6, the West Bloomfield High School (WBHS) theater department put on a show known as film fest. Film fest allows students to display their talents and creativity in short films that are screened live in one spectacular event. Seven films were featured, including two from Royal Oak. Before the screening, WBHS freshman Jake Saperstein said “I am very excited for these films . . . I’ll feel like I’m in Hollywood.” The doors to the auditorium opened, the audience filed in, and the procession began.
The first film featured was “The Guyble” by Justin Dooley. This was a film about a teenage boy whose life was ruined when he and his friends discovered a book with the title “The Guyble” which offered a guide to be both popular and to get girls. The next film, “Frame of Mind”, by WBHS sophomore Ben Goldman, was about a young teenager who acts different from the rest of her family her family and seeks refuge through her psychiatrist. “Tulpa”, by Jack Brenner, was a film about a girl who takes part in a drug experiment that gives her wicked thoughts and visions of life and death. The Royal Oak High School showings took place in the middle of the festival with “Paper Planes”, produced by senior Evan Gulock, which portrayed a touching story about a boy who writes messages in paper planes and sends them out to people who are struggling. “The Affordable Care Act”, also made by Gulock, was a documentary about the benefits of president Barack Obama’s affordable health care plan. “Bloodlines”, by sophomore Dylan Bartlow, was an action movie displaying the highs and lows of life in the Mafia underworld and ending with a surprising twist. Finally, “Zuckerberg: The Real Story”, was a hilarious comedy on the outtake of why the business mogul Mark Zuckerberg actually developed the popular social media outlet, “Facebook”.
Most, if not all, of the participants were satisfied with the outcomes of their movies. Dylan Bartlow, a sophomore at West Bloomfield High School who directed “Bloodlines” said, “I think it worked out well.” Jack Bell, a sophomore at WBHS who was featured in “Bloodlines” said, “The film turned out just how I wanted it to.” Audience members were also impressed with the films. Blake Rubenstein, a freshmen at WBHS who attended film fest said, “[The films] were well directed, well cut, and well acted.”
After the screening, students who participated in the films celebrated their success. Sophomore Michael Jacobs, who was featured in “Bloodlines” said, “I was happy with the way my film turned out.” Participants also commented on the challenges of making a film. Bartlow said, “The most difficult part of making a short film is getting a bunch of teenagers to work together.” Bell said the most difficult part of making a short film was, “. . . the time factor . . . The ten minute constraint really puts on the pressure to perform your best.” Despite these challenges, the film fest displayed a variety of different genres from multiple districts, making the night a smashing success.