Overall I thought this course was extremely formative and very well structured. I really liked its fast-paced nature, with all the rigorous restrictions and deadlines as it was a terrific training on filmmaking discipline.
The main highlight goes definitely for the practical approach: to be enabled to make your own film in a 2 weeks course, to get your hands on all the material, getting to direct real actors, working directly with and get advice from seasoned professionals and getting to know how it all works on a film set was quite simply an invaluable experience, which by itself is well worth the price you pay for it – furthermore, it gives you more than just a certificate when you complete it – it gives you a finished film to put on your portfolio, produced with professional means and actors.
The tutoring environment is excellent, everything is very informal, the tutors are very committed and inspiring and the backstage organization is stunning – absolutely everything ran smoothly and without a flaw. I was aware that there were some troublesome unexpected occurrences (as one of the confirmed actors not being able to come) but they were always quickly solved by the staff and never affected the course plan. By this alone we can see the true filmmaker nature of the organizers – extremely versatile and adaptive.
The lectures are not very strong in the theoretical component but this is largely compensated by the course booklet they offer you which is fairly detailed and comprehensive for such a short introduction. You should see the lectures as an excellent opportunity to chat and to clarify how things are done with active, experienced professionals, and you will only take the most out of them if you’re ready to ask lots of questions.
I’m particularly insistent when it comes to this, but all the tutors had an amazing patience and they would always answer me objectively and thoroughly. I really appreciated their willingness because after all they are masters at what they do and I’m no one in this field. It was a real privilege to be allowed to develop such a close relationship with them.
I would most certainly advise anyone who’s taking their first steps in the world of filmmaking to go take this course. You won’t be disappointed. It will broaden your views, make you understand exactly how things work in the industry – this course could be easily called “How to make movies in 10 days”, because it’s exactly what it is.
It only scratches the surface, of course, you couldn’t do more than that in 10 days in such a vast, complex and multi-faceted subject as filmmaking, but it teases you to dig further and further by yourself.
Finally, at a personal level, this experience was particular significant because it made me have a very strong epiphany.
For the last couple of years I’ve been a little adrift, not knowing exactly what I wanted to do with my life.
This couple of weeks were the most intense, exciting and thrilling experience I had in this period of time. As a consequence I believe I’ve finally found my true vocation.
I wish to become a filmmaker.
If you long for a highly challenging, profoundly stimulating and ultimately fulfilling and rewarding profession, this is undeniably the realm for you.
Now I just have to build up the path to pursue this dream all the way, because only with full, unrelenting commitment will you thrive in this extremely competitive world.
And LFA’s outstanding Summer course gave me exactly the confidence I needed to start out this bold journey into the magical world of cinema…
Post Scriptum: Acknowledgments
I couldn’t finish this blog without expressing once again my deep gratitude to the London Film Academy and the Algarve Film Commission for the incredible opportunity they have given me to do this course.
I met some wonderful people throughout these 2 weeks and I’m thankful to all of them, but I would like to specially acknowledge Anna Macdonald, LFA’s joint Principal; Paulo Pereira and Eduardo Pinto, from AFC; Nélson “NJ”, from the LFA’s staff.
Congratulations on the excellent work and the best of lucks for the following editions, I’m sure they will continue to be a consistent success.
I also strongly hope I’ll be able to work with you again in a near future.
My very best regards,