ISLAMABAD: The little ones were treated to five days of interesting films with moral messages. The Little Art Lahore Film Festival at Cinepax in Rawalpindi came to a close on Friday. 

The not-for-profit organization has been organising film festivals in Lahore for the last three years, and hoped to bring the same tradition here when they began screenings on October 31. Invitations were sent to about 200 schools in Islamabad and Rawalpindi. Children from The City School, Froebels, and Beaconhouse participated actively throughout the week. For five days, children were treated to four daily shows from morning to night.

Students from Froebel’s gathered outside the cinema. PHOTO : THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE

Students from Froebel’s gathered outside the cinema. PHOTO : THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE

The organisers hand-picked 77 short films which had been sent in from all over the world. Short films consisted of cartoons, animated movies and even short feature films, such as The Post Man (Australia), The Opening Night (Netherlands) and Apple (Sweden). Each film carried moral messages on tolerance, interfaith harmony and societal issues.

While it may seem like a tall order to expect children of such young ages to comprehend the messages behind the films, many not only enjoyed the films but also understood the underlying themes in many of the films.

“It was fun watching the movies and my friends and I understood how the film tried to show how one should be kind towards people especially friends,” said Maham Niazi a City School student when talking about a movie that portrayed a girl being unkind to her friend in order to win a science project.

The Little Art Organization were extremely happy with the turnout, saying that they managed to bring in at least 4,000 students during the course of the event. Even though this was less than the full house shows in Lahore, the organizers seemed happy that in spite of being the first festival of its kind in the twin cities, they still received a good response from families and schools all in all. The festival even had a matinee show so that families could bring their children.

The organization also encouraged children from underprivileged backgrounds to participate. On their last day, children from another non-profit organization, SACH, were invited to the screenings.

These children are from poor backgrounds and are given informal education and rehabilitation by SACH.

“We hope to come back next year to a [higher] turn out, we are happy with the response we received in our first year here,” said Shoaib Iqbal, the organizer for the event.

Originally published by The Express Tribune

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